Young Driver Insurance
Young Driver Insurance
UPDATED: Sep 29, 2020
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As a right of passage, teenagers and younger drivers look forward to getting their driver’s license. While parents are filled with uncertainty and joy of the momentous occasion, the revelation of the growing expense of auto insurance for young drivers may seem slightly overwhelming.
However, there are several ways that parents and young drivers can understand how to get the cheapest coverage.
Whether you are a parent helping your young adult with coverage or the young driver responsible for paying your own insurance you probably know it is going to be relatively expensive. While you want the cheapest full coverage or liability option you also want to make sure you are covered properly. In most cases it starts with the type of vehicle you drive, its worth, and its safety features. These will have a direct effect on which type of coverage you need and how premiums are priced.
Tip #1 – Consider Liability-Only Coverage
Not every car driven by a young driver requires full coverage. Perhaps you only need an affordable liability only option? Getting a cheap liability car insurance quote will come down to an auto insurance comparison. Learn more about liability coverage here.
Tip #2 – Address Points on Your Driving Record
First of all, it is a given that if you are under the age of 25 you will pay higher car insurance rates. Finding the cheapest companies that will quote you a lower rate isn’t something a younger driver can pull out of thin air.
A common tip is that if you have points on your record you may be able to get some removed by taking some defensive driving classes. With that your insurance company may drop your car insurance rate.
Tip #3 – Try Usage-Based Insurance
Some car insurance companies offer what is called pay as you go programs. The auto insurance company uses a device that is actually installed in the vehicle your young man or woman drives. It will record driving habits and allow you to get data on potential bad driving habits before they evolve into more risky behavior.
Not all states allow participation so reach out to your agent or company. The “telematics device” will need to be installed inside the car so the vehicle will also need to meet some requirements.
Tip #4 – Improve Your Driving Record
The biggest factor that affects the insurance premium for students is their driving record. DUI/DWI convictions or multiple speeding tickets can have exponential effects on the premium for insurance not to mention the fact that they are already considered high risk by the insurance company.
The associated fees with DUI/DWI convictions are extremely expensive. If a younger driver is convicted of a DWI or DUI, the base insurance premium could be raised thousands of dollars for a minimum of three years.
In addition, some insurance companies will not insure younger drivers who have multiple moving violations. The best practice is to utilize as many safety driving tips as possible.
Choosing the right auto insurance for young drivers can seem to be like choosing between the lesser of evils. However, the relatively high cost of insurance for younger drivers is substantiated by the rising number of automotive accidents and associated costs.
In many senses, handing over the keys to a teen driver is like letting go of the parental reigns. On the other hand, finding the right insurance is one way of ensuring that during their formative years nothing happens that will have harrowing effects on the future of the young person and the family.
Tip #5 – Get a Smaller Car or a Safety Assessment
Remember that the price of a student driver will pay for the insurance is not based simply on them as a driver, but type of car of car they drive is also considered. The Less fancy, and more basic the car is the cheaper the insurance may be. Some older vehicles do not get a discount, even if they are less expensive. Many older vehicles lack some safety features that are common on newer models.
Tip #6 – Limit How Long and How Far You Drive
A fact not many people take into consideration is that the more you drive the more likely you are to get into an accident and file a claim with your car insurance company. This is why your carrier likely asks you about how much you drive your car and what the purpose is. As a young driver you may or may not drive your car every day. Talk to your agent to learn about any savings as a result of your driving habits.
Tip #7 – Anti-Theft Devices
Often insurance companies will issue rate reductions for having anti-theft devices. The total value is dependent upon where you live, the type of vehicle, and device installed.
Tip #8 – Consider the Statistics
Parents note many landmarks as their children grow up. It often seems like only a short nap between a child’s first days of Kindergarten to getting a driver’s license. The milestone of getting a driver’s license brings with it the very real need of finding the right type of affordable auto insurance for teenagers.
For auto insurers, inexperienced drivers are high risk and pay high premiums for car insurance. Premiums for an average family can even double when a teenage driver is added to the policy. Statistically, teenagers have higher accident rates than any other group.
Men in general have more accidents than women. They have twice as many DUIs and speeding tickets than women. As a result, males under the age of 25 are considered the highest risk and pay the highest premiums of all insured. There are some factors that may reduce the premium parents pay for auto insurance for teenagers
Tip #9 – Consider the Type of Car You’re Driving
Keep this in mind: older cars may or not be are cheaper to insure than a newer one. If the car is an older six-cylinder bright red sports model, it will always cost more to insure than a four-cylinder sedate looking sedan.]
A newer car with updated safety features may be less expensive to insure than an older model without the common safety features such as air bags and anti-lock brakes.
Parents should research the safety rating of any car they plan on buying for their teenager. A higher safety rating means lower premiums. Teenagers should choose a basic, older, non-sporty car with updated safety features for their first vehicle in order to keep insurance premiums down.
Tip #10 – Take a Driver’s Education Course
Teenagers who take a certified driving course can lower their insurance premiums. Even a written course will help, but if the course provides actual behind the wheel, on the road experience, the savings can be significant.
Insurers have compared the driving records of teenagers who have taken behind-the-wheel driving courses with those who have not. Those who have taken a driver’s education class that provides time actually driving have lower accident rates than those who have not taken a course.
Tip #11 – Encourage Good Driving Habits.
Even when auto insurance for teenagers has been found at an affordable, reasonable premium, one ticket or one accident will ruin that and substantially increase the insurance premiums. Teenagers need to practice good driving habits.
A parent helping their teen learn to drive should always remind them to: drive the speed limit, wear seat-belts, not talk on the phone or text while driving, and most importantly, use common sense.
Tip #12 — Be Mindful of Where You Drive and Park Your Car
All auto insurers consider the mileage a driver of any age routinely drives annually in determining a rate. Mileage driven is an even more important factor when considering rates of auto insurance for teenagers. If teenagers only drive back and forth to school, rates will be lower.
If a teenager’s car is not on the road at high traffic times, rates may be lower.
Insurers want to know where the car is parked when it is not driven. Teenagers that live in neighborhoods considered safe and who park their cars in a garage or private driveway save money on insurance premiums.
Tip #13 – Getting Good Grades
Almost all insurers will offer cheaper rates to students with good grades. General rules for eligibility include:
- Must be a full-time student at a high school or college.
- Must be between the ages of 16 and 24 are eligible.
- Maintain a 3.0 GPA, which is a B average.
Insurance companies and their policies vary. If there are two teenagers in the family, a full good student discount may not apply to both, so parents need to shop around. Teenagers will need to submit their report card or letter from their school to the insurer whenever the policy comes up for renewal. Learn more about discounts here.
Tip #14 – Consider a Higher Deductible
Higher auto insurance deductibles mean lower payments. When parents consider the option of buying auto insurance for teenagers, parents need to balance the higher risk of inexperienced teenagers having an accident with the lower premium of a higher deductible. The amount of the deductible should at least be in an amount that is reasonable and can be met in case of an accident.
Tip #15 – Only Purchase the Coverage You Need
Parents should carefully consider the benefits of the policy they purchase. Teenagers likely do not need coverage that provides them a courtesy car if their own car needs repair.
Tip #16 – Get Quotes from Several Insurance Companies
Carefully compare online quotes from different insurers. Premiums for the same coverage will vary considerably from one company to another. Remember to compare apples to apples and be sure that the lower quote provides all the coverage you need.