If you’re looking to lower the cost of your car insurance, then there are tools and services online that can make your search a little easier. Here’s our quick guide on where to find the best deal when it comes to your renewal.
Also see our separate guide to choosing travel insurance.
The obvious first place to start is with popular comparison sites. You’ve probably seen the adverts for these online or on TV, with the likes of Compare The Market, Go Compare, and Confused all featuring prominently.
The advantage of using a comparison site is that rather than having to fill out individual forms outlining your vehicle, address, and other details, you only need to go through the process once. Then the service will apply that information to the searches and return results from a wide number of insurance sites. It’s quick, easy, and cuts out hours of repetitive typing.
Results are usually ranked by price, so you can move through them efficiently, with links that take you to the insurer’s own site allowing you to complete the application. If you want a good, broad selection of quotes in the minimum amount of time then this is the best place to start.
Bear in mind though, that comparison sites often don’t have quotes from the larger insurers, as they prefer you to go directly to them. So, we’d recommend visiting a comparison service, getting the quotes, then doing exactly that.
Going direct to insurers
If there’s a company you like, which may have been recommend by family members or friends, then visiting its website or calling on the phone is the natural approach you’d expect to take.
But, once you’re talking to the representatives or moving through the online form, you’ll usually be asked if you’ve already received a quote from another provider? This is where the comparison site results may come in handy, as they can act as a bargaining chip in trying to get a better price from the company.
Often insurers will try to match or get close to other providers in order to win your custom. It’s not a given by any means, but well worth having in your back pocket when it comes to negotiating a contract. If you’re able to spare the time, then visiting several of the big insurers and getting quotes means you can then try to play them off each other.
Sadly, this seems to be one of the only ways of getting deals these days, and it’s not unusual to have to go through the whole process each year as companies put up your premium rather than reduce it.
Try specialist providers
Not all drivers pose the same risk to insurers, and as such it’s possible to get better deals if you utilise this to your advantage and use specialist companies. For instance, statistically young women (17-24) are less likely to be involved in accidents that result in claims.
To cater for this, and the general difference in the behaviour of male and female drivers, companies like Diamond and Sheila’s Wheels primarily only insure women. This allows them to offer rates that are unencumbered (or inflated) by carrying the burden of overly exuberant young men at the wheel.
Another factor that affects the cost of insurance is age. Men between 20-29 are involved in double the accidents of those between 60-69, and this can mean savings for older drivers. Those over 50 are also one of the lowest risks, so searching for insurers that favour older drivers is a sensible way to go. Money Supermarket has a range of advice and a comparison search on its site, so we’d recommend starting there.
Finally, for families with a number of cars it would be well worth investigating multi-vehicle insurance policies. These are offered by a number of major providers and usually cover up to five cars. Each can be adjusted to factor in the amount of use and primary drivers, but pulling the policies into one rather than many simplifies things enormously and can save you money.