Jeandre

Newcomer Car Insurance

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Jeandre

Hi all.

So, one of the many new little surprises after landing and (starting to) settle in is the absolutely insanely high insurance rates - it makes the car-repayment premium look cheap 😛.  I gathered it would be quite high given the relatively treacherous driving conditions and resultant accidents during winter. Maybe it's just me, but 450-500/m for car insurance feels absurdly high. I suppose one has to just bite the bullet the first couple of years? That said, I noticed AllState has a newcomer program where they're willing to credit newcomers with up to 4 years driving experience (being the max, even if you have more) given that you can prove it (by means of the RTMC letter and previous insurance reference letters). This seems to bring the premium down on used SUV from around 450/m to 300/m. Are there any other insurance companies that have the same program? I haven't been able to uncover any yet - the usual/big names, (Aviva, PC, CAA, etc) all don't have this option. I'm not too sure how 'good' AllState is as an insurer - received mixed feedback from people I spoke to regarding them. On the other hand, if they're the only ones that provide such a program, I guess I'm stuck with them?

Any advice would be great. :)

Jeandré

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Nelline

The advice I always give to drivers new to Canada is to buy an older car cash and just get the minimum insurance - it is Comprehensive Insurance which is absurdly expensive in the first 3 years. If you buy a relatively new car or finance one, you HAVE to get comprehensive insurance to protect your investment, right? But a cheapie car, you can take the chance that it might get stolen or badly damaged, as long as you have the minimum legal cover you're fine.

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MaryJane

Initially we were insured with Desjardins. For a new SUV, I got $350 monthly (which was insane at the time) but I took the bullet because the other quotes I got were even crazier ($650-$1000).

So shop around.

Anyways, it does get better for each year you drive with no claims or accidents.

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Chayne

We’re insured with State Farm (I think their name is changing to Desjardin) and they took into account our insurance and driving history. We’re paying $223 pm for a 2017 SUV.

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GrantM

At the time that I landed only Intact Insurance would recognize my previous driving experience. We since moved to State Farm (Desjardin) because when we bought our house Intact's premium to insure our home was ridiculous and it made more financial sense to move to the plan with a lower premium for the suite of insurance.

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M-N
5 hours ago, GrantM said:

At the time that I landed only Intact Insurance would recognize my previous driving experience. We since moved to State Farm (Desjardin) because when we bought our house Intact's premium to insure our home was ridiculous and it made more financial sense to move to the plan with a lower premium for the suite of insurance.

This is what we did too.  :) 

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JohanR

Guess we are fortunate.. Never had to pay that crazy amount for insurance for the car. But insurance in general is ridiculous. 

 

@Jeandre, what SUV re you getting that it is so expensive?

@Chayne, see we are neighbors. 

Edited by JohanR

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Chayne

@JohanR howzit neighbour 

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OutOfSa

It's every new arrivals nightmare.

But it does come down each year - (make sure you're ontop of the company otherwise they forget to improve your status)

Don't get tickets - that will cost you dearly.  Insurance companies are notified very quickly (usually) and they peanalise you with relish.

Try not to drive "Canadian" which is your front bumper on the rear bumper of the car infront - even in snow at 120km/h on an icy freeway.  

Hitting someone from behind will land you 100% at fault and possibly in court - just like the kid that works at our company - distracted driving for rear ending and totalling his and the car I front.

Big doodie.....

I'm not sure if there is any other insurance than comprehensive in Ontario?  Anyway they told me the cost is in liability not the car.   I think that there's truth in that as a teen in the same car as me pays about $400 more than I do.

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M-N
15 minutes ago, OutOfSa said:

It's every new arrivals nightmare.

But it does come down each year - (make sure you're ontop of the company otherwise they forget to improve your status)

Don't get tickets - that will cost you dearly.  Insurance companies are notified very quickly (usually) and they peanalise you with relish.

Try not to drive "Canadian" which is your front bumper on the rear bumper of the car infront - even in snow at 120km/h on an icy freeway.  

Hitting someone from behind will land you 100% at fault and possibly in court - just like the kid that works at our company - distracted driving for rear ending and totalling his and the car I front.

Big doodie.....

I'm not sure if there is any other insurance than comprehensive in Ontario?  Anyway they told me the cost is in liability not the car.   I think that there's truth in that as a teen in the same car as me pays about $400 more than I do.

This. And also getting a dashcam may be a good idea too.  

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Jeandre

Thanks for all the advise. Much appreciated.

I ended up going with Desjardins, as they came in the cheapest. Not too bad, from what I gather is 'reasonable' in Canada - they quoted around 253/m for 'full cover' (as they put it) with a 500 deductible on collision and comprehensive claims, 1m liability and some other 'nice to haves', on a 2015 SUV. But then gets reduced to around 220/m if you opt in for the driving behaviour app. 

After spending about a week phoning and getting quotes from every tom, dick and harry, 😛 it turns out there are a few companies that will 'credit' your history. AllState, Desajdins, ScotiaLife, CAA (after some struggle) and CIBC (I believe they're underwitten by the same crowd as Scotia). ScotiaLife actually came in a just just above Desjardins. Nevertheless, they all seem to follow the same philosophy when it comes to applying the credit: they'll only give you credit for driving history matching uninterrupted insurance. Ie: if you have a RTMC letter that proves you have 10 years driving experience, but only reference letters (without claims, etc) going back 3 years (uninterrupted) then you get 3 years 'back dated' history. Or at least this is what I could deduce from them. In my case I had a claim (not at fault) around 4 years ago, but the reference letter did not state 'not at fault', and getting the old insurer in SA (being the key factor in this sentence) to change a standard system generated letter is virtually impossible. So they credited me with the history up to that letter.

Interestingly enough, the one guy said that he could pick up on the MTO system that they applyied a 'first obtained' date to the same date that I received my license in SA. So it seems they do actually 'credit' (or something similar) your license, with the RTMC letter details, at the MTO. Although this has no bearing on the insurance, unfortunately.

Hopefully it is a steady decline in premium from here, fingers crossed. With the slower speed limits and (nearing) winter conditions, one has to just stay cautious. Especially since the traffic violation system is linked with the insurance companies. A speeding ticket is no longer just an annoying piece of paper you through away. :P

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