As the government and country continue to respond to the pandemic affecting us all, many people are struggling financially. Whether furloughed by your employer or running your own business, any relief that trims the monthly bill is a welcome one.
For most adults, their car has long been the staple that keeps them able to go to work. The opposite is true now, and many are wondering just how much they need their car insurance. Why pay for insurance when you’re forbidden from visiting loved ones or using it for other travel? We have approximately thirty-two million passenger cars in this country, and the majority of them are now grounded.
The bottom line? It’s vital that you still keep your policy updated. Let’s take a closer look.
Paying your insurance
Unfortunately, you’re still legally required to pay your car insurance if it is stored on public land, as most are. There’s no stipulation about whether the car is used in this aspect of motoring law; if it’s on public land it’s insured, even if it doesn’t budge a millimetre for months on end.
If you’re fortunate enough to have access to private land to store your vehicle on, such as a privately-owned parking space or garage, you can register your car differently using a Statutory Off Road Notification (SORN). This tells the DVLA you aren’t using your car on public space or public roads.
SORN means you aren’t required to pay insurance or tax your vehicle. If you have any full months of tax remaining, the DVLA will arrange a refund for you. How your insurer will handle payments and refunds will vary between providers, so it’s best to speak to them directly.
Leave the MOT
If you’re a driver who has an MOT that expired on or after 30th March 2020, you won’t need to extend it any more; vehicles are given a six-month exemption. This will effectively extend your MOT expiry date automatically. Keep in mind the updating of your MOT history isn’t instant, so you might not see the change right away online.
If you have your very first MOT due, you’ll also see the same six-month exemption applied automatically. You won’t have to do anything yourself to apply it.
Speak to your insurance and car provider
It’s been a challenging period for insurance providers too. The car insurance market is rapidly adjusting to the pandemic and the change its made to our roads and motorists. The long and short of it? Get in touch with them.
While the service being provided by your insurer will vary, you may find that your insurance provider is offering alterations to your policy that can help save you money.
If you’ve purchased your car on finance and still have repayments to make, you might also find that your provider is offering relief periods where you don’t have to pay. These ‘holidays’ are usually being provided for a period up to three months; a temporary relief that is nonetheless welcome and quite significant for many motorists who bought their wheels on finance.
Take care of your car
It’s not exciting and nobody is exactly enthusiastic about spending money on maintaining their daily driver, but it’s necessary! As cars are grounded across the UK, we all must resist neglecting them. This includes changing certain parts, and dropping by sites like Partsgeek.com to see how you can upgrade your car’s parts.
Basic maintenance routines, such as checking your vehicle’s brakes, lights and tyre pressure, are important even if you don’t plan to drive your vehicle any time soon. If you’re checking your vehicle when it’s in poor condition, be careful and responsible; you can get hit by a £2,500 fine for driving a car in a dangerous condition. You might instead be given three points on your license or be banned from driving. If your car is in a poor state, instead speak to your local mechanic to see what they can do to help.
We hope this helps trim costs in the months ahead. Speak to your insurer, see what deals are available to you and be diligent in maintaining your motor. The Freshloan team wishes you well! Take care.