Before you settle on an auto insurance policy, it helps to know how to use a car insurance estimator to get the lowest rates.
Are you looking to get a car insurance estimate?
Every driver is required to have some form of car insurance, but the amounts vary based on what the state requires. By getting a car insurance estimate, you prepare your budget and can find the best provider for your needs. We have already researched the best car insurance companies, but now we will look at the factors that affect your rates.
If you want to save even more, it helps to compare multiple car insurance quotes to find the best fit for you and your car. Enter our zip code in the quote comparison tool below to get started. Or, for an even easier process, call our team at (855) 518-0148 to get free, personalized quotes seven days a week.
In this article:
- What Is An Average Car Insurance Rate?
- How Does Age Change Your Car Insurance Estimate?
- How Does Marital Status Impact Your Car Insurance Estimate?
- How Does Driving History Affect Your Car Insurance Estimate?
- How Does Location Influence Your Car Insurance Estimate?
- How Does Car Type Change Your Insurance Estimate?
- How Does Your Credit Score Impact Your Car Insurance Estimate?
- How Does Your Coverage Amount Affect Your Car Insurance Estimate?
- Top Companies For Car Insurance Quotes
- Compare Your Car Insurance Estimate To Quotes
What Is An Average Car Insurance Rate?
AAA performed a study in 2019 on driving costs and found the average cost of ownership and operation of a new vehicle was $9,282 per year. That isn’t just the insurance cost, this also includes the average premium for medium sedans, which was listed at $1,251.
When looking at car insurance rates, numerous factors influence the bottom line. It’s not accurate to look at this car insurance estimate and simply assume that’s what your premium will be as well. In reality, you must dive deeper.
How Does Age Change Your Car Insurance Estimate?
If you have a young driver on your insurance policy, you already know the effect it has on your premium. Insurers penalize the inexperienced driver because of the increased risk. Adding a teen driver to your policy will likely cause an increase between 44 and 58 percent. On average, the insurance rate for a driver between the ages of 16 and 19 is $2,999, while a 20- to 24-year-old would only pay $2,040.
Of course, you don’t want to put your teen on an individual policy, because that only makes the price jump higher.
Instead, you want to focus on teaching the teen to drive well. Taking a driving course might help to lower the rates, as will having good grades in school. Furthermore, purchasing a vehicle with anti-theft and driver-assist features will also help to keep the premiums low.
For the most part, coverage options are cheaper for drivers between the ages of 30 and 65. After this, seniors will begin to see the premiums start to increase because of the heightened risk of accidents.
How Does Marital Status Impact Your Car Insurance Estimate?
Statistically speaking, married couples are a lower risk to insurance providers than a single driver, those who are divorced, or those who have been widowed. Some studies suggest that married couples are half as likely to be injured in a car accident. While there are a lot of speculations regarding what makes married drivers safer, nothing has been proven.
Some people believe that they drive less, while others assume that married people are more stable. Whatever the reasoning, insurance companies are happy to offer lower premiums.
In states that recognize same-sex couples, civil unions, and domestic partnerships, you can also qualify for a lower premium from many of the top providers.
Just because newlyweds can combine auto insurance policies, doesn’t mean they always should. If you both have clean driving records, you will likely save more money. However, if one of you has a spotty record or DUI in the past, the entire policy might be penalized, thereby costing you more.
How Does Driving History Affect Your Car Insurance Estimate?
If you are an inexperienced driver, you are going to receive the highest rates, no matter what your age is. The more years that you’ve had a driver’s license, the better. The best combination is to be an experienced driver with a clean record. In fact, most insurance companies provide a safe driver discount for anyone with a spotless record.
If you’ve been in an accident or received a ticket, you naturally become a liability to the insurer. Drunk driving incidents might cause your auto insurance provider to drop you altogether. If you can’t get typical car insurance coverage, you will have to look for alternate providers that cost a whole lot more.
How Does Location Influence Your Car Insurance Estimate?
Not only are your car insurance costs determined by the state in which you live, but also the area. That’s why you must enter zip codes anytime you use a car insurance estimator.
Living in a highly populated area increases congestion, insurance claims, and accidents. These additional risks cause your rates to rise higher than if you lived in a rural location. Car insurance companies are also going to look at the number of stolen cars in your area, as well as vandalism cases, and fraudulent claims.
For some people, simply changing your zip code can save you a ton of money. You can play with these factors with an insurance calculator to see what the savings would be for you.
How Does Car Type Change Your Car Insurance Estimate?
Auto insurance companies examine the vehicles involved in the most accidents and which ones produce the most substantial injuries. Both of these factors come into play with your premiums. The provider will also examine how much your car costs, the expense of repairing it, and if the model is stolen often. All of these factors increase the collision and comprehensive insurance costs.
Some providers won’t even cover heavily modified vehicles, such as a lifted truck or kit car. In addition, if you plan to drive an exotic sports car, you will have to find a provider willing to cover it. The best thing to do is to examine your options before you sign the financing paperwork. Knowing whether your vehicle is the cheapest to insure or one of the most expensive is critical to understand before the sale. A car insurance estimator is simple to use and will give you the information you need to make an educated decision.
