Three Weeks To save A Few Hundred Quid!
Every now and again surveys are done about car insurance. One perennial survey shows that you will save money by shopping around. It is pretty much regarded as fact. However, there are a couple of things that you should try that take shopping around to new heights! Two of them being…
When You Do It And How You Do It
There are two answers here.
Every Year and Three Weeks before renewal.
A couple of years ago, one of the online comparison sites declared that just over a third of customers didn’t shop around and “auto renewed”. They also suggested that by not shopping around, customers were collectively paying £1.3 billion more than they needed to. That’s rather a lot. It is also a reason why you must shop around to get a much better deal.
If we are being honest with ourselves, we are all a bit lazy. It’s part of being human. And it’s what companies rely on to, putting it bluntly, overcharge.
When you take out a car insurance now, it is almost certainly one whereby you have agreed to continue with the insurance automatically at renewal. The selling point of this is that you should never find yourself without insurance, which is actually a very good thing. the bit that isn’t shouted from the insurance company rooftop is that the premium you will be paying is going to be part of the £1.3 billion needlessly spent by those that don’t shop around each and every year.
As for the three weeks before renewal, this is likely to be the best time to start shopping around in order to get the best deal. Any earlier and you run the risk of not being quoted with up to date rates and any later and you start to feel pressured to take the first quote you get that may save you money, but not as much as if you spend a little time researching further.
Comparison sites and the telephone are the two go to methods for car insurance quotes today. Both are good and both have drawbacks.
The obvious drawback with the phone is the uncertainty of how long you are going to wait before your call is even answered. Then there is the fact that you are going to end up with one quote from one company. This could prove to be a long process.
Comparison sites are lazy brokers. I don’t mean that in a bad way, it’s just a fact. They have links with many different insurance companies, but by no means all of them and they have great systems in place that will automatically sort each companies quotes into price order. They are no different to what high street brokers were doing years ago, only then you could speak to someone and benefit from some advice.
With the advent of regulation, squeezing of commission paid to brokers by insurance companies and the general cost of running a brokerage to any decent standard, very few high street brokers can afford to include to cost of qualified advice in their business model with regard to car insurance. So if you are going to use the comparison sites at least do it with your eyes open. By that I mean be aware that each comparison site is different and will have access to some different providers, so don’t just use one site. Make sure that you answer the questions honestly and play with the variables of add-ons like Legal Expenses and windscreen cover. Altering voluntary excesses can also make quite a difference to your final cost.
Finally, a tip that was given to me a few years ago and I was surprised with the results. Once you have used a comparison site for a quote, that quote is stored for you to retrieve later. Instead of going back to that quote, do the quote again, but this time use your device in “Incognito mode” so it doesn’t assume you have been to the site before. In my experience, doing the quote in this way has resulted in getting a different figure in about half the attempts, many of which were cheaper!