Jeffrey Johnson is a legal writer with a focus on personal injury. He has worked on personal injury and sovereign immunity litigation in addition to experience in family, estate, and criminal law. He earned a J.D. from the University of Baltimore and has worked in legal offices and non-profits in Maryland, Texas, and North Carolina. He has also earned an MFA in screenwriting from Chapman Univer...

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Laura Walker graduated college with a BS in Criminal Justice with a minor in Political Science. She married her husband and began working in the family insurance business in 2005. She became a licensed agent and wrote P&C business focusing on personal lines insurance. Laura serviced existing business and wrote new business. She now uses her insurance background to help educate drivers about...

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Reviewed by Laura Walker
Licensed Agent for 10 Years

UPDATED: Jul 8, 2021

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The average auto insurance rates in the United States range from $644 in the state of Iowa to $1285 in the state of New Jersey.

Ironically, the amount in New Jersey is almost twice as much, for the same level of coverage. This information can be found by visiting the National Association of Insurance Commissioners.

To find out what your auto insurance rates can be, enter your ZIP code into the FREE tool right now!

As you can see, car insurance rates vary greatly throughout the United States, especially when reviewing the costs people pay in larger states with huge metropolitan areas.

As Iowa is considered a rural, farm state, the rates are much lower than they are for residents of New Jersey.

However, Iowa is not the only state with extremely low car insurance premiums. Idaho, Wisconsin, North and South Dakota all issue car insurance premiums that average less than $700 per year.

When you start looking for coverage, it may be better for you to place your focus on the average premium auto insurance rates in your state, rather than the national average since they are so different.

It is important for you to understand how your specific state calculates the rates so you have the proper expectations.

The Most Expensive Auto Insurance Rates

Next to New Jersey, there are 13 other states with average annual premiums over $1000; of the 13, 9 are located on the East Coast. They include:

  • Alaska – $1134
  • Arizona – $1047
  • Connecticut – $1080
  • Delaware – $1115
  • District of Columbia – $1316
  • Florida – $1153
  • Louisiana – $1255
  • Maryland – $1036
  • Massachusetts – $1124
  • Michigan – $1068
  • Nevada – $1137
  • New York – $1213
  • Rhode Island – $1198

Of course, the major factor is location, but car insurance companies also take other factors into consideration. This includes the average annual salary of the residents, the higher cost of living and the amount of daily traffic.

Areas with high-crime and auto theft also contribute to higher car insurance rates.

If you reside in a state that typically charges more for car insurance than others do, there are many ways to ensure that you receive a fair and comparable quote. Do your homework and research the available discounts.

You should also educate yourself on the laws of your state so you have the correct level of coverage, without selecting something you really do not need.

Every state in the U.S. requires liability coverage, or in New Hampshire the ability to prove you can pay for damages caused. If your motor vehicle is registered with the Department of Motor Vehicles, you must have car insurance to operate your car in accordance with the law I 49 states.

Failure to secure the appropriate level of insurance can have serious implications; you may even lose your driver’s license.

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Other Ways to Protect Yourself when Purchasing Car Insurance

After you confirm your amount of coverage, you will need to stay current with any new laws that can affect you. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is a great resource.

You can find out about all of the latest information regarding driving and vehicle safety and you can find excellent tips.

If you purchased a car recently and the vehicle is being financed, you must have liability plus comprehensive and collision. This is sometimes called full coverage auto insurance because it takes care of minor scrapes and total losses.

You should inquire about GAP or Guaranteed Auto Protection Insurance; this is something most car dealers offer on brand new vehicles to cover the balance of the loan.

If your new car is stolen or totaled beyond repair, your standard car insurance will not protect you from your responsibility to the finance company. They will still seek out a judgment against you if fail to continue paying and the account defaults.

While this may seem harsh, it is a reality and you must know how to prevent additional costs from ruining you financially.

Be a Smart Shopper

Whether you are looking to switch car insurance providers or you are new to the process, you need to be smart. You need to know what car insurance companies are looking at when they review your application so you get the best deal possible.

Most people already know the standards, like location, age, and type of vehicle. However, many car insurance companies are beginning to look into other areas including the number of claims you have processed over the years.

All insurance companies are required to report each auto claim to a database that collects the information and stores it for future reference. You have access to this information as a consumer and should review from time to time.

Just as your credit history affects your finances your claim history affects your car insurance rates.

Today is the day to find your perfect auto insurance quote. Use the FREE ZIP code tool right now!

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