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3 steps to reduce your teen's auto insurance costs

You may be dreading the day your child is older enough to drive. And you have a good reason to be worried. When you add a teen driver to your car insurance policy, your premium can spike anywhere from 50 percent to as much as 200 percent. Insuring someone without driving experience is risky business. Among 16- to 19-year-olds the risk of having a crash is higher than among any other age group. And they are four times more likely than older drivers to be in an accident for each mile they drive, according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. Before you apply for auto insurance quotes, follow these steps to lower your rates.

3 steps to reduce teen auto insurance costs3 ways to reduce your teen's auto insurance costs

1. Enroll your teen in a driver’s ed course. You may be able to cut your premium by 5 to 15 percent by making sure your teen is enrolled in a driver’s ed class. Most high-school courses offer six to eight hours of instruction. In some states, teens must take this course, if they want to get a license when they turn 16. Otherwise, they have to wait until they are 18. While longer-term courses are more effective in reducing accidents, these classes are a good start – and they give you a break on your auto insurance rates. Some insurers offer safe driver programs for teens. If your teenager completes the program, you may be eligible for a discount. In addition, some insurance companies now offer discounts for parents and teens who install GPS tracking devices in their cars. If you do your research, you may be able to lower auto insurance costs for your teen driver. Ask about these discounts, when you apply for auto insurance quotes.

2. Talk to your teen about the dangers of driving and drinking. In the U.S, vehicle the leading cause of death for teens is dying in a vehicle crash, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Each year, more than 5,000 young adults between the ages of 16 and 20 are killed in accidents. Teens are at far greater risk of dying in an alcohol-related crash than the overall population, even though they aren’t legally old enough to drink. Among 15- to 20-year-old drivers involved in fatal crashes in 2006, 31 percent of the drivers who were killed had been drinking, according to the NHTSA. Set a good example for your teen. Always wear your seat belt and never drink and drive.

3. Find out how your insurer assigns cars drivers to cars. To cover the added risk of insuring younger drivers some insurers will assign the driver who's the most expensive to insure to the car that's the most expensive to insure. That means your teenager will be assigned to your family’s newest and most valuable vehicle. If this is the case with your insurer, it may be cheaper for you to buy your kid a “beater,” an old car with high mileage. If, however, your insurer gives you the option to assign drivers to your family’s cars, then designate your teen as the driver of your older vehicles. Generally, it is cheaper to add your teen to your policy than to buy a separate one. Also, by adding your teen’s car to your insurance, you are eligible for a multi-vehicle discount. Ask about this discount, when you apply for auto insurance quotes.

How to get lower auto insurance rates for your teen

Before your teenager gets behind the wheel, research auto insurance policies for young drivers. Once you have done your research, you are ready to shop around for lower auto insurance rates. You can call agents in your local area, contact insurance companies directly or use to instantly get competitive auto insurance quotes from the nation’s leading insurance providers. Simply fill out a simple online form on to find the right insurance coverage at the best possible price. Take the time to protect you and your family today.

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