Comprehensive and Collision Insurance

In most states, you are required to have liability insurance, which covers you for claims made by the other driver. You may also be required to purchase personal injury protection insurance and uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage.

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These are some great coverage options to have even when they are not mandatory, but they’re not the only ones. You can also add collision coverage and comprehensive coverage to your insurance policy. Although they are not required in any state, adding these options to your car insurance policy will cover you for more eventualities and ensure you’re not left with major out-of-pocket expenses following an accident.

In this guide, we’ll see what these two options cover, how much they cost in every state, and how you can get full coverage car insurance without paying thousands of dollars a year.

What is Collision Insurance?

While liability insurance pays for the damage done to other vehicles, collision insurance covers the damage done to yours. It will also cover you for all of the following:

  • Hitting a Tree
  • Hitting a Telephone Pole
  • A Flip or Rollover
  • Running a Curb
  • Hitting a Pothole
  • ​Backing into a Wall
  • Backing into Another Car
  • Hitting a Building

As with all types of insurance, collision coverage comes with a deductible. The deductible amount can range from a few hundred dollars to $1,000, on average. The higher it is, the lower the premiums will be.

Because of this deductible, and the increased premiums that can result from an insurance claim, you may want to think twice about making a claim following a ding or scratch.

By all means, claim if you hit another vehicle and do serious damage. But if you scrape the building when doing through a drive-thru or suffer some other minor damage that doesn’t involve another car, it may be cheaper in the long-run if you just pay the repair costs yourself.

What is Comprehensive Insurance?

Comprehensive car insurance covers you for many things not covered by collision insurance, including:

  • Vandalism
  • Theft
  • Glass damage
  • Damage from floods, hailstorms, and winds
  • Civil disturbances
  • Fire
  • Falling objects
  • Natural disasters
  • Animal collisions

Surprisingly, animal collisions are covered by comprehensive coverage and not collision coverage. The irony here, however, is that collision insurance will cover you if you swerve to avoid the animal but hit a wall. If you break quickly, brace for impact, and don’t swerve, as many experts recommend, you’ll only be covered if you have comprehensive auto insurance coverage.

State by State Cost of Collision Insurance and Comprehensive Insurance

The national average for collision insurance is between $500 and $600 while comprehensive insurance falls somewhere between $150 and $250. But depending on where you live, you could find yourself paying a lot less and even a lot more.

Car insurance premiums differ considerably from state to state, as underwriters consider everything from the number of car accidents and thefts in your area to the number of cars on the road and the likelihood of floods, storms, and animal collisions.

Take a look at the state average below to better understand how much these two coverage options cost in your area.

