Farmers vs. Great Northern: 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 Farmers and Great Northern. 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.
Newly insured car driving down the road
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Quick Facts

  • In general, Farmers offers significantly more affordable premiums than Great Northern
  • Farmers offers more affordable prices for residents of suburban areas
  • Great Northern has less expensive premiums in MI

Farmers or Great Northern: Which Company has the Cheapest Car Insurance?

So, you're thinking about switching to a new insurance policy. You've probably seen commercials and billboards from companies offering substantial savings, but exactly how much money can you save by switching?

You might have narrowed it down to Farmers or Great Northern as potential options, but which company will save you the most?

Farmers Great Northern

Looking at the national average rates for both carriers, Farmers has average rates that are around 60% a month cheaper than those from Great Northern.

Even so, that doesn't necessarily mean Farmers will be the less expensive option for every driver. Auto insurance companies vary their rates depending on things like where you live, how good your credit score is, how clean your driving record is, how old you are, and all sorts of other factors, so prices could vary drastically from person to person.

So, if you want to find out which of Farmers or Great Northern is really the best for you, keep reading to see average premiums for each company broken down by several different rate factors.

Farmers vs. Great Northern: Average Car Insurance Rates by State

State Farmers Great Northern

Farmers and Great Northern only compete against each other in Michigan, where Great Northern offers the cheaper average rates. Great Northern drivers tend to pay about $118 per month less on average compared to drivers who use Farmers for their car insurance.

But there's more to auto insurance than just the state you live in. As we mentioned above, there's a lot of things that go into how insurance carriers determine your prices. Read on to learn more.

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Which is the Best Company For Young Drivers?

Farmers Great Northern
18-year-old drivers$533$950
25-year-old drivers$155$486

Teen drivers will almost always have the most expensive auto insurance rates of any other group of drivers out there on the road. It's because teen drivers are statistically much more likely to cause collisions and other accidents that will result in an insurance claim.

But still, even with seemingly sky-high premiums, teen drivers can still find ways to save money. For example, 18-year-old drivers pay an average of over 45% less a month by choosing Farmers over Great Northern. It's worth noting that Farmers offers car insurance in 25 different states compared to Great Northern's one, which can skew the average prices a bit, but the difference here is still considerable.

But both companies will offer you dramatically lower rates by the time drivers turn 25. Great Northern offers the steepest reduction, with 25-year-olds paying less than half what 18-year-old drivers are charged. That being said, Farmers still has the cheapest prices at $155 monthly.

Which is the Best Company for Retired Drivers?

Farmers Great Northern
65+-year-old drivers$143$346

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

So, which carrier offers the best prices to retired drivers? Farmers gets the edge, with premiums for drivers 65 and older almost 60% cheaper than the national average for Great Northern.

Which is the Best Company for Married Drivers?

Farmers Great Northern

Did you know that auto insurance prices are typically more expensive for single policyholders than they are for married drivers? That's generally because married couples tend to own and insure more than one vehicle, which can often earn you a discount.

For single drivers, the difference in average rates between these two carriers is significant, with Farmers premiums coming in at about half of Great Northern's. The advantage is also clear for married policyholders - Farmers offers the most affordable average rates.

Farmers or Great Northern: Average Rates by Gender

Farmers Great Northern

Because women are less likely to get tickets and get into collisions, they run a lower risk of filing a claim with insurance. So, women usually pay less for car insurance than men.

With Farmers, men typically pay around $7 per month more than women; and with Great Northern, everyone ends up paying the same monthly premiums regardless of gender.

Looking at overall affordability, Farmers comes out on top for both men and women. On average, male drivers save about $289 a month and women save about $296 with Farmers compared to the average Great Northern policyholder.

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Farmers vs. Great Northern: Compare State Minimum vs. Full Coverage Rates

Farmers Great Northern
State Minimum*$126$255
Full Coverage**$281$737

*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.

Insurance isn't the easiest topic to understand. There are multiple different coverages that account for a range of different things. Some protect you and your car, while others only provide coverage for other people's property and health if you cause a collision.

