How to Get Cheap Antique and Classic Car Insurance

When it comes to vehicles, classic cars are absolutely at the top of the pyramid, with their amazing features setting them far apart from the rest of the crowd. Unfortunately, as is typical for anything that attracts attention, classic cars tend to attract a decent share of thieves and vandals. Additionally, because classic cars are rare and tend to be expensive, many large “major player” insurance companies and agents will not even offer insurance for them. But just because it can be mildly difficult to find the right kind of insurance for your classic car, that does not mean that you can simply drive around without any insurance. Many states require that your vehicle be insured, and you can face serious fines if you are caught driving without adequate insurance coverage.

Finding the right kind of insurance for your classic car is going to take a little bit of time, and a lot of research. Even more research will be involved if you are set out to find the cheapest available antique and classic car insurance available. There are car insurance companies out there which specialize in insurance options for antique and classic cars. Additionally, there are large automobile insurance companies which offer specialized insurance including antique and classic car insurance, but you will have to do a decent bit of searching in order to find them. A good place to start is with insurance companies like Hagerty, Leland west and Norwich Union which all specialize in antique and classic car insurance. It is important that you weigh a lot of different options, because the costs associated with antique and classic car insurance can vary wildly depending on which automobile insurance provider you go with. It is also important that you determine what each insurance company will value your classic car at, in order to make sure that you are going to be insured for the full value of your car. Traditional car insurance values the car at the cost to replace it, minus any depreciation that it has experienced. This is what sets antique and classic car insurance apart from traditional car insurance. With antique and classic car insurance, the value of your vehicle is typically an agreement made between you and the insurance provider. This way, you will not lose a serious investment in the event that your vehicle is ever totaled in an accident, or stolen and never recovered.

The absolute best option for you to pursue when it comes to automobile insurance for your classic car is called an agreed value policy. Before this type of policy is purchased, you are required to sit down with an agent with the insurance company in order to come to a concrete agreement for the value of your vehicle. If your vehicle is ever totaled or lost, this is the amount that will be paid by the insurance company. This is also the point where you will receive a quote for the monthly payment. Another thing that sets antique and classic car insurance apart from traditional car insurance is the fact that antique and classic car insurance premiums are typically significantly smaller than what you will pay for traditional car insurance. However, not just anyone can acquire antique and classic car insurance, so before applying you should make sure you qualify for all of the following criteria:

o Many antique and classic car insurance policies require that you meet a specific age limit. This is to insure that the driver(s) on the policy have adequate driving experience and are not in jeopardy of causing an accident. This makes it difficult for young and new drivers to acquire automobile insurance, even if they are driving an antique or classic vehicle.

o Many antique and classic car insurance policies have also imposed a minimum age limit for your vehicle, in order to determine whether or not it can be considered an antique car. The typical limit is fifteen years old, so if your vehicle is less than fifteen years old you may have difficulty securing antique car insurance for it.

o In order to qualify for classic car insurance, there are certain limits on how your classic car can be used. For example, you must have a garage or some other form of protective storage to park the vehicle in. Additionally, you cannot use your classic car for any business purposes. Finally, there is a limit on the number of miles that you can put on your vehicle every month or year. If you go over the mileage limit you can but your vehicle in danger of losing its protective insurance. Because of the imposed mileage limit, you must also be able to prove that you have another vehicle which is used for normal driving.

What to Consider When Buying a Classic Car

Buying a classic car is, for many, the fulfillment of a lifelong dream. Whether buying a prize example of their first car 30 years on or reliving childhood holidays in a fine example of dad’s old saloon, classic car ownership is about enjoyment and relaxation. But the sheer enthusiasm with which many people enter into the purchase can sometimes blind them to the harsh realities of owning and running a classic car.

I have bought and sold many cars in my years running the UK’s largest classic car hire company. In that time I have learnt the hard way how to buy classic cars well. I bought my first classic car in 1993, a rare Alfa Romeo Alfasud Ti in black. It was my dream car, having cycled past an identical example every day while at school. I did my research, buying copies of all available Buyers’ Guides and I knew exactly what to look for and what to avoid. Unfortunately, what none of these guides told me was the cardinal rule – buy with your head not your heart. I particularly wanted a black Alfasud and when I clapped eyes on the car this was the over-riding thought in my head. It blinded me to the reality of the car’s obvious flaws, including suspect electrics and typically Alfa-esque rust holes. Floating on a wave of dream fulfillment I convinced myself that these were idle matters and coughed up the asking price to a probably flabbergasted owner.

When you go to buy a classic car bear in mind two simple rules. Firstly, it is not the only example of its kind in the world. Regardless of how closely its specification matches your desires, there will be another one out there. Secondly, picture the asking price as money in your hand – this will help you to appreciate the value of the purchase. Very often cars are bought and then paid for later, which gives plenty of time for circumspection! I strongly recommend that anyone buying a classic car takes along a friend who can be relied upon to be objective – they can reign you back when your enthusiasm takes ov er.

