Motor Insurance Options for Young Drivers

By Cliff

If you’re helping a young driver find car insurance for the first time, you’ll realise that it’s quite different from insuring an experienced driver – and much more expensive.

Insuring an inexperienced driver is always going to cost more because they’re less able to anticipate hazards and judge risk than somebody who’s been driving for years. However, targeting the right kind of motor insurance will prove helpful.

Application form mistakes can be costly
Make sure the insurance application is accurate. If the car isn’t going to be driven for a large number of miles, say so in the application as this could reduce the premium. Also, driving a car to work doesn’t mean it needs to be registered for business use.

Named drivers
Be honest about who the main driver is. Don’t be tempted to try to reduce the cost of a premium by using the name of an experienced main driver with a young person being a named driver. This is called ‘fronting’. It’s against insurers’ rules, and can invalidate the insurance policy and lead to being prosecuted for fraud.

Are you insuring a new or old car?
If the car would cost too much to replace, you might consider comprehensive insurance. This also covers third-party liabilities, fire, theft and personal injury.

For old, low-value cars, you could consider third-party only insurance. This covers your legal obligation to pay for damages and compensate for injuries to a third party in the event of an accident that is your driver’s fault or 50/50. However, if the car was damaged or stolen, third-party only insurance policy wouldn’t pay out.

Choose cars with modifications carefully
Accessorising a car with items that are attractive to thieves (e.g. alloys) pushes up the price of insurance. Adding modifications that improve security reduce the cost of your policy.

Monthly instalments cost more
If possible, pay for annual motor insurance up front. This always costs less than paying in monthly instalments.

Your excess alters motor insurance costs
As a rule of thumb, the higher the excess on your insurance agreement, the lower the premium will be. However, if you have an accident it means that you pay a higher initial sum before your insurance pays out.

Reducing risk with telematics
Fitting a telematics box to monitor the way a car is driven can help prove to the insurer that the young insured driver is no riskier than somebody who is aged over 25.

Look out for ghost insurance brokers
These are people who sell fraudulent car insurance, usually online, often targeting men aged 20–29. The City of London Police have launched a campaign to prevent this. See  https://www.cityoflondon.police.uk/advice-and-support/fraud-and-economic-crime/ifed/Pages/ghostbroking.aspx

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