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 an accident) and full coverage (which includes collision and comprehensive coverages that protect your own car, in addition to what you get with liability coverage).

Looking specifically at state minimum liability limits, Farmers has the significant edge, with average monthly prices coming in at $126. If you want a full coverage policy with the same state minimum limits, Farmers again has the edge, with policies averaging around $281 per month to Great Northern's $737.

Is Farmers or Great Northern 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.

It's no secret secret that speeding tickets and at-fault accidents lead to higher rates, but which company -- Farmers or Great Northern -- has the cheapest premiums for drivers with spotty records?

Which Company is Best for Drivers with Speeding Tickets?

Farmers Great Northern
Clean Record$162$496
1 Speeding Ticket$206$496

Policyholders with Great Northern auto insurance policies don't report seeing their prices increase after getting a ticket, but Farmers policyholders can expect to see their monthly bill increase by about a quarter.

That being said, Farmers tends to offer the best prices for both drivers who have a recent speeding ticket and those with clean records, offering premiums that are $334 and $290 more affordable, respectively, compared to Great Northern Insurance.

Which Company is Best for Drivers After an Accident?

Farmers Great Northern
Clean Record$162$496
1 At-Fault Accident$224$496

After an accident, drivers who have their insurance through Farmers can expect to see around an $62 -- or about 28% -- rise in their car insurance prices. Drivers who use Great Northern for their insurance will see a monthly bill around $0 (or 0%) more expensive after reporting a collision to their auto insurance carrier.

At the end of the day, drivers who use Farmers end up with the cheaper prices after an accident, with average rates coming in at $224 compared to Great Northern Insurance's $496.

Which Company is Best for Drivers with a DUI?

Farmers Great Northern
Clean Record$162$496
1 DUI$221$496

If you get a DUI charge, you can expect some pretty significant increases in your monthly car insurance bill -- normally a lot more than an accident or ticket. For example, Farmers increases average prices by nearly $60 a month -- that's more than a 25% increase.

Farmers has the overall most affordable rates for drivers with a DUI on their records at $221 per month, but it's worth noting that Farmers's average rates come from 25 states compared to just one for Great Northern, so the data may be skewed slightly.

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How does Credit Score Impact Farmers and Great Northern Rates?

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

Auto insurance companies argue that those with poor credit scores are less likely to pay their bills on time every month, which raises the risk involved on their end, while the opposite is true for those with good credit.

So, which company offers the lowest rates for policyholders with good, average, or poor credit?

Which Company is Best for Drivers with Good Credit?

Farmers Great Northern
Excellent Credit Score$164$76
Good Credit Score$185$99

Michigan is one of a just a few states that prohibits insurance carriers from using credit scores to calculate prices. And since Great Northern is only available in Michigan, there is no data available on how credit score impacts premiums because it's not a factor at all. This may be a good thing, since Farmers and other companies tend to increase rates quite a bit in other states if you don't have excellent credit.

Which Company is Best for Drivers with Bad Credit?

Farmers Great Northern
Fair Credit Score$209$118
Poor Credit Score$2561692

If you have less-than-perfect credit and live in Michigan, the good news is it won't cost you extra when it comes to car insurance. As you can see, poor credit can really cost Farmers drivers in other states, but no need to worry if you live in Michigan.

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Is Farmers or Great Northern Better for Drivers who Work from Home or Have Short Commutes?

Farmers Great Northern
6,000 Annual Miles$203$496
12,000 Annual Miles$203$496

How much you drive can have a pretty big impact on your monthly auto insurance cost. Generally, those who drive less will end up with cheaper premiums since there's less of a chance of causing a collision and filing an insurance claim.

In this case, neither Farmers or Great Northern report increasing prices for drivers with higher annual mileage figures. Even so, Farmers comes out as the cheapest for drivers at both intervals, whether they put 6,000 or 12,000 miles on their vehicle annually, with average premiums of $203 per month for both.

Farmers or Great Northern: Compare Rates for Urban, Suburban, and Rural Drivers

Where you call home can have a large impact on your monthly car insurance bill. Normally, if you live in an urban area with more cars on the road, you'll pay a little more for auto insurance, while the opposite is true for people in rural areas.

