14th January 2016
Last year motorists endured ongoing hikes in their comprehensive car insurance premiums, however the final three months of 2015 delivered the steepest rise with prices rising by 7%, to stand at an average of £672, according to the latest Confused.com.
The comparison site’s Car Insurance Price Index found that this is the largest quarterly increase in premiums seen in five years, meaning that drivers are now paying £43 more than they were in the previous quarter.
In terms of an annual increase, prices have gone up by a staggering 13%, which equates to an additional £78 on motorists’ premiums, compared to the fourth quarter of 2014 when premiums stood at just £594.
Its analysis also found that while average premiums are climbing steeply for many, prices for drivers aged 17 to 20 are not accelerating at such pace.
In fact, female motorists in this age group have experienced the smallest quarterly and yearly price increases, at 3% and 4% respectively, bringing their average premium to stand at £1,558 for the fourth quarter of 2015.
Males in this age bracket also have reason to breathe a sigh of relief, with their premiums now coming in at £2,153, some 44% lower than their second quarter of 2011 peak, when they hit £3,829.
However, it is a different story for older drivers, who are bearing the brunt of the price hikes.
Males aged 61-65 are facing the largest quarterly increases of all age groups, seeing a 10% premium increase in the last three months of 2015.
Women, aged 71 and over are being hardest hit annually, with their premiums rising by 19% year-on-year, more so than any other age group.
Both men and women have seen their premiums rise throughout 2015, increasing annually by 15% and 11% respectively. The last quarter of the year saw a further jump of 8% for men, and 6% for women.
As a result, the average man’s premium now stands at £708, up £92 year-on-year, and women’s at £627, marking a £62 hike.
These increasing premiums are being felt across the UK, with motorists up and down the country subject to rising prices.
However, those in Northern Ireland have been hit the hardest. Motorists in this region have seen their premiums rise by 9%, or £69 on average, over the last quarter of 2015, and by 18%, or £125 annually – the highest increases of any region in the UK. For these motorists, their average premium now stands at £810, making it £138 more expensive than the national average.
Scotland is also facing steep rises in premiums, with the Scottish Highlands experiencing the second largest annual price increase of 16%. And it is drivers in one of this region’s postal towns that are by far the worst off, with motorists in Kirkwall subject to a year on year increase of 25% – the highest of any area in the UK.
Steve Fletcher, head of data services at Confused.com said: “Last year gave motorists a tumultuous ride, hitting them with consistent price rises and an increase in Insurance Premium Tax, both of which would have considerably dented their pockets. We’re now in a position where average premiums are at the highest we’ve seen them since mid-2013.
“Unfortunately for motorists, we’ve now seen 11 consecutive months with no premium decreases, which would suggest that the trend is likely to continue. If this is to be the case, we would expect the average comprehensive cover premium to soon exceed the £858 per year high we saw during 2011.”