Auto-owners vs. The General: Which Company is the Best Fit for You?

So, you're in the market for a new insurance policy. You may have even narrowed down your search to Auto-owners and The General. But which of these two companies is the best one for you? Read on to find which carrier has the best rates and biggest discounts.
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Quick Facts

  • Looking at the national averages for auto insurance, Auto-owners offers significantly less expensive prices than The General
  • Auto-owners tends to be a much cheaper option for single people who will be the only person on the car insurance policy
  • The General has more affordable premiums for drivers with a DUI

Auto-owners or The General: Which Company has the Cheapest Car Insurance?

Are you considering a new insurance policy? After all, you've seen ads from all sorts of companies offering substantial savings. But exactly how much can you save by switching?

You've maybe even narrowed your search down to Auto-owners or The General as potential options, but which carrier has cheaper prices for insurance?

Auto-owners The General

Looking at nationwide averages, Auto-owners has average rates that are around 25% a month more affordable than those from The General.

But that doesn't mean Auto-owners will necessarily be less expensive than The General for every driver. Auto insurance carriers vary their rates depending on things like where you live, how clean your driving record is, how good your credit score is, how old you are, and a variety of other factors, so premiums could change drastically from person to person.

So, if you want to find out which of Auto-owners or The General is really the best for you, keep reading to see average rates for each company broken down by lots of different rate factors.

Auto-owners vs. The General: Average Car Insurance Rates by State

State Auto-owners The General

Auto-owners and The General only compete against each other in three states, with Auto-owners offering more affordable premiums to the average driver in all of them. If you live in Utah, The General is the cheaper of the two companies when looking at the overall average prices. Auto-owners is the less expensive option in Arizona and Missouri.

There are plenty of other factors that go into your insurance bill than just where you live. Continue reading to see how other variables will affect your rates.

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Which is the Best Company For Young Drivers?

Auto-owners The General
18-year-old drivers$393$446
25-year-old drivers$164$244

Teen drivers will almost always have the most expensive car insurance premiums of any other group of drivers out there on the road. That's because teen 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 rates, teen drivers can still find ways to save money. As you can see above, teens who use Auto-owners save almost 10% per month compared to those who use The General. It's worth noting that Auto-owners offers auto insurance in 23 different states compared to The General's three, which can skew the average prices a bit, but the difference here is still considerable.

That being said, with both carriers, you'll see your premiums lower significantly by the time drivers turn 25. For example, average prices for Auto-owners policyholders decrease nearly 60% and The General's rates reduce over 45% over that time.

Which is the Best Company for Retired Drivers?

Auto-owners The General
65+-year-old drivers$133$195

Drivers around retirement age typically enjoy some of the cheapest car insurance premiums you'll ever see. After all, they've likely been driving for quite some time, which usually reduces their chances of collisions and other infractions that can raise prices.

When looking at Auto-owners and The General specifically, which carrier is best for retired drivers? Auto-owners gets the edge, with rates for drivers 65 and older $62 more affordable than the national average for The General.

Which is the Best Company for Married Drivers?

Auto-owners The General

You may not be aware, but auto insurance prices tend to be less expensive for married policyholders than they are for single drivers. That's normally because married drivers tend to own and insure multiple vehicles, which can often earn you a discount.

For single policyholders, the difference in average rates between these two companies is significant, with Auto-owners premiums coming in at a quarter less than The General's. For married couples, the advantage is clear again - Auto-owners has the edge when it comes to average rates.

Auto-owners or The General: Average Rates by Gender

Auto-owners The General

Did you know men tend to pay more for insurance than women? That's because men are more likely to get into collisions and get speeding tickets, which increases the chances of filing a claim with insurance.

With Auto-owners, men generally pay about $10 a month more than women, but with The General, the difference is closer to $32 per month.

Looking at overall affordability, Auto-owners comes out on top for both men and women, with average prices 28% less for men and 23% cheaper for women.

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Auto-owners vs. The General: Compare State Minimum vs. Full Coverage Rates

Auto-owners The General
State Minimum*$99$154
Full Coverage**$260$329

*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, auto insurance can be pretty complicated. There are so many different terms and coverages that it can make it pretty confusing to find the right policy for you.

