Do you need insurance for a car in storage?

Legally, you don't need insurance coverage for a car that's not being driven and is in storage. However, if the vehicle gets stolen, vandalized, or damaged in an accident or weather-related event, you'll be responsible for any resulting expenses if you don't carry insurance. Keeping your vehicle insured, even to a lesser degree, while it's in storage protects your car against threats that go beyond accidents that occur while driving.

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What kind of insurance covers a car in storage?

Technically, there's no dedicated insurance for a car in storage. The closest thing to vehicle storage insurance is comprehensive car insurance coverage, as it protects your vehicle against the types of damage it could suffer while parked on your property. Suppose a tree crashes through your garage during a windstorm and crushes your car. Without comprehensive coverage, you're out of luck. But with it, you're protected against weather-related damage caused by wind, hail, hurricanes, and fire. You're also protected if your vehicle gets stolen or vandalized.

Some insurers, including Progressive, allow you to keep comprehensive coverage while dropping collision car insurance coverage. However, if you have a car loan or lease, your lienholder will likely require you to keep your comprehensive and collision coverages at all times, even when the vehicle isn't being driven.

Learn how insurance covers your property when moving or using a storage unit.

Pro tip:

If you do drop coverages while your car is in storage, make sure to restore them before putting your vehicle back on the road so you're covered in the event of an accident.

Do I have to insure my car if I'm not driving it?

No, you don't have to insure your car if it won't be driven at all, whether that's due to the car breaking down, your license being suspended, or a change in your driving needs. But depending on your state's department of motor vehicles, you may need to submit certain forms before you cancel the car's registration and insurance. Check with your BMV or DMV, and find out your state's car insurance requirements.

Remember, if you cancel your policy, you may pay a higher rate for car insurance when you purchase coverage in the future. If you plan to have the vehicle back on the road within a few months, it may be better to keep the coverage you already have on it or consider usage-based insurance rather than cancelling your policy.

How to cancel insurance for a car in storage

If you don't want to insure your car while it's in storage for a long period, follow these steps:

  • 1. Cancel your registration

    Before you can cancel your insurance, check what your state's department of motor vehicles requires for cars in storage. To cancel your insurance, cancel your vehicle registration first to avoid creating a gap in car insurance coverage. You may need to fill out an affidavit of non-use with your state. You may also be required to turn in your plates and store the vehicle in a locked facility.

  • 2. Cancel your coverage

    Call your insurance company to find out if your insurer allows you to temporarily suspend your car insurance or if you have to cancel your policy. With Progressive, you can cancel your policy or reduce your coverages.

  • 3. Re-register and re-insure your car before you drive

    Before you take your car out of storage and drive again, you'll need to reinstate your registration and your car insurance. You'll typically first need to reinstate your car insurance as a step to register your car. Check with your BMV or DMV for what's required to register a car that's being taken out of storage.

Adjust your insurance for a car in storage

Current Progressive customers

Call us at 1-866-749-7436 to adjust your coverages or cancel your policy.

New Progressive customers

Get a car insurance quote online or call 1-866-749-7436 and we'll ask the right questions to properly insure you and your car while it's in storage.

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