Car insurance rates are increasing and many people are looking for the best auto insurance prices. But rates can vary greatly depending on where you live, how old you are, whether you own a home and other factors. So, where do you start? How do you know if you’re getting a great rate?
CarInsurance.com’s car insurance estimator can estimate your average monthly rate for three coverage levels and recommend the best for you in just a few minutes – without giving out any personal information.
Whether you’re shopping to insure a new car, looking for insurance for a teen or trying to find car insurance prices in different states, getting car insurance estimates and comparing quotes could save you hundreds of dollars each year.
How do you estimate your car insurance cost?
With the Car Insurance Estimator, in five easy steps, you’ll see prices for three coverage levels based on your personal profile. After getting an initial estimate, compare car insurance quotes before making any big changes. This way, you will know your premium so you can budget accordingly.
What information do I have to input into the insurance cost estimator tool?
Don’t worry – you won’t have to give out personal information to use the Car Insurance Estimator. You need to enter a few details:
- ZIP code
- Current insurance status
- Vehicle ownership status
- Homeowner or renter
- CarInsurance.com’s car insurance estimator tool will give you an estimate of what you can expect to pay for your car insurance.
- After getting an initial insurance estimate, make sure you compare car insurance quotes so you know how much your premium might be and can budget for it accordingly.
- The average rate for state minimum coverage is $511, based on CarInsurance.com’s analysis of rates from several major insurance companies for nearly all ZIP codes.
- Insurance providers use factors such as your location, age, credit history and type of vehicle to calculate your car insurance rates.
Which factors do companies use to estimate car insurance?
Various rating factors determine how much you will pay for car insurance. Which factors are used depends on state laws and internal guidelines of the insurers you receive quotes from and how they calculate car insurance rates.
In general, the main rating factors affecting the calculation of car insurance rates include:
- Type of car
- Age and years of driving experience
- Geographic location
- Marital status
- Driving record
- Annual mileage
- Credit history
- Chosen coverage, limits and deductibles
FAQs: Car insurance estimates
How does your car affect your estimated car insurance cost?
Auto insurers track which cars are involved in the most crashes and have the worst injury records. Those factors impact the cost you pay for liability insurance, which covers the damage you cause to others, not your car’s damage.
Insurers also know which cars are expensive to buy and repair or are stolen more frequently, and those factors drive up the cost of collision and comprehensive coverage.
The calculations about the risk of a certain car are made independently.
For example, you are penalized twice if you are an inexperienced driver in a car with a poor claims record. A more mature driver in the same car would pay a surcharge for the car, but not one for inexperience.
Below, we have average rates for car insurance by type of car.
|Tesla Model 3||$2,917|
How does your location affect car insurance price estimates?
Car insurance companies look at factors such as the rate of stolen cars in your area, and the number of cases of vandalism, claims and fraudulent claims, which helps insurers discern the risk associated with insuring your car in that ZIP code.
All other factors equal, your ZIP code can change your rate by hundreds of dollars.
How does your age affect auto insurance rates?
Auto insurers penalize inexperience – the less experienced the driver, the higher the rates. That’s because statistically, inexperienced drivers crash – a lot – and so they are the riskiest category of drivers to insure, so car insurance rates reflect this elevated risk.
Of course, most inexperienced drivers are teenagers and those younger than 25. So, young drivers pay significantly more, in general, than older drivers. Rates are cheapest for drivers in their 40s, 50s and 60s, and then increase a bit at age 70.
Average car insurance premiums by age
If you keep a clean record after age 25, rates typically stay relatively stable until you become a senior driver, when crash rates go up and premiums begin to rise again. Below you’ll find estimates for averages by age.
|Age||State Minimum: Liability Only||50/100/50: Liability Only||100/300/100: Full Coverage|
Coverage, in $thousands, represents bodily injury liability per person/bodily injury per accident/property damage liability per accident.
Full Coverage: 100/300/100 is liability with comp/collision and $500 deductible.
How does your driving record impact your insurance calculation?
Your driving record is paramount to a car insurance company. Safe drivers get a discount from standard rates for keeping a clean driving record. On the flip side, individuals with a moving violation (such as a speeding ticket or DUI) or an accident on their motor vehicle record are more of a risk and can face a surcharge on top of standard rates.
Generally, a minor violation such as a speeding ticket can boost your average rates by 26% to 43%. If you have a major violation like a DUI, your rates can go up even more. The more risk you appear to be to your auto insurer, the more you will pay.
How does your credit rating affect car insurance quote prices?
Insurance companies routinely check your credit rating to create your premium – except in California, Hawaii, Massachusetts, Michigan and Washington (in effect until three years post-pandemic emergency declarations) – where state law prohibits credit from being a pricing factor. And in Oregon and Utah, policies can’t be canceled or not renewed due to credit history.
Credit scores help insurance companies assess the risk level of a potential customer. Research has shown that people with lower credit scores (typically 600 or lower) are more likely to file claims.
How do I choose an insurance company in 2022?
Compare car insurance quotes on the same auto insurance coverage from at least three companies. When making these comparisons, John Yoswick, an analyst for CRASH Network, says to keep an open mind and look beyond the largest and best-known insurers when shopping for car insurance.
“There are more than 200 auto insurers, and there is often an opportunity to buy coverage from a smaller company based in your state or region,” he says.
Request insurance quotes from at least three different insurers. Be sure to compare the same car insurance coverage by using the same liability limits, identical deductibles and optional coverages when using a calculator tool or working with an agent.
In 2022, CarInsurance.com found that Progressive was the cheapest car insurance company for full coverage insurance and Geico was the cheapest for drivers with speeding tickets, crashes or poor credit.
