We analyzed quotes to study how much car insurance costs are impacted by location in North Carolina. Having examined more than a 100 cities in the state, we found that costs can range by as much as 35% between the most expensive place (Fayetteville, NC) and the most affordable city (Asheville, NC). For the sample driver in our study, that translated to an annual cost difference of $252 between the two cities.
Out of the more than 100 cities, the five that ranked as the least expensive are all located in the Western half of the state. Quotes here ranged from 6-10% lower than the state average for our sample driver. The graph below depicts the five areas on the more affordable side of the spectrum compared to the state benchmark.
Home to over 83,000, Asheville is the least expensive city in our North Carolina study. Our sample driver living here would see rates that are 10%, or $82, less than the state average. The world’s biggest active archive of weather data can be found at the United States National Climatic Data Center located in Asheville.
Originally called Mebanesville, Mebane was named after the Revolutionary War general, Alexander Mebane, Jr. Costs collected in our study here were 6% lower than the the North Carolina mean. This meant a cost difference of $52 per year for our sample driver compared to living in other cities in the state.
Winston-Salem is the corporate headquarters for many large companies such as Krispy Kreme Doughnuts and HanesBrands, Inc. Based on our motorist, Winston-Salem quotes were generally 6% lower than the state average. In other words, he would pay $52 less than the the state benchmark if he lived here.
Black Mountain, NC
Unique shops and bed & breakfasts attract tourists to this town of 8,000 residents. Insurance coverage here cost our profiled driver 6% less than the state average, which amounted to an annual difference of $48 for him.
The town of King was once known as King’s Cabin after the King family that once occupied the lodging. Compared to the other towns and cities in the state, our driver saw rates in King that were 6% less than the state average (in terms of dollars, $46 less).
The most expensive places for auto insurance tended to be in the southern half of North Carolina. Depending on where our driver lived in these five places, rates could range from 13-21% more than the state average, a range of $170 at most. Below is a graph showing the five cities compared to the state benchmark.
Fayetteville ranked as the most expensive place in our North Carolina study of auto insurance costs, based on quotes collected for our driver. On average, his costs here were 21% higher than the state mean, which translated to a $170 difference. This city almost became the capital of the state, but lost by one vote to Raleigh.
This city of 5,000 residents is the largest in Columbus County. Our profiled motorist living in Whiteville received quotes that were 16% higher than the state average here, which equaled to an annual difference of $129 for him.
Lumberton was once a shipping point for lumber, perhaps the reason behind the name of the city. Costs were 15% higher than the state benchmark, meaning that our driver could potentially pay $119 more than the state average if he lived here.
Based on our studied driver profile, costs in Raeford were 15% above the North Carolina mean, which translates to an annual cost difference of $119. Raeford’s population of 5,000 people is spread over 4 square miles in Hoke County.
Rounding out our list of the five most expensive places in NC is Laurinburg. If our sample driver lived here, he would find rates that were 13% higher, or $106 more, than the state average. Laurinburg is home to St. Andrews University and the Laurinburg Institute.
We surveyed 113 places in North Carolina and found the state average cost of car insurance to be $807 a year for our profiled driver. Depending on where he lived in the state, costs could range from being 10% lower than to 21% higher than the state average. Here is a table of the cities ranked from low to high:
|Rank||City||Average Annual Rate||Rate Difference|
For the purpose of the study, we collected 1,254 auto insurance quotes from 11 unique car insurance carriers for a single 30-year-old single man. The policy quoted for was for a 2011 Toyota Camry, owned by the sample driver and used to commute, with a 12,000 average annual mileage. We kept all variables constant except the locations used to collect the quotes. The insurance coverage chosen for our study was higher than the North Carolina minimum requirements. Below is a table comparing the required insurance coverage with limits used in our study.
|Coverage Type||State Req. Limits||Study Assumption Limits|
|Bodily Injury (BI)||$30,000 per person / $60,000 per accident||$50,000 per person / $100,000 per accident|
|Property Damage (PD)||$25,000 per accident||$50,000 per accident|
|Uninsured Motorist BI||$30,000 per person / $60,000 per accident||$50,000 per person / $100,000 per accident|