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Best Cheap Car Insurance in North Carolina for 2021

April 23, 2021
Auto Insurance, Insurance
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Drivers looking for cheap car insurance in North Carolina can save by shopping around. Prices differ from one company to the next, and depend on personal factors such as whether you’ve caused car accidents.

To help you compare rates in the Tar Heel State, NerdWallet analyzed quotes from 16 auto insurance companies in North Carolina and found the five cheapest options for several driver types.

Cheapest car insurance in North Carolina for 20-year-old drivers

Young drivers may have to get a lot of quotes to find cheap car insurance. Prices can be sky-high for younger 20-somethings, but tend to come down as drivers get more experience on the road. To cut down on costs, young drivers might want to consider buying only state-mandated coverage, rather than full coverage insurance. Still, some companies routinely have lower insurance rates for drivers in their 20s, so it's best to shop around to find them.

Many insurance companies offer ways for young drivers to save, such as good student discounts for those in college or premium reductions for those who take a defensive driving course. If you live in an apartment, consider getting your renters and auto insurance from the same company to take advantage of bundling discounts.

Cheapest full coverage car insurance in North Carolina for 20-year-olds

Drivers in North Carolina with clean driving records may want to consider the following companies, which had the lowest average rates:

  1. Geico: $871 per year.
  2. North Carolina Farm Bureau: $1,017 per year.
  3. Penn National: $1,288 per year.
  4. MetLife: $1,393 per year.
  5. Progressive: $1,425 per year.

Cheapest minimum coverage car insurance in North Carolina for 20-year-olds

Drivers in North Carolina who want just the state minimum coverage may want to check with these companies, which had the lowest average rates:

  1. Geico: $296 per year.
  2. North Carolina Farm Bureau: $351 per year.
  3. Penn National: $443 per year.
  4. MetLife: $458 per year.
  5. Progressive: $488 per year.

Cheapest auto insurance in North Carolina for 20-year-olds with poor credit

Drivers with poor credit in North Carolina should look at the following insurers with the lowest average rates for minimum coverage:

  1. MetLife: $458 per year.
  2. Penn National: $479 per year.
  3. Progressive: $488 per year.
  4. Geico: $505 per year.
  5. North Carolina Farm Bureau: $556 per year.

Cheapest auto insurance in North Carolina for 20-year-old drivers with one at-fault crash

For drivers with a recent accident in North Carolina, here are the companies with the lowest average rates for minimum coverage:

  1. North Carolina Farm Bureau: $559 per year.
  2. Geico: $647 per year.
  3. MetLife: $707 per year.
  4. Penn National: $788 per year.
  5. Progressive: $788 per year.

Cheapest auto insurance in North Carolina for 20-year-old drivers after a DUI

The cheapest auto insurance we found after a DUI is shown here, alongside the insurers’ average rates for minimum coverage.

  1. North Carolina Farm Bureau: $470 per year.
  2. Penn National: $660 per year.
  3. Progressive: $660 per year.
  4. Erie: $717 per year.
  5. Allstate: $975 per year.

Cheapest car insurance in North Carolina for 30-year-old drivers

By the time they reach their 30s, most drivers enjoy cheaper car insurance rates than in their teens and 20s. Still, factors like a person’s driving record and car make and model can increase prices.

Drivers in their 30s can get lower rates by shopping around and taking advantage of car insurance discounts. You may be able to save by insuring multiple vehicles with the same carrier, or by bundling your auto policy with your home insurance. Also, keep an eye out for discounts based on your profession or affiliations; some insurers offer more affordable insurance rates for teachers, members of the military or alumni of certain colleges.

Cheapest full coverage car insurance in North Carolina for 30-year-olds

Drivers in North Carolina with clean driving records may get the lowest rates from these companies:

  1. Geico: $726 per year.
  2. North Carolina Farm Bureau: $1,011 per year.
  3. State Farm: $1,018 per year.
  4. Erie: $1,073 per year.
  5. Nationwide: $1,286 per year.

