AFR vs. Shelter: Which Company is the Best Fit for You?

Want to know if AFR or Shelter is the better choice for auto insurance? You're probably wondering which company offers the best rates or the most discounts. Check out our latest guide below to find out which of these two companies is the best for you.
Newly insured car driving down the road
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Quick Facts

  • Based on national averages for insurance, AFR offers significantly cheaper premiums than Shelter
  • AFR has less expensive prices for drivers who have an at-fault accident on their record
  • Shelter offers more discounts than AFR Insurance

AFR vs. Shelter: Which Company has the Cheapest Car Insurance?

So, you're thinking about switching your auto insurance. With so many ads from all sorts of companies offering hefty discounts, you're probably wondering exactly how much you might be able to save.

You might have narrowed it down to AFR or Shelter as your top options, but which company has more affordable rates for car insurance?

AFR Shelter

Looking at the national average rates for both companies, AFR is quite a bit cheaper than Shelter, with premiums averaging $137 per month compared to $208 with Shelter.

Even so, that doesn't mean AFR will necessarily be less expensive than Shelter for every driver. After all, auto insurance carriers can offer drastically different rates to each driver depending on rating factors like your age, where you call home, your driving record, or even your credit score (among other things), so prices could differ drastically from person to person.

So, if you want to find out which of AFR or Shelter is really the best for you, keep reading to see average rates for each carrier broken down by multiple different rate factors.

AFR or Shelter: Average Car Insurance Rates by State

State AFR Shelter

AFR and Shelter only compete against each other in Oklahoma, where AFR offers the cheaper average premiums. For Oklahoma residents, undefined offers insurance for undefined per month on average. undefined's average prices come out to be more expensive, at undefined a month.

That being said, there's a lot more that goes into your auto insurance bill than just your home state. Keep reading to learn more.

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Which is the Best Company For Young Drivers?

AFR Shelter
18-year-old drivers$195$444
25-year-old drivers$135$197

Young drivers -- especially teens -- normally pay a lot for insurance compared to older drivers. That's because young, inexperienced drivers are statistically much more likely to get into accidents since they have less experience on the roads.

But still, even with seemingly sky-high premiums, teen drivers can still find ways to save money. Just look at the table above -- where 18-year-old drivers who have AFR for their car insurance pay nearly $250 less than those who use Shelter.

However, both companies will offer you dramatically lower prices by the time you turn 25. For example, average rates for AFR policyholders decrease more than 30% and Shelter's prices drop over 55% over that time.

Which is the Best Company for Retired Drivers?

AFR Shelter
65+-year-old drivers$124$141

Drivers around retirement age usually enjoy some of the cheapest insurance rates out there. After all, they've likely been driving for quite some time, which generally lowers their chances of accidents and other infractions that can increase premiums.

So, which company offers the best rates to retired drivers? AFR gets the edge, with prices for drivers 65 and older more than 10% cheaper than the national average for Shelter.

Which is the Best Company for Married Drivers?

AFR Shelter

Did you know that car insurance premiums are typically more expensive for single policyholders than they are for married couples? That's because policies for married policyholders generally cover several cars, which quite a few carriers will offer you a discount for.

When it comes to relationship status, AFR is the clear winner for single drivers, with rates about $96 a month more affordable than Shelter, on average. The advantage for married drivers with AFR is also obvious, where drivers save almost 25% per month.

AFR vs. Shelter: Average Rates by Gender

AFR Shelter

Did you know women normally pay less for auto insurance than men? This is because men are statistically more likely than women to get pulled over for speeding or get into an accident, which leads to increased risk for insurers and, therefore, higher prices.

On average, women see premiums around 3% a month less with AFR, while with Shelter, the difference is closer to 11% per month.

When it comes to the lowest prices for each gender, AFR comes out on top for both men and women, with average rates 37% less for men and 31% cheaper for women.

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AFR or Shelter: Compare State Minimum vs. Full Coverage Rates

AFR Shelter
State Minimum*$65$129
Full Coverage**$209$288

*State minimum value indicates liability-only policies at each state's minimum bodily injury and property damage (BI/PD) limits

**Full coverage indicates state minimum BI/PD limits with collision and comprehensive coverages added to policy.

For most people, car insurance can be pretty complicated. There are so many different coverages and terms that it can make it pretty confusing to find the right policy.

