Average Cost of Car Insurance (December 2020)

Average Cost of Car Insurance (December 2020)

Car insurance costs vary by hundreds, or even thousands of dollars, depending on your unique circumstances. Compare rates to find the best savings.

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The average cost of a car insurance policy is $937 per year, or $78 per month for a policy that meets the minimum requirements of each state. But the price of your policy will be unique to your situation.

Compare rates to find savings and learn how much car insurance costs for you

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Because quotes vary for every individual, comparing rates is often the best way to find savings on car insurance. Our analysis — based on hundreds of thousands of quotes collected nationwide — backs that up.

We always recommend getting quotes from multiple auto insurers in order to find the rate most favorable to you. Get a quote now by clicking above or read on to see how much average car insurance costs break down for you.

We compare average auto insurance rates by company, location, age and gender, vehicle type, accident history, DUI record, credit score and marital status. To find out how much car insurance costs by each of these attributes, make a selection from the drop down menu.

Find average insurance rates by:
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How much does car insurance cost by company

Here we've listed average rates for full coverage auto insurance and minimum coverage auto insurance by company.

State Farm is the cheapest widely available car insurance company for both minimum and full coverage.

Farmers is the most expensive on average for both policy types.

A minimum coverage policy is the cheapest policy you can buy. As its name suggests, it only meets the minimum requirements for an auto insurance policy in any given state.

A full coverage policy usually adds comprehensive and collision coverage to a minimum coverage policy. It's not as cheap as minimum coverage, but provides you more protection for your car. In this case, we've used full coverage policies with extra liability coverage over state minimums, with details provided in the methodology.

Average costs increase by more than 150% and rankings change slightly if you're looking for a full coverage auto insurance policy.

Compare Auto Insurance Quotes in Your Area

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In the table below, you can see how average annual rates for 13 of the biggest auto insurers in the country compared based on online quotes we obtained for a sample 30-year-old driver.

Click on a company name to read our full review.

RankCompanyMinimum coverage rateFull coverage rate
2Farm Bureau Mutual (IA Group)$436$1,781
4Auto-Owners Insurance$649$2,112
5State Farm*$712$1,737
6American Family$811$2,041
Insurers with an asterisk offered quotes in at least 20 states.

Average car insurance rates by state

Location is an important factor in determining auto insurance rates. Insurance is regulated at the state level, and even within a state, drivers in different ZIP codes can be priced differently.

Consult the following table for the average annual cost of insurance in your state — and how it compares to other states — for both full coverage policies and policies that only meet minimum state requirements.

How much auto insurance costs in each state

RankStateFull coverageMinimum coverageDifference
2Rhode Island$3,847$1,589$2,258
8New Jersey$3,013$1,182$1,831
9Washington D.C.$2,793$1,260$1,533
10New York$2,752$1,323$1,429
13 (tie)Connecticut$2,619$1,192$1,428
13 (tie)Georgia$2,619$1,114$1,505
21South Dakota$2,338$420$1,917
27New Mexico$2,194$699$1,495
29West Virginia$2,131$685$1,447
34South Carolina$2,013$854$1,158
35New Hampshire$2,004$643$1,361
36North Dakota$1,979$528$1,451
49North Carolina$1,434$542$892
Rates are the average annual premium for a policy across insurers.

Cheapest states for minimum coverage car insurance

StateCost per yearCost per month
South Dakota$420$35

Most expensive states for minimum coverage car insurance

StateCost per yearCost per month
Rhode Island$1,589$132

Shoppers that want greater protection against property damage to their vehicle may consider purchasing full coverage auto insurance.

Cheapest states for full coverage car insurance

StateCost per yearCost per month
North Carolina$1,434$120

Most expensive states for full coverage car insurance

StateCost per yearCost per month
Rhode Island$3,847$321

How much car insurance rates cost by age and gender

For example, an 18-year-old driver pays more than twice as much as a 25-year-old driver for auto insurance with all other factors held equal. Average rates gradually decrease with each year at young ages.

Auto insurance quotes also vary depending on the driver's age and their years of experience. Young and inexperienced drivers tend to be more dangerous behind the wheel, which is why insurance companies charge them higher auto insurance rates.

Annual Full Coverage Car Insurance Quotes by Age

This graph shows average car insurance quotes for a selection of ages from 18 to 30

Average annual car insurance costs can decrease significantly between the ages of 18 and 25, as insurers tend to evaluate older drivers as both less risky and likely to file a claim.

AgeAverage annual premium

Among drivers that are 30 or older, auto insurance rates vary little by gender. But among younger drivers, males can be charged 10% or more than their female counterparts.

