Car insurance rates by state

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How where you live impacts auto insurance rates

 

One of the primary factors used in car insurance pricing is location. Average car insurance rates by state may vary based on legal regulations and insurance companies’ efforts to price accurately based on these differences.

For instance, drivers in no-fault states such as Michigan and Florida often pay more for insurance than do drivers in other areas of the country. Dive into the details and compare auto insurance rates by state below!

 

What are the cheapest states for car insurance?

The states with the most affordable car insurance rates are Maine, North Carolina, and Virginia. Each of these East Coast states boasts average annual auto insurance rates that are more than 53% lower than the national average of $1,548. Despite this, drivers in Maine, Virginia and North Carolina endured year-over-year insurance rate increases. The state that saw the largest decrease in average insurance rates this year was Texas, at 23%.

 

10 CHEAPEST STATES FOR AUTO INSURANCE

State

2020 Average Annual Rate

Change vs. 2019 Rate

Maine

$935

+4.39%

North Carolina

$954

+0.82%

Virginia

$1,005

+9.52%

New Hampshire

$1,037

-6.11%

Hawaii

$1,045

-3.31%

Ohio

$1,046

+1.45%

Iowa

$1,106

+11.98%

Vermont

$1,155

+7.51%

Idaho

$1,164

+14.35%

Indiana

$1,164

+1.28%

National average

$1,548

+5.31%

 

In general, less-dense states — and those with drivers qualifying as low-risk — enjoy the cheapest car insurance rates. Many of America’s most affordable car insurance states are low-density locales such as Idaho, Utah, Maine, Vermont, and Iowa. The cheapest US region for car insurance is New England ($1,305 per year), followed closely by the Great Plains ($1,449). 

 

What are the most expensive states for car insurance?

The states with the highest auto insurance rates are Michigan, Louisiana, and Florida. Two of these states — Michigan and Florida — are no-fault car insurance states, meaning every driver involved in an incident pays for their own injuries and damages.

In states with no-fault laws, car insurance companies raise rates to account for the added financial risk they bear. Louisiana’s rates are atypically expensive due to its high number of uninsured drivers and its tendency to sustain damages via floods and hurricanes.

 

10 MOST EXPENSIVE STATES FOR AUTO INSURANCE

State

2020 Average Annual Rate

Change vs. 2019 Rate

National average

$1,548

+5.31%

Colorado

$1,757

+4.48%

Oklahoma

$1,786

+14.55%

Delaware

$1,802

-1.37%

California

$1,868

+2.92%

Nevada

$1,973

+3.06%

Rhode Island

$2,102

-0.35%

Kentucky

$2,208

+16.35%

Florida

$2,309

+12.15%

Louisiana

$2,378

+1.7%

Michigan

$3,096

+14.97%

 

Delaware and Rhode Island drivers were among the lucky few Americans to receive a small price break on insurance over the past year, while others faced increases by as much as over 16%. Colorado and Oklahoma made their first appearances among the most expensive states, supplanting Texas and New York from the previous year. 

The priciest US region for auto insurance was the Far West, with California and Nevada among the most expensive states.

Many elements lead to a state’s average insurance rates being expensive, with key factors including:

  • No-fault insurance laws
  • Large numbers of uninsured drivers
  • High numbers of claims (via the number of vehicles on the road or natural disasters)

Car insurance rates are set based on a variety of rating factors, including age, gender, profession, driving history, credit score, coverage level, and specific location.

 

How to handle car insurance when moving to a new state

If you’re moving from one state to another, car insurance might be low on your list of logistical issues. However, if you want to carry continuous coverage — and stay insured against the threat of costly damages — you need to modify your auto insurance when moving, whether in- or out-of-state.

 

A guide to car insurance and moving between states

You'll need to update your car insurance policy when moving for two reasons: state regulations and location-specific pricing.

 

State insurance laws

If you’re moving from one state to another, you must update your car insurance policy. Because car insurance is regulated at the state level, your policy needs to be written to accommodate the laws in your new home state.

If you were to move from California to Texas, your insurance coverage requirements would change quite a bit. California has minimum coverage levels of $15,000 per person (bodily injury coverage), $30,000 per accident (bodily injury coverage), and $5,000 per property damage accident. Texas’ minimum coverage levels are much higher: $30,000 per person and $60,000 per accident for bodily injury coverage, and $25,000 for total property damage.

StateAverage Annual Premium w/ State Minimum Coverage
California$592
Texas$747

Due largely to the difference in coverage requirements, the difference between premiums in California and Texas is more than $150 per year.

Additionally, your premiums and insurance policies may change if you move to or from a no-fault state. No-fault insurance requires that all drivers pay for their own medical bills associated with any claim. While damages to your vehicle or property are covered by the at-fault party, any bodily injury losses would not. In theory, this eases the burden on small claims courts and the healthcare system.

If you move to a no-fault state, you’ll be required to add personal injury protection. Personal injury protection (PIP) provides coverage for medical expenses and work loss protection for you and your passengers— regardless of fault. The amount of PIP coverage required varies by state.

