31st July, 2017 | 3 minutes
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How moving house could affect your car insurance premiums

by Simon Harris
Insurance Geek

People don’t always think about their car insurance when they move house. However, location is a key factor in how car insurance premiums are calculated, so it’s important that you contact your insurer before moving.

Why location matters

Calculating your premium comes down to risk. While each insurance company takes their own approach, there are common location-based factors that can affect the price of your premium.

Your car insurance premium might increase or decrease, depending on your new address. Failing to inform your insurer about your move may lead to a rejected claim or a reduction in your claim amount.

Your new address

Insurers use historical data to assess the risk of insuring your car. They will look at:

  • The rate of theft and vandalism in the area.
  • The frequency of traffic accidents in the area.
  • The number of drivers on the road (more cars in a smaller area equals a higher risk of accidents).

This means your premium might change when you move from a quiet country town to a busy city, or vice versa.

Premiums may also differ depending on the state or territory you live in. If you’re moving cross-country, it’s a good idea to check with your insurer and see if this will affect the cost of your car insurance. For example, car insurance can be more expensive in NSW than in other states.

Where your car is parked

Moving into a new home with a locked garage can sometimes reduce your premium. Garages not only help to protect your car from theft or vandalism, but they can also prevent weather-related damage, too.

If you’re parking on the street at your new house, this can add to the risk of car theft, meaning your premium could go up. Covered carports don’t provide the same level of security as a lockable garage, but they may earn you a discount on your premium compared to street parking.

Your new commute

Some insurers ask questions about how often you drive your car. Moving house can mean a new daily route to work or the kids’ school. Travelling longer distances on road could cause your premium to increase. On the other hand, if your new commute involves less time on the road, your premium may come down.

Moving House

How to get a better rate

No matter where you’re moving to, there are ways you might be able to reduce the cost of your car insurance or the risk of having to make a claim which could cause your premium to increase:

  • Fit your car with an alarm and immobiliser to reduce the risk of theft or damage.
  • Install security lights around your driveway or parking space. Parking safely also means reducing the likelihood you’ll need to make a claim and lose your no claim bonus.
  • Consider using public transport, especially if your move means a significantly longer commute.
  • Shop around. What worked for you in the past may no longer be suitable. For instance, you might be moving in with your partner or spouse. You can talk to an iSelect consultant on 13 19 20 about what this means for your premium.

Updating your car insurance to reflect your change in address may not seem like an obvious item on your moving house to-do list. However, keeping your insurer updated means you’ll stay covered, with a policy that suits your circumstances.

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iSelect does not compare all products in the market. Not all products are available at all times. Any advice provided in this content is of a general nature and does not take into account your objectives, financial situation or needs. You need to consider the appropriateness of any information or general advice we give you, having regard to your personal situation, before acting on our advice or purchasing any product.

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