Car insurance and your financial portfolio

When the effects of inflation are being felt more than ever, and global economies are stuck in a state of recovery, it’s common for us to sit down and review our monthly expenses in a fervent drive to reduce our expenses. As we scroll through our bank statements or budgeting apps, we will start to question every payment – and insurance will always catch our eye and have us asking if it’s really necessary.

The answer is not always “yes” or “no” to insurance. More often than not, it’s about how much cover we need and can still afford, and then attempting to find a comfortable balance between those two amounts

Each choice affects the whole of our portfolio; none can be taken in isolation. This is why these conversations and questions become more complex and overwhelming because we start out wanting to know the solution to one problem, and then find ourselves working through a host of other concerns.

Car insurance is no different and carries a myriad of budget-influencing factors. It doesn’t matter who you bought the insurance through, or are considering, it will impact your financial plan, and that’s why this conversation is relevant.

There are many blogs and articles written about car insurance. Still, this one aims to bring in some high-level considerations to help you understand and ask better questions about your insurance and how it impacts your overall financial portfolio.

First off, car insurance is not just about covering you in the event of an accident; it’s also designed to offer cover if your car is stolen. Whilst you may think that you drive well and avoid accidents (which is unfortunately impossible, no matter how carefully we drive), you need to think about the implications of having your car stolen, especially if you have taken finance to purchase your vehicle and/or have a balloon payment plan.

As Bertus Visser from PSG says, car insurance is not only about your driving abilities but also about safeguarding against everyday hazards outside your control.

Regarding the types of cover available, it’s always beneficial to work with an adviser or broker on this as the options are extensive, and they’re never as clear-cut as comparing apples with apples.

But it’s helpful, beyond your car payments and insurance premiums, to consider how excess will work, what roadside assistance is available, if you’ll need to hire a car whilst you’re without one (either from an accident or theft), and if a balloon payment is covered in your short-term insurance portfolio. Should you claim on your car insurance, the amount of money needed to clear your excess, or anything else not covered under your policy, will either eat into your savings or force you to incur more debt.

Viewing your vehicles and related insurances within the bigger picture of your financial future is essential. A car, for many, is not simply a luxury – it could be a vital means of generating an income, running a business and helping your family live the life you choose.

And that, is worth insuring.