Protecting Your Baby when You’re Out on the Road: A Guide to Insuring Your Classic Car
Your classic car isn’t just four tires and an engine. It’s practically a member of the family. You’ve spent hours lovingly restoring it and searching for just the right parts to keep it in its authentic glory while still being roadworthy. After all of that effort, why would you take it out on the highway without ensuring that you were properly insured? That’s why purchasing car insurance for your classic car is so important.
You do always have the option of purchasing car insurance for your classic car through a normal car insurance provider. Standard car insurance will provide you with liability and comprehensive coverage when you’re out on the road; however, you may find that their method of calculating the value of your classic car doesn’t reimburse you the full fiscal value of your investment. Your best bet if you are truly concerned about not losing out in the event of an accident is to obtain collector’s car insurance from a specialty provider.
When you first purchase your car insurance policy through a specialized provider you and your agent will decide upon an “agreed amount” dictating the replacement value of your vehicle. This will provide you with full coverage for the protection of your vehicle while at the same time offering you a lower premium than you would have through the standard coverage provided by most generalized car insurance providers. Why? Because a collector’s insurance provider understands that because your classic car is your prized possession you’re going to drive it less, place it in fewer high risk situations and handle it with more care than you would a traditional passenger vehicle.
The primary factor in the lower cost of a collector’s car insurance policy isn’t just the care you take with your vehicle. Standard car insurance carriers have tailored their policies to meet the needs of drivers who hit the highways in passenger cars every day. You may end up paying for coverage you neither want nor need. A collector’s insurance provider, on the other hand, will allow you to tailor your auto policies to meet your specific needs rather than the needs of the sixteen year old down the street breaking in his brand new license.
There are a few “catches” to collector’s insurance coverage that may not be present in a standard policy. In order to obtain collector’s car insurance you will usually be required to have a vehicle that is more than 15-25 years old (depending on the type of the car and what state you live in), have maintained a driver’s license and good driving record for at least 10 years, have a garage that your classic car calls home a majority of the time, limit its use to hobby and pleasure drives (i.e. an occasional trip to a classic car show or a Sunday drive around the neighborhood rather than the daily commute to and from work) and maintain another passenger vehicle for every driver in the house to ensure that the collector’s vehicle doesn’t become a primary mode of transportation out of desire or necessity.
It’s estimated that over 50% of classic cars are insured through standard insurance carriers, and if you choose to do that rather than purchase collector’s insurance for your vehicle that’s certainly a legitimate choice. What matters is that your car is protected by car insurance coverage that will work as hard as you do to make sure your baby is in good hands.
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