What Insurance is Cheapest for Young Drivers in Seattle?

The vehicle that needs insurance is one of the main factors that determines if you can find the most affordable insurance for young drivers. Vehicles with higher performance, poor crash test ratings, or a track record of large liability claims will cost quite a bit more to insure than more modest models.

The next list ranks car insurance costs for the most economical vehicles to insure in Washington.

Cheapest Vehicles to Insure in Seattle, WA
Vehicle Insured Estimated Cost for Full Coverage
Honda CR-V LX 4WD $5,570
Ford Escape XLS 2WD $5,579
Toyota Prius $6,030
Volkswagen Jetta SE 2.5 Station Wagon $6,384
Ford Focus SE 4-Dr Sedan $6,554
GMC Sierra SLE Regular Cab 2WD $6,607
Chevrolet Equinox LS 2WD $6,616
Toyota Camry LE $6,607
Toyota RAV4 Limited 4WD $6,616
Ford F-150 Lariat Super Cab 2WD $6,662
Ford Explorer Eddie Bauer 4WD $6,668
Dodge Grand Caravan Crew $6,662
Toyota Tacoma Double Cab TRD Sport Package 4WD $6,670
Chevrolet Impala LTZ $6,961
Ford Edge Limited AWD $6,971
Hyundai Elantra SE 4-Dr Sedan $6,961
Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT-8 4WD $7,016
Toyota Corolla XRS $7,022
Honda Odyssey Touring $7,016
Chevrolet Malibu LTZ $7,023
Ford F-350 XL Crew Cab Turbo Diesel 2WD $7,125
Dodge Ram 3500 Crew Cab ST 2WD $7,135
Kia Optima LX $7,153
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Data rating is based on single female driver age 17, no speeding tickets, no at-fault accidents, $1,000 deductibles, and Washington minimum liability limits. Discounts applied include claim-free, and safe-driver. Prices do not factor in the specific area where the vehicle is garaged which can decrease or increase coverage rates greatly.

Looking at the rates, you can assume that cars like the Honda CR-V, Ford Escape, and Toyota Prius are likely to be some of the more affordable vehicles to insure for youthful drivers. The cost of a car insurance policy will tend to be higher just due to the fact that there is more exposure for young drivers, but overall those particular models will most likely have the best rates compared to other types of vehicles.

For youthful drivers, one of the largest factors that are looked at to determine car insurance rates is where your car is garaged in Seattle. Larger areas tend to have higher rates, whereas areas with less crime or weather claims tend to receive slightly lower rates.

The following table lists the highest-priced areas in Washington for young drivers to purchase car insurance in. Seattle ranks #6 with a yearly cost of $1,363 on average, which is around $114 monthly.

How much does car insurance cost in Seattle, WA?
Rank City Premium Per Year
1 Federal Way $1,435
2 Lakewood $1,434
3 Auburn $1,422
4 Tacoma $1,399
5 Kent $1,378
6 Seattle $1,363
7 South Hill $1,354
8 Shoreline $1,352
9 Renton $1,348
10 Everett $1,276
11 Bellevue $1,256
12 Redmond $1,251
13 Sammamish $1,232
14 Kirkland $1,231
15 Marysville $1,208
16 Vancouver $1,192
17 Olympia $1,105
18 Spokane $1,093
19 Lacey $1,078
20 Spokane Valley $1,065
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Premium amounts are approximated as the specific garaging location can lower or raise price quotes substantially.

Deciding which companies quote the best auto insurance rates for young drivers calls for a bit more work than just comparing rates from one or two companies.

Each company uses different criteria for setting rates, so we’ll take a look at the most budget-friendly auto insurance companies in Washington. It’s important that you understand Seattle, WA auto insurance rates are calculated based on many things that control your annual premium. Improving your credit rating, buying a different home, or getting a speeding ticket may prompt premium changes that can cause some rates to be much cheaper than others.

Cheapest Insurance Rates for Teens

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Rankings for the cheapest Washington auto insurance companies
Rank Company Cost Per Year
1 Capital $784
2 Grange $813
3 PEMCO $974
4 Nationwide $981
5 Mutual Enumclaw $1,023
6 Travelers $1,028
7 Chubb $1,083
8 The Hartford $1,090
9 USAA $1,092
10 Allied $1,098
11 California Casualty $1,116
12 State Farm $1,165
13 Safeco $1,180
14 American Family $1,208
15 Amica $1,256
16 Liberty Mutual $1,257
17 Farmers $1,329
18 Progressive $1,465
19 National General $1,480
20 MetLife $1,631
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Capital quotes some of the most affordable car insurance rates in Seattle at around $784 annually. Grange, PEMCO, Nationwide, and Mutual Enumclaw would also be considered some of the more affordable Seattle, WA car insurance companies.

