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Car Mods and Your Car Insurance

July 2, 2009

Think twice before doing car mods

If you've ever wanted to customize your car to better reflect your personality and style, you might want to think twice. Many changes that you make to your vehicle may affect your car insurance rate.

The most popular changes people make to their cars include getting customized paint jobs, installing alloy wheels, new stereo systems, and custom rims and tires. Other common changes include having windows tinted, interiors redone, and having engines modified for more power.

Is customizing your car worth the expense?

Usually, the types of modifications mentioned above can be quite expensive. Certain modifications can add up to thousands of dollars to have done, and in terms of insurance, can end up costing you even more than you bargained for.

All car insurance rates are based on factory-built stock vehicles. Whenever you alter your vehicle from factory stock, you will have to let your insurance company know of the changes. Remember that if you don't report your modifications you may not be able to have those items covered if you ever have to submit a claim.

Every insurance company has different rules regarding how they deal with car modifications and customizations. Below are a few possible scenarios that show how different car modifications may affect your car insurance premium:

To tweak, or not to tweak?

Before you make any changes to your vehicle, you will want to find out how much the changes may in fact end up costing you. You'll want to make sure you consider not only the actual retail cost of your modifications, but the impact it will have on your insurance rate as well. It's also a good idea to remember that any performance enhances modifications made to your vehicle will make it tougher to insure.

If you really have your heart set on personalizing your wheels, you might want to stick to non-performance enhancing modifications, so not only will they be less expensive to install, but will hopefully result in cheaper car insurance costs as well.

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