Best Cheap Car Insurance in Colorado for 2017

Auto Insurance, Insurance

Car insurance rates can fluctuate greatly from one insurance company to the next and depending on personal factors such as your age, ZIP code, driving record and credit history.

To help you narrow the field and find the cheapest car insurance in Colorado, we researched rates from the nine largest insurers in the state and found the most affordable options for these categories:

Good drivers

Young drivers

Drivers with one at-fault crash

Drivers with poor credit

Retired drivers

Drivers with a military connection

ALSO IN THIS ARTICLE

Minimum car insurance requirements in Colorado

Alternative car insurance in Colorado

» FIND YOUR MATCH: Who’s the cheapest carrier for you?

Cheapest for good drivers

For drivers with no at-fault accidents, DUIs or moving violations.


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price

  • $1,124/year

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price

  • $1,156/year

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price

  • $1,338/year

Among the three cheapest car insurance options in Colorado for good drivers, American Family notched the best deal at roughly $94 per month, followed by State Farm and Farmers. Even if you have a sparkling driving record, it’s wise to compare rates among several insurers. We found that rates for good drivers varied by more than $1,000 in Colorado among the companies we compared.

Cheapest for young drivers

For drivers in their early 20s.


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price

  • $630/year

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price

  • $645/year

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price

  • $698/year

Young drivers are less likely than older ones to have large assets that would be at risk in a lawsuit. Thus they can often get by with less coverage and enjoy lower rates.

We gathered quotes for drivers in their 20s carrying the minimum coverage required in Colorado. Farmers led the field with an average price of $630 per year, or about $53 a month, with Safeco and State Farm not far behind.

Cheapest for drivers with one at-fault crash


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price

  • $1,352/year

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price

  • $1,648/year

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price

  • $1,720/year

An at-fault accident often triggers a rate increase on your car insurance, either at renewal time or when you decide to shop for a new policy.

The cheapest average quote we found for a driver with one accident was $1,352 a year from State Farm — more than $200 higher than the best deal available to drivers of the same age with clean records. There was a fairly steep price increase, almost $300, between State Farm and the next lowest option, Farmers.

The most expensive quote for drivers with an accident in Colorado was about $3,400 a year, meaning there’s still plenty of reason to compare several rates even if you have a blemished record.

Cheapest for drivers with poor credit

For drivers placed in the “Poor Credit” tier.


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price

  • $1,809/year

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price

  • $2,132/year

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price

  • $2,572/year

Colorado car insurance companies can use your credit as a factor in determining rates, and those with poor credit will typically end up facing higher prices. For example, the cheapest average quote we found for this group was $1,809 a year from American Family. That’s almost $700 more than the lowest estimate we found for good drivers of the same age with no credit problems. Both State Farm and Farmers had rates above $2,000 a year.

In fact, poor credit can be one of the biggest obstacles to finding cheap car insurance in Colorado. For most of the companies we looked at, having poor credit resulted in higher rates than having an at-fault car accident on your record.

Cheapest for retired drivers

For drivers in their mid- to late 60s who no longer use their car for commuting.


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price

  • $890/year

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price

  • $923/year

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price

  • $1,232/year

Low annual mileage is a big plus in getting cheap car insurance in Colorado, which explains why retired drivers can get some of the best rates.

We researched rates for drivers in their 60s who travel half as much as the other groups we sampled. American Family had the cheapest average quote at $890 a year. This was more than $200 cheaper than the lowest rate for good drivers who are half that age and who commute by car.

Cheapest if you have a military connection


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Get a quote USAA is available only to active military members, veterans and their families.

If you’re an active member of the military or a veteran — or have an immediate family member who is — you’ll get a relatively low rate with USAA, a company unavailable to the general public. USAA was the cheapest option overall for every category listed above.

Minimum car insurance requirements in Colorado

Colorado drivers are required to carry liability insurance, which helps pay for others’ injuries or property damage if you’re responsible for a crash.

The minimum coverage levels you must buy in Colorado are:

  • $25,000 bodily injury liability per person.
  • $50,000 bodily injury liability per accident.
  • $15,000 property damage liability per accident.

But it’s often best to buy more than the bare minimum to avoid being left vulnerable to lawsuits or major accident bills. You also want to consider other coverage types such as collision and comprehensive, which pay for damage to or theft of your own car.

Check out NerdWallet’s guide to state car insurance requirements.

Alternative car insurance in Colorado

Colorado is one of several states that make up the Western Association of Automobile Insurance Plans. Drivers who can’t get coverage on the open market because of past crashes or other factors can apply through the WAAIP to get insurance.

For more help finding Colorado car insurance at the most competitive price, try NerdWallet’s comparison shopping tool.

Here’s a summary of where you’ll find the cheapest car insurance in Colorado, by category:

Cheapest car insurance in Colorado

CategoryCheapest option
Good driversAmerican Family
Young drivers
Farmers
Drivers with one at-fault crash
State Farm
Drivers with poor creditAmerican Family
Retired drivers American Family
Drivers with a military connectionUSAA

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

Updated Jan. 11, 2017.


METHODOLOGY

For most categories, NerdWallet averaged rates for 30-year-old men and women in 10 ZIP codes and with the following coverage limits:

  • $100,000 bodily injury liability coverage per person.
  • $300,000 bodily injury liability coverage per accident.
  • $50,000 property damage liability coverage per accident.
  • $100,000 uninsured motorist bodily injury coverage per person.
  • $300,000 uninsured motorist bodily injury coverage per accident.
  • Collision coverage with $1,000 deductible.
  • Comprehensive coverage with $1,000 deductible.

We used a 2013 Toyota Camry in all cases. Our sample retired driver was age 67 and drove 50% fewer annual miles than other groups. Our sample young driver was age 22 and carried the minimum required coverage levels. These are sample rates generated through Quadrant Information Services. Your own rates will be different.

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