Western Australia offers so many opportunities to witness nature’s wonderful gifts. There are diverse landscapes and beautiful adventures that await, such as the famed wineries over at Margaret River and the sparkling waterfront of Fremantle. Most of the escapes are easily accessible, especially by car.
But some roads around the state are difficult to manoeuvre, mainly due to heavy traffic and remote places. There is also that well-known problem with wildlife, making it particularly challenging to drive at night. According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, two million registered vehicles travelled an average of 12,000+ kilometres in 2018 alone. With millions of other people sharing the road with you, it is more than necessary to take out car insurance in WA.
With car insurance, you can protect your vehicle and have the peace of mind to keep driving. But insurance is never an easy topic. It can become complex, especially with many options around. This blog post focuses on car insurance for those in Western Australia. This way, you know which ones you most likely need for your situation.
What are the Types of Car Insurance?
In WA, registering your vehicle (which is mandatory) will automatically grant you Compulsory Third Party (CTP) Insurance. As the name suggests, it is an obligation as a responsible Australian citizen. CTP insurance is the minimum required for drivers. It is a part of car registration costs that you pay yearly upon renewal.
CTP covers you in case of an accident that may have caused an injury or death of another person. This insurance, however, does not provide coverage if you’re at fault and you damage vehicles or properties, including your house, car, other assets.
Because CTP has very limited coverage, Perth, WA car owners and drivers have to pay for significant out-of-pocket expenses when they get into an accident. That’s why it makes sense to have other car insurance policies. In WA and the rest of Australia, there are three primary types you can purchase:
- Fire and Theft Insurance
This type goes well with the automatically-included CTP insurance because it covers repair and replacement costs. If your vehicle got stolen or is damaged by fire, it will automatically be covered. Other policies offer additional coverage, such as damages caused by an uninsured driver. Note, however, that there is a specified limit for repair or replacement cover.
- Property Insurance
Most of the time, car accidents result in damage to property, which involves massive costs, especially if you are unprepared for such an emergency. With a third-party property car insurance policy, you will be covered if you caused any damage to another person’s home, vehicle, or other assets. Take note that taking out this insurance does not provide protection if you damage your car or home due to a vehicular accident. It also excludes any expenses brought about by fire, flood, and other weather events. If your vehicle is stolen, the replacement costs will not be covered, as well.
- Comprehensive Cover
This type of car insurance in WA is pretty self-explanatory. It combines all the other types of insurance mentioned above. Therefore, if you have comprehensive cover, you do not have to worry about repair, replacement, and additional costs in case your vehicle is stolen. Even if the expense is a result of accidental damage, fire, or flood, you can turn to your comprehensive insurance cover to help pay for the costs. Additionally, if you are the responsible party for an accident or property damage, having a comprehensive cover will surely make the event less stressful.
While most types of car insurance mentioned above follow the general descriptions provided above, some insurers may offer extras. Ensure that you read the Product Disclosure Statement, which tells you everything you need to know about the policy you’re paying for.
Which Car Insurance in WA Should You Get?
Since CTP is automatically given and required in Western Australia, you may be wondering if there are any other types that you should take out. The answer is that the other three mentioned types are all optional.
But what about comprehensive car insurance? It is easy to see why many drivers prefer to have comprehensive cover in WA. Although it is optional, you can greatly benefit from the added protection for theft, fire, and repair costs. However, they all mean you will need to pay for the additional costs.
To know which car insurance you need, you should ask yourself if you can afford your car’s out-of-pocket costs for repairs or replacement. What about damages to another person’s vehicle or property? If you do not know the answer or acknowledge that you cannot pay for the significant amounts, you may want to take out other insurance policies. Also, remember that only CTP has coverage for injuries and death of other people involved in the accident.
If you cannot make up your mind when it comes to suitable car insurance policies for you, you may want to look at their features and decide from there. Generally, WA drivers will benefit from the following:
- Towing: After an accident, your insurance should cover towing expenses.
- Complimentary Roadside Assistance: Usually, towing is included in this comprehensive cover. It is a good option because you can always call your insurer for help if you run into tyre or petrol trouble along the road.
- Replacement: Most accidents result in irreparable wreckage. If your vehicle is damaged, stolen, or written off, your insurance may cover the replacement costs. That means you will get a new car, but it will mostly be based on the value and age of the car you have lost.
- No Claims Bonus: A good car insurance feature is where you get incentives for not claiming anything. If you are confident in your driving skills and history, you can get a discount.
- Age Restriction: Some insurers offer cheaper premiums for drivers within a specific age range, such as 30 to 50 years old.
Again, the more features the car insurance has, the more expensive it becomes. The rate also depends on the provider, your insurance claims history, age, vehicle type and condition, and other personal circumstances. Apart from the insurance premium, you will also pay an excess for making a claim. This amount is included in the agreement and will depend on different factors.
A prominent example is the driver’s age, where 24 years and below have higher premiums and excess fees. Statistics show they are involved in more accidents than other age groups in the country.
Will Financing a Car Affect Your Car Insurance?
Financing or taking out a loan to buy a car may have certain effects on your insurance policy. However, some will not increase your premium.
When you want to finance a car, the requirements for getting insurance will often change. You will typically have fewer choices now because the lenders want to make sure that you’re covered in order for them to protect their investment.
Lenders will generally require the following:
- Physical damage coverage
- Vehicle loss due to theft
- Year-round coverage for the car, even if you do not plan to use it for the entire time
Most lenders will only accept an application with comprehensive cover. Although this type of insurance has the highest premium, it provides the best protection. Plus, you have a bigger chance of getting approved for the car finance you plan to apply for. Are you ready to take out a car loan? Contact Loans Unlimited today!