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Best Cheap Car Insurance in Washington

Cheapest Washington Car Insurance

If you’re looking for cheap Washington car insurance, you already know that finding the best deal can be challenging. Quotes from various companies for the same policy can land all over the map, so comparing rates is crucial.

To help Washingtonians find the best deal, NerdWallet tested rates from the nine largest car insurance companies in the state and found the three cheapest options for these driver types:

Good drivers

Young drivers

Families with one teen driver

Drivers with poor credit

Retired drivers

Also in this article

Minimum insurance requirements for Washington

Alternative car insurance for high-risk drivers

Cheapest for good drivers

For drivers with no at-fault accidents, DUIs or moving violations; range of average prices: $806 to $1,832

NerdWallet is a free tool to find you the best credit cards, cd rates, savings, checking accounts, scholarships, healthcare and airlines. Start here to maximize your rewards or minimize your interest rates. Alex Glenn usaa_autoApply nowUSAA is open only to active military members, veterans and their families.usaa_auto Apply nowUSAA is open only to active military members, veterans and their families.NerdWallet is a free tool to find you the best credit cards, cd rates, savings, checking accounts, scholarships, healthcare and airlines. Start here to maximize your rewards or minimize your interest rates. Alex Glenn pemco-insurance-logoNerdWallet is a free tool to find you the best credit cards, cd rates, savings, checking accounts, scholarships, healthcare and airlines. Start here to maximize your rewards or minimize your interest rates. Alex Glenn State Farm car insurance

The average for good drivers among the three cheapest options was $887 per year. USAA was the most affordable company in our test, but keep in mind that only former or active military members and their families qualify. For non-military shoppers, PEMCO and State Farm are solid options with relatively competitive costs of their own, about $7 to $13 more per month than USAA.

Cheapest for young drivers

For drivers in their early 20s; range of average prices: $476 to $1,466

NerdWallet is a free tool to find you the best credit cards, cd rates, savings, checking accounts, scholarships, healthcare and airlines. Start here to maximize your rewards or minimize your interest rates. Alex Glenn usaa_autoApply nowUSAA is open only to active military members, veterans and their families.usaa_auto Apply nowUSAA is open only to active military members, veterans and their families.NerdWallet is a free tool to find you the best credit cards, cd rates, savings, checking accounts, scholarships, healthcare and airlines. Start here to maximize your rewards or minimize your interest rates. Alex Glenn pemco-insurance-logoNerdWallet is a free tool to find you the best credit cards, cd rates, savings, checking accounts, scholarships, healthcare and airlines. Start here to maximize your rewards or minimize your interest rates. Alex Glenn State Farm car insurance

Drivers in their early 20s often don’t need as much coverage as older motorists, who may have families or extensive assets to protect. This explains why young drivers can get some of the cheapest Washington car insurance. Both the military-affiliated USAA and PEMCO scored rates lower than $45 a month. State Farm was a bit higher — roughly $58 a month — but as a larger insurer with deeper coffers and a wider service area, they may be able to offer perks and convenience that help make up for the price difference.

Cheapest for families with one teen driver

For middle-aged couples with one teen driver; range of average prices: $1,131 to $6,995

NerdWallet is a free tool to find you the best credit cards, cd rates, savings, checking accounts, scholarships, healthcare and airlines. Start here to maximize your rewards or minimize your interest rates. Alex Glenn usaa_autoApply nowUSAA is open only to active military members, veterans and their families.usaa_auto Apply nowUSAA is open only to active military members, veterans and their families.NerdWallet is a free tool to find you the best credit cards, cd rates, savings, checking accounts, scholarships, healthcare and airlines. Start here to maximize your rewards or minimize your interest rates. Alex Glenn Geico logoNerdWallet is a free tool to find you the best credit cards, cd rates, savings, checking accounts, scholarships, healthcare and airlines. Start here to maximize your rewards or minimize your interest rates. Alex Glenn State Farm car insurance

This category had by far the biggest range of average prices of any we tested: nearly $6,000 between the lowest and highest. That goes to show how important it is for drivers with a teen on the policy to compare as many quotes as they can. For those who qualify, USAA notched the lowest estimate by a healthy margin. Geico and State Farm are solid choices for teen-oriented policies, as both have multiple discount options for first-time drivers.