Cheapest minimum coverage car insurance in North Carolina for 30-year-olds

Drivers in North Carolina who want their state’s minimum coverage can check with the following companies, which had the lowest average rates:

  1. Geico: $248 per year.
  2. North Carolina Farm Bureau: $351 per year.
  3. State Farm: $362 per year.
  4. Erie: $371 per year.
  5. Nationwide: $440 per year.

Cheapest auto insurance in North Carolina for 30-year-olds with poor credit

Drivers with poor credit in North Carolina should consider the following companies with the lowest average rates for full coverage:

  1. Geico: $1,134 per year.
  2. Erie: $1,198 per year.
  3. MetLife: $1,393 per year.
  4. Penn National: $1,398 per year.
  5. Progressive: $1,425 per year.

Cheapest auto insurance in North Carolina for 30-year-old drivers with one at-fault crash

For drivers in North Carolina with a recent accident, here are the lowest average rate options for full coverage:

  1. North Carolina Farm Bureau: $1,588 per year.
  2. State Farm: $1,663 per year.
  3. Erie: $1,743 per year.
  4. Geico: $1,925 per year.
  5. MetLife: $2,136 per year.

Cheapest auto insurance in North Carolina for 30-year-old drivers after a DUI

For the cheapest auto insurance after a DUI, we found the following options for full coverage.

  1. North Carolina Farm Bureau: $1,341 per year.
  2. Erie: $1,466 per year.
  3. Nationwide: $1,752 per year.
  4. Penn National: $1,902 per year.
  5. Progressive: $1,902 per year.

Cheapest car insurance in North Carolina for 40-year-old drivers

Drivers in their 40s tend to have better insurance rates than their younger counterparts but still pay more than older age groups. Shopping around for cheap car insurance quotes with multiple insurers is the best way to find lower rates. Good drivers who don’t get behind the wheel often might want to consider pay-per-mile insurance, which charges drivers by how many miles they drive.

Ask about discounts for signing up for autopay, paying your premium in full rather than quarterly or monthly, and opting for electronic statements. If you own your home, consider insuring it with the company that provides your auto insurance; most carriers offer bundling discounts.

Cheapest full coverage car insurance in North Carolina for 40-year-olds

Drivers in North Carolina with clean driving records may want to think about the following companies, which had the lowest average rates:

  1. Geico: $733 per year.
  2. State Farm: $912 per year.
  3. North Carolina Farm Bureau: $1,011 per year.
  4. Erie: $1,027 per year.
  5. Nationwide: $1,263 per year.

Cheapest minimum coverage car insurance in North Carolina for 40-year-olds

Drivers in North Carolina who want just the minimum coverage may want to check prices from these companies, which had the lowest average rates:

  1. Geico: $253 per year.
  2. State Farm: $325 per year.
  3. North Carolina Farm Bureau: $351 per year.
  4. Erie: $355 per year.
  5. Nationwide: $434 per year.

Cheapest auto insurance in North Carolina for 40-year-olds with poor credit

Drivers with poor credit in North Carolina can check out the following insurers with the lowest average rates for full coverage:

  1. Erie: $1,149 per year.
  2. Geico: $1,213 per year.
  3. MetLife: $1,393 per year.
  4. Penn National: $1,398 per year.
  5. Progressive: $1,425 per year.

Cheapest auto insurance in North Carolina for 40-year-old drivers with one at-fault crash

For drivers with a recent accident living in North Carolina, here are the companies with the lowest average rates for full coverage:

  1. State Farm: $1,485 per year.
  2. North Carolina Farm Bureau: $1,588 per year.
  3. Erie: $1,667 per year.
  4. Geico: $1,954 per year.
  5. MetLife: $2,136 per year.

Cheapest auto insurance in North Carolina for 40-year-old drivers after a DUI

The cheapest full coverage auto insurance we found for drivers with a DUI came from the following companies.

  1. North Carolina Farm Bureau: $1,341 per year.
  2. Erie: $1,402 per year.
  3. Nationwide: $1,719 per year.
  4. Penn National: $1,902 per year.
  5. Progressive: $1,902 per year.

