Motor Insurance

Getting The Best Deal On Car Insurance

Car insurance is a legal requirement in Britain, and there are countless deals on insurance policies to choose from. In this article, we look at:

  • What car insurance is
  • How to get car insurance
  • The different types of car insurance
  • Comparing car insurance and getting the best deal

What is car insurance?

Car insurance covers you if you are involved in a motoring accident, if your car is broken into, or stolen. As an insurance policy, it protects not only you, but also other drivers that may be involved in a motoring incident with you. How much your insurance policy will cost largely depends on the type of cover that you opt for and the level of protection, but also how much insurers assess you to be a risk.

The average cost of car insurance in the United Kingdom is £485 a year

Typically, a young person who has just passed their driving test is much more likely to have to pay high insurance premiums compared to someone who has been driving accident-free over a long period. Most importantly, to drive a car in the UK, you must be insured by law. You would not be able to tax a car without insuring it, and you could risk facing severe legal consequences if you are not insured to drive a car.

How can I get car insurance?

Getting car insurance is a very straightforward process that you can follow online. Initially, you would get an insurance quote from multiple car insurance groups that are authorised and regulated to issue policies in the UK. The necessary information you must provide to get a quote is your registration number, the model and brand of your car, its age and value, and whether you have made any modifications to your vehicle. Personal details must also be included, concerning your age, the area where you live, as well as aspects of your driving history.

Two drivers are taking pictures of their damaged vehicles for car insurance purposes

If you currently hold another insurance policy, such as home insurance, it would also be possible to ask your insurer about getting car insurance with them. They may be able to offer you a better deal if you choose to take out an additional policy with them. Once the quotes have been made available to you, generally within a short period upon request, you would be presented with numerous options at different prices that you could choose from.

Different types of car insurance

The most basic kind of insurance is third party, which is the minimum level of cover which allows you to drive or keep a car. If you have caused an accident, your insurance company is liable to pay for the repairs of the third party involved in the accident, but it would be your responsibility to pay for the repairs to your vehicle.

With comprehensive car insurance you may be insured to drive other people’s cars or also have insurance while driving a hire car.

Another type of policy is third party, fire and theft; this type of policy protects you if your vehicle sustained fire damage or if your car is stolen. Insurance premiums usually are higher when choosing comprehensive car insurance, which is the broadest level of cover possible. This type of policy covers repairs even in the case that the damage caused is your fault. Furthermore, you may be insured to drive other people’s cars or also have insurance while driving a hire car.

Comparing car insurance and securing a great deal

To get the cheapest car insurance deal, it is crucial to compare using online resources that aggregate information from multiple insurers. This is a convenient and fast way to find out how much your insurance will cost.

An insurer is shown assessing the damage on a vehicle for car insurance purposes

To find the car insurance policy that suits you, you must decide on the type of cover that you need. It is important to note that third-party insurance may not always be the cheapest option as many competitive offers in the market can give you more value for your money. For instance, you may be presented with deals at a very similar price range, but you may opt for a policy that also included breakdown cover.

The excess you are required to pay is another aspect you must consider. This is the amount that you are expected to pay toward an insurance claim. Typically, you are required to pay a small amount while your insurer provided the rest of the funds needed to cover the repairs for damage. If you need to make a claim, having a high excess can place a lot of financial stress on you so you may wish to opt for a policy that allows you to pay a lower amount as excess. Finally, it is essential to be honest with your insurer as any discrepancies may cause your policy to be invalidated.

Common questions about car insurance

How much does car insurance cost?
The average cost of car insurance in the UK is £485 a year according to the ABI. This concerns comprehensive coverage and equates roughly to £40 a month. Drivers under 25, however, pay on average over £1,600 annually compared to just £410 for the over 50s.
Which type of car insurance should I opt for?
Deciding on the type of cover that you need is effectively a matter of balance between the contents of the policy and its cost. Since the premiums you would be asked to pay depend very much on a variety of factors including your driving experience, line of work, you age, and the car that you drive, it is best that you compare different types of cover to help you decide what each policy is worth to you and how much you can afford. Luckily, comparing different insurance policies is free, and there are fast and convenient ways for you to make comparison online and help you reach a decision.
How can I get cheap car insurance?
The best way to get cheap car insurance is to use a car insurance comparison site. Furthermore, you may wish to consider what the most affordable cars are to insure, opting to increase your voluntary excess, using a telematics policy (also known as ‘black box insurance’), and limiting your mileage. Finally, after building your no-claims discount over a period, you would be entitled to cheaper car insurance.
Is it cheaper to pay for car insurance monthly or annually?
Car insurers offer you a discount when you choose to pay a lump sum to cover 12 months of car insurance. Paying on a monthly basis may be a more convenient option for many, but it could end up costing significantly more because the interest charged on the monthly instalments.
Can I cancel my car insurance?
Usually, you can cancel a car insurance policy and be refunded for the rest of the year if you haven’t made a claim. Some insurers may charge a cancellation fee, which is typically around £50. Cancelling or switching your car insurance policy would mean that your no-claims bonus would be lost. Therefore, it is essential to take into account these costs and whether it is worth switching insurers to make a saving.
Do I need a credit check for car insurance?
A credit check would only be necessary when getting car insurance if you choose to pay in monthly payments. The credit check is needed for the insurer to assert that you can make the payments and enter into a credit agreement with them. Be advised that a credit check will remain on your credit file and that your credit rating will determine the APR that your insurer offers you for your monthly payments.

About the author

Megan Walsh

Megan, a former employee of over 20 years in the insurance industry, is devoted to sharing her valuable insights on familymoney.co.uk

Apart from her interest in insurance, Megan also enjoys painting, gardening and keeping up with current affairs.

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About The Author

Megan Walsh

Megan, a former employee of over 20 years in the insurance industry, is devoted to sharing her valuable insights on familymoney.co.uk

Apart from her interest in insurance, Megan also enjoys painting, gardening and keeping up with current affairs.

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