Monday, December 24, 2007

Understanding Car Insurance

Insuring your vehicle is probably one of the least enjoyable aspects of being a car owner. But as it's a legal requirement it's unfortunately not something that can be avoided.

With thousands of insurance companies to choose from, each using unfamiliar terminology, finding car insurance can be quite a daunting task for a new driver.

Without guidance, searching for car insurance quotes and finding the right policy can be a challenge. Here are some tips to help simplify the process of understanding car insurances.

Different Types of Policies

When you apply for car insurance you will be faced with the following policy options:

Third Party

This is the minimum amount of cover that insurance companies can offer you. It only covers damage costs if you injure someone else or their property in a motoring accident. Any damages or injuries sustained to yourself or your vehicle will be down to you to pay for.

Third Party Fire and Theft

This is the minimum amount of cover that some companies will offer. You will be protected if you injure or damage someone else's property. It also covers your own vehicle if it is stolen or burnt. What it won't cover you for is the cost of your vehicle if it's involved in an accident or is vandalized. This type of insurance is most appropriate when you have a vehicle that is of low value.

Comprehensive

This is the most expensive form of insurance but it covers you for almost every eventuality. What it covers can vary depending on insurer but most fully comprehensive insurance will cover you for accidental damage to your own vehicle, injury to someone else, damage to their vehicle and damage to your vehicle from fire and theft. Some policies will cover you for items that are stolen from your vehicle and also medical expenses if you are injured.

Excess

When applying for your car insurance you will be asked to agree on an excess fee. This means that if you are involved in an accident that is your fault, then you will be required to pay the first £100 - £500 of the claim. . If you are trying to reduce your policy then you can pay a higher excess, but in the event of an accident that is your fault, you will be required to pay this amount when you make the claim. It is important to note that with some insurers you may be required to pay a young drivers excess if you are under 25 years of age.

No claims Bonus

This is the number of years that you have had car insurance without making a claim. The more years you have the better, as this proves to the insurance company that you are of low risk, which will lead to a reduction in the amount you have to pay. If you do happen to make a claim, which is proven to be your fault, then you can lose you no claims bonus. If you have a number of years built up then your insurance company can offer you protection on those years, so you don't lose them in event of an accident that is your fault.

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