The words “bargain” and “insurance” really shouldn’t be used together, in particular when comparison shopping for the best car insurance rates for college graduates. Because it’s not cheap, let’s get started by showing you some of the factors that impact insurance prices, and see if you can slash the price of your next policy.
Buying affordable insurance is difficult, and figuring out which insurers offer the cheapest insurance rates for college graduates will require even more work.
Every insurance company has their own process for setting rates, so to begin we’ll rank the most affordable insurance companies in California. It’s a good idea to know that California insurance rates are impacted by many factors that will increase or decrease the price of your policy. Events like turning one year older, getting married, or having an accident can trigger price changes resulting in some companies being cheaper than others.
Find Cheaper Auto Insurance for Grads
|Rank||Company||Cost Per Year|
|Quote Your Rates Go|
USAA has some of the best car insurance rates in Los Angeles at around $1,155 annually. This is $496 less than the average policy premium paid by California drivers of $1,651. Wawanesa, Century National, CSAA, and Nationwide would also make the list of some of the cheaper Los Angeles, CA auto insurance companies.
As the rates illustrate above, if you currently buy coverage from Nationwide and switched to Wawanesa, you could realize a yearly price reduction of roughly $106. Customers with 21st Century may save as much as $181 a year, and Grange policyholders might cut rates by $334 a year.
To find the cheapest rates for your vehicle, click here to start your free quote or visit several of the following companies.
Bear in mind that those estimates are averaged across all types of insureds and vehicles and are not factoring in an exact vehicle garaging location for college graduates. So the company that is best suited for you may not even be in the top 24 companies shown above. That’s why you need to get rate quotes using your own driver data and vehicle information.
The car, truck, or SUV needing coverage is one of the largest factors in finding the best car insurance for college graduates. Vehicles with high performance features, a lack of modern safety features, or a track record of large liability claims will cost much more to insure than safer, lower-performance models.
The next list shows insurance premiums for the cheaper automobiles to buy coverage for.
|Make and Model||Estimated Cost for Full Coverage|
|Jeep Wrangler Sport Islander Package 4WD 2-Dr||$2,199|
|Honda CR-V LX 2WD||$2,292|
|Volkswagen Jetta SE 2.5 Station Wagon||$2,337|
|Toyota RAV4 Sport 2WD||$2,366|
|Toyota Tacoma Double Cab 4WD||$2,411|
|Ford F-150 FX4 Super Cab 4WD||$2,420|
|Hyundai Elantra Blue 4-Dr Sedan||$2,446|
|Honda Accord EX 4-Dr Sedan||$2,453|
|Ford Escape XLS 2WD||$2,462|
|Ford Fusion SEL 4-Dr Sedan||$2,543|
|Toyota Corolla XRS||$2,536|
|Hyundai Sonata Limited 4-Dr Sedan||$2,709|
|Toyota Camry Hybrid||$2,717|
|Chevrolet Impala LT||$2,713|
|GMC Sierra SLE Crew Cab 2WD||$2,720|
|Chevrolet Malibu LT||$2,764|
|Ford Explorer Limited 2WD||$2,774|
|Nissan Altima 3.5 SR 2-Dr Coupe||$2,831|
|Chevrolet Silverado 2500HD LT Crew Cab 2WD||$2,841|
|Ford Edge Sport 2WD||$2,857|
|Honda Odyssey EX-L||$2,865|
|Dodge Ram 2500 Crew Cab SLT 2WD||$2,876|
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Premium data assumes single female driver age 50, no speeding tickets, no at-fault accidents, $1,000 deductibles, and California minimum liability limits. Discounts applied include safe-driver, claim-free, multi-policy, homeowner, and multi-vehicle. Prices do not factor in vehicle garaging location which can decrease or increase price quotes significantly.
By looking at the data, you can figure that cars like the Jeep Wrangler, Honda CR-V, Volkswagen Jetta, Toyota RAV4, and Toyota Tacoma are a few of the most budget-friendly vehicles to insure for college grads.
For college grads, one of the largest factors that aid in calculating the cost of insurance is where your residence is in Los Angeles. Cities with more crime and/or more people will most likely have higher rates, whereas areas with less congestion have the gratification of cheaper auto insurance rates.
The following table shows the priciest cities in California for college graduates to buy an auto insurance policy in. Los Angeles is listed at #2 with an annual cost of $2,104 on average, which is about $175 monthly.
|Rank||City||Premium Per Year|
|Start a Quote Go|
Rate quotes are estimated as the specific geographic location can raise or lower coverage prices noticeably.
