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If you're a young driver looking to insure your first car, you probably already know that you face some of the highest car insurance premiums around.
Just a look at road accident figures for young drivers can explain why insurance premiums are so high.
What you may not know is that there are a few things you could do to bring down the cost of car insurance in your first years on the road.
Being aware of the risks that come with being an inexperienced driver can help you to think about how you can drive safely and avoid incidents which may involve an insurance claim.
AA Public Affairs report: Young drivers
DfT Road Accident Statistics Factsheet No. 6, 2009: Reported road accidents involving young car drivers
This new 'pay how you drive' insurance rewards safe driving. A small telematic 'black box' GPS device is fitted in your car to record how the car is driven. Factors like speed and cornering are measured to give you a score which may lead to a reduced premium if you drive safely.
The advantage of telematic insurance for responsible young drivers is that you pay a premium that's based on your driving record, rather than the record of all young drivers.
If you're interested in 'pay how you drive' insurance, then you could save money with AA Drivesafe telematic insurance.
If you drive safely – by following the Highway Code and staying within the speed limit – you will reduce your chances of being involved in an accident. By avoiding accidents you will improve your chances of earning that all important no-claims discount when you come to renew your car insurance.
In the UK every new car is assigned to a car insurance group. Rated from 1 to 50, each insurance group is based on how much the car is likely to cost insurers per claim. Cars in Group 1 represent the lowest cost for insurers, so the lower the insurance group a car is in, the lower your insurance premium is likely to be.
As a young driver it makes sense to look for a car in a low insurance group if you want to pay a lower premium. You can search the ABI database to find the insurance group for a car your interested in, or to find cars in a particular insurance group.
Thinking about the security of your car could help you reduce your premium. Things to consider:
Where your car is kept overnight
If you can, the ideal place to keep your car is in a locked garage. If this isn't an option, your car is best kept off the street.
It may be worth considering additional security devices for your car. Your insurer can advise on approved security devices. Devices which may attract lower premiums include:
Remove valuables from you car
Take the stereo, sat nav and valuables with you when you lock your car.
Fins, spoilers and other extras may look good, but if you modify your car it's likely to mean a higher car insurance bill.
When you're searching for a policy, make sure you compare like with like. Two car insurance policies with the same price may not offer the same level of benefits, so it's always worth checking to see whether the policy covers everything you need.
If you think you've found a bargain, always look closely at the detail, particularly at any compulsory excesses which you would have to pay when making a claim. What looks like cheap car insurance could actually be expensive if the excess is more than you can afford to pay.
AA Car Insurance