The Best Ways to Get Car Insurance Discounts in Ottawa
In Ontario, all vehicles must have auto insurance coverage before they can be registered. It is a mandatory expense. But, fortunately, you have some control over how much you have to pay.
Whether you are a new driver, switching insurance providers, or looking to renew your policy, we recommend shopping around and comparing different policies for the best value and fit.
Some insurance companies also offer discounts based on your driving history, insurance history, type of vehicle, etc. Your insurance broker may be able to advise you on eligibility. The last thing you want is to pay a higher premium than you need!
Take Advantage of Driving School Auto Insurance Savings
If you are a young driver or are about to learn how to drive, attending an MTO-approved driving school course is one of the quickest and easiest ways to save on your car insurance. Most insurance companies will offer you a discount if you show a driver’s licence history as proof that you have completed the course.
The average cost of a driving course in Ontario is $600. However, this is an initial investment towards getting cheaper car insurance in the long run. You will get a discount, but you will have the option to graduate from a G2 to a G licence after eight months rather than the standard 12 months.
G2 drivers often have a higher insurance rate than G-licensed drivers. This means you can lower the time you have to pay a higher rate by four months.
Note that not all driving schools offer MTO-approved courses. So, check the approved list of driving schools on the Ontario government website before registering for a course.
Increase Your Deductible
Increasing your deductible is one of the simplest ways to lower your auto insurance premium. However, make sure that you are comfortable with and can afford to cover this new amount in the event of a claim.
Consider Usage-Based Insurance
Usage-based insurance or a telematics discount, uses technology to track your driving metrics and rewards good drivers with discounted insurance.
When signing up for usage-based insurance, your insurance provider will ask you to download a mobile app or install a device to your car to track relevant metrics, such as distance travelled and driving safety. The collected data will be forwarded to your insurance provider, and they will evaluate your driving habits.
Depending on how well you drive, you can get a discount of up to 30%. Some insurance providers also offer discounts of up to 20% just for signing up for the program.
Telematics insurance is an excellent option for demographic groups charged above-average premiums, for example, young or new drivers or drivers with a low credit score. On the other hand, the most significant disadvantage of telematics insurance is the lack of data privacy.
Most insurance providers use GPS tracking technology to determine how far you’re driving. This will also give them information about where you are. If you are uncomfortable with sharing your location data, this type of program may not be the right fit for you.
Changing Your Tires
While winter tires are not mandatory in Ontario, however, changing your all-season tires for winter ones can get you a winter tire insurance discount of up to 5%. The specific date of when you need to put on your winter tires depends on your insurance provider.
However, you may consider changing your tires before your insurance company’s guidelines if temperatures drop below seven degrees Celsius. All-season tires usually begin to stiffen and lose their grip on the road at this temperature.
Take Advantage of Policy Bundles
Purchasing different insurance policies with the same insurance provider is a great way to save some money on your premiums. For example, you can bundle your home and auto insurance together to get a discount on both policies. If you have other motor vehicles, you can have all your vehicles under one policy to get a deal.
Practice Safe Driving
Having a clean driving record is key to keeping your auto insurance premium down. A poor driving record can affect how your insurance provider calculates your rates. Also, your car’s safety rating can affect your premium price. So, when shopping for a new car, consider picking a vehicle with high crash test ratings and low theft scores for a lower insurance rate.
Avoid Street Parking
If you can park your car in a laneway, driveway, or garage overnight, you might be able to get an auto insurance discount. The insurance company will assess the risk of parking on the street overnight, including damage, theft, accidents, etc. If you can access private parking, you may have a lower premium.
If your current auto insurance policy is about to expire, it may benefit you to stay with your existing insurance provider. Some insurance companies offer discounts to loyal customers who renew their policies yearly. Call your insurance provider and ask if they have a loyalty discount before continuing your policy.
Unfortunately, Ontario has some of the most expensive auto insurance premiums. We always advise drivers to shop around and compare policies to find the best value.
Don’t have the time to shop around and contact insurance providers yourself? At Oegema Nicholson, our experienced insurance brokers help you find the best auto insurance for your unique needs and make sure you don’t pay more than you need to. To learn more about which auto insurance discounts you are eligible for, call 613-704-7766 to request a quote today or contact us here.