Do you need an insurance coverage for your car? A lot of Nigerian car owners don’t really care much about ensuring their cars. They feel car Insurance is just a document required to avoid police extortion.
In Nigeria, car Insurance doesn’t hold much power when an accident occurs. For most road users, it’s just a precautionary measure to avoid extortion by road safety officials. And the process of acquiring them also makes it appealing to be considered as Insurance.
Someone questioned, who need car Insurance in Nigeria? If you consider the rates of denting cars, especially on Lagos roads, and denials of any wrongdoings, you won’t think there’s any value for car insurance.
But car Insurance is not just about securing your own car. It also involves securing the cars of others whom you may clash with on the road. It equally saves you from high cost of repairs, especially when you are low on finance. So, how do you go about buying a car Insurance the right way? Let’s even understand some things about car Insurance.
Why You Need Car Insurance
The first thing you should ask yourself about getting an Insurance for your car is, why do I need car Insurance? The answer should help you know how best to get an insurance policy for your car. The main purpose for car insurance is to provide adequate liability protection for you. Some insurance bonus can even include car wash tickets and AutoGas refill.
Here are the two important covers for car insurance policy:
- Injuring or killing someone during a car accident
- Causing damage to other people’s property
These damages can only be claimed if it was caused with your insured car. That’s the reason the policy is a coverage on the car and not on your person. That doesn’t exclude death coverage in car Insurance. If you need a personal insurance, the car insurance doesn’t give you that.
How To Buy Car Insurance Cheaper
Is there really any way to buy car insurance cheaper? Well, that would depend on what coverage you are paying for, the insurance company you are buying it from, and the value of the coverage they are offering.
But here are some tips to consider when buying a car insurance:
- First, decide on how much coverage you need
- Fill out an application with multiple insurance companies
- Let them give you quotes
- Try comparing multiple car insurance quotes
- Pick the right insurance company for your car policy and get insured
Let’s even look at the different types or classes of car insurance and their coverage.
What Does Liability Insurance
According to Investopedia, car liability insurance can only covers injuries or damages to third parties and their properties. It does not cover the driver or the driver’s property. That would require another separate policy cover.
Liability coverage helps to pay for the costs of the other driver’s property and the cost of their medical injuries. But only if you are “at fault” in an accident. If you are, your Insurance will pay the damages for property and any injuries sustained by the other driver, up to the limit of your policy coverage.
To compare liability insurance with full coverage, see liability insurance as only a cover to other drivers damages or injuries sustained in an accident that’s caused by your driving. While full-coverage policies also includes a liability insurance, but with additional protection to cover damage to your own vehicle as well.
What Collision Insurance Covers
Collision coverage takes care of your own car only, whether it’s damage during an accident caused by you or by the other driver, who doesn’t have enough insurance coverage to pay for the damage.
However, you may not need to get a collision coverage if you own your car outrightly. But it can help you cover for some hefty cost of either repairing or replacing your vehicle, when you get into an accident.
The absence of a collision coverage would make you personally liable to any accident that you caused.
What Comprehensive Insurance Covers
There’s so much fuss about comprehensive insurance in Nigeria. But let’s begin to debunk some wrong impressions about this comprehensive policy. We are going to look at what is under this comprehensive coverage and what it doesn’t quiet cover.
Comprehensive coverage pays to repair or replace a covered vehicle that’s stolen or damaged by something other than collision or rolling over. For example, damage caused by fire, wind, hail, flood, theft, vandalism, falling objects, and hitting an animal is covered.
Comprehensive coverage may be a worthwhile investment if you have a newer car and want to help protect your finances in case of theft or damage. Consider whether you could afford to pay for expensive repairs to your car or replace it. If not, comprehensive coverage may be worth the cost for you.
Here’s what your comprehensive car insurance policy will not help cover:
- Damage to your car from a collision.
- Your medical expenses.
- Your legal fees.
Moreover, collision coverage only comes into play when a driver gets into a car accident. But a comprehensive policy is an entirely separate coverage from collision. It’s coverage involves different types of loses that may not be as a result of driving the vehicle.
It includes the following as well:
- Hail or some natural disaster
- And fallen trees.
What Does Full Coverage Insurance Covers
Most of what it covers include liability, comprehensive, and collision coverage. However, it can also cover personal injuries, medical payments and uninsured vehicles.
