Ten top tips to cut insurance costs

If you’re in the money saving mood this January then don’t ignore your insurance. Whether it’s motor, home, travel, life or income protection insurance there are simple ways of minimising the amount you pay without sacrificing the level of cover you receive.

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Here are our top 10 tips to insurance savings in 2009:

Tip One: Add an older driver to a policy

If you’re a parent help the young driver in your family out by adding yourself to their car insurance policy as a named driver. A 20-year-old driver with one year’s no-claims driving a Ford Focus would pay £1,371.85 for a policy with a £250 excess through Admiral car insurance. However, if the same driver added his 45-year-old mother to the policy, he could cut the premium to £1,089.30.

Don’t be tempted to put the policy in the parent’s name though as this is illegal – if your son or daughter is the main driver of the car, the insurance must be in his or her name.

Saving: £282.45.

Tip Two: Shop around for cheaper car insurance

Insurance premiums vary hugely so make sure you compare prices from as many providers as possible. For example, a 45-year-old male driving a Ford Focus with five years no-claims and a £250 excess could pay as much as £391.05 through provider Admiral. However, by opting for the cheapest quote through our comparison tool the same driver could reduce his annual premium to just £199.83 with LV=.

Saving: £191.22.

Tip three: Adjust the excess

Think about what you could comfortably afford to repay in the event of an accident. The same driver in tip two would pay £226.97 a year through Swiftcover with a £100 excess, but could reduce the premium to just £171.87 with a £500 excess.

Saving: £55.10.

Tip four: Add a partner

By adding his 45-year-old wife to his policy, our male driver could reduce his premium from £205.86 through Swiftcover to £182.83.

Saving: £23.03.

Tip five: Lower your mileage

If you live relatively close to work or even just use your car to run errands then agree to a mileage limit. Driving 10,000 miles a year, our driver would pay £202.73 a year – but he could reduce this to £194.58 a year by agreeing to only drive 5,000 miles.

Saving: £8.15.

Tip six: Pay annually instead of monthly

A home in Milton Keynes with a market value of £170,000, a rebuild value of £90,000 and containing contents worth £35,000 could be expensive to insure so a homeowner should take every action possible to save. If you have the cash, pay upfront each year instead of monthly to cut out interest charges – this homeowner could slash premiums from £118.79 to £107.96 by paying annually with Only Insurance.

Saving: £10.83.

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Tip seven: Shop around for home insurance

Make sure you’re getting the best home insurance quote available with a home insurance comparison website. Insurance on this Milton Keynes home with a £100 excess costs £193.90 through Marks & Spencer but just £88.62 with homequote direct.

Saving: £105.28.

Tip eight: Choose an independent provider for PPI

Payment protection insurance (PPI) can provide welcome peace of mind in the current unstable employment environment but that’s no reason to pay over the odds. With a £10,000 loan over three years with Nationwide you would £354.14 a month with the lender’s standard PPI added on for a total repayable of £12,794.04. However, by buying the PPI independently from the cheapest provider on our PPI comparison tool monthly payments for the loan and PPI combined would be reduced to £322.28 for a total repayable of £11,602.08.

Saving (over one year): £382.32.

Tip nine: Give up smoking

If you need added motivation to kick the smoking habit, make life insurance savings your impetus. A 45-year-old male smoker with a level term policy of £100,000 over 25 years would pay £432 annually with More Th>n as a smoker and £215.52 as a non-smoker.

Saving: £216.48.

Tip 10: Buy travel insurance independently

Buy your travel insurance as an add-on to a holiday and you’ll pay over the odds. A family of four taking a two-week trip to Spain in February would pay £45.99 for single trip travel insurance through Thomas Cook compared to just £11.05 through the cheapest insurer on our travel insurance comparison tool, in this case Insure4me. 

Saving: £34.94.

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

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