No, car insurance in Maryland is not cheaper than in Virginia. Virginia car insurance rates are an average of $465 per year cheaper than Maryland car insurance, in part because Virginia has lower minimum coverage requirements.
Average Monthly Cost of Car Insurance in Maryland vs. Virginia
Car insurance in Virginia is actually not very expensive compared to the national average, thanks to a saturated, competitive insurance market and low prices for auto repair. In Virginia, you can expect to pay approximately $3,445 per year for full coverage car insurance or $1,260 per year for minimum coverage. Car insurance in Virginia is less expensive than the national average, which is around $2,000 annually for … read full answerfull coverage and about $700 per year for minimum coverage.
The cost of car insurance is steadily increasing, too, both in Virginia and nationwide. As the cost of providing insurance goes up, the premiums insurers charge also rise. All insured drivers share the increasing cost of insurance. That is why your rates tend to go up every time your policy is renewed, regardless of whether any individual factors—like your driving record or location—have changed.
There are several unique reasons why car insurance goes up every year in Virginia, too, even if your details remain the same.
Top Reasons Car Insurance Is Expensive in Virginia
People in Virginia are driving more. As a result, the number of accidents, claims, and payouts is rising, too. For example, there were approximately 796 fatal crashes in 2020 in Virginia, versus 712 fatal crashes in 2015.
Auto repairs are getting more expensive. Vehicles today cost more to repair due to the added technology and features. For example, a National Association of Insurance Commissioners study found that the average cost of vehicle repairs was around 8% higher in 2018 than it was in 2014.
People in Virginia drive uninsured. As the cost of car insurance continues to rise, more drivers take the risk of driving without car insurance. In 2019, 11% of drivers lacked even minimum liability insurance in Virginia. The cost of uninsured drivers is passed on to consumers through higher premiums.
Healthcare in Virginia is getting more expensive. Car insurance companies are hit hardest when paying out claims involving medical bills, and it’s not getting any cheaper. Healthcare spending increases by an average of 6.5% every year in Virginia.
Virginia is experiencing more severe weather. In Virginia, weather events like severe storms, serious winter weather, and tropical cyclones are becoming increasingly common. These weather events cause insurers to pay out a higher number of claims, which tend to be more expensive and less predictable. As a result, they have to raise rates to keep pace.
However, there could be other issues elevating your rates.
If your driving record is clean and your rates are still high, your car insurance might be expensive because of your:
Age. Drivers under 25 and older than 65 pay more for auto coverage because they are statistically more likely to be involved in serious and fatal accidents. In Virginia, 16-year-old drivers pay an average of $2,748 per year, 25-year-old drivers pay an average of $757 per year, and people over 65 pay an average of $610 per year.
Location and driving patterns. Population-dense cities have higher premiums than rural areas because city living usually means more accidents, more property crime, and more frequent claims. In Virginia, the most expensive locations for insurance are Woodlawn, Burke, and Norfolk. You can also expect rates to change based on your driving patterns—long commutes or regular driving in high-risk areas can cost you.
Financial responsibility. In Virginia, drivers with no credit pay 72% more on their premiums than drivers with excellent credit. You can also demonstrate financial responsibility by maintaining minimum car insurance with no gaps in coverage. Letting your coverage lapse could result in a higher rate when you get your next policy.
Claims history. Numerous recent claims can drive up your premiums. That's one reason why it sometimes makes sense to pay out of pocket rather than file a claim, especially if a claim won’t get you much more than your deductible.
How to Get Cheaper Car Insurance in Virginia
Multiple factors affect the cost of car insurance. Some things you can’t control, but you do have a say in most of the contributing factors. Driving safely, obeying traffic laws, and keeping a clean driving record are the best ways to keep your insurance costs down.
Other than that, the best way to lower your car insurance costs is to compare rates from at least three insurance companies. Ideally, you should check your rates every 6-12 months, when you renew your policy. But at a minimum, be sure to check your record and shop for rates every three to five years, since you may be able to get a lower rate if a traffic violation falls off your record.
In Virginia, the most expensive policies cost roughly $3,042 per year, and the least expensive coverage costs around $696 per year, when all driver profile information is the same. That means you could save as much as $2,346 simply by shopping around. Be sure to confirm you’re getting all the discounts you’re eligible for, too.
The best way to get cheaper car insurance is to compare quotes from multiple companies and then switch to whichever insurer offers the coverage you want at the cheapest rate. Other ways to get cheaper car insurance include taking advantage of discounts, improving your driving record, and raising your credit score.… read full answer
10 Ways to Get Cheaper Car Insurance
1. Compare quotes every 6-12 months.
Every car insurance company calculates premiums slightly differently, so the quote you get from one company can easily be hundreds of dollars more expensive than another company’s quote. Getting quotes from multiple insurers every time you need to renew your policy can help you realize if you’re overpaying for the same amount of coverage.
2. Take advantage of discounts.
All major car insurance companies offer a variety of discounts, which can save drivers as much as 35% in some cases. For instance, many insurers offer multi-policy and multi-car discounts, as well as good student and good driver discounts, and more.
3. Increase your deductible.
Raising your deductible will lower your premium, though it’s important to choose a deductible amount that you can afford in an emergency. A car insurance deductible is an amount that you have to pay out of pocket before your insurer will cover the rest. Deductibles apply to several types of coverage, including collision and comprehensive insurance.
