Is your multi-car policy costing you more?

Published:
15 April 2011
Topic:
News,Insurance,Car

If you've got more than one car, then it might seem obvious to go for a multi-car policy, but this may not always be the most cost-effective route.

According to research by swiftcover.com some two-car households could save money by insuring their vehicles separately, rather than going for a multi-car policy.

In fact, analysis by the insurer found that a household insuring both a BMW 318 and a Ford Focus could save £258 by insuring the two vehicles separately.

So even if your insurer is offering what seems like a really competitive discount on your home's second car, it still makes sense to compare car insurance prices online first to see if you can find a cheaper deal.

After all, premiums can vary hugely between different insurers, depending on the car you drive and whether or not the provider wants to attract drivers like you.

Sarah Vaughan, a spokeswoman for swiftcover.com, said: "It's easy to assume that multi-car discounts must offer the best value, but it's clearly not the case for everyone. It may be slightly easier but is it really worth paying hundreds of pounds over the odds? These figures show that no matter what discounts are offered it is best to shop around."

Beat rising premiums by shopping around

Another reason it makes sense to shop around for the best cover is that car insurance premiums are still rising.

The AA's insurance index shows that the average price of car insurance leapt 40% in the 12 months to March. That's the biggest increase ever recorded by the insurer, which has been tracking premiums since 1994.

Coming on top of rising fuel prices, this is causing many drivers some real pain.

But there is some good news. The AA believes the cost of car insurance will increase more slowly over the rest of the year.

Why are my car insurance premiums rising?

The reason the cost of cover has been rising so rapidly is down to fraud and personal injury claims.

In October last year, Fitch Ratings estimated that the UK's 'no-win, no-fee claims culture' alongside insurance fraud is adding around £80 to every premium.

Simon Douglas, director of AA Insurance, said: "Although the number of collisions on Britain's roads is falling, the number of claims for whiplash injury is rising. It's tempting to make such claims with the huge number of 'accident management' law firms using cold-call marketing techniques."

Figures from the Association of British Insurers show that, for every £1 paid in compensation, a further 87p is paid in legal costs.

Douglas added: "Every day over 200 such claims are made, often for accidents that happened up to three years previously, for which no mention of personal injury was made at the time."

You can help keep your car insurance premiums down by shopping around and finding the best price for the cover you need. Moneysupermarket.com customers save an average of £282 a year by comparing their renewal quote to the best deals online.

Making your vehicle more secure, by parking it off the road and installing a recognised alarm system can help cut costs even more.

Often adding an additional named driver can bring down the price too, so consider adding your partner to the policy even if they rarely drive your car.

Please note: Any rates or deals mentioned in this article were available at the time of writing.

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