Van-dalism Can Be Costly

Please excuse the Sun style pun used in the headline, but the law states that all vehicles on the road must be insured, that includes vans.

For tradesman, there are many types of insurance that need to be taken out; van insurance is a legal must, but then what about public liability, income protection and life insurances, these are all possible costs for a tradesman to meet. Sick of paying out all these different types of insurances, some may be ignored, obviously van insurance can’t be one of these, but there are ways the premiums can be reduced.

Buying an older van is a simple way to lower premiums. An older van may also encourage you to insure it third party, or third party fire and theft, because if the van is in an accident, the replacement cost may not be that great for an old van.

A word of warning with third party cover though, a van is an essential asset for a tradesman; no van basically means no income for the self-employed. Having to replace a damaged van is a capital outlay you would rather not have to make, no matter what the age.

Fully comprehensive cover gives you the complete protection, as it covers repairs to your own van as well in the event of an accident. This is obviously more expensive but measures can be taken to lower those premiums.

As with car insurance, the engine size and annual mileage will have an effect, along with the age and number of years no claims, just like with car insurance. Look out for the insurance quotes that consider no claims bonuses built up whilst driving a car, as these will lower premiums. Fitting the van with an alarm and immobiliser will also help.

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One of the biggest decisions relates to the tools. Third party will not normally cover the theft of tools. Signs on the back of a van advising that tools are not kept overnight, not only ward potential burglars from breaking in, but also remind the owner that with some policies they are not covered if stolen from the van. Insurance to cover the theft of tools can be added to comprehensive cover.

Another consideration specific to vans, is the use of a courtesy car. In our normal lives, the loss of a car whilst it is being repaired is a pain, but one that can be dealt with by using public transport or borrowing a relatives car. These options are not really feasible for a tradesman without a van, so the provision of a courtesy car is an important consideration with an van insurance policy.

Rachel Honey writes on behalf of Contractors

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