Instead of asking “how much does car insurance cost”, drivers should really be asking themselves “how much should my car insurance cost?” Car insurance prices depend on many factors, and different companies assign different levels of importance to each. While only auto insurance quotes can help you find out exactly how much you’ll pay in monthly premiums, you can still compare average rates to get an idea of what to expect.
How Much Is Auto Insurance?
So, how much does car insurance cost per month? The table below can help you find the cost of auto insurance in your state. Afterwards, you can enter your zip code to find cheap quotes.
How Much Car Insurance Do I Need?
The amount of car insurance you need really depends on your specific financial circumstances. There are 2 ways to determine how much car insurance you need to buy:
State Minimum Car Insurance
First, you need enough auto insurance to drive legally. Because each state has minimum car insurance requirements, your company will automatically guarantee that you follow state laws and buy at least the minimum amount. However, buying the minimum amount of liability coverage to satisfy your state’s laws is not adequate for all drivers.
Amount of Car Insurance You Should Have
If you are a young family living on a budget but working hard to secure your financial future, then we recommend a 50/100/50 split. This means you should buy $50,000 in bodily injury liability, $100,000 of total liability protection per accident, and $50,000 as a property damage liability limit. This amount of car insurance coverage should sufficiently protect you and your family’s assets.
If you are a middle-class family with savings, equity in your home, retirement accounts, and a growing net worth, then most insurance experts recommend 100/300/100 coverage. Fortunately for you, the cost of liability car insurance does not increase linearly or exponentially. The cost of 100/300/100 coverage is not twice as much as 50/100/50. With a car insurance quote, you will see that, once you have purchased the basic levels of protection, additional liability coverage costs a few dollars more a month.
In the end, how much auto insurance you need to buy should be a balance between how much you can afford and how much you need to protect yourself from losing everything.
Car Insurance Discounts
One benefit of an auto insurance comparison is that consumers can make sure they are receiving all the discounts for which they qualify. A quick list of car insurance discounts to look for includes:
- Multiple Policies – bundling car insurance with other policies
- Multiple Vehicles – insuring more than one vehicle with a company
- Anti-Theft – systems or devices that prevent auto theft
- Safe Driver – having a clean driving record
- Defensive Driver – taking a defensive driving course
- Military Members – limited to active members of the armed forces
- Full Payment – paying your 6 or 12-month policy upfront
- Good Student – student drivers with good grades
- Customer Loyalty – staying with a company for a certain length of time
- Low Mileage – driving less per year
- Affinity – belonging to a certain association, group, occupation, company or university
As you can see, there are a number of discounts that can help keep your costs low.
Factors That Affect The Cost of Car Insurance
Drivers who really want the cheapest car insurance can be proactive and take steps to keep their premiums low. Some of the factors that affect the cost of car insurance include:
- Gender and Age
- Marital Status
- Where You Live
- Driving History
- Type of Vehicle, Make and Model
- Auto Safety Ratings
- Amount of Driving Activity
Driving History and Habits
It’s an obvious one, but since your driving history may be one of the biggest factors affecting your car insurance rates, it’s worth discussing. Drivers with clean records get the lowest premiums since auto insurance companies believe history tends to repeat itself. If you have a history of speeding violations or car accidents, it makes sense that an insurance company charges you more.
Other drivers, specifically teenage or young drivers, may simply be considered high risk because of their age and inexperience. However, don’t worry if you’ve been involved in a collision or gotten a speeding ticket recently – all incidents will eventually fall of your driving record.
On the positive side, your driving habits can also benefit you. Drivers with no accidents or traffic tickets in more than 3 years may be eligible for a “Good Driver” discount. Additionally, if you drive less than the average American, you may even qualify for a “Low Mileage” discount.
Choose The Right Car, Make and Model
The type of car you want to insure can have a huge impact on your cost of car insurance. Generally, the most expensive vehicles to insure are sports cars or luxury vehicles.
The lure of sports cars is speed and handling, leading car insurance companies to think that drivers of these vehicles are more likely to drive irresponsibly and be involved in accidents. On the other hand, luxury cars have higher insurance costs because repairs and damages require larger claim payouts.
Meanwhile, the cheapest cars to insure include SUVs, crossovers, minivans, and family sedans from car companies such as Toyota, Honda, Ford, or Chevy (GM). For example, the Ford Escape, Honda Odyssey, Honda CR-V, Jeep Wrangler, Toyota Sienna, and Honda Accord made our list of cheapest cars to buy insurance for.
If you’re in the market to buy a new car, you may want to consider the cost of car insurance in addition to your monthly car loan payment.
Although the specific safety options may vary between insurers, safer cars have always helped drivers save money on car insurance prices by preventing accidents and auto theft. If your vehicle comes with air bags, anti-lock brakes, a traction control system, passive restraints, a collision avoidance system, an alarm system or anti-theft device, you may be entitled to a discount.
Everyone knows that banks and credit card companies offer the best interest rates to individuals with good credit scores; however, fewer consumers know that insurance companies have also started checking credit scores. The idea is that, since a high credit score indicates that a person is responsible with money and responsible behavior tends to carry over into other areas like driving, consumers with good credit histories are lower risk.
Location – Where You Live and Park Your Car
Where you live and park your car can make a big difference when it comes to your insurance premiums. Areas of high crime, especially vehicle theft, are higher risk and can increase your costs. Additionally, the weather in your city can affect the way insurance companies calculate rates.
Comprehensive car insurance covers damage due to theft, vandalism, fire, arson, floods, hurricanes, and other weather-related damages. To get the best car insurance rates, park your car in a secure garage instead of on the street.
How Gender Affects Car Insurance
Statistically, women drivers have fewer traffic violations and accidents than men of the same age. This is believed to be, in part, because females typically drive fewer miles per year than males. Families can use this information to their advantage by insuring the most expensive family car under the wife or woman’s name and making her the primary driver. You can test which combination will yield the most affordable rates when you are completing your car insurance quotes online.
Defensive Driving Classes
You may be able to save up to 10% on your premiums for 3 years just by taking a defensive driving course. The courses are available online and at driving schools, take about 8 hours to complete and cost between $30 and $50. Considering you may be able to save hundreds of dollars, driver’s education classes are a great investment to get you cheaper monthly premiums. However, before taking the course, drivers should check with their insurer and state’s DMV office to see if the school of their choice is accredited.
Car Insurance Quotes
Since car insurance is an ongoing, mandatory expense in the United States, drivers should take the time once a year to review auto insurance policies, compare rates, get discounts and make certain their premiums are the cheapest possible. MyCarInsurance123.com can help you complete a car insurance comparison. Just enter your zip code, pick a company, and compare car insurance from different carriers.