5 top tips for choosing car insurance class

Searching for cheap car insurance in the UK might be a necessity but it can also be a time consuming chore. Nevertheless, it’s crucial to make sure the policy you pick covers your needs and in particular, the way you use your car. 

In fact, it’s vitally important to get your car’s class of use just right, because getting it wrong could mean your policy isn’t valid. To help you decide what’s right for you, here are 5 top tips for choosing your car’s class of use from mustard.co.uk.

1) Find out what each class of use means

Needless to say, you need to know what each class of use covers in order to choose the right one. For most of us using our cars for regular day to day activities, there are two classes of use to choose from:

  • Social, domestic and pleasure (SDP) — if you only use your car for personal reasons, this is the class of use for you. It covers taking the kids to school, errands like the weekly food shop, and visiting friends and family. It’s also known as ‘social only’. 
  • Social, domestic, pleasure and commuting (SDP+C) — this covers all the personal activities in SDP but it also covers driving to work, as long as it’s to a single, fixed location (like an office). It’s also suitable if you drive to a station and then finish your journey to work by train or tube.  

Neither of these classes cover business use. If you travel a lot for work and visit numerous people and places, you’ll need business car insurance instead (but don’t worry business use typically covers social use too). There are three groups to choose from:

  • Class 1 business use — covers driving to multiple work locations like regional offices or branches. 
  • Class 2 business use — provides class 1 business use for you and a named driver on your policy (for instance, if you wanted to add a work colleague).
  • Class 3 business use — if you cover a considerable number of miles for work and visit lots of different people in various locations, this is likely to be the most suitable class of use for you. For example, if you’re a surveyor, community nurse or midwife. 
5 top tips for choosing car insurance class

2) Check definitions for business and commercial use

When it comes to business use and commercial use, insurers don’t always use the same definition. While some insurance providers use the two terms interchangeably, others make a clear distinction between them. If that’s the case, commercial car insurance tends to cover drivers whose cars are an essential part of their job (for example, couriers and taxi drivers) and not just a means of transport.

Unfortunately, that can make choosing the right class of use even more confusing so if in doubt, always check with the insurer. 

3) Think carefully about how you use your car

As obvious as this sounds, it’s easy to overlook how you use your car. After all, being able to jump behind the wheel and drive off is something many of us take for granted. But remember, having the wrong class of use could mean your insurer refuses to pay out if you need to make a claim. 

Not only does that mean you face paying for damages yourself, if your insurer cancels your policy, you could also struggle to find car insurance in the future. With that in mind, think carefully about the journeys you make. 

It’s also worth checking the insurer’s definitions, including any limits on business miles, to avoid costly mistakes. 

4) Be honest

When you arrange a car insurance policy, always answer any questions as best you can. Not doing so can be considered misrepresentation or non-disclosure, which can cause serious problems if you come to claim and get caught out. 

If you forget to mention something, tell your insurer as soon as possible.  Mistakes are easy to make and simple to rectify, so don’t put off letting your insurer know. 

5) Update your policy if your circumstances change

Ultimately, car insurance class of use reflects the risks you face as a driver and helps determine your premium, so if your situation changes, let your insurer know. Whether that’s because you’re now working remotely and only need SDP or you’ve changed roles and need to switch from SDP+C to business use class 1, your policy should always cover your usage. 

With most insurers, updating your details is quick to do by phone or email but it could save you from stress and financial loss if your insurer voids your policy. 

To compare car insurance that gives you peace of mind, start your quote right now at mustard.co.uk. 

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