You are on a budget but car insurance in Ontario is mandatory. It’s a must-have before you can even think about taking your car out of the driveway. However, shopping around for a new (or used) car can be daunting if you are trying to keep costs as low as possible. You have to consider its fuel economy, features, functionality, and of course, the insurance.
One of the best ways to keeping your car insurance rates low is to purchase a car that is cheaper to insure. However, many drivers may not know what that means. What makes a car cheaper to insure anyway? In this blog, we go over some of the details that insurance companies will use to calculate your insurance rates and how you can choose a cheaper car to insure based on those.
What factors determine your insurance rates – not including the car itself?
There are several variables affecting your insurance rates that do not necessarily take into account the actual car you are driving. These may include the following:
- The city where you live in Ontario. Drivers in Toronto, for example, face some of the highest car insurance rates in all of Canada. It comes down to crime rates, traffic, and more.
- Your driving history. If you have numerous at-fault accidents or traffic violations, you may be charged higher insurance rates to reflect your future risk of accidents.
- How far or frequently you drive. If you have a lengthy commute to work, you may see higher insurance rates as there is a higher risk of accidents the longer you are on the road.
- Your insurance history – i.e, you making payments on time, continuous insurance, and good driving habits will likely contribute to lower rates.
- Your age. Generally, inexperienced drivers or younger drivers (drivers under 25) may see higher rates than older drivers who have been driving for longer due to the increased risk of accidents or traffic violations.
These factors do not take into account the type of car you drive, however they are important to keep in mind as even if you choose a “cheaper car to insure” your rates may still be higher than you would expect due to other factors.
Factors impacting your insurance rates – based on the car.
Insurance providers will examine your car’s model and make based on a number of factors. These will directly affect how much or little you will pay for your insurance. Sometimes, insurance providers can make predictions based on the type of car correlated to the driver – i.e, a minivan is likely driven by someone who has young children and as such will be much more likely to drive with caution in order to keep their children safe.
Another factor that insurance providers may look at when it comes to the vehicle itself is the safety rating. A general rule of thumb is the higher the safety rating, the cheaper the insurance. Car manufacturers will increase safety ratings as there are advances in technology. Safety ratings are determined via how well the car protects the passengers in the event of a crash using crumple zones, frame integrity, airbags, and rollover resistance. They are also determined via crash avoidance, with newer technologies adding to the likelihood that an accident will be prevented. This includes having a rearview camera, adaptive cruise control, blind spot sensors, forward collision warnings, and automatic braking systems.
A higher safety rating will reduce your insurance rates as well as your likelihood of being in an accident.
Is your car more appealing to thieves? Some cars are simply more likely to be stolen due to their appeal and insurance providers will take this into account when calculating your premiums. If your car includes any theft alarms, this may make you eligible for a discount.
Replacement or repair cost
Finally, cars that have higher replacement or repair costs will pay more for their rates. Cars with lower repair/replacement costs will be less to insure.
Does this mean that a new car is more expensive to insure? Not necessarily. When comparing an old car and the cost to insure it versus a newer car, typically the used car will be less to insure because it is overall worth much less – and therefore would cost less to repair or replace (if it was totally written off). However, safety ratings and theft likelihood would also need to be taken into account, so this is not always the case.
A list of cheap cars to insure in Ontario:
While the cheapest cars to insure in Ontario will change by the year as new cars become available and engineering advances with new technology and increased safety ratings, some cars are consistently cheaper to insure than others. An example of this is the Honda Odyssey. As of the year 2019, here are some of the cheapest cars to insure in the province of Ontario:
- Ford Fiesta S 4DR
- Nissan Sentra 1.8 S
- Kio Rio EX 4DR
- Hyundai Accent E 4DR
- Chevrolet Spark LS
- Nissan Micra S
- Mitsubishi Mirage ES
- Toyota Yaris 4DR
- Nissan Versa Note S
- Honda Fit DX 5DR
If you are concerned about the price you are paying for your insurance rates, considering choosing a vehicle that is identified as being lower to insure than your average vehicle. You can also request help from an insurance broker to shop around for competitive quotes so that you can find something more to your liking in terms of price. If you aren’t in the market for a new car, try installing an alarm device or look into anti-theft systems for your vehicle as it may make you eligible for a discount. Finally, increase your deductible! So long as you are alright with a higher out-of-pocket cost, increasing your deductible will directly impact your insurance premiums.
Excalibur can help you find insurance quotes for a price that works within your budget. You can get started today by applying for a quote.