We recently analyzed auto insurance rates in the state of Illinois to give readers an indication of which companies were the cheapest for drivers. Even though the average annual cost in Illinois was just slightly over $500 for a policy meeting the state minimums, the truth is you can pay significantly more or less depending on where you live and which insurance company you decide to insure with. As such, we always tell our readers to get multiple quotes (from at least 3 different insurers!) so they can compare and get great rates. If you want to find out which auto insurers operate in your area, enter your zip code in the box above and follow through to see what quotes there are. Otherwise, continue reading to learn more about the best auto insurance rates in Illinois.
- Cheapest Auto Insurance Companies
- Best Car Insurance Rates: by City
- Best-Rated Auto Insurance Companies in Illinois
- Average Cost of Car Insurance: by City
As part of our comparison study, we looked at quotes across multiple cities from 24 different companies in the state to identify which had the cheapest rates in Illinois for car insurance. We calculated the average quote at each company based on our benchmark drivers, who were single 30 and 65 year-old men, and married couples of 30 and 65 years of age, and ranked them from the cheapest insurers to the most expensive:
Find the Cheapest Auto Insurance Quotes in Your Area
*Indicates specialty insurer. AAA is a membership-based organization that provides its users with services such as roadside assistance, and discounts on auto insurance. Dues for joining AAA are $58 a year for the Chicago / Illinois region, and will need to be renewed each year. California Casualty only provides financial services for people in select jobs, including nursing, education, firefighting, and security services.
Our quote analysis found that The Hartford was the cheapest auto insurance company in Illinois for our sample drivers, on average. Close behind The Hartford were Farmers, SECURA, COUNTRY Financial, and Cincinnati Insurance, which rounded out the top five most affordable companies for car insurance in the Prairie State. The Hartford's rates were 41% cheaper than the state average for our sample motorists - in fact, a year at the costliest company could pay for almost 3 years of coverage at The Hartford. Here are the rest of the companies:
|Rank||Company||Average Annual Rate|
With almost 58,000 square miles of land, Illinois is the fifth most populous state and the 24th largest by land mass in the country. Prices for auto insurance can vary depending on where people live and park their car in Illinois. The most expensive city in Illinois was actually not Chicago - it was Cicero, a spot just seven miles away from the city center. Costs in Cicero are about 1.6x costs in Quincy. Regardless of what average costs are in each city, comparing auto insurance quotes will lead to cheaper rates. Below you will find a table with Illinois’s 10 largest cities and their most affordable insurers, followed by some interesting stats we found about auto insurance rates in each city.
|City||Cheapest Insurer #1||Cheapest Insurer #2||Cheapest Insurer #3|
|Chicago||The Hartford||$351||COUNTRY Financial||$390||Farmers||$393|
|Aurora||Cincinnati Insurance||282||The Hartford||306||Farmers||327|
|Rockford||Hastings Mutual||237||The Hartford||309||SECURA||321|
|Joliet||The Hartford||312||SECURA||345||Cincinnati Insurance||360|
|Naperville||COUNTRY Financial||294||COUNTRY Financial||294||Farmers||303|
|Elgin||Cincinnati Insurance||282||The Hartford||303||SECURA||327|
|Waukegan||Farmers||312||The Hartford||315||Cincinnati Insurance||372|
|Cicero||The Hartford||363||COUNTRY Financial||426||Farmers||459|
The largest city in Illinois and 5th largest in the United States, more than 12 million people call the Chicago metro-area home. Chicago is also frequently referred to as the "Windy City" not because of the strong gusts blowing in off Lake Erie, but in remembrance of the politicians who ran the town in the 1800's. Auto insurance costs in the Windy City were found to be $729 per year for a state minimum policy, which works out to be 34% more expensive than our 10-city average.
If you're looking for cheap car insurance in Chicago, we suggest starting with The Hartford, COUNTRY Financial, and Farmers. The average premium quoted at the three cheapest companies in Chicago was $378 for a minimum policy, which could mean about 48% more savings compared to the typical insurer here. However, Chicago was also the city with the widest range in annual rates; the highest quote we found was $2,406. As you can tell from the wide range of quotes in Chicago, it certainly pays to compare rates before choosing an insurer.
Illinois's second largest city, Aurora is a suburban town 40 miles west of downtown Chicago with 200,000 residents inside the city limits. As one of the first US cities to have electric street lights throughout town, Aurora is nicknamed the "City of Lights" and is so large it extends into four different Illinois counties. As the 2nd most populous city in the state, Aurora fared much better than Chicago in regards to auto insurance rates. It ranked 4th best city for low auto insurance costs – $498 annually for our sample drivers' minimum limits – among the 10 cities we studied.
For low-cost auto insurance quotes in Aurora, include Cincinnati, The Hartford, Farmers, SECURA, and COUNTRY Financial in your shortlist of companies to review. We found that these 5 insurers quoted our sample drivers in Aurora similar cheap rates, with a mean quote of $318 a year – or just below $160 for a 6-month policy, which is like saving $179 more compared to the typical Aurora motorist every year. Especially in the case of Cincinnati Insurance, our sample motorists (2 single men and 2 married couples, range of age between 30 and 65) found quotes as cheap as $282 a year. Note that these rates are for a basic auto insurance policy meeting Illinois's minimum limits requirement, with some uninsured motorist protection.
