Third party, fire and theft car insurance explained

When it comes to car insurance, there are three types of policy to choose from. These are – comprehensive, third party, and third party, fire and theft. Here’s what you can expect from third party, fire and theft car insurance.

When it comes to car insurance, there are three types of policy to choose from. These are – comprehensive, third party, and third party, fire and theft. Here’s what you can expect from third party, fire and theft car insurance.

Rebecca Goodman
Insurance expert
4
minute read
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Last Updated 28 SEPTEMBER 2022

What does third party, fire and theft car insurance cover?

Third party, fire and theft car insurance covers you for precisely those three circumstances. That means it won’t pay out if your own car is damaged in an accident.

It can sometimes be a cheaper option, but if you want cover for your car, you’ll need a different type of insurance.   

What is third-party damage?

Third-party insurance covers the cost of damage to someone else’s property. This is most likely to be another car, but you’d also be covered if you hit someone’s wall or knocked over their fence. Third-party insurance may also cover compensation costs if you cause someone an injury.

As we mentioned, it’s important to remember that this type of insurance won’t cover damage to your own car. This could leave you with a large bill if your car needs to be repaired or replaced. 

Am I covered for fire?

Your car will be covered if it’s damaged by fire (either accidental or arson). In the case of the latter, you’d need to report it to the police and give your insurance provider a crime number. 

Am I covered for theft?

A third party, fire and theft insurance policy should cover you if your car is stolen. You may also be covered for damage resulting from attempted theft

What’s the difference between third party, third party, fire and theft, and fully comprehensive insurance?

Third party – third-party car insurance is the minimum level of car insurance the law allows. It covers damage to another person’s car, along with compensation costs for injuries to other people. 

This type of cover won’t cover damage to your own vehicle or your own injuries, if the accident is deemed to be your fault. 

Third party, fire and theft – this gives you the benefits of third-party insurance, but also covers fire damage. This includes both accidental and criminal acts, such as arson. It also covers you if your car is stolen or damaged in an attempted theft. 
 
Fully comprehensive – the highest level of protection, this gives you the benefits of third party, fire and theft, but also covers you and your car – even if the accident was your fault. It’s the ‘bells and whistles’ insurance option. 

Is third party, fire and theft car insurance the right insurance policy for me?

This will come down to your personal circumstances. Third party, fire and theft insurance may be a good option if: 

  • Your car is cheap to repair and spare parts are plentiful
  • Your car isn’t worth much and you can afford to replace it if it’s written off
  • You’re confident repairing the vehicle yourself
  • You don’t drive very often.

If you’re not prepared to pay for your own repairs should you have an accident, third party, fire and theft insurance might not be the way to go. One solution is to pay into a high-interest savings account so you have money set aside if you need to repair your car. If that day never comes, you can then spend the money as you like.

What determines the cost of third party, fire and theft car insurance?

The cost of any type of car insurance depends on many factors, including your age, your previous driving history, where you live, how many miles you drive, the security features of your car and so on.

Is third party, fire and theft car insurance cheaper than comprehensive car insurance?

You’d be forgiven for assuming that third party, fire and theft policies are cheaper than comprehensive car insurance. But that's not always the case. That’s why it’s so important to compare quotes from a range of insurance providers.

As third party policies tend to attract higher risk drivers, meaning insurance providers are more likely to have to pay out. This is why third party, fire and theft could actually cost you more than comprehensive insurance.

According to our data, in June 2022 the average comprehensive premium was £535[1], while third party fire and theft came in at £804 on average[2].

However, the price you get depends on your individual circumstances, so it’s always worth comparing to find the right policy for you at a price you can afford.

[1]51% of our customers were quoted less than £534.62 for their fully comprehensive car insurance in June, 2022.

[2]51% of our customers were quoted less than £803.30 for their third party fire and theft car insurance in June, 2022.

Frequently asked questions

How much does third party, fire and theft insurance cost?

How much you pay for your policy will depend on your individual circumstances. That’s why it’s worth taking a few minutes to get a range of quotes. 

What factors determine the price of third party, fire and theft car insurance?

How much you pay for your car insurance depends on many factors, including your age, driving history, where you live and your annual mileage

Can I get a no-claims discount with third party, fire and theft insurance?

Most car insurance policies let you build up a no-claims discount, and third party, fire and theft cover is no exception. Check with your insurance provider for details. 

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