Why is van insurance so expensive? It’s the most frequently asked question by every new van owner in town. If you’re used to paying car insurance premiums, you’d be flabbergasted by the seemingly hiked van insurance rates. But taking a look at it closely, a van insurance average cost UK is justifiable. And we’re going to prove to you why.
Does that mean it’s okay to pay hefty premiums especially if it’s your first van? No one likes digging deeper into their pockets. Read on to find clever tricks you could use to slash your van insurance premiums.
Why Is Van Insurance So Expensive?
Put yourself in the shoes of an insurer. You’d want to limit the number of claims or at least have enough funds to cover high-risk vehicles. It’s one of the ways insurance providers get to make more money. Unlike your compact saloon car, vans have bigger engines, are heavier and are always on the move.
Plus, their solid sides and more blind spots without rear-view mirrors are just a few of the things that increase susceptibility to accidents. Let’s take a deeper look at it.
High-risk Factors and Usage
We’ve already touched on this. But to make it clearer, vans often come with the most risks associated with ownership. Most of the owners often use them for commercial purposes like transporting goods, doing deliveries, et cetera. These types of activities contribute to higher mileage and increase exposure to risks on the road.
Plus, these vehicles have bigger sizes and weights, which are another contributor to higher risks of accidents. That is especially true in crowded areas. So, every insurer will consider all these and many other factors when issuing a van insurance quote.
Security Risks and Theft
You probably use your van for carrying valuable goods, tools, or personal items. So, that makes the vehicle a high target for thieves. According to figures from Herts Tool, the UK experienced 34,712 van theft between January 2021 and October 2022. This accounts for a 62% increase from combined reported thefts in 2019 and 2020.
With that information at hand, insurers have no option but to quote expensive van insurance for private use. If you need a cover for commercial use, the premiums will be even more expensive.
But one way you can mitigate the risks and potentially get the best van insurance premium quote is by installing alarms and GPS trackers. We’ll look deeper into this later.
The Driver’s Experience
In 2021, there were 1,279 cases of accidents involving younger car drivers (killed or seriously injured). This was an 8% increase compared to cases reported in 2020. Considering these incidents were from car drivers, the risks are more likely to be higher with vans.
How skilled are you in handling a van in a busy urban area? Insurers are going to look at your driving experience and history when issuing a quote. If a driver holds a track record of claims, the provider may classify them as a higher risk. And that would attract a higher premium.
Equally, it can be harder to get cheap van insurance for young drivers as they’re perceived to have a higher likelihood of causing accidents.
Insurance Group Ratings
Why is van insurance so expensive? Insurance group ratings are also another contributor. Insurance companies in the UK rely on a group rating system to calculate premiums for different models of vehicles.
Vans belonging to a higher group rating will have a more expensive premium since they’re costlier to repair and have higher performance. Before sealing the purchase deal, consider the insurance group rating of the van and the potential impact on the cost of insurance.
How To Get the Cheapest Van Insurance UK
Considering how costly van insurance can be, it’s crucial to ensure the deal that you get is the best out there. When it comes to securing the cheapest van insurance UK, you can tweak a couple of things to get a good deal. But some like your age, location, and van usage are beyond your might.
So, here are a couple of useful tips to employ and get the best van insurance in the UK.
1. Compare insurance quotes
Shopping around and comparing insurance quotes from different insurers is a prerequisite to getting a good premium. The prices can significantly vary, so compare van insurance from as many providers as you can and find the most suitable and competitive rate.
If you already have a plan with an insurer, ensure it’s not on auto-renew. This will give you room to shop around and get the best premium. Also, some providers often issue lower premiums for new signups. But once the cover expires and auto-renewal kicks in, the premium can skyrocket significantly.
2. Pay your premium annually
While paying your van insurance premiums in instalments every month seem more convenient, annual payment has the best reward. Most insurance providers will have discounts and offers for lump-sum premium payments. Seize this advantage to make your insurance cost lower.
Plus, monthly premiums are likely to be revised by insurers depending on different circumstances. Making an annual payment cautions you against unforeseen premium revisions.
3. Make your van anti-theft
If wondering why is van insurance so expensive, it’s because the vehicle attracts the attention of thieves more. So, if you make your van “anti-theft,” insurers will see it as low risk and therefore revise your premium downwards.
Install approved security devices such as alarms and GPS tracking systems to discourage theft. Add additional locks that best suit how you use your van. You may also opt for steering and pedal locks to make it even harder for thieves to drive.
Plus, choose a more secure parking lot for your van and you’ll be surprised by how it can help get you lower premiums. You can even use it as a bargaining tool when negotiating for better premiums.
4. Go for higher deductibles or excesses
Deductibles are the amounts you pay out of your pocket during a claim. With a higher deductible, insurers will be willing to lower the premium for you. Be careful though, don’t go for a deductible that will be a headache in case the van is involved in an accident.
Request the insurer to give you different excess options and how they affect your premium. Weigh the different options to settle for the best one.
5. Include van contents in your cover
While negotiating for the best van insurance premium, ask the insurer to include the van contents in the cover. This won’t reduce your insurance cost, but it ensures you get the best deal possible for every penny.
Plus, it’s a great caution against van content theft since some thieves only target what’s inside the vehicle.
6. Control the mileage, go for a limited mileage policy
The average UK car has an annual mileage lower than 15,000 miles. If you can predict and limit your van usage, opt for an insurance policy with restricted mileage that leads to reduced premiums. This can be a nice way of getting the cheapest van insurance UK especially if the vehicle won’t be on the road often.
If you use your van for personal errands, the restricted mileage policy may also be a good choice. Just ensure that you give the providers the most accurate mileage estimates.
7. Include low-risk drivers
As mentioned earlier, insurers will quote higher premiums depending on the history and experience level of drivers. So, you can use this to your advantage by including a low-risk driver in your policy. In most cases, drivers will tend to be more careful on the road when driving a vehicle with multiple users. Insurance providers know this, and they might give you a discount.
8. Take advanced driving lessons
Armed with advanced qualifications, you can get attractive discounts from specialist insurers. This is a nice way to get cheap van insurance for young drivers. Don’t forget to let the insurers know your advanced qualifications when you compare van insurance.
9. Install a dashcam
Most insurance providers will be willing to give you a discount if your van has a dashcam. That’s because video recording can be useful in settling disputes. So, the provider will be ready to extend a discount knowing that claims will always have proof. Take advantage of this by ensuring your dashcam is always working.
10. Get your insurance renewal early
Last-minute renewal often attracts more expensive premiums. Insurers know that you’re in a hurry to renew your coverage and don’t have the luxury to compare premiums. You can avoid paying hefty premiums by paying for your renewal one month before expiry.
Most insurers are willing to quote at most a month before the cover expiry date.
Answering the question “Why is van insurance so expensive?” in the UK is the first step towards finding ways of reducing your premiums. Remember that insurers will consider the experience of the driver, claims history, vehicle usage, insurance group, and several other things. Therefore, take a deeper look into these factors and many more mentioned in this article to negotiate for cheaper premium deals.