How To Help Customers Face Adding Their Teen Drivers

teen driver auto insurance

Photo from State Farm

Teenagers.

They certainly don’t make it easy on your customers, and no time in their young lives is more harrowing than when they get behind the wheel for the first time on their own.

(Okay, maybe riding shotgun with them is more harrowing, but one at least feels like they can scream loud enough to get them to pull over.)

No, it’s when they become a fully insured and autonomous driver that insurance customers have to watch out because this is the period of their lives where they’re more likely to get into an accident, to cause the accident, and to send insurance premiums skyrocketing.

Luckily, there are some steps that you can share with your customers to help control costs and reduce the likelihood of their teenagers becoming a liability. Here’s what you should tell them!

Reward Them

When raising a teenager, you want them aiming at two major accomplishments: making good grades and not getting into any trouble. Establishing a system of rewards and incentives is an effective way to bring the best possible effort out of them. Keep in mind that a teenager’s brain is still developing, and while they have a sense of right and wrong — in many cases, a solid understanding — they may not always be capable of seeing long-term repercussions should they let this person or that person drive their car, or should they slough off this test or that homework assignment. Encouraging them to maintain both good grades and good behaviors can have a highly beneficial effect via good student discounts, which vary in percentage from one company to the next.

If your child has a part-time job, you might consider telling them that if they can qualify for the good student discount and drive safely, you will pay the insurance premium — or a good portion of it — for them. But if they foul up in one area or the other, then part or all of the fiscal responsibility becomes their own.

Give Your Kids A Crash Course On The Costs Of Driving

Young people do not have a full sense of the financial responsibilities that most adults will face. It’s your job as a parent or guardian to teach them. So rather than simply paying the premium for them, make sure they know how the costs break down and what their end of it is each month, even if you don’t end up charging them for it. By educating your children on what it costs to insure a vehicle, you can guide them toward wanting more practical automobiles than cars or trucks that are costlier to insure (especially if they’re paying for some part of the total package). And once they learn that lesson…

Take Them Car Shopping

Obviously, the amount of car that a family can afford will be directly tied to the financial capabilities of the family unit. If you can afford to help your child with a car payment, co-sign for them, or even buy the car outright, make sure you put them in a car that has strong safety features ahead of vehicles that are priced higher by insurance companies. Involving your teens in the process will educate them more toward the responsibilities they (will) face, and a more responsible teen is going to be less of a risk on the road.

Choose Higher Deductibles

If you keep enough cash in reserve, then choosing higher deductibles can be a good way of controlling payments with regard to your teen. The fewer claims filed, the cheaper your teen will be to insure over the long haul, and the higher you set out-of-pocket expenses, the less likely you’ll be to initiate a policy claim.

Check With Your Insurer About Accident Forgiveness Programs

Nationwide makes note of its Accident Forgiveness policy in most advertising materials, but they don’t have the market cornered on the concept. No matter who your insurer is, check to see what they have in place. If it’s an add-on service — it usually is — it’s definitely worth getting for your own peace of mind.

Multi-Policy Discounts

While these have little to do with the driving prowess of your young one, stacking coverages remains one of the best ways to get the deepest discount from an insurer. Virtually all companies — large and small — offer this option, and you avoid them at your own risk.

In Summary

Auto insurance customers often dread the day they add their teen drivers to the insurance policy because they’re aware as much as anyone of the costs associated. As an agent and a customer advocate, you can help assuage some of these fears by empowering your customers with the knowledge they need to reduce and control costs as much as possible. While there are no guarantees, the advice shared here should be a great help.

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