A major expense of car ownership is the required insurance coverage. It is easy to overlook that in the excitement of purchasing a new car, and often simply forgot about a year later when it is time to renew, but it is one of the few places you can take control and keep a few extra pounds in your pocket each month. People think nothing at all of going out of their way to save 3p on a litre of petrol but will pay an extra £10 every month on an insurance premium that could be sorted in a few hours.
Tips and hints for bigger savings:
Be Prepared: As insurance premiums are often paid in advance or by monthly debit it is easy to forget your best opportunity for getting a better deal is about to pass you by. By planning ahead, you can allow yourself to shop around and find the best insurance option to suit you. Make a note a month ahead of your renewal date to start looking. The first place to look is with your current insurer. Call and ask them about the policy and any perks or discounts you may qualify for while letting it slip that you want to be sure they get a shot at your renewal business. Often there will be new discounts or free add-ons as a loyalty bonus. If nothing else it may reduce the seemingly automatic bump in premiums each year. Knowing exactly where you stand with your current policy is a great starting place for further comparisons.
Get Organized: Do not presume you will remember what each company or online comparison site tells you because you likely will not. Many people believe that a stop at a comparison site answers all questions but think about it- if that were true then why are there so many different ones and why do they all yield different results? They make for a nice start but the fact is most comparison sites are what are known as “opt-in” sites. The insurance company not only agrees to release their policy quoting tools or a portion of them but also pays to do so. Many insurance providers choose not to participate in online comparison, preferring customers to visit their site directly in order to provide more individualized and sometimes better or more economical policies. Write each quote you receive along with date and phone number or site that the quote came from. An Excel spreadsheet is good way to record details. You can then quickly and easily access any data you need.
Narrow the playing field: Taking into account all the associated costs and give fair value to differences in policies (does this one have free courtesy a cars if vehicle is in shop- maybe the other one has free glass chip repair- this one the rates will not go up for a non-accident claim such as theft or fire- etc.) choose your three best options and get into the finer points of negotiation. Axa ROI Car Insurance is an excellent source for all around competitive considerations.
Let’s Haggle: Phone companies directly and let them know the lowest quote you have been given. When they offer to match or beat that quote casually ask what that will include besides price. Make sure they are offering to match value, not just price and give them the option of a few no charge extras. If they say that is their best offer and nothing else can be done do not get discouraged – just congratulate yourself at having been so skillful to this point and make the next call. The next call could be the one that saves you the most money! Enjoy your savings for the next year, and don’t forget to mark the calendar for one month before the policy expires….