Modifying a car can be a great way to personalise your car. New alloy wheels, adding extra headlights and tuning up the engine are just some of the ways you can modify your car. What you might not know is that this can have a massive effect on your car insurance.
When we talk about modifying a car we instantly have visions of crazy paint jobs, noisy exhausts and the car being lowered that much it struggles to make it over a speed bump - essentially something like Grease Lightening! But you don't need to go to these extremes for your insurance premium to be altered.
The definition of a car modification is a change made to a vehicle so that it differs from the manufacturers original factory specification. So it is vital that you consider the extra costs that may accompany your modification.
Insurance costs are all calculated based upon the risk. So insurers have to consider a few factors before arriving at a price.
Any modification that changes the look of and performance of any vehicle has to be assessed by the insurance provider. Engine changes, sports seats, body kits, a spoiler etc. all have to be considered. This is due to the risk of an accident happening. Some modifications such as phone kits and performance modifications also increase the likelihood of your car being broken into or possibly stolen.
However, there is a flip side to this. Some modifications can actually reduce your insurance premium. For example, if your car has parking sensors fitted this would suggest that your chances of having an accident are reduced as there are a safety feature.
So, should you modify your car? First, it is important to speak to an approved manufacturer dealer as it vital that modifications are carried out by a specialist as they will be able to offer practical advice.
Now you have the desired modification, you will need to notify your insurer. Not informing your insurer could invalidate your insurance meaning you have no insurance on your vehicle which could lead to a more serious problem. When looking to re-new you car insurance make sure you let all potential insurers about your cars modifications as companies differ when defining what a modification is.
Always make sure any modifications you have are safe, legal and that you always speak to an approved service team before having any work carried out.