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Comparing multiple car insurance quotes is the best way to get cheaper insurance. We’ll help you understand the importance of comparing quotes, how to compare them, and the factors that affect your premiums.
- Car insurance rates can vary wildly from company to company, which means the best way to save money is to get quotes from multiple insurance companies.
- Factors such as your age and gender, driving history, the kind of car you drive, and where you live all play big roles in how much you’ll pay for car insurance.
- Using insurance comparison sites (like Compare.com) is the best way to quickly and easily compare quotes from multiple insurance companies simultaneously.
Why It’s Important to Compare Car Insurance Quotes
Prices of consumer goods have been on the rise since the pandemic, and while inflation has begun to slow in 2023, the cost of auto insurance continues to skyrocket. In fact, auto insurance rates have risen by nearly 20% since 2022, according to research from Insurify.
But that doesn’t mean you’re stuck with ever-increasing rates. Some insurers are raising premiums at a faster rate than their competitors, while others are better suited to withstand the rising automobile prices and repair costs that have caused the recent spike in insurance prices.
Either way, the single best way to get cheaper car insurance is to compare quotes from as many companies as possible.
“It’s very important for consumers to compare auto insurance quotes because it’s the easiest way to find better deals and less expensive premiums,” says Michael DeLong, research and advocacy associate at the Consumer Federation of America. “Competition drives our economic system; comparing rates allows consumers to see all the best insurance premium options available.”
We compared average quotes from dozens of car insurance companies for different driving profiles and rating factors to show you how much you could save.
Compare the Best Quotes from Dozens of Companies
Compare the Cheapest Quotes from the 10 Largest Car Insurance Companies
Our analysis indicates that Erie, GEICO, State Farm, and American Family are the cheapest car insurance companies for liability-only and full-coverage car insurance. These insurers average less than $100 per month for liability-only and $200 for full-coverage auto insurance.
The table below compares car insurance quotes for the country’s 10 largest auto insurance companies by market share.
Rates can vary dramatically among different companies because each weighs rating factors differently. “Auto insurers use driving, non-driving, and socioeconomic factors to determine your premiums,” DeLong says. These factors include your driving record, age, marital status, credit score, ZIP code, occupation, education level, and homeownership status.
Compare the Cheapest Quotes from 10 Smaller Insurers
Just because an insurance company is large and advertises significant savings doesn’t mean it will be the cheapest option for you. When you compare car insurance quotes, don’t be afraid to check out lesser-known insurance companies.
We compared 10 smaller regional insurers with the cheapest average quotes in the table below, sorted by the cheapest liability policies.
|Company||Liability Only||Full Coverage|
|General Casualty Insurance||$48||$114|
We found Hastings Mutual, Wawanesa, and Plymouth Rock have some of the best quotes among well-known regional insurers. But keep in mind that these are all smaller companies, so their rates are largely influenced by the average rates of the states they operate in.
How to Compare Car Insurance Quotes Online
Comparing car insurance quotes online can be quick and easy if you know how to do it. You can get free car insurance quotes online and, using these tips, find the best coverage from the most affordable company for your unique needs.
1. Determine your budget
Before you start comparing quotes, you need to determine your budget, the type of insurance you need, and how much coverage you require. By doing this as your first step, you can quickly weed out overpriced insurance companies and focus on the insurers with the lowest prices.
2. Gather the relevant information
Make sure you have the right information available, like your:
- Date of birth
- Social Security number
- Driver’s license number
- Vehicle identification number (VIN)
- Current coverage details
3. Use an insurance-comparison website
Insurance-comparison websites like Compare.com make comparing quotes faster and easier because you only have to input your information once. Plus, you can compare prices and coverage options from different companies at the same time.
4. Research companies with the best quotes
The largest insurance companies won’t always have the best price for your specific needs. Do your research before committing to an insurer. Third-party websites analyze insurance companies based on customer feedback and experience on things like website and mobile performance, shopping experience, the claims process, and financial strength:
- D. Power studies
- M. Best
- National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) complaint index
5. Select the best quote for you
After researching, you should have narrowed down your list to a few insurance companies. It’s time to choose which company best meets your coverage needs and budget. Review your auto insurance quotes again and select the best quote for you. Then, complete the application for your new policy.
6. Compare quotes again at renewal
When your policy comes up for renewal, you’ll typically get a renewal notice about 30 days before your renewal date. Take some time to compare car insurance quotes again to see if your current insurer is still the best deal. You won’t know if you could find lower rates or get a better deal if you don’t get new quotes.
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Compare Car Insurance Rates by State
The state you live in is one of the biggest factors affecting your car insurance rates. Insurance regulations are on a state level, so laws, coverage requirements, and minimum limits differ from state to state. These variables also affect the average cost of auto insurance in each state.
