Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Ways To Save Money On Teen Driver's Insurance

It's time to hand over the keys to your newly licensed 16 year old. But how do you do it without also handing over 1/2 of your paycheck to your car insurance company? Teenagers are one of the leading cause for auto insurance claims, which means adding a teen driver to your insurance policy can be expensive. But there are some ways to cut your teen driver's insurance costs; here are some of the top tips.

Good Grades: The good grade discount for students will typically save you 15% on their insurance premiums. In order to qualify, most companies require a 3.0 or better cumulative GPA. However, some teen friendly companies offer some additional ways to get the discount including being on the honor roll or dean's list.

Driver's Training: While all companies give a discount for teens who take driver's ed classes (usually 15%), not all classes qualify for the discount. Most insurers require that the classes have a certain amount of behind the wheel time led by a state approved instructor. On-line courses and parent-led courses usually do NOT qualify for a discount. Most companies want to see a state approved course with at least 6 hours of street time included.

Teen Friendly Companies: When it comes to teen driver's, all insurance companies are NOT created equal. Some companies want to avoid teenage drivers at all costs, and the easiest way to do that is to make the rates extremely high. Prices can vary dramatically between companies, so if your current insurer's price seems unreasonable make some calls and check around. With our exclusive TeenSafe DriverTM program, we've had clients come to us who were paying as much as an additional $100 per month MORE than they needed to be simply because they were insured with the wrong company.

Monitored Driving: Some teen friendly companies are helping you keep your teen safe and lower your insurance costs at the same time by giving you the opportunity to monitor your child's driving. Monitoring devices can be installed in your teen's car that alert you to speed violations, aggressive driving patterns, boundary violations and a whole lot more. With most companies, the information is strictly for the parents (it is not shared with the insurance company) so it can be used to give instructions and mentoring on safer driving habits. TeenSafe DriverTM companies know you want your teen to get home safely, and give you tools to help make sure that happens. The bonus is that you can  also get up to 15% off of your teen's insurance costs.

No New Cars!: If you are going to surprise your teen with a new car, make sure it's only new to them. A newer car that requires full coverage is a sure way to skyrocket your insurance costs. Since an overwhelming amount of teens have accidents during their first 24 months of driving, the cost for collision coverage on their car can be quite expensive. Buying a gently used car that does NOT require financing will not require full coverage insurance and will save you big bucks. (To find a car that performs well in safety tests, visit http://www.iihs.org/ratings/default.aspx)

Who's Driving What?: Talk to your agent about how they're matching up the cars and drivers in your household. There's a lot of money to be saved by pairing the right driver to the right car, and your agent should know the right way to rate your teen driver. The best way to find out is to ask "did you rate my teenager to the least expensive car?"

On average, Colorado families should be paying less around $40 per month for you teen that does NOT have their own car, and around $80 per month for your teen that DOES have their own car (with liability only). If you're paying more, you're probably paying too much!

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