When I bought the Alfasud I managed to bring it back to a respectable standard, but it cost me to do so. That taught me another rule of car buying – objectively assess the cost of repairing the car before you buy it. Know the market value of any car you plan to buy – what is it worth in average condition and what is it worth in excellent condition? Objectively assess the value of repairing the car’s faults by researching the cost of trim, bodywork, mechanical work and so on. Do not under-estimate the cost of apparently minor work – scuffs and scrapes on the paintwork can cost hundreds of pounds to put right. If a seller says something is an ‘easy fix’ you have to wonder why they haven’t done it themselves.

When you go to view a classic car do your research first. Check the buying guides. Visit web forums and ask questions that are not immediately answered by your research Рgenerally forum contributors are very happy to help. Talk to the experts Рmarque experts who repair cars on a daily basis are often very happy to offer advice because you may become a customer. Talk to people who own similar cars Рa good place to start is with classic car hire companies who run classic cars over several thousand miles every year. I often get asked by would-be owners about the cars I run and I am always very happy to offer advice based on living with classic cars day in and day out. Before you view the car ring the owner first and run through a checklist of questions Рthis will save you a wasted journey.

Classic Car Insurance – A Beginners Guide For New Classic Owners

If you’ve just bought your first classic car you will need to consider not just where, but also how you are going to insure it.

As a classic car owner it matters not if you drive a perfect condition Ford Capri 3 litre from 1970, a beat up old Morris Minor from the Sixties or a sleek E-type Jaguar in British racing green, it is essential that you find the best classic car insurance cover for your cherished motor, that covers your individual risks at prices that won’t break the bank!

If you have not owned a classic car before it is important to realise that there are basic differences between what is known as a standard car insurance policy and the cover offered under one defined as classic, from a specialist car insurer.

The first thing to establish is whether your car is eligible for cover under a classic policy. One way you could do this is ask the previous owner whether it was covered under a classic car insurance policy and with which insurance company.

Different car insurance companies have different definitions of the age and type of vehicles that can be covered under this type of cover.

What might be easily covered with one provider may be excluded by another. Fortunately most online classic car cover providers provide this information on the first page of their websites, so it is fairly easy to surf around and check your eligibility with different insurance companies.

You should check that both the eligibility of the age of the car in question and also whether there are policy restrictions for your individual driving circumstances, such as your age that would prevent you from applying for cover.

The major variation between a standard policy and those offered by the classic car specialists is in the way that you use your classic vehicle, and in particular, how much you drive it. The large mainstream insurers and price comparison sites will offer cover for older cars but will charge an additional premium because of its age. They will also load the premium if replacement parts for the vehicle type are known to be expensive.

More importantly you will only be offered the current market value replacement if the car is covered under a mainstream policy and is deemed to be a write-off when you claim.

With a standard car insurance policy on a replacement like for like basis, the value of the car is often set by the market value at the time of a claim, typically taken from one of the car price magazines such as the UK’s Glasses Guide. The amount you will be probably receive for a write-off will be at the current market value of your car which is an annual depreciating amount. Inevitably, if you own a classic car and insure it under a standard policy contract, this leads to under valuation and under insurance of the true value of the car. You will also probably not be offered the salvage and a repairable classic car may often be deemed a write-off because the cost of repair is uneconomic to the Insurer.

If you purchase a specialist classic car policy you will be offered a choice of either an agreed valuation of the classic cars worth or a policy based on market value.

An agreed valuation amount is the amount that the insurance company will pay out in the event of a claim that results in a write off. This is a major benefit of insuring classics under specialist policies because it ensures that you are not just properly covered but will also receive the specialist repair services that your classic will require should you claim. It should be noted that even agreed valuation polices can change and you should ensure that the value is guaranteed for a certain period of time to avoid fluctuations in market values.

Classic Car insurance polices are therefore tailored to the needs of cars considered to be collectable and effectively the valuation is a rating factor for the condition of the car.

The other major difference between standard and classic policies is in the way that you are allowed to use your car under the terms of the agreement. Originally this type of vehicle insurance was designed for drivers who do not use their classic cars much.

All classic car policies have a limited mileage clause which only covers the vehicle for an agreed amount of miles per year. Depending upon which specialist car insurance company you use, there will be a limit to how far you can drive your classic. Some providers will only cover a couple of thousand miles per year under the policy, but many specialist providers are now offering cover up to ten thousand miles per year. These policies reflect the fact that many drivers now use modern day classic cars as their main form of transport.

As with all car insurance it is important to compare both covers and prices when shopping around. There are many specialist classic insurance providers available online today and many specialist schemes that are targeted at particular classic owners. Compare the premiums offered by these with those from the price comparison sites, but if you want to avoid disappointment if you need to make a claim, be sure to unde

A Guide To Owning Your First Classic Car

Classic Car owners tend to invest in their first classic car for one of two reasons. Many buy the more rare marques and more expensive models as collectors looking to earn a return on their investment at a future date. This is particularly true when the prevailing economic conditions make the price of money cheap, with low interest rates.