Driver profileAnnual auto insurance premium
18-year-old female$6,797
18-year-old male$7,561

Why is this the case? Insurance companies look at data trends showing that in comparison to young women, young men tend to:

  1. Drive more often
  2. Receive more speeding tickets
  3. Be involved in more accidents
  4. Receive more DUI convictions

Because of the increased likelihood that the car insurance company will have to pay out for a claim by insuring these drivers, they often charge young men more for coverage.

These differences in rates do not hold true in all states, however. The following states preclude insurers from using gender when setting auto insurance rates.

  • California
  • Hawaii
  • Massachusetts
  • Parts of Michigan
  • Montana
  • North Carolina
  • Pennsylvania

This means that males and females in the state will pay the same amount for car insurance in those locations, provided all other factors affecting rates are equal.

How much is the average cost of car insurance by vehicle?

Car insurance costs can differ based on vehicle make and model.

We found that rates for the latest Ford F-150 and our base car, the 2015 Honda Civic EX, were the cheapest when compared to the most recent base models of the country's top-selling vehicles.

ModelAverage annual rateMSRP
2019 Ford F-150 XL$2,898$28,155
2015 Honda Civic EX$2,991N/A
2019 Toyota RAV4 LE$3,060$25,650
2019 Mazda MX-5 Miata Club$3,131$29,590
2019 Dodge Grand Caravan GT$3,163$27,040
2019 Nissan Rogue S$3,174$25,020
2019 Kia Niro EX$3,278$23,490
2019 Toyota Camry L$3,360$24,095
2019 Tesla Model 3$4,237$35,000
Rates are the average annual premium for a full coverage policy.

The higher Manufacturer Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) of an SUV or pickup may lead people to believe they'll pay commensurately higher insurance premiums, but this is not always true. As our data shows, the Ford F-150 has the cheapest annual insurance premium, despite having a higher MSRP than many other vehicle models. Superior safety features and a lower chance of a total loss are likely contributing factors in making bigger cars cheaper to insure.

Average cost of car insurance before and after an accident

Insurance companies price their policies based on risk, and a driver who has a history of accidents will be charged higher rates.

Among our sample insurers, insurance rates rose by 41% on average after an accident.

Progressive saw the largest increase in insurance rates, with premiums going up by almost 60% for a driver with one at-fault accident on his record. Conversely, State Farm penalized drivers the least after one crash. Its rates increased by only 19% for our sample driver.

Drivers who have a history of accidents or traffic violations should take special care to shop around for auto insurance policies. Your combination of accident history, vehicle, location and other factors may be priced entirely differently with another insurance company, and switching to an equivalent policy with a rival insurer has the potential to save you hundreds of dollars per year.

CompanyClean recordOne accidentPercentage increase
State Farm$1,737$2,07519%
Farm Bureau$1,781$2,67550%
American Family$2,041$2,96245%
Rates are an annual average for our sample driver with a full coverage policy.

Average cost of auto insurance for drivers with a DUI on their record

Insurers generally charge drivers with a DUI history higher rates due to the increased risk of accidents associated with such behavior.

Drivers with a DUI history pay 115% more on average for car insurance compared to drivers with a clean record. Applied to our national average, this means drivers with a DUI pay $2,749 more per year for car insurance.

Among the ten states included in this analysis, North Carolina saw the largest relative increase in insurance rates, with premiums going up by almost 290% for a driver with a DUI on his record. Conversely, Florida penalized drivers the least after a DUI. Its rates increased by only 37% for our sample driver.

Drivers who have a history of driving under the influence or while intoxicated should consider comparing quotes from multiple carriers. Your record may be assessed differently across insurers, so getting several rates can help you find savings.

StateClean recordDUI on recordPercentage increase
Rates are an annual average for our sample driver with a full coverage policy in the ten most populous U.S. states.

How much does car insurance cost for drivers with good credit?

Drivers with good credit are considered lower-risk by insurance companies and, as a result, can receive substantial savings on their auto insurance policies.

We found that if our sample driver had an excellent credit history, he received an average discount of 35% on his annual premium compared to if he had poor or no credit history, across our sample insurers.

CompanyPoor or no creditExcellent creditDiscount
Farm Bureau$436$32027%
State Farm$716$37548%
American Family$811$4969%
Rates are an annual average for our sample driver with a minimum required coverage policy.

Farmers gave our sample driver the biggest discount for excellent credit, more than halving his quote, and going from the most expensive insurer (13th) to the 9th most expensive in the process.

MetLife had the smallest discount, and as a consequence ranked as the most expensive insurer for our sample driver with excellent credit.

How much does marital status affect average auto insurance costs?

