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Factors Which Affect Your Motor Insurance Calculation

There are a number of factors that will affect the way your insurance premium is calculated. For example the type of car, who will drive it, where it is kept, the uses to which it is put, and the level of cover required by the driver.

Changes in your circumstances

You must inform the company that insures you of any change that will affect your policy*, such as change of address, any modifications to the car or motoring offences, including fixed penalties. If you fail to report any changes your motor insurance policy could be invalid.

*Please note that is an offence under the Road Traffic Act to make a false statement or withhold information for the purposes of obtaining a certificate of motor insurance.

Who will drive?

The policy may only cover driving by yourself or specified people, or it may allow driving by any qualified person with your permission, possibly over a certain age limit. Your insurers will want to know about anyone who is likely to drive - particularly their age, experience, driving record and occupation.

All insurance policies require you to make sure your car is in a roadworthy condition, hence the reason you require MOT certificate along with a valid insurance policy. If you don't, you may find that your claim will not be paid.

Level of cover

Most private motorists opt for Comprehensive insurance, with the remainder generally choosing Third Party Fire and Theft. If your car is not normally kept in a garage at night, theft cover may be excluded or subject to special conditions. There may be an excess- a part of the cost of the claim for which you are responsible - following an incident of theft. If you are selling your car make sure you have payment before parting with it. Your insurance policy will not cover your loss if your car is taken from you by deception.

Third Party insurance covers liability for injuries to other people, including passengers, liability for damage to other people's property, liability of passengers for accidents caused by them and liability arising from the use of a caravan or trailer, while attached to the car. 

Comprehensive cover includes all the above plus accidental damage to your own car (which may include an excess), a personal accident benefit, where certain amounts are paid in the event of the death or specific permanent disablement of the policyholder (and sometimes their spouse or a family member), medical expenses necessarily incurred, up to a stated limit and loss of, or damage to, personal effects in the car, up to a stated limit.

The car make and model

Family cars with moderate repair costs are cheaper to insure than large or powerful cars, which can be expensive to repair. Each model is given an insurance group rating from 1 to 20. Higher groups mean higher premiums. Older cars often attract discounts from comprehensive insurance premiums

Your postcode

Insurance claims are more frequent in urban areas so motorists in cities usually pay more for their insurance than those who live in the country. The place where the car is kept is a rating factor, so tell your insurers if the car is not kept at your home address.

Use of the car

Your policy and certificate also specify the uses for which your car is insured and most policies cover the policyholder in person while driving a car which belongs to someone else. However, cover will be limited to third party only, even if you have a comprehensive policy. Accidental damage to the borrowed car will not be covered by your insurance. You must tell your insurers if you change your car. A premium adjustment may be necessary and in some cases you will need a new certificate.

Claims history

Policyholders with a claim free record normally qualify for a premium discount. Scales do vary but usually range from 30% for one claim free year up to 60% or more after four or five years.

Protected Discount policies are often available for motorists with maximum discounts. For an extra premium, a number of claims are allowed without affecting the discount. Typically two claims are allowed in a three or five year period.

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