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Different states in the U.S. have different requirements and standards that factor into auto insurance rates. Aside from state requirements, there are some general factors that play into auto insurance rates and how they are determined. Things like your age, gender, driving record and marital status, as well as your car make and model, can all play into how your auto rates are determined. 

Man in neon green vest assessing damage of car

Key Factors

First we’ll discuss different factors that can contribute to rates for insurance. Some of these factors you might be able to affect, some others you won’t be able to control, such as your age. All of these elements factor into your auto insurance rates. 


Automobile insurance rates will vary depending on the policy holder’s age. Both ends of the spectrum tend to be more expensive, that being old and young. Insurance rates for teens and senior citizens are much higher than adults 30-50. If your age is right in the middle, above 30 and under 50, your insurance rates will be lower. If you have a good driving record as well, your rates will be more affordable. 

Driving Record

Insurance companies calculate rates from your driving record, among other things, to determine how likely you are to get a traffic violation or into an accident. If you already have one or more traffic violations or accidents that are your fault, you can expect your insurance rates to increase significantly. Because rates are calculated by assessing your risk of accident or violation, if you already have been involved in either, your risk for being involved in another is even higher. 

Your car insurance rates will increase depending on the nature of your offense. Receiving a DUI or DWI will certainly increase your insurance rates. Speeding is less serious, but will still increase your rates by a noticeable amount. If you are found at fault for an accident, your rates could increase up to $1,000 or more per year. However, taking a safety driving course could reduce points on your license, therefore reducing your insurance rates. 

Gender and Marital Status

Man smiling behind steering wheelGender doesn’t have as much of an impact on insurance rates as it used to, and the difference between men and women tends to be similar, depending on your state. Being married will give you a discount, however. Even divorced couples can still get discounts on their car insurance as well. 

Credit Score

Just as insurance companies determine rates based on your likelihood of accidents or violations, they use your credit score to base how likely you are to make your payments on time. A poor credit score could cause your insurance rate to nearly double, and a good credit score could half your rates, depending on your state. 

Coverage Types

Insurance companies offer several different types of insurance coverage at varying rates. In addition to all the other factors mentioned, what type of coverage you choose will also affect your insurance rates. Certain states require specific types of coverage. Most states require at least liability coverage for bodily injury and property damage, but other states may require personal injury protection or uninsured motorist coverage. The more coverage your insurance offers you, the more expensive it will be, however it may just save you in the long-run. 

Looking for Car Insurance?

Home and Auto Resources has a compiled list of information and materials on home and auto insurance, as well as service, maintenance and other helpful advice. If you’re still wondering about auto insurance, how rates are determined, and the specific types of insurance coverage, come visit our resources page, or call 888-535-2762 today!


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