Jun 4 2013
Getting car insurance for your teen can be pretty tricky. Your teenage son or daughter isn’t experience – the insurance company knows it. If you’re not careful, your child will end up paying through the nose for their policy. Fortunately, it doesn’t have to be that way. Here are a few tips to save your child (and you) money on auto insurance:
Add Your Child To Your Own Policy
It’s tempting to shove your child out of the nest, and put him on his own policy, but this might actually be the most expensive route to take. Yes, it might cause your insurance policy premiums to go up if you add your teen to your policy, but it’s probably not as bad as your child having his own.
Check with your insurer. Sometimes, insurance companies will look at the situation this way: you’re a safe driver. Your teen doesn’t have experience, but you do. Therefore, it’s a safe bet that, if you’re willing to take on your child, your child must be a good risk. After all, why would you risk your good driving record by adding a high-risk child to the policy?
Choose The Right Car
Your choice of vehicle will impact your child’s premiums. Try to go for a used vehicle that’s pretty low-key. A car that has a high-performance engine is usually a bad idea. Insurance companies look at teenagers and sports cars as a bad mix.
Teens are young, by nature, and inexperienced. Put them behind the wheel of a fast car and there’s a high probability of a car wreck. Watch your premiums (or your child’s premiums) skyrocket. Keep your premiums low by getting a 5 year-old “grocery getter.” It’s not sexy, but it will give your teen experience and keep your premiums low.
Safe Driving Courses
Driver’s Education classes are another overlooked way to save money on insurance. When your child first gets her license, she has a unique opportunity to save money. Driver Education programs are different from the safe driving courses you take as an adult, although your child might be able to benefit from those too.
Driver Education gives extensive, and in-depth, education on driving fundamentals and your state’s driving laws. Because of this, and the fact that students must pass both a driving and written exam, insurers often look favorably on kids who go through this multi-month ordeal.
Encourage Good Grades
Good grades pay off. If your child isn’t Einstein, that’s OK. Try to encourage your child to study more, raise his grade average, and be more responsible. Consider hiring a tutor, if necessary. Yes, tutors can cost $45 or more per hour. But this cost pales in comparison to the amount of money you’ll spend year-after-year on insurance premiums if your child continues to get lackluster grades.
While not every insurance company will dole out discounts for “A” students, a fair number of them do. Check with your insurer. In fact, it might be worth shopping around for a company that does reward good grades since your teen might be on your policy for a few years. Every little bit helps.
Gillian Kearney is always looking for innovative ways to save money for her family and friends. She also enjoys sharing her ideas and research through blogging. Visit the Monkey.co.uk site for more ideas.