Comparative shopping is the best way to find the cheapest car insurance in Chicago.
Start by obtaining quotes from different companies and take the time to research each potential carrier.
Although it’s vital to secure an insurance rate that meets your budget, it’s also important to consider the financial standing and reliability of providers.
With thorough research, you’re sure to find an insurance provider that’s not only cheap but also provides car insurance that reliably meets your needs.
Insurance companies consider several factors when underwriting your policy and calculating your rate, including your age, gender, the make and model of your vehicle, and your geographic location.
Study the conditions in your surrounding area such as accident and theft rates, traffic density, and weather.
Understanding how each of these variables affects your premium helps you to learn the right questions to ask each provider, so you can secure the cheapest car insurance in Chicago.
How Much is Car Insurance in Chicago, On Average?
If you’re trying to determine whether insurance providers are quoting you a reasonable and fair rate, it can help to understand the average cost of car insurance for drivers throughout Chicago.
According to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners, average insurance rates throughout Illinois increased $81 between 2011 and 2015.
When comparing premiums in Chicago and throughout Illinois with those in nearby states, you can see that rates are slightly higher in Illinois than they are in the rest of the Midwest, but somewhat below the countrywide average.
|Average Cost of Car Insurance in Chicago||$884.56|
|Average Cost of Car Insurance in Missouri||$872.43|
|Average Cost of Car Insurance in Iowa||$702.46|
|Average Cost of Car Insurance in Wisconsin||$737.18|
|Countrywide Average Cost of Car Insurance||$1009.38|
Aside from the make and model of your vehicle and your driving record, there are many geographic variables that influence the rate you pay for your insurance policy, including theft rates, population demographics, disposable income, and traffic density.
- Traffic Conditions in Chicago
Insurance companies typically analyze traffic condition data on a state level.
Of course, Chicago is a highly populated area with high population density. As such, traffic density and fatal accident rates are considerably higher in Chicago and other large cities than throughout the rest of Illinois.
According to the NAIC (National Association of Insurance Commissioners) report, Illinois has a traffic density of 719,709 (calculated as the number of miles traveled against miles of highway throughout the state). On average, registered vehicles traversed a total of 10,466 miles each throughout the state.
This rate is just below the national average of 12,010. Fatal accidents in Illinois occur at a rate of 0.09 per 1,000 vehicles, which is slightly under the 0.13 national average.
Higher traffic density and fatal accident rates result in higher risks to insurance providers, and they then pass those risks on to customers in the form of higher insurance premiums.
Consumers living outside of Illinois’ metropolitan areas, such as Chicago, can expect to pay lower premiums than they would in a larger city.
- Vehicle Theft Rates in Chicago
Illinois is ranked as the seventh state in the U.S. with the highest number of auto thefts, according to the Insurance Information Institute.
The FBI reported there were an estimated 19,148 auto thefts in metropolitan areas of Illinois during 2016. The state total was 19,910. Insurance companies may adjust comprehensive insurance rates to keep up with the region’s high theft risk.
The National Insurance Crime Bureau’s Hot Wheels Report lists the top ten most commonly stolen vehicles in each state throughout the U.S.
The two most common theft targets in Illinois were the Dodge Caravan and the Chevrolet Impala. A total of 1,150 Caravans and 678 Impalas in 2016 were stolen. Other frequent targets of theft in Illinois include the Honda Civic, Toyota Camry, and Chevrolet Malibu.
When you’re shopping for a new vehicle, opting for one with lower theft rates should help to keep your insurance more affordable.
- Population Density in Chicago
Areas such as Chicago with high population densities have more vehicles and therefore, higher theft and accident rates.
The population density in Illinois is 231 persons per square mile, and in Chicago you can expect that number to be much higher. The 2010 U.S. census recorded Chicago’s population density at 11,841 per square mile.
According to the NAIC, Chicago is the third most populous city in the U.S. and large cities such as Chicago are home to 86.9 percent of Illinois’ residents. Outside of these cities, where population density is considerably lower, drivers may find that insurance rates are also less.
- Disposable Income in Chicago
Cities and states in the U.S. that have a higher disposable income often have a higher volume of expensive vehicles. These vehicles require more coverage due to their high replacement and repair costs, and thus, average insurance premiums in those areas go up.
According to the NAIC, Illinois had an average per capita disposable income per person in 2014 of $42,256. Of course, it’s important to keep in mind that this is a state average, and Chicago’s per capita disposable income may differ from this number.
Throughout the U.S., the average per capita disposable income was $40,859 in 2014, just slightly lower than in Illinois.
