11 ace ways to crush the cost of car insurance

Fed up with paying through the nose for your motor insurance? It’s time to get fight back and punch those premiums down. Here are our top tips for crushing the cost of your car insurance:

1 - Secure your car

  • Keep your car in a locked garage if you can. It’ll be less of a target for thieves, which means insurers will charge less for cover. Parking off-road at night is better than parking on the street.
  • If you don’t have access to a garage, then having an immobiliser, alarm and tracker should still help reduce premiums.

2 - Bump up the excess

  • Increasing the size of the excess – the part of any insurance claim you have to pay yourself – will cut the cost of your premiums.
  • But DON’T make the excess so big you can’t afford to make a claim.

3 - Don’t make modifications

  • Thinking of adding some flashy alloy wheels to your motor? Stop right there. Any modifications to your car will push up the cost of cover, because anything you do that changes the original spec can’t be guaranteed.
modified car

4 - Get your job title right

  • Your occupation can have a big impact on your car insurance premiums, because insurers base their premiums on their claims experience.
  • Tweaking your job description when applying for cover to see if you can get cheaper premiums. For example, some insurers will charge less if you describe yourself as a bricklayer compared to if you describe yourself as a construction worker.
  • Make sure the title you choose applies to the role you actually do, otherwise you’re giving false information. BIG no-no.

5 - Give the correct mileage

  • Don’t pay extra for miles you’re not driving. Give an accurate number when applying for cover.
  • Remember, inaccuracy could jeopardise any claim you make.

6 - Add a more experienced named driver

    • If you’re young, putting an older, more experienced driver on your policy can help drive premiums down.
    • DON’T register them as the main driver, though, if they aren’t. This is known as ‘fronting’ and is illegal. Another BIG no-no.

7 - Shop around

  • Never accept the renewal quote from your current provider without shopping around to see if you can find cheaper cover elsewhere.

8 - Pay annually rather than monthly

  • Insurers slap on interest charges if you pay for your cover monthly rather than annually. If you have savings in place, it can therefore make sense to pay for cover upfront if you can.
  • You could pay for your cover with a 0% purchase credit card, but you should strive to clear the debt before the 0% period comes to an end, and within 12 months (so you’re not paying for two premiums at the same time). Set up a direct debit to pay off the debt.

9 - Try telematics

    • ‘Black box’ or ‘telematics’ insurance policies are often cheaper than standard insurance cover, provided you’re a responsible driver.
    • This kind of policy determines your premiums based on your driving behaviour. If you’re under 25 and drive relatively few miles (say 6,000 per annum) you should see telematics policies in the list when you run a quote.

10 - Get more qualifications

  • Taking extra driving qualifications can help lower premiums.
  • If you’re a new driver, think about taking the Pass Plus training course. You can details from your local authority or a driving instructor.

11 - Check your car’s group

  • If you’re thinking of trading in your car for a different model, or have yet to buy a car, do a bit of research into which insurance group any car you’re interested in belongs to.
  • Cars have an insurance group rating from 1 to 50, so choose a car in a lower number group if you want to pay less for your cover.

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