Best Car Insurance in North Carolina
Last Updated on August 21, 2021
North Carolina has lower than average car insurance premiums compared to the rest of the United States. Although North Carolina isn’t the cheapest state for car insurance, it’s far from the most expensive. On average, a driver in North Carolina can expect to pay around $1,256 for one year of full coverage car insurance.
What are the best auto insurance companies in North Carolina? What are North Carolina’s auto insurance rules and requirements? How can high-risk drivers in North Carolina find cheap insurance? Continue reading below to learn everything you need to know about auto insurance in North Carolina.
Table of Contents
- Best Auto Insurance Companies in North Carolina
- North Carolina Auto Insurance Requirements
- Driving Without Insurance in North Carolina
- Car Insurance in North Carolina with a DUI
- Car Insurance in North Carolina with At-Fault Accidents
- Car Insurance in North Carolina with Speeding Tickets
- Car Insurance in North Carolina for Young Drivers
- Car Insurance in North Carolina with Poor Credit
- SR-22 Insurance in North Carolina
Top 10 Auto Insurance Companies in North Carolina
Some companies are known for charging relatively cheap rates across the Tar Heel state. These companies emphasize good value without compromising on customer service or claims satisfaction. The best car insurance companies in North Carolina, ranked by price, include:
If you qualify for membership with USAA, it tends to be the best option for drivers across North Carolina. USAA charges less than $850 per year for car insurance across the state, with the average driver paying roughly $843 for full coverage car insurance with USAA.
|9800 Fredericksburg Road
San Antonio, TX 78288
2) Erie Insurance
Erie Insurance is a popular and well-rated car insurance company in North Carolina. It’s not the largest or best-known insurance company in the United States, but Erie maintains a good reputation in North Carolina and elsewhere. The average Erie policyholder pays roughly $867 for one year of full coverage car insurance in North Carolina.
|100 Erie Insurance Place
Erie, PA 16530
GEICO is one of the cheapest car insurance providers in virtually every state. The company emphasizes good value, charging drivers roughly $902 per year for car insurance in North Carolina. Although GEICO has average ratings for claims satisfaction and customer service, the company is often the best choice in North Carolina based solely on price.
|5260 Western Avenue
Chevy Chase, MD 20815
4) North Carolina Farm Bureau
North Carolina Farm Bureau is available across the state, offering competitive prices and strong claims satisfaction to drivers of all ages and experience levels. North Carolina Farm Bureau charges roughly $915 per year, on average, for full coverage car insurance.
|North Carolina Farm Bureau Insurance
|P.O. Box 27427
Raleigh, NC 27611
Progressive insures millions of drivers across the United States, and they have a relatively strong presence in North Carolina. The average progressive policyholder in North Carolina pays approximately $1,035 per year for car insurance.
|6300 Wilson Mills Road
Mayfield Village, OH 44143
6) State Farm
State Farm is America’s biggest car insurance company, which is why they appear on virtually every list of each state’s best insurance companies. State Farm has a proven reputation and decades of experience, and they continue to charge some of the lowest prices in North Carolina. The average State Farm drivers pays approximately $1,042 per year for car insurance.
|1 State Farm Plaza
Bloomington, IL 61701
Allstate insures millions of drivers across the country, and they’re a good choice for car insurance in North Carolina. Allstate has a relatively low complaint index compared to competing providers listed here. The average Allstate drivers pays approximately $1,145 per year for car insurance.
|2775 Sanders Road
Northbrook, IL 60062
Auto-Owners sells car insurance to drivers across North Carolina, maintaining affordable prices while providing good coverage and claims satisfaction. The average Auto-Owners policyholder in North Carolina pays roughly $1,152 per year for coverage.
| 6101 Anacapri Blvd.
Lansing MI, 48917
Nationwide is available across North Carolina, charging drivers affordable prices while having similar claims satisfaction and customer service to other big-box insurance companies listed here. Expect to pay approximately $1,203 per year for car insurance with Nationwide in North Carolina.
|One Nationwide Plaza
Columbus, OH 43215
10) National General
North Carolina is one of the few states where National General appears on the list of the best insurance companies. Although not as well-known as competing insurers above, National General is often the best insurance provider for drivers with bad credit or a bad driving record. The average National General driver pays roughly $2,023 per year for car insurance.
|P.O. Box 3199
Winston-Salem, NC 27102
North Carolina Insurance Requirements
All vehicles with a valid North Carolina registration are required to maintain continuous liability insurance coverage. It is illegal to drive without car insurance in North Carolina.
Minimum car insurance requirements in North Carolina include:
- $30,000 of bodily injury liability coverage per person
- $60,000 of bodily injury liability coverage per accident
- $25,000 of property damage liability coverage
Overall, North Carolina has similar car insurance requirements to most other states.
