Ten Factors that Affect Your Car Insurance Premiums

Posted: 22nd April 2014 09:04

By Webb Ward
You understand that car insurance is essential for offering you financial and legal security if you get into an accident or have your car stolen, but you also want to save money wherever possible.  How do you choose a car insurance package that makes financial sense?  Which factors affect how much you pay for your car insurance premiums?  Understanding the different levels of car insurance cover and the things that make a difference to the cost of the cover will make it easier to shop for car insurance. 
1.  Type of Insurance
The type of car insurance you choose – the level of car insurance cover – will determine how much you pay.  There are three categories of car insurance: comprehensive; third party, fire and theft; and third party (only).  You will pay most money for the comprehensive cover because it protects against accidents, theft, and third party damage.  The cheapest cover is third party (only) because it only provides cover for the damage you cause to another person or another person’s vehicle. 
2.  Age
If you are a younger driver then be prepared to pay more for your car insurance as teenagers and young drivers are considered to be higher-risk drivers.  Older drivers can get a cheaper deal on car insurance as they are considered lower-risk.
3.  Sex
Male drivers are considered to be higher risk than females and married drivers usually get lower premiums than single people. 
4.  Model of Car
Your car’s make and model affects the insurance premium you pay.  Expensive cars are more expensive to insure, and vice versa.  Some luxury models are considered high-risk as targets for hijackings and will consequently cost more to insure. 
5.  Driving History
If you have a clean history of driving with no accidents or citations then you will pay less than someone with a history of accidents. 
6.  Location
Depending on where you live and where you drive your car, you pay a greater or lesser premium.  Cities are more expensive, with rural areas considered lower risk for driving. 
7.  Car Security Features
If your car has an alarm system and other security features like a gear lock or satellite tracking then you will pay less.  Similarly, if your car is housed in a garage you can expect a lower premium. 
8.  Excess
The more you pay in excess – the amount of money you pay out before you claim on your insurance – the less you pay in premiums.  It is worth thinking about how much you are willing to pay on the excess as this can dramatically affect the premium cost. 
9.  Mileage
If you have a high annual mileage it means you are driving your car more, so you are more at risk of an accident or theft.  Consequently, your premium will be higher. 
10.  Car Insurance Provider
Shop around for a range of car insurance quotes, looking at companies like Santam, because the cost of premiums varies between companies even when your personal details and the information about the car remains the same.