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October 4, 2019

Car insurance for teen drivers: easy and fair with Root

Pricing that’s based on more than age.

Finding cheap insurance for teenagers is hard. Most traditional car insurance companies charge extremely high rates. That’s because most car insurance companies base their pricing on statistics that show new drivers are more likely to be involved in car accidents. Plus, teenagers don’t have a credit score or driving history to consider for risk assessment.

But, at Root Insurance, we use new mobile technology through our app to base your auto insurance rate primarily on your driving behavior—and that applies to your teen, too. 

Young drivers can still be good drivers, and better drivers deserve better rates. When you sign up with Root and take the test drive, invite your teen to test drive, too. See if it’s the best and cheapest rate you can find.

Your driving is the No.1 factor in your rate at Root

There's no comparison—the discounts come built in at Root.

Other car insurers¹ could require:

  • Multiple driving classes for teen discounts

  • 3,000+ logged driving hours for a teen discount

  • Proven good grades for an extended time

  • Participation in a teen driving program for a year or more

Maximize your savings when adding a teen driver

Adding additional drivers to your policy costs more, and the average cost for teen drivers is high because, statistically, teens are a higher risk for insurers. 

But there are ways you can compensate for additional expenses, when your teen is ready to start driving.

  • Add your teen to your existing family plan, if possible.

  • Make sure your teen’s car has at least basic safety features like air bags, and get a safety check from a trusted mechanic before you make a purchase.

  • Choose an older, cheaper car for your young driver instead of a luxurious new car—as long as it’s safe.

  • Consider increasing the policy limits on your Bodily Injury and Property Damage coverages when you add a young driver. Chances of an accident occurring on your policy will increase, and you would have to pay anything over the policy limit out of pocket.

  • Consider increasing your deductible for Collision and Comprehensive coverages to lower your rate—also known as the amount of your monthly or full term premium. Keep in mind that if you or your teen did cause an accident, that means you would have to pay the new higher deductible before your coverage kicks in.

Should you share a policy with your teen or get them their own?

It’s typically cheaper to include your teen on your policy because you have an established driving record, credit score, and you help balance the risk factors. Even if your child is a college student and living away from home, they’re usually allowed to remain on your policy.

However, if you have multiple accidents on your record or something else that drives your rate up, it might be worth checking to see if getting your teen a separate policy would be cheaper. Multiple factors go into car insurance pricing, so choosing what’s right for your family depends on your needs and situation. 

How much car insurance coverage should your teen have?

Root helps you navigate how much coverage you need at each stage of life. Financial responsibilities change over time, but it’s likely you’re still paying for most of your teen’s expenses.

Everyone’s situation is different and no one can predict the future. Weigh the amount of risk you’re comfortable with and the statistics for your child’s age group with what you know about your teenager personally. 

Before you decide on coverage, ask yourself:

  • How much insurance is legally required in your state?

  • How much can you afford upfront for monthly (or full term) car insurance payments?

  • How much would it cost to replace your teen’s car—or your car, if they’re driving it?

  • If a major accident happens, how much could you afford to pay? What health insurance coverage does your teen have? Are the deductibles high?

Your answers will affect the coverage limits and deductibles you choose for your teen’s or family’s policy, and your decisions around adding coverages like Medical Payments or Personal Injury Protection.

Learn more about how much coverage you need for your teen or family, and get tips for first-time car insurance buyers.

The statistics around teen driving can be scary

Your teen might be an excellent driver, but it’s still important to be aware of teenage driving statistics. For instance, the crash rate of teen drivers is nearly 4 times that of drivers older than 20, per mile driven.2

After all, even if they’re a great driver, your teenager will likely be a passenger with other teens, too.

Learn more about teen driving statistics here.

Share safe driving tips with your teens.

  • Talk with teens about ways to improve their focused driving—including driving phone-free, looking up directions ahead of time, and not eating behind the wheel.

  • Consider limiting teen driving during high-risk times such as evenings, and establish boundaries or off-limits places to drive.

  • Consider limiting the number of people in the car when your teen is driving—or when they’re a passenger with another teen. Some states mandate this.

  • Make a commitment with your teen to never drive or ride with someone under the influence.

  • Make an emergency plan with your teen for times when they feel unsafe in a car or in a risky situation while riding with others.

Get a rate based primarily on how you and your teen actually drive

Experience family car insurance that’s fair. Using the Root app is simple—you and your teen driver can easily access your insurance cards, make changes to your policy, and file claims. We can even help you cancel your previous policy.

[1] Based on publicly available information provided by competitors. [2] Based on the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.

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