The average Charleston driver pays roughly $122 per month for car insurance. Are you paying too much?
Car insurance costs an average of $1,470 per year in Charleston, South Carolina. That's more than the average across South Carolina ($1,414) and less expensive than the national average of $1,548. Our guide to car insurance in Charleston — researched and written by The Zebra's team of licensed insurance experts — includes average premiums based on age, credit score, driving history, and marital status. Read on for more information.
|Charleston Average (annual)||South Carolina Average||National Average|
One of the best ways to save on auto insurance is to compare rates from multiple companies and to choose the insurer that best fits your coverage needs. For a typical driver, USAA offers Charleston's cheapest rates. See below the best companies for cheap auto insurance in Charleston — but don't forget to get personalized car insurance quotes to match your driving profile.
The age bracket that pays the least for auto insurance in Charleston consists of drivers in their 50s, who pay an average of $1,313. Those in their 60s don't pay significantly more ($1,353).
The Charleston drivers who face the priciest insurance rates are teenagers. One of the most effective ways to lower your car insurance rates as a driver in Charleston is to age out of your teens. The difference in rates paid by teenage drivers and drivers in their 20s in Charleston is $3,061, the largest such difference between any two age groups.
|Age group||Average Annual Rate|
In some cases, a driver's marital status and gender may affect the auto insurance rates they pay. In most locations in the US, single drivers pay more than married drivers based on data that says they're more likely to file claims. Married drivers in Charleston pay $127 less than single drivers for auto insurance. Rates for those who are widowed are also much cheaper than rates for those who are single. Interestingly enough, in Charleston, widowed drivers pay less than those who are single.
Gender is another factor that can affect car insurance rates. In Charleston, male drivers pay $34 more per year for car insurance than do female drivers.
|Marital Status/Gender||Average Annual Rate|
No matter where you live, steering clear of accidents and citations is the best way to keep your auto insurance rates affordable. At-fault accidents, DUIs, reckless driving citations, and speeding tickets all contribute to expensive auto insurance rates, as insurance companies reward low-risk drivers with the gift of affordable rates.
Two of the most expensive driving violations from an insurance perspective are reckless driving and DUI. In Charleston, a reckless driving citation results in an average insurance rate increase of $538 per year, compared to the citywide average. For comparison's sake, a DUI offense results in a $597 increase and a speeding ticket triggers a $290 rate hike.
|Violation/Incident||Average Annual Rate|
|At-fault Accident (damages < $1,000)||$1,994|
|At-fault Accident (damages > $2,000)||$2,109|
|Speeding Ticket (16-20 mph over speed limit)||$1,760|
It's no secret credit score is closely correlated with car insurance rates. In fact, Charleston drivers who improve their credit score from the "Very Poor" tier (300-579) to the "Exceptional" tier (800-850) earn, on average, a 58% decrease in their auto insurance costs. Moving from "Very Poor" to "Fair" credit is an important step toward saving money on auto insurance. In Charleston, improving your credit to "Fair" could help you earn a $1,224 decrease in annual car insurance rates.
|Credit Tier||Average Annual Rate|