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Tips on Getting Cheaper Car Insurance

By: Kevin Dowling BA (IMC) - Updated: 16 Oct 2012 | comments*Discuss
Car Insurance Policy Quote Alarm Device

You can’t drive a car without getting car insurance first. But you don’t have to just settle for the first insurance policy you find. Knowing more about how car insurance works will help you to get the best deal.

Your Choice of Car Counts

The cost of your car insurance will be influenced by the car you drive. Insurers will want to know the engine size, the make of car, its age and value before they provide you with an insurance quote.

New, popular cars with small engines and no modifications are the ideal choice if you are looking for a cheaper quote.

Security Devices

Your insurance company will also ask you whether you have any security devices – car alarms, immobilises and steering locks – fitted onto your car, either as standard, or added yourself.

The policy provider is working on the premise that a security device will reduce the likelihood of your car being stolen.

Fitting a Thatcham approved car alarm could reduce the cost of your insurance policy by as much as 10%. However, make sure that you get the device fitted by someone qualified to do so. A DIY-fitted device may not be accepted by the insurance company in the event of a claim.

Avoid Making Modifications

Insurers don’t like drivers making modifications to their vehicles, unless they are additional security devices.


Parking your vehicle off-road, could reduce the risk of theft, and also lower your insurance premiums. Garages and well-lit driveways are usually a deterrent to car thieves.

However, do not tell your insurance company that your car is parked in a garage if it isn’t. If your car is stolen and the insurer finds out that you made a false statement on your insurance policy, you run the risk of invalidating your entire policy.

No-Claims Discounts

Having a lengthy period of no-claims is usually the best way to keep your car insurance costs to a minimum. The sooner that you can build your discount the better.

Voluntary Excess

Whenever you make a claim on your car insurance, you will have to pay an initial sum towards the cost of the claim, which is known as the ‘excess’. If you raise this level of excess, say from £100 to £250, you should be able to reduce your insurance premiums.

Bear in mind though, that if you are unfortunate enough to have to make a claim, you could end up paying more as a result of the higher excess fee.

Compare Quotes

When it comes to car insurance it always pays to shop around. Even if you are satisfied with your current insurance provider, when the time comes to renew your policy, it is well worth comparing their renewal quote with other companies.

Most insurance companies try to entice customers with a low initial quote for insurance. You can often find a better deal if you look around.

Make sure that you compare different quotes on a like for like basis. Some companies offer breakdown assistance or legal costs as standard with a policy, others do not.

Make sure that you do not buy a cheap policy that will leave you worse off if something goes wrong and you have to make a claim.

Third Party, Fire and Theft

Most young drivers try to save money on their insurance by taking out a third, party, fire and theft policy instead of the standard ‘fully comprehensive’ policy.

As the name suggests you are insured for damage caused to your car by another vehicle (the third party), or if your car is damaged by fire or stolen.

However you are not covered if you cause an accident, and you will have to pay the cost of any repairs to your vehicle yourself.

Lower your Mileage

Insurers also ask you how many miles you drive each year. This will affect the cost of your quote, because the drive who tots up 20,000 miles a year up and down the motorway statistically runs a far higher risk of an accident than someone who only drives 5,000 miles each year. The average number of miles driven each year is 12,000 – 15,000, then you could reduce your premiums.

Pass Plus

If you are still looking for ways to reduce the cost of your car insurance, why not take a Pass Plus course?

Designed by the Driving Standards Agency, the Pass Plus is a course aimed at improving the driving skills and road awareness of drivers.

Anyone who holds a full UK licence can take part in Pass Plus, and successful completion of the course will be looked on favourably by insurance companies.

Young drivers who have recently passed their test could lower their insurance quotes by as much as 30% after completing the course.

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The biggest problem is always going to be young drivers, who are statistically a much greater risk, especially males. But when buying a car, be aware of which insurance band it’s in, and under 1.3 litres will almost always cost less in insurance. Add that to off-road parking and you can lower your bill (as much as anything can these days!)
driverman - 17-Sep-12 @ 2:54 PM
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