The average cost of car insurance is $720 per year, according to WalletHub data for 2021. This means the average monthly car insurance premium is $60, though drivers may have to pay higher or lower rates based on factors such as their driving record, age, car type, and credit history.
Average Car Insurance Cost by Category
- Minimum Coverage: $716 per year
- Full Coverage: $1,997 per year
- Drivers with a Violation: $903 per year
- Young Drivers: $2,415 per year
- Senior Drivers: $734 per year
The cost of the average car insurance policy can be a good indication of how much a driver should expect to pay for coverage. But each driver’s car insurance rates depend on a variety of factors such as their driving record, age, car type, and credit history. Insurance companies use these factors to determine a driver’s risk, and high-risk drivers typically pay more for coverage.
Average Car Insurance Cost by Company
|Company||Average Annual Premium|
Average annual premiums reflect nationwide quotes for a 45-year-old driver with a clean driving record who is purchasing minimum coverage.
Each insurance company has its own algorithm for calculating premiums, so the same driver could be quoted different premiums by different insurers. As a result, drivers should always get quotes from at least three different insurers before purchasing a policy.
Average Car Insurance Cost by State
|State||Annual Cost for Minimum Coverage||Annual Cost for Full Coverage|
Average Car Insurance Cost by Violation
|Violation||Premium Increase After Infraction||Average Annual Premium|
|Red Light Infraction||23%||$879|
|Open Container Infraction||44%||$1,028|
|Reckless Driving Infraction||91%||$1.366|
|Suspended Driver’s License Infraction||101%||$1,441|
Drivers almost always pay more for auto insurance after a moving violation. The exact amount that your rates will go up depends mostly on your state and the specific infraction, but in some states your premium can rise to more than double the rate that a safe driver would pay.
You can check your driving record to see how many infractions and points you have on your license, and if you practice good habits behind the wheel, your rates will eventually go back down. It usually takes 3-5 years to improve your driving record for insurance purposes after a moving violation.
Average Car Insurance Cost by Age
|Age||Average Annual Premium|
|16 years old||$3,341|
|25 years old||$862|
|45 years old||$716|
|65 years old||$734|
Your age can affect your car insurance rates because younger drivers with less experience on the road tend to have more accidents than older, mature drivers. As a result, they also pay more for car insurance.
Premiums usually drop by 12% to 20% when a driver turns 25 years old. After that, the average driver’s rate will gradually decrease over time until they reach their seventies. At that point, costs rise once again due to the increased risk posed by senior drivers.
Average Car Insurance Cost by Car Type
|Type of Car||Average Annual Premium|
The most expensive type of car to insure is a sports car, followed by a truck. In general, the faster a car can go or the more expensive it is to repair or replace, the more its insurance will cost.
Drivers tend to assume that if a car is more expensive, it automatically costs more to insure than a cheaper car. However, this is not always the case. WalletHub’s analysis found that only 22% of the difference in insurance premiums for cars in the same category can be attributed to the cost of the car. The remaining 78% depends on other factors such as the car’s body type, make, and age, which affect how much damage a car can cause and how much it costs to repair.
Average Car Insurance Cost by Credit Score
Drivers with no credit pay about 67% more for car insurance than drivers with excellent credit, according to WalletHub’s analysis. Credit has a bigger impact in some states than others, though.
Credit data has the biggest impact on car insurance premiums in New York, New Jersey and Connecticut. On the other hand, Hawaii, California, and Massachusetts do not allow insurance companies to consider credit when calculating premiums. And in some states, like Washington, insurers cannot deny a customer or cancel a policy based solely on credit.
Insurance companies consider drivers’ credit history because it is generally correlated with their likelihood of filing an insurance claim. They do not directly use credit scores when calculating the cost of premiums, however. They do use the same underlying information, though: your credit report.
Average Car Insurance Cost by Category
|Category||Average Annual Premium|
Ask The Experts
To gain more insight about average car insurance cost, WalletHub posed the following questions to a panel of experts. Click on the experts below to view their bios and answers.
1. Why have car insurance premiums been increasing over the past years?
2. How can drivers lower their average car insurance costs?
3. Why do some groups pay so much more for car insurance than others?
4. Can insurers really save drivers as much on their average car insurance costs as they advertise?