Located in north-central Illinois with the beautiful Rock River running right through its downtown, Rockford, IL is the third most populated city in IL with 152,871 citizens in the city and more than double that if you include the entire metro area. Amongst other redeeming attributes of "Forest City" are its easy access to transportation, Illinois's biggest musical festival, and the affordable cost of living. Rockford's car insurance rates rank 3rd lowest among the cities we surveyed. Annual rates in Rockford on average are $493 or around $41 per month for our four profiled motorists.
We found the best auto insurance quotes in Rockford at Hastings Mutual, The Hartford, and SECURA. Also not far behind were COUNTRY Financial and Farmers, both of which offered similar coverage at around $355 a year. Rates from all five companies averaged $315 a year for a policy with limits of 25/50/25 for a Toyota – that's 36% less than the average going cost of $493 in Rockford. Whether you are married or single, we recommend including them into your insurer shopping list.
Illinois's fastest growing city and also its fourth largest, Joliet lies 45 minutes by car to the southwest of Chicago along the Des Plaines River. Formerly an industrial city, Joliet has seen significant growth in recent years from entertainment and cultural industries. Whether it's the casinos, the OTB, the racetracks, or the Rialto Square Theatre, Joliet is attracting more and more people to discover its beautiful city. Our four drivers found rates averaging $540 a year for car insurance just meeting the state's minimum requirements - almost at par with the composite average of $544.
In our analysis, however, savings could be found at these three companies, which had some of the lowest rates in Joliet: The Hartford, SECURA, and Cincinnati Insurance. Their average annual premium quote of $339 represents a 37% decrease versus the overall city. If you will like to add to some variety, also consider looking into Farmers and COUNTRY when you shop. Together, these five carriers had the most affordable auto insurance rates in Joliet for our four profiles.
The most affordable auto insurance of Illinois's largest cities, Naperville is a suburb of Chicago and home to 143,000+ residents. Although once a farming town, Naperville has transformed into an affluent city which has been on innumerable "Best Places to Live" list throughout the years, and for good reason. Amongst Naperville's other past awards is the "Best Public Library" distinction, it is also the best city to live in for cheap auto insurance rates! And although the cost of living is almost 20% higher in Naperville than in the rest of Illinois, its car insurance rates are cheaper than average at $467 per year or $39 monthly for basic 25/50/25 liability insurance for our sample motorists.
COUNTRY Financial (an Illinois local!) and The Hartford both take the cake with the cheapest auto insurance rates in Naperville with premiums running around $294 per year...37% cheaper than the Naperville average. Not far behind are Farmers, SECURA, and Cincinnati, which all represent more than $100 savings compared to what the typical Naperville insurers are charging.
Trying to judge which auto insurance company is the most reliable and has the best customer service can be difficult. One statistic we think is useful is called the 'complaint ratio'. This figure captures the number of complaints each company receives in a calendar year per $1 million in written premiums. Looking for the company with the lowest complaint ratio can give you an apples-to-apples comparison in your search for the best auto insurance company.
Below is a list of Illinois insurers' 2013 complaint ratios, as calculated and published by the Illinois Department of Insurance based on the customer complaints reported. The lower the ratio, the better the company's rating.
|Rank||Company||2013 Complaint Ratio per $1M Direct Written Premiums|
If you'd like to see the average price of auto insurance in your city here is a comprehensive list of the towns we looked at. They are listed in alphabetical order. The second column represents the average annual car insurance premiums drivers can expect to pay while the third column shows how much cheaper or more expensive rates are than the state average. Here are the average car insurance costs in 10 of Illinois's largest cities.
Auto Insurance Premiums Changes in IL
Interested in which top insurance companies have adjusted their rates recently? In January a handful of auto insurers announced rate hikes (or in one case, a reduction) for their new 2014 car insurance rates. Allstate (the 2nd largest auto insurer in the state) led the way with a 2.5% to 3.5% increase. Here are the others:
|Auto Insurer||2014 Rate Change|
|American Family Insurance||+2.0%|
|State Farm||No Change|
The sample quotes we obtained were for a basic policy to insure a 2010 Toyota Camry that is used for commute daily, averaging 10,000 to 15,000 miles a year. As for the sample driver profile, we used a total of 4 types of insured driver(s); everyone’s credit is good and driving history has been clean for the past 5 years.
- Single Male, age 30
- Single Male, age 65
- Married Couple (2 drivers), age 30
- Married Couple (2 drivers), age 65
Finally, we looked at quotes from 24 auto insurance companies licensed to do business in Illinois, and averaged the sample rates to come up with a city average. The companies we included represented a sample of the largest insurers in the state, as well as some more local companies, including but not limited to: State Farm, Allstate, Farmers, COUNTRY Financial, Cincinnati Insurance, Grange Mutual, and 21st Century.
Surveyed auto insurance costs in Illinois are for illustrative purposes only and actual quotes will vary based on your physical residence, driving history, and other factors.
Auto Insurance Coverage Requirements in Illinois
The state of Illinois requires financial responsibility and ability to pay for injury, death, and damage on the road. Their minimum auto insurance liability requirements are listed below. Note that our comparison analysis assumes slightly higher auto insurance coverage that provides more than the minimum required by state law:
|Illinois Minimum Limits||Analysis Limits|
|Bodily Injury||$20,000 per person / $40,000 per accident||$25,000 per person / $50,000 per accident|
|Uninsured Motorist Bodily Injury||$20,000 per person / $40,000 per accident||$25,000 per person / $50,000 per accident|
|Uninsured Motorist Property Damage||Optional||$25,000|
|Collision / Comprehensive Deductible||Optional||$500|