Do You Have A Teenage Driver?
If you’re like millions of Americans, you have a teenage driver in your household. It can be an exciting time for a son or daughter but a stressful time for parents. To young people, hitting the open roads is a right of passage and a sign of freedom. To the parents, it’s long nights of worry and expensive car insurance premiums.
Our three partners, Sean, Louis, and Amanda all have teenage drivers at home. They were kind enough to give some practical advice
They don’t “have” to get their license at 16. We live in a society where young people are waiting longer and longer to get their driver's license. There simply is not a rush to get one the day you turn 16. Thanks to Uber, Lyft, and pandemics keeping us at home, for many teens there simply is not a rush to get a driver's license. The longer you can wait as a parent, the more money you can save and the better prepared your teens will be to drive solo.
Show them the insurance premium. Let’s be honest, insurance premiums on 16-year olds are outrageous. Especially for boys. Sometimes our teen drivers need to see the thousands of extra dollars being spent on their insurance to truly understand why mom and dad are making such a big deal out of them driving.
Keep an open line of communication. Open lines of communication are absolutely crucial for young drivers. If the curfew is 10 pm, the last thing you want them to do is racing home to try to make it on time. An open line of communication and a little bit of grace goes a long way in instilling confidence and trust in a young driver.
Add your teen to the policy! Some insurance agencies try to cut corners and save clients money by adding a teen’s vehicle to the policy but not the teen themselves. While the policy follows the vehicle, all insurance policies have clauses that mandate all household drivers be listed on the policy. Don’t cut corners!
Consider an umbrella policy. Teen drivers add an extra layer of risk to your overall risk profile that your current insurance policy may not properly cover. An umbrella policy is an added layer of protection that goes above and beyond your personal insurance. When adding a teen driver to your policy, ask about an umbrella policy and if it is right for you.
It may not be easy, but our kids are not getting any younger. To prepare them to succeed on the road it is critical to think ahead and have honest conversations about the realities of driving. Hopefully, this list will prepare you to have productive conversations at the right time.