Car Insurance Comparison: Michigan vs. California

Planning a move from Michigan to California? Remember to update your car insurance.

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Comparing auto insurance in Michigan and California

If you’re moving from Michigan to California, chances are you're assessing the major concerns and big expenses: contracting a reliable long-distance moving service, finding a house or apartment in your new state, and arranging your interstate move.

With so many moving parts, it can be easy to overlook the details. Car insurance is often just an afterthought, but it's important. To find a cheap rate and stay street legal, plan to reevaluate your policy — or purchase a new policy — when you move between states.

Read our guide to car insurance in Michigan and California to learn more about how to make your move as easy as possible. We'll cover the following topics:


  1. Insurance rate comparison
  2. Insurance rates by coverage level
  3. Cheap companies by state
  4. Rates in major cities
  5. Additional resources

Michigan vs. California car insurance — average rates

You should expect to pay less for auto coverage in your new state. The usual annual car insurance rate in California is $988 less expensive than the typical cost of car insurance in Michigan. The exact cost will depend on your coverage level, driving and insurance history, and your auto insurance company.


CAR INSURANCE RATES IN MICHIGAN VS. CALIFORNIA
State Average Annual Price
Michigan $2,694
California $1,707

Auto insurance rates by coverage tier

The amount you pay for car insurance coverage depends on how you use your vehicle and what level of coverage you desire.

If you elect your state's minimum liability auto insurance coverage, you’ll most likely carry bodily injury, medical payment, and property damage liability coverages, in addition to underinsured and uninsured motorist coverage and personal injury protection in certain states.


AUTO INSURANCE PREMIUMS — STATE MINIMUM COVERAGE IN MICHIGAN vs. CALIFORNIA
State Time Period Premium
Michigan Annual $1,368
California Annual $573
Michigan 6-Month $684
California 6-Month $286
Michigan Monthly $114
California Monthly $48

Choosing full-coverage auto insurance will cost more each month, but you’ll get the peace of mind that comes with comprehensive and collision coverages, plus perks like rental reimbursement and roadside assistance. The primary benefit of full coverage is that it covers your vehicle and you more comprehensively than does basic coverage. If you want to go the extra mile to protect your investment, consider full coverage.


CAR INSURANCE RATES — FULL COVERAGE IN MICHIGAN vs. CALIFORNIA
State Time Period Cost
Michigan Annual $2,336
California Annual $1,626
Michigan 6-Month $1,168
California 6-Month $813
Michigan Monthly $195
California Monthly $135

Affordable car insurance companies in Michigan and California

A major determinant of your auto insurance costs is your choice of insurer. Auto insurance companies set rates in a variety of ways, resulting in major price variations. Geography matters, too: some insurance companies sell policies only in certain places, while major insurance companies shift rates by state.

When moving, you should look to find the best cheap auto insurance company in your new state. Get started below by viewing the five most affordable car insurance companies in Michigan and California.


AFFORDABLE CAR INSURANCE COMPANIES IN MICHIGAN
Car Insurance Company Average Annual Rate
SAFECO $368
USAA $968
GEICO $1,013
MetLife $1,337
Chubb $1,400

See additional affordable auto insurance companies in Michigan.


AFFORDABLE CAR INSURANCE COMPANIES IN CALIFORNIA
Company Average Annual Rate
USAA $1,132
Wawanesa $1,169
Century National $1,202
CSAA $1,210
Nationwide $1,238

View other affordable auto insurance companies in California.


Car insurance rates by city in Michigan and California

Though car insurance is legislated by states, insurance companies assign rates by ZIP code to account for location-specific factors such as density and the likelihood of a crash. The exact location to which you relocate will play a major role in deciding your premiums.

Reference the below tables to see car insurance rates in major cities in California and Michigan.


CAR INSURANCE RATES BY CITY IN MICHIGAN
City Average Annual Rate
Detroit $4,911
Grand Rapids $2,230
Warren $3,356
Sterling Heights $2,984
Lansing $2,415

Check out a longer list of insurance rates in Michigan cities here.


AUTO INSURANCE RATES BY CITY IN CALIFORNIA
City Average Annual Rate
Los Angeles $2,125
San Diego $1,354
San Jose $1,409
San Francisco $1,728
Fresno $1,487

Looking for another city's data? View rates in other California cities here.


More resources:moving from Michigan to California

When you pack up and move from Michigan to California, you will face new driving laws, different FR-44 or SR-22 requirements, and more. Make sure your move runs smoothly with The Zebra's data on your new home:

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Ross MartinManager, Content Quality

As a licensed insurance agent, Ross has spent the last three years with The Zebra researching and writing insurance content aimed at helping shoppers make informed decisions.

Ross's background is in writing and education. He holds a master's degree from Royal Holloway, University of London.

Ross's work has been cited by The New York Times, Investopedia, The Simple DollarThe BalanceCar and Driver and Fox Business. He has been quoted by CNET, I Drive Safely and Kin Insurance

About The Zebra

The Zebra is not an insurance company. We publish data-backed, expert-reviewed resources to help consumers make more informed insurance decisions.

  • The Zebra’s insurance content is written and reviewed for accuracy by licensed insurance agents.

  • The Zebra’s insurance content is not subject to review or alteration by insurance companies or partners.

  • The Zebra’s editorial team operates independently of the company’s partnerships and commercialization interests, publishing unbiased information for consumer benefit.

  • The auto insurance rates published on The Zebra’s pages are based on a comprehensive analysis of car insurance pricing data, evaluating more than 83 million insurance rates from across the United States.