If you are a car enthusiast you probably know there are literally dozens of situations where every day insurance is insufficient. While specialty insurance for collectors cars may come to mind, you may be surprised to know a number activities and items are not covered by your typical car insurance policy. In addition to actual policy differences, what is important and even the insurance companies ability to understand your car, your hobby and what you are doing becomes vital.
ShiftAtlanta has pulled together a handy guide to help you understand what you need to look for from a car insurance company. And not just policy, how best to identify the best providers. Of course, we recommend you talk to a company that specializes in car insurance for enthusiasts like Shift Brokers.
Some Typical Things Your Insurance May Not Cover
While every policy is different, and you’ll want to talk a licensed broker or agent, here are some common things NOT covered by your traditional insurance policy.
- Modifications – that’s right, any modifications you make to your car may not be covered by your insurance.. This is particularly important when dealing with your comprehensive policy. And if you don’t tell you insurance company about modifications, they can potentially even deny your claim.
- OEM Parts – many mainstream company policies do not guarantee OEM parts are used when covering repairing damage.
- Track Days/HPDE – most track events and activities are not covered. This includes tracks, drag racing, drifting, stunt driving events and more. Even car shows may be excluded.
- Market Value – You may be surprised to find out that you and your insurance companies definition of the value of your car can be wildly different. Don’t leave it to chance, particularly if you have a large amount invested or a one of a kind car.
What To Look For In Car Insurance Policy As A Car Enthusiast
- Guaranteed or Agreed Value coverage – It’s the only way to make sure you get the full value of your enthusiast vehicle. Talk to an insurance broker to understand the difference.
- A good reputation working with enthusiast or modified vehicles – Ask around and read online reviews. Find out how companies treat their clients and deal with claims. You don’t want to find out once there has been an incident that the few dollars a month you saved has turned this incident into a hassle.
- Financial stability – Choose a company with an A.M. Best rating of “A-” or better. This means that the company is financially strong and benefits from good management.
- Driving Policy – if you drive your car, even occasionally, be sure to find a policy and/or a company that will cover your car and drive it. While typical car insurance will allow you to drive agreed upon miles, some specialty coverage can restrict or limit usage. Some agreed or guarantee value, project, collector or other highly specialized coverage has limitations.
- A broker or agent who KNOWs cars – Choose an agent or broker who knows cars and your situations. If they race, collector and attend car events, they are far more likely to understand how to help you. Also, finding an insurance company that has experience and expertise with enthusiast policies is a big plus. It can save hassle down the line, have access to lower cost policies and even allow you to do more with your vehicle than a traditional insurance provider.
Find Out More
Insurance can be complicated. For car enthusiasts, it can be particularly difficult. The insurance industry and most traditional insurance companies are not set up to work with enthusiasts. Worse, in some cases they actually don’t want car enthusiasts. They unfairly label them as costly or high risk. And the more specialized your use case – whether it’s occasional track use, super car, collectable or just simply modified and personalized, the more difficult insurance can be. The good news is, there are brokers who work with enthusiasts. They know the cars and they have specific insurance offerings from companies that work with enthusiasts. In some cases, the costs are actually LOWER because they understand how to evaluate the risk.
*The information posted in this article is intended to be general advice. This information is not legal or direct insurance advice. You should always review your polices and talk to your agent or broker before making insurance policy decisions.