The two most common policies end up falling into two different types of coverage -- liability coverage (which covers the other party's property damage and injuries if you cause a collision) and full coverage (which typically refers to having collision and comprehensive coverages alongside liability coverage).

Looking specifically at state minimum liability limits, Auto-owners has the significant edge, with average monthly premiums coming in at $99. If you want a full coverage policy with the same state minimum limits, Auto-owners again has the edge, with policies averaging around $260 a month to The General's $329.

Is Auto-owners or The General Better for Drivers with Spotty Records?

It's no secret -- drivers with good records end up getting the best deals on their car insurance. But that's not to say you can't save money if you don't have the best driving record, either.

You'll probably end up paying more with speeding tickets and accidents on your record, but which of these two carriers offers the most affordable rates to drivers with spotty records?

Which Company is Best for Drivers with Speeding Tickets?

Auto-owners The General
Clean Record$121$192
1 Speeding Ticket$165$240

Policyholders who use Auto-owners for their insurance can normally expect their monthly bill to go up about 27% after getting a speeding ticket. The General policyholders can expect a less drastic increase of around 20%.

However, Auto-owners is generally the cheaper option for drivers both with a ticket and with a clean record, offering prices that are 37% and 31% more affordable, respectively, compared to The General.

Which Company is Best for Drivers After an Accident?

Auto-owners The General
Clean Record$121$192
1 At-Fault Accident$168$279

Auto-owners drivers who get in an accident can expect to see their premiums rise by over $45, while those who have insurance through The General will see about a $85 increase.

At the end of the day, Auto-owners offers the lowest rates for drivers with an at-fault collision on their records, with average prices coming in at $168 compared to The General's $279.

Which Company is Best for Drivers with a DUI?

Auto-owners The General
Clean Record$121$192
1 DUI$264$254

On average, a DUI offense is going to cost you much more than a single accident or speeding ticket when it comes to your auto insurance bill. Auto-owners drivers usually see a 54% increase in their insurance premiums after a DUI charge, while The General will usually climb prices by around 24%.

The General has the overall cheapest rates for drivers with a DUI on their records at $254 monthly, but it's worth noting that Auto-owners's average rates come from 23 states compared to just three for The General, so the data may be skewed slightly.

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How does Credit Score Impact Auto-owners and The General Rates?

Did you know many car insurance companies take your credit score into account when determining premiums? This isn't true for everyone (for example, California and Massachusetts are two states that ban the practice entirely), but it might come into play for several policyholders.

The reasoning auto insurance carriers use is that drivers with bad credit will be less likely to pay their bills on time; so generally, they'll be asked to pay more, while those with good credit will be rewarded with less expensive rates.

Looking at Auto-owners and The General specifically, which one has the best premiums for policyholders at different credit levels?

Which Company is Best for Drivers with Good Credit?

Auto-owners The General
Excellent Credit Score$95$176
Good Credit Score$129$217

If you have a great credit score, Auto-owners will normally reward you the most. For drivers with "excellent" credit scores, Auto-owners comes in more than 46.02 cheaper. Drivers with "good" credit scores usually save about 41% with Auto-owners compared to average prices from The General.

Which Company is Best for Drivers with Bad Credit?

Auto-owners The General
Fair Credit Score$176$246
Poor Credit Score$317$325

Auto-owners typically offers lower premiums than The General when it comes to drivers with bad credit. Drivers with "fair" credit pay around 28% per month less with Auto-owners compared to The General, and those with "poor" scores typically save an average of about 2% per month.

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Is Auto-owners or The General Better for Drivers who Work from Home or Have Short Commutes?

Auto-owners The General
6,000 Annual Miles$179$241
12,000 Annual Miles$180$241

How much you drive can have a large impact on your monthly insurance cost. Generally, those who drive fewer miles will end up with less expensive rates since there's less of a chance of causing a collision and filing an insurance claim.

As you can see in the table above, annual mileage doesn't have much of an impact on how much The General charges. However, there's a small difference in monthly prices for Auto-owners, with drivers who put 6,000 miles on their car every year paying around $1 less each month compared to those who drive 12,000 miles yearly. Still, for drivers in both categories, Auto-owners is the cheaper company.

Auto-owners or The General: Compare Rates for Urban, Suburban, and Rural Drivers

Where your home is can have a considerable impact on your monthly car insurance payment. Usually, those who live in urban areas will pay more than policyholders in rural areas because of the number of vehicles that are on the roads where they live.

