Auto Insurance Basics

Who Has The Cheapest Auto Insurance Quotes in Ohio?

Find the Cheapest Insurance Quotes in Your Area

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We studied auto insurance quotes in cities across Ohio to determine which companies were the most affordable (and most expensive). Car insurance rates in Ohio can cost $726 or $61 per month for our sample driver with a liability policy above the state minimum. Our study also found that the most expensive insurers cost nearly 3.5x the cheapest auto insurance company in Ohio. This illustrates the importance of comparison shopping - in order to get good rates, drivers should grab quotes from at least three companies before deciding which to insure with. Read more below, or enter your zip code above to see a list of companies to begin shopping from.

Cheapest Auto Insurance Companies in Ohio

As part of our analysis, we compared quotes at 28 auto insurers for one sample driver, a thirty year old single male in the state of Ohio, to find the ones with the lowest costs. Here are the five most affordable insurers ranked from the cheapest to the most expensive in Ohio from our analysis:

This graph ranks five companies included in our analysis from the cheapest auto insurance rates to the most expensive for our sample drivers

Find the Cheapest Auto Insurance Quotes in Your Area

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Based on our analysis, the best rates in Ohio came from Grange Insurance, GEICO, Frankenmuth, Progressive, and Motorists Mutual, which is a local company in Ohio. Grange Insurance had the lowest rates at $726 annually, and GEICO’s rates were just $7 higher at $733. Rounding out our cheapest three were Frankenmuth with annual premiums of $784. This list might be different depending on where you live in Ohio, and your actual quotes will reflect your driving profile, the liability limits you choose, as well as the kind of car you drive, etc.

Most Expensive Auto Insurance Companies

How about the most expensive companies? We found that for our single motorist, Kemper Specialty, MetLife, and Titan actually had the highest rates in the analysis. Together, these carriers averaged $2,086 a year for a policy with full coverage protection for our Ohioan. They cost about 69% more than what the typical company charged in Ohio for our profiled driver.

Here is a list of all the Ohio auto insurers we have looked at, compiled into a table for your convenience. Companies are listed from the cheapest average annual rate (for the benchmark drivers we studied) to the highest.

RankAuto Insurance CompanyAverage Annual Rate
1Grange Insurance$726
2GEICO$733
3Frankenmuth$784
4Progressive$805
5Motorists Mutual$877
6Erie$892
7The Cincinnati$903
8Nationwide$915
9Westfield$958
10State Farm$984
11Farmers$1,010
12Hastings Mutual$1,027
13Merchants Insurance Group$1,106
14Western Reserve$1,121
15American Family$1,132
16Ohio Mutual$1,155
17Central Mutual$1,219
18Allstate$1,238
19Auto Owners$1,238
20State Auto$1,344
21Encompass$1,348
22Atlantic States$1,389
23Celina Insurance$1,683
24The General$1,746
25X21st Century$1,791
26Titan$1,803
27MetLife$1,902
28Kemper Specialty$2,552

Cheapest Car Insurance in Ohio: by City

As we mentioned before, costs are quite different when comparing one city to another. In this section, we'll review premiums and the cheapest companies at the city level, starting with the biggest cities in Ohio.

Columbus, OH

The largest city in Ohio, Columbus is home to 787,000 residents and a number of other institutions. The Ohio State University, the nation's largest university, is located here, as well as Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company's headquarters. In terms of auto insurance, the average cost here actually is about par with the state average, running around $1,365 a year. 

If you're looking for cheap auto insurance quotes in Columbus, you might want to start with Frankenmuth, GEICO, and Grange Insurance, which had the lowest rates in our study. Their premium quotes averaged $813 a year - that's a savings of 40% off of the citywide average.

This graph shows which companies have the cheapest car insurance rates in Columbus, OH, and compares them to the city mean

Cleveland, OH

Home to the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, and the Cleveland Cavaliers basketball team, Cleveland comes in as the priciest city on our list. Citizens of Cleveland can expect to pay an annual auto insurance premium that's roughly $1,674, or 35% higher than the average Ohioan. Even if it is the most expensive for car insurance in the state, there is still room to save with some comparison shopping.

We found that Grange Insurance, GEICO, and Progressive were the three cheapest car insurance companies in Cleveland with an average annual cost of $812. Compared to the Cleveland average cost, these insurers were 51% cheaper. If you are a single Ohioan, we recommend adding Frankenmuth and State Farm onto your list – they came in as the fourth and fifth cheapest among 28 insurers for our sample single driver in Cleveland, and averaged $1,062.

In this chart, we present the five companies with the best auto insurance rates in Cleveland, OH.

Cincinnati, OH

With nearly 300,000 residents, Cincinnati is the third largest city in Ohio. It is the hometown of the Cincinnati Reds, and the headquarters for a wide array of corporations, from Procter & Gamble and Macy's to insurance groups such as American Financial Group and Great American Insurance Company. The cost of insuring a vehicle in Cincinnati can average $1,371 annually, which is just above the state average.  Frankenmuth, Grange Insurance, and Cincinnati Insurance (a local!), were three of companies with the lowest car insurance rates in Cincinnati. They were 41% lower than the rest of the city with an annual average of $808, or near $67 a month.

