You couldn’t wait for the day when Mom and Dad handed over the keys to your first car. A vehicle symbolizes freedom, of being one step closer to becoming an adult and it also means being financially responsible for your actions while driving a car. Wait, what? Pump the breaks, being responsible for what? Financial responsibility or insurance, you know it’s that little piece of paper in your glove box that says you are covered in the event of an accident. Well, somebody has to pay to have that coverage and now you are in the driver’s seat and that somebody just might be you. So here is a little cheat sheet to help you understand auto insurance just a little bit better.
What is Young or Youthful Driver Exactly
Alas, one of the few times in life where youth is not necessarily a plus. You see insurance companies view drivers between the ages of 16-25 (sometimes higher depending on the company) as “inexperienced” and charge significantly higher rates for it. No, the insurance companies are not trying to pick on you because you are young, it’s just a fact that the less experience you have on the roads, the more likely that you will get into an accident. And those mishaps will most definitely happen if you can’t put your phone down and pay attention to the road. Put the phone down; texts can wait.
But isn’t just accidents you have to worry about, new drivers also rack up speeding tickets twice as fast as a more experienced driver. Don’t be despaired, although you can’t convince the insurers to lower their premiums because you promise to be a safe driver; many will offer discounts for being a responsible automobile owner.
Ways to Lower Your Insurance Premium as a Youthful Driver
Whether you have your auto policy or are still with your parents, these five pro tips will help with the premiums.
- Pick a car that insurers deem safe or cheap to insure. Every year the insurance institute comes out with their “safest” cars list.
- Pay attention to your speed! Drivers with no tickets or accidents will have a lower premium, every year that your record is clean; your premiums will get better.
- Hit the books. If you are still in school, many companies will offer a good student discount. They will ask for verification, be prepared to provide it.
- If you are too old(age cut off varies by company, but it’s usually 22) to be considered a good student, companies like Progressive will offer a safe driver discount for no accidents or tickets in the last three years.
- Pay your bills on time. Don’t let your insurance lapse and look for paid in full discounts or automatic withdrawal discounts.
On a side note, youthful drivers who also rent an apartment could qualify for a multi-policy discount if both policies are with the same insurance company.
For more about other factors that go into your auto premiums, check our article about factors that determine your insurance rates.
Do I Need Insurance?
If you have your license and are driving a car, then the answer is, you absolutely need insurance. Now, whether you need your own policy or if you need to be added to your parent’s policy will depend on a few things.
- If you have a car and it is on your parent’s policy because it is titled to them, you will be added to their policy. But keep in mind, whatever you do on the road affects their premiums so drive appropriately.
- Even if you have don’t have a car but have a license you should be added to your parent’s policy; if not, you may not have coverage in an accident where you were driving.
- If you are still considered a youthful driver but purchased the vehicle yourself, you can be on your own policy. But if you live at home and have the option, being on your parent’s policy can save you a little bit of money versus an individual policy.
Our auto insurance buyer’s guide will educate you on the coverages and limits offered on auto insurance policies.
If you are still a bit fuzzy on the ins and outs of auto insurance, we would be happy to help. Chat with us online or call us tel:(888)445-2793, and one of our knowledgeable agents will gladly go over questions you have and help find a product that fits your needs.