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Foolproof Ways In Which Car Owners Can Save Money

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Owning and operating a vehicle is an expensive undertaking. The purchase price of the vehicle is only the beginning. When this is added to the cost of maintenance and fuel expenses, this could stand out as one of the biggest personal expenses in your budget.

As with all types of personal finance tasks, the more cost-saving measures you resolve to adopt today, the more money you will save in the future. Although the savings can depend largely on your personal situation, the following ways guarantee significant cuts in costs:

How To Save Money When You Buy A New Car:

Before you buy a new vehicle, you should be well-prepared so as to avoid some of the following mistakes:

  • Car finance - If you are financing the purchase of the car, you will find that the friendly car salesman at the dealership is very accomodating. More often than not, dealers can ensure that almost all vehicles fit into your budget. They adjust the interest rates, offer longer loan tenures, or restructure the car loan in such a way that you are able to make monthly payments in a comfortable manner. But you should be aware of the fact that even a few extra months in repaying the loan can add thousands to the total cost of the vehicle. So, choosing an affordable car is a crucial step. If you are financing the vehicle 100%, remember that you will be paying a lot more as interest over the long term.
  • New versus used cars - With the availability of attractive used cars in the market, you can consider buying a second-hand vehicle to bring down your car purchase cost. New cars undergo a significant amount of depreciation in value over the first 2 years; so buying a one or two year old vehicle actually makes sense.
  • Maintenance costs - When buying a car, it is important to consider its long-term maintenance costs that are often overlooked. If you have an expensive vehicle, the cost of insuring it also increases.
  • Car trading - Trading cars every few years is not a great move. You would know that cars depreciate quickly, so when you change vehicles frequently, you lose on trade-in values. It is advisable to buy models that are smaller with higher mileage.

How To Save On Car Maintenance Costs:

After you purchase the vehicle, you will have to bear the monthly EMI, auto insurance premiums, and cost of fuel. There are several money-saving opportunities as far as car maintenance is concerned:

  • Keep your vehicle tuned properly, as this will improve its mileage.
  • Replace the oil and oil filter after the car has run for a specific distance. Changing the oil frequently will extend the life of the engine, reducing engine wear and saving on repair work.
  • Examine the air filter of your vehicle on a monthly basis. A clean filter improves the mileage of the car.
  • Using the right tyres for the car can also improve its mileage by up to 10% each year.
  • It is not necessary to use high octane gas in your vehicle unless it is pinging and knocking. Premium gasoline costs higher than ordinary fuel, but it is most suitable for cars with high-performance engines or when the manufacturer recommends high-octane fuel for the vehicle.
  • It is advisable to check the tyre pressure regularly, as you can lose out on mileage for under-inflation. You should also get your tyres balanced every year in order to avoid wearing out the suspension system and shock absorbers.
  • It is important to check your car’s fluid levels often. If the battery has low water levels, its life will be shortened. Similarly, check the automatic transmission fluid, coolant, and brake/clutch fluids regularly.

How To Save On Driving Expenses:

You know that it is impossible to negotiate on fuel prices the way you negotiate the cost of the car. However, you can take several steps to reduce the overall expenses on driving:

  • Check if it is possible to carpool to work. This saves you a lot of money in the long run, and it is also an environment-friendly initiative. Not only will you save on gasoline, you will also save considerably on wear and tear of the vehicle and its maintenance costs.
  • Carpooling has an added advantage of reducing the annual mileage on the vehicle. Since you are using the vehicle less, you may also strike a better deal on your car insurance premium. Just make sure that your insurance company is aware of the average distance you drive so that you can benefit from this.
  • Develop habits that save on fuel. This includes accelerating gently, watching the traffic conditions in front of you so that you can slow down gradually instead of stopping, avoiding driving too fast or too slow, and maintaining a steady speed when driving on the highways. You should also try not to get stuck behind slow-moving vehicles too often. When this happens, you will slow your pace of movement and then speed up to pass, burning more fuel than usual.
  • Do not let your vehicle idle in traffic, as idling wastes a lot of fuel.
  • You can save on fuel substantially by combining multiple errands into one trip.

How To Save On Motor Insurance:

Car insurance is a significant expense associated with car ownership. The cost of your insurance policy will be higher if you have a poor driving history or if you live in specific high-risk areas. Listed below are some ways in which you can save on car insurance premiums:

