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Don’t resort to illegal fronting to drive down costs

Are you fronting your child’s motor insurance? Nearly 100,000 parents are – but the implications could be serious. Is there a better way to keep costs down?

Fronting is a type of insurance fraud, whereby parents say they are the main driver of a car, but most or all of the driving is done by their child.

One in 10 parents of drivers aged 17-25 in the UK, have admitted to fronting their son or daughter’s motor insurance policy at some point, according to research from The Co-operative Insurance.

Of those who have admitted fronting, 37% of parents, equivalent to 99.6k, are currently doing so.

While this might sound like a tempting way to keep your costs low, it could invalidate your policy and make it extremely difficult to obtain insurance at a later point if you are found out.

Cutting costs is something we are all keen on, but shortcutting the law is never a good idea. So what else can you do?

Five ways to keep car insurance low

1. Consider how you pay

If your insurer charges interest, avoid paying by monthly instalments to keep costs low.  

If you don’t have enough money in your account when your monthly payment is taken by the insurance company, they may cancel your policy. You’ll be told in writing and will no longer be insured.

You will then have to buy replacement insurance before driving your car again, so it’s always better to consider the long term consequences and make sure you’re paying in a way that suits you.

You could also add a voluntary excess to your compulsory excess to lower your monthly payments.

2. Policy name additions – the legal way

There’s no law against adding someone as a second driver onto your policy to help drive down your insurance costs, so mum and dad could come in handy after all.

You can also get your name put on somebody else’s policy as their second driver to benefit from their no claims discount. Make sure they are over 25 with a good driving record before you do. Again, could your parents be a good choice?

3. Pick your insurer carefully

Shop around and get some quotes to compare. The more time you put in, the more likely you are to get better cover.

 

4. Choose a car in a low insurance group

Cars are divided into 50 insurance groups according to various factors, including engine size and the likely cost of repairs. The higher the insurance group, the higher the premium. So if you’re a young driver, it pays to check a car's insurance rating before buying.

5. Drive carefully and safely

Prove you are low-risk! Drive safely to avoid accidents and avoid getting points on your licence. When it’s time to renew, this should see your monthly payments fall significantly. Also think about driving less, if possible – lower mileage can equal cheaper insurance.

If you’d like to prove you have mastered the roads, telematics insurance schemes involve fitting a "black box" to your car which records how you drive. They build up a picture of a driver's behaviour at the wheel and record time of day, mileage, acceleration, braking and cornering. It can save young drivers as much as £800 a year.

You could even consider taking an advanced driving course – but do check if it will definitely get you a better deal or not.

 

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