For those

placed in the lowest credit tier as determined by the industry; range of average prices: $977 to $2,251

NerdWallet is a free tool to find you the best credit cards, cd rates, savings, checking accounts, scholarships, healthcare and airlines. Start here to maximize your rewards or minimize your interest rates. Alex Glenn NerdWallet is a free tool to find you the best credit cards, cd rates, savings, checking accounts, scholarships, healthcare and airlines. Start here to maximize your rewards or minimize your interest rates. Alex Glenn usaa_autoApply nowUSAA is open only to active military members, veterans and their families.usaa_auto Apply nowUSAA is open only to active military members, veterans and their families.NerdWallet is a free tool to find you the best credit cards, cd rates, savings, checking accounts, scholarships, healthcare and airlines. Start here to maximize your rewards or minimize your interest rates. Alex Glenn Geico logo

Frustrating as it can be, your credit score makes a difference when getting a Washington car insurance quote. Many companies in the industry see a direct link between credit and future accident claims, and may charge more if you have credit problems. That said, Washington drivers still have fairly affordable options. The lowest average quote for this category, from Safeco, was only about $14 per month more than the lowest quote for good drivers with no credit issues.

Cheapest for retired drivers

For drivers in their mid- to late 60s who no longer use their car for commuting; range of average prices: $710 to $1,955

NerdWallet is a free tool to find you the best credit cards, cd rates, savings, checking accounts, scholarships, healthcare and airlines. Start here to maximize your rewards or minimize your interest rates. Alex Glenn pemco-insurance-logo pemco-insurance-logoNerdWallet is a free tool to find you the best credit cards, cd rates, savings, checking accounts, scholarships, healthcare and airlines. Start here to maximize your rewards or minimize your interest rates. Alex Glenn usaa_autoApply nowUSAA is open only to active military members, veterans and their families.usaa_auto Apply nowUSAA is open only to active military members, veterans and their families.NerdWallet is a free tool to find you the best credit cards, cd rates, savings, checking accounts, scholarships, healthcare and airlines. Start here to maximize your rewards or minimize your interest rates. Alex Glenn State Farm car insurance

Retired drivers, given their often reduced time behind the wheel compared to their younger, commuting counterparts, have relatively cheap options at their disposal. All three of the most affordable companies from our test returned very similar rates: around $60 a month. Older motorists often have a variety of discount options that younger drivers might not. Look to trim your costs by completing a defensive driver course, owning a home or simply reaching a certain age threshold.

Minimum Washington car insurance requirements

Washington law requires drivers to purchase liability insurance. If you’re ever found at-fault in a car accident, liability coverage goes toward others’ property damage and injury expenses so you don’t have to pay these bills out of your own pocket.

The minimum limits for this coverage are:

  • $25,000 bodily injury liability per person
  • $50,000 bodily injury liability per accident
  • $10,000 property damage liability per accident

While this will be enough to drive legally, it’s usually wise to select more than bare minimum, as a serious crash could easily leave you owning more than, say, $10,000 in property damage. You might also want to consider common optional coverages, such as collision, comprehensive and uninsured motorist protection.

Check out NerdWallet’s guide to state car insurance requirements to learn more about how the key parts of your Washington policy work and what limits make sense for you.

Alternative car insurance in Washington

Washington is one of several states that make up the Western Association of Automobile Insurance Plans (WAAIP). Drivers who’re denied traditional coverage on the voluntary market because of poor credit, a spotty driving record or other factors can be connected to an insurer under the WAAIP network.

You can also try our comparison shopping tool to see how much you could be saving.

And in case you missed anything, here’s a summary of where you’ll find the cheapest insurance, by category:

METHODOLOGY

For most categories, NerdWallet averaged rates for 30-year-old men and women in 10 ZIP codes and with 100/300/50 liability insurance limits and 100/300 uninsured motorist coverage limits. We used a 2012 Toyota Camry in all cases.

To test rates for families with teen drivers, we used a 46-year-old female and 47-year-old male with a 16-year-old son. Our sample retired driver was 67 and drove 50% fewer annual miles than other groups. Our sample young driver was 22 and carried the minimum required coverage. The range described includes quotes retrieved by NerdWallet from the nine largest insurers in the state. Your own rates will be different.

Alex Glenn is a staff writer for NerdWallet, a personal finance website. Email: aglenn@nerdwallet.com.


Category: Auto Insurance

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