  • Alabama: Average Cost of Comprehensive Coverage = $160; Average Cost of Collision Coverage = $570.
  • Alaska: Average Cost of Comprehensive Coverage = $140; Average Cost of Collision Coverage = $630.
  • Arizona: Average Cost of Comprehensive Coverage = $160; Average Cost of Collision Coverage = $500.
  • Arkansas: Average Cost of Comprehensive Coverage = $250; Average Cost of Collision Coverage = $580.
  • California: Average Cost of Comprehensive Coverage = $150; Average Cost of Collision Coverage = $1,000.
  • Colorado: Average Cost of Comprehensive Coverage = $240; Average Cost of Collision Coverage = $510.
  • Connecticut: Average Cost of Comprehensive Coverage = $120; Average Cost of Collision Coverage = $690.
  • D.C.: Average Cost of Comprehensive Coverage = $170; Average Cost of Collision Coverage = $650.
  • Delaware: Average Cost of Comprehensive Coverage = $100; Average Cost of Collision Coverage = $530.
  • Florida: Average Cost of Comprehensive Coverage = $160; Average Cost of Collision Coverage = $490.
  • Georgia: Average Cost of Comprehensive Coverage = $160; Average Cost of Collision Coverage = $550.
  • Hawaii: Average Cost of Comprehensive Coverage = $100; Average Cost of Collision Coverage = $560.
  • Idaho: Average Cost of Comprehensive Coverage = $140; Average Cost of Collision Coverage = $430.
  • Illinois: Average Cost of Comprehensive Coverage = $120; Average Cost of Collision Coverage = $480.
  • Indiana: Average Cost of Comprehensive Coverage = $150; Average Cost of Collision Coverage = $520.
  • Iowa: Average Cost of Comprehensive Coverage = $250; Average Cost of Collision Coverage = $390.
  • Kansas: Average Cost of Comprehensive Coverage = $430; Average Cost of Collision Coverage = $470.
  • Kentucky: Average Cost of Comprehensive Coverage = $290; Average Cost of Collision Coverage = $570.
  • Louisiana: Average Cost of Comprehensive Coverage = $250; Average Cost of Collision Coverage = $670.
  • Maine: Average Cost of Comprehensive Coverage = $80; Average Cost of Collision Coverage = $410.
  • Maryland: Average Cost of Comprehensive Coverage = $140; Average Cost of Collision Coverage = $580.
  • Massachusetts: Average Cost of Comprehensive Coverage = $170; Average Cost of Collision Coverage = $555.
  • Michigan: Average Cost of Comprehensive Coverage = $250; Average Cost of Collision Coverage = $920.
  • Minnesota: Average Cost of Comprehensive Coverage = $230; Average Cost of Collision Coverage = $390.
  • Mississippi: Average Cost of Comprehensive Coverage = $220; Average Cost of Collision Coverage = $490.
  • Missouri: Average Cost of Comprehensive Coverage = $300; Average Cost of Collision Coverage = $480.
  • Montana: Average Cost of Comprehensive Coverage = $330; Average Cost of Collision Coverage = $540.
  • Nebraska: Average Cost of Comprehensive Coverage = $350; Average Cost of Collision Coverage = $410.
  • Nevada: Average Cost of Comprehensive Coverage = $150; Average Cost of Collision Coverage = $600.
  • New Hampshire: Average Cost of Comprehensive Coverage = $90; Average Cost of Collision Coverage = $480.
  • New Jersey: Average Cost of Comprehensive Coverage = $100; Average Cost of Collision Coverage = $450.
  • New Mexico: Average Cost of Comprehensive Coverage = $200; Average Cost of Collision Coverage = $460.
  • New York: Average Cost of Comprehensive Coverage = $140; Average Cost of Collision Coverage = $700.
  • North Carolina: Average Cost of Comprehensive Coverage = $120; Average Cost of Collision Coverage = $415.
  • North Dakota: Average Cost of Comprehensive Coverage = $340; Average Cost of Collision Coverage = $430.
  • Ohio: Average Cost of Comprehensive Coverage = $100; Average Cost of Collision Coverage = $400.
  • Oklahoma: Average Cost of Comprehensive Coverage = $380; Average Cost of Collision Coverage = $540.
  • Oregon: Average Cost of Comprehensive Coverage = $100; Average Cost of Collision Coverage = $440.
  • Pennsylvania: Average Cost of Comprehensive Coverage = $150; Average Cost of Collision Coverage = $620.
  • Rhode Island: Average Cost of Comprehensive Coverage = $120; Average Cost of Collision Coverage = $730.
  • South Carolina: Average Cost of Comprehensive Coverage = $310; Average Cost of Collision Coverage = $610.
  • South Dakota: Average Cost of Comprehensive Coverage = $460; Average Cost of Collision Coverage = $420.
  • Tennessee: Average Cost of Comprehensive Coverage = $140; Average Cost of Collision Coverage = $505.
  • Texas: Average Cost of Comprehensive Coverage = $230; Average Cost of Collision Coverage = $530.
  • Utah: Average Cost of Comprehensive Coverage = $100; Average Cost of Collision Coverage = $420.
  • Vermont: Average Cost of Comprehensive Coverage = $140; Average Cost of Collision Coverage = $465.
  • Virginia: Average Cost of Comprehensive Coverage = $100; Average Cost of Collision Coverage = $380.
  • Washington: Average Cost of Comprehensive Coverage = $90; Average Cost of Collision Coverage = $380.
  • West Virginia: Average Cost of Comprehensive Coverage = $180; Average Cost of Collision Coverage = $465.
  • Wisconsin: Average Cost of Comprehensive Coverage = $220; Average Cost of Collision Coverage = $460.
  • Wyoming: Average Cost of Comprehensive Coverage = $350; Average Cost of Collision Coverage = $650.

