As the festival of light approaches, we are all set to celebrate it with much pomp and show, scrumptious food, and delightful gifting. ‘Tis the season during which we illuminate our houses to signify the enlightenment of the soul and the triumph of the good over the evil.
For some, it marks the beginning of a brand new year, for others it’s the most auspicious time to start a venture. Though beliefs vary, almost everyone considers this to be the best time of the year to buy an asset that will be an intrinsic part of their lifestyles.
Diwali 2017 - Car Insurance Tips
If you are planning to buy a car this Diwali, then you have made a fabulous decision! You just have to ensure that you decide on an optimum car insurance policy that will act as a safety net to protect your dream set of wheels. In line with this, we have put together some tips that will help you narrow down on the best motor insurance policy for your needs:
- Compare insurance plans between providers - This is the crucial first step that, unfortunately, many car buyers fail to adhere to. It is important to educate yourself on the car insurance offerings in the market that you can benefit from. The best way to do this would be to compare insurance plans between providers. You can do this at neutral financial websites, absolutely free of extra charges. Moreover, you will also be able to weigh the policy coverage against the cost of insurance and settle on a good deal.
- Transfer your No Claim Bonus - If you have owned a car before, you would be aware of the No Claim Bonus in car insurance. This is a reward the insurer offers you for being a diligent driver and refraining from raising claims. So, if you have cruised through a policy year without any claims, you will be eligible for an NCB that translates into a discount on renewal premium. You can even earn a discount of up to 50% on renewal premium through NCB, if you have driven carefully for 5 policy years.
- Carefully select the add-on coverage - The comprehensive/package car insurance policies offered by insurers do not offer exhaustive coverage. There are several exclusions in comprehensive car insurance that you should take special note of at the time of policy purchase. In case you think you need additional insurance cover, you can always opt for one of the carefully designed add-on covers offered by the same insurance company.
The friendly car dealer may have offered you a great discounted car insurance plan. But you should understand that the best way to buy car insurance is not by settling for the first offer. A little window shopping may actually pave way to a plan that offers you better coverage at an optimal cost than that offered by the dealer. And it is also not mandatory to buy car insurance from the dealership. If you do some basic amount of research, you can zero in on an array of attractive motor insurance solutions from which you can pick the right fit for your vehicle.
It should also be noted that the NCB can be transferred between vehicles owned by the same person. So, when you buy a new car, do not forget to transfer the NCB that you had accumulated on your previous policy. This can bring down the insurance cost for your new car by a significant amount.
Most insurers offer the following add-on covers that can be used to amplify the coverage of the comprehensive/package plan:
- Engine protect cover - If you live in an area that is prone to flooding, this is the add-on cover that will give you complete peace of mind. The package policy does not offer you coverage for damage to the car’s engine due to any incident apart from an accident that causes total loss. Therefore, this is a very useful rider that you can consider buying. Also, if the insurance is being purchased for a premium/high-end car, it is recommended that you buy this add-on cover. This is primarily due to the reason that the cost of engine repair for expensive cars is usually very high. This cover provides you immunity against these unprecedented expenses.
- Zero depreciation cover - This rider is also referred to as bumper-to-bumper insurance or nil depreciation cover. It is also one of the most popular add-on covers in car insurance in India.
Cars are depreciating assets. Car parts also undergo depreciation based on a standard schedule followed across the industry.
Consider that you have a car that is protected with a comprehensive car insurance plan. At the time of a claim, the insurer will not pay you the entire claim amount. There are components corresponding to deductibles and depreciation that you will have to pay from your own pocket. Although it is mandatory to pay the compulsory deductible, that is not the case with the depreciation component. If you had opted for a nil depreciation add-on cover at the time of policy purchase, you will not be required to bear the component corresponding to depreciation. In a nutshell, a zero depreciation cover alleviates the impact of the sudden expense associated with a claim.
- Return to invoice (RTI) cover - This add-on cover is very useful in the event of a total loss claim. Consider a scenario in which your car (that was insured with a comprehensive car insurance plan) is stolen. When you raise a claim, the insurer provides you the Insured Declared Value (IDV) of the car as sum insured.
If your vehicle was equipped with the RTI add-on cover, you are liable to receive the on-road price of the car, i.e., its invoice value, which is much higher than its IDV.
Additionally, some insurance providers offer loyalty discounts to customers who have multiple insurance policies with them. So, if you have purchased a health insurance policy from an insurance company, check whether you are eligible for any discounts when you purchase motor insurance from the same insurer.
After you have bought the policy, ensure that you read through the insurance documentation thoroughly to ensure that the coverage is in tune with your requirements. In case you find an anomaly, check with the insurance company and follow the necessary steps to ensure that your car is adequately covered.
While few of us think that Diwali represents new beginnings, there are many who consider that it is a time to pay tribute to the goddess of wealth and light her way into our homes. Our guide to buying the most suitable motor insurance for your car during Diwali 2017 is a good resource that educates you on how you can save big this year. So this Diwali, while you revel in family feasts and firework displays, you can also give a pat on your back for bringing home the best car and the most optimum car insurance to protect it.
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GST Update: GST of 18% is applicable on car insurance effective from the 1st of July, 2017