Car Insurance in California

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Looking for cheap car insurance in California?

Due to the large cities, frequent natural disasters, and high property theft rates, California has some of the highest car insurance rates in the country. That said, California drivers can still save money on car insurance by shopping with Jerry.
California’s cities Los Angeles and San Francisco are two of the most populous cities in the United States, which means they have some of the most crowded interstates and highest accident rates across the nation.
Despite that, your zip code is just one factor insurance companies take into consideration when setting your car insurance rates. Providers will look at your age, driving history, and other attributes before giving you an insurance quote, so it’s a good idea to shop around to make sure you are getting the best price.
That’s where Jerry can help. Jerry is a car super app that will help you find the cheapest rates for car insurance. Sign-up takes less than a minute, Jerry will provide you quotes from over 50 top insurance providers. The average Jerry customer saves $879 per year on car insurance.
Sounds too good to be true? Here are some real quotes and savings from customers in California who switched with Jerry:
Quote DateCarCityAgeCarrier
Before Jerry
After Jerry
October 15, 2021Honda Civic LXVictorville38Infinity$173/mo.$71/mo.
July 15, 2021Honda Civic LXCrestline42National General$290/mo.$121/mo.
September 5, 2021BMW 320 ICamp Pendleton22Dairyland$190/mo.$133/mo.
September 22, 2021Honda Civic EXOntario26ClearCover$168/mo.$134/mo.
February 21, 2021Chevrolet Silverado K1500 LTVacaville48Progressive$240/mo.$157/mo.
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How much does car insurance cost in California?

The average cost of liability-only car insurance in California is $1,872 per year. If you prefer to buy full coverage car insurance in California, you can expect to pay an average cost of $2,341 per year.

How does the cost of car insurance in California compare to the rest of the country?

Compared to nationwide averages, it costs $1,764 per year for liability-only car insurance and $2,486 per year for full-coverage car insurance.
Why are California car insurance rates so high? Here are some of the factors:
  • High population density: California is well-known for its busy cities that see both residents and tourists on their roads every day, leading to more accidents
  • Auto thefts: California has a high incidence of car thefts
  • Natural disasters: Frequent wildfires and earthquakes cause property damage and drive up car insurance rates
Here’s how California insurance premiums compare to nationwide averages:
All Coverage Before Jerry
All Coverage After Jerry
Minimum Coverage Before Jerry
Minimum Coverage After Jerry
Full Coverage Before Jerry
Full Coverage After Jerry
CA$2,246$1,468$2,144$997$2,325$1,592
National Average$2,491$1,672$2,359$1,390$2,763$1,962
CANational Average
All Coverage Before Jerry
$2,246$2,491
All Coverage After Jerry
$1,468$1,672
Minimum Coverage Before Jerry
$2,144$2,359
Minimum Coverage After Jerry
$997$1,390
Full Coverage Before Jerry
$2,325$2,763
Full Coverage After Jerry
$1,592$1,962
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What car insurance do you need in California?

California requires that drivers carry minimum liability insurance before hitting the road. This coverage includes the following:
CoverageAmountDescription
Bodily injury liability$15,000 per person / $30,000 per accidentCovers the costs associated with injuries you cause to others
Property damage liability$5,000 per accidentCovers the costs associated with the damage you cause to other people’s vehicles or property
Failure to obtain the required insurance could result in penalties, including:
  • Fine of up to $250 for a first offense
  • Possible vehicle impoundment
While liability insurance covers other drivers if you’re in an accident, it doesn’t protect you or your vehicle. It’s recommended that you carry more than the minimum liability insurance to make sure you’re protected. Some coverages that California drivers should consider include:
CoverageDescription
Collision insuranceCovers damages that are the result of a collision with a vehicle or stationary object
Comprehensive insuranceCovers damages that aren’t the result of a collision, such as vandalism, theft, or a natural disaster
Roadside assistanceCovers the costs associated with a breakdown
Once you choose the coverage you need, Jerry works to find you the best rates—so you’re never paying more than you have to.
Jerry sources the cheapest quotes from the top name-brand insurance companies and helps you buy new car insurance. Jerry will even help cancel your old policy for you. Furthermore, Jerry will send you new quotes every time your policy comes up for renewal to make sure you’re always getting the best price. Jerry customers save $879 per year on average!
Now that you know the insurance basics, here are some things that impact the cost in California.

How is your cost of car insurance determined in California?

Insurance providers consider factors like your age, driving history, and vehicle when setting your insurance rates.
What young drivers in California need to know
  • Insurers consider young drivers in California to be high risk because they have less experience on the road
  • There are many state-approved defensive driving courses young drivers can take to qualify for discounts
  • Drivers under 25 who maintain a B average or higher can qualify for a good student discount
Young drivers have higher rates than their more experienced counterparts, but by applying for discounts, shopping around, and maintaining a clean driving record, drivers under 25 can save money on car insurance.
Jerry helps young drivers find the best prices for car insurance. Here are the average premiums for drivers by age:
Age Group
Average Cost
Annual Savings with Jerry
18-20$2,681$971
21-24$2,663$1,020
25-34$2,520$945
35-44$2,432$899
45-54$2,383$881
55-64$2,695$906
65+$2,925$1,331
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Cost to insure your car in California with a poor driving record

