Every motorist is keen to get the best deal for car insurance and to make sure the policy offers top features and good overall service. The NimbleFins cheap car insurance company guide includes research on dozens of insurance providers; they have generated quotes and then compared the cheapest across customer ratings and independent reviews.
There are a variety of ways to get car insurance costs down. One of the best is to gather cheap insurance quotes and compare them.
There are several things to consider before purchasing a policy. These include:
- The type of cover, such as third party only or a comprehensive policy,
- Choosing a car with a lower insurance group rating,
- Comparing prices every year and not just automatically renewing,
- Using a telematics black box, which is particularly helpful for young drivers to lower the premium,
- Increasing the voluntary excess on a policy if the policyholder is happy to pay the amount if needed,
- Avoiding business driving where possible,
- Choosing a multi-car policy if there is more than one vehicle in the household can lower the cost by about 15%.
There are different levels of car insurance cover in the UK, depending on the car owner’s needs. There are third party only (TPO), third party fire and theft (TPFT) and comprehensive policies available.
TPO offers cover to other people involved in an accident, and other people’s property but not the car that is on the policy, so will not pay for any damage to that vehicle. This is the lowest level of cover available and the legal minimum, but this does not necessarily mean it’s the cheapest.
NimbleFins found in some cases, and a third party only policy costs twice as much as the cheapest comprehensive policy available. But it is important to note that this was from a NimbleFins study on cheap car insurance in the North East. When looking for a cheap policy, it is important to check all three levels of cover before choosing a policy to find the best overall deal.
For the cheapest car insurance, the work begins when choosing a car. Premiums are based on the insurance group a car falls into, from 1 to 50. This is decided on factors such as how expensive the car is to repair or replace.
So, for anyone wanting the cheapest insurance available, a car in group 1 is a good place to start. This includes Kia Rio, Volkswagen Polo, Citroen C1, and Fiat Panda.
Another important way to ensure the best deal on car insurance is to compare prices. The cost of insurance varies dramatically from provider to provider. This applies to buying a policy for the first time as well as at the time of renewal, as insurance providers don’t reward loyal customers.
Some insurance providers offer policies based on black box or telematics, which tracks the way a driver’s style of driving to determine if the person is a safe and careful driver. This type of policy can be very useful for young drivers to lower their premiums.
Being a careful driver is a sensible idea for all motorists, but even without a black box, good driving can prove good for the cost of insurance. If a driver does not claim on a policy, they build up what is called ‘no claims’ and can qualify for a no claims discount.
But it is important to note a no claims discount (NCD) is often added to new policies, not existing ones, and after the first year, the premium will likely increase as the discount is no longer in effect despite there still not being a claim made.
There are other ways to bring down the cost of a policy, such as choosing a higher level of voluntary excess. This increases the amount the policyholder has to pay in the event of a claim and can be a useful way to lower the premium as long as the person is happy to pay that higher excess should the need arise.
Another option for lowering the cost is to pay the whole premium upfront instead of in instalments. This is because monthly payments are charged a fee for spreading the cost across the annual insurance period.
There are also traps drivers can fall into when purchasing a car insurance policy that is important to watch out for, especially if the cost is important. Insurance providers will often offer more features as the process of purchasing a policy goes forward. These sorts of extras can include a courtesy car if needed, breakdown cover, and protecting a no claims bonus. It is important to consider if these extras are needed as they will add to the insurance cost and, while nice to have, may not be necessary, particularly if the budget is important.