As if deciding on what car to buy is hard enough, we're faced with the double-whammy of then milling through countless different insurance plans to scout out the most economically viable level of protection we can grab for our new vehicle. Getting your car insured is a dizzying practice and rarely feels rewarding, but there are plenty of simple ways to keep the costs of covering your car as low as they can be as you get your new motor on the road. Here, we've produced a short list of quick fixes to help get you into your new driver's seat for less.
1. Get yourself a black box
By far the simplest way of minimising your costs is to get a level of insurance cover that's dependant on a black box.
Also known as 'telematics', a black box policy involves the installation of an app or device that records your behaviour behind the wheel of a car, and bases its premiums on your actual performance rather than your demographics - making it an excellent way for younger safe drivers to dramatically drop their costs.
According to uSwitch, young drivers between the ages of 17 and 21 with zero claims can could save an average of at least £1,200 by opting for black box insurance policies.
Of course, this option will only save you money if you're a responsible driver, and if you're recorded consistently speeding then your insurer reserves the right to cancel your coverage - even if you've not been involved in any accidents.
2. Make the most of that garage space
When getting an insurance quote, you'll always be prompted to answer a question on where your car will be parked overnight, and the safer the location where you keep your vehicle, the lower your insurance will be.
Because of this, having your own garage space is essentially the holy grail of low insurance costs, which is why it's a good idea to clear its usage as a store cupboard and make use of it as a secure location for your car.
Of course, not everyone's lucky enough to have their own garage, which is why it's important to look at your surroundings. Is there off-street parking available? Are you able to park on a front drive as opposed to a road? Be truthful in your answer, but make sure you optimise the use of a secure location parking your car - it could be worth a small fortune as far as your premiums are concerned.
3. Consider the level of cover that you need
This is another clear and easy way of saving money on your insurance but should be approached with a critical head.
Comprehensive cover is generally the most expensive form of car insurance you can take out and covers both your vehicle and others in a crash. Third party insurance, however, is far cheaper but only includes the repair and replacement of the motor that you damage in an accident, as well as covering any claims against you if you injure anyone in a crash. With third party insurance, you will have to pay for any damages done to your car if you're at fault for crashing it.
With this in mind, deciding on whether or not to go for a more basic form of cover should be up to you, and how you plan to drive.
If you're not intending to drive frequently, and only use your car for school runs and not long daily commutes, then third-party insurance could be ideal.
4. A little market research goes a long way
The Telegraph confidently calls this the 'number one way to save on car insurance,' while The Association of British Insurers believes you can save up to a third on the cost of insuring your car simply by shopping around and doing research.
Could it be that simple? Well, you have to keep your guard up, sometimes you could be given the impression that you're comparing two similar cover plans when in fact there are a few important policies missing.
Luckily there are plenty options for users looking to compare the insurance market before buying a car, and comparison sites are great for picking up the slack and running smart and easy-to-follow juxtapositions. Websites like MoneySupermarket, GoCompare, uSwitch and DirectLine all do stellar work in highlighting the range of options available to you before breaking the data down into digestible chunks.
5. Think carefully about who to add to your insurance plan
Be mindful of who to add to your policy. Including multiple drivers and younger family members, for example, on your plan will send your quotes considerably higher.
You might see it as inevitable that family members or friends could use your car in the future, but exercise caution and include only regular drivers on your insurance plan - you always have the option to add new names onto your cover for a few days at a later date.