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Tips For Teen Drivers – Cheap Student Car Insurance Rates

Adding a teen driver to an insurance policy is enough to cause grief in the parents of the most responsible adolescents. Due to high risk and an unproven driven record, premiums can spike as soon as the new driver is added to the policy. We will show you a few ideas that may reduce your car insurance costs and give you a few more hours of sleep! You may be able to save between 10%-40% off your premium.
 

Prepare In Advance
 

As your teenager gets closer to getting their permit, (such as a few months in advance), begin investigating policy options. Contact your current carrier and get an accurate quote, and then use that to compare other online prices from different companies. Typically, you should compare prices from three different companies.
 

Do not wait until the last minute, such as the day they obtain their permit, because this is likely to result in a quick choice made for the sake of safety and compliance and may not be the best deal for you financially. Remember, comparing prices of other insurers will not cost you any money. And it might even reduce your rates.
 

Preparing ahead will also help you determine what discounts, if any, are available for teens. For example, many companies will offer a discount to new drivers with good grades. Have copies of recent report cards on hand for verification. This can also be an incentive for students to maintain good grades if they are partly responsible for the cost of their car insurance. This makes the biggest difference when they are under the age of 19.
 

Pay Less For Child Driving

Good Grades Lower A Teenager's Car Insurance Rate


 

Usually, a “B” average will reduce premiums by as much as 10%-20% on the vehicle they drive. If they are currently college students, a rate reduction will still be available. A copy of the most recent transcript will be required. Faxing, emailing or sending (through the mail) the paperwork is acceptable.
 
You may also qualify for a "student away" discount, if more than 100 miles away from home. However, there are carriers that apply an additional discount as long as they are staying at the campus, regardless of distance. Coming home for major holidays (such as Christmas and Easter) is acceptable. But the discount can be forfeited if the total time spent at home exceeds 30-60 days in a calendar year.
 

Basic Safety Tips
 

Slow down. Of course, this is the most obvious tip, but yet, it remains one of the biggest causes of accidents and claims.
 

Clean the windshield. Adults regularly spend the needed five seconds to press the button to squirt the windshield and let the wipers do their work. New drivers often don't even know where the button is!
 

If the traffic light turns green, wait a moment and look first. Once again, it's typical behavior for adults, but many teenagers simply take off without checking for possible oncoming traffic.
 

Pass vehicles with caution and only when necessary. Because of the unpredictability of other cars on the road, along with basic unfamiliarity with many areas, passing vehicles should actually be avoided, unless absolutely needed. Generally, the time saved is nominal.
 

Avoid driving in the snow without prior experience with adverse conditions. As a parent, teaching and training our children about the impact of snow and ice on road conditions is critical.
 

Consider An Older Car
 

If your teen driver is just learning, an older car with high safety ratings is likely to be associated with lower premiums than a brand new car. Of course, teenagers just getting behind the wheel may argue that they are entitled to a new car, but it's better to allow them to learn in an older vehicle and transfer those good driving skills to another car at a later date. If you're looking at several different possible used cars, you'll be able to get an estimate from the insurance carrier about the anticipated cost.
 

If you're looking online or visiting a dealership, keep a list of all the vehicles you're considering. You might be surprised about the potential differences in insurance among those cars and that can help inform your buying decision. And here's a tip from a father of two teenagers: Don't let your kids decide what type of car to get! Otherwise, you'll end up with a bright red sports car just about every time. Or a bright yellow small SUV.
 

Specific Vehicle Recommendations
 

Our favorite is a small SUV because of the combination of safety and cost (both vehicle and insurance). Several of the best options are listed below:
 
Buick Encore
Honda CR-V
Toyota RAV4
Fiat 500sx (No...It's not the Popemobile!
Chevrolet Trax
Mitsubishi Outlander
Subaru Forrester
Nissan Rogue
 

Although we do NOT (of course) recommend moving to another state just to lower your premium, we do monitor auto insurance rates in different states. As you may expect, many less populated areas have the best options. But there are many exceptions. If you are planning on moving, we can estimate the approximate rates in your new area. FYI -- For 2016, the most expensive state to add a teen driver is North Carolina, while the cheapest state is Hawaii.
 

Depending on the drivers and vehicles on your current policy, it may be less expensive to purchase an older car with only liability coverage, instead of assigning your son or daughter to a much newer vehicle already on the policy. Sometimes, this works best with males, who cost much more. But you would not want to title the vehicle in your child’s name. At least, not yet!
 

Play A Role In Driver’s Education
 

Tips To Get Cheap Teenager Auto Rates

Driving As A Teenager Is Much Different Than Driving As A Kid!


 

One of the best things parents can do is play a role in how the teen learns to drive and how responsible they remain as new drivers. An at-fault accident in the first few months can substantially increase premiums, and diligence in learning and preparation can be critical in developing the long-term safe driving skills.
 

Obviously, it’s always a good idea to take advantage of any school-sponsored driving programs. And take the time to practice with your child. And when you’re done, practice some more! It will pay dividends for many years. Also, focusing on the dangers of distracted driving is a must with newcomers to the road. You may not get a second chance.
 

From the time of getting the permit until after the test is taken, as a parent you can help develop safe driving skills that allow teens to adapt to many unpredictable conditions.  As previously mentioned, many insurance carriers will reward you with discounts or reduced premiums in the future, for every period of safe driving. This is especially important for all persons under age 21.
 

Adding Children To Your Policy
 

And when your child finally purchases their own policy, their safe driving record will help them keep premiums low. One way to reinforce the importance of safe driving is to make the teen responsible for a portion of the car insurance payment, and perhaps the maintenance and gas too. That may reduce the number of hours they are on the road and also expedite their search for a part-time job.
 

Regarding adding them to your policy, often, you are not charged until they actually have their permanent license, instead of the temporary permit. However, once they pass their exam, typically you should add them within a specific number of days. Although not often specified in the policy, adding them within 7-10 days is advised, unless you are advised differently by your agent or broker.
 

While adding coverage for your teen will certainly result in higher premiums, spending time to do the research and investigating options, as well as encouraging safe driving, can be beneficial for you in the short and the long term. Brokers and reputable websites (like ours) specialize in finding the companies that will help you lower the cost of insuring your young son or daughter on your policy. But of course, there’s no substitute for driving accident-free and getting good grades. That always helps your rate!
 

UPDATES:
 

October 2015 -- National Teen Driver Safety Week (NTDSW) occurs the third week of October and begins the 18th this year. The annual event was created in 2010 by Pa State Representatives Bob Casey and Charlie Dent following several fatal car crashes involving Pennsylvania students. During the week, drivers are encouraged to shut off their cell phones while operating vehicles.
 

Each year, a new theme is introduced. For 2015 (and throughout 2016), the theme is "Avoid The Regret -- Avoid Impaired Driving." While drugs and alcohol con cause impaired driving, being distracted, not concentrating, and not getting enough sleep can also be reason for accidents to occur.

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