In this example, if you are currently insured with PEMCO and switched to Capital, you may see an annual savings of in the vicinity of $190. Drivers with Nationwide may save as much as $197 a year, and Mutual Enumclaw customers might see rate reductions of $239 a year.

Understand that those policy prices are averages across all types of drivers and the different vehicles they drive and do not take into consideration an exact zip code location for young drivers. So the insurer that is best suited for you may not even be in the top 25 companies shown above. That is why you need to compare as many prices as possible using your own individual information.

Full coverage rates compared to liability only

Saving money on auto insurance is probably important to the majority of people, and one of the fastest ways to reduce the cost of insurance for young drivers is to not pay for full coverage. The example below visualizes the comparison of yearly insurance costs with and without full coverage. The information is based on no claims or driving violations, $250 deductibles, drivers are not married, and no policy discounts are applied.

Averaged out for all age groups, physical damage coverage on your policy costs $2,073 per year more than carrying just liability coverage. That amount may make you wonder when is it a good idea to stop buying full coverage. There is no definitive rule that is best for determining when to drop physical damage coverage, but there is a general convention. If the annual cost of coverage is more than about 10% of any settlement you would receive from your insurance company, then it’s probably a good time to buy liability coverage only.

For example, let’s assume your vehicle’s claim settlement value is $10,500 and you have $1,000 full coverage deductibles. If your vehicle is damaged in an accident, you would only receive $9,500 after paying the physical damage deductible. If you are paying in excess of $950 a year to have full coverage, then it may be the right time to buy liability only.

There are a few situations where dropping full coverage is not advised. If you have an outstanding loan on your vehicle, you are required to maintain full coverage as part of the loan conditions. Also, if you can’t afford to buy a different vehicle if your current one is totaled, you should maintain full coverage.

The chart below shows how choosing a deductible can raise or lower insurance prices when quoting cheap insurance for young drivers. The premiums assume a married female driver, full physical damage coverage, and no other discounts are factored in.

The data above shows that a 30-year-old driver could lower their car insurance rates by $234 a year by switching from a $100 deductible to a $500 deductible, or save $354 by selecting a $1,000 deductible. Even younger insureds, like the age 20 example, could roll back prices as much as $498 or even more just by choosing larger deductibles. If you do decide to increase your deductibles, it will be necessary to have emergency funds available to satisfy the extra out-of-pocket expense, which deters some drivers from choosing higher deductibles.

Here’s why you should shop around

Washington auto insurance rates are calculated based on many things that can increase the policy price. Improving your credit score, having a teen driver, or getting a reckless driving citation can cause premium changes resulting in some companies being more affordable than competitors. And not only may your rating factors change, but insurers amend pricing multiple times each year to reflect underwriting profits or losses. Significantly higher claims may cause increased rates, while less frequent claims may result in cheaper Seattle car insurance rates.

To illustrate this point, the chart below demonstrates which company has the cheapest car insurance in Seattle, WA for a 30-year-old male driver with no prior claims, no tickets, and a good credit history. If we estimate rates based on his current rating profile, Capital may offer the most affordable car insurance rates in Seattle at $1,061 each year. This is $351 less than the average premium paid by Washington drivers of $1,412. Grange, Nationwide, PEMCO, and Travelers are the rest of the most affordable Seattle, WA auto insurance companies.

The example below compares rates after we give the driver from above a claim, less-than-perfect credit, and an imperfect driving record. Due to the fact that every auto insurer has their own unique process to set their prices, analyzing rates may now result in a different set of affordable Seattle car insurance companies as shown below.

California Casualty now has the best car insurance rate in Seattle, WA with The Hartford, USAA, Chubb, and State Farm completing the list. This example proves why drivers need to perform a complete rate comparison to find the most economical auto insurance quotes for young drivers.

Insurance prices are influenced by many factors and change dramatically, so the cheapest option the last time you compared rates may now be costing you a lot of money.