8 Smart Ways To Save On Your Car Insurance Premiums

Times are tough for many South Africans. With fluctuating fuel prices, normal household expenses on the rise, and consumers trying to make a living; some working two to three jobs in order to provide for their families. Many have had to look at cutting certain necessary expenses in order to afford even more important necessities.

Recent economic data proves that, although debt levels are declining, they’re still quite high considering; stating that roughly 75% of the average household’s income is used to pay off accumulating debt. This leaves very little room to cover expenses which are not mandatory, including comprehensive car insurance policies. According to the South African Insurance Association (SAIA), recent statistics show that only 35% of all vehicles on the road are covered by a comprehensive insurance policy; in contrast with international countries such as the USA and UK that legally require all vehicle owners to be in possession of a comprehensive car insurance policy.

It may not be a legal requirement in South Africa for vehicle owners to own a comprehensive car insurance policy, but it is a much-needed buffer to protect you from having to cover accident costs on your own. Taking into consideration the damage that can be done in the unfortunate event of an accident occurring, you may not be able to cover the costs without the backing of an insurance company.

So, instead of completely eliminating your car insurance policy to save money, why not implement the following 7 smart ways to save money on your monthly car insurance premiums?

1. Install a reliable tracking device
Upping your security is a must if you plan on finding ways to lower your car insurance premiums. Sure, it may be an added expense before you’re able to see any change in your monthly billing, but it’s definitely worth it in the long run. Once you’ve install a reliable tracking device in your car, inform your insurance provider in order for them to make the necessary changes on your monthly premiums. Remember, it’s important to be able to prove that your car is more secure than it once was. One of the best ways to do that is by adding a tracking device.

Not only will it give you peace of mind if you’re unable to store your vehicle in undercover parking such as a garage, it’ll also give your insurer peace of mind knowing that you’re a lower risk to insure.

2. Invest in an advanced, certified driving course
Driving experience counts when calculating your monthly car premiums. Insurance companies take into consideration the number of years you’ve been driving, your sex, and age before providing you with an estimate. However, it may not be a bad idea to add certified experience to the list in order to lower your monthly car insurance premiums. These type of courses make you a better driver, in which case your insurance company may deem you a lower risk for possible accidents.

3. Avoid claiming too often
Consistent claims will be a cause for concern when it comes to calculating your monthly car insurance premiums. It’s important to avoid claiming for minor scratches and dents that may not be serious; unless you want a rise in your insurance premiums. The best way to avoid this is by claiming only when it’s absolutely necessary; showing insurance companies that you’re a lower risk client.

Remember, just because you have insurance doesn’t mean you need to claim every time your dog scratches your car or someone fails to open their door in a respectful manner at the mall. Yes, those scratches and dents are unsightly and may hurt for a little while, but at least your pocket will be smiling.

4. Remember to update your personal information
As a policyholder, you’re required to give accurate, honest information on your current situation. However, many of us move or improve security measures without contacting our insurers. If you’re interested in lowering your monthly car insurance premiums, it’s important to notify your insurance company of any changes that may have improved your security; such as moving to a safer neighbourhood. You may be pleasantly surprised at the cut in monthly premiums from a simple information update.

5. Combine car and household insurance
Depending on your chosen insurance company, it may be worth looking into combining your car and household insurance policy for a more attractive monthly premium. Some insurers may offer a good deal, simply because you’re choosing to insure more than one asset. So before cancelling your comprehensive car insurance policy due to high monthly premiums, first consider the possibility of combining your insurance policies. It’ll save you plenty of hassles in the long run and you’ll end up saving a little bit of money while you’re at it.

6. Improve your vehicle security
Vehicle theft is a big risk for insurance companies; causing a rise in monthly premiums if your car is left outside on a permanent basis. In order to lower your insurance premiums, you may want to consider uncover parking in the form of a locked garage or guarded basement to lower the risk of vehicle theft. It may be a costly expense in the beginning, but you’ll be considered low risk by your insurer who will then re-evaluate your monthly premiums. Remember, the lower the risk of insuring you, the more you’ll end up saving on your monthly premiums. The lower your monthly premiums, the more money you have left at the end of the month to spend on other important things.

7. Consider trading in your car
Remember, high-performance cars will attract high car insurance premiums, unfortunately. One of the best ways to lower your monthly premiums is to consider trading in your vehicle for something ‘average’. Yes, it may be a downgrade in terms of looks and performance, but you’ll save on petrol and monthly premiums without the need to completely eliminate your comprehensive car insurance policy. Besides, there’s nothing wrong with owning a less expensive vehicle; especially if it get you where you need to go.

8. Stay loyal for as long as possible
It may be tempting to jump from one insurer to the next in the hopes of finding the lowest possible monthly car insurance premiums. However, it’s all about relationship building. The longer you stay with one insurer, the more likely your chances are at a reduced monthly premium. Building a track record with an insurance company will enable your insurer to evaluate your driving and payment habits; giving you the opportunity to reduce your monthly car insurance premiums over a period of time.

When tough times occur, cancelling your comprehensive car insurance policy may seem like the logical thing to do; taking into consideration all the other, more important expenses that need to be covered at the end of the month. However, it could be a mistake you may not be able to recover from in the unfortunate event of an accident. Instead of cutting your car insurance policy completely, find ways of lowering your monthly premiums to avoid getting stuck in a situation that’s going to end up costing you more than you can ultimately afford at the end of the day.

Due to South African legislation not requiring vehicle owners to be in possession of a comprehensive car insurance policy, consumers may be tempted to avoid the expense at all costs.

When motoring expenses become difficult to afford, consumers should rather look at cutting out other unnecessary expenses to ensure they can maintain comprehensive cover. Should they find themselves without car insurance when disaster strikes, the repairs alone could lead to financial ruin.