In recent years young drivers have seen the cost of car insurance increase with some annual premiums being more expensive than the price of the vehicle itself. From 20 June 2011 every vehicle must have a valid insurance policy even if it is not being used, unless a Statutory Off Road Notice has been obtained.
Insurance companies have to base their premiums on the level of risk that they face when insuring a vehicle. Many young drivers are inexperienced and are therefore more likely to cause an accident, however responsibly they drive. This inevitably means that drivers under 25 are often faced with higher insurance premiums and, coupled with the higher petrol prices, cannot afford to run a car.
Driving a vehicle without insurance carries a penalty fine of up to £5,000 as well as 6-8 points on your licence. The cost of accidents involving uninsured drivers is borne by the Motor Insurers' Bureau, which is funded by insurance companies who ultimately pass this cost on to their policyholders.
In an attempt to reduce the number of uninsured drivers (and therefore reduce the average cost of insurance premiums) the government has introduced new legislation which states that from 20 June 2011 every car must either have a valid insurance policy or a Statutory Off Road Notice (SORN). This applies to all vehicles, even if they are not being driven.
Keepers of uninsured vehicles will shortly be contacted and warned that they will face a fine if they do not take immediate action. Fines of up to £1,000 can then be imposed if the owner does not take steps to insure the vehicle and the car can be clamped, seized or destroyed without further warning.
Instead of opting not to take out insurance, young drivers should consider these 5 Top Tips to reduce the cost of your car insurance:-
- Check the cost of insurance before buying a car. Vehicles with smaller engine sizes are generally cheaper to insure.
- Keep the car in a secure place when not being used, such as a locked garage. Vehicles with less risk of theft can result in a less expensive quote.
- Drive carefully. Speeding convictions and claims for accidental damage can increase the cost of insurance.
- Reduce your mileage as much as possible. Drivers who use their cars less are less of a risk to insurers. This will also reduce the cost of petrol.
- Shop around for the best deals. Car insurance is a competitive market and researching quotes from different insurers can often mean you get a much better deal.