Auto Insurance in Texas
Texas’ auto insurance rates are right in line with the national average — $1,706 per year, compared to $1,669 nationwide. That said, how much you’ll pay can vary a lot depending on your car, your coverage, and your address. Use our tool to find your best rates:
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The average annual cost of car insurance is higher in Texas than in many U.S. states, but still not nearly as high as in many northeastern states such as Michigan, New York, and New Jersey.
In addition to traffic congestion and other big-city woes, Texas drivers also have to contend with another major risk: the weather. As part of America’s Tornado Alley, Texas has experienced some of the worst tornadoes in the nation’s history. Added to that is the risk of flooding, especially in coastal cities such as San Antonio and Galveston. These weather-related risks make car ownership and maintenance a particular challenge for local drivers, and can also play a part in how drivers should choose their auto insurance premiums.
Texas Minimum Liability
In Texas, the minimum recommended auto insurance coverage is $60,000 per accident and $30,000 for bodily injury. These numbers are below the standard recommended coverage, which is $100,000 for accident and $50,000 for bodily accident (also known as 50/100 coverage). According to industry standards, however, even 50/100 coverage is a bare minimum. A policy with 100/300 coverage ($100,000 for bodily injury and $300,000 per accident) offers much more coverage, which is a major consideration given today’s rapidly rising medical costs, not to mention the costs of car repair. The experts agree: You should get as much car insurance as you can afford, no matter where you live, but in areas like Texas where there are high-risk factors such as tornadoes, flooding and traffic congestion, maximum insurance is imperative.
According to the Insurance Information Institute, the average automobile liability claim for property damages in 2013 was $3,231, while the average bodily injury claim totaled $15,443. When you’re looking at a minimum liability amount for any state, however, it’s important to realize that these numbers are based on average costs for vehicular damage and medical care. This means that half of the time, the costs will be even higher — as much as tens of thousands of dollars higher, in many cases. When it comes to being prepared, we all know that it’s better to be ready for the worst-case scenario, and the same applies when it’s time to purchase auto insurance.
That’s why it pays to shop around for quotes. Car insurance isn’t a one-size-fits-all proposition; each company has a different business strategy and will treat your individual driver profile differently. By comparing premium benefits and prices from a variety of companies, you’ll be able to find the best type of coverage for your lifestyle.
Cheapest Car Insurance in Texas
If price is your first, last, and only consideration, the affordable companies shown in the graph will give you some of the best choices for low-price auto insurance in Texas. But be aware that it’s only “cheapest” if it saves you money. Low-cost insurance may actually end up costing you more, especially if it doesn’t offer adequate coverage.
Cheap insurance companies cut costs by eliminating staff, so paying less might mean offering less customer service. Plus, huge conglomerate companies might not offer local branch offices with regional agents who can expedite your claim. Likewise, cheap insurance companies might not have enough staff to take care of your claim reimbursement promptly.
Most Popular Companies by Marketshare
What does it mean for a car insurance company to be “popular”? In some cases, it simply means that the company has a large marketing budget and can afford plenty of ads and exposure. For savvy consumers, the challenge comes when it’s time to separate the marketing hype from the reality — and the only way to do that is to compare prices and services.
Optimally, the most popular Texas car insurance companies are ones that offer not only adequate coverage, but also coverage that takes care of specific needs for Texas drivers. Remember, however, that a popular insurance may not be the best one for you, especially if it doesn’t give you the coverage options you need.
Choosing the Best Car Insurance in Texas
As with everything else, the term “best” is relative. The best car insurance is the one that suits your specific needs. Before you choose insurance, decide exactly what you’re looking for and prioritize those needs. For example, do you live in a high-risk weather area? Look for insurance that covers flooding and other natural disasters. Plus, you’ll want to consider how often you drive your car and what your typical driving conditions are. Do you take it out off-roading or on mountain treks? Do you do much highway driving? These should all factor into your auto insurance choices.
Top-rated car insurance companies should offer a variety of extensive coverage plans, fair premium prices, discount plans, and an effective, no-hassle claims process with fair reimbursement. A quality company should also have solid financial standing (you don’t want it to go out of business) and should offer expert customer service with real, live agents whenever you need them. Plus, a top insurance company should offer discounts to safe drivers, students, military vets, and those with good credit. Discounts for bundling, for example, for home and auto or multiple cars, are also a plus.
