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Last year van insurance customers had some welcome good news with Consumer Intelligence's Van Insurance Index finding that the average price of a premium dropped by 0.9%.

Despite this, the cost of van insurance premiums actually rose by 1.2% in the three months to December and experts predict that they will continue to rise throughout 2019.

It seems strange that the cost of premiums should rise at just a time that the government is taking steps to reduce the cost of accident claims on the motor insurance industry.

However, there are various other factors in place, not least the impact of claims involving the kinds of expensive and sophisticated technology that is becoming increasingly a feature of today's vans. Furthermore, most vans are now manufactured far from these shores so the cost of importing replacement parts only adds to the overall bill.

There has also been some convergence in the cost of van insurance to different demographics. This has been good news for younger drivers, with under 25s seeing the average premium price drop by 5.9% in 2018, but bad news for over 50s who saw the average price of a premium rise by 1.6% in the same period. Drivers who are between 25 and 49 benefited from a small price drop of 0.3%.

There was also some difference in the cost of insurance depending on how a van is used. Vans used purely for business purposes saw average premiums drop by 0.6%, while drivers who used theirs for social, domestic and pleasure policies as well saw their premiums fall by 2.3%.

Consumer Intelligence's pricing expert John Blevins commented, "The price rises in the past three months are signalling a turn in the market after a sustained period of premium reductions.

"Insurers have passed on price cuts where they can but claims costs are dictating premium rises with the increased cost of importing spare parts a major factor when repairing vans following accidents.

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