Understanding Car Insurance Policy

Trying to understand the ins and outs of car insurance is a tricky undertaking. This is no coincidence as insurance companies deliberately make policies complex in order to ensure that they have a number of escape clauses that could save them the cost of paying out claims. An insurance broker is an insurance professional who can help explain the details of a specific car insurance policy to you, but there are also more general snippets of information that can help you secure the right insurance.

Do not ignore the add-ons

Most car insurance policies come with optional cover items like roadside assistance, replacement car rental and gap cover. These add-ons typically do not cost much more than the base cover, but could save you a lot of money. For example, if you have an accident and your car is unavailable for a week while repairs are being done, you will need to find alternative means of transport for that period. If you do not have another vehicle and using public transport is not an option, then you will need to pay for a rental car. The cost of a rental car for one week could be almost as much as six month’s worth of car insurance premiums. Paying a little more could save you a lot in the future.

Prices vary from company to company

Just like with any other product or service, unless one company has a monopoly, insurance premiums will vary from insurer to insurer. Car insurance is a highly competitive business and insurers provide different types of policies and different levels of service. Some insurance companies target specific groups like the women-only type insurers. They provide discounted insurance policies to these groups in order to attract them as clients. The important thing to do is to shop around. Getting insurance quotes from various insurers has become easy since the advent of the insurance quote comparison websites. A traditional insurance broker will also be able to source comparative quotes for you.

Your car’s profile affects your premium

Insurance companies collect and compile vast amounts of data about you and your vehicle in order to accurately assess your risk. The model of car you drive carries its own set of data which insurance companies use to determine premiums. Accident statistic data is one example. The number and frequency of accidents involving your car model will be used by insurance companies to determine your premium. Another example is if you drive a relatively cheap vehicle model, but it is not very popular and replacement parts for it are expensive then your insurance company will charge you a higher premium. Also, if you drive a car that is extremely safe and protects occupants in accidents then your insurance company will give you a lower premium. Crime data is collected by insurers for various car models and the risk of theft is calculated in order to determine your premiums. All of these factors and more are used to profile the vehicle you want to insure and set your premiums.

So how is knowing this useful to you? Well before you buy your next car, do some research and get quotes for all the models in which you are interested. It will give you a good idea of which models are cheaper to insure. This may influence your decision of which one to buy.