Buying car insurance can feel like a chore for anyone, but it can seem like an especially intimidating task when it comes to acquiring insurance for a teenager.
According to Forbes, adding a 16-year-old son to a family car insurance plan will raise the monthly bill by an average of 92% while adding a 16-year-old daughter will raise the cost by a lessened, yet still staggering, average of 62%. And while these numbers are a bit alarming, there are tips and tricks for parents to take use when buying insurance for their newly-licensed teen.
The key to saving money? It turns out—it’s all about safety and your car insurance company being able to trust your family to drive safely.
#1. Take advantage of good grades
A high grade point average, strong attendance record, and all-around good track record at school can help score a lower insurance rate for a teen driver in high school or college. On average, these discounts range from five to 10 percent, depending on the insurance provider. For instance, Liberty Mutual offers this perk to drivers aged 25 and under that maintain a B average (equating to a 3.0 grade point average) or better.
#2. Pick the right vehicle
Picking the right vehicle for a teen can also attribute to a lower insurance rate. Although many believe it to be true, the color of a car doesn’t impact the insurance cost, but other factors such as the make, model, and year of the car does carry some weight in this matter. This is because new cars are more expensive to insure, and the same goes for cars with a high level of horsepower.
Instead of picking something brand new and flashy for a teen driver, opt for perhaps a lightly used car that has all the right safety features. This includes anti-lock brakes, updated airbags, and stability control. Cars that are no more than three or four years old and that receive a clean bill of health will be the cheapest to insure for a new driver.
#3. Consider a raised deductible
A raised insurance deductible can assist in scoring a lesser monthly bill for car insurance when a teen is added onto a family plan. A deductible dictates the amount that is paid out-of-pocket in the event of a claim. After that deductible is paid, the chosen insurance company will pay for the balance of any damages incurred.
While it may seem counterintuitive to actually sign up for a higher deductible, making this choice does decrease monthly premiums significantly. In fact, MetLife cites this as a way to reduce insurance costs across the board. This is a bit of a risk, but cranking up a deductible as much as possible will allow for some serious savings. Keep in mind, that deductible only needs to be paid should a claim for an accident or damage be submitted.
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