What to Look for When Buying Your Teen Car Insurance

How to save money on your teen driver's auto insurance coverage.
By Zach Bowman, DriverSide Contributor
Adding an inexperienced driver to your automotive policy doesn't always mean higher premiums. Most insurance companies offer a variety of discounts for teenagers, and if those fail to bring your monthly bill down, there's another option to consider - letting your son or daughter shoulder their own car insurance coverage.

Check for Discounts
But before giving your progeny the boot from the family policy, ask your insurer about options for lowering your teen's portion of the bill. Some companies will allow your younger wheelman to participate in driving classes to ease the premium pressure. Others will give breaks based on good grades. The point is you never know what's out there until you ask.

Allowing your teen to share your policy will let them benefit from any discounts you receive from multiple vehicles, a good driving record or your older age. Be careful though, as any claims your teen may have to make will reflect on your insurance record.

For the most part, younger drivers are charged more for insurance based purely on statistics. Experience is the corner stone to staying out of an accident, and since your teen probably has more songs on iTunes than they do hours of driving experience, they're more likely to get into a fender bender. As a result, the insurance company knows it is more likely to have to pay out at some point during your child's learning curve.

Forging Out on Their Own
If adding your child to your policy is too much of a burden to bear, don't worry about making them get their own coverage. Shopping for insurance, handling the bill and being aware of the financial consequences of their driving habits are all good lessons that stem from a teen owning their own policy. Who knows, it might even cause your kid to get a job.

Depending on the types of cars you own and the vehicle your son or daughter drives, it's possible that your teen may even save money by getting their own policy. While you know that there's no way your teen will get behind the wheel of your new sports car while you're still breathing, the insurance company knows that miracles - and mistakes - happen. Both you and your child may pay for your taste in high dollar machinery.

When your kid comes to you looking for the keys, it's best to put aside the panic in favor of a calm conversation. Lay out the pros and cons of covering them via your policy and getting their own, as well as the ramifications of bruising their driving record. Don't be surprised if they vote to get their own coverage. After all, it's one thing to be in trouble with your insurance. It's something entirely different to be in trouble with Mom and Dad.

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