Usage-based insurance is a type of car insurance that calculates your premium based on your driving habits. Each company’s usage-based program varies, but most consider your total mileage, braking, acceleration, and speed. These programs are ideal for safe drivers, especially those who do not use their cars for long commutes or frequent trips.
6. Choose a car that is inexpensive to insure.
Cars that are particularly fast, powerful, and/or costly to repair are among the most expensive to insure. Insurers also charge higher premiums for cars that are more likely to be stolen. The next time you go car shopping, compare insurance quotes for different models in advance with this in mind. And if your premiums are prohibitively expensive now, consider trading in your vehicle for a car that is cheap to insure.
7. Take a defensive driving course.
In some states, insurance companies are required to give you a discount for completing a defensive driving course. Even where it isn't mandatory, insurers will sometimes provide a discount to encourage customers to improve their driving techniques.
If your insurer does not lower your premium just for taking a course, working on your driving skills will still pay off in the long run and help you keep your record clean. On that note, certain states also allow you to take a course in order to prevent driver’s license points from affecting your car insurance rates.
8. Consider your coverage types and amounts.
All the different types of car insurance can make it difficult to determine what exactly is worth paying for. At a minimum, you need to fulfill your state’s requirements and also purchase any coverage your lender or lessor requires. But beyond that, you can weigh whether each add-on coverage option is worth the price.
Moving violations like speeding tickets signal to your insurer that you are a risky driver, as do serious convictions like reckless driving. By driving safely, you can keep yourself safe and your premium low. If you have tickets or at-fault accidents on your driving record already, work on driving carefully from now on, since they will only affect your rate for a few years.
10. Check out local and regional companies.
Large car insurance companies spend billions on advertising every year, but smaller insurers may be able to provide the cheapest premiums in some cases. So, when you’re shopping around, make sure to compare quotes from companies of all sizes. You can use WalletHub’s cheap car insurance guide as a starting point. Just click on your state to compare the cheapest insurers.
Car insurance premiums are based on drivers’ individual risk factors as well as the coverage types and limits they choose. Check out WalletHub's full guide on the factors that affect car insurance rates for more information.
Common reasons for high car insurance costs include your driving record, age, coverage options, where you live, the car you drive, your credit history or not taking advantage of discounts. The average car insurance premium has also become more expensive as it increased by more than 50% in the past 10 years.… read full answer
8 Reasons Why Your Car Insurance Is So Expensive
1. You Have a Poor Driving Record
Your driving record is probably the most important factor in determining your car insurance rates. If your record is poor, with accidents and driving violations, and you have a history of claims, your rates will be high. You will also pay more than average if you’re bad with credit, young (especially young and male), or unmarried.
2. Your Vehicle Is Expensive to Insure
Insurance companies like safe, boring cars that nobody wants to steal for joy-riding or parts. If you choose to drive something large, fast, luxurious, statistically unsafe on the road, or popular with thieves, you will pay more.
3. You Live in a High-Risk Location
Where you live has a large impact on your premiums. Some areas of the country have much higher insurance costs than others. A number of factors go into this, such as the history of accidents in the area, population density, the number of uninsured drivers, crime statistics, bad weather patterns, etc. Also, if you live far from work and have a long daily commute, the high annual mileage could raise your rate.
4. You Have High Coverage Amounts
If your coverage limits are high and your deductibles are low, you will be happy if you need to make a claim, but not as happy when you’re paying your premiums. If the insurance company risks having to pay out more in the future, you will have to pay more now.
5. You Are Not Taking Advantage of Discounts
Insurers offer a very wide variety of discounts. Valued customer discounts offer savings for things like loyalty, multiple cars and policies, and paying online. Driver discounts may apply if you are a good driver, good student, belong to a certain profession or organization, are married, or more. Your car may also qualify for a discount if it has equipment that makes it safer to drive or harder to steal. Discounts are available to nearly everyone, and you may qualify for some that you aren’t getting credit for yet.
6. You Are Too Young or Too Old
Teens are statistically more likely to cause car accidents than the average driver, so insurance companies charge them the highest premiums. Drivers who get their license at 16 years old usually see their premiums decrease with every year of experience, however, and age 25 is generally considered a turning point when premiums become considerably lower.
Experienced drivers in their 40s and 50s are often the cheapest to insure. But rates begin to rise again after age 65.
7. You Have a Low Insurance Score
Every major insurance company uses a credit-based insurance score to calculate premiums where allowed by law. Like credit scores, insurance scores are based on credit report information, only they are used to predict a driver’s likelihood of filing a claim. The rationale is that individuals who are careful with their money tend to be careful drivers, too.
However, insurance scores are controversial, so they are banned in Massachusetts, Hawaii, and California. Most other states also have restrictions on their use, which can be found on the state insurance regulator’s website.
8. Costs Increasing Overall
Record-setting natural disasters, more phone-related car accidents, high rates of insurance fraud, and expensive-to-repair car technology have all increased costs for insurance companies. As a result, insurers have been raising their prices to cover their expenses.
From 2010 to 2019, the average cost of car insurance increased by more than 50%. Prices have gone up every year. This steady rise in insurance costs has outstripped other consumer costs. Even skyrocketing hospital costs lag slightly behind car insurance.
Overall Cost Increases from 2010 to 2019
Car Insurance: 52.2%
Hospital Services: 49.1%
Cost of Living: 17.2%
Physician’s Fees: 15.7%
You can’t reverse this industry-wide inflation. But if you want to lower your own insurance costs, address as many of your personal factors as you can. Then get quotes from multiple insurance companies and compare.
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