Everyone likes to save money where they can. When it comes to car insurance, you can often find a better rate by switching insurers, as some offer much lower car premiums than others. If cheap car insurance is your goal, you're in the right place. Below, you’ll find the cheapest California car insurance companies based on your driving record, family situation, age, and desired level of coverage.

The Cost of Car Insurance in California

So, how much is car insurance in California? California car insurance isn’t cheap, as a whole. The average annual car insurance premium is $1,661. If you purchase the bare minimum amount of coverage, that average drops down to $574. If you opt for a full-coverage policy instead, the average cost increases to $1,804.

Do You Have to Have Insurance to Register a Car in California?

If you want to register your car in California, you need to purchase car insurance. The California minimum car insurance requirements include:

  • Bodily injury liability coverage for $15,000 per person

  • Bodily injury liability coverage for $30,000 per accident

  • Property damage liability coverage for $5,000 per accident

While purchasing the minimum car insurance coverage comes with an attractive price, it can cost you more later on. For instance, if you get into an accident that exceeds your coverage limits, you’ll have to foot the rest of the bill on your own. Thus, it’s worth adding more coverage if you can afford to do so.

Why Is California Car Insurance So Expensive in California?

Nationwide, car insurance premiums have been increasing. This is due to more accidents and costlier vehicle repairs. However, some risks behind California's high insurance rates are specific to the state.

Here are some of the contributing factors to California’s costly car insurance premiums:

  • California has more cars on the road than any other state – California has a large population of 40 million people. Only a small percentage of these residents use public transportation. As a result, California’s roads are busy and experience more accidents.

  • California is an urbanized state – California has many thriving cities, like Los Angeles, San Francisco, and San Diego. Urban places like these have more auto theft, vandalism, and car accidents, all of which cause car insurers to raise their rates.

  • California has a lot of uninsured drivers15% of California drivers are uninsured. These drivers place a financial burden to the entire system, including the companies that provide insurance to properly-insured drivers.

Each of these risks cost car insurance companies more money, so they have to raise their rates to stay in business.

Who Has the Cheapest Car Insurance in California?

While rates are higher in California, you don’t have to settle for an inflated car insurance rate just because you live here. Location is only one factor that plays into your premium.

Here are the other factors that impact your car insurance rate:

  • Age

  • Marital status

  • Years of driving experience

  • Driving record

  • Vehicle type

  • Miles driven per year

  • Coverage and deductibles

  • Your chosen car insurance company

Let’s focus on that last element and see which insurance companies provide the cheapest California car insurance.

Cheapest Car Insurance California For Good Drivers

If you have a clean driving record, you’ll enjoy a low rate on your car insurance. For good drivers who choose full coverage policies, these are the car insurers with the best rates:

  1. Geico: $1,341

  2. Liberty Mutual: $1,466

  3. Wawanesa: $1,477

  4. Kemper: $1,557

  5. 21st Century: $1,588

Cheapest Car Insurance in California For Married Couples

Another way to get a great discount is to bundle your car insurance with your spouse. If you’re married or live with your partner, these car insurance companies offer the lowest rates:

  1. Geico: $1,724

  2. Wawanesa: $1,991

  3. Allstate: $2,060

  4. Kemper: $2,081

  5. Mercury: $2,118

Living together is enough to qualify for a bundled policy. However, tying the knot can reduce your rates even further, since car insurance companies view married couples as more responsible.

Cheapest Car Insurance in California For Families with Teens

If you have a new teen driver in your family, you can expect to see a surge in your car insurance rates. Teen drivers are known to be more accident-prone and reckless. With that in mind, the best annual rates for families with teens are:

  1. Wawanesa: $3,223

  2. State Farm: $3,550

  3. CSAA: $3,735

  4. Mercury: $3,912

  5. Kemper: $4,451

Don’t forget to look into Good Student Discounts for your teen if they have a B grade average or above.

Cheapest Car Insurance California For Young Drivers

Even once drivers have left their teen years behind, they’re still a risky group for insurance companies.

If you’re in your 20s and have a good driving record, these are the cheapest California car insurance companies for full coverage policies:

  1. Wawanesa: $1,626

  2. CSAA: $1,810

  3. Geico: $1,956

  4. 21st Century: $1,983

  5. Progressive: $1,985

Conversely, if you’re a young driver, you may not have very many assets to protect. Thus, you might prefer to purchase the minimum coverage. In this case, these are the cheapest companies:

  1. CSAA: $482

  2. Geico: $645

  3. Progressive: $659

  4. Wawanesa: $728

  5. Mercury: $788

Online Auto Insurance: Get Cheap California Car Insurance Today

As you can see, the cheapest car insurance company depends on your situation and your desired amount of car insurance coverage. Thus, it’s crucial to do your research. Make sure you get several quotes from insurance companies before making your final choice.

If you’re ready to start shopping around, there’s no better resource than Online Auto Insurance’s auto insurance comparison tool on top of this page. Online Auto Insurance allows you to request free quotes from a wide range of California auto insurers. From there, you can evaluate their rates and choose one that’s affordable for your budget.

Sources:

ValuePenguin. Where in California is Car Insurance the Most Expensive?\ https://www.valuepenguin.com/where-california-car-insurance-most-expensive

ValuePenguin. Uninsured & Underinsured Motorist Coverage Car Insurance.\ https://www.valuepenguin.com/uninsured-underinsured-motorist-coverage-car-insurance

Nerd Wallet. Best Cheap Car Insurance in California for 2020.\ https://www.nerdwallet.com/blog/insurance/cheapest-car-insurance-in-california-ca/