Motorists looking to insure their cars are the latest cross section of the UK to feel the effects of sharply rising inflation. How much has it gone up by, what's the reason of just a steep increase and where can you turn to if you're starting to feel the pinch? We'll answer all three questions - and more - for you below...
Has Car Insurance Gone Up in 2023?
We're afraid it has. In Q2 of 2023, between April and June, drivers paid 40% (or £222) more than they did a year ago, a figure that far outstrips Consumer Price Index inflation (8.7%).
Why Has Car Insurance Gone Up?
The blame has been squarely placed on the pandemic, or more specifically, changing driving habits after the pandemic ended. Across each quarter of 2021, car insurance costs fell, as more people worked from home. With fewer commuters and cars on the road, there were less risks and fewer accidents. Police forces all over the country reported a 26% drop in the number of road accidents requiring their attention.
However, with normal driving habits resuming, the risk of car insurance claims has understandably increased. In addition to this increased frequency, higher inflation rates over the past 18 months has caused the cost of repairs, energy costs and paint costs to rise as well. Modern cars are equipped with lots in the way of advanced technology and safety features. With the required materials for such advancements in short supply, often across the entire globe, repairs don't come cheap right now.
Courtesy cars, given to customers during repairs, also have a role to play in the issue. Insurers are having to pay more for second-hand vehicles, and passing on the price as premiums. The pandemic saw new car production come to a stop, and as such, has seen the price of new and used vehicles increase as a result.
Does Car Insurance Go Up Every Year?
Not necessarily. We saw car insurance costs rise over the course of 2019. But like we said above, these costs decreased during the pandemic. The cost you pay for your car insurance, then, is dependent on external factors, which we'll look at below...
Risk Factors for Car Insurance Premiums
Generally, it's personal circumstances which are the reason the cost of premiums fluctuates so much from one driver and another. The higher the risk of accident, the higher your premium will be. These risk factors include:
Your age: Younger drivers - those 25 or under - tend to pay the highest premiums, as they're deemed more likely to be in an accident. So as you get older, and become more experienced behind the wheel, the less you'll pay for your insurance.
Your postcode: Certain areas will be more at risk of theft and vandalism than others. A rural area car will more likely cost less to insure than a car found in a city centre area.
Your job title: Even your career has a role to play. If your occupation is considered high risk, you might have to pay more. Someone working on a building site might have a higher premium than someone working in an office.
Your car's value: A more valuable car is more likely to be more expensive to repair or replace. It's also at a higher risk of being stolen. As such, your premiums are going to be more costly.
Points on your licence: The more points you have on your licence, the more your insurance may go up. Make sure you disclose them to your insurer, otherwise they may not pay out if you need to make a claim.
How to Get Cheap Car Insurance
The state of car insurance in 2023 is a somewhat bleak one, especially when you factor in other costs in our lives right now. However, there are still certain things you can do to help reduce your premiums, including:
Opt for black box or telematics insurance: With this kind of insurance, a device is fitted to your car, or your phone uses an app, that monitors your driving. Safer driving could mean cheaper insurance when it comes time to renew your policy.
Strengthen your no-claims discount: When you drive for twelve months without making a claim, you'll be rewarded with a discount on next year's premium.
Pay a higher voluntary excess: If you can afford it, it might be wise to pay a higher voluntary excess along with the compulsory excess when you make a claim.
Reduce the usage of your car: Reducing your annual mileage can reduce the amount you pay, so if you work from home, use public transport or car-share, it might well be worth it.
Drive something less powerful: The size of your engine is something insurers will take into account when they work out the cost of your premium. Cars with lower engine capacities tend to be cheaper to insure compared to high-end, high-performance vehicles.
Compare other quotes: When it's time to renew your policy, that new quote might not necessarily be the best. Try shopping around for other quotes to see what your options are before making your decision.
We hope this has helped clear up some of the issues surrounding the recent increase in car insurance premiums. If you're a business owner with a fleet of vehicles, you can find more information on business car insurance here.
For more motoring tips and advice, head to the Brindley blog. In the market for a used car? Maybe you want to learn about our servicing options? Follow the links or contact your local Brindley Group dealership today.