Ohio Car Insurance: Get Coverage at the Lowest Rates
Ohio is one of the least expensive states for car insurance.
The average car insurance premium in Ohio is $952 a year for “full coverage” – only Idaho and Maine have lower average premium rates.
A major factor is the heavy competition of car insurers throughout the state, making it easier to find a more affordable rate than in practically any other state.
Even though Ohio has low insurance rates, it's still important to carry enough coverage to protect your assets – while still paying as little as possible for the premium.
Below is a guide in which we’ll be helping you find the right rate to match the type of coverage you'll need.
Average Car Insurance Rates in Ohio
Statewide average premiums in Ohio for three popular car insurance coverage levels (all premium information we’ll be providing comes from our sister site, CarInsurance.com) are as follows:
- “Full coverage” –100/300/100***, with comprehensive and collision coverage, including a deductible of $500: $952 per year
- Liability only, with 50/100/50: $381 per year
- Liability only, using the state minimum coverage levels: $383 per year
As helpful as it may be to know the average premium rate of car insurance in Ohio, it should serve only as a starting point.
This doesn’t mean that the averages will apply to you based on the coverage you choose.
Your rate will change depending on the variables factored into your driving profile and the policy provisions you select.
What coverage levels mean
(***100/300/100 refers to liability coverage levels.
- The first number represents bodily injury or death to one person in a single at-fault accident.
- The second number represents bodily injury or death to two or more people in a single at-fault car accident.
- The third number refers to property damage caused to other vehicles in an at-fault accident.
Full coverage also includes collision and comprehensive coverage, which pays for repairs to your vehicle no matter who is at fault.)
With statewide averages as a starting point only, let’s look at the many factors that will determine exactly what premium you’ll pay for car insurance in Ohio.
Factors that Will Affect Your Ohio Car Insurance Premium
Below are seven of the main factors that will determine the premium you’ll pay for Ohio car insurance.
This factor is more important if you’re under 25, but at higher ages there’s little difference if you are a man or woman.
For example, a 19-year-old woman in Columbus will pay $263 per month for full coverage, while a 19-year-old man will pay $317 per month for the same policy.
After age 25, the gender-based premium difference fades.
If you’re younger than 26, premiums will be a great deal higher, whereas 65 and over will only be slightly higher than the average rate.
For example, an 18-year-old male driver living in Columbus will pay $485 per month, or $5,820 per year, for 100/300/100 coverage. But a 30-year-old male with the same coverage will pay just $117 per month, or $1,404 per year.
A 75-year-old man with the same coverage, also living in Columbus, will pay $128 per month, or $1,536 per year. It’s only a little more than a 30-year-old male will pay for the same coverage, but it shows how car insurance premiums increase once you reach 65.
Your driving history is the most important factor when it comes to your insurance premium.
Lack-of a driving history explains high premiums for young drivers.
Speeding no more than 10-15 miles over the limit will produce a 21% premium increase, while speeding 30 or more miles over the limit will increase your premium by 38%.
The average increase in Ohio is 62% for a DUI/DWI first offense (subsequent offenses will be much higher and carry serious penalties).
The good news:
Moving violations is that they’ll fall off your driving record after three years.
A typical car insurance premium in Ohio will increase by 22% after an accident claim that’s determined to be your fault.
That’s just an average, since the premium increase will vary based on the dollar amount of any property damage claim, or if the accident resulted in bodily injury.
Insurance companies look to your credit history to determine your rate.
Ohio falls in the middle of the list of states for drivers with bad credit.
Bad credit drivers will pay an average of 68% more on their premium than a driver with good credit.
Just a refresher, a policy with liability limits of 100/300/100 is $952 per year, while liability coverage limits of 50/100/50 is $381.
For minimum liability, it’s $383 per year.
But be careful using coverage amounts to lower your premium. Your net worth should be matched with your liability limits.
For example, if your net worth is less than $50,000, choose at least 50/100/50. If your net worth is between $100,000 and $300,000, choose at least 100/300/100.
If your limits are too low, a major claim or lawsuit could force you to pay for any excess expenses out-of-pocket.
The age of your vehicle is a major factor.
An older vehicle will usually cost less than a brand-new vehicle to insure. And the more expensive a vehicle is, the more it will cost to insure.
Brand-new cars or certain vehicle types, like SUVs, pickup trucks, sports cars and luxury cars will cost more to insure than a 10-year-old sedan.
This is partly due to likelihood the older vehicle may not require collision and comprehensive coverage.
