Auto Insurance and Teen Drivers

teen drivers and auto insuranceHas your child gone from tricycle to road test in what seems like the blink of an eye? Before we know it, our teenage children are asking for the keys to the car. This carries with it a whole new level of responsibility, and for parents, a whole new level of stress.

After your teen has passed the road test, insuring the new driver in the family is one of the next steps. Understanding your options before you begin this process can help alleviate some of that stress, and may even save you some money.

Safely driving a motor vehicle is not the only responsibility that comes with that brand new license. Automobile insurance for all licensed drivers is required by every state in the nation. It is protection you and your teen simply can’t be without. It will protect your teen and the car they drive, as well as the other drivers with whom your teenage driver shares the road.

The Cost of Teen Auto Insurance

One of the first things many people ask when insuring their teenage driver is, “Why is it so expensive?” There are several reasons why insurance premiums for teenage drivers are substantially more expensive than for older, more experienced drivers.

The key word is “experience.” Statistically, teenagers are more apt to take risks when driving. They may also make more mistakes simply because they lack experience, and distractions such as music, cell phones and friends in the car are a fact of life in today’s world.

Teenage drivers are four times more likely to be involved in a motor vehicle accident than drivers over the age of 25. Higher insurance rates are a direct result of these statistics. Your teen hasn’t yet had an opportunity to prove himself or herself with an “excellent safety record.” They will soon be given that opportunity but until that time, you and your teen will have to pay more for their privilege of driving.

Does My Teen Need His/Her Own Policy?

Do you add your teen driver to your existing policy or do you purchase a separate policy for them? The answer depends on several factors, although generally speaking, it is usually less expensive to add them to your current policy. This way, they can take advantage of any discounts that your insurance company offers such as multi-vehicle discounts or discounts for safe-driving records. Your agent can direct you to the most affordable choice.

There are ways to help lower the cost of insuring the new driver in your family. Enrolling your teen in a high-quality driver education course is one way to save. Another way is to choose a car with an excellent safety rating.

Some insurance companies offer discounts for students who maintain a certain grade point average in school and discounts are available to drivers who complete accredited driver safety courses. You can also look at the possibility of increasing deductibles to save on the premium cost, or perhaps foregoing collision coverage altogether if the car your teen will drive is older and already shows some “wear and tear.”

To discuss your teen driver and auto insurance, contact Joe DiCesare. Also, consider signing up the whole family for the Defensive Driving Class, which qualifies you for a 10% Auto Insurance Discount with the state of New York.

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