Car insurance premiums are rocketing.
Uninsured drivers, insurance scams and high-risk drivers are to blame, but you don't have to accept an increase in your premium as inevitable.
Do some homework, spend a little time on the internet and telephone, and you could see your bill going down, not up.
Our top 10 tips to beat the insurance increase
• Shop around online
It's the simplest tip, but the one that could save you the most money. Use comparison sites to narrow down providers, but don't assume that this is as cheap as your premium can get. That’s where the next tip comes in.
• Get them to fight for your cash
Phone the companies to see if they can beat the online quote. Don’t forget to contact insurers, like Direct Line, that aren’t on comparison sites.
• Mum and dad
Young drivers can save money by going on their parents' policy, but if they're the main driver of the car in question, they could get in trouble for 'fronting' – where an older, more experienced and lower-risk motorist is insured as the 'main driver' of a vehicle. Young drivers who put their mum and dad on their policy as additional drivers could still lower their premium because their parents are lower risk drivers.
• Find a friendly female
Like mum and dad, women are also considered lower risk than men, so men adding a female driver to the policy could also get a reduction in their premium.
• Drive other cars
You might think having access to other cars would increase your premium, but the opposite can be true. Try putting a partner's car on the policy – or a friend's or mum and dad's – and see what happens.
• Realistic values
There's no point insuring a £5000 car for £50,000. Your premium will rocket and you certainly won't get £50,000 for your Ford Focus in the event of a write-off.
• £9995, not £10,000
Drop the value of your car by a few pounds and you premium may fall.
• Extras and excess
Cutting back on extras such as breakdown recovery and European cover will reduce bills, but it might prove misguided if you're likely to need these services. The same goes for the excess – increasing the amount you pay before the insurance company puts its hand in its pockets will cut premiums, but if you make a claim, it can come back to bite you.
• Pay up front
Insurers will charge interest if you pay monthly, so settling in full up front will be cheaper.
• Limit your driving
Agreeing to a lower-mileage limit should also reduce your costs. The Young Marmalade scheme, which rolls a car and insurance into one package – and limits driving at night when young motorists are at increased risk – could also help cut bills for young drivers.
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