The words “affordable” and “auto insurance” really should not be used together, in particular when looking for the lowest insurance rates for infrequent drivers. Because it’s so expensive, let’s learn about some of the factors that have an impact on car insurance premiums, and come up with some ways to take a little off your next policy.
The vehicle model that is being insured is one of the largest considerations in finding the cheapest auto insurance for infrequent drivers. Vehicles with high performance features, poor passenger safety features, or high incidents of liability claims will cost more to insure than more modest models.
The data below presents insurance premiums for a handful of the more affordable automobiles to insure in California.
|Make and Model||Estimated Cost for Full Coverage|
|Honda CR-V EX-L 2WD||$1,301|
|Ford Escape XLS 4WD||$1,397|
|Jeep Wrangler Sport 4WD 2-Dr||$1,504|
|Toyota RAV4 4WD||$1,507|
|Nissan Altima 2.5 4-Dr Sedan||$1,515|
|GMC Sierra SLE Regular Cab 2WD||$1,507|
|Toyota Corolla S||$1,588|
|Ford Edge Limited AWD||$1,597|
|Toyota Camry SE||$1,588|
|Toyota Tacoma X-Runner 2WD||$1,597|
|Honda Odyssey EX-L W/Rear Entertainment||$1,588|
|Hyundai Sonata GLS 4-Dr Sedan||$1,616|
|Chevrolet Silverado LS Crew Cab 4WD||$1,619|
|GMC Sierra 2500HD SLE Regular Cab 4WD||$1,624|
|Dodge Grand Caravan CV||$1,621|
|Chevrolet Impala LS||$1,662|
|Ford F-150 SVT Raptor Super Cab 4WD||$1,683|
|Ford Explorer Limited 2WD||$1,691|
|Chevrolet Equinox LS 2WD||$1,700|
|Volkswagen Jetta S 4-Dr Sedan||$1,707|
|Honda Civic LX-S 4-Dr Sedan||$1,711|
|Chevrolet Silverado 2500HD LTZ Crew Cab Diesel 4WD||$1,728|
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Data based on single male driver age 30, no speeding tickets, no at-fault accidents, $1,000 deductibles, and California minimum liability limits. Discounts applied include claim-free, safe-driver, multi-vehicle, multi-policy, and homeowner. Rate information does not factor in vehicle location which can influence auto insurance rates significantly.
Based upon these rates, we can tell that cars like the Honda CR-V, Ford Escape, Toyota Prius, Jeep Wrangler, and Toyota RAV4 are likely to be some of the most economical vehicles to insure for low mileage drivers.
For low mileage drivers, one of the big things that determine the cost of insurance is where you normally keep your vehicle in Sacramento. Areas with more people or higher crime rates tend to have higher rates, whereas areas with less congestion benefit from having to pay less for coverage.
The table below ranks the highest-priced places in California for infrequent drivers to purchase car insurance in. Sacramento is ranked #5 with an annual cost of $1,669 for the average insurance policy, which is around $139 each month.
|Rank||City||Premium Per Year|
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Prices are approximated as the garaging address in Sacramento can change coverage rates considerably.
Picking a high-quality auto insurance company can be challenging considering how many different companies sell coverage in California. The rank data in the next section may help you select which car insurance providers to look at comparing rates from. The rankings below only include the companies with a significant amount of written premium nationwide, so companies that have a smaller presence are not factored into the list.
Top 10 Large Car Insurance Companies in Sacramento Ranked by Value
- American Family
- The Hartford
- AAA of Southern California
- Titan Insurance
- The General
- AAA Insurance
- State Farm
- Mercury Insurance
Difference between full coverage and liability only rates
Reducing premiums for car insurance is important to the majority of drivers, and one way to lower the cost of insurance for infrequent drivers is to only buy liability insurance. The illustration below illustrates the difference between insurance prices with and without physical damage coverage, medical payments, and uninsured/under-insured motorist coverage. The rate quotes are based on no claims or driving citations, $100 deductibles, drivers are not married, and no discounts are factored in.
As an overall average, physical damage insurance costs $2,812 per year more than insuring for liability only. That brings up the question if full coverage is worth the money. There is no exact rule of when to drop full coverage on your policy, but there is a general school of thought. If the annual cost of your full coverage insurance is 10% or more of the vehicle’s replacement cost less your deductible, then it could be time to drop full coverage.
For example, let’s assume your vehicle’s settlement value is $4,000 and you have $1,000 policy deductibles. If your vehicle is destroyed, the most you would receive is $3,000 after you pay the deductible. If you are currently paying more than $300 annually for full coverage, then you may want to consider only buying liability coverage.
There are some situations where dropping physical damage coverage is not a good plan. If you have an outstanding loan on your vehicle, you have to carry full coverage as part of the loan conditions. Also, if you cannot afford to purchase a different vehicle in the even your car is totaled, you should keep full coverage in place.
Impact of careless driving on car insurance rates
A great way to obtain low car insurance prices in Sacramento for low mileage drivers is to drive attentively and not have accidents or get tickets. The information below highlights how traffic violations and at-fault collisions drive up insurance costs for each different age group. The price estimates are based on a single male driver, comp and collision included, $250 deductibles, and no discounts are applied to the premium.
In the prior example, the average cost of a car insurance policy per year with a clean driving record and no accidents is $3,147. Receive two speeding tickets and the average cost jumps to $4,177, an increase of $1,030 each year. Then add one accident along with the two speeding tickets and the yearly cost of car insurance for infrequent drivers goes up to an average of $5,213. That’s an increase of $2,065, or $172 per month, just for being a careless driver!