10 Ways Drivers Can Lower Their Auto Insurance Rates

An automobile accident occurs once every six minutes in the United States. That’s 14,386 accidents per day, on average. The frequency of accidents may seem shocking at first, until you consider things like speeding statistics:

  • 42% of drivers don’t consider 10 mph over the speed limit to be speeding.
  • Drivers go 10 mph over the speed limit 50% of the time.
  • A 10 mph increase in speed raises the risk of a crash by over 9%.

And that’s just speeding. There are other hazards out there on the road, such as:

  • Aggressive Driving
  • Driver Error
  • Distracted Driving
  • Impaired Driving
  • Weather
  • Wildlife

Protecting yourself from all this risk comes with a cost: your auto insurance rates. How can you lower costs while increasing safety and coverage for you and your loved ones? Read on for ten ways to lower your auto insurance rates.

Tip #1 – Increase Your Deductible

A key feature of many types of insurance coverage is a deductible. Simply put, a deductible is the amount of money you pay out of pocket toward any claims you have to make.

Opting for a higher deductible is one of the quickest and easiest ways to reduce your monthly auto insurance rates. Just keep in mind that, in the event of an accident, you’ll have to pay the deductible yourself before any reimbursements from your insurance company are approved.

Tip #2 – Check for Discounts

There are a range of discounts that you may qualify for, especially if you’re a safe driver or don’t put a lot of miles on your vehicle. The following discounts may not be available from all insurance companies, but it’s worth checking nonetheless:

  • Going Paperless
  • Paying Online
  • Automated Payments
  • Pay Your Annual Policy Up Front
  • Antitheft Devices
  • Bundled Auto and Homeowners Insurance
  • Defensive Driving Courses
  • Drivers Education Courses
  • Good Credit
  • Higher Deductibles
  • Low Annual Mileage
  • Long-Time Customer
  • Multiple Vehicles
  • No Accidents in 3 Years
  • No Moving Violations in 3 Years
  • Student Drivers with Good Grades

Tip #3 – Compare Rates

It never hurts to shop around for the best deal, and auto insurance is no different. Basically, each insurance company has its own rates and treats factors such as age and driving history differently. Therefore, the price from one company to another can vary significantly, and it makes sense to get at least three quotes from different providers.

Pro Tip: Shop around whenever your policy is about to renew to consistently secure the best auto insurance rates.

Tip #4 – Be a Safe Driver

One of the best ways to lower costs and increase safety for you and your loved ones is to practice safe driving. Obeying the speed limit, slowing down during inclement weather, and not engaging in road rage will all help you avoid events that raise your rates.

The more moving violations and accidents you have on your driving record, the higher your rates will be. If you can maintain a claims-free and violation-free driving history, you’ll be able to secure the best auto insurance rates and may even qualify for additional discounts.

Tip #5 – Take a Safe Driving or Defensive Driving Course

What if you don’t have a great driving record?

Taking a safe or defensive driving class can help you improve your safe driving habits. It can even reduce your rates after an accident or driving violation. If you can prove to your insurance company that you’re a responsible driver, you may not have to wait until your rates are automatically lowered.

Keep in mind that in many states, at-fault accidents can stay on your driving record for three to five years, and during that time, you’ll pay more than you otherwise would have on your auto insurance rates.

Tip #6 – Improve Your Credit Score

A poor credit score can raise your auto insurance rates by as much as 72%! For example, if you have good credit and live in New Hampshire, you’ll pay about $130 per month for auto insurance, on average. If you have poor credit, you’ll pay about $280 per month, on average. That’s a 116% increase!

In Vermont, the averages for good versus poor credit are $92 per month versus $152 per month, respectively, which is an average increase of 65%.

Insurance companies know that drivers with good credit are statistically more likely to make responsible decisions while driving. Conversely, research has proven that drivers with poor credit scores are more likely to file a claim, so they’re more costly to insure.

Simply put, improving your credit score saves you money on auto insurance.

Tip #7 – Review Your Policy

Have your auto insurance needs changed? The pandemic accelerated the number of people working from home, and if you haven’t accounted for the fact that you may be driving fewer miles, then you might be paying more than you need to for auto insurance.

Is your vehicle old? As it ages, the replacement cost in the event of an accident decreases. Therefore, you might be able to lower your auto insurance limits for collision, comprehensive, and vehicle repair insurance.

Or, if your vehicle is paid off or you don’t owe a lot on it, you may no longer need that gap insurance you purchased.

