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Here are the factors you need to know that might be affecting your insurance!
Insurance rates are calculated by using a lot of different factors, including personal aspects, the vehicle usage, the area etc.
Using these factors, the insurance company makes the best estimate on how likely you are to file a claim. This is how much you could be costing the company.
Your insurance rate will be higher when the company thinks you’re more of a risk and are likely to submit a claim. The lower your risk the lower the rate, hence the wide variety of insurance rates people get.
Past Driving Record
This one is a fairly important factor as to deciding your insurance rate. It shows your insurer how long you’ve been driving, and how many incidents you’ve had during that time. Your behaviour on the road massively contributes to your risk factor.
A person with a clean driving record generally qualify for a better insurance rate. This is as the probability of them filing a claim seems to be lower. On the other hand, if you were to have a bad driving history of accidents or moving violations, you look a bigger risk. This in turn increases your insurance rate.
Moving violations include things from speeding to driving under the influence (DUI). Something as small as speeding once can affect your rate more than you expect. A DUI, however, can affect your insurance a lot. Your rate could potentially go up 100% with this violation in tow.
A lot of violations, or severe ones, can even make you uninsurable to that company. This doesn’t mean that you’re totally without insurance though. Some other company will be able to offer one to you.
Studies show that people who are married actually have fewer accidents. Single people (involving widowed or divorced) are shown to be more active. This means, on average, they get into more accidents. Married people often share car journeys and therefore file less claims.
Although marital status has a minor effect on insurance rates, it’s still a factor some insurance companies consider.
Age can be a significant factor in what your insurer charges you. Typically, younger and the elderly are of highest risk on the road. Elderly people have slower reflexes and young people are reckless behind the wheel. This is the average shown through statistics and data collected from companies.
Different insurers will drop or heighten rates at different ages. It is often found that past the age of 25 your rate can drop 20%. Past the age of 50, insurance rates tend to start becoming larger.
Your location can be one of the beginning factors insurers look at. Densely populated areas increase your rates and less populated areas lower your rates. This is because the more people there are driving, the more likely you are to get into an accident. So, if you live in a rural area, your insurance rate will likely be lower than someone's in a city.
The company will take your postcode and work out where you fall on this scale. Location can be a large one, but not for all insurance companies/areas.
Furthermore, your postcode allows the insurer to gather information on your area, aside from population. This involves crime rates, weather damages, number of claims etc. If your area appears to be one of higher risk within this category, your rate will increase.
Statistics show that a driver with a bad credit score often leads to a – general – larger amount of claims. Typically, it’s shown that a credit score under 600 leads to a higher insurance rate. Although, other studies show there isn’t a specific number to which this starts. Credit score is a major contender as to why your insurance rate can increase.
Lower credit scores show that the person is more likely to miss a payment. Companies take this hugely into consideration with quite poor scores. Due to this, some insurers ask for a bigger up front percentage for the specific policy. This is so the company doesn’t miss out on any payments in the near future. For example, a bad credit score holder may have to pay 6 months premium for their policy.
This one’s easy. If you travel less, you are generally less likely to be in an accident regardless of everything else. You’re more likely to file a claim, which automatically makes you more of a risky customer.
If you had to drive an hour to work every day, compared to someone who drove 10, you could have a higher insurance rate. Keep your insurer updates on your mileage, as it could affect your rates.
Whether your vehicle is used for personal or business use can affect your rate. Business vehicles usually have more driving time, so they will generally cost more than personal use vehicles. More driving time means to the insurer that you’re on the road more, and are more accident prone.
As an example, if you use your vehicle for fast food delivery you will probably have a much more expensive rate. This is in comparison to someone who only goes out in their vehicle once in a while to do the shopping etc.
Whatever you use your car for will affect your risk factor. Make sure to always tell your insurance company if you use it for occupation, as not telling the full truth can invalidate your insurance.
We know a lot of these aspects can’t be controlled, but with those that can make sure you do. You never know how much extra something can be costing you.