When you buy a car and you need to take out a loan to do so, make sure that you’re aware of all the running costs attached to the car beyond the actual purchase price. It’s impossible to own and use a car without insurance and road tax for example, so you should check out how much these are going to cost and decide whether you need the loan increased to cover these extras.
In the UK, all cars and vehicles fall into different insurance groups – depending on the make and model. If your car is a basic model that doesn’t have a high replacement value, then it will be in a lower – and cheaper – insurance group than one that is capable of high speeds and has a high replacement cost attached.
It’s not just about replacement value – a hybrid car may be more expensive to insure because it requires specialist parts, for example.
As well as checking which insurance group your prospective new car is in, you should also remember that other factors affect the cost of your insurance premium.
No claims bonuses can help lower the amount. One year of no claims bonus can lower the premium by about a third.
A younger driver can take the pass plus driving test to reduce their insurance premium. Although taking the test costs about £100, you could save much more on your premium by passing it.
Different levels of cover have different price tags – obviously fully comprehensive is the most expensive, and third party, fire and theft the cheapest.
Some insurance companies specialise in certain types of vehicle, and offer better rates for that kind of cover. For example, new eco cars are sometimes covered with specialist policies by insurers who recognise that their owners tend to be safer drivers who are more mature, and therefore less of a risk factor behind the wheel.
Before agreeing on a car purchase, or the loan amount you’ll need, check out all the running costs associated with it, otherwise you could be in for an unwelcome surprise.