The table below shows the overall average quote in each state in the U.S.
On average, Vermont, Wyoming, Iowa, Maine, Hawaii, and Alaska are among the cheapest states for car insurance. New York, New Jersey, and Louisiana have the most expensive average auto insurance costs. Accident frequency, uninsured motorists, vehicle repair costs, and claim severity are a few factors that determine state rate variations, according to the Insurance Research Council.
Compare Car Insurance Rates by Vehicle
Your vehicle’s make, model, and type also play a role in determining your insurance premiums. In the table below, you’ll find average monthly quotes for some of the most common body types of the best-selling vehicles in 2022, according to Car and Driver.
|Vehicle||Body Type||Monthly Rate|
|Toyota RAV4||Crossover SUV||$146|
|Jeep Grand Cherokee||Full-size SUV||$165|
|Toyota Tacoma||Midsize truck||$152|
|Ford F-150||Full-size truck||$150|
|Tesla Model Y||Electric SUV||$181|
We found that the cheapest average rates are for crossover SUVs, full-size trucks, and midsize trucks, ranging from $146 to $152 monthly. Although insurance for the Toyota RAV4 averages just $146 per month, the smaller Toyota Camry’s average monthly rate is the second-highest, at $179 monthly. The Tesla Model Y, an electric SUV, is the most expensive, costing an average of $181 monthly to insure.
Don’t see your model or body type listed? We gathered rates for various vehicle brands, including cars, trucks, and SUVs, to help you find the best vehicle that fits your needs and budget.
Find the Best Rate for Your Vehicle
Compare Car Insurance Quotes by Other Top Factors
Insurance companies use many factors to determine car insurance rates. Below, we highlight several with the greatest impact, like age, driving record, relationship status, and credit score.
With age come maturity and smarter driving decisions, which typically translates to lower car insurance premiums. Teens usually pay the most, while drivers 40 and older usually pay the least for auto insurance.
|18 years old||$297||$676|
|25 years old||$109||$266|
|40 years old||$97||$232|
|65 years old||$97||$221|
Young drivers will almost always pay the highest rates because they generally make riskier driving decisions, making them more likely to get tickets and cause accidents. But if you maintain a clean driving record, your rates should decrease considerably once you turn 25. The average rate for liability insurance for an 18-year-old is $297 monthly, while a 25-year-old pays an average of $109. Rates are fairly level from 40 on but can start to climb again as drivers reach an age when vision or mobility challenges may affect their driving.
Your driving record will also affect your auto insurance rates. Drivers without tickets, convictions, or at-fault accidents get the best pricing. In contrast, drivers with infractions are riskier to insure, paying more for the same coverage. The table below shows overall average car insurance quotes for drivers with a clean record and those with different infractions.
|Driving Record||Liability-Only||Full Coverage|
After a speeding ticket, drivers pay an average of $51 more monthly for full coverage than a driver with a clean record. The increase is even higher after causing an accident, averaging $92 more monthly. And if you get a DUI — the most severe infraction — you’ll pay an average of $196 more. While it might not seem like it, a great time to shop around and compare car insurance rates is after a conviction or accident.
Whether you’re married or single has an impact on your auto insurance rates. Married drivers tend to pay less for car insurance than single drivers, as shown in the table below.
|Marital Status||Liability-Only||Full Coverage|
When comparing auto insurance quotes, we found that single drivers spend an average of $57 more per month for liability coverage than married drivers. The difference is even higher with full coverage, where single drivers pay an average of $126 more.
Lenders and employers aren’t the only ones interested in your credit score; some insurance companies also use your score to determine premiums. The better your credit score, the less you’ll likely pay for car insurance, as shown in the below table.
|Credit Score||Liability-Only||Full Coverage|
Drivers with a good credit history pay an average of $17–$41 higher monthly premiums than drivers with excellent credit. If you have poor credit, your monthly rates could be $98–$232 more. Not all insurers use credit as a rating factor, and some states ban or restrict its usage. Check your state to determine the rules for credit scores and which companies might not use it as a rating factor.
How to Get Cheaper Car Insurance
When it comes to getting cheaper car insurance, you may have more options than you think. Here are some of the best ways to save money on your monthly bill.
- Take advantage of discounts: Most insurance companies offer a wide array of discounts to customers. You could save some serious money for things like driving a safe car, getting good grades, taking a driver improvement course, and more.
- Bundle your insurance policies: One of the best ways to save on car insurance is to purchase multiple insurance policies from the same company. For example, combining your home and auto insurance can save you as much as 30% on your monthly bill.
- Compare quotes from multiple companies: The best way to get cheaper insurance is to get quotes from several companies. After all, the U.S. has hundreds of insurance companies to choose from, so the only way to determine which has the best rates for your unique profile is to get quotes from as many as you can. Luckily, car insurance comparison sites give you the tools to compare multiple quotes side by side, making the whole process quicker and easier.
