Shopping around for quotes from several companies is crucial if you want to find cheap car insurance in New Mexico. The price your friends and neighbors pay will differ from your own rate, thanks to factors such as your age, location and driving history.
To help reduce some of your legwork, NerdWallet gathered rates from the five largest auto insurers in the state and found the cheapest options for these categories:
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Cheapest for good drivers
For drivers with no at-fault crashes, DUIs or moving violations.
Among the three cheapest companies, the average price for good drivers was $1,154 per year, or roughly $96 a month. Geico led the pack with the lowest quote overall, followed by State Farm and Progressive. Monthly rates among these companies were all within $8 of one another.
It’s smart to check into available discounts before deciding on an insurer.
Cheapest for young drivers
For drivers in their early 20s.
Drivers in their early 20s typically won’t have much savings to lose if they’re sued over a car crash, so they can often get by with less coverage than older motorists and snag cheaper rates as a result.
We looked at quotes for young drivers carrying the minimum required coverage levels. Geico offered the best quote at $513 per year. This was almost $600 less than the cheapest rate we found for 30-year-old good drivers who had full coverage. State Farm and Progressive rounded out the list of most affordable options for this group.
Cheapest for drivers with one at-fault crash
Causing a crash usually triggers an increase in car insurance rates, either when you renew with your current company or when you shop around for a new policy.
If you’ve caused a crash, State Farm merits consideration in New Mexico. The company offered by far the cheapest average quote for drivers who have caused a crash, at $1,250 per year. This was $147 more than the cheapest quote we found for drivers with no crashes. The next lowest rate, $2,224 from Geico, was $974 higher than that of State Farm and more than double the best rate for accident-free motorists.
Cheapest for drivers with poor credit
For drivers placed in the “Poor Credit” tier.
To insurers, credit problems are a sign that customers are more likely to make future claims. This explains why those with poor credit tend to have trouble finding cheap car insurance in New Mexico.
Geico had the lowest average rate in our analysis at $1,663 per year. That’s $560 higher than the best deal we found for drivers with no credit issues, and $413 more than the cheapest rate for drivers with an at-fault crash. Drivers with poor credit should shop around to make sure they avoid even higher rates. The steepest quote we found for this group was nearly $3,000 per year.
Cheapest for retired drivers
For drivers in their mid- to late 60s who no longer use their cars for commuting.
Retirees can usually find relatively cheap car insurance in New Mexico, thanks to their reduced time behind the wheel compared with other motorists.
We collected sample rates for drivers in their 60s who travel half as many miles in a year as other groups. State Farm notched the cheapest average quote at $934 per year — $169 less than the best deal for drivers less than half that age who commute every day.
Cheapest for drivers with a military connection
If you’re a military member or a veteran — or have an immediate family member who is — chances are you’ll score a relatively affordable rate with USAA, a company that’s not available to the general public. In fact, USAA returned the best rate for every driver type above. USAA customers also benefit from the insurer’s well-regarded customer service.
Minimum car insurance requirements in New Mexico
New Mexico requires drivers to carry liability insurance, which covers others’ injury treatment and property damage if you’re at fault in a crash.
You must select at least the following minimum liability limits:
- $25,000 bodily injury liability per person.
- $50,000 bodily injury liability per crash.
- $10,000 property damage liability per crash.
Most drivers can benefit from choosing more than the bare minimum because a crash could easily result in damages that surpass the amounts above. Also consider other coverages that can strengthen your policy. For instance, liability coverage won’t pay to replace your car if it’s stolen; you’d need comprehensive coverage for that.
Read NerdWallet’s guide to minimum car insurance requirements by state for more details about coverages you may want for your New Mexico auto policy.
Alternative car insurance for high-risk drivers
If you’ve been denied car insurance on the open market — because of DUIs, crashes or other circumstances — you can apply for coverage through the New Mexico Motor Vehicle Insurance Plan.
For more help shopping for cheap car insurance in New Mexico, try NerdWallet’s car insurance comparison tool.
Here’s a summary of where you’ll find the cheapest insurance, by category:
Cheapest car insurance in New Mexico
|Drivers with one at-fault crash||State Farm|
|Drivers with poor credit||Geico|
|Retired drivers||State Farm|
For most categories, NerdWallet averaged rates for 30-year-old men and women in 10 ZIP codes and with the following coverage limits:
We used a 2013 Toyota Camry in all cases. Our sample retired driver was age 67 and drove 50% fewer annual miles than motorists in 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.
Updated May 19, 2017.
Alex Glenn is a staff writer at NerdWallet, a personal finance website. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org.