Farmers Great Northern
Urban Areas$251$570
Suburban Areas$189$486
Rural Areas$170$432

Farmers tends to offer the lowest premiums for drivers in every type of area, no matter if it's urban, suburban, or rural.

In urban areas, Farmers's average rates are about $251 while Great Northern offers prices around $570. Drivers in suburban ZIP codes pay about $189 with Farmers compared to Great Northern's $486 a month. If you live in a rural area, you can expect to pay around $170 per month with Farmers and $432 with Great Northern.

Farmers vs. Great Northern Discounts

You want to save as much money as you can, right? The best way to do that is by utilizing as many insurance discounts as possible.

But where do you even start? With so many discounts out there, it may seem hard to find all the of the ones you're eligible for.

Luckily, we did the hard work for you and looked at all of the different discounts Farmers and Great Northern offer their customers so that you can easily see which company offers the most discounts and, therefore, the largest savings.

Farmers Great Northern
ABS Discount
Advance Quote Discount 
Alternative Fuel Discount 
Anti-Theft Discount
Defensive Driver Discount
Distant Student Discount 
Driver Training Discount
EFT Discount 
ESC Discount 
Good Driving Discount 
Good Payer Discount 
Good Student Discount
Group Discount 
Homeowner Discount 
Life Policy Discount 
Loyalty Discount 
Mature Driver Discount 
Multi-Car Discount 
Multi-Policy Discount
Occasional Operator Discount 

Farmers knocks Great Northern out of the park when it comes to the sheer number of discounts available, offering 18 more discounts than Great Northern.

There are a couple discounts both carriers offer, but Farmers also offers discounts for advance quote, alternative fuel, distant student, and more.

On the other hand, Great Northern has a few proprietary discounts of their own for things like occasional operator discounts, renewal discounts, and vehicle ownership discounts.

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Final Thoughts: Is Farmers or Great Northern Best for You?

So, you've seen how different variables can affect your car insurance rates. We've shown you all the discounts each company offers, too. But, at the end of the day, which carrier is the right carrier for you and your specific needs?

Farmers might be best for you if....

  • You have a clean driving record, free of collisions, tickets, or DUIs.
  • Your home is located in the suburbs.
  • You have a short drive to work everyday.

Great Northern might be best for you if...

  • You like the personalized touch of a small, local company.
  • Your credit score is high.

Hopefully, this guide helps you get a better idea of the difference between Farmers and Great Northern. We also hope we've given you the information you need to make the best decision when it comes to your auto insurance.

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

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Farmers vs. Great Northern FAQs

Is Farmers or Great Northern cheaper?

Farmers is the less expensive of the two companies when looking at national average premiums, with policies averaging $203 a month with Farmers and $496 for Great Northern. However, that doesn't mean Farmers will be the most affordable carrier for everyone, since there are a variety of different factors that are considered when it comes to your insurance payment.

Who is better, Farmers or Great Northern?

Sadly, the answer truly is "it depends.". Neither company is "better" for everyone -- it all comes down to what your unique car insurance profile looks like. For example, Great Northern is more affordable for drivers with excellent credit, while Farmers offers cheaper prices for drivers with a recent DUI.

Why do Farmers and Great Northern offer me different rates?

Insurance carriers use a lot of different variables when calculating the rates they charge. Things such as gender, where you park your car, your driving record, age, and sometimes even things like your credit score can all come into play. Both Farmers and Great Northern calculate prices differently, so it's likely they'll offer different premiums. The best way to determine which carrier is the cheapest for you is by comparing personalized quotes from a bunch of different companies.

How do I know if Farmers or Great Northern is right for me?

The only way to find the car insurance company that's right for you is by getting quotes from multiple carriers and finding the one best suited for your individual budget. Luckily, does all the hard work for you. Just enter your information once and you'll get quotes from dozens of your local top auto insurance companies for free. With those, you can guarantee you're getting the lowest rate. And maybe you'll find that the best carrier for you isn't Farmers or Great Northern 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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