If you’re planning to buy a new car, you’ve probably already considered things such as styling, comfort, features and fuel economy. But you might be missing a big part of your vehicle’s total ownership if you haven’t considered auto insurance costs. This article from Forbes has the details.
If one were to believe the sheer volume of television commercials being broadcast to that end, we are a culture that’s obsessed with our car insurance rates. GEICO alone reportedly spent nearly $2 Billion last year telling a rapt nation it could save money in a manner of minutes by switching carriers.
And while most of us would rather leave money in our pockets than on the proverbial table, other than shopping our business among competing companies, fine-tuning our policies and choosing a vehicle that’s inherently cheaper to insure, there’s little we can usually do to alter the intractable factors that more profoundly affect our annual premiums.
These include one’s age, marital status, address, credit rating and driving record. Among them the one consideration that’s firmly within one’s control is where he or she lives. All else being equal, someone residing in a crowded and crime-ridden urban area can expect to pay considerably more for coverage than will a similar motorist with the same car in a quiet suburb of the same city.
“Your driving record and your car are the same no matter where you live,” says Insure.com consumer analyst Penny Gusner. “But change your ZIP code just a couple of towns the wrong way and your rates can double.”
Even if you already live rather remotely, it’s possible to come out considerably ahead by simply moving across one or more state borders. According to Insure.com, those living in Maine, Ohio and Idaho will, on average, pay a third less than the national average to insure a new car, while Michigan motorists face premiums that are 90 percent higher than the norm. The spread between the cheapest (Maine, at $805) and costliest state (Michigan, at $2,662) amounts to a whopping $9,285 over a typical five-year ownership period.
“Laws make a big difference. Each state makes its own rules, and some of them result in bigger or more frequent insurance claims,” Gusner explains, noting that widespread insurance fraud, high theft rates and a higher concentration of drivers in urban areas also contribute to how much residents in a given state will pay for coverage.
Here’s the list of 10 states Insure.com identifies as offering the lowest average auto insurance rates:
New Hampshire: $905
North Carolina: $986
New York: $1,013
And here’s the 10 states where motorists tend to endure the costliest car insurance premiums:
District of Columbia: $1,799
West Virginia: $1,716
Rhode Island: $1,656
New Jersey: $1,595
Click here for the complete list of average car insurance rates for all 50 states.
The Fine Print: Data on premiums for the survey was compiled by Quadrant Information Services based on auto insurance rates for 2015 models from six large carriers – Allstate, Farmers, GEICO, Nationwide, Progressive and State Farm – in 10 ZIP codes per state. State averages are based on quoted rates for the cheapest-to-insure versions of the 20 best-selling vehicles in the U.S. Estimates assume a single, 40-year-old male with a clean driving record and good credit who commutes 12 miles to work each day, with policy limits of 100/300/50 ($100,000 for injury liability for one person, $300,000 for all injuries and $50,000 for property damage in an accident) and a $500 deductible on collision and comprehensive coverage. As they say, your rates will vary.
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