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Best Cheap Car Insurance in Montana for 2019

Jan. 2, 2019
Auto Insurance, Insurance
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Finding the cheapest Montana car insurance can be challenging. Insurance costs vary depending on age, gender, ZIP code and other factors.

To help make sense of the madness and simplify your shopping, NerdWallet researched the cheapest car insurance options in the state for several driver types.

Cheapest for good drivers

Safeco had the best auto insurance rates we found in Montana for good drivers with clean credit histories, at $55 per month, on average. State Farm and Farmers Union came in second and third, respectively.

InsurerAverage price Get your rate
*Farmers Union is not rated because there is not enough data to compare it to larger companies.
3.5 NerdWallet rating

$661/year

$55/month


4.0 NerdWallet rating

$865/year

$72/month



NerdWallet rating: *Not rated

$1,433/year

$119/month


For this calculation, NerdWallet averaged rates for 40-year-old men and women with a clean driving record and good credit. With the exception of age, a large portion of drivers are closest to this profile, which carries standard "full coverage" insurance, including state-required coverage.

Cheapest for drivers with poor credit

Safeco was the cheapest car insurance carrier we found for Montana drivers with spotty credit, at $55 per month, on average. That’s the same average price as the company had for drivers with good credit, signalling Safeco may not penalize for poor credit in Montana. State Farm and Farmers Union also make the list.

InsurerAverage price Get your rate
*Farmers Union is not rated because there is not enough data to compare it to larger companies.
3.5 NerdWallet rating

$661/year

$55/month


4.0 NerdWallet rating

$1,855/year

$155/month



NerdWallet rating: *Not rated

$2,521/year

$210/month


Poor credit can have a bigger effect on car insurance premiums than even a DUI conviction or a recent accident. To calculate these figures, NerdWallet averaged rates for 40-year-olds with a clean driving record, poor credit as reported to their insurer, and standard "full coverage" insurance.

Cheapest for drivers with one at-fault crash

State Farm was the cheapest insurer we found in Montana for drivers with a recent at-fault wreck, at $84 per month, on average. Safeco and Farmers Union round out the cheapest three.

InsurerAverage price Get your rate
*Farmers Union is not rated because there is not enough data to compare it to larger companies.
4.0 NerdWallet rating

$1,010/year

$84/month


3.5 NerdWallet rating

$1,254/year

$105/month



NerdWallet rating: *Not rated

$2,308/year

$192/month


To get these figures, we averaged rates for 40-year-olds with one recent at-fault crash and the typical "full coverage" insurance. Your rates will remain high for three to five years after you cause an accident or have a moving violation. If you fall into this category, be sure to shop for new insurance rates just after the three-year and five-year anniversaries of your infraction.

Cheapest for low-mileage drivers

Safeco had the best rates we saw for Montanans who drive few annual miles, at $51 per month, on average. State Farm and Farmers Union had the next-cheapest average rates.

InsurerAverage price Get your rate
*Farmers Union is not rated because there is not enough data to compare it to larger companies.
3.5 NerdWallet rating

$614/year

$51/month


4.0 NerdWallet rating

$758/year

$63/month



NerdWallet rating: *Not rated

$1,433/year

$119/month


Whether you're retired, work at home or often use public transportation, you may be able to get cheaper car insurance simply because you drive less. The rates above are for 40-year-olds with typical "full coverage" insurance and a clean driving record who drive 5,000 miles per year instead of the standard 12,000.

Cheapest for minimum coverage

Safeco was the cheapest carrier for minimum coverage auto insurance in Montana, at $16 per month, on average. State Farm and Farmers Union were second- and third-cheapest, respectively.

InsurerAverage price Get your rate
*Farmers Union is not rated because there is not enough data to compare it to larger companies.
3.5 NerdWallet rating

$194/year

$16/month


4.0 NerdWallet rating

$286/year

$24/month



NerdWallet rating: *Not rated

$358/year

$30/month


We calculated these numbers by averaging rates for 40-year-old good drivers who have only the minimum mandatory insurance in their state. Such light coverage isn't typically recommended, since it might not cover all the bills resulting from a car accident, but it's better than nothing — especially if you can't afford much more.

Cheap for military families


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

If you’re an active member of the military or a veteran — or have an immediate family member who is — chances are good you’ll get a cheaper-than-average rate with USAA, an option that isn’t available to the general public. For that reason, we don’t rank it within the categories above, but USAA is the cheapest auto insurance option for almost every driver type above.

Minimum required auto insurance in Montana

Montana drivers are required to carry liability insurance, which helps cover others’ injury costs or property damage if you’re at fault in an accident.

The minimum limits are:

  • $25,000 bodily injury liability per person.
  • $50,000 bodily injury liability per accident.
  • $20,000 property damage liability per accident.

While this will allow you to drive legally, experts suggest getting more than the bare minimum to be better protected in Big Sky Country. For instance, a single at-fault accident could easily leave you owing more than $20,000 in repairs, and you’d be stuck paying the difference out of pocket.

You may also want to consider common optional coverages such as comprehensive coverage, which helps replace your car if it’s stolen, or uninsured motorist protection, which helps cover your medical treatment if you’re hit by a driver who lacks insurance.

Check out NerdWallet’s guide to state car insurance requirements for more details on the required and optional parts of your Montana auto policy.

Alternative car insurance in Montana

Drivers who try and fail to buy car insurance through the open market could qualify for coverage through the Montana Automobile Insurance Plan.

For personalized auto insurance quotes, use NerdWallet’s anonymous car insurance comparison tool to view estimates from top insurers side-by-side and possibly save hundreds.

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

Cheapest car insurance in Montana

CategoryCheapest option
Good driversSafeco
Drivers with poor creditSafeco
Drivers with one at-fault accidentState Farm
Low-mileage driversSafeco
Minimum coverageSafeco
Cheap for military familiesUSAA
For our base-profile driver with good credit and a clean driving history, NerdWallet averaged rates from the largest insurers for 40-year-old men and women in 20 ZIP codes. The policy includes:

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

We used the same assumptions for all other driver profiles, with the following exceptions:

  • For drivers with poor credit, we adjusted the credit tier from “good” to “poor.”
  • For drivers with one at-fault crash, we added a single at-fault crash.
  • For low-mileage drivers, we adjusted the miles driven from 12,000 per year to 5,000.
  • For drivers with minimum coverage, we adjusted the numbers above to reflect minimum required coverage by law in the state.

We used a 2015 Toyota Camry in all cases. These are rates generated through Quadrant Information Services. Your own rates will be different.

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