Car Insurance Rates Skyrocket Recent data shows that car insurance rates have increased significantly, leaving drivers with little hope for relief in the near future. The consumer price index report released by the government indicated a staggering 17.8% increase in auto insurance costs between July 2022 and July of this year. As a result, the average driver now pays $1,668 for their insurance policy, according to Insurify, an online insurance agency. The increase in car insurance rates has been especially burdensome for drivers in New Mexico, Nevada and New Jersey. These states have seen annual rate increases of 38%, 36%, and 34% respectively in 2024. While the reasons behind these increases are complex and multifaceted, some contributing factors include rising medical costs and an increase in distracted driving accidents. It is important for drivers to be aware of these trends and shop around for the best rates and coverage options available to them.
Car Insurance Rates Skyrocket
Car insurance rates have seen a significant increase of 17.8% recently, leaving many drivers wondering why this is happening and what they can do to mitigate the impact on their wallets. There are several factors contributing to these skyrocketing rates, including an increase in the cost of vehicle repairs and medical expenses, as well as a rise in the number of accidents and claims. Additionally, insurance companies have been grappling with financial losses due to natural disasters and other unforeseen events. To combat these rising costs, drivers can take proactive steps such as shopping around for the best rates, maintaining a clean driving record, and considering higher deductibles or usage-based insurance programs. It’s important to stay informed about the factors affecting car insurance rates and explore all available options to ensure you’re getting the best coverage at a reasonable price.
Experts point to four main reasons for the spike in car insurance rates:
- Costs associated with driving are higher.
- More cars are on the road—which means more accidents.
- Auto theft has surged.
- As catastrophic weather events multiply, there’s an uptick in the number of damaged and totaled cars.
Inflation Boosts Car-Related Costs
Driving a car today is generally more costly than it was a few years ago due to inflation, which rose to an annual rate of 3.2% in July from 3% in June. This has led to increased expenses for owning a car, including higher repair costs and medical treatments resulting from car accidents. Insurance companies are passing on these higher prices to their customers. According to the consumer price index report, the cost of vehicle maintenance and repair has increased by 12.7% year over year. San Antonio personal injury lawyer George Salinas notes that the expenses for repairs have escalated due to technological and safety advancements in vehicles.
More Drivers on the Road Means More Accidents
As the amount of driving goes up, so does the likelihood of car accidents – and the probability that insurance companies will have to pay out more. The National Safety Council has reported a 2.5% increase in the number of miles driven in May 2023 compared to May 2022. Annual mileage is 30% higher than in 2020, when the country was mostly under lockdown due to Covid. Last year, more than 7,500 pedestrians were hit and killed by drivers, the highest number since 1981. Maria Coello, an insurance agent with MyClick Insurance, states that “The frequency and severity of accidents have increased recently, resulting in higher payouts by insurance companies. This trend has forced insurers to adjust their premium rates in order to maintain their financial stability and ability to meet claims.”
Car Theft Zooms by Double Digits
Car theft has increased significantly, with a 34% rise in motor vehicle thefts during the first half of 2023 compared to the same period last year, according to mid-year statistics from the Council on Criminal Justice. The cost of replacing these stolen cars has also risen, as the shortage of cars during Covid has resulted in higher economic losses when vehicles are totaled.
Cars Hit by More Floods, Fires and Other Natural Disasters
In recent years, severe weather events have caused greater harm to vehicles, leading to a significant rise in expenses for insurance firms as they process a higher number of claims. “Even though economic forecasts account for some preparation for natural calamities, the actual number has surpassed the expectations of insurance companies and others,” stated Salinas.
4 Ways Drivers Can Reduce Their Car Insurance Costs
- Bundle policies. Insurance providers may offer discounts if you bundle multiple policies, such as auto and home insurance.
- Maintain a clean driving record. Drivers without a history of accidents and tickets are often rewarded with cheaper insurance premiums. Ask your insurer if it gives discounts for a clean record.
- Shop around. Compare policies from multiple providers to get the most competitive price. Some insurance companies offer discounts for students and low driving mileage.
- Remember that higher deductibles mean lower premiums. If you go with a higher deductible, you’ll likely end up with lower premium costs. Keep in mind that you’ll have to pay the deductible first when you make a claim, so be sure to factor that in when you choose the cost of your deductible.
The recent skyrocketing of car insurance rates, with an increase of 17.8%, has left many drivers wondering why this is happening and what they can do about it. Several factors contribute to these rising rates, including a rise in accident frequency and severity, increased repair costs, and growing medical expenses. To mitigate the impact on your wallet, consider exploring other insurance providers, reviewing your coverage options, and taking advantage of available discounts. Additionally, maintaining a clean driving record and practicing safe driving habits can help you avoid accidents and potentially lower your insurance premiums. While the increasing rates may be concerning, taking proactive steps can help you navigate this challenging landscape and find more affordable car insurance options.