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21 May 2020
Chris Torney Chris Torney

The top 10 car insurance myths

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Beware of these common misconceptions before you get a car insurance policy, as you might get caught out later on.

Shopping around to get the best car insurance quote is one of the best ways to save money on cover, and that’s a fact.

But there are a lot of misunderstandings about car cover which could mean you pay more than you need to.

READ MORE: Car insurance buyers guide, no claims bonus explained

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Myth 1: You’re automatically insured to drive other cars if you have a comprehensive policy

This may be the case on some policies, but it doesn’t apply every time.

Driving-other-cars (DOC) cover is unlikely to be extended to the under-25s, and may also depend on your occupation.

READ MORE: Driving other cars on your car insurance

Myth 2: Your renewal price is guaranteed to be cheaper than the prices your insurer offers to new customers

Sadly this isn’t the case. Car insurance renewal premiums and premiums for new customers are often calculated differently.

That’s why it’s worth comparing prices every time – you might be able to grab a lower-priced policy as a new customer

Myth 3: Garaging your car means cheaper premiums

Oddly enough, this isn’t always the case either.

In some cases, a car parked in a garage overnight can be riskier than parking it out in the street.

This is all down to statistics – it could be that a particular area has a higher number of accidents due to people hitting their car while parking in a garage.

READ MORE: Top tips for cheaper car insurance

Myth 4: Driving for business use means higher premiums than social or commuting use

This isn’t always true. People who use their car for business may have more to lose if they damage their car.

They’re assumed to take better care of it than someone who just uses it for the school run, and so may not necessarily have a higher price.

READ MORE: Classes of use explained

Myth 5: Once you reach 25 your premiums fall dramatically

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It’s the golden age for young drivers everywhere – once you hit 25, you suddenly get cheap car insurance. Right?

Sadly, this isn’t the case. Although age is a key factor in working out prices, it’s just one of many factors that make up how much you pay.

READ MORE: Car insurance price index

Myth 6: Third-party cover is cheaper than comprehensive

It stands to reason that if you have a downgraded level of cover, you pay less for it.

Nope. Some insurers have raised premiums for third-party only or third-party, fire and theft cover because of the number of higher-risk drivers who sign up for these kinds of policy.

READ MORE: Car insurance policy types

Myth 7: Non-fault claims won’t affect your insurance premium

This is a weird one. You’d think that if an accident wasn’t your fault, then the other person’s insurance would go up, not yours.

In fact, statistics show that after having a non-fault claim you are more likely to have a fault claim not long after.

READ MORE: When to make a claim on your car insurance

Myth 8: You’re always guaranteed a courtesy car if you have an accident

A courtesy car is likely to be subject to availability. And in most cases it’s only offered if the car is repairable and taken to an insurers’ approved mechanic.

If the car is stolen or written off, a courtesy car isn’t always provided. At this point, you may wish you'd chosen hire car as an add-on when taking out the policy.

READ MORE: Top cheap cars to insure

Myth 9: I don’t have to tell my insurer about convictions that aren’t on my licence anymore

Most insurers ask if you’ve had any convictions within the last five years.

In some cases the conviction might no longer be valid, but you still need to declare that to your insurer - eg speeding convictions that are spent after four years.

READ MORE: Would you ever lie to get cheaper car insurance?

Myth 10: Your insurance covers you for any accident that you cause

Usually, but not always. If you crashed and were convicted of drink-driving, your insurer would be likely to turn down your claim.

The same applies if you were negligent or caused the damage intentionally.

READ MORE: Drink driving - what you need to know

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