How Does Age Affect How Much You Pay for Car Insurance?

by Quiana Darden Updated October 5th, 2021

Why Does Age Affect My Car Insurance Rates?

Age helps determine every car insurance quote. Your age represents your driving experience and your likelihood of getting into an accident and making a claim to the insurer. In general, risk is the enemy of profits for car insurance companies, and a careful analysis of your age (and other driver’s profile factors) leads to an accurate idea of how to insure you safely. 

Because they connect your age with your potential for high claims, the more years you have behind the wheel, the better. An experienced driver will, in theory, submit fewer claims for reimbursement and keep the insurance company profitable enough to offer the lowest prices. 

Still, it is too simple to assume that your car insurance will go down with time, merely as you age out of high-risk, age-based categories. Instead, you can look at it just like the insurance companies: “Based on my age, low quotes are likely but not certain.”

By understanding industry averages for premiums in different age groups, you’ll be able to avoid companies that are not charitable with younger drivers and seek out those that look at all factors on your driver’s profile to get the cheapest car insurance available to you. 

Explore the categories for young, experienced, and mature drivers below to discover what to expect as you shop for car insurance quotes through Compare.com.

Drivers Ages 18 to 25

If you are a teen driver, you’re likely to pay a premium that is three times as expensive as the rates given to drivers in their thirties. And, compared to drivers as mature as 50, you are likely to pay four times the amount. 

Even when you age out of your teen years, you are likely to pay more for car insurance until 25. That’s because those 20 to 24 are almost a third more likely to get into a highway accident or fatality. For this reason, many insurance seekers know that 25 is a milestone age in their adult life as well as for their car insurance premiums. 

By the time you turn 25, you’re not guaranteed a rate decrease, but many insurance providers recognize that 25-year-olds get in fewer accidents and result in fewer fatalities. But, even if you have a way to go before you reach a premium-decreasing age, certain insurance providers are more understanding and generous than others.

Best Insurance Providers for Young Drivers

Among the major car insurance companies, three are the most helpful for drivers in their teens and early twenties. We choose TravelersUSAA, and Progressive for these insurance seekers because they usually offer lower premiums and plenty of possible discounts (in addition to excellent ratings from customers). 

One way to find out if your preferred car insurer can work with teens and young adults to secure low rates is by not only getting a quote but exploring potential savings for being a college student, going away for school, and getting good grades. Offering discounts helps teens and young adults access car insurance without a significant burden when starting their careers and independence. Companies like Travelers and Progressive offer good student discounts alongside driver education rate reductions if you are willing to invest a few hours in education to become a safer, more defensive driver. 

USAA offers similar discounts, but they are limited to active military and family.

Choosing a more lenient and compassionate car insurance company means even a teen driver can lower the cost of their car insurance whether they’re on a shared, family plan or an individual one. 

Average Insurance Rates for Drivers Ages 18 to 25

According to our data from thousands of quotes from major car insurance companies, the youngest drivers will receive the highest average quote on their initial car insurance. For example, in the averages below, you can see an 18-year-old paying about $227 per month for the same car insurance a 25-year-old can access for almost half the price at $130 per month. 

See where you fit into the scheme of age-based car insurance quotes using our data:

Age

Monthly Insurance Rate

18 years old

$227

19 years old

$196

20 years old

$188

21 years old

$161

22 years old

$150

23 years old

$154

24 years old

$136

25 years old

$130

These rates should give you an idea of what you can expect to pay before seeking discounts. Remember to keep your insurance company informed of how much you drive (since parked cars do not cause accidents) and to mind what kind of car you drive (since some cars are safer than others). 

All a young driver can do to beat these high insurance rates is wait to get older. That’s why they must practice safe driving to avoid moving violations, accidents, and claims that will keep their premiums high even as they become more mature and experienced drivers. 

Drivers Ages 26 to 64

By the time a driver turns 26, they have started to scale down from the risk factors that car insurance companies look at to determine how safe you are likely to be on the road and how likely you are to ultimately make a claim against the insurance company after an accident. In part, this is because you have more experience on the road and probably drive a safer car than in your early adulthood.

You can secure increasingly lower rates if you have a clean driving record without tickets, violations, accidents, and claims. And, as you move through milestones in your life that demonstrate stability, security, and maturity (such as getting married), insurance providers are likely to offer you even more discounts to help you save. 

As you get closer to 30 years old, rates for car insurance will drop to their lowest point because these are considered safe and trusted drivers without much more statistical chance of getting into an accident and making a claim than any other category of driver. Your premium is likely to sit around $120 per month or nearly $2,000 per year to insure your car with the legally required coverage. Beyond this, you can drop a few dollars off the rate with common life events like marriage.

Best Insurance Providers for Married vs. Single Adults

Some drivers are surprised to learn they can save considerably simply by being married rather than single. When you commit to marriage, car insurance companies observe this as a sign you are more financially secure and unlikely to take risks that single drivers (even those of the same age) can tolerate. 

Based on our data, married drivers can save around $125 each year by taking their vows—however unrelated that might seem. With this 5% savings, drivers of the same age who remain single can still expect to pay more, depending on their age, because they present more risk than their married counterparts. For instance, we see married couples paying an average of $92 per month for car insurance rather than the $107 per month that a single driver of the same age would pay. 

