The recent rises in the cost of living are affecting everyone. Despite some changes in the way that motor insurance premiums are calculated, there is one part of the policy that can often be overlooked.
The location in which you park your car overnight or when not in use, can dramatically impact on your policy costs, so it is worth considering your options to ensure the best price.
Most providers will factor in three possibilities for the location of your vehicle: parking on your own driveway, in a locked garage, or on the street. However, it’s not quite as straightforward as that.
For example, did you know that insurers sometimes receive claims for accidental damage due to drivers colliding with garage doors or walls?
It seems obvious that parking in a locked garage affords the best security, but the possibility for accidental damage can also be factored in.
Parking on your driveway is usually less secure, but also less risky than parking on the street where passing motorists or pedestrians may damage your car.
If you are applying for motor trade insurance, it is also worth factoring in where work or client vehicles are stored out of hours.
Obviously, you can take your own steps to improve security, such as installing motion-sensor lighting, or putting other physical barriers in the way to deter thieves or prevent collisions.
Make sure however that you don’t completely block access just in case you need assistance from a third party such as a breakdown recovery service.
You should also park under or near street lighting if you do not have a garage or driveway available. While these won’t be factored into an insurance policy cost, they will improve your own peace of mind.
It is also sensible to avoid leaving replacement keys in obvious places around the house, as thieves will be wise to this. Adding a high-quality vehicle alarm is not only sensible but you can recoup costs through a reduced policy.
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Unfortunately, living in a postcode or area where crime rates are high can also impact your premium. The volume of claims an insurer receives from that area will also be checked; high claim rates will raise your policy cost.
If you have a black box fitted, remember that your insurer will be able to see where your car is left overnight – make sure that you are honest on your application, and notify your insurer should you change your regular parking place.
Insurers do not take kindly to fraudulent claims or behaviour, so it’s vital to be upfront and honest when applying for private or motor trade industry insurance.
As with all things motoring, a little common sense can mitigate many problems when it comes to vehicle safety and security.
While it may not be feasible to move house just to shave pounds off your insurance policy costs, investing in a good alarm and parking your vehicle in a well-lit area will definitely make sense.