This graph displays the five carriers that ranked with the lowest insurance quotes for our drivers based on our analysis' vehicles in Cincinnati, OH

Toledo, OH

Toledo, "The Glass City", is the 4th largest city in Ohio and is bordered to the east by Lake Erie and to the north by the state of Michigan. We found car insurance quotes in Toledo to be 15% higher than the state average although they were cheaper than the second most expensive city, Youngstown (28% above OH average). Our benchmark driver found that insuring his car in Toledo cost $1,419 on average per year for a minimum policy.

Nevertheless, there are chances to save. The most affordable quotes for insuring our driver’s car were found at Frankenmuth of $792 a year on average, which was 44% lower than the mean city cost. Grange Insurance, Progressive, GEICO and Cincinnati round up the rest of the five least expensive companies. Compare at least 3 insurers before making your choice.

Displayed in this graph are the five companies in Toledo with the most affordable car insurance quotes out of our study of 28 companies.

Akron, OH

Located in the Great Lakes region near the Cuyahoga National Park, Akron is the fifth largest city in Ohio with 199,000 residents. Every summer, it hosts the World Golf Championship Bridgestone Invitational and the All-American Soap Box Derby. The annual cost of auto insurance here is $1,303, which is 5% higher than the Ohio mean. With Grange Insurance, GEICO, and Cincinnati, we found low-cost car insurance in Akron for an average as low as $768 a year.

This graph ranks the five companies out of 28 surveyed that had the lowest auto insurance costs for our drivers' basic liability insurance policy

Brunswick, OH

Located in Medina County towards the south side of the Cleveland metro area, Brunswick is the 34th largest town in the state. In our study, Brunswick ranked as the fourth cheapest city in Ohio. Brunswick's average auto insurance prices were 14% cheaper than the state average at $1,059 annually.

Findlay, OH

The 'Flag City' comes in as the cheapest on our list with rates of $1,012 annually, which is only $22 cheaper than the second most affordable city, Van Wert. From a population standpoint, Findlay ranked as the 32nd largest city in Ohio with a population around 40,000. Beyond having cheap auto insurance, Findlay is also home to one of the top 100 hospitals in the US and lays claim to being one of the 100 Best Communities for Young People.

Bowling Green, OH

Home to Bowling Green State University, the 7th largest University in Ohio, this town of 30,028 sits 25 miles south of Toledo, OH and has the third cheapest auto insurance in the Buckeye State. At $87 per month on average, or $1,038 annually, Bowling Green's insurance rates only missed out on the top spot by $26.

Mentor, OH

Ninth cheapest in the state was the city of Mentor. Located 25 miles northeast of Cleveland in Lake County, OH, Mentor is home to 47,000 residents. Amongst other awards the city has won is a 'Best Places to Live in America' ranking of 37 back in 2010. Mentor residents average paying $1,101 per year on their auto insurance.

Cuyahoga Falls, OH

A northern suburb of Akron, OH, Cuyahoga Falls rounds out our Top 10 and solidifies itself as having one of the cheaper car insurance rates in OH. At 11% cheaper than the average Ohio town, Cuyahoga Falls residents pay around $92 a month for their car insurance coverage.

Youngstown, OH

Even having lost a large percentage of their population of the last 50 years, Youngstown is still the 9th largest city in Ohio. Unfortunately, they also have the second most expensive auto insurance premiums according to our most recent car insurance study in the state. At $1,586 per year on average, Youngstown is almost 28% more expensive than the mean annual insurance rate in OH.

Euclid, OH

The first of four Cleveland-metro area towns in our bottom 5, Euclid sits 12 miles northeast of downtown Cleveland on the banks of Lake Erie. The average annual auto insurance rate in Euclid was $1,481 - fifth costliest in the state - which works out to be about $123 per month.

Lakewood, OH

Only a few miles west of the downtown area, Lakewood is our third most expensive city in Ohio for auto insurance coming in at $6 less than its 2nd place predecessor, Youngstown. Mean premiums in Lakewood can go for $1,550 a year.

Best Auto Insurance Companies in Ohio

Just looking at companies with the cheapest rates doesn't always answer the question as to which insurance provider to pick. For example, if a company has cheap rates but horrible customer service, it may not be worth the headache for certain drivers. Below you'll find a list of 31 major auto insurers in Ohio (measured by market cap) and the complaint ratio for each. The complaint ratio represents the number of complaints a company gets in 2013 in comparison to their total premiums written. The lower the complaint ratio, the better the company. Companies that are not on this list could mean that the Ohio government did not receive its consumer complaint report in 2013.

Based on this metric, Central Mutual, State Auto, and Motorists Mutual (also our third cheapest insurer!) are the three best rated car insurance companies in Ohio. Cincinnati Insurance, our second lowest cost insurer, followed right behind.