In addition to these savings, married couples can save further through joint policies. Suppose your partner, for example, has struggled with risk factors like creditworthiness or negative marks on their record. In that case, these can be helped by pairing your coverage instead of getting individual policies. Then, multi-car discounts can be obtained by these married, joint policyholders to get the best possible rates. 

In our research, Progressive and State Farm are most generous with married and single adults between 26 and 65. They will cut the premium on car insurance most for married drivers who pay about 15% less on average. So, when single drivers with Progressive could pay over $2,000 each year on their comprehensive car insurance coverage, married drivers with the same profile would pay just $1,800 or so annually. Married drivers who choose State Farm may pay even less with an average rate of around $1,600 annually for full coverage.

Drivers Over 65

Drivers nearing or entering retirement can command great rates on car insurance—depending on the insurer—especially compared to teens and young adults with the same coverage and car. Driving experience helps senior drivers get lower rates, paying a fraction of what younger drivers must pay each year. 

On average, we see senior drivers paying around $150 per month for full coverage. This is equivalent to about $1,800 annually for comprehensive car insurance in your state, which is slightly higher than the averages we see for younger groups. Becoming a senior introduces new age-based risks into the insurance company’s quotes. That means they will pay more than those between 30 and 50 with the same overall profile of financial stability and personal characteristics. 

The average cost of senior car insurance can be helped by discounts available to seniors from certain insurance companies. However, the most savings come built-in when older drivers live in safer areas, have more financial stability, and still experience fewer accidents statistically. 

Best Insurance Providers for Senior Drivers

In our look at the best car insurance companies for drivers of advanced age, we see some improvements upon the overall average premium for senior coverage:

Company

Monthly Rates

MetroMile

$49/mo.

Commonwealth Casualty

$53/mo.

Clearcover

$56/mo.

Dairyland

$57/mo.

Mercury

$57/mo.

Our customers offer the widest range of savings and discounts for these safer drivers with more experience and a more budget-conscious mindset. Unfortunately, beyond the age of 65, drivers are likely to see yearly increases in their coverage. For example, those in their seventies can again pay $2,000+ for the same coverage they used to secure for much less. 

How Do I Get the Best Rates for My Age?

Several strategies suit drivers of each age group for discovering the best car insurance premium for them. Shopping around, getting discounts, and joining policies are all popular and smart ways of cutting the cost of car insurance without affecting the coverage amounts and allowances you need to drive legally and comfortably. 

In addition to these, you can look into taking advantage of the way insurance companies calculate your quote by understanding car insurance factors like the kind of car you drive and your driving record. Though driving safely and driving a vehicle that is less likely to cause an accident or result in a theft indeed help, comparing rates and researching car insurance discounts is most effective. 

Compare Rates Regularly 

The simple answer to finding the best rate on car insurance for your age group is to shop, shop, shop. Researching your options is the most effective way to save money on car insurance costs, no matter who you are. If you use Compare.com to find cheap car insurance, you’ll see that teens, the middle-aged, and seniors can all find great rates with a bit of help from custom and comparable quotes. 

We recommend shopping for quotes from at least three different insurance companies, especially those that suit your age group most. You can easily find quotes online and make it easy to compare quotes from insurance companies competing for your business. This is a great annual project for drivers in the youngest and oldest driving age groups. 

By regularly comparing your current car insurance premiums to competitors’ quotes, you’ll know you are holding the best possible and cheapest rate available when you keep up with the car insurance market using tools like Compare.com.

Research Potential Discounts 

Car insurance rates will start high, come down, and rise again as you age into and between different groups and risk categories. This means looking into potential discounts on your car insurance is an excellent idea at any age—whether you are a teen just beginning to drive or a senior looking at a low rate for a car you infrequently drive.

For instance, senior drivers can secure slightly lower premiums on their car insurance by letting insurance companies know how much they will be driving. Changing their profile from a “commuter” status can shave off a few dollars by cutting the true miles driven each year and selecting a “leisure” category instead. 

Teens, young adults, and seniors can also lower their premiums for savings by taking defensive driving courses, which most insurance companies recognize as a deserving reason to cut costs. The commitment for these courses is relatively reasonable when they are offered both online and in-person, running a price of as little as $20 per course. And, many states mandate that seniors and teens save on their auto insurance by taking on additional instruction. 

FAQs About How Age Affects Car Insurance

What is the cheapest age to buy car insurance? 

You will likely have to buy car insurance at an early and expensive age if you start driving after 18. But, you can look forward to having the lowest car insurance rates available by the time you pass the age of 26 and approach your most mature and capable years from 30 to 50. Drivers in this age range cause the fewest accidents because they are more risk-averse and have the most significant level of financial power and responsibility. 

When should I reassess my car insurance rates? 

Car insurance rates change regularly, and we recommend looking into whether you have the lowest auto insurance rate at least once per year. By researching how your current premium compares to others on the market, you’ll know you’re getting the best deal without sacrificing coverage. Check quotes with a tool like Compare.com, and keep saving as much money as possible since the insurance market can change rapidly from year to year. 

How important is age when determining car insurance prices? 

Age is not only a central factor in determining your car insurance rate. It also interacts with other factors on your driver’s profile, such as location, gender, marital status, and creditworthiness. The youngest drivers are most likely to get into an accident, cause a fatality, and claim against the company. At the same time, the oldest drivers reintroduce risk into the driving situation for insurers, though they hardly ever pay equivalent rates compared to teens. 

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