Where is car insurance most affordable?
Where you live has a lot of bearing on how much you’ll pay for car insurance.
Compared to the rest of the country, Texas car insurance premiums are at the higher end of the price scale — not as cheap as they are in states such as Illinois or Virginia, but still substantially cheaper than in California or New York. In addition, when it comes to a breakdown of cities, Texas auto insurance prices don’t vary quite as much from city to city as they do in other states.
High demand can bring higher prices, and auto insurance costs can reflect this. Typically, you can expect to pay more for car insurance in larger cities like Dallas and Houston, but this isn’t always the case. Auto insurance prices in El Paso and Corpus Christi are substantially lower than the Texas state average. Even in Galveston, where floods and tornadoes can be a problem, locals pay less than the state average for car insurance. Here’s an overview of auto insurance pricing in a handful of selected Texas cities.
Abilene Auto Insurance
A major center for both agriculture and industry, Abilene (pop. 120,930) is served by CityLink bus system, but its lack of rail services means that many business commuters are dependent upon having their own car. On the upside, drivers in this busy metropolis do get a break, because car insurance premiums can cost substantially lower here than the state average.
Amarillo Auto Insurance
While Amarillo (pop. 196,627) is home to some of the largest ranches in Texas, it also boasts a busy downtown business community. With no passenger rail service available, many city commuters depend upon their cars for transportation — and insurance prices reflect this demand, as premium costs average a few dollars higher than the state average.
Arlington Auto Insurance
Located just 20 miles from Dallas, Arlington (pop. 379,969) is the fiftieth most populous city in the United States. It’s also the largest city in the country without a rapid rail system, so car usage is at a high level. Fortunately, car insurance premiums average just slightly less than the state average.
Austin Auto Insurance
As the eleventh most-populated city in the country, Austin (pop. 885,400) is also the second-largest state capital in the nation, making it one of the region’s busiest centers for commerce and industry. This thriving metropolis is served by both bus and rail systems; but for those who prefer to drive, auto insurance premiums in Austin are just slightly lower than the state average.
Brownsville Auto Insurance
With one of the country’s fastest-growing urban areas, Brownsville (pop. 181,722) is being reinvented as a major tech center for the region. Business commuters in this sprawling Texas metropolis can rely on the bus, but many prefer to use their own wheels. This high demand for car ownership is reflected in the local auto insurance premium prices, which are typically higher than the state average.
College Station Auto Insurance
Centrally located in the famed Texas Triangle, College Station (pop. 100,890) is renowned as the home of Texas A&M University, and has also gained a reputation as a tech town. Students, tech workers, and other locals have access to a bus system, but no other mass transportation is available, so car ownership is high. The good news is that car insurance premiums cost significantly less here than in other parts of the state, and are well below the state average.
Corpus Christi Auto Insurance
Corpus Christi (pop. 316,454) is home to the fifth largest port in the United States, and is also home to Corpus Christi International Airport. With the city centrally located along busy Interstate 37 and Texas State Highway 44, car ownership is high here, especially since there’s no city rail system. Fortunately for the locals, auto insurance premiums are lower here than the state average.
Dallas Auto Insurance
As the fourth most populous city in the country, Dallas (pop. 1,258,580) is one of the major business and industrial hubs of the Southwest, and is home to one of the world’s largest airports. Locals have access to buses as well as the DART rail system, but many prefer to drive their own wheels in this sprawling metropolis. If you drive, be prepared to pay big city prices, because auto insurance premiums can cost quite a bit more than the state average here.
El Paso Auto Insurance
As a major hub in the nation’s oil and gas industry, El Paso (pop. 679,036) has a huge corporate presence that attracts some of the nation’s top employers. Mass transit consists only of a bus system, although a limited trolley system is under construction for the next several years. In the meantime, car ownership continues to be high here, but drivers can avail themselves of auto insurance premium prices that are significantly lower here than the state average.
Fort Worth Auto Insurance
As the fifth-largest city in Texas, Fort Worth (pop. 792,727) is home to some of the nation’s most prominent corporations, including Lockheed Martin and American Airlines. This vibrant city offers not only a bus system to its busy residents, but also an inner-city rail system that goes all the way to Dallas. For car owners, Fort Worth offers the advantage that auto insurance premiums are priced lower than the state average.
