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Teens & Car Insurance: How to Cut Costs

It will be cheaper to have the teenager listed as a secondary driver for the least expensive vehicle the family owns, though that will not prevent the teen from driving other vehicles, or restrict the amount of driving.

Passing a driver’s education course approved by the state will also reduce the teen’s insurance premium, as will good grades. Good students are not necessarily better drivers right away, but they tend to become more desirable customers later, so insurers like to start building customer loyalty early.

You can also reduce premium costs by raising your deductibles, or the amount you have to pay before a claim will take over. Some experts suggest not filing claims for minor fender benders, to avoid an increase in the premium.

Once the teen starts driving, the family should focus on avoiding incidents like tickets and accidents that can drive premiums up. That obviously means no drinking, talking on the cell phone or texting while driving.

The risk of accidents can also be reduced by barring the teen from chauffeuring a carful of raucous friends. One friend at a time is enough. Some families also place restrictions on driving during accident-prone times like Friday and Saturday night. Even simple things can help, like keeping windows and mirrors clean, and keeping the tires at the proper pressure so the vehicle handles well.

And remember there’s nothing to prevent a parent from insisting on a touch-up driving lesson from time to time, to make sure the teen isn’t getting sloppy or over-confident. People who have been driving for six months or a year may take more risks than beginners who adhere to all the rules.

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