Nationwide Building Society

Nationwide Building Society

August 04, 2005 06:15 ET

Nationwide - Steer away from car insurance increases

SWINDON, ENGLAND--(CCNMatthews - Aug. 04, 2005) -

John Baker
Head of General Insurance, Nationwide

When shopping around for car insurance, a few simple steps not only cut the costs, but also cut the risk of vehicle damage and crime.

When you ask for a car insurance quote, you'll be asked to supply information about yourself and your vehicle. These details give insurers a picture of how likely you are to have an accident or make a claim and this then determines the premium. It is important to give the right information so write it down before your meeting or call. If you get it wrong, it could invalidate your cover. However many motorists probably aren't aware that there are things they can do to reduce the cost of their premium.

How you can reduce your premium

* Park in a locked garage, not on the street or on a driveway.
* Average annual mileage is around 8,300, but if you know you do less than this you can agree to limit your annual mileage in exchange for a lower premium.
* Don't have other drivers on the policy, or ensure they are experienced drivers with no claims.
* Decide if you want fully comprehensive or third party fire and theft cover. Around 15% of drivers who insure with Nationwide choose third party fire and theft which is cheaper, but be aware you don't get the same reassurance - for example your car will not be covered in the event of an accident and your windscreen will not be covered.
* Most insurers have a standard excess on the policy which means that if you have an accident, you will pay the first part of any of the costs. Reduce your premium by increasing the voluntary excess.
* Protect your no claims bonus by paying a little extra. This will help keep your premiums low in future years.

There are some aspects of car insurance premiums which you can do very little to change:

* Where you live - in the town or the country? If you live in a rural area you'll typically have cheaper premiums than townies, largely because car crime is greater in built-up areas.
* What you drive - Panda or Porsche? The type of car you drive and how old it is will give the insurer an idea of the cost of any possible damage. It is easy to find out which insurance group your car is in -for example, you can ask the dealer when buying the car or do an internet search.
* How old you are and how long you've been driving - age and experience? Sadly you can't do anything about these two, however typically older drivers (over 25s) and those who've held their license for a long time are statistically safer drivers and therefore get cheaper insurance.
* Previous claims? You have to tell your insurer about any claims you have made in the last three years.

Choosing a reputable car insurance provider, which can offer not just high quality cover, but also a competitive premium is achievable, especially if you think of ways you can help yourself to lower the premium. Nationwide's car insurance price promise gives customers extra peace of mind that they are getting a low cost, but high quality level of cover.

-ends-

Features of Nationwide Car Insurance:
* Price Promise - if a customer buys from Nationwide and then finds a better quote the difference will be refunded
* Automatic cover for driving in Europe for visits of up to 90 days
* 24 hour emergency assistance helplines
* A nationwide network of approved repairers for fast, professional repairs
* Replacement car whilst the damaged car is being repaired through one of Nationwide's approved repairers
* Up to 65% no claim discount
* Legal assistance available at low cost
* Breakdown cover from as little as GBP2.92 per month

Nationwide car insurance is available to consumers through the following channels:
* Online (with 10% online discount until end of September) - visit www.nationwide.co.uk/insurance for online quotations and to make an application
* Telephone - phone 0500 30 20 19 for quotations and to make an application

Nationwide car insurance is administered and underwritten by Churchill Insurance Company Ltd.

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