Galveston Auto Insurance
With one of the largest ports in the United States, Galveston (pop. 48,247) is a major hub for both business and tourism. As a coastal city in Tornado Alley, Galveston is also occasionally hit by hurricanes and flooding, which presents further challenges for car owners. Mass transit consists of a bus and streetcar system, so cars are plentiful here, but locals can take advantage of auto insurance premiums that cost slightly less than the state average.
Garland Auto Insurance
Just half an hour from Dallas, Garland (pop. 234,768) is one of the region’s primary manufacturing cities. Locals can enjoy the convenience of both a bus and a DART light rail system. Car insurance premiums, however, can cost a bit more than the state average here, so it pays to shop around.
Houston Auto Insurance
As the most populous city in Texas (and the fourth most populous in the country), Houston (pop. 2,196,631) is also the largest city in the South, which means it helps to have wheels to get around. Fortunately, wheels are available in the form of both bus and light rail systems, which takes some of the sting out of the fact that auto insurance premiums can be significantly higher here than the state average. Before buying insurance, be aware that Houston, like Galveston, is vulnerable to hurricanes and flooding, so buy as much protection as you can afford.
Irving Auto Insurance
Located just minutes from Dallas and Fort Worth, Irving (pop. 228,615) is headquarters to a number of major corporations, including Exxon-Mobil and Kimberly-Clark. This busy corporate metropolis offers both bus and light rail systems, making it easier for drivers to save money, wear, and tear on their cars. Car insurance premiums, however, cost roughly around the state average, so it helps to shop around for the best prices.
Laredo Auto Insurance
Boasting the nation’s largest inland port, Laredo (pop. 248,576) is home to many transportation companies. This busy metropolis is serviced by bus and trolley systems, so many prefer to have their own car. Auto insurance premiums, however, can be a bit higher than the state average here, so be prepared to do some Internet shopping for the lowest prices.
Lubbock Auto Insurance
Home to Texas Tech University, Lubbock (pop. 239,564) has a thriving business community and has been cited by CNN as one of the nation’s best cities for small business ownership. As the city is central to several major state highways, car ownership is high here, especially since there’s no rail system. For drivers, it’s a good idea to shop around for rates, because Lubbock car insurance premiums cost just below the state average.
Midland Auto Insurance
A strategic center for the state’s oil boom, Midland (pop. 123,996) has experienced a major population growth in the last several years, and this is reflected in the city’s car ownership as well. Locals can rely on a bus service, but for regular citywide commuting many prefer to drive and take advantage of the fact that Midland auto insurance premiums are significantly cheaper than the state average.
Odessa Auto Insurance
With an economy that’s heavily driven by the oil industry, Odessa (pop. 110,943) is a fast-growing metropolis that offers an efficient bus system but no rail services. So, many commuters prefer to drive, especially since car insurance premiums here can cost significantly less than the state average.
Plano Auto Insurance
Just 20 miles from Dallas, Plano (pop. 269,030) boasts a huge corporate presence, with home offices for companies such as Dell, Toyota, and Siemens Software. Locals can save gas by taking the bus or the light rail system, and can also save money on their auto insurance, with premium prices costing substantially less than the state average.
Richardson Auto Insurance
A suburb of Dallas, Richardson (pop. 104,802) is home to many international telecommunications companies, including AT&T, Verizon, and Texas Instruments. Getting around here is easy, thanks to both bus and DART light rail. For drivers, car insurance can be as pricey here as anywhere in the state, close to the average, so it might pay to do some shopping.
San Antonio Auto Insurance
With the second largest population in Texas, the city of San Antonio (pop. 92,325) offers commuters an extensive bus rapid transit system, but with no rail service, car ownership is high here. Drivers should be aware, however, that San Antonio is also one of the nation’s highest-risk areas for flash floods, so it’s a good idea to invest in as much insurance as you can afford. It helps to do some shopping here, because San Antonio auto insurance premiums level out about even with the state average.
Waco Auto Insurance
Home to famed Baylor University, Waco (pop. 129,726) has an active tourist economy, thanks to its history as a prominent Texas river town. Waco has also experienced some of the worst tornadoes in nation’s history, so plenty of auto insurance is a must. Since Waco has a bus service but no rail system, car ownership is high here, but drivers can take advantage of car insurance prices that can average substantially less than the state average.
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