For minors, one of the big considerations that are looked at to determine the annual cost of car insurance is where you normally keep your vehicle. Areas with more people or more claims are more likely to have higher rates, whereas areas with fewer weather claims and lower vehicle theft rates benefit from lower coverage costs.
The next table shows the highest-priced places in California for drivers under 21 to purchase car insurance in. San Jose makes the list at #18 having an annual price of $1,423 for the average policyholder, which is around $119 per month.
|Rank||City||Premium Per Year|
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Premium costs are estimated as the garaging address in San Jose can raise or lower rates substantially.
The vehicle driven is a large factor when consumers are trying to find the cheapest insurance for drivers under 21. Vehicles with lower acceleration and performance, excellent safety ratings, or a positive history of liability claims will cost substantially less to insure than fast, unsafe models. The information below ranks car insurance prices for the most cost-effective automobiles to insure.
|Vehicle||Estimated Cost for Full Coverage|
|Ford Escape XLS 2WD||$2,588|
|Honda CR-V EX 4WD||$2,620|
|Jeep Wrangler Sport 4WD 2-Dr||$2,679|
|Honda Accord EX-L 4-Dr Sedan||$2,802|
|Toyota Tacoma 4WD||$2,893|
|Ford Explorer Eddie Bauer 2WD||$2,903|
|Ford Focus S 4-Dr Sedan||$3,044|
|Ford Edge Limited 2WD||$3,050|
|Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo 4WD||$3,075|
|Chevrolet Equinox LT AWD||$3,085|
|Chevrolet Impala LT||$3,075|
|Dodge Grand Caravan Hero||$3,085|
|Toyota RAV4 Limited 2WD||$3,075|
|Chevrolet Malibu LT||$3,107|
|Honda Civic EX 4-Dr Sedan||$3,226|
|Toyota Camry XLE||$3,258|
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Data assumes single female driver age 19, no speeding tickets, no at-fault accidents, $1,000 deductibles, and California minimum liability limits. Discounts applied include safe-driver, and claim-free. Estimates do not factor in zip code location which can revise insurance rates substantially.
Based upon the table data, you can presume that cars like the Ford Escape, Honda CR-V, Jeep Wrangler, Honda Accord, and Toyota Prius are most likely going to be the cheaper vehicles to insure for minors. Prices will be more costly just because there is more exposure for drivers under 21, but overall those particular vehicles will most likely have the lowest prices that you are likely to find.
What is the best insurance company in California?
Picking the highest-rated car insurance company can be a challenge considering how many companies sell coverage in California. The ranking information displayed below could help you analyze which insurers you want to consider shopping prices with. The ratings below are only comprised of companies who write in the majority of U.S. states, so smaller companies are not factored into this list.
|Company||Value||Customer Service||Claims||Customer Satisfaction||A.M Best Rating||Overall Score|
|AAA of Southern California||91||94||97||92%||A+||94.1|
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Data Source: Insure.com Best Car Insurance Companies
Liability-only versus full coverage
Saving on insurance is important to the majority of vehicle owners, and one easy way to pay lower rates for insurance for drivers under 21 is to not pay for full coverage. The illustration below illustrates the difference between insurance premiums with full coverage compared to only the California minimum liability coverage. The data is based on no claims or driving violations, $100 deductibles, marital status is single, and no discounts are applied to the premium.
If all age groups are averaged, physical damage coverage costs an additional $3,444 per year over and above liability only. That may make you wonder if buying full coverage is worth the expense. There is no definitive formula of when to eliminate full coverage, but there is a general school of thought. If the annual cost of comprehensive and collision coverage is more than about 10% of any settlement you would receive from your insurance company, then it may be the right time to buy liability only.
There are some cases where eliminating full coverage is not in your best interest. If you still have a lienholder on your title, you have to carry full coverage in order to prevent your loan from defaulting. Also, if your savings is not enough to buy a different vehicle in the even your car is totaled, you should not consider dropping full coverage.
Reckless driving habits raise San Jose insurance rates
A great way to snag the most affordable insurance premiums for minors is to drive carefully and avoid accidents and traffic violations. The example below shows how traffic citations and at-fault accidents can affect insurance prices for different insured age categories. Data assumes a married female driver, full physical damage coverage, $500 deductibles, and no other discounts are factored in.
The data in the chart shows the average cost of a car insurance policy per year with no accidents and a clean driving record is $1,598. Add in two speeding tickets and the average cost increases to $2,264, an increase of $666 each year. Then add in two accidents along with the two speeding tickets and the yearly cost of insurance for drivers under 21 increases to an average of $4,870. That’s an increase of $3,272, or $273 per month, just for being a careless driver!
The importance of shopping around
San Jose insurance rates are determined by lots of factors which can significantly increase or decrease the price of your policy. Improving your credit rating, adding a teenager to your policy, or having an accident may cause policy rate changes that can cause some rates to be cheaper than before.
Also, insurance companies file new California auto insurance rates without warning in order to protect their financial rating. Heavy losses can cause increased rates, while less frequent claims may produce lower-cost San Jose car insurance rates.
As an example, the chart below shows the company with the cheapest car insurance in San Jose, CA for a 35-year-old female driver with a good driving record, no prior claims, and excellent credit. When comparing rates based on her personal risk profile, USAA might quote the lowest car insurance rates in San Jose at $1,211 per year. This is $440 less than the average rate paid by California drivers of $1,651. Century National, Wawanesa, CSAA, and Nationwide round out the rest of the best San Jose, CA auto insurance companies.
The chart below compares rates after we give the driver from the above example some claims, a little lower credit rating, and a few traffic violations. Due to the fact that every auto insurer has their own process to set policy rates, comparing quotes may now present a new list of the cheapest companies as shown below.
Grange now has the lowest price in San Jose, CA with Mercury, Progressive, Allstate, and GEICO now being in the top five. This example proves why it is critical to take the time to shop around when trying to find the cheapest auto insurance quotes for drivers under 21.
Insurance rates consist of many risk factors and change dramatically, so the lowest-price company the last time you checked may now be one of the more expensive options.
If you wish to get help from a professional when shopping for cheaper insurance for drivers under 21, the professional agents shown below can probably help you determine which coverages you need.
To find an agent using an interactive map, click the button after the list or click here to compare price quotes.
- HealthMarkets Insurance Agency
543 W Capitol Expy – San Jose, CA 95136 – (408) 441-7777
- All Solutions Insurance – San Jose
574 Blossom Hill Rd – San Jose, CA 95123 – (408) 225-4300
- Mission Counties Insurance Agency
1777 Hamilton Ave – San Jose, CA 95125 – (408) 979-8160