However, the majority of classic car owners invest in their first vehicle as their only car, which they put to daily use. Owing your first classic car should be more about the pleasure you obtain from driving it than the pain that they can sometimes bring you, due to their age.

If you rely on a classic car to do the school run and pick up the weekly shopping, and it breaks down every five minutes, the enjoyment and pleasure obtained from driving a cool car with character will soon be tempered by the hours you may spend in a lay-by, waiting for a breakdown truck to arrive.

So investing in your first classic may be a lottery and you may well end up with a ‘lemon’ and regrets if you do not follow certain basic guidelines when buying your first older vehicle. The secret is in choosing the right model for your needs and budget, and then locating a vehicle that has been well cared for and has already been someone else’s ‘pride and joy’.

Do not jump in with your heart ruling your head and buy the first model of the make of car you want that you see advertised on your local forecourt or trader magazine. Look for a car that is in keeping with your taste and style and if you do your research and pick wisely there is no reason why a well looked after classic car cannot give you as many years of trouble free motoring as a modern motor.

There are many considerations when you take your first steps towards buying a classic car, not least the purchase price but also the ongoing costs of keeping the car roadworthy. Some models of classic car are sold cheap and may at first appear to be a bargain, but a closer look often reveals that these particular models have known faults, prohibitive running costs or very expensive spare parts.

Running costs should always be a primary consideration for those who wish to use a classic car on a daily basis. A large 4 litre gas guzzler may be cheaper to buy initially, however it soon becomes clear when you visit a filling station why the 2 litre version of the same model commands a much higher purchase price and is more in demand by classic collectors.

In the case of classic cars that have been imported from abroad, the potential buyer should be aware that replacement parts are usually either much more expensive than their domestic counterparts, and in some cases of manufacturers that no longer exist, completely unavailable.

Once you have decided on the make and model of your preferred classic, ensure that you thoroughly research all the known problems for the car. Most classic cars have owners clubs online and a quick visit to these and related forums can provide invaluable assistance in helping you determine potential problems you might have and an indication of running and maintenance costs of the model. Furthermore, these enthusiasts are the people you will meet if you intend to show your classic or attend rallies or obtain rare spare parts, so it pays to introduce yourself to the community at an early stage.

Choosing a Body Shop for Classic Car Restoration or Repainting of an Older Car

In the market for a classic car restoration? When you have a car that is considered a classic, you may want to take it to a body shop to have it professionally restored. The process involves more than just a new paint job, and implies that it is being put back in its authentic condition, just as it was when it was new on the showroom floor. Not all body shops are equipped to handle a true restoration.

What is Classic Car Restoration?

A classic car is defined by the Classic Car Club of America as a vehicle between 30 and 49 years, while one between 50 and 99 years is considered a pre-antique and cars 100 years and older, an antique. Not all older cars meet the definition of “classic car.” The crucial thing with classics is that they represented “fine or unusual motorcars” distinguished by “fine design, high engineering standards, and superior workmanship.” Often costly at the time, they often have other distinguishing characteristics, based on their engine displacement, custom coach work, and luxury accessories. Other car organizations have different criteria, while some states consider it a classic after 20 or 25 years for licensing purposes.

Is Restoration Really what you Want or Need?

Restoration means that the body shop might need to tear the car apart to examine the condition of the components and either refurbish it with original parts or find reproduction parts and install them in an authentic way. If the car is updated or re-created to look like a fancy limited edition model, the work is not considered a restoration. Typically, the reason that people undertake a restoration is to create something of value for sale or to enter in car show.

Not every car is a good subject for restoration. The fact is, many old cars are just that – old cars. You may want to refurbish one and have it repainted for your son, but the car might not be considered a classic. When you are looking for a shop to work on an old car, you must be clear in your goals in order to select the right shop. Anytime your pay money to have work done, you want the shop to do an excellent job for you. However, your standards for repainting an older car that you love are different than if you have a car that meets the definition of classic and that you intend to use as a classic car. Having a 1947 Chevy is not the same as having a 1947 Cadillac 90 series.

Can your Body Shop Handle Classic Restoration?

Many body shops boast that they do custom work on classic cars. If you have a car that is a true classic, your standards should be higher to make sure that you have a finished product that is show worthy or able to command a higher price. You need to ask some questions of the shop. Specifically, you need to know:

What do they consider a classic car?
What have they restored?
What assurance do they offer that the parts they use are genuine?
If you have found a good shop with a track record of making older cars serviceable and attractive, you may have a great place to take your older car that you will love, but unless the shop has had experience restoring your Alfa Romeo or your 335 BMW, you might need to find a shop that specializes in the type of classic car restoration you need.