Thousands of new teen drivers will be getting behind the wheel to head back to school this fall, and that means plenty of parents will be experiencing that odd mix of pride and fear that goes hand-in-hand with turning over the car keys to their “babies.” It also means their car insurance rates will be going up, sometimes considerably. Fortunately, there are a few simple ways to keep the cost of those premiums as low as possible:
- First, once your teen completes his or her driver’s ed program, forward the proof of completion to your insurer. Lots of companies offer discounts for completing driver’s ed in school or through private companies.
- Second, make sure your child takes extra steps to get good grades, which could qualify him or her for a good student discount offered by many car insurance companies. Consider paying your teen a portion of the amount you save if they qualify for the good student discount. For cash-strapped teens, a cash incentive can be a good way to motivate them to get the best grades possible.
- Third, make sure your teen understands the effects an accident – even a minor one – can have on your car insurance rates, and be sure your teen understands and practices good driving habits at all times.
And here are a few more tips to help take the worry out of turning over those keys:
- If you’re purchasing a new vehicle, look into makes and models that cost less to insure.
- Set limits and make sure your child understands them. Some parents limit the number of friends a teen can have in the car to avoid distractions; others limit driving to a certain radius – say, no more than 25 miles from home.
- If your child will be driving to school this fall, let them have plenty of experience driving now, before classes begin, so they’re as confident as possible when they get behind the wheel. Have them drive the route to school a few times so they can plan their time and don’t wind up rushing to make it to school on time.
- Invest in a roadside assistance program for peace of mind for you and your teen. Some insurance companies offer roadside assistance as an additional option. And of course, AAA is a popular option.
Adding a teen to your auto insurance policy is a great opportunity to review your coverage to ensure you have enough liability and collision. You might even decide to add an umbrella liability policy for added protection. At Tri-County, we’re ready to help you get the best coverage possible for your teen driver. Give us a call and let us review your coverage options today.