Paying for car insurance sucks. There’s no debate. We’ve got one of the worst set ups in the world when it comes to motor insurance so I’m going to explain some methods you can use to try and make your car insurance cheaper.
Spending money on keeping your car running is frustrating at the best of times. One of the biggest costs of the lot is insurance.
But fear not, there’s good news. Although this is usually a big and ugly spend, there are steps you can take to reduce this burden.
I worked for some big insurance companies over in Australia and although not everything is applicable, I’ve got some good insider info to share with you.
How can I make my car insurance cheaper?
Without further ado, here are five steps you can take to save money fast and reduce the cost of your car insurance:
1. Shop around
This is the golden rule with just about any expense. If you’re looking to cut costs, you need to shop about a bit.
Do not settle for the crappy auto-renewal quote offered by your current insurer. Your loyalty is laughed at and not rewarded.
Some people take this to the extreme and you don’t need to start building excel sheets comparing prices or anything like that. This can be done in hours or minutes.
- First step is to find out what another year would cost you with your current insurer. This gives you a baseline to work from.
- The next step is to check out some comparison sites. MoneySavingExpert recommends doing so in this order: confused.com, MoneySupermarket, Compare The Market, Go Compare.
- Once you’ve checked all the comparison sites, check any companies like Direct Line that aren’t on these sites.
Doing this should give you a good idea about where will likely offer you the best price. But don’t stop here. Follow the other tips below.
2. Tweak the settings
When you fill out the forms for insurance, there are tonnes of questions and loads of options.
I really recommend twiddling around with these a few times to try and make your car insurance cheaper.
I’m not saying that you lie, but sometimes everything isn’t black or white. Also, these answers get put through to algorithms rather than being reviewed by real people.
For example, when filling my recent application I selected that the car would be parked on the driveway overnight. Just for fun, I decided to see what would happen if I changed this answer to parking on the street. Unbelievably, the insurance quote was £30 cheaper for street parking compared to driveway parking! Which makes no logic to me, but who cares.
Another option you can play around with is your job title. There are usually a limited number of options and often you cannot find your exact job. Weirdly, some professions and industries will come out cheaper than others. Again, don’t lie, but if there are potentially a few answers that apply to you, try them all and see if it impacts the quote price.
3. Third Party or Comprehensive
This is another strange one but sometimes fully comprehensive insurance is cheaper than third party.
What I prefer to do with cars is buy a cheap car and only get third party insurance. Then, I just make sure I have enough cash on hand to potentially pay for any small repairs or get a new car if necessary.
However, I’ve recently found that comprehensive insurance is actually cheaper. So make sure you don’t presume third party is always cheapest.
Once you’ve found the insurer you think will give you the lowest price based on the comparison sites, the next step is cashback.
Using a site like TopCashback, you can create an account and then click their referral link to take you to the insurer and sometimes get a decent bit of money back.
It’s not dodgy, don’t worry. The insurers pay cashback sites a referral fee for sending you there and they kick back a chunk of this fee to you.
I recently purchased a policy with Admiral but went through TopCashback and ended up getting £60 back on a £600 policy. So basically 10% cheaper overall!
Cashback sites feel like a strange concept for those who haven’t used them but they’re well worth it. Just make sure that you click their link to take you to the site once you’re actually ready to make the policy purchase. Otherwise it won’t record your transaction.
After you’ve done all this, you should find yourself with a cheap and tasty car insurance price.
Often, you have to give your current insurer notice that you will not be renewing the policy with them.
So, when you call them up to do this, just explain to them you’ve found a much better price elsewhere. Let them know the company and the price and ask if they can match it or beat it.
If they say they can’t do anything then no drama, see ya later! But they might actually be able to do a deal to keep you there, which could be easier for you.
Just remember to rinse and repeat this whole process the following year! They're relying on you being lazy.
6. Bonus Tip
A final word on insurance companies. Some companies are actually owned by the same overarching business or underwritten by the same insurers.
If you’re worried that a cheaper car insurance company will be bad, just check and see who really owns them.
When I worked in insurance, I was on the claims and customer service line for about five different insurance brands. Each brand was supposed to have its own identity and therefore priced differently.
But no matter which company a customer was technically with, they got the same service and support. It would just pop up on my screen telling me which brand they were with.