Van insurance news roundup: 7 days ending 7 Feb 2014:
Car insurance companies love saying how cover is cheaper than ever, but let’s be honest: only for a select few customers. The rest of us pay big.
The latest load of bollocks from the car and van insurance industry has surfaced, courtesy of the Association of British Insurers. The ABI says that the average price of a comprehensive insurance policy is now only £370 – an amazing drop of 9 percentage points over last year. While on the face of it this sounds like cause to celebrate – and I’ll admit I felt some initial relief upon reading these new figures – but then I noticed one very important facet: it’s just an ‘average.’
Do you know what that means? There are people who supposedly pay less than this (though heavens knows where these people live) and there are also shedloads of people who pay more. Who pays more than the average amount of £370? Well ask yourself – how much did you pay for your insurance this year? I’ll wager it’s more than that – much more, if you happen to make a living driving a van or if you’re a younger driver. Heaven help you if you’re both!
Younger drivers are absolutely raked over the coals by insurers. In fact insurance companies charge younger Brits so much that they’re often priced right out of keeping a vehicle unless they get some help from their parents; unfortunately there’s a growing trend where well-meaning parents actually end up breaking the law by putting their children on their own policies as a secondary driver even when they’re not.
It’s called fronting, and it’s quite illegal. Apparently insurers don’t like it when you tell them a car is being driven only occasionally by a secondary driver and then in actuality is driven every day by them instead. Being caught fronting can invalidate the insurance for that car, and that could mean a big repair bill that you’ll have to pay out-of-pocket if you get into an accident. It could also complicate things down the line when you try to get insurance cover on your own – insurers take a bit of a dim view of the activity.
I know it’s illegal but what else are younger Brits supposed to do if their premiums are so high as to be completely unaffordable? No, I’m not condoning the behaviour, but I can say that I understand it implicitly.