Many car owners fret when the time comes to renew their car insurance, though it is a once-a-year thing. Many also have to check their account balance before renewing their car insurance. Undoubtedly, the price of car insurance can burden car owners. Coupled with road tax, car maintenance and emergencies, car owners need to be savvy in managing their finances and finding ways to save as much money as possible.
But fret not as we will help ease your burden. In this entry, we share five tips to save money when renewing car insurance.
Choose the right sum insured for your car (not more or less)
Sum insured is the maximum amount of car insurance coverage. You can choose the sum insured for your car according to its market value or agreed value. Check out our past article to know how to determine the right sum insured for your car.
To save your money, choose a sum insured that is not more or less than the market value of your car. Assume that you own a Proton Saga with a market value of RM33,000. Your sum insured should be RM33,000 and not a penny more. Note that you are not recommended to choose a sum insured below the market value.
Choose either the market value or agreed value
Though you wish to save more on car insurance, remember not to insure your car below the market value. Under-insurance will work to your disadvantage if your vehicle runs into an accident. But how can it be disadvantageous when you can save more on your car insurance premium? Hear us out.
Say that your car runs into an accident, your insurer will reduce the amount of your insurance claim. If the sum insured of your vehicle is 30% less than the market value, your insurer will only pay 70% of the total cost of repairing your car.
Suppose the total cost of repairing your car is RM10,000. Your insurance will only pay 70% or RM7,000. How about the remaining 30% or RM3,000? That is for you to bear.
Hence, please follow the market value of your car. You can check the market value of your car for free at MyCarInfo.
Additionally, you can opt for the agreed value if you have a bigger budget. If your car runs into an accident and is certified a total loss, the compensation you will get is the value agreed during your insurance renewal. The value is not affected by the market value of your car at the time of the accident. If the agreed value of your vehicle is RM100,000, then RM100,000 is what you will get as compensation. On the other hand, if you choose the market value, your compensation will depend on the market value at the time of the accident. The market value of a car typically depreciates by 10-15% every year.
Get only additional coverages that you need
As you may already know, there are three types of car insurance that you can choose: (1) comprehensive insurance, (2) third party, fire and theft insurance, and (3) third party insurance. Check out our past article to understand the three types of car insurance.
Generally, you are advised to purchase comprehensive insurance as it offers the most comprehensive coverage. However, the premium for comprehensive insurance is higher than third party, fire and theft insurance, and third party insurance. Additionally, your premium will get even higher if you decide to get additional coverages. So, how do you save?
The most economical way is not to take any additional coverage. But do think this through. Taking additional coverages can help you in an untoward incident. Say that you own a Proton Saga 1.3 Auto released in 2020. If your windscreen cracks due to a pebble, the windscreen and labour cost to replace it can reach RM1,000! However, if you purchase windscreen cover, you only have to pay 15% of the amount, equivalent to RM150.
A better way is to take only necessary additional coverages. You may not need special perils cover or riots coverage if you live in a low-risk area. You may also not need car accessories coverage if you do not upgrade your car accessories. To help you decide, read on additional car insurance covers in our past article.
Keep a clean driving record
Did you know that your claim history affects your insurance premium?
If your car runs into an accident where you are at fault, you will lose your No Claim Discount (NCD) after your claim. What is NCD?
NCD is a type of reward in the form of a discount offered by insurance companies to car owners who do not make any claims within a year. So, if you do not make any claims, the discount you can enjoy will be higher every year up to a maximum of 55%.
Imagine having accumulated 55% of NCD because of a clean driving record over six years. If your actual insurance premium is RM925.02, for example, you only have to pay RM55% or RM508.76 of that value! But imagine that your car crashes, and you are proven guilty. You will lose your NCD and have to pay RM925.02 for your insurance. That is RM416.26 of loss, which is no small amount.
So, be careful on the road for your safety and other road users. This is also so you can save on your car insurance.
On a side note, ensure that the person authorised to drive your car has a good driving record!
Increase the amount of voluntary excess
Excess is the first amount you have to pay for every claim approved by your insurance company, even if the incident is not your fault. Note that the excess does not apply to loss or damage caused by fire, explosion, lightning, burglary, housebreaking, theft,
third party property damage or bodily injury claims.
Generally, a higher excess amount will cause your premium amount to be lower, and vice versa. There are two types of excess that you need to know:
1. Compulsory excess (fixed amount of RM400)
You must bear the compulsory excess of RM400 if you or the person driving your car:
- is less than 21 years of age;
- holds a temporary (P) or probationary (L) driving license; or
- is not named in the policy schedule as a named driver.
2. Voluntary excess (the amount can be increased subject to the insurance company)
Voluntary excess refers to the amount of excess written in your insurance policy chosen by you in addition to any standard or compulsory excess that may apply. You can reduce your premium by selecting a voluntary excess.
Depending on your insurance, you can ask to increase the voluntary excess amount to get a lower premium. However, please note that while a higher voluntary excess will reduce your premium, you would have a larger amount to pay in the event of a claim. So, going back to our earlier point, do keep a clean driving record!
Compare car insurance prices
You are strongly encouraged to compare a range of car insurance prices before buying any insurance. This is the easiest and most practical step to save on car insurance.
In case you did not know, starting July 1, 2017, Bank Negara Malaysia has implemented motor insurance tariff liberalisation. Following the liberalisation, the premium rates for comprehensive insurance and third party, fire and theft insurance are determined by the respective insurance or takaful companies (Third party insurance premium rates continue to be subject to tariff rates.) What does this liberalisation mean to you?
As a consumer or policyholder, you can get various benefits and insurance prices. Some insurance or takaful companies also offer various attractive benefits at attractive prices. So, you can shop around before buying car insurance to get the best coverage and benefits at the best price!
What is the easiest platform to compare car insurance prices?
There is no need for you to leave your house to compare insurance. Just take out your smartphone and visit online insurance comparison sites like Bjak. All you have to do is use Bjak, which will provide you with quotes from 15 insurance companies, all on a single platform. Once you get the quotes, compare them all and choose the one that best suits your budget and needs.
Use Bjak to save more on car insurance
We have shared how you can save more when renewing car insurance. We hope the above tips can help you secure a suitable and affordable insurance policy.
To help you further, we recommend using insurance comparison sites such as Bjak to compare coverages, benefits and insurance prices for up to 15 leading insurance brands. More interesting is that you can customise your insurance according to your needs and budget entirely online. Do not delay. Visit Bjak to get free car insurance quotes.