Tips Help Keep Teen Insurance Premiums at Reasonable Rate

Car insurance is a monthly expense all drivers have to deal with, especially teenage drivers. Fortunately, there are some ways to manage the costs.

"Putting your teen in a big, boring vehicle is going to be a lot easier on the wallet than giving them the zippy small car they may want," said Russ Rader of the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.

There’s a reason it costs more to insure teenagers. Drivers ages 16 to 19 are more likely to be involved in crashes or receive moving violations than any other segment of the population, according to the IIHS.

Good grades, a responsible driving record and an automobile with advanced safety features all help teens pay less for insurance.

The IIHS offers the following advice for insuring teen drivers.

  • Make the grade. Lots of insurance companies offer discounts for good grades in school. Check with your insurance provider about specific terms and conditions.
  • Drive carefully. Insurance rates increase after a ticket or collision. Teach your teen to drive defensively and they’ll avoid a lot of the expensive pitfalls.
  • Make and model matter. A teenager behind the wheel of a sports car will pay far more than one who drives something efficient and safe.

The IIHS also offers the following four guidelines to teens for safe driving.

  • Stay away from high performance vehicles. More powerful engines can tempt teenagers to test the limits.
  • Bigger, heavier vehicles are safer. They protect better in a crash, and analysis of insurance data shows teen drivers are less likely to crash them in the first place.
  • Electronic stability control (ESC) is a need. The feature that helps a driver maintain control of the vehicle on curves and slippery roads reduces risk on a level comparable to seat belts.
  • Vehicles should have the best safety ratings possible. At a minimum, that means good ratings in the IIHS moderate overlap front, side and head restraint tests and four or five stars from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).