That being said, the most common policies that many drivers look at fall into two categories -- liability only (which provides bodily injury and property damage coverage for other drivers and passengers if you cause a collision) and full coverage (which includes comprehensive and collision coverages that protect your own vehicle, in addition to what you get with liability).

If you're looking for state minimum liability limits, AFR typically offers significantly cheaper premiums of $65 compared to Shelter's $129. When it comes to full coverage policies with similar limits, AFR again has the edge, with policies about $80 a month more affordable than Shelter, on average.

Is AFR or Shelter Better for Drivers with Spotty Records?

It's no big secret that drivers who are accident-free get better deals on their insurance. But even if you have a spotty record, you can still find plenty of ways to save some cash on your monthly bill.

Tickets and at-fault collisions will most likely raise your rates, but is AFR or Shelter less expensive for drivers with less-than-perfect records?

Which Company is Best for Drivers with Speeding Tickets?

AFR Shelter
Clean Record$98$142
1 Speeding Ticket$133$181

AFR policyholders can expect their premiums to go up an average of $35 per month if they get a ticket, while Shelter usually raises prices around $39 a month, on average.

But AFR is typically the more affordable option for both drivers who have clean records and those with a recent speeding ticket. Drivers with a clean record can save about $44 per month and drivers with a ticket can save around $48 a month with AFR Insurance.

Which Company is Best for Drivers After an Accident?

AFR Shelter
Clean Record$98$142
1 At-Fault Accident$98$234

AFR drivers who get in an accident can expect to see their premiums increase by $0, while those who have insurance through Shelter will see about a $90 increase.

Overall, the less expensive prices come from AFR, with monthly rates averaging $98 compared to Shelter Insurance's $234.

Which Company is Best for Drivers with a DUI?

AFR Shelter
Clean Record$98$142
1 DUI$220$277

On average, a DUI offense is going to cost you much more than a single collision or speeding ticket when it comes to your auto insurance bill. Shelter drivers usually see a 49% climb in their car insurance prices after a DUI charge, while AFR will generally increase rates by around 55%.

If you have a DUI on your record and are looking for more affordable premiums, AFR tends to be the much cheaper option with average rates of $220 monthly compared to $277 from Shelter.

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How does Credit Score Impact AFR and Shelter Rates?

Did you know that many insurance companies take your credit score into account when calculating premiums? Certain states and carriers do not allow for credit score to be used as a rating factor, but it might come into play for lots of policyholders.

The reasoning auto insurance companies use is that drivers with good credit will be more likely to pay their bills on time; so they'll reward them with cheaper prices, while those with poor credit will normally be forced to pay more.

So, which carrier offers the most affordable rates for policyholders with poor, average, or good credit?

Which Company is Best for Drivers with Good Credit?

AFR Shelter
Excellent Credit Score$98$164
Good Credit Score$120$187

Which Company is Best for Drivers with Bad Credit?

AFR Shelter
Fair Credit Score$143$221
Poor Credit Score$188$261

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Is AFR or Shelter Better for Drivers who Work from Home or Have Short Commutes?

AFR Shelter
6,000 Annual Miles$137$203
12,000 Annual Miles$137$214

How much you drive can have a considerable impact on your monthly insurance payment. Usually, the more miles you drive, the more you can expect to pay for coverage.

As you can see in the table above, annual mileage doesn't have much of an impact on how much AFR charges. However, there's a small difference in monthly premiums for Shelter, with drivers who put 6,000 miles on their car every year paying about $11 less each month compared to those who drive 12,000 miles yearly. Still, AFR is the less expensive option for drivers in both categories.

AFR vs. Shelter: Compare Rates for Urban, Suburban, and Rural Drivers

Where your home is can have a pretty big impact on your monthly car insurance cost. Typically, those who live in urban areas will pay more than drivers in rural areas due to the number of vehicles that are on the roads in those areas.

AFR Shelter
Urban Areas$163$235
Suburban Areas$139$187
Rural Areas$109$203

When comparing these two carriers side-by-side, AFR generally comes out as the lowest option for drivers in every type of area, no matter if it's urban, suburban, or rural.

