Car insurance for the over 70s
It’s widely accepted that more experienced motorists will, in the main, pay less for their car insurance than younger drivers. This is largely because older drivers are statistically less likely to be involved in an accident and so are seen as less of a risk to insurers.
If you’re in the over-70s age bracket, although you’ll be paying less than younger, less experienced motorists, your car insurance premium may still prove to be a significant expense, particularly if you’re retired.
However, there are a number of ways in which the over-70s can cut their car insurance costs, one of the most straightforward being to use MoneySuperMarket’s price comparison tool to compare over 70s car insurance quotes and find the best deal.
And it’s arguably never been more important to search for the cheapest deal as a number of regulations have recently come into force that could affect the cost of car insurance for us all.
Let’s take a look at what they are and how they could affect your premium price…
Pushing up the cost of driving
Last year saw the introduction of the Continuous Insurance Enforcement (CIE) regulations; a new law designed to tackle the problem of uninsured drivers by making it illegal to own a vehicle and not insure it, regardless of whether or not it’s kept off the road.
Any car or motorbike owner who does not insure their vehicle will be initially be given a warning and fined £100, and if they still don’t insure it then they face a further fine of up to £1,000 and possible court action.
Only car and motorbike owners who have registered their vehicle as being off the road via a SORN declaration will be exempt from CIE.
The last big regulation change came via the EU Gender Directive, a European Court of Justice ruling that outlaws the use of gender as a factor when calculating insurance premiums.
This means that insurance companies are no longer able to offer women cheaper car insurance purely on the basis of their gender; although the effects aren’t fully apparent yet, the expectation is that women’s premium prices will rise by up to 30% while male drivers may experience a slight reduction.
How your car affects the price
The type of car you drive has a significant impact on the cost of premiums as every vehicle is placed in a car insurance group between one and 50, and the higher the group, the more it will cost to insure it.
And while it’s not exactly a case of ‘you-are-what-you-drive’, if you want cheaper over 70s car insurance then it makes sense to pick a vehicle that has a smaller engine and one that is less desirable to thieves.
You should also try to avoid cars that have cosmetic or mechanical modifications but it will work in your favour if your car has enhanced security features such as an insurer-approved alarm and immobiliser. Contrary to popular opinion, modified car insurance therefore doesn’t always have to cost more than a policy covering a conventional vehicle.
If you are looking to buy a car that sits in one of the lower insurance groups, or want to see what group your current car sits in, then visit www.thatcham.org and enter your vehicle’s make, model and engine size.
Get the best value
Remember, the cheapest over 70s car insurance premium may not always offer the best value and you should always read the terms and conditions to ensure you’re getting the right level of cover to suit your circumstances
Car insurance for over 70s motorists sometimes comes with optional extras, such as car breakdown cover, legal protection or access to a hire car should yours be off the road for any length of time.
Although you can cut the cost of your car insurance by taking off these optional extras, you should first weigh up whether you think you will need them and whether you can actually get them cheaper elsewhere. For instance, it may be cheaper to include breakdown cover as part of your insurance policy than taking over cover separately.
Remember, the cheapest over 70s car insurance premium may not always offer the best value and you should always read the terms and conditions to ensure you’re getting the right level of cover to suit your circumstances.
How to keep costs down
In addition to those listed above, there are many more ways for the over-70s to save money on their car insurance.
For instance, as well as adding security devices to your vehicle you can also cut the cost of cover by parking your car on a driveway, preferably, in a locked garage overnight.
Limiting the number of miles you cover each year can also reduce your premium price as can increasing the voluntary excess – the amount you pay in the event of a claim – on the policy.
However, if you choose to increase the excess you must ensure that you are able to cover this additional cost if you ever have to claim on your policy.
There is of course the simple way to save by making sure that your driving is top quality and that you have not picked up any bad habits. This will ensure fewer accidents and fewer claims. See how your fare in our MoneySuperMarket driving theory test.
For more ways to cut the cost of over 70s car insurance, visit our money saving tips page.