If your car is more than 10 years old, you may only need collision and comprehensive if it’s worth $3,000 or more, or if you can’t afford to replace your car if it’s totaled.
The Company You Buy Coverage From
People don’t always consider the impact of different companies when it comes to buying car insurance.
The differences in pricing for the same premium between multiple companies can amount to thousands of dollars.
Below are the average statewide premiums for full coverage (100/300/100) by six major carriers operating in Ohio:
- GEICO: $619 per year
- State Farm: $881 per year
- Farmers: $887 per year
- Progressive: $999 per year
- Nationwide: $1,015 per year
- Allstate,: $1,310 per year
Notice that Allstate, the most expensive provider, charges premiums that are over two times higher than Geico, the lowest-cost provider.
What is the Average Ohio Car Insurance Rate Based on Ohio City?
Even within the same state, there can be major variations in premium levels from one city or town to another.
With the statewide average premium at $952 in Ohio for 100/300/100 coverage, average premiums on a local level are as follows:
- Akron: $1,347
- Cincinnati: $1,331
- Cleveland: $1,377
- Columbus: $1,304
- Toledo: $1,405
Car insurance will most likely be higher in more populated areas like a big city.
More people means more traffic and potential for accidents. Rural and more remote towns will have lower rates.
Auto Insurance Laws in Ohio
Ohio car insurance laws require that drivers carry minimum liability coverage limits of 25/50/25 on their vehicle.
The minimum car insurance requirements in Ohio are listed below:
- Minimum bodily injury liability – $25,000/$50,000
- Minimum property damage liability – $25,000
This coverage requirement is described as “25/50/25”.
Comparative negligence law
It holds that responsibility in an accident can be shared.
It’s a complicated provision, but it basically holds that if you could have “reasonably” done anything to avoid an accident, you may be deemed partially responsible.
It also means if you are 50% or less at fault in an accident, you can receive compensation from the other driver’s insurance policy.
Basic Information on Optional Coverages in Ohio
As is the case in virtually every other state, there’s a wide range of optional coverages available to add to your policy in Ohio.
As is the case in other states, there are a large number of optional car insurance provisions in Ohio:
Even though it’s against the law, a large number of people drive without car insurance. Even more have nothing more than minimum coverage.
If you’re involved in an accident with either type of driver, their coverage may be insufficient to compensate you for losses. This provision will make up the difference.
This provision will pay for damages to your vehicle, regardless of who is at fault.
The state-required property damage will only cover damage to the other party's vehicle when you are at fault.
This provision will have a deductible and will be required by the lender. If your vehicle has either a loan or a lease on it.
This provision will cover your vehicle for damage sustained while it’s parked. This includes theft, damage from falling objects, and weather-related hazards, like storm damage, or animal strikes.
Gap insurance will pay the difference between the value of your car and the balance left on your loan/lease.
Gap insurance is recommended if your car is less than a year old and you’ve paid less than 20% on it. If you already own your car in full, gap insurance is not recommended.
Medical payments (MedPay)
Covers medical and funeral expenses of covered drivers and passengers after an accident up to $25,000, no matter who's at fault.
This provides you and your passengers with coverage of medical expenses as well as if your health insurance limits are exceeded.
MedPay also provides protection to insured drivers hit by a car while walking or biking. It’s strongly recommended if you don’t have health insurance.
Tips to Get the Best Rates on Ohio Car Insurance Policies
Below are the most popular strategies to get the best rates on car insurance in Ohio:
Poor driving history can have the most impact on your premium. Drive safe and avoid any violations or at-fault accidents.
A clean driving history for 3 years or more will provide you with the best rates available.
Complete a safe driver course
If you have a poor driving history, your insurance company may allow you to complete an approved safe driver course. That may minimize the damage from your driving history and give you a better rate.
Shop for the lowest cost provider
Shop around and see who has the best rates. The difference in premiums between companies can be hundreds or even thousands for the same amount of coverage.
Increase your deductible
If you have a $500 deductible, increasing it to $1,000 can save you hundreds of dollars on your annual premium.
Take any discounts you can get
Check with your insurance company to see how many discounts they have available. Take advantage of any and all that apply to you.
Keep your credit clean
Keeping your credit clean for at least the last two or three years will help you secure a better rate.
Even though Ohio is one of the cheapest states for car insurance, it's still important that you find the right amount of coverage for a price that works for you.
Refer to the tips above for assistance in finding the best policy to fit your needs.