Car insurance carriers also take your past driving record into consideration. If you’ve been in an accident, gotten a speeding ticket, or had a major driving infraction, you will have higher rates for your California car insurance rates.
Drivers with a blemished driving record are considered high-risk, and providers will raise their rates accordingly.
That doesn’t mean that you can’t find good prices! Jerry will help drivers with less stellar driving records find the best prices for car insurance premiums.
These are some of the best rates for drivers with imperfect records after switching with Jerry:
Driving Violation
Average Cost
Annual Savings with Jerry
Clean Record$2,721$945
Seat Belt$3,759$2,071
Illegal Turn$3,647$1,794
Suspension$3,072$1,273
DUI$3,114$1,240
Failure to Obey Traffic Sign$3,362$1,222
Improper Passing$2,752$1,209
Speeding under 15$3,308$1,184
Careless Driving$3,152$1,179
Defective Equipment$4,724$1,148
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Cost to insure your car in California based on where you live

California’s rates are well above the national average—but those rates aren’t the same in every city.
Cities like Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Santa Clarita have higher-than-average prices because of the congested roadways and high accident rates.
Conversely, drivers who live in San Diego or Palo Alto have lower rates than the state average.
These are some of the best rates for car insurance in California for Jerry customers:
City
Average Cost
Annual Savings with Jerry
Bakersfield$2,494$828
Fresno$2,678$1,273
Long Beach$2,749$1,035
Los Angeles$2,651$1,011
Riverside$2,782$1,007
Sacramento$2,278$775
San Diego$2,383$809
San Francisco$2,655$958
San Jose$2,384$919
Stockton$2,336$856
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Cost to insure your car in California based on the type of car you drive

Your vehicle will also play a part in setting your car insurance rates as more expensive, harder to repair cars will cost more to insure—and many drivers in California prefer luxury cars.
In general, less expensive vehicles will be cheaper to insure because their repair or replacement costs will be lower. So a car like the Honda Accord—a popular choice for California drivers—is cheaper to insure than some other cars seen on California roads.
For example, the popular Tesla S is going to be costly to insure because of the specialty repairs needed and the high cost of replacement parts.
Here’s what it costs to insure some popular makes and models in California with and without Jerry:
Car
Average Cost
Annual Savings with Jerry
Toyota Prius$2,434$1,090
Ford Mustang$2,438$1,084
Honda Civic LX$2,290$1,051
Nissan Altima 2.5$2,147$921
Hyundai Sonata SE$2,475$805
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How to save money on car insurance in California

While California’s insurance rates are notably high, there are always ways to save money.

Shop around for quotes

Shopping for car insurance quotes is the easiest way to save on your car insurance premiums. It’s smart to get quotes from at least three to five insurance companies.
That said, comparing quotes takes time—filing piles of paperwork and making copious phone calls—and you can spend that time elsewhere. That’s when Jerry can help.
Jerry is the super app that helps you save time and money on your car expenses, including insurance. Sign-up takes less than a minute, and Jerry does the heavy lifting for you—from collecting quotes from over 50 top insurance providers and completing the paperwork to get you signed up. Jerry can even help you cancel your old policy.
When your policy is up for renewal, Jerry will send you new quotes to make sure you’re always getting the price you want.

Look for discounts

Discounts are another great way to save money on car insurance. Most providers offer a variety of discounts, but they aren’t always advertised on their websites. Be sure to ask your insurance agent what’s available to you.
Here are some popular discounts in California:
DiscountWho is eligible?
Good driver discountsDrivers in California are eligible for good driver discounts if they have a continuously held valid driver’s license for three years, have no at-fault accidents that result in injury or death, and have one or fewer points on their license. This discount is mandated by state law and saves drivers 20% on their car insurance premium.
Bundling discountsDrivers can bundle multiple insurance products (like auto, renters, and home) with the same company to get you a discount—this savings is often around 18%.
Defensive driver discountsMany insurance companies give discounts for drivers who finish a state-approved defensive driving course. This would particularly benefit younger drivers who have sky-high premiums.
Anti-theft devicesMany companies provide discounts if you have added aftermarket anti-theft or safety features to your car, minimizing the risk of theft or damage.
Good student discountsYoung drivers should look for a good student discount. Full-time students who maintain a B average may qualify for savings up to 25% through their insurer.
TelematicsMany companies offer telematics programs which track a driver’s habits and give discounts for good behavior. You can often qualify for a discount just for signing up.
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California insurance companies may consider factors like your employment, residential, and marital status when they set their car insurance premiums.

Increase your deductible

Increasing your deductible—the amount you pay before insurance—is another way to keep monthly premiums low.
A higher deductible would mean that you’d pay more out of pocket if you make a claim, but you could save money if you don’t think that’s likely. However, it’s important to make sure that you can afford to pay the full deductible each time you would need to file.

Registering your car in California

If you want to register a car in California, you need to have the following paperwork prepared:
  • A driver’s license or ID card
  • A car title or signed lease agreement
  • Proof of insurance
  • Proof of sales tax payment
  • Valid smog certificate
  • Pay registration fees
Because of the long wait times at the DMV, it is recommended that you make an appointment to register your car. Keep in mind that you’ll need to complete more paperwork, including personal and vehicle information.
Drivers in California must renew their vehicle registration every year.

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