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Auto Insurance: Insuring Your Teen

Most teen drivers, immature and inexperienced behind the wheel, take risks on the road far more often than their adult counterparts. Because of this dangerous behavior, adding your teenager to your auto insurance policy will no doubt cause your rates to rise.

But some car insurance companies don't leave it at that. Some teenagers drive more carefully than others and are deemed lower-than-average risks. Add one of these teens to your auto insurance policy and your insurer will likely reward both of you with discounts and lower rates.

If you’re looking for ways to help your teen lower his coverage rates and stay safer on the road, follow these tips to help him or her qualify for teen auto insurance discounts. You might be surprised what a difference it can make in your premiums!

Encourage defensive driving habits and stress the rules of the road

Keeping a clean driving record is the best way to lower teen car insurance premiums. If your kids can beat the statistics—which indicate that 16-year-old drivers get into more accidents than drivers of any other age—you'll save a lot of money on insurance premiums until they buy a policy of their own.

Don't allow your teenager to drive until you feel he or she is ready. Then, once he or she takes the wheel, don't be nonchalant about driving habits. Ride along often; encourage the rules of the road, and establish rewards for following them. Be an example in your own driving and demonstrate safe driving patterns.

Help your teen with his homework

If your teen gets good grades, congratulations—you're the winner of cheaper car insurance premiums!

Stretching themselves academically not only helps teens get into college; it also benefits family budgets in the form of lower auto insurance premiums. So keep tabs on your teen's progress in school, give him or her pats on the back for working hard, and do everything in your power to reward good driving behavior.

Enroll him in driver's ed

We all know practice makes perfect—especially when it comes to driving. And your insurance company shares this view. The more training and practice your teenager gets behind the wheel, the better driver he's likely to be—lowering his risk of having an accident.

Simply enrolling your young teen in a driver's education course qualifies him or her for auto insurance discounts—and that should be music to your ears!

Make sure his ride is safe

Just because your teenager wants a sports car doesn't mean he should drive one! Instead, supply the safest ride you can find while he or she is learning. Safer cars are cheaper to insure because they're just that: safer.

So take a "training wheel" approach while your teen is on the learning curve by supplying the safest car you can find. He'll be less likely to experiment with risky driving—and more likely to keep everyone safe on the road.

Give him incentive for safe driving

If, despite your best, your teen still takes risks on the road, give him a reason to drive safely by forcing him to take responsibility for his actions. One of the best ways to do this is to make him pick up the tab for a portion of the insurance costs and/or auto repairs in case of an accident.

With expenses like that hanging over his head, it won't take him long to realize that safe driving is the way to go!

Warn him about drunken driving

Finally, talk openly and honestly with your teenager about the long-lasting effects of drinking and driving. Offer statistics on accidents involving drunken drivers, and talk about the resulting devastation for the families left behind.

Though the subject may be a grim one, a reality check may be just what the doctor ordered to keep your teen—and everyone else on the road—safe and sound!

If you're the parent of a teenaged driver, take steps to encourage safe driving and help eliminate risky behavior on the road. Then let GIQ shop your car insurance rates. You'll be surprised how affordable teen car insurance can be!


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