Modified car insurance
If you modify or 'soup-up' your car to enhance the way it looks or performs, the chances are your insurance premiums will rise as a result.
Modified cars usually command a higher premium simply because insurers regard them as a higher risk than standard factory cars. This is because:
- They can't be sure of the exact changes that have been made, or the potential dangers these pose to the driver and other road users.
- Additions such as alloy wheels and spoilers may add value to your car, and make it more attractive to thieves.
- If the car's value is higher, the potential cost of replacing it if it is stolen or destroyed are also higher.
- If your engine has been souped-up, insurers may believe the vehicle is more likely to be involved in an accident – or that any accident it is involved in might be more serious.
What is classed as a 'modification'?
Any modifications that could have an impact on your vehicle's performance or value are worth telling your insurer about. Obviously they don't need to know if you replace your threadbare car mats, or touch up a scratch on the paintwork, but if you're in any doubt it's always worth a quick call to ask their advice. If the changes are insignificant, they won't charge you any extra – but if they do make a difference, the extra will be well worth paying to avoid invalidating your policy.
Informing your insurer about modifications
Even though modifications will push up the price of your premiums, it's vital that you tell your insurer about any changes you make to your car. If you don't mention them, you could invalidate your insurance cover. If this is the case, any claim you make could be refused.
If you're taking out a new policy, you need to tell the provider about any modifications. And if you decide to make changes to your car while your existing policy is in force, you need to call your provider and let them know – don't wait until you renew, or that could be too late if you need to make a claim before then.
Reducing the costs of insurance on modified cars
There are some ways you can help to reduce your insurance premiums:
- Opt for a larger voluntary excess – the higher the excess, the lower the premiums.
- Boost your vehicle's security by fitting it with an alarm or immobiliser to deter and prevent thieves.
- Add a named driver to your policy who has more driving experience than you, to help reassure your insurance provider
- Shop around for the best deal. Using a site such as ours you can compare several quotes from different insurance providers in one hit, saving time and potentially a lot of money.