The following states are no-fault: Florida, Hawaii, Kansas, *Kentucky, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, New Jersey, *New York, North Dakota, *Pennsylvania and *Utah.

*In Kentucky, New York, Utah, and Pennsylvania, you may elect to participate in no-fault coverage.

 

Location-specific car insurance pricing

The pricing system of car insurance makes it imperative to update your policy when moving — whether you're planning an inter- or intrastate move. Your auto insurance premium is made up of myriad factors, including your location — down to your zip code. Location is a primary rating factor, meaning it goes a long way toward determining your rate.

Living near a coastline or beach can raise your rates, as your vehicle could be more susceptible to flooding or hurricane damage. This is also true for areas with higher population densities, as you’re more likely to get into an accident in these areas.

 


 

How to change car insurance when moving out of state

This process may change depending on the state to which you're moving. If you move to a state in which your current insurance company writes policies, the simplest option is to call a representative at your car insurance company and have a new policy written for your new state.

However, this isn’t always the cheapest solution. Even if you maintain a policy with the same company, your rates are likely to change, for better or worse. Your best option is to shop around and get car insurance quotes prior to your move, finding the company with the cheapest insurance rates in your new location.

Even if looking for a new car insurance policy isn’t very high on your moving to-do list, it’s still hugely important. If you’re looking to save time and energy in this process, have the following ready before you start shopping.

  • Personal information of all drivers: including driver's licenses, date of birth, and residence — if different from yours.
  • Your address in your new state
  • Driving history of all drivers on the policy
  • Desired insurance coverage
  • Insurance history
  • Average annual mileage
  • Vehicle information: this includes the vehicle identification number, date of purchase, and if the vehicle is leased or owned

This won’t be all the information you need to get a quote, but it will help give you the most accurate rates as quickly as possible.

If you’re moving within your state, you will still need to update your car insurance. As we stated, car insurance is priced by zip code, so even moving to a new neighborhood can impact rates. Be sure to call your insurance provider and give them your new address.

 


 

How to update your registration when moving states

Vehicle registration is handled through each state's department of motor vehicles (DMV). In many cases, you can submit your driver’s license, proof of insurance, and vehicle title information to the DMV online. From there, your state-specific plates and registration documents will be mailed to you.

Changing your registration could be a more involved process, depending on your state's rules. Check your new state’s DMV page for details and required documentation.

 


 

Additional resources and methodology

The big takeaway for car insurance when moving from one state to another is to shop around and compare rates. Because your rates will be impacted by different rating factors in your new state (such as coverage and claims history), you will have a different premium and an entirely new policy. Use this opportunity to shop around with as many different auto insurance companies as possible. 

 

State comparisons for auto insurance rates

AZ vs. FLFL vs. CAIL vs. TXNJ vs. CAOR vs. WA
AZ vs. TXFL vs. COIL vs. WINJ vs. FLPA vs. CA
CA vs. AZFL vs. GAKY vs. CANJ vs. NCPA vs. FL
CA vs. IDFL vs. NCMA vs. CANJ vs. PATX vs. AK
CA vs. NVFL vs. TXMA vs. FLNY vs. CATX vs. CO
CA vs. ORGA vs. CAMI vs. AZNY vs. COTX vs. NJ
CA vs. TXGA vs. TXMI vs. CANY vs. FLTX vs. OR
CO vs. CAIL vs. AZMI vs. CONY vs. NJTX vs. WA
CT vs. CAIL vs. FLMI vs. FLNY vs. TXVA vs. CA
CT vs. FLIL vs. INMI vs. TXOR vs. AZVA vs. FL

 

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the Last Frontier

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Arkansas

the Natural State

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Delaware

the First State

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Hawaii

the Aloha State

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Idaho

the Gem State

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Maine

the Pine Tree State

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Map of Maryland Car Insurance

Maryland

the Old Line State

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Mississippi

the Magnolia State

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Montana

the Treasure State

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Nebraska

the Cornhusker State

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Map of New Hampshire Car Insurance
Map of New Jersey Car Insurance
Map of New Mexico Car Insurance
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North Dakota

the Peace Garden State

Map of Ohio Car Insurance
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Map of Oregon Car Insurance
Map of Pennsylvania Car Insurance
Map of Rhode Island Car Insurance

Rhode Island

the Ocean State

Map of South Carolina Car Insurance
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South Dakota

the Mount Rushmore State

Map of Tennessee Car Insurance
Map of Texas Car Insurance
Map of Utah Car Insurance
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Vermont

the Green Mountain State

Top Cities
Burlington
Essex
South Burlington
Colchester
Rutland
Map of Virginia Car Insurance
Map of Washington Car Insurance
Map of West Virginia Car Insurance

West Virginia

the Mountain State

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Wyoming

the Equality or Cowboy State

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Map of Washington D.C. Car Insurance

Washington, D.C.

The Nation's Capital