10 motoring mistakes to avoid – from lying about address to driving with pets

Have you changed jobs recently?

If your answer is yes, your car insurance could no longer be valid.

That's because lying about your main address can really impact your policy.

Now the experts at CarParts4Less have revealed 10 ways to legally reduce your car insurance agreements.

Car insurance prices have reached a seven year low with coronavirus helping to drive down the costs.

But it's important to remember to be as accurate as possible when providing your personal details.

In fact, providing false information or failing to update with changes of circumstance can invalidate your insurance.

Here are 10 mistakes to avoid when doing your car insurance…

1. Lying about your main address

Car insurance premiums can vary depending on the postcode, as some areas have higher rates of thefts and break ins.

It can be tempting to put down your home address as somewhere different to where your car stays every night.

However, doing so can mean your insurer can refuse to pay out any claims made like if your car is broken into.

Insurance companies have investigative departments dedicated to making sure information and claims are correct.

2. Ignoring your morning commute

There are three types of car usage that insurance covers; social only, social and commuting, and business.

Social only insurance covers driving for social or leisure use; driving to and from friends' houses, going to the supermarket, etc.

Insurance companies may dispute or refuse claims made during a commute if the policy is social use only, even if it only a one off.

If you use your car for work purposes outside of commuting, you will need to get business cover.

3. Not informing your insurer about any car modifications

Car modifications can affect your insurance premium.

Optional add ons for new cars, including a fitting for a SatNav, can impact insurance so it's best to ensure these options are noted.

4. Not informing your insurance company of minor accidents

In the case of small bumps or minor accidents, it's common for motorists to have their car fixed without making a claim.

However, even if you intend not to claim, it is important to inform your insurance of any damage received.

5. "Fronting"

Insurance for young drivers often costs more than groups deemed less of a risk.

But if you try and get round these higher premiums to name a parent or partner as the main holder, you could get caught "fronting".

Your policy will immediately be cancelled and have any claims denied if you are caught.

These cases are often taken to court as it is classed as insurance fraud, with fines of up to £5,000 and six points on your licence.

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6. Using more miles than you thought

Your annual mileage is one of the main factors used to calculate your insurance premium; the higher the mileage, the higher the cost.

It's important to be as accurate as possible when providing this figure, rather than just guessing.

When working out how many miles you drive, don't forget to include weekends away, weekly shopping and socialising.

7. Driving with pets

If you are driving with your pet in the car, you are legally required to make sure they are secured.

Unsecured pets can make a car more at risk of accidents, as they may distract the driver or even physically get in the way of driving.

If you crash with an unsecured pet in the car, it's likely that your insurance company will refuse to pay for your claim.

8. Letting other people drive your car

While it's possible for your friends or family to have policies that allow them to drive other cars, it's likely they won't cover accidents.

So while your friend can legally drive it, any accidents that occur may not be able to be claimed for.

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9. You've recently changed jobs

Your current occupation is one of the factors used to determine your risk profile, so it's important to update your insurance company.

Failure to do so may mean any claims made after a job change can be denied by your insurer.

10. Charging for lifts

Some policies specifically exclude cover for car sharing, whether you make profit or not.

For those whose policies do allow lift sharing, it may be void if you make a profit from giving lifts.

Earning money from giving lifts can identify you as a "taxi hire service", making a policy which does not cover this void.

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