A 17-year-old can get their own car insurance in most states. Most states require a parent to grant legal written permission for anyone under 18 to buy a car or insurance, however. In some states, a 17-year-old must also have a parent listed on the car’s title, registration and insurance. A few states set a minimum age for sole ownership of a car but let insurance companies decide whether a parent or guardian must co-sign the insurance policy.
If you are a minor and want to own and insure a vehicle, you should check with your state's department of motor vehicles to see if your state has a minimum age for car ownership. Also ask about extra measures you may need to take to register and insure a car until you turn 18.
Keep in mind that having your own policy will be expensive. The average cost of an individual policy for a 17-year-old is over $5,500 per year—more than three times the average amount paid by drivers over 25. Be sure to get multiple quotes, from companies like GEICO and Progressive that offer good rates for young drivers. If you are living at home or attending school, also consider talking with your parents about the pros and cons of being covered on their policy instead. It would be much cheaper.
The cost of car insurance typically goes down the most between the ages of 18 and 19, when rates drop by about 25% on average. Car insurance premiums generally continue to go down each year until age 25, when rates begin to level off for the next few decades. When drivers turn 25 years old, they can expect a discount of about 14%.… read full answer
Note: The table above shows average annual rates for minimum coverage across all 50 states.
Around middle age, rates may begin to creep back up. This is because middle-aged drivers tend to insure newer, nicer cars and begin to add their children to the policy, increasing the average rate for this age range overall. Individual rates also start to go up again between the ages of 65 and 75 because senior drivers have a higher risk of accidents than middle-aged drivers.
Why Age Affects Car Insurance
Age affects car insurance rates because it’s an indicator of a driver’s risk to an insurance company. Young drivers are statistically more likely to get into a car accident than older, more experienced drivers. As a result, they’re considered high-risk and are more expensive to insure.
The risk for the insurer and the cost for the insured then generally decline as drivers age and gain experience. Once drivers pass the age of 65, however, their risk starts to go up again. Not only are senior drivers more likely to get into an accident than middle-aged drivers, but they’re also more likely to be injured as a result.
States Where Age Does Not Affect Rates
Although most people in the U.S. will find their prices change according to this timeline, there are a few states in which insurers can’t use age to determine your rate. In California, Hawaii, and Massachusetts, age won’t have a direct effect on how much you pay for car insurance. Other factors will still have an impact, though. Your driving record, credit score, and marital status can all affect your final premium.
The average cost of car insurance for a teenager is $215 per month, or $2,580 annually. Younger teens typically pay the most for car insurance coverage, with 16-year-olds paying an average of 85% more than 19-year-olds.
Average Cost of Car Insurance for Teenagers by Age
Teenagers are more expensive to insure than older, more mature drivers because they’re more likely to be involved in an accident, which makes them high-risk. In fact, teen drivers are nearly three times as likely to be involved in a fatal car accident as drivers over the age of 20, according to the CDC. Teenage boys are even more expensive to insure than teenage girls, paying an average of 10% more for coverage.
How to Lower the Cost of Teenage Car Insurance
Even though car insurance is typically expensive for teenagers, there are still ways to lower the cost of covering a young driver. One of the best ways to reduce the cost of teen car insurance is to add them to an existing policy rather than have them purchase their own policy. Adding a teen to a policy raises rates by an average of $1,461 per year, but it’s still cheaper than the cost of a separate policy. Also, look for discounts that are specifically for young drivers, like good-student and student-away-at-school discounts.
If your teen does need to purchase their own policy, they should compare quotes from at least three different insurers in order to find the best deal. The cheapest car insurance companies for teens are Travelers, USAA, and Progressive, according to WalletHub’s analysis.
Car insurance for an 18-year-old costs $2,415 per year, on average, or $201 per month. Eighteen-year-old drivers pay more for car insurance than older, more experienced drivers because insurers consider them to be high-risk, meaning they’re more likely to file a claim.
Because the cost of coverage for 18-year-olds is so high, it’s important to shop around for multiple quotes before buying a policy. Some of the best car insurance companies for 18-year-old drivers are … read full answerTravelers, USAA and Mercury.
Cost of Car Insurance for an 18-Year-Old by Company
The exact cost of car insurance for an 18-year-old depends on a few factors, including their driving record, gender, and vehicle type. Additionally, whether an 18-year-old is buying their own policy or being added to their parents’ policy makes a difference.
Adding an 18-year-old to an existing policy will raise the premium by an average of 140% to 160%. But even with the added cost, it’s still a more cost-effective option than having the driver purchase their own policy.
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