How can you lower your insurance costs?
There are a few easy ways to decrease your car insurance premiums:
- Ask your insurer about discounts, such as good/safe driver, good student, anti-theft devices, driving courses, loyalty, multiple vehicles, bundling and more.
- Maintain a clean driving record and check your driving record for accuracy, making sure to fix any inaccuracies.
- Check safety ratings and buy a vehicle considered safe by insurance companies.
- Maintain good credit and work diligently to fix any blips on your credit report.
- Install safety and anti-theft features on your car.
- Maintain a good insurance record by avoiding unnecessary auto insurance claims.
How much does car insurance cost?
According to a 2022 CarInsurance.com data analysis, the average rate for car insurance is as follows for average annual car insurance premiums for a 40-year-old male with a good insurance score (no violations):
- State-minimum liability only: $511
- Liability (50/100/50 limits): $637
- Full Coverage (100/300/100 limits): $1,682
*The data analysis is inclusive of auto coverage by ZIP code, a 2022 vehicle, and for a driver with a 12-mile commute and a full-coverage policy.
How much car insurance do I need?
Each state requires that you have liability car insurance to drive legally. However, the amount state-mandated liability insurance pays out for accidents may not be enough to cover the expenses, leaving you to pay the difference.
Mark FriedlanderDirector of corporate communications for the Insurance Information Institute
“Chances are that you will need more liability insurance than the state requires because accidents cost more than the minimum limits,” Mark Friedlander says. “If you are found legally responsible for bills that cost more than your insurance covers, you will have to pay the difference out-of-pocket, which could be financially devastating for you and your family.”
State-mandated liability insurance doesn’t cover your own car, so you may want to increase your protection to higher bodily injury liability limits and higher property damage liability limits: $100,000 per person, up to $300,000 an accident for medical bills for those injured in an accident you cause, and $100,000 for property damage that you cause (written as 100/300/100).
Finally, decide what deductible you can afford. One of the best ways to save on auto insurance costs is to increase your collision and comprehensive insurance deductible. But remember that if you have a claim, that deductible will be your out-of-pocket expense to repair or replace your car. If you have more than one claim, you’ll have to pay the deductible each time, so choose an amount that you can pay from savings.
“Regardless of whether you want full coverage or the cheapest minimum amount, it is a good move to shop around,” says David C. Marlett, managing director of the Brantley Risk and Insurance Center at Appalachian State University. “Insurers have widely different pricing models and it is often surprising how much they can differ from one another. This is a quick and easy process that can easily save you hundreds of dollars in premiums.”
Where do you find the best and cheapest car insurance?
Finding the right insurance company can be a challenge. You want an insurer that offers great rates, but you also want one that is financially sound, handles claims quickly and fairly and provides excellent customer service.
“Getting car insurance estimates from multiple insurers will help you reduce your insurance rate. It can also help you to discover previously unattended insurance needs,” says Siwei Gao, the Thomas and Rebecca Coffey Professor of Insurance Studies at Eastern Kentucky University.
“Many people set their car insurance to auto-renew in case of an unintentional lapse of the policy. This is smart – with one caveat – you may forget to re-evaluate your insurance strategy for a long period of time. It’s a good idea to be reminded to get a car insurance estimate on an annual basis.”
Auto-Owners, Erie, State Farm, Geico, Travelers, American Family, Nationwide, Progressive, Allstate and Mercury have all been rated among the best auto insurance companies. USAA also ranks as a top insurer, but the company offers coverage only to military members, veterans and their families.
What are the types of car insurance?
To properly estimate car insurance costs, you need to understand that there are different coverage options. Here’s a breakdown of the three main types of car insurance so you can calculate the coverage you need.
Liability covers others’ property damage and medical expenses if you’re found at fault for an accident. Many states’ minimum liability requirements are so low that if you were in an at-fault accident, you could be vulnerable to lawsuits to recover damages.
Collision covers damage to your car, regardless of fault, and pays out up to the actual cash value of your car if it is found to be a total loss after an auto accident. Furthermore, collision coverage doesn’t cover weather events, theft or if you hit an animal while driving.
Comprehensive covers theft and damage to your car from hail, floods, fire, vandalism and animal strikes. Like collision coverage, this will pay you up to the amount your car is valued at the moment before the incident.
Loretta Worters, vice president, of the Insurance Information Institute, says that beyond just liability or comprehensive car insurance, consumers should consider getting an umbrella policy, which is extra insurance, covering extraneous items.
“Umbrella insurance can provide coverage for injuries, property damage, certain lawsuits and personal liability situations. In most cases, personal umbrella policies are available in million-dollar increments, from $1 million to $5 million,” Worters says.
John YoswickAnalyst for CRASH Network
John Yoswick is an analyst for CRASH Network, a trade publication covering the collision repair and auto insurance industries. He says that while today’s vehicles come with more safety features, this often increases the cost of repairing the damage from an accident.
“The increasing prevalence of driver assistance systems (like auto-emergency braking, lane-keeping systems, blind-spot detection) in new vehicles is reducing the number of accidents/claims, but contributing to the higher cost of repairs when crashes do occur,” he says.
CarInsurance.com’s Car Insurance Estimator tool relies on 2022 data from Quadrant Information Services of average auto insurance rates for nearly every ZIP code in the United States with rates using a 2022 Honda Accord and data from 10 large carriers.
Averages for customized rates are based on drivers’ ages and gender for the following coverage levels: state minimum liability, liability of 50/100/50 and 100/300/100 with a $500 deductible on comprehensive and collision. Hypothetical drivers have good driving records and good credit.
– Michelle Megna contributed to this story.