According to Insurance.com, the main benefits of having a full car insurance coverage is that you will have more protection.
Although, liability insurance and full coverage seem similar, but they are actually different. A minimum liability insurance covers damages to the other driver. While a full coverage protects only you against cost of damages to your car, and it doesn’t include the other driver.
Tips On Best Car Insurance Companies
In Nigeria, one needs to ask pertinent questions when picking a car insurance policy. While most of the questions can be answered correctly at the time of buying the insurance, there may arise some complications during claims.
But here are some of the things to know before you buy insurance:
- Can the insurance company settle claims fast? If a car policy cannot provide settlement within 24 hours, it lacks some credibility. At least the company should provide some form of alternative while filling your claims or pursuing an investigation.
- What about Value Deductions? Some companies deduct some claims by reducing the value of the car insurance when paying claims. If the insurance company doesn’t pay full claims as stated in the policy, without tricky clauses, they are not the right insurance company for you.
- Do they also have any kind of discounts? Some insurance companies give gender based discounts. Some also give discounts to the disabled, discounts, and to females or the elderly. Find out what discounts are available and if you qualify for it.
- Will there be any cashbacks? It’s not every time you insure a car that there would be accidents to help claim your insurance payments. But a good insurance company should create room for cash backs to customers who didn’t make any claims within a certain period of time. Find out if your insurance company provides any form of cash back.
What’s Car Insurance Premium?
A premium is actually a regular payment you make to your insurance company for the coverage you bought from them. It’s often paid monthly, or every six months. The payment of premium is what ensures that your insurance company is equally liable to cover your car liabilities.
How much you pay for each of the class of car insurance would depend on the amount payable for your cover within a defined period.
TheBalance website captured it more clearly. It defined it as the amount the insurance company charges for the insurance policy you are purchasing. Furthermore, your car insurance premium is the cost of your car insurance.
Car Insurance Rates In Nigeria
According to GetInsurance, the possible rate for car Insurance in Nigeria is N112,000 annually for a Toyota Camry. That applies to insurance policy from Niger Insurance, Mutual Benefits, and Axa Mansard. But Cornerstone Insurance and Leadway Insurance, both have much lower rates at N100,000 per annum. Old Mutual, Law Union & Rock, and IGI Insurance are higher at N125,000 per annum.
Depending on the insurance company, that amount could either cover for just a basic car Insurance or for the comprehensive policy. Some even have a plus package that gives better cover than the comprehensive. These rates here are just the basics.
Tips To Lower Your Car Insurance Rates
In Nigeria, if your want to get a lower car insurance rates you have to negotiate. But don’t reduce your policy coverage in the process. Some insurance companies would agree to a lower rate based on the number of policies you are willing to buy. Be careful when negotiating lower rates so you don’t get your coverage cut down in the process.
However, you can also do the following, ask different insurance companies for their different rates and coverage plan. Here’s what to do.
- Enquire from different insurance companies
- And compare their insurance costs
- Ask about their deductibles, compare which one is higher
- You can also ask for reduce coverage if your car is used car already old
- If you already have another policy with the company, this may help to get lower rates
Disadvantages Of Cheap Car Insurance
As good as cheap car insurance may sound, there are also some disadvantages. Let’s look at just some of them. Sometimes the coverage you get might not cover serious accidents. That can affect you in the event of an accident.
It may even be that it’s something you can fix on your own, not costly or does it require the delay associated with insurance claims. It can affect you and keep you without a car after you have filled a claim.
Most insurance companies don’t handle customer services well. They don’t clarify their policy rules when buying their insurance, and they bring up trump up clauses during claims. And you may not even know there are some high deductibles from your claims.
There are several reasons Nigerian don’t trust insurance companies, but one cannot ignore getting a suitable car insurance coverage to forestall incidents when you don’t have the immediate finances to cover them on your own.
Inasmuch as it’s easy to buy up a N5,000 cheap insurance policy from a Micro Finance bank, or right at the motor park, these kind of insurance are not better than tissue papers. You might as well not waste that money on it.
Get an insurance that really provides you some form of cover. It doesn’t really cost much to get a proper car insurance in Nigeria. If compared with other countries, Nigeria still offers the cheapest car insurance coverage.