Cheapest car insurance in North Carolina for 50-year-old drivers

Drivers in their 50s have, on average, cheaper auto insurance rates than most other age groups. Prices will continue to drop as they inch toward their 60s and gain more driving experience. Rates can still vary depending on other factors such as a driver’s gender and location, so it’s smart to shop around to find the cheapest price you can. Our list of the best cheap car insurance companies is a good place to start.

Some insurers offer senior discounts to policyholders in their 50s, though some may require you to take a defensive driving course to snag the savings. If you’ve been with your insurer for many years, you may qualify for a loyalty discount. Still, it’s a good idea to check with other companies periodically to make sure you’re not paying too much.

Cheapest full coverage car insurance in North Carolina for 50-year-olds

Drivers in North Carolina with clean driving records may want to get quotes from these insurers, which had the lowest average rates:

  1. Geico: $769 per year.
  2. State Farm: $851 per year.
  3. North Carolina Farm Bureau: $974 per year.
  4. Erie: $978 per year.
  5. Nationwide: $1,207 per year.

Cheapest minimum coverage car insurance in North Carolina for 50-year-olds

Drivers in North Carolina who opt for the state minimum coverage may want to consider the following companies, with the lowest average rates:

  1. Geico: $265 per year.
  2. State Farm: $304 per year.
  3. North Carolina Farm Bureau: $339 per year.
  4. Erie: $348 per year.
  5. Nationwide: $423 per year.

Cheapest auto insurance in North Carolina for 50-year-olds with poor credit

Drivers with poor credit in North Carolina can check with the following companies, which showed the lowest average rates for full coverage:

  1. Erie: $1,094 per year.
  2. Geico: $1,277 per year.
  3. MetLife: $1,393 per year.
  4. Penn National: $1,398 per year.
  5. Progressive: $1,425 per year.

Cheapest auto insurance in North Carolina for 50-year-old drivers with one at-fault crash

For drivers living in North Carolina with a recent accident, here are the insurers with the lowest average full coverage rates:

  1. State Farm: $1,380 per year.
  2. North Carolina Farm Bureau: $1,528 per year.
  3. Erie: $1,586 per year.
  4. Geico: $2,013 per year.
  5. MetLife: $2,136 per year.

Cheapest auto insurance in North Carolina for 50-year-old drivers after a DUI

The cheapest auto insurance we found for drivers with a recent DUI comes from the following companies, listed with rates for full coverage.

  1. North Carolina Farm Bureau: $1,291 per year.
  2. Erie: $1,335 per year.
  3. Nationwide: $1,641 per year.
  4. Penn National: $1,902 per year.
  5. Progressive: $1,902 per year.

Cheapest car insurance in North Carolina for 65-year-old drivers

Although 65-year-olds have cheaper car insurance rates than many other age groups on average, prices will start increasing as they get older. To find cheap auto insurance for seniors, drivers in their mid-60s should shop around to find the lowest rate.

Drivers in this age group should also take advantage of any available discounts for senior citizens. For example, some companies will discount your rate if you take a defensive driving course. You may also be able to save money after retirement if you’re driving fewer miles each year.

Finally, consider whether you need all the coverage you currently have. If you’re not commuting to work each day, for instance, you may not need rental reimbursement coverage when your own car is in the shop for repairs.

Cheapest full coverage car insurance in North Carolina for 65-year-olds

Drivers in North Carolina with clean driving records may want to think about getting quotes from these companies, which had the lowest average rates:

  1. Geico: $700 per year.
  2. State Farm: $895 per year.
  3. Erie: $1,001 per year.
  4. North Carolina Farm Bureau: $1,002 per year.
  5. Nationwide: $1,165 per year.

Cheapest minimum coverage car insurance in North Carolina for 65-year-olds

Drivers in North Carolina who want just the state minimum coverage may want to check with these insurers, which had the lowest average rates:

  1. Geico: $278 per year.
  2. State Farm: $319 per year.
  3. North Carolina Farm Bureau: $348 per year.
  4. Erie: $367 per year.
  5. Nationwide: $418 per year.

