A study by MoneySavingExpert has revealed that more than 55% of car insurance quotes are found within a week of the car’s current policy expiring, a process which is known to increase premiums.
The largest percentage of quotes are obtained within 48 hours of the renewal date, at which point, car insurance prices are likely to be at their highest.
In some cases, policyholders were charged more than £500 extra for their cover when leaving it until the very last minute.
The average cost of car insurance when purchasing around 3 weeks in advance is £672 per year, compared to the £1,218 per year average price when cover is purchased closer to the renewal date.
How far in advance can I buy car insurance?
Once you know the expiry date of your existing policy, it is recommended that you begin searching for a better deal as soon as possible – if you find another company offering cheaper premiums than your existing provider, it might be worth enquiring about a potential price match.
Remember, there are few-to-no benefits of remaining loyal to your car insurance provider. Insurers often save their best deals for new customers to entice them into joining, charging loyal customers more in the hope that they don’t look for a better deal elsewhere.
Learn more: The Best Car Insurance Comparison Sites
How do I get the best car insurance quote?
According to MoneySavingExpert, drivers should wait until between 25 and 20 days before their date of renewal before taking out their next year’s car insurance.
Prices remain high between 30 and 28 days prior to renewal before falling drastically, making for a ‘sweet spot’ at around 3 weeks before.
Why does the price of insurance change?
The price of car insurance is largely dependent on factors such as age, type of car, driving history and address, but it can also be impacted by the date of policy purchase.
This is because car insurance, as with most other forms of cover, is based on risk; the risk of whether or not the provider believes you will make a car accident claim during the length of your policy.
Those who take out car insurance around 3 weeks in advance are deemed to be more organised and careful, which, while it might not relate to the driving risk posed, it gives insurers the impression that you are less likely to make a claim.
Insurance is still expensive when looking for a quote too far in advance (27-30 days) because most providers do not give price comparison websites access to their quotes until later on, meaning there is less competition during this period.
How to save money on car insurance – Tips for cheaper cover
As well as planning the day on which you search for your next car insurance quote, there are a number of other common ways in which people can reduce the cost of car insurance.
- Check the sites not on comparison sites – Not all car insurance providers show quotes on comparison sites, so be sure to check them out separately. See a comprehensive list of insurers not on comparison sites here.
- Add a named driver – A great way to find cheap car insurance for first-time drivers, adding a more experienced driver to your policy can drastically reduce premiums. Just be sure you are not committing the criminal act of fronting.
- Change job title – Your occupation is a key factor when calculating car insurance premiums, so try a few variations of yours –just make sure you aren’t lying.
- Comprehensive vs Third Party – Believe it or not, comprehensive car insurance can sometimes be cheaper than third party. Check to see if you can get better cover for less money.
- Alter your excess – Agreeing to a higher voluntary excess can offer reduced annual premiums, just make sure you can afford to pay the agreed amount (plus the compulsory excess) in the event of an accident.
For more great ways to save money on car insurance premiums, check out our 10 tips and tricks for cutting the costs on your car insurance
Cheap car insurance deals with Bobatoo
Price comparison websites aside, another way of finding cheap and reliable insurance quotes is to let us do it for you!
Bobatoo works closely with some of the UK's best car insurance companies to ensure the best car insurance deals for people of all ages. Simply tap the green button below to get your free quote today.