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Best Cheap Car Insurance in North Carolina for 2018

January 22, 2018
Auto Insurance, Insurance

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 the seven largest insurance companies in North Carolina and found the three cheapest options for these driver types:

Good drivers

Young drivers

Drivers with one at-fault crash

Drivers with poor credit

Retired drivers

Also in this article

Minimum car insurance requirements in North Carolina

Alternative car insurance in North Carolina

» 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

  • $777/year

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price

  • $791/year

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price

  • $924/year

The average annual rate for good drivers among the three cheapest companies was about $830. Geico was the most affordable option we found at $777 per year, which comes to roughly $65 a month. If you have no moving violations, crashes or claims, ask for safe-driver discounts to make sure you’re getting the best deal.

Cheapest for young drivers

For drivers in their early 20s.


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price

  • $390/year

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price

  • $432/year

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price

  • $559/year

Drivers in their early 20s can often get by with less coverage than older motorists, who may have more to lose in a crash-related lawsuit. We accounted for this in our analysis by looking at rates for young drivers carrying the minimum required coverage levels.

Our results showed this group can score relatively cheap car insurance in North Carolina. All three of the lowest companies notched quotes under $50 a month, with Geico at the lowest monthly price of just $33.

Cheapest for drivers with one at-fault crash


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price

  • $1,059/year

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price

  • $1,177/year

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price

  • $1,369/year

Causing a crash usually leads to paying more for car insurance, either when you renew your current policy or if you shop around.

The lowest price we found for this group was from North Carolina Farm Bureau at $1,059 per year. This was more than $280 a year higher than the cheapest quote (from Geico) for drivers of the same age with no crashes on record. State Farm and Progressive rounded out the list of the most affordable companies.

Cheapest for drivers with poor credit

For drivers placed in the “Poor Credit” tier.


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price

  • $1,189/year

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price

  • $1,223/year

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price

  • $1,224/year

Insurers in North Carolina can use your credit-based insurance score to help predict how likely you are to file claims in the future. Drivers with poor credit generally faced higher rates in our analysis than those in the “good credit” tier with similar driving histories.

In our sampling, the lowest quote for motorists with poor credit was about $99 per month from Progressive. That’s about $34 a month more than the lowest rate we found for drivers with no credit problems. Nationwide and Geico were the next cheapest options, respectively, with annual quotes just $1 apart.

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

  • $720/year

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price

  • $807/year

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price

  • $848/year

Retirees generally travel fewer miles each year than commuters, which works in their favor when it comes to finding cheap car insurance in North Carolina. Because of this, we looked at rates for drivers in their 60s who put half as many miles on the odometer as other groups.

The lowest quote we found was $720 from Progressive, followed by State Farm and Geico. If you’re over age 55, ask your insurer about earning a discount by completing a mature driver improvement course.

Minimum car insurance requirements 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.

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 tool for a side-by-side auto insurance quotes comparison from the state’s largest insurers.

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

Cheapest car insurance in North Carolina

CategoryCheapest option
Good driversGeico
Young driversGeico
Drivers with one at-fault crashNC Farm Bureau
Drivers with poor creditProgressive
Retired driversProgressive

METHODOLOGY

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

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

We used a 2014 Toyota Camry in all cases. Our sample retired driver was 67 and drove 50% fewer annual miles than other groups. Our sample young driver was 22 and carried the minimum required coverage. These are sample rates generated through Quadrant Information Services. Your own rates will be different.

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