NEW YORK — March 31, 2021- A new report from shows that U.S. drivers, on average, pay $1,674/year for car insurance. However, premiums can vary drastically depending on where drivers live across the country and their driving habits. The True Cost of Auto Insurance Report shows states and metros where drivers are paying the largest and smallest percentage of their income towards car insurance in 2021.

 Metro Statistical Area (MSA)% of Household Income Spent on Car InsuranceAverage Premium
Least Expensive Metros Boston1%$1,325
Washington D.C.2%$1,659
Most Expensive Metros Tampa5%$2,700

For an interactive map and to see the full report please click here.

The True Cost of Auto Insurance Report also offers insight into the added cost drivers pay when they are faced with certain life events. For example, drivers whose credit rating drops from ‘good’ to ‘poor’ in Detroit can pay an additional $5,465/year for their auto insurance vs. the additional $66/year that drivers in Los Angeles will pay for the same credit change.

Life EventAdded Cost to Premium in MostExpensive MetroAdded Cost to Premium in LeastExpensive Metro
Credit score decreases from ‘good’ to ‘poor’Detroit – $5,465Los Angeles $66
Receives a speeding ticketCharlotte – $705New York – $384
Involved in a car accidentLos Angeles – $1,842New York – $749
Has a lapse in auto insurance coveragePhoenix – $315San Francisco – $62
Convicted of a DUICharlotte – $4,183Tampa – $1,305
Adds a teenage driver to policyDetroit – $4,792Minneapolis – $1,708

“Drivers in certain parts of the country are paying considerably more for their auto insurance especially after certain life events,” says Stephen Kates, CFP and Insurance Analyst for “Knowing the added cost that comes along with a speeding ticket or adding a teen driver, for example, can reinforce safe driving habits and help consumers financially prepare for changes coming in the future.”


Bankrate’s study of the true cost of auto insurance evaluated 2021 rates across more than 35,000 ZIP codes. To understand the true cost of auto insurance for drivers, Bankrate analyzed the effect of multiple variables when added to the base profile. Quoted rates are based on a 40-year-old male and female driver with a clean driving record and good credit, driving a 2019 Toyota Camry, and full coverage (100/300/50 liability, collision, and comprehensive). These are sample rates and should be used for comparative purposes only. Your quotes may be different. For the full methodology click here.

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