What to look for when buying car insurance
When you’ve found a set of wheels it’s important to sort out your car insurance before you hit the road.
What is car insurance?
Car insurance falls into a few different categories - Comprehensive, Third party fire and theft, and Third party cover. You choose how much cover you need. When you’re comparing policies, make sure you check the policy wordings for more details.
We’ve put together some general information to help you choose what policy is right for your needs. It’s important to do your own research so that you can choose the right policy for you.
Covers your car and the damage you may do to others. Additionally, it covers damage done to your car by uninsured vehicles.
If you have an accident and you want your car repaired, comprehensive is the only policy that covers this. Most of our customers choose comprehensive cover.
Covers your car if it's stolen or damaged in a fire. It also covers you for damage you may cause to other people's car or property.
There is limited coverage if your car is damaged by an uninsured vehicle, and no cover for your car for accidental loss or damage if you are at fault. It's a lower level of cover which means the cost of this insurance will be less than Comprehensive cover.
This is the minimum (and also cheapest) level of cover available. It covers damage your car causes to other people's car or property.
Often mistaken for low value vehicle insurance, it's important to remember that if an accident occurs this covers the costs for other people's repairs which can be expensive.
Things to consider
Agreed value is a sum you choose to insure your car for at the time you buy your policy. Your agreed value is typically locked in for 12 months but it's not fixed for life. As the value of your car will change over time, at each renewal your insurer may change the agreed value of your insurance to reflect this.
Market value is insuring your car for the amount it is worth at the time you claim, in the event of total loss. It is worked out by a registered valuer, based on factors like type of car, mileage, and condition. Market value is often slightly cheaper than agreed value but it's a personal preference. Some insurers may not offer both covers.
Where do you drive your car?
Do you drive around the city or are you driving on unsealed roads? Consider taking out windscreen excess buyout cover as you may be more prone to getting chips in your windscreen.
Using you car for business?
Our private car policies cover you for driving to work, but won't cover using your car for work. Our Commercial vehicle insurance might be right for you if you're an on-road salesperson or tradesperson.
The excess is the amount you'll pay if you make a claim. The higher your excess, the lower your premium will be, and vice versa. It's important to choose an excess amount that you can pay should an event happen that requires a claim.
Keeping your cover up to date
It's important to let your insurer know if your circumstances change to keep your cover up to date, for example:
- If you move to a new house
- If you want to change the main driver of your vehicle or your level of cover
- If you modify the appearance or performance of your car
Check with your insurer if you're unsure and make sure you read your policy wording for full details.