How to Save on Collision and Comprehensive Insurance Cover

Michigan-based drivers could find themselves paying over $1,300 for these two additional coverage options, and that’s just the average. If you’re a young driver with several speeding tickets, at-fault accidents, and other high-risk factors, and you account for liability coverage, the costs will spiral and could leave you seriously out of pocket.

Fortunately, there are a few ways you can save, bringing the cost of collision and comprehensive auto insurance down to a respectable and affordable level.

Bundle Your Insurance Policies

Bundling is the act of buying multiple insurance policies from the same company. Many insurers will give you a discount of up to 30% if you purchase home insurance and auto insurance through them, and most auto insurers will offer you discounts if you add multiple cars onto a single policy.

Fix Your Credit Score

Everyone understands the importance of a good credit score when it comes to home loans, car loans, and credit cards, but this three-digit number is also important when applying for auto insurance policies.

Underwriters know that bad credit drivers are more likely to be involved in car accidents and to make claims. As a result, they give good credit drivers much lower rates.

By making a few small changes to your finances, including increasing your credit limits, paying off as much of your debt as you can, and avoiding any new credit applications, you can make quick and noticeable changes to your credit score, and these can improve your chances of getting cheap car insurance coverage.

Pay a Higher Deductible

As noted already, when you pay a higher deductible, your premiums will drop as it decreases the insurer’s outgoings. It will mean you’ll pay more in the event of a claim, but it’ll also reduce your payments and you’ll be much better off in the long run if you avoid making any claims.

Choose Your Car Carefully

The age and value of your vehicle have a big impact on the types of coverage that you need, as well as the coverage limits. A new car has a high cash value, may cost more to repair, and simply cannot be written off following a catastrophic crash. 

If you have a new car, you’ll want to have full coverage and can expect to pay high car insurance rates as a result. You’ll also lose a lot of money on the car purchase itself, as brand-new vehicles depreciate rapidly, losing as much as 20% in the first year and 10% per year thereafter.

By purchasing a car that is a few years old, you’ll still get something that is relatively new, but you won’t pay through the nose for it and you can think twice about getting extensive and costly cover. If it has a high safety rating and lots of important safety features, you will save even more.

Job-Based Discounts

Car insurance companies may offer cheaper insurance quotes if you are employed in one of the following professions:

  • Doctors and Nurses
  • Scientists
  • Law Enforcement
  • Certified Accountants
  • Engineers
  • Teachers
  • Military Personnel
  • First Responders

Ask the insurance company if you can qualify for any of these discounts as many of them won’t offer them outright.

Remove Unnecessary Optional Coverage

Insurance companies will offer you optional extras like rental car cover, roadside assistance, and pet injury cover. Some of these will be bundled into your comprehensive injury coverage and are definitely worth having when that is the case. But if you’re paying extra for them and adding them willingly, you might want to think twice.

This is especially true for roadside assistance, which is often charged as an added extra but is also offered everywhere from auto clubs to premium credit cards.

Get Usage-Based Discounts

Most of the industry’s biggest insurers offer usage-based discounts. They will install telematics devices in your car and track your driving habits, recording everything from the time of day that you drive to the amount of time you spend looking at your phone, and more. They offer discounts just for signing up to these programs and many also promise that your rates won’t increase, so you have nothing to lose.

If you don’t drive that many miles and are a safe and responsible driver, these apps could save you a lot of money.

Drop Coverage Options

If your auto insurance coverage options are persistently high, and you can’t find reasonable and affordable rates no matter how many insurers you compare, it could be time to reduce liability limits and coverage options.

If your state doesn’t require it, you don’t have an expensive car, and there aren’t many uninsured motorists in your state, do you need uninsured motorist cover? If you don’t have many assets, do you really need to get more than the minimum bodily injury and property damage liability cover?

These are the questions that you need to ask yourself and, if possible, you should ask them before you purchase your car. Many drivers, especially those getting behind the wheel for the first time, will spend all their money on a new car and only then start looking for insurance.

Once they do, they realize they have made a mistake. By doing this research in advance, the reality of the situation will sink in before you make that decision and you can get a more suitable car.