T.A. Swain Insurance Group, LLC

It's an exciting time and somewhat nerve wracking time for the family. Your baby is growing up and has come of age. They're old enough to obtain a Driver's License now; growing more and more independent. You call your insurance adviser to have your teen driver added to your insurance policy. Then you get hit with the sticker shock!

Usually, the first question I get from parents is: "Can they get their own insurance?"

The answer is: "No". That is unless they are no longer living in your home and are emancipated. This is rarely, if ever, the case for a 16 year old.

The bottom line is that youthful drivers are expensive to insure (PERIOD). You cannot escape the expense, but there are ways that you can reduce this enormous leap in your insurance premiums.

1. THE BEST WAY - is by assuring your teen maintains a 3.0 GPA or better. The Good Student Discount offers the steepest discount to your youthful driver premiums because it shows responsibility on the part of your teen.

2. Think about it, your current rates have discounts for Multi-Vehicle, Home, and Life Insurance. If you think the cost to insure your teen on your policy is expensive imagine what it would cost for them be on their own without Home/Auto and/or Life discounts.

3. Impress upon your teen the absolute necessity that they develop safe driving habits. Speeding tickets and accidents will crush your insurance budget and count against the household for up to 5 years.

Speaking of household, it may seem intuitive to get your teen an old beater with Liability only to reduce the expense of insuring them. However, the insurance industry is already hip to this and actually rates the teen on the most expensive car you own and insure. Insurers rates are based upon all household drivers. You're all in this together which is why it is so important that everyone do their best to be safe drivers with clean driving records and no "at fault"* claims. Also, the main reason you cannot get your teen their own policy is because your insurer more than likely has it written within their contract that you must have ALL licensed drivers within the household listed or "excluded". If you attempt to "exclude" your teen in an effort to obtain them their own policy, insurers will deny them because they still live in your household. You can't connive against the inevitable expense and any insurance adviser worth their salt would never contribute to subterfuge on your part. Candor and honesty is always best. Reality may not be what you wish it were, but attempting to make it into something it is not will only come back to haunt you.

*Not all states are "at fault" states. Speak with your insurance adviser if you have questions or concerns.

Posted 12:06 PM

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