If you have a son or daughter heading off to college, you’re in the midst of getting everything together, packed, and ready to either take them to school or preparing them to head off on their own. As busy are you may be right now, there are a couple of car insurance related topics that are worth taking a few moments to examine as a parent, and to talk about with your son or daughter before they step onto campus.
Car Insurance Savings: A college education is expensive and has outpaced inflation for years, yet for many individuals, it’s the entrance fee to a good paying career. There are two car insurance discounts and one strategy that help you recoup some of what you’re spending on their education.
- Child away at school
- Good student
If the school your son or daughter is attending is locate 100 miles or more away from home, and they aren’t taking a car with them, you’re able to take advantage of this discount. Insurance companies recognize your student is not a daily driver and reduce the insurance premium to reflect that.
Making good grades still counts! If your student has an A/B average they will receive a lower rate. You’ll have to show a transcript about once a year to keep it in place, but it too adds up! If your son or daughter is a graduate student, this discount may still be available, but it will run up against a potential age cutoff. Most carriers terminate the good student discount somewhere between the age of 22 and 25 so ask your agent.
Where they attend school could also help! Those of us who live in Houston, Austin, San Antonio, Dallas and Fort Worth pay more for our car insurance than our neighbors in College Station, Lubbock, Abilene, Alpine, Waco, or other smaller communities.
In order to qualify for the lower rate, you’ll need to change the garaging address for your student’s car or truck. This does not work, however, if they are attending school out of state (Oklahoma, Arkansas, etc.) as this will require obtaining a car insurance policy written in that state.
Permissive Drivers: A permissive driver is anyone we give permission to drive our car. If your son or daughter hands the keys to their car to one of their friends so they can run to the store, see a movie, take out a date, etc. their friend becomes a permissive driver. If that person wrecks the car, it will be your insurance that may be called on to pay the claim. Texas insurance law stipulates insurance follows the car, not the driver (see http://184.108.40.206/~wiseinsu/bff-wrecks-car-whos-car-insurance-pays/).
Such a claim can cost you money in higher premiums or expose you to a lawsuit for a negligence claim. The impact financially could be a nuisance for 3 to 5 years of higher car insurance premiums or much worse. Discourage your son or daughter from loaning their car to friends.
These discounts will not offset the amount of money you’re paying for your student to attend college, but they do help! Do you have a question, suggestion, or experience you’d like to share? Please share them with us on our Google + or Facebook pages, or in the comments section of our blog. I’d love to hear from you.