Voluntary deductible Opting for a high voluntary deductible ensures a low premium. However, you should not choose very high voluntary excess values, as you will be required to pay this amount when you raise a claim. If you are a very confident driver with a blemish-free driving history, you can consider raising your voluntary deductible value to save on car insurance costs.
Safety features If your vehicle has authorised anti-theft devices installed in it, you can qualify for big discounts on car insurance premium.
Insurance for older cars If you have a very old vehicle, say one that is 10 years old, you can consider dropping own-damage cover for it. You should, however, retain the third-party liability insurance cover as it is mandated by the law. For cars that are older than 5 years, buying a comprehensive car insurance policy may not be a worthwhile investment owing to depreciation.
Compare insurance between providers Several financial websites that are neutral offer the facility of comparing insurance policies between providers. This is a very useful service as it helps you in determining the most cost-effective product for your needs. You can also compare policies at the time of insurance renewal and make a judicious purchase.
Bundling insurance If you have a health or home insurance policy from an insurance company, you can consider purchasing car insurance from the same provider. This way, you may be eligible for discounts based on loyalty. Speak to the insurer and understand whether you are eligible for such discounts.
Preserve your No Claim Bonus (NCB) Insurance companies offer NCB for drivers who do not raise any claim in a policy year. This is a very attractive benefit in car insurance as it helps in bringing down your renewal premium by a significant amount. So, preserve your NCB by not raising frequent claims and claims for small expenses.
Practise defensive driving If you are careful on the roads, the chances of you getting involved in an accident are lower. This can save you a lot of money. So practising defensive driving is a great way to cut down your car maintenance/driving costs.
Discounts based on profession and age Car insurance companies offer premium discounts to customers based on their profession. Doctors and military personnel benefit from lower premiums this way. If you are between 25 and 60 years of age, you are likely to receive car insurance at lower costs as well.
Automobile association membership discounts Car owners who have membership in certain automobile associations get cheaper insurance rates. In case you have membership in such an association, do not forget to mention this at the time of car insurance purchase.

In conclusion, there are several ways in which you can bring down your car ownership costs. You will have to be diligent and consistently adhere to the cost-saving methods chosen by you in order to see significant gains.

