The words "cheap" and "auto insurance" probably shouldn't be used together, in particular when shopping around for the best car insurance for first-time drivers. Because it's not cheap, let's go over a few of the factors that have an effect on car insurance prices, and come up with some ideas to reduce the cost of the next policy you buy.
The vehicle that is being insured is probably the most important factor when comparing low-cost car insurance for first-time drivers. Vehicles with lots of horsepower, poor crash test ratings, or high incidents of liability claims will cost more to insure than more modest models.
The table below outlines coverage premiums for a selection of the cheaper automobiles to buy insurance for.
|Make and Model||Estimated Cost for Full Coverage|
|Ford Escape XLS 2WD||$5,528|
|Honda CR-V LX 4WD||$5,537|
|Hyundai Elantra SE Touring Station Wagon||$5,918|
|Toyota Tacoma 4WD||$6,213|
|Honda Odyssey EX||$6,497|
|Chevrolet Impala LS||$6,506|
|Chevrolet Silverado LT Extended Cab 4WD||$6,550|
|Toyota RAV4 Limited 4WD||$6,555|
|Dodge Grand Caravan Hero||$6,550|
|Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo 4WD||$6,560|
|Chevrolet Equinox LT AWD||$6,550|
|Chevrolet Malibu Hybrid||$6,559|
|Volkswagen Jetta S 4-Dr Sedan||$6,550|
|Toyota Camry LE||$6,558|
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Prices above based on single male driver age 16, no speeding tickets, no at-fault accidents, $1,000 deductibles, and North Carolina minimum liability limits. Discounts applied include claim-free, and safe-driver. Table data does not factor in garaging location in Charlotte, NC which can revise price quotes greatly.
Looking at the numbers, you can figure that models like the Ford Escape, Honda CR-V, Hyundai Elantra, Toyota Prius, and Toyota Tacoma will definitely be a few of the less-costly vehicles to insure for new drivers. Rates will tend to be more expensive just because there is more inherent risk for first-time drivers, but generally speaking those makes and models will probably have the lowest prices compared to all other vehicles.
Determining which companies offer the best auto insurance rates for first-time drivers takes a bit more effort than just quoting one company's rates.
Each insurance company used slightly different criteria for establishing rates, so let's take a look at the most budget-friendly auto insurance companies in North Carolina. It's important that readers know that Charlotte, NC auto insurance rates are impacted by many things that can increase the policy price. Getting older, buying higher coverage limits, or getting a ticket for careless driving may generate price changes that can cause some rates to be cheaper than before.
Cheapest Insurance Rates for Inexperienced Drivers
|Rank||Company||Cost Per Year|
|4||NC Farm Bureau||$716|
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Progressive quotes some of the best car insurance rates in Charlotte at around $639 each year. This is $233 less than the average policy premium paid by North Carolina drivers of $872. Utica National, Liberty Mutual, NC Farm Bureau, and GEICO would also make the list of some of the more affordable Charlotte, NC insurance companies.
As shown in the rates above, if you currently have a policy with NC Farm Bureau and switched to Progressive, you might achieve an annual savings of around $77. Policyholders with GEICO may save as much as $89 a year, and Penn National customers might see rate reductions of $108 a year.
To find cheaper insurance rates for your vehicle, click here to start your free quote or feel free to get quotes from the companies below.
Understand that those premium estimates are averages for all types of insureds and vehicles and are not factoring in a vehicle location for first-time drivers. So the insurer that has the lowest price for you may not even be in the top 20 companies shown above. That points out the importance of why you need to compare rates from as many companies as possible using your own driver and vehicle profiles.
For new drivers, one of the largest criteria that are used to help calculate auto insurance rates is your zip code in Charlotte. More populated areas tend to have more expensive auto insurance rates, whereas areas with lower crime rates and fewer weather claims benefit from lower rates.
The information below rates the most expensive areas in North Carolina for first-time drivers to purchase a policy in. Charlotte ranks #3 with an annual cost of $832 on average, which is around $69 each month.
|Rank||City||Average Per Year|
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Rate quotes are comparative as zip code location can affect auto insurance rates noticeably.
How accidents and violations affect rates
The best way to snag low auto insurance premiums for new drivers is to pay attention while driving and avoid getting tickets or having accidents. The diagram below shows how traffic citations and at-fault collisions raise insurance prices for each age group. The information is based on a married female driver, comp and collision included, $1,000 deductibles, and no discounts are applied.
In the previous example, the average cost of auto insurance in North Carolina per year with a clean driving record and no accidents is $810. Get written up for one speeding ticket and the average cost hikes up to $944, an increase of $134 each year. Then add one accident along with the one speeding ticket and the annual cost of auto insurance for first-time drivers goes up to an average of $1,314. That's an increase of $504, or $42 per month, just for being a less-than-perfect driver!
The example below illustrates how your choice of deductibles can change insurance prices when searching for cheap insurance for first-time drivers. The data assumes a single female driver, comprehensive and collision coverage, and no discounts are applied.
The data above shows that a 30-year-old driver could reduce rates by $226 a year by changing from a $100 deductible up to a $500 deductible, or save $340 by changing to a $1,000 deductible. Young drivers, like the Age 20 chart data, could possibly save up to $502 or even more by choosing a higher deductible. When insureds make the decision to increase the deductibles on their policy, it's a good idea to have spare funds to pay the extra out-of-pocket expense, which is the one inconvenience of using high deductibles.
Types of discounts on Charlotte insurance
Car insurance companies that provide policies for first-time drivers may also provide rate discounts that could reduce prices by 40% or more if you meet specific eligibility requirements. A few popular companies and their offered discounts are detailed below.
- GEICO offers premium reductions for multi-vehicle, multi-policy, good student, federal employee, membership and employees, and daytime running lights.
- Travelers has discounts for IntelliDrive, home ownership, student away at school, multi-car, payment discounts, and save driver.
- Farm Bureau offers discounts including youthful driver, 55 and retired, safe driver, multi-policy, driver training, and multi-vehicle.
- Liberty Mutual may offer discounts for safety features, preferred payment discount, hybrid vehicle, multi-car, exclusive group savings, multi-policy, and teen driver discount.
- American Family policyholders can earn discounts including Steer into Savings, good driver, accident-free, defensive driver, bundled insurance, and good student.
- Progressive includes discounts for multi-vehicle, continuous coverage, good student, multi-policy, online quote discount, homeowner, and online signing.
The diagram below illustrates the comparison of insurance prices with and without discounts applied to the rates. The rates are based on a female driver, no claims, a clean driving record, North Carolina state minimum liability limits, comp and collision included, and $1,000 deductibles. The first bar for each age group shows the average rate with no discounts. The lower bar shows the rates with paperless filing, good student, paid-in-full, continuous coverage, vehicle safety, and anti-theft discounts applied. With discounts applied, the average amount saved each year on auto insurance for first-time drivers is 28% or $487.