Those that own a fleet of vehicles can already save quite a lot of money on their vehicle insurance by purchasing ‘fleet insurance.’ Insurers are happy to offer reduced premiums if you are putting several vehicles under the same policy because they welcome the business and reduced paperwork.
However, there are several other smart techniques that can help you save money when insuring your fleet. After all, a premium is assessed on the potential risks of the driver making a claim – so any way you can reduce the risk of an accident, fire, flood or theft can lead to the insurer giving you a discounted price. Here are our top money-saving tips below:
1.Use a Comparison Website
You are already on the right track by using a broker or comparison website like ours. We have partnered up with Be Wiser who are an award-winning insurance broker. By using a comparison site, you get the privilege of lots of different rates and deals in one place, rather than going directly to the insurer and being limited to their products and pricing. Plus, you don’t have to go to each insurance company one-by-one to get a quote. Using a comparison site, you can get the cover to suit your needs and at the best price too. You can also gain access to introductory offers and bonuses too and free cover such as legal expenses and gadget cover.
2. Pay Annually, Not Monthly
Most insurers will charge you around 10% to 20% more for your insurance if you choose to pay monthly. Obviously, this can be more convenient as a way of managing cashflow but for the insurer it comes with more administration and they charge extra for this benefit. So when it comes to setting up your policy, choose to pay annually in one lump sum instead.
3.Pay More Voluntary Excess
Your excess is the amount of money you pay in order to release a claim on your insurance policy. This is usually a few hundreds pounds. So if you want to make a claim, you will need to pay a combination of your compulsory excess (around £200) which is set by your insurer and a voluntary excess where you can choose how much you wish to pay.
By choosing to pay a higher voluntary excess, it is a way of saying to the insurer that you are willing to fit more of the bill if you ever need to claim. As a way of saying thank you, they will lower your premium. This is one of the most common methods for lowering the cost of your insurance. As a business owner, you can request that some of your drivers to pay for their own voluntary excess as a way of saving money and it is also a way of saying ‘put your money where your mouth is’ – because if they believe that they are a safe driver and won’t crash, they should be willing to pay a higher voluntary excess short-term.
4.Increase Your Security Features
A big saving can be made on your insurance premium if you have security measures installed or around your vehicle. It is not only protecting the bikes, cars and vans you have but also the potentially valuable goods that you have inside, whether it is tools, equipment or precious cargo that you are carrying for other people.
Adding any additional security measures to your vehicles would be welcomed by your insurance provider that we put you in touch with. This is because it will prevent your vehicle from being stolen or make it easier to find in the event of theft. So if the vehicle and perpetrator can be found, it will reduce the need to make a claim and saving everyone money. Here are the most effective security measures to lower insurance:
- Immobiliser: This can be installed to your vehicle and it stops the engine from starting unless the correct key is used. This avoids your car being stolen due to hot-wiring or similar. This only costs around £85 for a basic car.
- Tracker: Using GPS, this can locate a vehicle if stolen and the information is automatically sent to the police too. The location of the tracker is usually in the front bonnet but very hard to detect and those with trackers will probably not realise that they have them.
- Garage: One of the simplest things to secure your fleet is simply keeping them in a locked garage overnight. It could therefore be better to keep all your vehicles in a garage rather than letting staff members keep them overnight – so you have to weight this up. This significantly reduces the risk of theft and if you can relay back to the insurer how they are kept and secured, you can receive a nice discount.
- CCTV: Adding cameras to your vans or the garages were you store them can act as a deterrent to potential thieves and vandals. In the event of a claim, you can prove to the insurer that something has been stolen and perhaps identity the thieves and retrieve any losses.
5.Add More Experienced Drivers To The Policy
Adding drivers with more experience on the road naturally adds more credibility to your policy and gives the insurer confidence that there will be less chance of an accident and claim being made. Since young drivers notoriously bring up the cost of insurance, you want more drivers on the policy aged 40 to 55. If there are young drivers responsible for a van or car you own, add an experienced driver with them and make them share the driving as this information will allow the insurer to give you a lower premium.
6. Extra Driving Courses For Drivers
For any drivers on your fleet and young drivers specifically, any additional driving courses will be encouraged by insurers. With courses at around £200 per person, applicants learn several vital skills that will reduce future accidents and improve their quality as drivers. This includes:
- Driving in bad weather
- Van manoeuvres
- Handing with loads
- Advanced mirror use
- Space awareness
This technology has proven very successful over the years as a way of saving money on insurance. It starts with adding a telematics box which is a little black box the size of an iPhone and attaching this to the dashboard of your car, just under your glove compartment. Using GPS, it monitors the distance you travel but also the quality of your driving such as braking, accelerating, speed and turning. The idea is that the data is collected and made available to you and your insurer and if it shows that you have been driving safely, the insurer feels more confident in your driving ability and can reward you with a cheaper policy or refund.
Since it also tracks mileage, you could save money on that alone. Your initial premiums are based heavily on the amount of miles you are going to drive but if the telematics box shows that you actually did a lot less than predicted, you can receive a discount. Be aware that it can work the other way so if you drive more than expected and it turns out that your drivers are more dangerous drivers too, you could be charged more.
8. No Claims Bonus
If you can avoid making a claim for several years, your insurer will give you a hefty discount and this will increase year-after-year. This is the insurance company’s way of rewarding you and saying thank you for being a safer driver. This is a huge incentive because after around 5 years, you can receive a discount on your insurance for as much as 65% to 85%, depending on the insurer. There are also some insurers that we work with that offer ‘introductory no claims bonuses’ so even if it is your first year being insured by them, they can still give you a discount based on a good track record. There is also accelerated bonuses where you can achieve a one year discount after just 9 months of claim-free driving.
9. Avoid Young Drivers
Those classed as ‘young drivers’ aged under 25 years are notoriously more expensive to insure because statistically they are more likely to have an accident. The RAC reported that 18.2% of accidents involve drivers aged 17 to 19, despite making 1.5% of drivers on the road. So if you are using your vehicles for business purposes, which is common for a fleet, you can try restricting the usage for young drivers or encourage them to use their own vehicles and offer other benefits like petrol allowances.
10. Avoid Making Claims
This might seem like an obvious one, but as soon as you make a claim on your vehicle, your insurance skyrockets and you may lose your no claims bonus. However, there are some insurers who allow you to make one or two claims a year and still keep your no claims discount in tact.
There are ways to avoid making claims and the obvious way is being a safer trip and avoiding busy roads and rush-hour traffic. If there are small dings, dents and repairs that need to be made, it could be worth paying for these out of your own pocket, even if they cost a few hundred pounds, because if you claimed for them, it would be even more expensive to pay the excess and then future higher insurance premiums.