I'm a big fan of comprehensive car insurance, but there is more to insurance than the premiums.
Comprehensive car insurance is the gold standard of cover, protecting against theft and damage to your car and anyone else's property if you're involved in a bingle.
Given the cost of comprehensive cover, it's important to shop around but one in three Australian drivers has always been with the same insurer, which can mean missing valuable savings.
If you're in the market for a car, your choice of vehicle, along with where the car is kept and the way you drive, can all have a major impact on premiums.
A good chunk of your premium is determined by the car's ANCAP rating. The vehicle's steal appeal matters too. Around 60 per cent of stolen cars have a market value below $10,000. The Car Safe website (www.carsafe.com.au) can show how attractive your car is to thieves.
Comparing premiums is easy. Most insurers provide online quotes, often with discounts if you organise and pay for cover online.
However, check out an insurer's reputation before handing over any cash.
A recent investigation by ASIC, found some insurers have taken a heavy-handed approach to claims when they suspected fraud was involved and found motorists who'd been subject to investigation, often faced lengthy delays - sometimes spanning several months, before the issue was sorted.
ASIC is looking at how industry standards can be improved. Until then, check out reviews of insurers on social media, or ask friends, family and co-workers for recommendations.