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Factors to Consider When Comparing Car Insurance Quotes
Although price is an important factor, it’s not the only one to consider when comparing auto insurance quotes. Your coverage choices and the insurance company should also factor into your decision.
You have multiple coverage options to choose from, including the ones listed below.
- Liability coverage: Included in every auto insurance policy, this coverage pays for the other party’s injuries and property damage in a covered accident.
- Collision coverage: If you cause an accident, collision coverage pays for damage to your own vehicle.
- Comprehensive coverage: This pays for damage to your own vehicle from “non-collision events,” such as weather, vandalism, or theft.
- Full coverage: Purchasing comprehensive and collision coverages on top of basic liability insurance gives you a “full-coverage” policy. This way, you’re covered if your vehicle gets damaged.
You can also consider optional coverages, like those mentioned below.
- Uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage provides added protection if you’re hit by a driver who doesn’t have enough insurance to cover your damages.
- Medical payments (MedPay) and personal injury protection (PIP) cover your medical bills, regardless of fault.
- Roadside assistance pays for towing and labor costs if you’re stranded with a flat tire or dead battery, among other problems.
- Gap insurance pays for the difference between your loan balance and your car’s actual cash value if totaled.
- Rental car reimbursement covers rental car costs while yours is in the shop during a claim.
- New car replacement pays for a brand-new vehicle if your new car is totaled in an accident.
Your policy limits are the most the insurance company will pay per covered loss. Suppose you have 25/50 bodily injury liability. In that case, the most the company will pay is $25,000 per person and $50,000 per bodily injury claim. Higher limits will require higher premiums because the insurance company might have to pay more for each claim.
The deductible is the amount you pay if you file a comprehensive or collision claim. For instance, if your car receives $5,000 in hail damage and you have a $500 deductible, you’ll pay $500 to the body shop for repairs, and the insurance company will pay $4,500. Lower deductibles require higher rates because the insurance company pays more per claim.
Customer service and claims availability
You pay for customer service when you buy auto insurance, especially when going through the claims process. Before you commit to an insurance company, check their customer service and claims satisfaction. Companies like J.D. Power and the NAIC study insurance companies and use customer feedback to score them.
Compare Car Insurance FAQs
Doing your research can pay off when comparing car insurance. The following are answers to some common questions auto insurance shoppers have about comparing rates.
What do you need to compare car insurance quotes online?
To compare car insurance quotes online, you should have your personal information, vehicle type, VIN, and current policy details available. Being prepared will make the process faster and easier.
Why are your car insurance quotes so high?
Your quotes may be high for multiple reasons. It could be your age, driving record, vehicle type, or the insurance company. Comparing quotes could help you save.
When is the best time to compare car insurance quotes?
You can compare car insurance quotes at any time, including after getting a ticket or being involved in an accident. Depending on your insurer, when your policy renews may be the best time to compare; some insurance companies charge cancellation fees for terminating your policy before the renewal date.
What’s the best car insurance comparison site?
We’ve tried all the leading car insurance comparison sites and found that Compare.com and Insurify are the clear winners. Both sites have great customer reviews and provide the highest number of actual quotes.
How much should you be paying for car insurance?
We found the national average full-coverage auto insurance cost is $302 per month. How much you’ll pay for car insurance depends on factors like your age, driving history, where you live, and coverage choices.
How can you lower your car insurance cost?
You can lower your car insurance costs by checking for discounts and reviewing your coverage. Regularly comparing car insurance quotes can also help you get the lowest price.
Data scientists at Compare.com analyzed more than 50 million real-time auto insurance rates from more than 75 partner insurance providers in order to compile the quotes and statistics seen in this article. Compare.com’s auto insurance data includes coverage analysis and details on drivers’ vehicles, driving records, insurance histories, and demographic information. All of the quotes listed in this article have been gathered from a combination of real Compare.com quotes and external insurance rate data gathered in collaboration with Quadrant Information Services. Compare.com uses these observations to provide drivers with insight into how auto insurance companies determine their premiums.
- AM Best. “Company ratings.” Accessed Novemberr 30, 2023.
- Car and Driver. “The 25 Bestselling Cars, Trucks, and SUVs of 2022.” Accessed June 21, 2023.
- Insurance Research Council. “Auto Insurance Affordability: Countrywide Trends and State Comparisons.” Accessed November 30, 2023.
- J.D. Power. “Insurance Research Dates and Details.” Accessed June 20, 2023.
- Moody’s. “Property & Casualty – North America.” Accessed June 20, 2023.
- NAIC. “Consumer Insurance Search Results.” Accessed November 30, 2023.
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