Rank Company 2013 Written Premiums OH Market Share (%) 2013 Complaint Ratio
1 Central Mutual $26,440,517 0.49 0.04
2 State Auto 69,644,140 1.28 0.07
3 Motorists Mutual 88,632,756 1.63 0.11
4 Cincinnati Insurance 128,477,590 2.36 0.12
4 Travelers 42,467,217 0.78 0.12
4 Western Reserve 40,102,403 0.74 0.12
7 Auto-Owners 30,341,579 0.56 0.13
8 American family 103,200,599 1.89 0.15
8 Nationwide 454,751,466 8.35 0.15
10 Westfield 148,615,095 2.73 0.16
11 Ohio Mutual 37,139,756 0.68 0.16
12 Erie 151,364,563 2.78 0.18
13 State Farm 1,029,509,479 18.9 0.19
14 Safeco 109,992,905 2.02 0.19
15 Grange Mutual 273,045,900 5.01 0.20
16 Allstate 461,036,052 8.46 0.22
17 USAA* 116,529,019 2.14 0.23
18 The Hartford 26,318,736 0.48 0.23
19 Liberty Mutual 95,000,409 1.75 0.24
20 Pekin Insurance 29,637,585 0.54 0.24
20 United Ohio Insurance 24,985,432 0.46 0.24
22 GEICO 299,214,594 5.49 0.25
22 Victoria 40,730,902 0.75 0.25
24 Progressive 691,877,871 12.69 0.26
25 Esurance 29,732,800 0.55 0.27
25 MetLife 22,080,105 0.41 0.27
27 Northbrook Insurance 29,560,235 0.54 0.37
28 Farmers 104,618,330 1.92 0.39
29 Safe Auto 54,951,026 1.01 0.66
30 The General 25,499,972 0.47 0.78
31 Alfa 25,315,071 0.47 1.11

*USAA only sells auto insurance policies to motorists with a military affiliation - they have to be either a retired or active personnel or officer in the military, or related to someone who is.

Car Insurance Costs in Ohio: by City

Here's a look at the some of the other largest cities in the state and where they stack up against other towns. The cities are listed from cheapest to most expensive and the number in the chart represents the average annual auto insurance premium.

This graph shows the average cost for our benchmark drivers for a minimum liability policy across 21 companies for the largest cities in Ohio

Here's a table of the 52 cities we looked at in Ohio, with cities listed in alphabetical order. You'll also see how much cheaper or more expensive rates are than the state average (negative numbers indicate cheaper than average places).

RankCityAverage Annual RateChange vs. State Average
35Akron$1,303 5%
22Athens$1,166 -6%
28Austintown$1,213 -2%
17Beavercreek$1,131 -8%
31Boardman$1,233 0%
3Bowling Green$1,038 -16%
4Brunswick$1,059 -14%
32Canton$1,254 1%
44Cincinnati$1,371 11%
52Cleveland$1,674 35%
49Cleveland Heights$1,531 24%
43Columbus$1,365 10%
10Cuyahoga Falls$1,102 -11%
37Dayton$1,310 6%
19Delaware$1,150 -7%
36Dublin$1,303 5%
11Elyria$1,103 -11%
48Euclid$1,481 20%
25Fairfield$1,184 -4%
1Findlay$1,012 -18%
41Gahanna$1,328 7%
39Grove City$1,315 6%
27Hamilton$1,198 -3%
38Hilliard$1,313 6%
33Huber Heights$1,262 2%
16Kettering$1,123 -9%
50Lakewood$1,550 25%
20Lancaster$1,155 -7%
12Lima$1,104 -11%
18Lorain$1,149 -7%
5Mansfield$1,059 -14%
6Marion$1,083 -12%
24Massillon$1,181 -4%
9Mentor$1,101 -11%
21Middletown$1,156 -6%
7New London$1,084 -12%
23Newark$1,175 -5%
46North Royalton$1,463 18%
26Parma$1,188 -4%
42Reynoldsburg$1,329 8%
30Springfield$1,228 -1%
13Stow$1,114 -10%
15Strongville$1,119 -9%
14Tipp City$1,115 -10%
45Toledo$1,419 15%
40Upper Arlington$1,322 7%
2Van Wert$1,034 -16%
29Warren$1,222 -1%
8Wellington$1,086 -12%
34Westerville$1,272 3%
47Westlake$1,464 18%
51Youngstown$1,586 28%

Minimum Auto Insurance Coverage Requirements in Ohio

Ohio's minimum liability insurance requirements are 25/50/25. We used a slightly more comprehensive policy for the study, and added on uninsured motorist bodily injury liability and property damage to match.

Ohio Limits
Bodily Injury (BI) $25,000 per person / $50,000 per accident
Property Damage (PD) $25,000
Uninsured Motorist BI Optional
Uninsured Motorist PD Optional

Study Methodology

The sample quotes we obtained were for a 2011 Toyota Camry that the sample driver, a thirty year old single male, owned. His credit is excellent, and he has clean driving records in the past 5 years. For the purpose of the study, in a typical year, our hypothetical driver logs 12,000 miles in his vehicle which he primarily uses to commute to and from work.

Finally, we looked at quotes from 28 auto insurance companies – including ones with national coverage and ones who are local – and averaged the sample rates to come up with a city average. Among the companies, these were some Ohio locals: Cincinnati Insurance, Grange Mutual, Motorists Mutual, Ohio Mutual, and State Auto.

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