Are you older than 25? Married? Own a home? These factors may also reduce your auto insurance costs and allow you to bundle auto and home insurance policies together, saving even more.

If you work from home, have a short commute, or use public transportation, you may qualify for low mileage discounts.

So, take a look at your auto insurance policy and think about what you really need, and what you may need to add or cut.

Tip #8 – How Costly is Your Vehicle to Insure?

Auto insurance costs vary widely depending on what type of vehicle you drive. For example, the five most expensive vehicles to insure, with an average monthly premium of over $400 per month, are likely to be:

  • Maserati Quattroporte
  • Audi R8
  • BMW i8
  • Mercedes-AMG GT
  • Nissan GT-R

Compare that to the least expensive vehicles to insure, with an average monthly premium of just $165-$175 per month:

  • Ford F-150
  • Honda CR-V
  • Mazda CX-5
  • Honda Pilot
  • Chevrolet Traverse

These averages indicate how much the cost of auto insurance can vary from one vehicle type to another. It makes good financial sense to consider what kind of car you will drive—and what kind of car to buy—when reviewing your insurance rates.

Maybe passing up that flashy sports car with an annual auto insurance price tag of $5,000 and opting for a vehicle that costs less to insure is the way to go. Also, if you’re buying a new vehicle, remember that the cheapest vehicles aren’t always the cheapest to insure.

Do your research, or better yet, talk to one of our experts today.

Tip #9 – Consider Teen Drivers

Any parent can tell you that kids cost a lot of money, and that includes when they first get behind the wheel of the family car.

With less driving experience and a higher likelihood of getting into an accident, your auto insurance costs will go up once they start driving, and for a good reason. Teens aged 16-19 have the highest likelihood of any age group of getting into a motor vehicle accident. They also have a fatal crash rate almost three times as high as drivers ages 20 and older per mile driven.

With statistics like these, your auto insurance provider will raise your rates when your kids start driving. However, there are some things you can do to help mitigate these costs:

  • Raise comprehensive and collision deductibles to lower your premiums and possibly avoid having to file a small claim that could negatively impact a claims-free discount.
  • Eliminate collision and comprehensive insurance on old vehicles that aren’t worth more than the deductible.
  • Pick a safe car with a solid safety record.
  • Encourage your kids to study. Good grades can result in discounts from some auto insurers.
  • If your child goes away to college, let your auto insurance provider know because it can result in a cost reduction if they’re no longer, or infrequently, driving your car.
  • Ask about discounts for teen drivers.
  • Bundle auto and home insurance policies.
  • Shop around for the best price.
  • Talk to an expert.

Tip #10 – Install Anti-Theft Devices

You may qualify for lower insurance rates if you use an anti-theft device for your vehicle. While your insurance provider will be able to tell you which devices can lower your premiums, the following devices often qualify:

  • Steering Wheel Locks
  • Ignition Kill Switches
  • Floorboard Locks
  • Gearshift Locks
  • Armored Collars
  • Window Etching.
  • Audio Alarms
  • Hood Locks
  • Tire Locks
  • Vehicle Tracking Systems

Do you have the right personal or commercial auto insurance coverage?

Contact us or find an agent near you today to learn how we can customize your auto insurance policies to meet your needs.


Allstate Insurance. Does your credit score affect your car insurance rate?

ASA Insurance. 10 Anti-Theft Devices That Can Reduce Your Insurance Rates.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Teen Drivers and Passengers: Get the Facts.

Insurance Information Institute. Nine ways to lower your auto insurance costs.

Investopedia. 15 Tips and Ideas for Cutting Car Insurance Costs.

News 9. What are your chances of getting into a car accident?

Progressive. How To Save on Commercial Auto Insurance.

The Drive. Best Car Anti-Theft Devices: Give Your Vehicle an Extra Layer of Security.

The Zebra. The Most Expensive Vehicles to Insure.

Value Penguin. How Does Your Credit Score Affect Auto Insurance Rates?

Value Penguin. Car Accident Statistics: Fatalities, Injuries, and Top Risk Factors.

Value Penguin. The Cheapest Cars to Insure in 2023.

Wallet Hub. How long do tickets stay on your record in Vermont?

*Disclaimer: We offer content for informational purposes; Co-Op Co-operative Insurance Companies may not provide all the services or products listed here. Please contact your local agent to learn more about how we can help with your insurance needs.

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