Auto-owners The General
Urban Areas$205$310
Suburban Areas$169$225
Rural Areas$164$189

When comparing these two companies side-by-side, Auto-owners typically 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 about $164 a month with Auto-owners compared to The General's $189. People in suburban areas pay around $169 with Auto-owners compared to The General's $225 per month. In urban areas, Auto-owners's average rates are about $205 a month compared to The General's $310.

Auto-owners vs. The General Discounts

No matter why you might be in the market for a new insurance policy, you're always going to want to save as much money as you can. That's where car insurance discounts comes into play.

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

Luckily, we did the hard work for you and looked at all of the different discounts Auto-owners and The General offer their customers so that you can find the company that has the most discounts and, therefore, the largest savings.

Auto-owners The General
ABS Discount 
Advance Quote Discount 
Anti-Theft Discount 
Company Car Discount 
Covid-19 Relief Discount 
Defensive Driver Discount
Distant Student Discount 
Driver Training Discount 
Education Discount 
Good Driving Discount 
Good Student Discount 
Group Discount
Homeowner Discount
Inside Storage Discount 
Liability Only Discount 
Life Policy Discount 
Low Mileage Discount 
Minor Child Discount 
Multi-Car Discount 
Multi-Policy Discount 

Auto-owners knocks The General out of the park when it comes to the sheer number of discounts available, offering 24 different discounts to The General's six.

A couple of those are overlapping for things like discounts for being a defensive driver, discounts for being a homeowner, and paid in full discounts. Auto-owners also offers discounts for ABS, advance quote, anti-theft, and more.

On the other hand, The General has a few proprietary discounts of their own like liability only discounts and star level discounts.

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Final Thoughts: Is Auto-owners or The General Best for You?

You've seen the effect certain factors have on your auto insurance and the different discounts carriers offer. But, when it comes down to it, which carrier is the right carrier for you, your vehicle, and your wallet?

Auto-owners might be best for you if....

  • You value the experience that comes with a large national car insurance company.
  • You already have a great credit score.
  • You don't spend much time in your car.

The General might be best for you if...

  • You like the personalized touch of a small, regional carrier.
  • Your driving record includes a DUI charge.

Hopefully, this guide helps you get a good idea of the differences between Auto-owners and The General and that you can now make a more informed decision when it comes to your insurance.

At the end of the day, the sure-fire way to make sure you're getting the best deal on your auto insurance policy is to compare quotes from multiple companies, not just Auto-owners and The General. Luckily, makes it easy for you to do just that. Just enter your ZIP code below and get multiple free quotes from some of the best car insurance carriers in your area, all in just a few minutes.

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Auto-owners vs. The General FAQs

Is Auto-owners or The General cheaper?

Auto-owners is the more affordable of the two companies when looking at national average premiums, with policies averaging $179 per month with Auto-owners and $241 for The General. Even so, that doesn't mean Auto-owners will be the cheapest company for everyone, since there are multiple different variables (things like age, driving record, gender, etc.) that play a role in how much you pay.

Who is better, Auto-owners or The General?

Sadly, the only answer we can give you is "it depends.". Neither carrier is "better" for every policyholder -- it all comes down to what your unique insurance profile looks like. For example, Auto-owners is cheaper for drivers with excellent credit, while The General offers less expensive prices for drivers with a recent DUI.

Why do Auto-owners and The General offer me different rates?

Auto insurance carriers use a lot of different factors when calculating the rates they charge. Things such as your driving record, where you call home, age, gender, and sometimes even things like your credit score can all be taken into consideration. Both Auto-owners and The General calculate prices differently, so it's likely they'll offer different rates. The best way to determine which company is the most affordable for you is by comparing personalized quotes from a bunch of different companies.

How do I know if Auto-owners or The General is right for me?

The only way to find the car insurance carrier that's right for you is by getting quotes from a handful of carriers and finding the one best suited for your individual budget. Luckily, sites like make it easy for you to do just that. Just enter your area information and you'll get quotes from dozens of your local top insurance companies for free. That way, you can guarantee you're getting the lowest price. And maybe you'll find that the best company for you isn't Auto-owners or The General at all, but another you hadn't even thought of!


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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