If you’re considering full coverage insurance, it’s important to know what it is and how much it may cost. Finding cheap full coverage car insurance isn’t impossible. While how much full coverage insurance costs depends on your age, gender, driving history, state, insurance company, and deductible, the average cost of full coverage auto insurance can range from expensive in California, New York and Connecticut to affordable in Texas, Ohio and North Carolina. Similarly, average full coverage insurance rates vary between companies, with GEICO charging $110 per month, State Farm charging $117/month, Allstate priced at $134/month and Progressive quoting $139.
In the end, getting the best and cheapest full coverage insurance comes down to shopping around and comparing prices, policies, and carriers. After all, if you have a clean driving record and quality for multiple discounts, then your rates should be below the average.
Below, our guide will explain exactly what full coverage insurance means (e.g. comprehensive and collision), the factors that will affect your premiums, and ultimately how to get the best full coverage car insurance for your needs.
What Is Full Coverage Auto Insurance?
Many drivers think full coverage auto insurance means they are completely covered and protected. Unfortunately, the term is misleading since the term “full coverage” generally refers to collision and comprehensive insurance, which are types of coverage added onto your liability insurance policy to protect you against specific risks and incidents.
If you’re buying a new car and need a loan, your lender may require you to have full coverage on the vehicle. This is because states only require you to have liability insurance, which pays for claims, repairs, and medical costs for other people, but not for yourself or your own property. This is where collision and comprehensive insurance fill the gaps – by paying out claims to repair your car even in an at-fault accident.
Here’s what full coverage car insurance actually includes:
- Liability insurance. In most states, there is a required minimum amount of liability insurance coverage that must be maintained by drivers. In an at-fault auto accident, liability insurance pays for the other driver’s bodily injuries as well as for repairs to their property. Liability protection does not pay for your medical bills or repairs to your car.
- Collision insurance. With collision coverage, you have protection that pays for your car’s repairs even if you cause the crash with another vehicle or object.
- Comprehensive insurance. Comprehensive coverage extends your vehicle’s protection beyond wrecks and covers you for non-accident related incidents and costs, such as theft, vandalism, weather, fire, animals, falling objects, etc. What your comprehensive insurance protects you against is detailed in your policy.
As you can see, because full coverage auto insurance does a much better job of protecting you against a variety of damages and injuries, it is naturally going to cost more. However, this doesn’t mean you can’t find affordable rates if you know where to look.
How Much Is Full Coverage Car Insurance?
At this point, you may be wondering how much is full coverage insurance going to cost, and surprisingly, not as much as you would think. If you have an auto loan and still owe money on your vehicle, your lender will likely require you to have full coverage to ensure they protect their investment.
However, unless you can find affordable comprehensive and collision insurance coverage, adding this coverage to your policy only makes sense if you absolutely need it. And getting low cost full coverage auto insurance is going to be a lot more feasible if you have a clean driving history with no accidents or speeding tickets.
To give you an idea of premiums around the country, here’s the cost of full coverage insurance in California, New York, Texas, Florida, Massachusetts, New Jersey, Georgia, and Michigan.
|Los Angeles, California|
|Newark, New Jersey|
|New York City, New York|
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If you’re in the market for a new car, then you’ll want to compare full coverage car insurance quotes to start planning your budget. Depending on the vehicle you want to purchase and your current insurer, you may need to switch companies to get the cheapest rates on full coverage.
Where To Buy Full Coverage Car Insurance
While full coverage auto insurance is generally available from any carrier, we reviewed the average prices from the largest insurance companies. For a policy that includes liability, collision, comprehensive, and other state-mandated coverages, here’s what each provider charged.
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As one of the cheapest car insurance companies in the United States, it’s no surprise that GEICO offered the most affordable rates with the best coverage. Nevertheless, the other largest insurers in the country weren’t far behind with relatively low-cost policies as well.
Factors That Affect The Cost of Full Coverage Car Insurance
There are several factors that can influence how much full coverage auto insurance costs. Here’s what will affect the cost of your full coverage.
- Your age and gender
- The make, model, and year of your vehicle
- Where you live – city and state
- How often and how far you drive each year, on average
- The number of accidents and tickets you have on your driving record (if any)
- The deductible you choose on your policy (a higher deductible will get you lower premiums)
- Your insurance company and how it calculates risk and prices
- The discounts you qualify for (e.g. loyalty, multi-car, multi-policy, safety features, etc.)
In addition to the basic liability, collision, and comprehensive coverage, it is possible to add even more options to your policy. Some of these additional coverages can include:
- Uninsured Motorist Coverage – If you are hit by a driver who has no auto insurance, uninsured motorist coverage can help you with damages, repairs, and medical bills.
- Underinsured Motorist Coverage – Similar to uninsured motorist coverage, underinsured motorist coverage can help pay your expenses if you are involved in an accident with a driver who does not carry enough protection to cover your claims. This can help when the other driver has only purchased the minimum amount of liability insurance required by the state, but the severity of the accident necessitates higher limits.
- Emergency Roadside Assistance – If your vehicle should break down and need emergency maintenance or towing, emergency roadside assistance can help you pay for some or all of these costs.
- Rental Vehicle Reimbursement – If your vehicle is being repaired following an accident, it may be necessary for you to rent a car. Having rental vehicle reimbursement coverage can help you to pay these costs, typically up to a maximum time period.
- “Gap” Insurance Coverage – With gap coverage, if your vehicle is totaled in an accident, this can help you pay the balance between the amount that you owe on an auto loan or lease, and the vehicle’s estimated actual cash value. Because your insurer is only required to pay out the value of your vehicle, there is sometimes a gap between how much your car is worth and how much you owe on it. Gap insurance makes up the difference.
Each of these added insurance options will also typically increase your premiums. However, they could also end up saving drivers hundreds or thousands of dollars in out-of-pocket expenses when they are needed.
Who Needs Full Coverage Insurance
Because most states do not require full coverage, not all drivers should get it. In fact, if you have an old vehicle that isn’t worth much, you definitely shouldn’t purchase this additional protection.
Comprehensive and collision coverage insurance makes the most financial sense if:
- You own a new or expensive car.
- You commute in heavy traffic and think there is a high probability of being involved in a car accident that is not your fault.
- You leave in an area with extreme weather, high rates of car theft, or lots of collisions involving animals.
Just be prepared for your rates to go up if you live in high-risk areas. This is when completing an insurance comparison is the most critical.
How To Get Cheap Full Coverage Car Insurance
Although there are many factors and formulas that determine the price of collision and comprehensive insurance, there are ways to get cheap full coverage insurance. For instance, while some items such as your age and gender can’t be changed, you can make it a priority to practice safe driving habits. A clean driving history coupled with a safety driving course can lower rates. Furthermore, you can choose to insure the new car under the least risky driver in your family.
There are also a number of discounts you could ask for. For example, some carriers provide multi-policy discounts, which is when you have more than one policy with the company (e.g. both your auto and your home insurance is insured with the same provider)
Similarly, carriers may also provide a discount if you have gone for a certain period of time without having a ticket or an accident. If your new car comes with various safety features such as air bags, anti-lock brakes, daytime running lights, an anti-theft system, adaptive cruise control, lane-departure warning systems, collision-avoidance systems, an electronic stability control system, etc.
Compare Full Coverage Insurance Quotes
In order to find affordable full coverage auto insurance, it can be beneficial to compare your coverage options with free quotes online from several different companies. With side-by-side comparisons of the policies and premiums, you can choose the insurer offering the best full coverage for your budget.