The average cost of auto insurance in the U.S. rose from $814.63 to $841.23 in 2012, according to a 2016 report from the National Association of Insurance Commissioners. This rise in insurance premium costs don’t tell the full story of insurance premiums throughout the U.S., and especially the west coast.
There are various factors that go into determining how much you’ll pay for insurance. These include your driving record, how often you use your car, your gender, age, the type of car you drive and your credit score. Your geographical location also plays an important role in determining the cost of your insurance premium.
Geographical Influence on Insurance Rates
It is no secret that the cost of insurance differs from one state to another. Based on the number of accidents a state has by region and county, insurance companies will raise or drop their rates.
But why else do insurance rates vary so much from one state to another?
- Population density
Every city and state varies in terms of population density. Insurance providers reason that where there are more vehicles in high density areas, there are more chances of accidents. States that are more densely populated can therefore expect to pay more in insurance premiums as a result.
- Differing state requirements
The minimum requirements for insurance coverage vary from one state to another. Some states require drivers to only have liability insurance while others require drivers to have comprehensive coverage. The minimum coverage also varies from one state to another. Some states require higher coverage than others due to road conditions, weather conditions and topography.
- Differing state taxes
While two states may have the same requirements for liability insurance, the premiums paid in the different states may differ due to the difference in tax to be paid.
Insurance Rates in West Coast Cities
- Los Angeles
Los Angeles isn’t only known for its sun and movie stars, but also for the cars. The city is congested, making it a difficult place to drive in. Many have been noted as calling it one of the most terrifying places to drive. Insurance premiums rates are high in LA at an average of $1,623 according to a recent KPCC study. This is because the city is not only congested but also because it has higher incidents of car accidents. The study also notes that many drivers are either underinsured or uninsured.
- San Francisco
This is the second most densely populated city in the country. It is also known for having a high rate of vehicle theft. Insurance rates in this city are high as a result of these factors.
- San Diego
San Diego isn’t far behind San Francisco in terms of car insurance rates. Car insurance in San Diego costs an average of $1,030 a year. Though this is slightly above the national average of $841 given in the Insurance Information Institute’s report, it’s still less expensive than the previously mentioned cities.
San Diego is one of the more affordable states in California when it comes to insurance. Although it is the eighth-most populated city nationwide, it has a relatively low population density.
According to the III, the average cost of insurance in Seattle of $1,453 is above the national average. It is the largest city in Washington. Insurance premiums are higher in the city since minimum liability coverage required by the state is higher.
Insurance rates differ depending on your zip code. However, you can always find the best rate in your zip code by comparing insurance quotes.