Average Cost of Car Insurance

Average Car Insurance Cost

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The Average Cost of Insurance in Massachusetts

Massachusetts requires that all licensed drivers carry a standard amount of insurance on the vehicles that they drive whether they are leased or owned. Financed vehicles will also require additional insurance by the financing company to protect the value of the vehicle. Once you have paid it off, you can drop down to state minimum requirements, but you must understand that this amount may not be enough to cover the full cost of an accident. In Massachusetts, the minimum requirements are:

Average Cost of Auto Insurance in Massachussets

  • $20,000 per person for personal injury/$40,000 per accident
  • $5,000 for property damage
  • $20,000 for uninsured/under insured bodily injury protection per person.
  • $800 for personal injury protection

Massachusetts is a no fault state, which means that blame does not have to be assigned after an accident has occurred. This also means that some of the rights and abilities to sue another party are restricted or given up.

How Massachusetts Stacks Up

The national average for an insurance policy is $1,790. A resident of Massachusetts can expect to pay less than that at roughly $1,113 for their insurance. There are dozens of factors that can raise or lower personal insurance rates, however, and it is wise to investigate insurance costs when buying a new policy and whenever there are any changes that could impact coverage. One of the reasons that insurance in the state is lower than the national average may be the fact that the numbers for accidents, including those with fatalities or serious injuries, have been dropping in recent years. From calendar year 2008 there were 136,384 total accidents with 3,747 serious injuries and 363 fatalities. Of these deaths, many are teens.

Teens and Driving in Massachusetts

Statistically, two out of every five teen deaths are directly related to a motor vehicle accident either as the driver or a passenger. For the 16-19 year old age group, the risk of crashes is at its highest. Most scary of all, more than 30 percent of all 16 year old drivers will be involved in a serious crash.

To reduce some of the tragedies surrounding young drivers and to keep insurance costs affordable, Massachusetts has a number of laws in place.  The most important of these, the junior license program, has been in effect since 1998. The requirements for the junior license include:

  • The driver must hold a valid driving permit for at least six months.
  • he or she must complete a driver’s education program that is meant to include 30 hours in the classroom, 12 hours of driving and six hours of observation from the back seat.
  • The driver’s parent or guardian must complete a two-hour driving course as well.
  • The young driver must log 40 hours of practice driving with the parent or guardian. This is reduced to 30 hours if the driver’s ed program has enough practice driving.
  • An actual driver’s license is not issued until the age of 18.

In addition, there are a number of restrictions that are imposed on the young driver that are meant to keep them safe. These restrictions include the hours that the driver is allowed to be behind the wheel and how many passengers can be in the car. Parents can also play a major role in the safety of their young drivers by setting and enforcing strict rules related to the behaviors of their children when they are out driving.

How to Reduce Your Insurance Costs

Adults can save on their own insurance costs by using some of the guidelines given to the teens, including not using their cell phones while driving, paying close attention to their speed and their following distance, and using extra caution during foul weather or low light situations. Other factors that can increase or decrease insurance costs include credit history, type of car that is covered, number of miles that are driven every year and even the job that you have. Keeping a clean driving record can help save you from rising insurance costs by showing that you are a good risk.

Before buying or leasing a new car, it is important to check the price of insuring it, especially if you are going to be using financing for that purchase. Finance companies require additional insurance that goes beyond the state minimum. That additional insurance can make the cost of the car far higher than you can comfortably afford. Until the car is paid off, you will typically be required to carry this extra insurance.