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How To Save Money On Teen Car Insurance
As a parent of a teenager, you face numerous challenges.
One of the minor ones involves finding affordable teen car insurance. Because teens are considered higher-risk drivers by car insurance companies, they face higher rates to offset the risk. With that in mind, let's look at some viable ways to keep your auto insurance premiums in check with a teen driver.
Saving on Car Insurance for Teen Drivers
To stop your auto insurance premiums from skyrocketing when your teen starts driving, try a combination of the following money-saving tips.
1) Comparison Shop to Find the Best Rates
With so much competition between insurance carriers and the ease of obtaining online car insurance quotes, it's silly not to take advantage of the situation. Some sites allow you to evaluate quotes from multiple providers at once, which speeds the process. Comparing at least 3 quotes will let you find the best rates. Remember not to sacrifice coverage for price, though. Cheap insurance doesn't always mean the best insurance.
2) Look for Teen Driver Discounts
While online, discover what discounts may be available to your teen. Do this for your current carrier along with other providers. Common teen discounts include those available for drivers who have:
- Taken a driver safety education course.
- A good report card. Insurers usually offer savings for teens who've gotten at least a "B" average.
- Low annual mileage.
3) Add Your Teen to Your Policy
See if it's cheaper to add your teen to your policy, or to purchase a separate policy. In most cases, the first option is less expensive. This is especially true if your carrier permits you to assign your teen to the car that's least costly to insure; if you do so, make sure your teen primarily drives that vehicle.
4) Choose a Car Wisely
If your teen will have his or her own car, be smart about the vehicle. Putting a teen behind the wheel of a flashy sports car can be really expensive and potentially unsafe.
Instead, opt for a car model with a strong safety record and the latest safety equipment. This will help protect your teen driver and should help keep your auto insurance premiums affordable.
5) Stress Safe Driving
Be sure your child understands that driving recklessly endangers lives. And, that breaking traffic rules or causing an accident could result in a suspended drivers license and even higher premiums. Make sure to:
- Be a good role model. If you expect your teen to drive safely, model the right behaviors behind the wheel.
- Set ground rules. Be explicit about what your child can and can't do when it comes to driving. If you don't want him driving after a certain time of night, make sure to say so and enforce the curfew. Set rules for cell phone use, implement a zero tolerance drug and alcohol policy, and make sure to follow your graduated driver's license laws.
- Educate your child on safe driving. Continually monitor your child's driving and teach them the right behaviors when you notice the wrong ones.
6) Consider Usage-Based Car Insurance
Usage-based, or "pay as you go" insurance lets the driver plug a vehicle into the device that monitors the driver's habits. Good driving can save you money on your premiums. Additionally, this system allows you to monitor your teen's driving when you're not in the car. You can notice risky patterns and correct them before they lead to an accident.
7) Increase Your Deductibles and Adjust Your Coverage
Choosing higher auto deductibles carries some risk, as paying a deductible after an accident could outweigh any premium savings you might have accrued prior to that point. But, it's something to consider, as it might get you a lower premium.
Also consider which coverages your teen really needs. If he has an old, hand-me-down car, does he need comprehensive coverage? The monthly cost may not be worth it if the vehicle is low-value.
8) Find Other Car Insurance Discounts
Leverage all the potential savings that may be available to yourself as a policyholder, including discounts such as:
- Multiple-car. Insuring more than one vehicle on the same policy can reduce your rates.
- Bundling (multi-policy). You can often save money by bundling your policies, such as your homeowner's and car insurance policies.
- Good driver. Having a record free of violations and at-fault accidents can help you maintain affordable rates. Once your teen has been driving for some time, she is also eligible for this discount if she keeps a clean record.
- Safe vehicle. The more safety features on your vehicle(s), the more likely you are to pay less.
- Safe driver class. Defensive driving classes can help you save. It's not just for students; anyone can take a safe driving course. Many insurers offer savings for driver training.
The Auto Insurance Savings Add Up
By acting wisely, you can significantly cut the cost of your teen car insurance premiums.
Always remember, however, that it's important not to skimp on coverage. With a teen driver, sound auto insurance protection is essential.