Anyone who has ever had to shop around for commercial van insurance will have experienced firsthand the wide range of quotes offered by insurance providers. The truth is that different companies will use different procedures to assess the level of risk associated with insuring your commercial vehicle.
These procedures are complicated and closely guarded, but will invariably depend on several key considerations:
Your type of vehicle
A heavy vehicle with a large engine will be considerably more difficult to control than a smaller, lighter model, with a small engine and is therefore deemed to pose a higher level of risk. A large vehicle involved in a collision will also inflict far more damage, incurring higher costs to the insurer.
If your van is fitted with an alarm or immobiliser, then this makes the vehicle less attractive to thieves and in the event of it actually being stolen, a tracking device will make its recovery far more likely. This lowers the insurer’s risk and will reduce your premium accordingly.
The age of your vehicle
A newer vehicle is likely to be fitted with better anti-theft devices and present a far bigger challenge to break into than an older vehicle. An older vehicle will be more susceptible to mechanical failure, which may impact on any breakdown or recovery part of a policy and in the worst case scenario, perhaps lead to a collision. Newer vehicles also tend to be driven more carefully and require less regular maintenance.
Use of the vehicle
A vehicle that spends ten hours a day, six days a week, travelling up and down the country making multiple deliveries en route, is statistically more likely to be involved in a collision or incident, than a vehicle which makes one short journey every couple of days. The amount of use that your vehicle gets will directly affect your van insurance quote so it is worth bearing that in mind.
The type of cargo
If the goods that your van carries are particularly heavy, fragile or hazardous, this will also affect the quote you will be given. Computers and electronic equipment might be particularly fragile and liable to damage over long distances. Steel girders or other building equipment will present an extra strain for your vehicle and in the event of an accident, could add to subsequent damage and costs, whilst hazardous chemicals will pose another set of potential issues in the event of a spillage.
By being aware of these factors, you can help manage them and perhaps bring down the cost of your van insurance, or at least be more aware of how to stop it increasing.