Car Insurance Reviews

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  • ICICI Lombard Car Insurance
    "Good Policy."
    0.5 3.0/5 "Satisfactory"
    I have bought my car insurance with ICICI Lombard for last 5 years which I'm continuing for with the same company. The claim experience was better and when i applied for the same, they have given upto 80%. Its covered with bumper to bumper facility. They have given the claim in 1 week.
    Was this review helpful? 0
    , bangalore
    Reviewed on Jan 22, 2019
  • Royal Sundaram Car Insurance
    "Good policy "
    0.5 5.0/5 "Blown Away!"
    My car insurance was purchased in the year 2014 with Royal Sundaram. My dealer has recommended me about this policy. I pay the premium amount of Rs. 14000 with the coverage value of Rs. 6.27 lakhs which covered with the bumper to bumper facility.
    Was this review helpful? 0
    , ahmedabad
    Reviewed on Jan 22, 2019
  • Bajaj Allianz Car Insurance
    "Good Policy"
    0.5 3.0/5 "Satisfactory"
    I had taken this insurance policy a while back and the premium amount has been quite good and not too high. The payment method has been easy and there has not been any sort of charges, and the policy covers bumper to bumper. Their customer support has also been responsive and was helpful as well.
    Was this review helpful? 0
    , mumbai
    Reviewed on Jan 22, 2019
  • ICICI Lombard Car Insurance
    "Its Good"
    0.5 4.0/5 "Great!"
    There was no claim experience for my Tata Tiago with ICICI Lombard. I have renewed the car policy at last june, I paid the amount around Rs. 10,600 because its around 1.5 year old vehicle. I took comprehensive plan which includes loss , damage, ICICI Lombard got tie up many showroom.
    Was this review helpful? 0
    , new delhi
    Reviewed on Jan 21, 2019
  • ICICI Lombard Car Insurance
    "Best cover"
    0.5 4.0/5 "Great!"
    Very recently I took policy from Car insurance for my new Baleno car, it was done by ICICI bank, they deducted insurance fee from the loan. The loan department issued the policy copy on time. For first year its 100% coverage available its a bumper to bumper with ex showroom.
    Was this review helpful? 0
    , new delhi
    Reviewed on Jan 21, 2019
  • ICICI Lombard Car Insurance
    "Good Car Insurance policy"
    0.5 4.0/5 "Great!"
    I have selected the ICICI Lombard for my car since the dealer has given me this insurance. I have been paying the premium amount of Rs. 15000. This is not covered for the bumper to bumper facility. They have given me a IDV value of Rs, 3.10 lakhs. They are providing the good garage facility all over the city.
    Was this review helpful? 0
    , bangalore
    Reviewed on Jan 21, 2019
  • United India Car Insurance
    "Yet to experience the policy"
    0.5 3.0/5 "Satisfactory"
    I have applied the claim for my car recently. I have given the car into the showroom and they have asked me to inform in the insurance company. When i visited other branch they have asked me to the home branch. They have given me a sufficient IDV value. Its covered with a bumper to bumper facility.
    Was this review helpful? 0
    , chennai
    Reviewed on Jan 21, 2019
  • ICICI Lombard Car Insurance
    "Reliable Policy"
    0.5 5.0/5 "Blown Away!"
    Purchased my car insurance through ICICI Lombard and They have given me a low premium since i have taken a loan from ICICI bank. They have given me a good IDV value. This is a bumper to bumper covered policy. They have given me a road side assistance, no claim bonus benefits.
    Was this review helpful? 0
    , chennai
    Reviewed on Jan 21, 2019
  • National Insurance Car Insurance
    "Good Insurance"
    0.5 3.0/5 "Satisfactory"
    My Honda amaze car got insured with National insurance for one year of tenure period. I think my old premium amount was around Rs.30,000. I took first party comprehensive plan it covers for loss, damage, theft. The customer support is good even the IDV is good.
    Was this review helpful? 0
    , bhubaneshwar
    Reviewed on Jan 21, 2019
  • ICICI Lombard Car Insurance
    "Competitive price"
    0.5 5.0/5 "Blown Away!"
    I have taken a car insurance from ICICI Lombard and the service is really good. I spoke wtih the customer care once for the claim. The garage people taken care of the full settlement process. The premium amount is nominal. They have given me a best claim what they can offer according to their norms.
    Was this review helpful? 0
    , bangalore
    Reviewed on Jan 21, 2019
  • Royal Sundaram Car Insurance
    "Economic offering and wide accessibility"
    0.5 5.0/5 "Blown Away!"
    Because it was good comparison between other companies hence i have chosen the Royal sundaram. The premium amount is reasonable. The IDV value is good. This a comprehensive policy which covers third party insurance. They have tie up with most of the garages. They have cashless facility in most of the places.
    Was this review helpful? 0
    , bangalore
    Reviewed on Jan 21, 2019
  • Royal Sundaram Car Insurance
    "Average"
    0.5 3.0/5 "Satisfactory"
    I took my car insurance with Royal Sundaram. I never contacted the customer service. It is a default insurance from the showroom. The premium is high because I go for bumper to bumper offer, road side assistance, zeo dep. It is a first party insurance and no claim. The policy period is one year.
    Was this review helpful? 0
    , bangalore
    Reviewed on Jan 19, 2019
  • SBI General Car Insurance
    "Good Policy"
    0.5 4.0/5 "Great!"
    The showroom people has offered me a car insurance policy with SBI. I have made a premium amount of Rs. 22000. They have given me a coverage value of 100%. Total IDV value is 90% of the car value. I have no claim experience till now. The documentation process was done by showroom.
    Was this review helpful? 0
    , new delhi
    Reviewed on Jan 19, 2019
  • National Insurance Car Insurance
    "Smart protection with National"
    0.5 4.0/5 "Great!"
    The major factor to chose National Insurance because of the premium is economic, I took the policy for 3 years the IDV value remains the same for the whole tenure. The customer support is good on time they activated the policy. I have Tata Tiago , its around four months vehicle. Its zero depreciation comprehensive plan. I taken the policy through showroom.
    Was this review helpful? 0
    , lucknow
    Reviewed on Jan 19, 2019
  • ICICI Lombard Car Insurance
    "Satisfied with the policy"
    0.5 5.0/5 "Blown Away!"
    My car insurance is with ICICI Lombard. The customer services are good and I got the policy documents on time. The policy coverage is good and there are features of a road side assistance is there. The premium is economical too. Good overall.
    Was this review helpful? 0
    , bangalore
    Reviewed on Jan 19, 2019
  • ICICI Lombard Car Insurance
    "Need to reduce the premium"
    0.5 3.0/5 "Satisfactory"
    I had a car insurance from ICICI LOMBARD which was offered by the showroom at the time of purchasing the vehicle. I felt the insurance premium is very high compared to others. I got a reminder call from the customer service at the time of renewal. It has zero dep for one year.
    Was this review helpful? 0
    , new delhi
    Reviewed on Jan 19, 2019
  • Tata AIG Car Insurance
    "Excellent"
    0.5 5.0/5 "Blown Away!"
    I took my car insurance from TATA AIG through online channel. They have given lesser premium with zero dep and it includes road side assistance. The customer service is very good. The policy period is one year. I have no claim experience. It is a first party insurance.
    Was this review helpful? 0
    , new delhi
    Reviewed on Jan 19, 2019
  • Tata AIG Car Insurance
    "Satisfied policy"
    0.5 5.0/5 "Blown Away!"
    TATA AIG is the best company to take the car insurance. Since long time i have taken this insurance. The customer care people used to call me to renew the policy and they used to policy renewal letter. I will do payment through online. Several times i have claimed the policy and i have received very good response.
    Was this review helpful? 1
    , hyderabad
    Reviewed on Jan 18, 2019
  • Universal Sompo Car Insurance
    "Excellent Service"
    0.5 5.0/5 "Blown Away!"
    I had taken this insurance policy a long time back and it has been a good insurance policy. I had been paying the premium online and the payment method has been convenient. There has been a claim made once and the claiming method has been simple.
    Was this review helpful? 0
    , navi mumbai
    Reviewed on Jan 18, 2019
  • New India Car Insurance
    "Comprehensive benefit policy"
    0.5 5.0/5 "Blown Away!"
    My car insurance was taken from New India. I don't speak with their customer care since i don't require it. I had a claim experience which is a easy process without any tension. As per their policy, the maximum claim amount settled. Since they are providing good services i have opted this policy. They have given me a road side assistance and bumper to bumper facility.
    Was this review helpful? 0
    , chennai
    Reviewed on Jan 18, 2019
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