Best Cheap Car Insurance in Wisconsin for 2017

Auto Insurance, Insurance
Cheapest Car Insurance in Wisconsin

When it comes to getting cheap car insurance in Wisconsin, fortune favors the persistent. Insurance companies may offer different rates for the exact same type of policy, so comparing as many prices as possible is smart.

Your rates will also hinge on your driving history, credit score and other personal factors. To help you find the best prices, NerdWallet looked at rates from the nine largest insurers in the state and found the three lowest options for these common 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 Wisconsin

Alternative Wisconsin car insurance 

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

Cheapest for good drivers

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


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Price

  • $731/year

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Price

  • $854/year

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Price

  • $864/year

The average among the three cheapest insurers was $816 per year. American Family had the lowest average price at $731 a year, while Acuity was second at about $10 per month more.

Cheapest for young drivers

For drivers in their early 20s.


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Price

  • $534/year

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Price

  • $539/year

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Price

  • $544/year

Rates will be higher for young drivers if they carry the same amount of insurance as older drivers. But drivers in their early 20s usually have fewer assets and less savings to protect in a lawsuit and can scale back their coverage to get cheaper prices, which is reflected in our estimates.

Each of the top three insurers in our estimate delivered similar rates, but note that West Bend Mutual offers only policies that include both your car and your house or rental home. If you’d rather keep your home, condo or renters insurance with another company, or if you only want auto coverage, you’ll want to look elsewhere.

Cheapest for drivers with one at-fault accident


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Price

  • $1,025/year

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Price

  • $1,188/year

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Price

  • $1,288/year

The lowest rate we found for drivers who have caused an accident was $1,025 a year. That’s $294 higher than the cheapest rate for drivers of the same age with no accidents. West Bend Mutual, which sells only bundled policies for both auto and homeowners or renters, came in second.

If you’re worried about rate hikes after accidents, consider companies that offer accident forgiveness. This perk will keep your policy price steady after an at-fault accident, although you’ll pay a higher premium.

Cheapest for drivers with poor credit

For drivers placed in the “poor credit” tier as determined by the industry.


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Price

  • $1,150/year

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Price

  • $1,166/year

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Price

  • $1,313/year

Having poor credit can result in higher car insurance rates. This is because insurers in many states, including Wisconsin, can use a credit-based insurance score to help predict the chances that customers will file claims.

Acuity had the cheapest price at $1,150 a year, followed by West Bend Mutual, which sells only bundled policies for both auto and homeowners or renters.

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

  • $598/year

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Price

  • $667/year

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Price

  • $734/year

Retired drivers can often steer clear of the steepest rates since they drive infrequently compared with those who commute daily. To reflect this, we looked at rates for retirees who drove half as many annual miles as the other groups.

American Family had the best rate at $598 a year, followed by State Farm and West Bend Mutual, the latter of which only sells auto policies if they’re bundled with homeowners or renters insurance.

Minimum car insurance requirements in Wisconsin

Wisconsin requires drivers to carry liability insurance and uninsured motorist bodily injury coverage (UMBI) in the following amounts:

  • $25,000 bodily injury liability per person
  • $50,000 bodily injury liability per accident
  • $10,000 property damage liability per accident
  • $25,000 UMBI per person
  • $50,000 UMBI per accident

Liability insurance kicks in to cover others’ property damage and injury treatment, up to your limit, if you cause an accident.

If you’re ever struck by a driver who lacks car insurance, UMBI will cover your injuries plus those of your passengers, also up to your limit.

Keep in mind that the required amounts of insurance may not be enough to fully cover others’ damages or your own. In most cases, it’s wise to choose limits above the legal minimum and consider adding common optional coverages such as collision and comprehensive insurance.

See more state required car insurance.

Alternative Wisconsin car insurance

If you’re unable to purchase auto insurance on the voluntary market because of DUIs, at-fault accidents, poor credit or other circumstances, you can apply for coverage through the Wisconsin Automobile Insurance Plan.

For more help sorting through the companies in your area and finding the most competitive car insurance rates, 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 Wisconsin for 2017

CategoryCheapest option
Good driversAmerican Family
Young driversWest Bend
Drivers with one at-fault crashState Farm
Drivers with poor creditAcuity
Retired driversAmerican Family

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

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