I’m sure you’ve seen the catchy commercials from car insurance companies like GEICO and Allstate that promise the cheapest price. So you just need to choose the one with the best commercial, right?
It’s not that simple, unfortunately, as there are a whole bunch of unknown elements such as the deductible level you need, how many years you have been driving, if you are currently insured, and the crash test ratings of your vehicle. We know insurance is not everyone’s favorite topic, but in this article we will cover the best ways to shop for cheaper coverage and will hopefully give you a good start in finding the cheapest insurance.
For people with poor credit, one of the more important criteria that are looked at to determine auto insurance rates is where your car is garaged. Areas with more people or even just a higher incidence of claims tend to pay slightly more, whereas areas with fewer weather claims and lower vehicle theft rates can boast about having cheaper rates.
The information below lists the priciest cities in California for drivers with bad credit to purchase car insurance in. Oakland comes in at #4 with an annual rate of $1,687 for the average insurance policy, which is around $141 per month.
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Prices are comparative as specific Oakland zip code can impact premiums significantly.
The vehicle needing coverage is one of the main factors when comparing the most affordable car insurance for drivers with bad credit. Vehicles with more horsepower, a lack of advanced safety features, or a high likelihood of having liability claims will cost much more to insure than safer, lower-performance models.
The next list showcases coverage costs for some of the most budget-friendly vehicles to buy insurance for.
|Vehicle Make and Model||Estimated Cost for Full Coverage|
|Jeep Wrangler Sport 4WD 2-Dr||$1,393|
|Ford F-150 STX Super Cab 2WD||$1,477|
|Ford Escape XLT 4WD||$1,505|
|Toyota Tacoma 4WD||$1,508|
|Honda CR-V LX 4WD||$1,518|
|Volkswagen Jetta LE 4-Dr Sedan||$1,594|
|Ford Explorer Limited 2WD||$1,623|
|Chevrolet Silverado LS Extended Cab 2WD||$1,707|
|Ford Edge SE AWD||$1,709|
|Toyota Corolla XRS||$1,714|
|GMC Sierra SL Crew Cab 2WD||$1,709|
|Dodge Grand Caravan CV||$1,712|
|Chevrolet Silverado 3500HD LT Crew Cab 2WD||$1,741|
|Toyota RAV4 Sport 2WD||$1,743|
|Chevrolet Malibu Hybrid||$1,751|
|Nissan Altima 2.5 4-Dr Sedan||$1,743|
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Table data represents single male driver age 40, no speeding tickets, no at-fault accidents, $1,000 deductibles, and California minimum liability limits. Discounts applied include multi-policy, safe-driver, multi-vehicle, claim-free, and homeowner. Estimates do not factor in zip code location which can lower or raise price quotes greatly.
Looking at the numbers, we can expect makes and models like the Jeep Wrangler, Ford F-150, Ford Escape, Toyota Tacoma, and Honda CR-V are likely to be a few of the most affordable vehicles to insure for people with poor credit. The cost of auto insurance will tend to be higher because there is more risk for drivers with bad credit, but in general those specific models will most likely have the lowest prices that you are likely to find.
The chart below demonstrates how choosing different deductibles can influence insurance costs when researching cheap insurance for drivers with bad credit. The costs are based on a married female driver, full physical damage coverage, and no discounts are applied.
The chart above illustrates that a 30-year-old driver could lower rates by $350 a year by changing from a $100 deductible up to a $500 deductible, or save $530 by switching to a $1,000 deductible. Even younger insureds, like the 20-year-old, can cut $750 or more by choosing a larger deductible amount. When insureds make the decision to increase the deductibles on their policy, it will be important to have additional funds in a savings account to allow you to cover the extra out-of-pocket expense, which is the one shortcoming of high deductibles.
Get discount Oakland insurance
Car insurance companies that offer cheap quotes for drivers with bad credit may also give you rate discounts that could lower prices by as much as 30% if you meet eligibility requirements. A list of companies and their offered discounts are shown below.
- State Farm may offer discounts for good driver, multiple autos, Drive Safe & Save, Steer Clear safe driver discount, and passive restraint.
- GEICO has discounts for membership and employees, air bags, driver training, anti-theft, and five-year accident-free.
- SAFECO may have discounts that include homeowner, safe driver, multi-car, anti-theft, and accident prevention training.
- Farmers Insurance has savings for multi-car, business and professional, early shopping, switch companies, and bundle discounts.
- AAA policyholders can earn discounts including AAA membership discount, education and occupation, anti-theft, multi-car, good student, and multi-policy.
- USAA offers premium reductions for good student, safe driver, defensive driver, military installation, and vehicle storage.
The diagram below illustrates the comparison of car insurance costs with and without discounts being applied to the rates. The information is based on a female driver, no tickets, no at-fault accidents, California state minimum liability limits, full coverage, and $1,000 deductibles.
The first bar for each age group shows insurance cost with no discounts. The second bar shows the rates with homeowner, vehicle safety, passive restraint, accident-free, claim-free, and multiple policy discounts applied. When these discounts are applied, the average savings per year on auto insurance for drivers with bad credit is 28% or $532.
Do you need full coverage?
Saving money when shopping for auto insurance should be important to the majority of vehicle owners, and one of the best ways to save on the cost of insurance for drivers with bad credit is to buy only liability coverage. The example below visualizes the comparison of yearly insurance costs with and without full coverage. The costs are based on a clean driving record, no at-fault accidents, $1,000 deductibles, single status, and no other discounts are factored in.
As an overall average, physical damage coverage on your policy costs $2,467 per year more than buying just liability insurance. Many drivers will wonder if physical damage coverage is worth the money. There isn’t a steadfast formula to exclude physical damage coverage on your policy, but there is a general school of thought. If the annual cost of your full coverage insurance is more than 10% of the replacement cost minus the deductible, then you may need to consider dropping full coverage.
For example, let’s assume your vehicle’s replacement cost is $5,000 and you have $1,000 policy deductibles. If your vehicle is destroyed, the most you would receive is $4,000 after the deductible is paid. If it’s costing you more than $400 annually for full coverage, then you may want to consider only buying liability coverage.
There are a few situations where removing full coverage is not recommended. If you still owe money on your vehicle, you have to maintain full coverage in order to prevent the bank from purchasing higher-priced coverage. Also, if you cannot afford to purchase a different vehicle if your current one is damaged, you should not drop full coverage.
How to find cheaper insurance for drivers with bad credit
Below you’ll find many thrifty ideas that can help drivers quote low-cost coverage.
- Just one traffic violation will increase your rates
- Avoid accidents and claims
- Buy safe vehicles
- Save money by bundling your home and auto policies
- Don’t waste money on full coverage for older vehicles
- Too many claims can make car insurance unaffordable
- Keep rates low by shopping around frequently
That final tip is certainly necessary, as was emphasized in this article. Insurance prices change constantly, so don’t be unwilling to switch carriers if a more affordable rate is found.
Loyalty to a specific company is fine, but it’s not recommended if your bullheadedness ends up costing you hundreds of dollars a year. It only take a few minutes to shop around to find cheaper auto insurance for drivers with bad credit in Oakland.