Auto insurance. It is the thing that you do not want to have to use but you will be glad to have it if you do end up needing it one day.
However, depending on what type of driver you are, you could be paying a lot in premiums for this. On average, someone in the United States pays $1,555 annually for a full coverage car insurance policy.
But, one thing you might think of doing to save money is to add someone to your auto insurance policy. In most cases, it is going to be cheaper to do that.
Can you do that? Should you do that? Will you save the money you are desiring to take off your car insurance premium?
This is your guide.
When Do You Need to Add Someone?
The first thing you need to know is when you have to add someone to your insurance policy. There are three main scenarios where this becomes mandatory.
The first is when you have someone living in the same house as you that is of legal age with a driver's license. Insurance companies will assume that person will have a solid amount of access to your cars or multiple cars at your home, and that will have to be reflected in your car insurance.
Basically, if you have a significant other with the same residential address as you, you need to share a car insurance policy. If you have a child who is 17 and acquired their driver's license, you will also need to add them to your policy.
The second scenario is when you have someone that has regular access to your car, even if they are not living with you. So, let's say a close friend or family member that lives near you uses your car to get to their job while you work from home.
It can even be a significant other that you let use your car but does not live with you.
Finally, there is the roommate scenario. If you have a roommate and you both have regular access to the same car, you will need to add that person.
The overall point though is that in most cases, it is going to be cheaper to add someone to your policy than having you both get separate car insurance when you do not have to.
What qualifies as regular use is admittedly a little vague but assume that if someone is using your car multiple times per week, they will need to be on your policy.
The pros and cons of adding another driver to your policy really depend on how good of a driver the person that you are adding is. The top factors for a lower auto insurance rate are good credit, how experienced the driver is, and how often, if ever they have gotten a speed ticket or have been in a car accident.
So, when is it a pro to add another driver? Most likely, it is going to be when you are adding another reliable driver to your policy.
Let's say you are dating a significant other and you are both in your 30s with clean driving records. Well, a driver with a clean record ends up saving about $500 per year according to Kelley Blue Book.
Also, if that driver has good credit, they can save a significant amount of money on their own, so that would definitely benefit your rate.
Ideally, you will want someone that is at least middle-aged with no driving record and excellent credit. If you have all of those things in the person that you add to your policy, you can find yourself paying less than you did before.
There are a few obvious cons to adding another driver if you read the above, but the one not really discussed yet is teenage drivers. They are without a doubt the most expensive type of driver to add to your policy.
This may be partially why parents are hesitant to hand over the keys to their children, because they will feel a hole in their wallet before kids even have the chance to make a mistake behind the wheel. One example is in Pittsburgh, where adding a teenage driver can increase a car insurance policy by 136%!
In that situation, it means that a policy goes from around $1,600 per year to $3,800 per year. But, it is not far off from the national average, as teenagers commonly increase premiums by 125%.
Ok, let's not put all of the blame on teenagers for adding a driver, possibly backfiring for you because there are other reasons this can happen too. Looking at the above, the rest is really the opposite of what can get you a discount.
Some examples are adding a driver who has a bad driving record with speeding tickets and accidents, adding a driver who newly acquired their driver's license, and worst of all, a driver that has a poor credit score.
Also, one other con to watch out for is that some car insurance companies may give you a hard time removing a driver from your policy once you no longer need that driver. So, it may be best to think it over and make sure that driver is someone you will need for the long haul.
How to Add Someone
This is a relatively simple process. As long as you have an insurance agent, you can just call them and provide the proper information.
That is basically everything you can think of off the top of your head. It includes the person's name, date of birth, gender, social security number, what job they currently do (if any), years of driving experience, their driving record, and more.
If the driver that you are trying to add gives you all the proper information that you need to do this, it should take you no time at all, and it should be something that you only notice in your daily life after when it comes time to pay the premiums.
However, without an insurance agent, you may have a harder time getting a direct answer on how adding a new driver affects you. To get a better idea, get a free quote for auto insurance by entering your zip code and more.
Add Someone to Your Auto Insurance
So, you have the proper information needed to know if you need to add someone to your auto insurance and why you should do it. Now, you just have to take action and either reap the benefits or cross your fingers depending on the driver.
Do you need more information? Check out our auto insurance guide for further details.
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