The majority of car insurance policies have a compulsory excess as well as an optional voluntary excess. The compulsory excess is the amount you have to pay towards the cost of any claim.

When you take out an insurance policy, you will be asked if you wish to choose a voluntary excess as well. Essentially, by agreeing to pay more towards the cost of any claim, your premium will usually be cheaper. However, think carefully – can you afford to pay both the excesses in the event of a claim?

If you’ve shopped around and think you’ve found a fantastic bargain, look closely at the small print, in particular the excesses and endorsements section. Check the compulsory excess levels – this is the amount you would have to pay upfront in the event of any claim. The cost of the compulsory excess could make the policy ridiculously expensive (and more than you can afford to pay) compared to what you initially thought was the cheapest price.

Although it seems daunting now, just remember that if you drive safely, you will soon build up your own No Claims Discount which will greatly reduce the cost of your insurance premiums. Remember, driving without insurance is illegal and if you are involved in an accident that is your fault, you will have no protection against the spiralling expenses involved, not to mention the legal consequences of not having insurance cover.