Car insurance premiums falling

Car insurance premiums are falling, according to the latest information from the AA’s Insurance Price Index. The results show the average cost of car cover fell by 2.9% to £844 in the third quarter of 2012.

The index takes into account different customers’ risks and gives an average price of the cheapest five premiums sold by insurance companies directly.

Motor cover has been under the beady eye of the government for a while, with continuous car insurance laws being enforced. Now there are new plans to clamp down on fraudulent insurance claims too, set to be introduced next year.

False claims are a huge factor in rising car insurance costs, as companies have to recoup payouts from spurious personal injury claims somehow – by putting your premiums up.

The average small injury claim – including whiplash – stands at £8,400 and costs the industry a staggering £400 million per year.

Director of AA Insurance, Simon Douglas said: “The days of ‘open season’ for fraudulent injury claims, cash for crash and similar schemes are numbered.” Whether this will see insurance premiums drop still further is another matter…

Despite the recent AA results however, female drivers could soon see a sharp increase in cover costs.

Many women motorists have traditionally paid less for car insurance than men in the past, but a new European court of justice ruling coming into force on the 21st December this year, creating a gender-neutral pricing structure, will see premiums for female motorists rise by as much as 25%.

 

CLAMPDOWN ON CLOCKING LAUNCHED

Vehicle history checkers HPI has launched a clampdown on clocking – it’s still alive and well and we need to eradicate it, reckons the vehicle information service.

Clocking involves winding a vehicle’s milometer back to read less than a car has actually covered. Although it’s not illegal – only selling a car with a discrepant mileage is – it’s on the rise.

One in 20 cars in Britain have been clocked, according to HPI, up 10% over the last five years.

And now it’s launching an online petition to DirectGov in a bid to achieve 100,000 signatures and force a parliamentary debate on shutting down unscrupulous ‘mileage correction’ firms.

It’s thought that there’s around 50 companies in the UK that will give your car a ‘haircut’ – the slang for clocking in the trade – luring potential buyers into what on the face of things looks like a low mileage car.

There are telltale signs to look out for, however. Digits that don’t line up in the mileage display and a service book that doesn’t tally with a car’s displayed distance should set alarm bells ringing.

Have you unwittingly bought a clocked car, or walked away from a potential sale due to a dodgy mileage? We want to hear from you below.

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