Car Insurance Tips When Buying a Minivan

October 20, 2009
If you're buying a minivan, chances are you're purchasing a vehicle for the entire family. It can also mean that you need a vehicle that can seat large groups comfortably. Whether youre a family, a shuttle or a church organization, you will be transporting more than a handful of people, which means you need the absolute best auto insurance protection. Before we discuss minivan car insurance, lets take a quick look at the benefits of owning Americas favorite family car over an SUV.

Minivans come in three sizes including compact, regular, and large. Compact minivans are popular for small families while regular sized minivans are perfect for medium-sized families. Large minivans are typically used for very large families, organizations, and business such as contractors or shuttles. While SUVs are considered a more stylish choice for families and others, minivans are actually the preferred choice because they hold more cargo than SUVs. In addition, the seats can be removed or folded into the floor for easy storage, the interiors allow for easy movement so parents can monitor children, and depending on type, minivans seat 7-15 people comfortable. Although minivans are roomier than SUVs, they cost less to purchase and fuel.

Minivans are not as flashy as SUVs, so they are less expensive. They typically cost anywhere from $19K up to $24K for basic features whereas a standard, full-size SUV may start out in the mid $30s or higher. A V4-V6 engine is standard for a minivan, but the largest minivans may require V8 or possibly V10 engines, particularly for minivans that are being used to carry heavy loads. SUVs may utilize the more powerful V8 engine more often, meaning, the minivan will offer better fuel economy. Mazda, Dodge, Honda, Kia, and Ford currently manufacture some of the top minivans for fuel economy on the market today.

In addition to savings on fuel and sticker price, minivans cost less to insure as well. Believe it or not, the minivan is one of the least expensive cars to insure in its class. It costs anywhere from $2,500-$2,900 per year to insure a Ford Explorer, while the Ford Freestar Minivan costs roughly $2,041-$2,297 to insure.

If you want to enjoy even more savings on minivan auto insurance, there are several simple car insurance tips to consider. First, dont skimp on coverage. Always opt for higher coverages than the minimum amounts required by law. The 8 tips below will help you avoid driving off the lot with inadequate coverage for you and your family or group.

Tip #1: Increase your deductible to save up to 40%. So if you have a $500 deductible, increase it to $1,000.

Tip #2: Ask about safe driver discounts. You could save 15-20% on your premium.

Tip #3: If at all possible, keep your annual mileage low. Auto insurance companies offer a number of discounts or lower rates for low use.

Tip #4: If you have home, life, and health insurance, combining your policies with one insurance company will help you save at least 15% on your premiums.

Tip #5: When purchasing a minivan, opt for added safety features. Auto insurance companies want you to be safe, so you will be rewarded for features like side curtain airbags and stability control.

Tip #6: Shop and compare and let I be known. Car insurance companies understand that the competition for consumer dollars is fierce, so they are willing to offer you a better deal than the competition, especially if you are quality customer.

Tip #7: Take a defensive driver course. You might save 15-20% on your premium.

Tip #8: Inquire about all available discounts. Just a few include: retirement discounts, military and veteran discounts, loyalty discounts, association discounts, and group discounts. Some insurance companies even offer discounts to parents whose college-age kids are attending school at least 100 miles away from your home/car!

Talk to your auto insurance provider for details on discounts and other possible ways to save. 

Michelle Burton is a published author and contributing editor for Auto Insurance Tips, Trouvé Media, Internet Brands, and Publications International, Ltd.

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