Discounts on Los Angeles insurance
Insurers that provide coverage for college graduates may provide rate discounts that can reduce rates by as much as 40% or more if you meet the requirements. A few popular companies and their possible discounts can be read below.
- 21st Century discounts include student driver, good student, homeowners, early bird, automatic seat belts, and teen driver.
- State Farm may have discounts that include Steer Clear safe driver discount, good driver, student away at school, safe vehicle, and defensive driving training.
- AAA includes discounts for multi-policy, AAA membership discount, anti-theft, pay-in-full, multi-car, good student, and good driver.
- Liberty Mutual offers discounts for teen driver discount, preferred payment discount, new graduate, safety features, exclusive group savings, newly married, and new vehicle discount.
- Progressive has savings for homeowner, continuous coverage, online signing, multi-vehicle, and online quote discount.
The diagram below shows the difference between car insurance rates with and without discounts applied. The data is based on a female driver, no violations or claims, California state minimum liability limits, full coverage, and $250 deductibles.
The first bar for each age group shows the price with no discounts. The second shows the rates with claim-free, accident-free, safe-driver, homeowner, multiple policy, and passive restraint discounts applied. When taking advantage of discounts, theamount saved on insurance for college graduates is 28% or $608.
Insuring your vehicle with a good quality company can be rather challenging considering how many companies sell coverage in California. The company ratings shown below may help you pick which auto insurance companies to look at when shopping car insurance rates for college graduates.
These ratings are only made up of insurance companies that insure vehicles in the majority of U.S. states, so companies that may only write in California will not be included in the list. To compare rates from these top-rated insurers and more, just click here.
|Company||Value||Customer Service||Claims||Customer Satisfaction||A.M Best Rating||Overall Score|
|AAA of Southern California||91||94||97||92%||A+||94.1|
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Data Source: Insure.com Best Car Insurance Companies
Does it make sense to buy full coverage?
Saving on insurance is probably important to most vehicle owners, and an effective way to find cheaper insurance for college graduates is to not pay for full coverage. The example below compares insurance prices with full coverage compared to only the California minimum liability coverage. Data assumes no claims or driving citations, $100 deductibles, marital status is single, and no policy discounts are applied.
As an average for all age groups, physical damage coverage on your policy costs an additional $2,525 per year over having just liability coverage. Many drivers may wonder if it’s worth it to buy full coverage. There is no clear-cut rule of when to drop full coverage on your policy, but there is a general convention. If the yearly cost for physical damage coverage is more than around 10% of replacement cost minus your deductible, then it’s probably a good time to buy liability coverage only.
There are a few situations where buying only liability insurance is not recommended. If you haven’t paid off your loan, you must maintain physical damage coverage to protect the lienholder’s interest. Also, if your finances do not allow you to purchase a different vehicle in the even your car is totaled, you should keep full coverage.
Why you should shop around
Los Angeles insurance rates are calculated based on many things that will increase or decrease the policy price. Simply improving your credit, getting married, or getting a speeding ticket may cause policy rate changes that can make some companies cheaper than competitors. And not only may your rating factors change, but insurers modify pricing every year or even multiple times each year to help ensure profitability. Higher than usual claims may result in increased policy costs, while profitable underwriting may result in cheaper Los Angeles car insurance rates.
As an example, the chart below shows the companies that have the cheapest car insurance in Los Angeles, CA for a 35-year-old female driver with no prior accidents, a clean driving record, and a decent credit rating. When quoting prices based on her personal profile, USAA quotes the best car insurance rates in Los Angeles at $1,835 a year. This is $184 more than the average policy premium paid by California drivers of $1,651. Wawanesa, CSAA, Century National, and Nationwide are the rest of the cheapest Los Angeles, CA auto insurance companies.
Now let’s give the driver from the first example a claim or two, a lower credit score, and a traffic citation. Since every insurance provider has their own formula to set their prices, comparing prices could result in a substantially altered list of the cheapest car insurance companies in Los Angeles as shown below.
Grange now has the lowest car insurance rate in Los Angeles, CA with Allstate, Mercury, Progressive, and GEICO now rounding out the top five. This example demonstrates why Los Angeles drivers need to compare lots of rates to get the most affordable auto insurance rates for college graduates.
Prices are impacted by many different factors and change substantially, so the cheapest option when you bought your policy may now be one of the higher cost companies.