Today’s favorable economy is giving classic enthusiasts renewed confidence to move forward with finding, buying and collecting their dream vehicles. In addition to experienced collectors who are enjoying a buyer’s market, younger and first-time collectors are also excited to discover a market full of affordable treasures. For specialty insurance agents, it’s a great opportunity to assist your clients with knowledge about what’s important to classic and collector owners as well as customized coverage that keeps valuable autos safe and happy.
Multi-Generational Collectors, Global Reach
Old stereotypes about the typical car collector are dissolving as new types of enthusiasts join in on this fabulous hobby. “You’ve got an older generation who’s leaving the Gen Xers and Millennials to pick up the slack,” says Rick Drewry, host of Classic Auto’s Project C10 truck restoration series and senior collector car and motorcycle specialist at our underwriter, American Modern. This new crop of collectors is not only younger, they are more ethnically diverse, and more women are taking an interest, too. Collectors are arising from all corners of the globe – and they’re not necessarily interested in the traditional definition of what’s most collectible. Rick tells insurance trade magazine Independent Agent, “It used to be that an all-original (vehicle) was the crÃ¨me de la crÃ¨me. But nowadays, you get one that’s modified and tastefully done, it’s bringing in more money than an all-original piece.” Some young collectors gravitate toward oddball niches, like inexpensive old Japanese imports, domestic coupes from the 80s and boxy early-model SUVs. “The younger generations are more into modifying cars,” Rick says. “Maybe someone wants that 1970 Chevelle because they love that body style, but they get it with a brand-new crate engine – that’s the same drivetrain as a brand-new Corvette. You’re getting muscle cars that are modified – 60s, 70s and 80s cars that are bringing in very good money and keeping the hobby alive.”
New Tricks of the Trade
A revitalized marketplace of collectors brings fresh opportunity for classic car insurance agents. New buyers often don’t realize that classic cars should be insured any differently from regular cars, and need help understanding the importance of specialty insurance benefits like “agreed value.” Young collectors tend to be more interested in actively driving their cars, where older collectors may consider their collectibles limited use vehicles, keeping them in storage for months at a time. This changes the mix of insurance needs you’ll need to discuss with your clients, because all that extra traveling and mileage increases risk. New collectors are also less familiar with auto auction events and seek out online listings. They may even prefer interacting with you -their insurance agent- online, by text or via messaging apps. Young collectors are showing big interest in car tours and other activities related to collecting, traditional car shows included. They’re looking to travel outside the world of social media -even out of the country- and connect in person over their favorite new hobby. This means agents should write policies for new-buyer and younger clients that have flexible annual mileage plans, rollover mileage, nationwide roadside assistance and options like no-cost windshield replacement and coverage out of the country. The new generation of collectors may be less likely than their parents to know how to repair and restore cars and more likely to have anti-theft devices installed. While their cars may spend long periods at auto shops, they may qualify for a discount because of that anti-theft device. The point is, these new preferences will impact insurance selection. It’s clear that classic auto agents have a huge opportunity to educate their clients as they explore the exciting world of car collecting.
The Classic Auto Insurance Difference
As an independent agent, your goal is to find the best protection possible for your collector clients. Saving them money strengthens the loyalty they give you and keeps them coming back. In partnership with Classic Auto Insurance, you can offer the coverage and options a collector wants, tailoring policies to fit their needs and doing it for less than what a standard auto policy might cost. Agent partners also enjoy a minimum commission of 10% for every new and renewed policy. To become a referring agent, contact us today.
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