Most teens cannot wait until they learn how to drive, get their
license and hit the open road. Unfortunately, finding auto insurance
can prove to be tricky. Having been in this position themselves, every
driver can understand the challenges of finding the right car
insurance – but the challenges can be compounded for young drivers.
teen drivers are three times more likely to have an auto
accident, the rates – at least initially – can be very expensive. However,
there are ways to keep young driver insurance costs lower, such as
adding them to an existing policy, seeking out discounts they qualify
for and teaching them safe driving habits that will eventually lead to
Car insurance policies for young drivers
No matter what state you live in, having young driver insurance
coverage is a must. Teens need to realize that it's a part of the
responsibility of owning or driving a vehicle;
it's not an option to go without car insurance. Most
insurance companies have special auto insurance for young drivers.
It's important to learn what the policies entail, including coverage
limits. Some parents add additional coverage when they seek car
insurance for teens as a precaution.
When should I consider purchasing auto insurance for my teen?
Purchasing auto insurance for teens typically occurs after they pass a
driving test and get their licenses. Before obtaining a driver's
license, young drivers with a learner's permit should also be covered
under an auto policy. Most auto policies will cover teens with a
learner's permit that are driving the car of an adult in the same
household, but it's never a bad idea to confirm coverage with your car
Most insurance agencies will require licensed drivers -- even teens --
living in the same household to be covered. Younger drivers are
typically added to their parent's policy as it's usually more
insurance laws do vary from state to state, so it's
always a good idea to speak to your agent about young driver insurance
as your child approaches driving age.
Teen driver insurance providers
Almost all insurance companies can underwrite a car insurance policy
for teens even though many new drivers end up on their parent's policy
as soon as they get their driver's license.
However, for young drivers who are shopping for their own car
insurance, it's a good idea to research the companies that are within
your coverage area.
Once you've narrowed down your selections, it's time to consider the
factors that go into making a final decision on what constitutes the
best young driver insurance for you.
Factors to consider when choosing an insurance provider
Price - this is probably the single most important
factor that teen drivers or their parents consider, and for good
reason. As younger drivers are generally inexperienced, auto
insurance rates for teens are often higher than those of an
established driver. For this reason, it's advisable to shop around
for the best price, but don't rely on this factor alone.
Coverage – another important factor when
considering a young driver insurance policy is the amount of
coverage provided. There is no one-size-fits-all policy;
the factors that influence the decision of how much coverage should
be purchased differ from person to person. Some drivers only need
collision coverage while others will need a comprehensive policy.
However, for younger drivers, it is advisable to have a higher level
of coverage, even if they drive a car that has already been paid for
in full. Look for higher deductibles on car
insurance for teens as that often lowers the monthly rate.
Customer service – not all auto insurance companies
are created equal. Some are well touted for their attention to
detail and excellent customer service skills, especially when
handling car insurance for young drivers. It's important to research
companies and individual agents, to see what others have experienced
when dealing with a claim or policy change request.
Discount programs – everyone loves to save money,
and teens and their parents are no exception. When shopping for
young driver insurance, ask your agent about any qualifying
discounts that may be available. These can help drop the rates, in
some cases significantly.
The cost of insuring young drivers
There are several considerations that go into the cost of insuring
young drivers. The amount of driving experience, the type of license
they have, and the make and model of their vehicle are three things at
which insurance companies look. Typically, a longer driving history
and clean record will lower rates. Most young drivers operate with a
license to drive personal vehicles, but drivers with a license to
operate larger vehicles such as busses and trucks with heavy towing
capabilities may pay higher premiums for insurance as their vehicles
and towed items may cost more to cover. Newer cars can also increase
the cost of insurance because of the greater value of the vehicle
compared to older models.
Adding to an existing policy - Parents who opt to
add their young drivers onto their existing policy will see an
increase in their overall insurance premium. However, it's easier
for new, inexperienced drivers to become insured this way. The young
driver insurance policy cost won't increase as much if the child is
driving mom or dad's car. If they are driving their own vehicle, the
existing rate could increase by a few hundred dollars a month.
Opening a new policy – Opening a new car insurance
policy for teens isn't often recommended because of the high cost.
Insurance companies consider these young drivers a higher risk and
as such, it's not uncommon for an auto insurance policy for teens to
cost upwards of a thousand dollars per year. Many teens can't afford
these rates, even if they are working full time. It's not impossible
to find affordable car insurance for teens, especially if the
vehicle being driven is older and doesn't require comprehensive
Saving on teen auto insurance
As with any young driver insurance policy,
there are ways for teens to reduce their rates. Let's
look at a few different ways to lower that bill.
Student discounts for good grades – insurance
companies like to reward teens who show responsibility and keep up
their grades. These discounts are typically offered to young drivers
between the ages of 16 and 24, though some insurance agencies may
have other ranges. While the grade requirement may vary between
providers, a common qualification for a good student discount is to
maintain a B average in high school or college, with proof of
grades. The amount or percentage discounted on car insurance for
young drivers varies per agency, but it's worth making an inquiry.
Loyalty discounts - loyalty discounts come as teens
and young drivers maintain their policies with a specific agency or
agent. The longer they keep a policy with the company and keep their
account in good standing, typically the better the discount.
Safe driver discounts - driving safely is a must
and insurance companies measure this by looking at the number of
traffic violation tickets and accidents a driver has. Even
teens can qualify for safe driver discounts on their
insurance policy if they maintain an impeccable record. Some
agencies even offer a tracker to reduce rates. You simply install it
in the car and the tracker monitors the driver's habits. Discounts
can be offered to those who follow the speed limits and traffic