Affordable Protection & Peace of Mind
Taking the steps to purchase a policy for an old classic car or street rod which may be far from "show room perfect" is usually avoided. Many fear high prices, poor coverage, or too many restrictions being placed on use. There are, in fact, many options out there and they're not as expensive as you might imagine. Standard auto premiums can cost up to 500% more than specialty insurance policies. And, you can usually find a policy which is just right for your particular needs.
Many people select a policy from their traditional auto insurance carrier, not realizing that this can be robbing them of valuable coverage not offered by standard auto insurance. Specialty insurance policies are also less expensive than those through your standard insurance carrier (even policies with multi-car discounts). Standard auto insurance typically pays "Actual Cash Value" (ACV), also called "depreciated book" or "replacement cost minus depreciation." The older a car is under this type of policy, the less value it has - regardless of the premium you pay. Some offer a "Stated Value" policy. These are better than an ACV policy because they allow youto "state" a value greater than its depreciated "book" value. But, the Stated Value policy still depreciates vehicles. The best collector policy is called "Agreed Value" - meaning the full insured value of the vehicle is guaranteed - no depreciation and no hassling with an adjuster trying to prove your vehicle's value.
One example is a policy offered by Grundy Worldwide Insurance called Collector Car Insurance. This insurance is very affordable, and YOU have control over much of the cost because you actually work with Grundy to arrive at an "Agreed Value" when your policy is written. If an accident or theft occurs, you receive the agreed upon value - no questions asked! A car with $20,000 in restoration costs could be insured for about $120 per year. There are no restrictions on the number of miles you can drive, or how often you drive, as long as it is not your daily driver. (See other insurance options below for daily drivers.)
Another policy for collector cars offers coverage while your vehicle is in the process of being restored. What's unique about Restoration Coverage is that the policy value can increase as the restoration continues. So, as the value of your car (and the money you have invested into it) grows, so does the amount of coverage on your policy. We think this is a terrific "peace of mind" policy, and embraces the gift of classic car restoration - to get out on the road and enjoy your ride!
For more information on insurance for your classic car or street rod, try contacting the following insurance companies who specialize in these policies.
Grundy Worldwide Insurance
Hagerty Classic Insurance
J.C. Taylor Insurance
Heacock Insurance Group
American Collectors Insurance
Classic Auto Insurance
Condon & Skelly
Northeast Classic Auto Insurance
"Chrome" by American National
Collector Car Insurance Agency
Motorsports Insurance Services
Other options exist as well, including policies for Daily Drivers which are usually far less than going through a traditional auto insurance company. Some companies do require that you own another vehicle for "daily use", but you do not need to have it insured through them. Some put restrictions on mileage while others do not (especially if you have another vehicle as your daily driver). And, just as some place mileage restrictions, some restrict what type of driving you do (i.e. parades or shows only), and age restrictions (most will not insurance drivers under 25 years of age...others 30!). Many companys offer all-in-one policies which insure all of your vehicles at significant savings.
Appraisals are usually never necessary, although most require photos of your vehicle to help determine value. Some insurers may dig a little deeper into the mechanical and aesthetic modifications made to your car, its horsepower, suspension system, paint, etc, but this usually helps to give you a higher Agreed Value if desired. At Motorheads Performance, we advise you to keep all of your restoration records (detailed lists of the work performed, photos, and the receipts for all parts and labor), as this will help greatly when establishing value.
At Motorheads Performance, we suggest comparison shopping, checking the agency's rating, their level of customer service, and details of the policies offered in addition to pricing. Research all programs before making a final decision. For such a low cost, collectors insurance is a worthwhile investment. We recommend Restoration Coverage for all of our customers while they are having partial or full restoration services at Motorheads.