How Does Your Credit Score Impact Your Car Insurance Estimate?
Credit scoring is used in all states except Hawaii, Massachusetts, and California. Insurance providers use credit scores to determine the risk level. The lower the credit score is, the more likely a person is deemed to file a claim in the future.
The policy premiums go down significantly the better your credit history is. Aside from the rate, you might also face surcharges for poor credit, or be forced to pay for the entire policy in full.
How Does Your Coverage Amount Affect You Car Insurance Estimate?
If you want cheap car insurance, the easiest way to lower the bill is to adjust your coverage amounts. Each state mandates its own required coverage. These liability limits determine how much insurance you must carry by law.
Most state laws require a particular amount of liability insurance, broken down between property damage liability and bodily injury coverage. Others require some level of coverage for medical payments as well. If you get a bare-bones insurance policy, you will only pay for what the state requires. While this reduces the costs, you are still held liable for any damage you create beyond those limits. You might find that this level of risk isn’t something you are willing to take.
Furthermore, liability coverage doesn’t take care of your vehicle for an at-fault accident, theft, or vandalism. If your vehicle is a total loss, you would want to make sure you had the money to replace it. Claims can quickly turn into hundreds of thousands of dollars if multiple vehicles are involved, so make sure you have the coverage to protect yourself.
Collision and comprehensive coverage both come with a chosen deductible. If you opt for a higher deductible, you will pay more out of pocket during a claim, but your insurance rates will be lower.
You also have to factor in the extras you add to your insurance policy. Coverage such as Gap insurance, roadside assistance, and rental car reimbursement will all add to your premium.
Receive A Car Insurance Estimate
It’s not difficult to use a car insurance estimator. Most companies provide a simple quote tool on the website, so you won’t even need to speak with anyone. We recommend getting multiple auto insurance quotes and comparing policies. As you can see from the above estimates, policy rates range significantly between companies and what’s offered.
You can save a lot of money by merely taking a few minutes to see what’s available. Use this tool or call (855) 518-0148 to get free, personalized quotes.
Top Companies For Car Insurance Quotes
When you want the best auto insurance, we recommend using estimators to see your best quote from following providers, or others available in your area.
USAA Car Insurance (Top Pick)
Not only does USAA maintain an A++ financial rating from AM Best, but it regularly scores at the top of the charts from J.D. Power. You will find exceptional marks on the 2020 U.S. Auto Insurance Study, 2020 U.S. Insurance Shopping Study, and the 2020 U.S. Auto Claims Satisfaction Study. The downside to USAA is that the policies are only available to military personnel, veterans, and family members.
If you qualify, you can sign up for liability protections, comprehensive, and collision, as well as these coverage terms:
- Roadside Assistance: This additional plan covers emergency towing, gas delivery, flat tire repair, and lockout services.
- Accident Forgiveness: In select states, USAA will not raise your rates after one accident with this coverage.
- Rental Reimbursement: You can receive money toward a rental vehicle during a covered claim.
- Other Financial Products: USAA offers more than just car insurance. You can find additional insurance products for your motorcycle, home, boat, pet, life, and more.
Customers can’t say enough good things about USAA. Here’s one example:
“They have always do the right thing by me, even when it wasn't in USAA’s best interest. I have long said that if you have to be in an accident, pray the other driver has USAA insurance.”
-Matt H. via the Better Business Bureau (BBB)
To learn more, read our full USAA insurance review.
Geico Car Insurance (Runner-Up)
Another highly recommended insurer is Geico auto insurance. The company regularly offers some of the lowest rates while also providing exceptional customer service. As we look at the three studies performed by J.D. Power, we once again see average to good results for Geico. The 2020 U.S. Auto Insurance Study, 2020 U.S. Insurance Shopping Study, and the 2020 U.S. Auto Claims Satisfaction Study show that Geico is worthy of your business.
The company also has an A+ rating from the BBB, which is no small feat. Sure, there are complaints from customers, but you will find that with any provider you choose.
What you can expect from Geico is a standard list of insurance coverage, along with these optional plans:
- Roadside Assistance: Receive the help required for towing, fuel delivery, jump-starts, flat tires, lock-out, and more.
- Rental Car Coverage: If you need a vehicle while yours is in the shop for a covered repair, Geico provides a specified amount of reimbursement for your transportation requirements.
- Accident Forgiveness: Your current rate remains in place after an at-fault accident with this coverage.
- Glass Coverage: You can choose full glass protection that covers automotive glass damage after road debris hits it, a storm occurs, or other incidents.
- Protection for Belongings: If your car is broken into, you can receive extra compensation for the property that was stolen from inside.
It also doesn’t take much effort to find positive customer reviews from existing Geico policyholders.
“I’ve been a customer of Geico for close to 20 years. My kids have had a few accidents and they have been extremely professional and I have zero complaints about the claims they handled. Their service has been outstanding.”
-Kenneth A. via BBB
To learn more, read our full Geico review.
Compare Your Car Insurance Estimate To Quotes
The only way to know how much you will pay for car insurance is to get free auto insurance quotes from various companies. Try out the free quote tool or call (855) 518-0148 to see where you stand and to help you find the cheapest car insurance for you:
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