5 - 2010

Added Extras, Added Cost – What You Really Need On Your Car Insurance


car auto insurance

The following is a guest post from Gillian Davies.

The car insurance industry has changed over recent years. Initially, car insurance started with a number of basic offers and then grew into a serious business, covering a number of eventualities such as third party insurance, fire and theft, as well as add-ons that you could choose to add to your policy according to your needs. However, as risks on the road increase, so too does the cost of insuring your car. As a result, many car owners are returning to no-frills policies that allow them to hang on to as much of their hard-earned cash as possible. However, there are insurance policies available that allow you to cover all the basics and have a few extras, but still at extremely competitive prices.

Before purchasing a new policy, there are certain tactics you can employ to reduce your future costs. The first is to decide exactly what sort of cover you need. You can begin to work this out by looking at your existing insurance policy and examining what you are paying for. As every driver has different habits, driving histories and needs, you should question all the options and bolt-ons that are included. Is it absolutely essential that you have your wipers insured? Do you really need a roadside assistance add-on? It may be that you are surprised at the lack of cover you have and want greater cover from a future policy. Writing down what you have, what you want and what you don’t need can help you select a more appropriate policy in the future.

One of the most effective ways to reduce your costs is to reduce the likelihood of a claim. Theft and accidents are the two most common reasons that claims are made. You may want to consider improving your driving abilities. The Advanced Drivers Test is looked upon favourably by insurers. Taking care where you park your car can also impact significantly on your premiums. Parking your car in a driveway or a garage not only acts as a deterrent to thieves, but also minimises the risks of accidental damage. In addition, you could consider installing security devices into your car. Measures such as immobilizers and tracking devices can all have a positive effect.

While add-ons are sometimes useful, they are not always essential. For example, it might be cheaper to buy roadside assistance from an outside source rather than have it included as an add-on from your insurance provider. However, some add-ons are sensible. Adding a further driver to your insurance policy means that driving can be shared or the other person can take the car in the event of an emergency.

Competition in the car insurance industry is fierce. Since car insurance has evolved, there are growing numbers of insurers in the marketplace, each offering different, deals, perks and incentives in a bid to court your custom. But how do you know which insurer offers the best cover at the best price and whether this company is reputable?

The answer to this problem is at your fingertips: you can use comparison websites to compare car insurance quotes online. These sites present only the pertinent points of insurance policies, getting rid of sales pitches and industry jargon in favour of straight facts. The data from selected, reputable companies is presented alongside each other, so that you can quickly see which offers the best policy for your needs. In addition, many display the add-ons that you can buy and show just how much they will cost. By using a comparison site, you could save yourself both time and money, and avoid having to pay for extras that you don’t need nor want.

Gillian Davies runs her own business. She became interested in car insurance when her business started to expand and she needed to buy a van in addition to her Ford Focus.

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