A young bricklayer by the name of Gary Shipp has been quoted £40,000 for van insurance by a leading online comparison site.
Mr Shipp, who is 18 and comes from Oldham, had been looking into starting up his own bricklaying and building venture, but was stopped in his tracks when he saw just how much money van insurance was going to cost him.
I thought we are supposed to be encouraging young people to start their own businesses and take the path of entrepreneurship? Obviously not.
Sure, you can expect a younger driver who has only recently passed their test to be quoted a bit more than someone with a proven track record of driving safety, but is £40,000 a bit too much? I think it is. It pretty much makes it impossible for this guy to make any profit for the first few years of business, which in turn would mean the business will fail.
However, it’s good to hear that Mr Shipp is not letting this stumbling block stop him from doing something. Although it’s not ideal, he has been using his Vauxhall Astra car to transport his equipment to and from different jobs, as he starts the task of getting new clients and making a name for himself in the local area.
Good on him I say. Many people would use that ridiculously high van insurance quote as a reason to give up on their dream and stay in their job, but this guy is not letting anything stop him, even if he has to pile a load of bricks into his Astra and drive around town.
While it is shocking to see such a high quote for van insurance, it really is the norm unfortunately for people under the age of 25. Yes, it is possible to see the point of view of the insurance companies, as they want to reduce their risk as much as possible, and maybe they just don’t feel confident insuring someone that is 18.
Ultimately though, everybody has to start somewhere, and if an 18 year old wants to get started in their own business they should be helped to do that now, and not when they are over 25 and considered to be more responsible.
Looking at both sides of the story here, in my opinion, I think some kind of trial period with the use of telematics could be a good idea, where younger drivers are given a few months to prove themselves as safe and responsible commercial drivers, and then once the trial period is over and the insurance company is happy with the data, the driver is offered a more reasonable quote.