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Young driver car insurance tops £4,000

An L plate on a blue carConfused.com’s latest car insurance price index has revealed the average cost of cover for single men aged 17 to 20 is now more than £4,000.

Car insurance costs for young male drivers have crashed through the £4,000 barrier for the first time, with 17 to 20-year-old single men now paying an average of £4,006 for annual comprehensive cover.

Meanwhile, women aged 17 to 20 face paying £2,151 for the same cover, according to the the quarterly Confused.com/Towers Watson Car Insurance Price Index.

Costs are even more eye-watering for males in this age group living in the Manchester and Merseyside region who pay an average of £5,633 for annual comprehensive cover.

Their female counterparts who live in outer London face the highest costs - £3,382.

The male/female car insurance price divide is set to even out in December 2012, when it becomes illegal for insurers to calculate premiums based on gender but for now the battle of the sexes is still rife where cost is concerned.

Save money – tie the knot

However, there is one way young drivers can cut costs – get married.

According to the statistics, single males aged between 17 and 20 who add a spouse to their policy can knock a hefty £1,000 off their policy cost.

Females looking to do the same would see the cost of cover fall to £1,924.

But, if you’re amonng the majority of 17 to 20-year-olds who aren’t looking to tie the knot, the best and simplest way to cut costs is to shop around.

Gareth Kloet, head of motor at Confused.com, said: “For young male drivers it has never been more important to shop around for the best price.

“Our consumer research shows that 50 per cent of under 25s could save up to £556 on car insurance* by using Confused.com. This is one way to help combat these rises.”       

Prices rises slow

The average price of a comprehensive policy for male and female drivers aged 17 to 20 went up 1.5 per cent across the UK between April and June 2011.

But there is some good news for drivers because the price rises are slowing - down from 4.1 per cent between January and March 2011.

The annual rate of price inflation for comprehensive cover for drivers in this age bracket is now 24.2 per cent.

The cost of comprehensive cover still works out as cheaper than third-party, fire and theft, which is up 33 per cent in the last year.

There are a number of ways you can look to lower the cost of your cover.

Don’t overestimate your mileage

Mileage is one of the rating factors insurers use to calculate a person’s premium so it pays to spend a little time trying to estimate as best as you can how many miles you’re likely to drive each year. Bear in mind that underestimating your mileage could invalidate your insurance policy when it comes to making a claim.

Higher excess, lower premium

Consider a higher voluntary excess to cut your annual premium. This is an amount you choose to pay in the event of a claim. In return for opting for a higher excess, the insurance provider will usually lower the premium. But don’t forget that the voluntary excess will always be paid in addition to any compulsory excess.

Value your vehicle accurately 

It’s incorrect to assume the higher you value your car the more money you’ll receive in the event of a claim. Insurers will only pay out the current market value of the vehicle so inflating the value of your vehicle serves no purpose other than increasing your car insurance premium.

Find out more about the latest car insurance price rises. You can also use our interactive map to see how your costs compare with other parts of the UK

*Based on online independent research, Consumer Intelligence (May ’11). 50 per cent of consumers, aged 17 - 25, could make this saving.

Please watch our 30-second guide for more information.




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Naphtalia Loderick

Naphtalia Loderick

Naphtalia Loderick reports on all things personal finance at Confused.com. She started out on a weekly newspaper, via a national news agency and a stint in the fun but ‘not as glamorous as it appears on screen’ world of TV at the BBC researching consumer films for The One Show.

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