8 unusual factors that affect your car insurance

Following the recent news of a vicar whose car insurance policy is under threat of being voided because she didn’t declare stickers on the car as modifications. Rod Jones, insurance expert at uSwitch outlines the little known factors that can make a big difference on your insurance premium.

1. Your credit report

When deciding whether to offer you a policy, insurers can check your credit score and use this information to decide on your ability to pay by monthly direct debit. Your credit report details all your financial history and a low score can mean insurers are less likely to offer you the options to spread your payment over several months. Find out how to get your credit score in good shape here.

2. Your job

Your occupation can have a massive impact not only on the price of your premium but also your ability to make a claim. If your job changes in the middle of your policy, it’s important to let your insurer know – different jobs come with different inherent risks and insurers rate them accordingly. In addition to this, if you come to claim and your job is different to the one listed, this could invalidate your policy.

3. Completing a speed awareness course

The more information you declare to your insurer the better. Even if you complete a speed awareness course rather than take points on your licence, some insurers will ask for this information when you apply and it could affect your premium.

4. Being involved in an accident that wasn’t your fault

If you are involved in an accident and neither party accepts blame, insurers put a note on your record that your claim is in dispute. This means that if your policy comes up for renewal during this period, your premium could go up, even if the accident was not your fault. Once the claim is resolved and you’re not longer at fault, it’s important to notify your insurer as you may be entitled to receive a refund on the higher premium you were paying.

5. Mileage

It makes sense that the more miles you drive, the higher your premium will be. Make sure you check your MOT certificate to make sure you don’t overestimate your average mileage and pay over the odds on your premium.

6. How the car is used

Whether you use your car for work or social purposes will affect how much your premium costs. For example, using a car for work could mean you travel long distances to commute or travel around during the day, whereas social use could mean you only drive evenings and weekend – both of which could have an effect on your premium.

7. Medical condition

If you have a medical condition that could affect your driving, you need to let your insurer know – if not, any time you come to claim your policy may be invalid.

8. Stickers on the car

Although seemingly harmless, insurance applications ask for any modifications to your car, including stickers, non-standard paintwork or decorations. These could still count as modifications and could attract unnecessary attention to your car, so it’s important to declare any changes to your insurer.

  • Check out our 5 tips to lower car insurance here.