Raising a child can be an experience filled with joy and wonder, but any parent can tell you that it also has its share of nerve-wracking moments. As a matter of fact, if you ask most parents about the time when their offspring made them worry most a sizable proportion will point to the day their child first obtained a driver's license. In most cases this means granting excessive mobility- not to mention access to a very expensive piece of equipment- to someone who probably isn't exactly a picture of maturity. Nerve-wracking, indeed.
Keeping Ahead of the Curve
The dilemma faced by the parents of a new teenage driver can only be resolved through experience, meaning that their child must eventually get behind the wheel and learn. This also tends to involve the occasional mistake, and for those who aren't prepared these mistakes can be dreadfully expensive. The obvious answer, then, is to research appropriate teen car insurance quotes before any new teen driver can get on the road. For many states this is a requirement for anyone who drives a motor vehicle, but even when it isn't mandatory there are few good reasons for anyone who can afford proper car insurance to avoid having it.
Know Your Policy
The particular circumstances surrounding a given teen driver should be taken into consideration when deciding exactly how to go about getting them insured. In many cases, the car that the new driver will be using is already the main vehicle used by the entire family, and is therefore already properly insured. In these instances, it's likely that adding the teen to the policy as a valid driver will be all that's needed. Sometimes, however, the car that the teen driver will be using is designated as his alone- it might be an old hand-me-down, or possibly even a brand-new vehicle- and in these cases it's necessary to purchase a separate car insurance policy. This situation can be troublesome, as many car insurance companies charge fairly steep premiums for a newly-licensed driver. In these cases you may need to make some difficult choices regarding how your teen's car insurance policy should be arranged.
From Liability to Full Coverage
At the outset, any teen's car insurance policy should include good liability insurance coverage for both property damage and bodily injury. This should be a no-brainer, as your typical teenage driver probably can't pay for any damage they cause out-of-pocket. After that, you should also consider adding some degree of collision coverage. Collision coverage may turn out to be somewhat expensive for a newly-licensed driver, so if the car they're going to be driving is more than a couple of years old you should probably do some quick math to decide whether insuring it against damage for a few years will cost less than the repairs that they might have to cover during that time. For older cars, this kind of coverage usually doesn't make financial sense. Other policy elements, such as uninsured motorist protection, aren't quite as important but should still be considered.
Once you've determined what kind of car insurance you'll need for your teen, you would do well to shop around a bit before making a purchase. Comparing quotes can quickly point you toward insurance options that save you quite a bit of money, and in many cases there are companies that can solicit price quotes on your behalf and thereby save you quite a bit of time and effort. Don't put off buying your teen car insurance on the grounds of expense because the peace of mind it brings is easily worth the money.