Cheapest auto insurance in North Carolina for 65-year-olds with poor credit

Drivers with poor credit in North Carolina can look at the following companies with the lowest average rates for full coverage:

  1. Erie: $1,120 per year.
  2. Geico: $1,231 per year.
  3. MetLife: $1,383 per year.
  4. Penn National: $1,398 per year.
  5. Progressive: $1,425 per year.

Cheapest auto insurance in North Carolina for 65-year-old drivers with one at-fault crash

For drivers with a recent accident living in North Carolina, here are the companies with the lowest average rates for full coverage:

  1. State Farm: $1,454 per year.
  2. North Carolina Farm Bureau: $1,573 per year.
  3. Erie: $1,626 per year.
  4. Geico: $1,980 per year.
  5. Nationwide: $2,061 per year.

Cheapest auto insurance in North Carolina for 65-year-old drivers after a DUI

The cheapest auto insurance we found after a DUI came from the following companies, shown with their average rates for full coverage.

  1. North Carolina Farm Bureau: $1,328 per year.
  2. Erie: $1,368 per year.
  3. Nationwide: $1,583 per year.
  4. Penn National: $1,902 per year.
  5. Progressive: $1,902 per year.

Minimum auto insurance limits required in North Carolina

North Carolina requires drivers to carry liability insurance, uninsured motorist bodily injury coverage (UMBI) and uninsured motorist property damage coverage (UMPD) in the following amounts:

  • $30,000 bodily injury liability per person.
  • $60,000 bodily injury liability per accident.
  • $25,000 property damage liability per accident.
  • $30,000 UMBI per person.
  • $60,000 UMBI per accident.
  • $25,000 UMPD per accident.

Liability car insurance covers the cost of any damage, injuries or deaths you cause in a car accident, up to your policy’s predefined limits.

Uninsured motorist coverage will cover expenses from injuries or damage after an accident with a driver who doesn’t have car insurance. Underinsured motorist coverage will cover the same expenses if you’re hit by a driver with some car insurance, but not enough to cover all costs from the crash.

While this will satisfy legal requirements, the bare minimum may not provide the soundest financial protection. If you cause a severe crash with someone driving a luxury car, for instance, you could easily owe more than $25,000 in vehicle repairs. And if you carry only the minimum limits, you’d pay any extra costs.

Check out NerdWallet’s guide to state car insurance requirements for more details on what each coverage type pays for.

Alternative car insurance for high-risk drivers

Drivers who are denied car insurance on the voluntary market — because of poor credit, DUIs or other factors — can seek coverage through the North Carolina Reinsurance Facility.

Budget-conscious shoppers can also use NerdWallet to find cheap car insurance in North Carolina. Try our car insurance comparison tool from the state’s largest insurers

Methodology

For our “good driver” profile, NerdWallet averaged insurance estimates from an average of 14 insurers in each state and Washington, D.C., for single male and female drivers with good credit and no tickets or violations. The analysis included 5-10 of the largest insurance companies in each state; smaller insurers were also included when rates were available. Liberty Mutual and its subsidiaries were excluded from our analysis as rates were not available.

For full coverage policies, we used the following coverage limits:

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

In states where required, minimum additional coverages were added. Some policies include additional coverages at the insurer’s discretion.

  • We used a 2018 Toyota Camry L for all drivers and assumed 12,000 annual miles driven.
  • We analyzed rates for drivers 20 to 80 years old in five-year increments.

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

  • For drivers with minimum coverage, we adjusted the numbers above to reflect minimum required coverage by law in the state.
  • We changed the credit tier from “good” to “poor” as reported to the insurer to see rates for drivers with poor credit.
  • For drivers with one at-fault crash, we added a single at-fault crash that happened six months ago, resulting in $10,000 in property damage and no bodily injury claim.
  • For drivers with a DUI, we added a single drunken driving violation that happened six months ago.

These are rates generated through Quadrant Information Services. Your own rates will be different.

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