Motorists support three-year insurance policies to avoid rates going up every year

There is a growing demand for longer car insurance policies. Photo Getty© Getty Images

Charlie Weston

Drivers are interested in having an insurance policy that lasts for three years rather than having to renew every year.

A longer-term policy would give the policyholder the security of knowing their rate wouldn’t go up for a certain number of years.

Half of drivers asked said they would support the introduction of longer-term motor insurance, with a further 43pc saying they would be interested in hearing more about it, according to a survey commissioned by Peopl Insurance, which sells its policies through credit unions.

The survey, conducted by iReach among 1,000 people, also found one in five Irish adults don’t own a car.

People who regard themselves as working-class, Dubliners and young adults were more likely not to drive, the research found.

Twice as many working-class people as middle-class people don’t own or drive a motor vehicle. Dubliners are almost twice as likely as the national average not to drive.

People in their late teens or early 20s are the least likely to own or drive a vehicle.

Car ownership is highest in Connacht and Ulster, with 93pc of people living there owning a car.

This might reflect the infrastructural differences throughout the country, Peopl Insurance said. Many people living outside cities have no option but to drive.

Chief executive of Peopl Insurance Paul Walsh said long-term motor insurance was a relatively new concept that was being explored in some countries. “Although it has yet to be introduced here, it is a definite possibility in the years to come, and it seems there is an appetite within the market for the option,” he said.

He said a longer-term policy would give the policy holder the security of knowing their rate wouldn’t go up for a certain number of years,.

But a possible downside is that customers could lose out on the price drops they might enjoy when renewing their cover annually. He said the fact that more than eight in 10 people in the country drove was “pretty substantial”. Many of these could be overpaying for their car insurance by not shopping around at renewal time, he added.