When should I add my child to my auto insurance?

As soon as your child starts driving, you must add them to your policy. 16-year-olds have an average cost of $296.81/mo, but Driver's Ed can lower your rates by 10%.

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Mathew B. Sims is Editor-in-Chief and has authored, edited, and contributed to several books. He has been working in the insurance industry ensuring content is accurate for consumers who are searching for the best policies and rates...

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Dan Walker graduated with a BS in Administrative Management in 2005 and has been working in his family’s insurance agency, FCI Agency, for 15 years (BBB A+). He is licensed as an agent to write property and casualty insurance...

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Reviewed byDaniel Walker
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UPDATED: Apr 20, 2020

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Things to Remember...

  • You should add your child to your auto insurance policy as soon as they get behind the wheel
  • This is simply a smart move to make when it comes to managing your car insurance policy
  • Statistically speaking, teen drivers also participate in more risky behavior behind the wheel such as driving without a seatbelt, speeding, texting while driving and driving with too many passengers
  • Even though your insurance premium will go up, there are some ways that you can help reduce the overall amount of the increase for teen drivers such as driver’s ed, good grades and combining policies
  • The best thing parents can do is to treat driving as a privilege and not a right

For a teenager, getting a license and the privilege to drive is exciting. For parents, this time can be a stressful time, especially when it comes to insurance rates.

You should add your child to your auto insurance policy as soon as they get behind the wheel. In some states, this means when they get their learner’s permit, in other states it means when they get their license.

Auto insurance rates increase when adding a child, so take time to compare auto insurance rates now by entering your zip code.

When you add your teenager to your auto insurance policy one thing you can expect for sure is an increase in premium costs. In many cases, premium costs as much as double when a teen is added.

Unfortunately, you can’t control some of the reasons why. For example, teen boys are more costly to insure than teen girls and living in certain neighborhoods will increase your premiums.

Check to see what car insurance rates are best for you and your child. Enter your ZIP code to start comparing right away!

Why does it cost more to insure teen drivers?

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There are many reasons for this increase in insurance. The main reason is that teens are considered high-risk drivers. Even if you feel you have a very responsible child, they are still at more risk than an adult driver based on inexperience alone. This high-risk status continues until the age of 25 for males and 23 for females.

Statistically speaking, teen drivers also participate in more risky behavior behind the wheel such as driving without a seatbelt, speeding, texting while driving and driving with too many passengers.

Motor vehicle crashes are the number one cause of death among teenagers with 16-year-olds having the highest crash rate. Teens should fully understand the power of driving before getting their license.

Though this statistic is disturbing, understanding the main factors that cause accidents for teen drivers can help. The number one reason is listed as inexperience but the main way this plays itself out is through passenger distraction.

Teens tend to pile as many passengers in a car as possible. The atmosphere in the vehicle becomes chaotic and causes accidents.

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How can I reduce the rise in auto insurance rates when adding a teen driver?

Even though your insurance premium will go up, there are some ways that you can help reduce the overall amount of the increase for teen drivers:

  • Driver’s Ed – Driver’s education discounts are the number one way to reduce premiums for teens. Many high schools or states require driver’s education courses. If not, you can find one locally for a cheap price or even free
  • Good Grades – Another way to decrease premiums in teen drivers is to encourage your child to get good grades in school. Good student discounts can be given when a student provides a copy of their report card to the insurance company. Each company calculates good grades differently so be sure to ask if it is based on overall GPA or taken on a grade by grade basis
  • Combine Policies – Another way to save money is to combine all your policies with one company. Homeowners insurance, life insurance, boat insurance, or renters insurance can be combined with auto insurance to reduce the overall price of a premium. It is a smart way to lower costs and to have one easy payment

What other factors increase teen driving rates?

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The type of car you allow your child to drive has a big impact on auto insurance rates. SUVs and sports cars will increase your premium amount while compact cars will reduce your premium rate.

If you or your child is purchasing a vehicle just for the teen to use, choose wisely. The coolest car is not always the best choice.

Accidents and moving violation within the first two years of having a license will increase premiums greatly.

In some cases, insurance companies will drop teen drivers who receive violations within the first 18 months of being insured. This is where teaching your child to be a safe driver comes into play.

The best thing parents can do is to treat driving as a privilege and not a right. Teens need consequences and need to understand the dangers of driving irresponsibly.

Showing your teen statistics or even videos of crashes resulting from irresponsible drivers can be sobering. Take preventative measures before your child receives his license.

To compare auto insurance rates so that you can receive the best deal for your family, enter your ZIP code now!

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