You are required to purchase van insurance before you drive your van in the UK. It is a mandatory and legal requirement under the Road Traffic Act. This Act regulates the use of vehicles and the conduct of drivers. The insurance will provide you with the financial protection against physical damage, and or bodily injury resulting from collision and against the liability that could arise from it.
Types of van insurance
An insurance company will provide you with a certificate of insurance specifying the type of cover and what is covered. The cover can be classified into three types:
1. Basic third party van insurance cover
This insurance is the basic level required by law. Third party insurance covers the following:
• In respect of injury to others, for instance, to your passengers and the other person outside of your van, and
• Damage to other people’s property, such as, the third party’s vehicle, but not your own van.
2. Third party, fire and theft van insurance cover
This type of insurance covers damage from fire and theft in addition to what is covered under third party insurance .
3. Comprehensive van insurance cover
A comprehensive policy covers all that is insured under third party, fire, theft plus accidental damage to your own van even if you are at fault for the accident.
Tips to lower your van insurance cost
Several factors influence the premium. These factors include, van manufacturer, model, age of van, engine size and its value, van’s mileage, and the purpose of having the van.
Your insurance company also needs additional information, such as, who will be driving the van, the driver’s age, criminal history of the driver, and the driver’s driving history, including whether the driver has been involved in any accidents.
You may be able to reduce the cost of your policy if you:
• Pay a higher voluntary excess in addition to the compulsory excess. Voluntary excess is the additional amount you pay when you need to file a claim.
• Shop around. Many insurance companies have an online presence through the likes of a price comparison website. By comparing quotes, you could select a company that provides the cover required at an affordable premium.
• Build a no-claims discount as early as possible. Drive carefully to avoid any unfortunate events. The insurance company may lower your cost if you have a good driving record;
• Add extra security devices to your van, such as a vehicle tracking device and alarm to lower your cost;
• Secure the parking area for your van. Garages with a lock, security alarm and CCTV camera may lower your insurance cost;
• Drive a smaller engine van. Having a smaller engine in your van may reduce the insurance cost.
• If you use your van for a short distance your insurance company may perceive you as a lower risk than if you traveled long distances and they may reduce the premium.
Having suitable van insurance should provide you with peace of mind.