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How long can you stay on your parents’ car insurance?

Fact-checked with HomeInsurance.com

As a young driver, you may worry about the cost of car insurance, and with good reason. Car insurance is significantly more expensive for young drivers. In some situations, it may be smart to stay on your parents’ policy for as long as possible. In other cases, it may be best to get your own policy. Learn the rules prescribed by insurance companies so you can make the right choice.

What is the age limit to stay on your parents’ car insurance?

At what age do you get kicked off your parents car insurance? Actually, there is no age limit to staying on your parents’ car insurance policy. As long as you live in the same house as your parents full-time, you’re eligible to remain on their policy. This differs from other types of insurance.

For example, the current age limit for sharing a health insurance plan is 26 years old. This is true whether you move out, get married or have a child. Once you turn 27, you’ll have to find your own plan. Individual policies also might have different guidelines.  

Can you stay on your parents’ policy once you move out?

Although age is not a determiner, the location of your residence is a very important factor in whether or not you can stay on your parents’ policy. If you’re still living at home, the auto insurance company may actually require you to share a policy with your parents. That’s because it is assumed you’ll drive your parents’ vehicles if you live at the same residence — even if you don’t use the car(s) regularly. 

Once you move out, you have the option to get your own auto insurance policy. However, you could stay on if you’re still considered a dependent of your parents; for example, if you go away to college but still technically live with your parents. If you move out of your parents’ home and are no longer a dependent, you could potentially have a claim denied by the insurance company if you don’t have your own policy in place.

Can you get your own policy if you live with your parents?

It is possible to get your own policy while living with your parents. However, you’ll need to take a few extra steps to make sure you’re adequately covered. First, you’ll likely need to get your own policy with a different company. Many times, an insurer won’t approve of two policies at one place of residence. Comparing rates from several providers will give you the best rate. 

Once you’ve found your own policy, you’ll need to proactively exclude yourself from your parents’ policy, since you are of driving age. When you’re an excluded driver, you shouldn’t use your parents’ cars since you’re expressly not included in their policy. 

Is it cheaper to stay on your parents’ plan?

The younger you are, the more expensive it is to get auto insurance. For instance, the annual premium for a teen driver ranges between $3,819 and $4,048. Once you reach age 25, your premium will drop significantly. However, it would still likely be much more expensive to get your own plan. Once you reach your 30’s, the perceived risk of your driving ability will drop in the eyes of insurers. If you live at home till then, you’ll likely see the lowest rates by staying on your parent’s policy. 

There are a few different factors that make it cheaper to stay on your parents’ policy. The first is that as more experienced drivers, parents on the policy typically add a lower risk level to balance out the risk associated with a younger driver. The exception, of course, is if your parents have a bad driving record.

Insurance companies may also offer a discount when more drivers are bundled on one policy. Called a “multiple drivers discount,” it’s one of the main reasons that it’s cheaper to have one auto insurance plan per household, rather than per driver.

Pros and cons of staying on your parents’ policy

For young drivers who are living at home, you may benefit from lower insurance rates by staying on your parent’s policy. Plus you have the added benefit of being able to share driving responsibilities with other cars at the residence. However, being on your parents’ policy does require you to reside at their residence, and any negatives on your driving record will affect both your rates and those of your parents.

ProsCons
Lower premium until you turn 25Only covered when you live at home
Covered when driving your parents’ carsParents’ rates will go up if you have an accident

How to save money while on your parents’ auto insurance policy

Even as a young driver on your parents’ auto policy, living at home, there are ways to save on insurance costs.

Good student discount

Younger drivers who are enrolled either in high school or college could qualify for a discount by maintaining a good GPA. Typically you need at least a B average to qualify. You’ll also need to be enrolled full-time.

Multi-car discount

Many insurers offer a multi-car discount when you have two or more vehicles at the same residence. All individuals on the policy must be related. Expect a discount of about 20% from the policy total, although this could vary by provider.

Temporarily away from home

If you move away from home to go to college, you could lower your parents’ premium if you’re more than 100 miles away. Since you’re unlikely to be driving their car as frequently as if you lived closer to home, the insurance company may cut you a break.

Monitoring apps

Some insurance companies have implemented driving apps that could potentially save you money. Progressive, for example, offers a discount for using its Snapshot app. It monitors driving habits and may lower your premium if you drive less frequently and at safer times of day. Young drivers with good habits can leverage this discount for more savings.

Safe driving programs

Young drivers can also earn an additional discount by successfully completing a safe driving program. If available in your state, you could save up to 8%, depending on the provider.

The takeaway

  • There’s no age limit to stay on your parents’ auto policy
  • You must live at home to qualify
  • Premiums usually drop when you turn 25 years old

Conclusion

Regardless of age, you can stay on your parents’ car insurance policy as long as you live at their house. It can be a good way to save money until you’re old enough to be out of the high risk years of your teens and early 20s. While rates overall are much higher while you are younger than 30, there are multiple ways to save on premiums while living at home on your parents’ insurance policy.

Lauren Ward

Lauren Ward is a writer for Coverage.com. She specializes in all things personal finance, including insurance, loans, and real estate.

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