Companies with the Cheapest Car Insurance in Chicago
It’s essential to obtain quotes from at least three companies when you’re insurance shopping.
Likewise, remember to compare each of these companies’ customer reviews, policy offerings, and credit ratings. Doing your research and shopping around is the best way to find an insurance provider that can reliably and promptly process your claims after an accident.
One of the most effective ways to find an insurance company that can provide you with a policy that suits your needs and budget is to shop from top companies with well-known names and strong reputations, such as:
Since 1937, Progressive has been offering auto insurance throughout the U.S. Progressive’s customers can take advantage of the company’s online quote comparison tool, which allows them to compare insurance rates from different providers in their area.
Progressive also offers multiple discounts to its customers including safe driver, multi-policy, and pay-in-full discounts.
USAA is exclusively available to military members and their families.
It offers competitive rates and policies to its policyholders and consistently receives high customer satisfaction ratings for both customer service and its claims process.
American Family, or AmFam, is well-known as an insurance company that serves Americans with competitively priced auto insurance policies that include features such as 24/7 claims processing, roadside assistance, and auto loan/lease protection.
It has an excellent credit rating and is another company that’s rated well among its policyholders.
Allstate offers several extra coverage and discount options to auto insurance customers.
What is Mandatory for Car Insurance in Chicago?
Most states in the U.S. regulate insurance for drivers by mandating minimum auto insurance requirements that each driver must carry on their vehicle.
According to the Illinois Department of Insurance, all cars and drivers in the state must carry both liability and uninsured motorist coverage for the following minimum amounts:
- $25,000 for injuries per person
- $50,000 for total injuries per accident
- $20,000 for property damage
Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Insurance:
- $25,000 per person
- $50,000 total per accident
Drivers must agree to maintain these insurance minimums to register their vehicle in Illinois.
Those who fail to comply with these regulations risk hefty fines or suspension of either their vehicle registration or driver’s license.
How to Reduce the Cost of Your Car Insurance Coverage in Chicago
Car insurance isn’t cheap, but it is a necessary expense.
Without car insurance, you’re responsible for huge out of pocket expenses for repairs and potential medical bills if you’re in a car accident, not to mention your state’s legal requirements of keeping an active policy.
It’s important to remember that the cost of insurance is far lower than the price of these potential expenses.
While car insurance seems expensive, it doesn’t always have to break the bank.
Based on the advice of the III, here are some tips to help you reduce the cost of your auto insurance policy:
- Bundle your home, life, and auto insurance policies with the same provider
- Request an increase to your deductible
- Reduce optional coverage on vehicles that you don’t drive often
- Reduce your mileage whenever possible
Most of the best insurance companies in Chicago offer some variation of discounts to their policyholders.
These discounts reward policyholders for things such as good driving behaviors and driving newer vehicles with up-to-date safety features.
If you want to take advantage of all available discounts, it’s important to make sure you’re prepared to provide the following information when you purchase your policy:
- Your full home address and detailed information regarding parking and storage of your vehicle
- Your approximate budget for insurance
- Full names, dates of birth, and driving history for all drivers on your policy
- School grades for any teen drivers on your policy, to take advantage of a good grades discount
- All details about the vehicles you’ll be adding to your policy including their makes, models, years, conditions, and vehicle identification numbers
What Can Increase the Cost of Your Car Insurance?
Several factors can increase your insurance costs.
These go beyond the conditions in your specific geographic region, to involve things such as your driving history and safety ratings of the car you’re driving.
- Safety Ratings: Each year, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety assign safety ratings to hundreds of new vehicles. Insurance companies take these ratings into serious consideration while underwriting your policy. Cars with low ratings—or with no ratings at all—may result in higher insurance premiums.
- Driving History: If you or other drivers on your policy are inexperienced or have a driving history with numerous infractions, your premiums are likely to be higher. Offenses include things such as speeding tickets and driving while under the influence.
- The Value of Your Vehicle: Choosing to drive an expensive vehicle always results in higher insurance costs, no matter which provider you choose. Higher priced cars bring a higher risk to your insurance provider, and therefore, premiums are higher as well.
After reading the above details, you should have a good understanding of how insurance companies calculate rates and how your geographic location creates more or less risk.
This information should help you confidently research and compare insurance companies to find the cheapest car insurance in Chicago.*While we make every effort to keep our site updated, please be aware that "timely" information on this page, such as quote estimates, or pertinent details about companies, may only be accurate as of its last edit day. Huntley Wealth & Insurance Services and its representatives do not give legal or tax advice. Please consult your own legal or tax adviser.