Vans are built to be the most adaptable vehicles on the road. Manufacturers turn out hundreds of thousands of vans every year, each one a blank canvas ready for any kind of conversion and modification. Knowing how your van has been modified is really important when it comes to insuring it.
Even if all you change is putting in a new stereo or adding roof bars you may still have to review your insurance to make sure everything is accurate. Here are five questions you should be able to answer about your van.
1. What is your Van Insurance Group?
There are 20 different groups set by a governing panel that includes members from the ABI (Association of British Insurers) and when you apply for insurance one of the first things considered is which van insurance group your van falls into. They look at factors such as costs of repairs and parts, engine capacity and weight of the van and work out which group applies to you.
2.Do you know the factory specification?
How does your van differ from its original factory specification? Don’t forget that if you’re buying a second hand van it may have already been modified by a previous owner. If you have, or a previous owner has fitted a tail lift or roof bars, you’ll need to have those changes covered in your van insurance.
3. What is on the inside?
Even if on the outside your van still looks like it rolled straight off the assembly line, there are still plenty of changes that can happen to the inside of your van. Even straightforward modifications like ply lining and racking could have an affect on your policy. In most cases any changes that add value to your van will see your premium go up but not always, so it’s important to let your insurer know and keep your policy accurate.
4. What is your van used for?
Every commercial van on the road is unique to the business that runs it. Many are fitted to provide quite specialised functions, which is why commercial van insurance will always be specific to your van. For example, tradesmen are more likely to have modified their vans with racking and storage for tools, cargo and equipment.
The simple truth is that even a paint job can change your insurance. Vans that have their business name on the side might hint at tools or expensive materials, so they can cost more to insure as they may be a more likely target to thieves.
5. What security improvements have you made?
Extra security measures like high security locks may add to your van’s value but they also add to the vans security. So even though they may have added to the van’s value, the security benefits can see your premium go down. Even if you haven’t changed the van, it may have been modified by a previous owner so don’t assume what you are getting is simply the factory specification.
Need advice on insurance for your van? Check out Direct Line for competitive rates on van insurance.