People buy classic automobiles for many reasons. Some may have always wanted to own a 1969 Chevrolet Camaro or a 1964 Pontiac GTO because they fell in love with them. A few people warm to the idea of purchasing one of these beautiful automobiles and restore them to their full glory. Some investors in antique autos are always looking for bargains and make profits as they will only get rarer and rarer and increase in value. Another idea is to have them so that you can enter into competitions and take part in car rallies.
Whatever the intentions, you need to make sure that it is insured for the intended purpose, at the right valuation and with acceptable terms and conditions. It may take a little extra care to arrange the best policy. But it is not something that is rare or hard to find in the market.
Here are 10 things you should know while insuring a unique and valuable automobile.
- You Will Probably Need a Specialty Policy
Unfortunately, you cannot buy a standard policy for these vehicles and be done with it. It is best to arrange specialist coverage. You should also check if the insurer has a dedicated claims department. You don’t want to waste hours trying to explain to a keen claims adjuster that your chosen mechanic should repair it. The good news is that quite a few companies provide coverage for these vehicles.
- They Are Not Regular Cars
Regular personal policies include daily activities of commuting to work, going to shops, taking children to school, making social calls and taking family road trips. These cars are not suitable to meet daily private transportation needs and are not used for this purpose. You would probably have restrictions as to where and when you can drive them as well as limitations on yearly mileage. You can still find policies with flexible mileage and usage conditions depending on the type of auto.
- They Are Not Any Old Vehicles
When you have an older automobile it may not be worth worrying about it at all due to its low valuation. However, vintage cars will be more valuable when they are older. Therefore they should be insured for their “stated or agreed value” to safeguard the investment in them.
- Some Collector Cars May Not Be for the Roads
You may have further driving restrictions with some rare and collectible autos. They may be allowed to be driven in shows and rallies but you may have to arrange transportation for them to be taken to those shows. In other words, you may not be able to drive them to those shows or for any other fun activities on public roads. You need to check the additional conditions on the policy. For example, you may have to have another vehicle for daily commute and transportation needs.
- You May Be Able to Insure Them While Being Restored
You should make sure that they are protected the moment you pay for them. There are carriers who include the restoration process. This will make sure that your asset is protected even when it is being worked on in a private repair shop. They should also be covered while they are in transport. Discuss these requirements with the carrier or broker in detail.
- Classic Automobile Insurance Is Usually Cheap
Quite a few of collectors vehicles are not fit for the roads as they don’t have modern safety features and some of them may not even have seat belts, forget about airbags. Even highly modified ones may not be as comfortable as modern vehicles. This may seem to be an issue for underwriters as well as their high price valuations.
However, they are not regularly driven and this offers a huge comfort for carriers. As long as you agree not to drive them more than certain miles a year (about 2000 miles usually) you should be able to find cheap classic car insurance coverage. If they are mostly sitting in a parking garage the risks of accidents and theft is pretty low. Hence you shouldn’t be scared about having to pay high premiums.
- Collectables Have Unique and Rare Parts
They cannot usually be taken to any garage and get repaired. The classic car insurer must understand and agree that these limited auto parts will cost them more money to find and fit. The policy should have provisions to allow getting it repaired the way it should be (preferably in your chosen garage) in order to keep its value. Try to make sure this is clearly stated in the policy.
- Definition of Classic Cars Can Be Wide
The definition for the purpose of coverage can be wider than you think. Antiques, classics, muscles, exotic and special interests, street rods, some modern models, trucks and high value replicas may all be considered suitable for collectors vehicle insurance, depending on the provider and state rules, which also determine if they can be driven or not.
- Special Coverage and Policy Conditions May Apply
Owners of these vehicles should seek special coverage, be aware of additional conditions attached to it and different terminology in them. Mileage and usage limitations are the obvious ones to look out for. Terminology may be different as well and owners should familiarize themselves with them. For example, typical autos would be paid up to their actual cash “book” value at the time of a claim. On the other hand, vintage autos should be insured on “agreed value” bases that require this figure to be determined at the time of policy set up.
10. You Can Shop for Better and Cheaper Coverage
They may require careful consideration for the above-mentioned reasons. This may make you think that it is harder to find what you need, let alone getting better and cheaper classic automobile insurance but they are more commonly available. You should know that many well-known traditional companies offer dedicated packages for classic vehicles as well as a few specialist underwriters. As discussed above you might as well seek out coverage that allows flexible mileage limits, use of your own mechanic for repairs, extends to restorations and shipments.
At the same time, you would love it if it is affordable as well and therefore why not look for the best prices. You certainly have options. You should get a few quotes from brokers and traditional carriers and compare them. You can certainly get a great deal that takes care of all the points mentioned above.