Car ownership can be freeing, allowing you to travel wherever you want, whenever you want. But it comes with several hidden costs that you need to fit into your budget. One of the biggest costs is your car insurance, which is required in some form in almost all states.
When you start shopping around for the best deal, you might notice that the price varies quite a bit depending on your age. Why is that, and how can you make sure you get the best deal?
Why does price vary by age?
When you are a newly licensed (and therefore inexperienced) driver, you are statistically more likely to be involved in an accident. That’s why you will see higher insurance premiums when you first start driving. As you become more experienced behind the wheel, your insurance company will adjust your premiums accordingly.
At what age does the car insurance get cheaper?
Generally, your premiums should decrease slightly each year until around age 25 or 30. This is especially true if you have kept a clean driving record since first getting your license. Even after age 25, you may see smaller decreases in your premiums as you get older, provided you are a safe driver and avoid accidents as much as possible.
Does the price of car insurance go down automatically at 25?
While some insurance providers are proactive about renewal rates, you should still check in every year when you renew your policy to see if you can score a lower rate.
As you approach your 25th birthday, call your insurance provider and ask what your new premiums will be after you reach the quarter-century mark. You can also call around to other insurance agencies and see which offers the best price. Use that information to see if you can get your current insurance provider to give you a lower rate.
It’s a good idea to start calling your insurance provider at renewal time each year to see if you can save some money on your monthly car insurance premium.
When do car insurance rates start to increase?
Once you turn 65, you’ll notice a slight increase in your car insurance premiums. You won’t pay close to what you did before age 25, but it’ll still be more than you paid for most of your adult life. IIHS statistics show that drivers 65 and older are more likely to be involved in an accident and make a claim, which means they are a higher risk to insure.
What age group pays the most/least for insurance?
While your insurance rate is based on more than just your age, you can get a good idea of the average drivers your age pay for car insurance using the information in the following table.
|Driver age range||Male drivers||Female drivers|
Driver age range16-19
Driver age range20-24
Driver age range25-34
Driver age range35-44
Driver age range45-54
Driver age range55-64
Driver age rangeOver 65
This information reflects full-coverage car insurance; you can always opt for lesser coverage if it makes sense for you and your budget. Data provided by Nerdwallet.
What other factors go into your car insurance rate?
Age is a huge factor in how much you’ll pay in monthly insurance premiums, but there are several other factors that can affect how much you’ll pay. Here are examples of the most common factors affecting your rate.
Your gender is a big one. Research by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety shows that, between 1975 and 2018, men died in car accidents at a rate of more than double that of women, making them riskier for insurance providers to cover. Hence, men tend to pay more for car insurance than women do (and teen males generally pay the most).
Where you live can determine how much you pay in car insurance. Drivers who live in urban areas more prone to theft and accidents pay more on average than drivers in rural areas.
Your marital status might sound like it has nothing to do with how safely you drive, but being married is seen as a sign of maturity by insurance companies. While it’s not true that getting hitched automatically turns you into a mature adult, it does tend to make you a safer driver (at least statistically).
The cost of your car determines how much you’ll pay for insurance. Remember, your car insurance provider may need to pay to repair or replace your car when you make a claim. A more expensive car means a higher replacement cost, and therefore a higher insurance premium. So driving a Jaguar means you’ll pay more for insurance than if you drive a Honda.
Newer vehicles often come with advanced safety technologies like automatic braking. If your car has these features, you could qualify for a discount on your insurance.
If you have been involved in several accidents (and therefore made several insurance claims) over your tenure as a driver, you’ll be seen as a risk in the eyes of the insurance company and your rates will rise. Keeping a clean driving record is not only good for you and the drivers around you, but it tells insurance companies you’re a safe driver who is less likely to make a claim, and you’ll enjoy lower rates.
A long daily commute or frequent road trips mean you’re on the road more often and therefore more likely to get into an accident and make a claim. Daily drivers tend to pay more for insurance than those who use their cars occasionally.
Drivers with bad credit history are seen as a risk to insurance providers because they may be less likely to pay their monthly premiums, and more likely to file a claim. If your credit history is good, you’ll probably get a better car insurance rate as well.
How can you lower your car insurance rate?
Even if your age, gender, and lifestyle make it harder to find affordable car insurance, there are some ways you can work toward paying less as you grow older. Ask your insurance provider if you qualify for any of the following.
Bundling your car and home or renter’s insurance is a good way to get a monthly discount on your premiums.
Good driver discounts
If you’re a safe driver and don’t have any accidents or traffic violations (like speeding tickets) under your belt, you could score a discount.
Vehicle safety discounts
As previously mentioned, newer cars tend to come with advanced safety features. If you buy a car with features like automatic braking or a blind-spot camera, you could qualify for a lower rate.
Good student discounts
If you’re still in school, you may be able to get a discount on your car insurance if you can keep up a good GPA.
While your car insurance rate does depend heavily on your age (especially when you’re younger), you can help lower it by driving safely and responsibly. It’s a good idea to shop around to see which company can give you the best rate and best discounts. Good luck!