Car thefts continue to rise across Ontario and insurance companies are developing new ways to help address the problem. In response, some insurance companies are imposing a high-risk premium surcharge on vehicles that are most often targeted and stolen by thieves, while others are incenting consumers to put anti-theft devices in place by offering discounts or installation cost subsidies.
Some of the high-risk vehicles that an insurance premium surcharge can now apply to include:
- Acura RDX
- Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra 1500
- Dodge Durango
- Ford F Series Trucks
- Honda CR-V
- Jeep Grand Cherokee and Wrangler
- Land Rover and Range Rover
- Lexus RX300-500
- RAM 1500-3500
- Toyota Highlander
What to do if you receive a premium surcharge for a high-risk vehicle
To remove the premium surcharge, some insurers are requiring certain theft deterrent devices to be installed on identified high risk vehicles.
In some cases, the Tag Tracking system is specifically required.
Canadian-based Tag helps prevent theft in two ways: First, they install a varied number of tracking devices throughout a vehicle. These devices are wireless, difficult to locate, and use an anti-jamming technology to prevent them from being disabled. The devices can track stolen vehicles at any time throughout North America and they have a 24/7 team assigned to locate the vehicles.
The second way that Tag helps prevent theft is through deterrents. The Tag logo is etched into the driver and passenger windows alerting thieves that the tracking system is installed on this vehicle.
While some insurance companies require a Tag Tracking System be installed to avoid a surcharge, other companies are offering discounts once Tag is installed, and some companies are even offering to pay the installation fee.
Other Ways to Protect Your Vehicle
A steering wheel lock is also a visible deterrent that signals to thieves that the car is immobile unless the lock is removed. They are often made of very strong material, slowing a thief’s ability to get away.
Another option is a brake pedal lock that attaches to the steering wheel in the turned position and the brake pedal. It prevents theft by immobilizing the steering wheel and the brake pedal.
Finally, a wheel and tire lock attaches to the wheel’s rim and is designed to prevent the car from being driven away. It also stands as a visible deterrent to a would-be thief.
For some insurance companies, simply submitting a photo of one of these theft deterrents can help avoid premium surcharges for high-risk vehicles.
Talk to a Broker about Auto Theft
Automobile theft in Ontario is an evolving issue and many insurance companies are taking different approaches to address vehicle theft costs. Approaches can vary from premium surcharges to discounts to subsidized anti-theft device installations. This can make it difficult to understand which approach may be best for you and your vehicle.
That’s why we always say it’s best to use an insurance broker and consult with them on which solution may work best for your situation.
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Staebler Insurance is a general insurance broker specializing in car insurance, home insurance, small business, and commercial insurance. Staebler brokers proudly serve Kitchener, Waterloo, Cambridge, Guelph, Stratford, Listowel, Fergus, Elora, Wellington County, Perth County, Waterloo Region and southern Ontario. Click here to get started.