If you live in a rural area, you can expect to pay around $109 per month with AFR and $203 with Shelter. Drivers in suburban ZIP codes pay a monthly rate of about $139 with AFR compared to $187 with Shelter. In urban areas, AFR's average prices are around $163 while Shelter offers rates about $235.

AFR vs. Shelter Discounts

Regardless of why you might be in the market for a new auto insurance policy, you're always going to want to save as much money as possible. That's where car insurance discounts comes into play.

But with what seems like a million different discounts out there, it can be hard to nail down the company that has the most discounts for your unique driver profile and to find all the discounts you can take advantage of.

Below, we've compared all of the different discounts offered by AFR and Shelter so that you can easily see which company offers the most discounts and, therefore, the biggest savings.

AFR Shelter
Advance Quote Discount 
Anti-Theft Discount 
Defensive Driver Discount
Driver Training Discount
Good Driving Discount
Good Payer Discount 
Good Student Discount
Multi-Car Discount
Multi-Policy Discount
New Business Discount 
Paid In Full Discount
Passive Restraint Discount 

Overall, Shelter has a slight advantage when it comes to total number of discounts. AFR offers a grand total of nine discounts, while Shelter has 10.

Both companies offer lots of the same discounts -- like discounts for getting driver training, discounts for being a good student, and discounts for insuring multiple cars with the same company -- but Shelter also offers advance quote discounts, anti-theft discounts, and passive restraint discounts that AFR does not.

On the flip side, AFR has a couple unique discounts of its own -- good payer discounts and new business discounts.

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Final Thoughts: Is AFR or Shelter Best for You?

You've seen the effect certain factors have on your auto insurance and the different discounts carriers offer. But, at the end of the day, which carrier is the best carrier for you and your specific profile and needs?

AFR might be best for you if....

  • You've been pulled over for speeding recently.
  • Your neighborhood is in the suburbs.
  • You have a short commute.

Shelter might be best for you if...

  • You care about discounts (Shelter offers the most).

We hope this guide has ben a valuable resource as you compare AFR and Shelter. We also hope we've given you the information you need to make the best decision when it comes to your insurance.

At the end of the day, the best way to make sure you're getting the best deal on your auto insurance policy is to compare quotes from a handful of companies, not just AFR and Shelter. Luckily, makes it easy for you to do just that. Just enter your ZIP code below and get free quotes from dozens of top insurance carriers in your area, all in just a few minutes.

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AFR vs. Shelter FAQs

Is AFR or Shelter cheaper?

Looking just at the national average premiums, AFR is the cheaper of the two companies, offering average rates of $137 per month compared to $208 for Shelter. That being said, AFR won't necessarily be the most affordable company for every driver, since there are a range of different variables (things like driving record, age, gender, etc.) that play a role in how much you pay.

Who is better, AFR or Shelter?

Sadly, the answer truly is "it depends.". No single carrier is necessarily "better" for each driver -- it all boils down to your unique car insurance profile.

Why do AFR and Shelter offer me different rates?

Insurance carriers take a look at many different factors when determining the prices they charge policyholders. Things such as age, gender, your driving record, where you live, and sometimes even things like your credit score can all come into play. Both AFR and Shelter calculate premiums differently, so each one will most likely offer different prices. The only real way to see which company is the cheapest for you is by comparing personalized quotes from a variety of different companies.

How do I know if AFR or Shelter is right for me?

The only way to find the car insurance carrier that's right for you is by getting quotes from several carriers and finding the one best suited for your individual budget. Luckily, sites like do all the hard work for you. Just enter your information once and you'll get free quotes from dozens of the best auto insurance companies in your area. With those, you can guarantee you're getting the most affordable price. And who knows, the best company for you might not be AFR or Shelter at all!


All of the data referenced in this article has been gathered in collaboration with Quadrant Information Services. We analyzed more than 2.5 million rows of carrier-reported data to calculate the average rates referenced above. All rates are based on an insurance profile of a single-vehicle policy for a driver that owns a 2016 Honda Accord. For more information on how we calculate rates, please reference our data methodology.

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