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Six hacks for cheaper car insurance

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Written by: Emma Lunn
09/09/2020
Tweaking your job title, recalculating your mileage, paying for your policy annually and getting a black box fitted can all save you money on car cover.

With Brits getting back behind the wheel due to a return to commuting and the school run, many will be looking to save cash on their car insurance.

Financial website money.co.uk has  uncovered six simple tactics for Brits to slash their insurance premiums during the height of renewal season.

Save £103 by using the right job title

Your job title is one of the main pieces of information your Independent Auto Agent can use to calculate your premium and can have a big impact on the price you pay.

As you’ll normally pick your occupation from a list, for some jobs there may be more than one title that describes what you do.

For instance, in one example Money.co.uk found the average quote for a ‘bricklayer’ was as much as £103 higher than that of a ‘builder’, whereas an ’office administrator’ could pay £41 less than an ‘office manager’.

It’s not just those in full-time work that this applies to. Full-time parents, retired drivers and students will all pay less than someone who describes themselves as “unemployed”.

However, it’s important to be honest with your insurer, as lying on your policy could lead to your claim being rejected or your insurance cancelled.

Save £67 by recalculating your mileage

Typically, the more miles you cover in a year, the more expensive your insurance policy will be. However, it’s common for people to overestimate how many miles they actually do.

This could be especially true if you’re one of the millions of Brits who has switched to remote working during the pandemic.

Your latest MOT certificate will show how many miles you usually do in a year. A difference of 2,000 miles a year could save you an average of £67.

Some insurers such as Churchill and LV= offered discounts to drivers who drove less miles in lockdown.

Save £84 by buying insurance in advance

Purchasing your insurance ahead of time, rather than the day before its due to start, will result in much more favourable premiums.

According to Money.co.uk, arranging your insurance 14 days before its due could save you as much as 19% (£84 based on the average policy cost), compared to leaving it to the last minute.

Save £144 by paying annually

Most insurers charge more if you opt for monthly payments, by charging interest on your premium. This means, the more expensive your premium, the more expensive it is to spread the cost.

In example quotes, Money.co.uk found that paying for your premium annually could save you up to £144 a year compared to monthly payments.

Save £438 with a black box

Car insurance premiums for younger or new drivers can be eye wateringly expensive as they are statistically more likely to make a claim.

But with a telematics or  ‘black box’ policy, your premium is based on your actual driving, which means if you can demonstrate you’re a good driver, you could save hundreds of pounds.

Telematics policies tend to be geared towards young, low mileage drivers and can come with exclusions and restrictions. So it’s important to check the policy is right for you before opting for one.

A 19-year old-female, living in Bristol and driving a Renault Clio could pay £1,750 for a telematics policy compared to the cheapest standard policy costing £2,188, a saving of £438.

Save £476 with an experienced driver

Adding an experienced driver, with no claims or convictions, as a named driver on your policy could reduce premiums for new or young drivers.

Money.co.uk found drivers could save up to £476 by adding an experienced driver, such as a parent, to their policy.

However, it’s important to be honest with your insurer with who the main driver of the vehicle is. Lying about the main driver is called “fronting” – it’s illegal and could see your insurance invalidated.

Salmon Haqqi, personal finance expert at money.co.uk, said: “September is historically a peak time for car insurance renewals, coinciding with the launch of the new licence plates.

“Though your mileage may vary with how much you can save with these industry hacks, they really show how getting engaged with your insurance can pay dividends.

“With people across the country particularly budget conscious at the moment, these tips could help shave hundreds of pounds off car insurance premiums and put more money back in your pocket.”

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