How to add a car to your auto insurance policy

Adding an additional vehicle to your policy? No problem.

Anna Swartz 1600Stephanie Nieves author photo

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Anna Swartz

Anna Swartz

Insurance Expert

Anna Swartz is a Managing Editor at Policygenius, specializing in auto insurance. Her work has appeared in Mic, The Dodo, AOL, MSN, HuffPost, Salon and Heeb.

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Stephanie Nieves

Stephanie Nieves

Property and Casualty Insurance Expert

Stephanie Nieves is an insurance editor at Policygenius in New York City, specializing in home and auto insurance. Her work has appeared in Business Insider, PayScale, Fairygodboss, and The Muse.

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Angele Doakes - Licensed Property & Casualty Broker

Angele Doakes - Licensed Property & Casualty Broker

Operations Sales Manager, Property & Casualty

Angele Doakes is a property and casualty operations sales manager at Policygenius in Durham, North Carolina. She's worked in the insurance industry for five years, and enjoys educating shoppers about a topic that's so important but sometimes difficult for people to understand. She is licensed to sell property and casualty insurance as well as life and health insurance.

Updated June 21, 2021|4 min read

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If you’ve just bought yourself a new car, or you want to add an older vehicle to your current car insurance policy, you can modify your existing policy and add the additional vehicle. 

The process is quite simple — it may not even increase your rates to add a second vehicle, depending on your circumstances and your provider. You’ll just need to contact your car insurance company with some basic information about your new ride. We’ll take you through the steps, as well as some easy ways to save money on your car insurance premiums.

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Adding a second car to your insurance policy

If you need to add a second, or even a third car to your auto insurance policy, the process is fairly straightforward. You’ll need to contact your current car insurance provider and let them know you want to make a change to your current policy. 

Most major car insurance companies make it easy to do this over the phone or even fully online. Notify your provider that you want to add an additional car to your policy — a second or third car is probably not an issue, but your provider may put a cap on the total number of vehicles that can be insured on one policy, so if you’re hoping to add a fourth or fifth vehicle, check with your provider to see if that’s even possible; you may have to start a brand new policy instead.

When adding a new car to a policy, you’ll need to provide some basic information about both your current policy and the car that you’re planning on adding. That includes:

Choosing coverage when adding a car to an insurance policy

You’ll also need to make some decisions about the amount of auto insurance coverage you want to have on the additional car. When adding a car to an existing car insurance policy, that new car doesn’t automatically take on all the same coverage options as the other car, or cars, on the policy. You’ll have to meet your state’s minimum insurance requirements.

Your insurance provider may also require you to have the same amount of liability coverage on every car on your policy. But other types of coverage, like comprehensive insurance, which covers damage to your car when it's not being driven, and collision insurance, which covers damage to your car from an accident, regardless of who was at fault, can usually be set differently for different cars on the policy.

Adding another driver to your insurance policy

While you’re adding a new vehicle to your existing car insurance policy, you may also want to add a new driver. If someone else in your household is planning on driving the added car, and they’re not already on the policy, you should add them as a covered driver.

Adding a new driver to an existing auto policy is also a fairly simple process, but, like with vehicles, there may be a limit on the number of drivers who can be listed on a policy. In order to add a new driver to your existing car insurance, you’ll need to give your provider that driver’s name, date of birth and driver’s license number, as well as any other required information.

The cost of adding a new driver to your insurance policy will depend on a number of factors, including their age, the number of years they've had their license and their driving habits. If you’re adding a teen driver to your insurance policy, you can expect a bigger cost increase. That's because teen drivers are notably more expensive to insure, but there are still ways to save, even with young drivers in the house.

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How long do you have to add a new car to your insurance policy?

When you buy a new car, your insurance company usually gives you a grace period during which the new car is automatically covered even though you haven’t officially added it to your policy yet. This gives you time to drive your new car home from the dealership and get all set up before you contact your car insurance company to add it to your policy.

That grace period may be as little as 24 hours or it may be as long as one month, but you should check your insurance company to confirm. During that time, your new car will automatically be covered by your existing coverage, but if your car insurance company doesn’t offer that provision, you won’t be able to drive the new car off the lot until you’ve added it to your policy.

Will my insurance go up if I add another vehicle?

Adding an additional car to your policy may raise your car insurance premiums, but it’s usually more cost-effective than maintaining separate policies for each car and paying multiple premiums. Many major car insurance companies offer multi-car discounts for insuring multiple vehicles on the same policy. It’s in their best interest to keep you as a customer and to reward you for your loyalty.

Easy ways to save money on car insurance

If lowering your monthly premiums is your goal, most car insurance companies offer lots of available discounts. Look into which ones are available to you and make sure you’re saving as much as you can. Discounts available through most major carriers include:

  • Affiliate discounts for members of certain organizations, employees of participating companies or graduates of certain colleges and universities

  • Discounts for bundling your car insurance with home, renters or condo insurance from the same provider

  • Safe driver discounts for maintaining a clean driving record for a certain number of years

  • Good student discounts for high-school or college-aged drivers who maintain above a certain grade-point average

  • Discounts for going paperless or setting your payments to autopay

  • Discounts if you pay your annual insurance premiums all at once, instead of in monthly payments

If you’ve looked into all the available discounts and you still feel that you’re paying too much for auto insurance, one way to save is to switch providers, and shop around and compare auto insurance quotes from other providers. A Policygenius expert can help you find auto insurance coverage that fits your needs and your budget. 

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