Insurers usually charge single drivers more for car insurance than married individuals. Married drivers are often seen as more financially stable and risk averse, and therefore, charged lower rates than single drivers.

In the ten largest U.S. states, single drivers tended to pay $110 more for full coverage auto insurance per year compared to married drivers.

Annual full-coverage car insurance quotes by marital status

Rates are the average annual premium for a full coverage policy.

Divorced drivers are treated similar to single drivers, as insurers price nearly equivalent quotes for these groups. Widowed drivers, however, see some discount relative to single and divorced drivers but still pay slightly more than married drivers on average.

What else can affect average car insurance rates?

We've discussed how the following factors affect your car insurance premiums:

  • Company
  • State of residence
  • Policy coverage
  • Age
  • Vehicle type
  • Accident and credit history

But there are even more factors that can affect how much your car insurance rates costs:

  1. Driving experience
  2. Location within a state
  3. Insurance and claims history
  4. Mileage
  5. Discounts

If you're a 30-year-old who's held an insurance policy and been licensed since they were 16, you're likely to get a cheaper rate than another 30-year-old who just took up driving.

Driving experience: Age affects car insurance rates, but so does the number of years you've been insured.

Location within a state: Auto insurance is regulated differently in each state, leading to average prices for a full coverage policy ranging from just under $1,300 (Maine) to over $8,700 (Michigan). But even within a state, insurers considered certain locations, or territories in insurance terms, to be higher risk.

If you live in an area an insurer considers higher risk due to its rate of crashes, weather or crime, you may be subject to a higher rate than an equivalent driver living elsewhere.

Insurance and claims history: If you've maintained continuous auto insurance coverage, your insurer will be more confident that you've protected yourself and will usually charge a lower rate. Likewise, if you have a history of holding auto insurance policies without filing claims, you'll get cheaper rates than someone who has filed claims in the past.

Mileage: Cars that are driven less frequently are less likely to be involved in a crash or other damaging event. Vehicles with lower annual mileage may qualify for slightly lower rates.

Discounts: Auto insurance companies offer a variety of discounts for those who take steps to become safer drivers or demonstrate responsible behavior. For example, adults can take defensive driving lessons, while young adults can qualify for good student discounts.

Forget the averages, how much does auto insurance cost for me?

Our estimates are a good starting point, but the only way to find the cheapest — and best-fitting — car insurance for you is to obtain quotes and shop around your options, either with your own research or by talking to an agent or broker. How expensive or cheap your policy will be depends on how your profile fits the factors we've discussed.

icon of insurance policy

To find the best car insurance for you, you should:

  • Comparison shop online, or
  • Talk to an insurance agent or broker

You can shop for car insurance yourself online, but be sure to keep track of the coverages selected by you and offered by insurers to ensure you're making a fair comparison.

Alternatively, you can talk to an insurance agent or insurance broker who can help you find the best combination of price and fit. You should be aware, however, that agents and brokers operate on commission paid by the insurers themselves. Independent agents work for multiple insurance companies and can compare among them, whereas captive agents work for only one insurance company.

Given the different rating methodologies and factors used by insurers, no single insurance company will be best for everyone. To get a better understanding of your typical car insurance cost, spend some time comparing quotes across companies with your chosen method.


We collected quotes across 50 states and Washington, D.C. for 51 insurance companies. Although 51 insurance companies were included in the analysis, insurance company rates were only included in our company lists if their policies were available in at least five states.

Our base driver was a 30-year-old male who drove a 2015 Honda Civic EX, and quotes were drawn from all available ZIP codes in each state. The driver was profiled as having no credit history, which makes him equivalent to a driver with below-fair to poor credit, according to our data source, Quadrant Information Services.

When our driver had a full coverage policy, we gave him coverage limits slightly above any one state's minimum requirements.

Full coverage policy

Coverage typeStudy limits
Bodily liability$50,000 per person/ $100,000 per accident
Property damage$25,000 per accident
Uninsured/underinsured motorist BI$50,000 per person/ $100,000 per accident
Comprehensive & collision$500 deductible
Personal injury protectionMin. when required by state

Our rates for minimum coverage policies represent the average cost of a policy that meets any state's minimum required auto insurance coverage.

Data on age and gender were drawn solely from the 10 most populous states.

ValuePenguin's analysis used insurance rate data from Quadrant Information Services. These rates were publicly sourced from insurer filings and should be used for comparative purposes only — your own quotes may be different.

Mark is a Senior Research Analyst for ValuePenguin focusing on the insurance industry, primarily auto insurance. He previously worked in financial risk management at State Street Corporation.

Editorial Note: The content of this article is based on the author’s opinions and recommendations alone. It has not been previewed, commissioned or otherwise endorsed by any of our network partners.