CAR INSURANCE

How crime can impact your car insurance bill

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Drivers in the Australian Capital Territory are likely to be making fewer car insurance claims with the number of vehicle thefts reported last financial year down 37 percent on the previous year, according to police figures.

Simon Corbell, minister for police and emergency services, said in a statement: “I am pleased to see that ACT Policing has recorded such a positive downward trend in a range of property-related offences, like rates of motor vehicle theft.”

Safer streets and fewer claims means that ACT residents may be eligible for reduced car insurance premiums, so many drivers may be pleasantly surprised when their insurance renewal slip arrives in the post next.

Savings in other cities

For Australians living beyond the capital, there are still savings to be found on car insurance premiums simply by comparing policies before renewing with an existing provider.

RateCity’s Bi-annual Comprehensive Car Insurance Comparison conducted earlier this year revealed that the national average car insurance premium was $736. But the spread between highest and lowest quote for the same driver profile and address was as much as $700.

At the time of the research RateCity chief Damian Smith said: “while there are many other features other than price that need to be considered, it’s fair to say that some drivers could save hundreds of dollars by shopping around; in any event there’s no excuse not to spend an hour or two comparing car insurance quotes online.”

Slash premiums further

When shopping for comprehensive car insurance the key is to combine low cost with the features you most need; you don’t want to get caught out being under- or over-insured.

If you’re the only driver of your car or if you share it with a partner, you may be able to nominate drivers on your policy to reduce the premium. This means if someone else drives your car and has an accident, they may not be covered and you will be out of pocket. Alternatively, by limiting drivers to a minimum age, such as over 30 years, can also reduce your premium but still cover less frequent drives of your car, should something go wrong.

Eliminating features on your policy that you don’t need can dramatically impact your premium, so only pay for what is necessary. Most insurance companies offer additional options that you can add onto your policy at an extra cost too such as included hire car in case you’re without yours or optional windscreen protection, which will jack up costs.

Finally, remember to read the product disclosure statement before signing up for comprehensive car insurance so you know exactly where you stand.

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