March 14, 2011

Three Reasons That Auto Insurance Policies For Men Cost More Than For Women

It's well known that auto insurance coverage is more expensive for certain groups of people. One of the broadest examples is the difference in the cost of auto insurance for men and women; men typically pay much more, assuming that they have the same driving records and vehicles as their female counterparts. Many drivers - especially men who feel unfairly penalized - wonder why this is, and whether it's possible to do anything about the discrepancy in costs.

There are a few reasons that auto insurance for men is more expensive. One is that they tend to take more chances when they drive, especially younger men. Auto insurance companies decide the cost of coverage by looking at insurance statistics; when a certain group has a higher than average incidence of claims, they charge more for their policies. Younger men are involved in more accidents, so they pay more for their insurance policies. It's worth noting that as men and women get older, the gap between the costs of auto insurance coverage gets smaller. This is because men become more responsible drivers as they get older (as do women, to a different extent). At some point, usually around the age of 65 depending on the insurance company and the statistics that it uses, women actually become riskier drivers and are involved in more accidents.

Another reason that men pay more is that the accidents that they're involved in tend to be bigger and more expensive. This is another result of riskier driving behavior. Young drivers, especially, tend to speed and ignore traffic laws. When they're involved in accidents, they stand a better chance of totaling their vehicles. From an insurance company's perspective, this is a disaster, and to avoid it, they charge men more for their auto insurance coverage. A third reason for the discrepancy is that men tend to drive more dangerous vehicles. Sports cars and fast vehicles are usually purchased by men, again, especially younger men. Car choice is a major determining factor in auto insurance rates, so if a certain group is driving a highly dangerous type of vehicle, that group will be penalized with higher rates. This affects that statistics that insurance companies report, so major discrepancies between male and female drivers' rates may be partially due to car choice.

Male drivers can keep their rates low by choosing safe vehicles, by gradually building up strong driving records, and by comparing auto insurance quotes before buying a policy. Unfortunately, it's impossible to completely overcome the gap between insurance rates for men and women, but it is possible to diminish the gap significantly with smart driving and insurance buying habits.