Any policy you buy from a licensed insurance company in North Carolina will (at least) meet these minimum requirements. Many drivers choose to exceed these requirements for added protection.
When comparing quotes from an insurance company, this minimum policy would be expressed as a 30/60/25 plan.
Driving without Insurance in North Carolina
Driving without car insurance in North Carolina is illegal. If you are caught driving without insurance in North Carolina, then you could face fines, loss of driving privileges, and other penalties.
Punishment varies based on whether this is your first, second, or third offense:
- First Offense: $50 fee per license, $50 reinstatement fee, registration suspended for 30 days
- Second Offense: $100 fee per license, $50 reinstatement fee, registration suspended for 30 days
- Third and Subsequent Offenses: $150 fee per license, $50 reinstatement fee, registration suspended for 30 days
North Carolina’s DMV will send a warning to any driver whose car insurance has lapsed. Your insurance company notifies the DMV when you cancel or drop coverage. To prevent vehicle registration from being canceled, you must submit proof of insurance to the DMV within 10 days of the date printed on the notice.
Although North Carolina has relatively light penalties for driving without insurance, each insurer may charge additional penalties or higher rates. If you have an uninsured driver conviction on your record, it could raise rates significantly for 3 to 7 years.
Car Insurance in North Carolina with DUI
Being convicted of a DUI in North Carolina will lead to higher auto insurance premiums. Getting a DUI is a sign you’re a high-risk driver. Insurance companies charge higher rates to offset this risk.
Fortunately for drivers with a DUI, some car insurance companies treat DUIs differently than others. The best car insurance companies for drivers with a DUI include:
- GEICO: $2,304 per year
- USAA: $2,455 per year
- National General: $2,621 per year
- Erie: $3,004 per year
- State Farm: $4,334 per year
Insurance companies in North Carolina raise rates 40% to 80% after a DUI conviction, with some insurers almost doubling rates after a DUI conviction.
Car Insurance in North Carolina with At-Fault Accidents
However, some insurance companies are less strict with at-fault accidents than others. Some have accident forgiveness systems in place. Others overlook a minor accident if it’s your first offense.
The best car insurance companies in North Carolina for drivers with at-fault accidents include:
- North Carolina Farm Bureau: $1,422 per year
- Erie: $1,506 per year
- State Farm: $1,563 per year
- GEICO: $1,602 per year
- National General: $1,834 per year
Car Insurance in North Carolina with Speeding Tickets
Car insurance rates may raise after a speeding ticket, especially if you were speeding excessively at the time of the ticket. However, some insurance companies overlook a single speeding ticket on an otherwise clean record.
The cheapest car insurance providers in North Carolina for drivers with a speeding ticket include:
- USAA: $856 per year
- GEICO: $945 per year
- State Farm: $1,034 per year
- Allstate: $1,102 per year
- National General: $1,509 per year
Car Insurance in North Carolina for Young Drivers
Young drivers are the riskiest drivers to insure in every state, which is why they pay more for car insurance in North Carolina and all other states.
Fortunately, some car insurance companies welcome young drivers into their insurance pool to balance out risk and premiums. Other insurance companies dislike having young drivers in their pool, charging relatively high rates for car insurance.
The best car insurance companies in North Carolina for young drivers include:
- GEICO: $1,304 per year
- Erie: $1,453 per year
- Progressive: $1,563 per year
- North Carolina Farm Bureau: $1,628 per year
- National General: $1,709 per year
The rates above are based on a young driver (under 25) with a clean driving record. If you are a teenage driver, or if you have at-fault accidents and other issues on your driving record, then you could pay significantly higher rates for car insurance than listed above.
Car Insurance in North Carolina with Poor Credit
Insurance companies in North Carolina use a credit-based insurance score to calculate risk. Drivers with a low credit score are significantly riskier to insure than drivers with a high credit score.
If you are a North Carolina driver with bad credit, consider requesting a quote from the following companies:
- GEICO: $1,104 per year
- National General: $1,450 per year
- Progressive: $1,543 per year
- North Carolina Farm Bureau: $1,698 per year
- Erie: $1,711 per year
The rates above are based on full coverage car insurance for a driver with a bad credit score and a clean driving record.
SR-22 Insurance in North Carolina
North Carolina uses the SR-22 system to ensure high-risk drivers have valid car insurance. You may be required to obtain an SR-22 certificate if you let car insurance lapse, caused an accident, or committed a serious offense – like a DUI.
An SR-22 in North Carolina is not considered car insurance: it’s just a certificate verifying you have valid car insurance.
North Carolina has three types of SR-22 certificates, including:
- Operator SR-22 Certificate: Verifies financial responsibility for drivers who operate a vehicle but do not own one.
- Owner SR-22 Certificate: Verifies financial responsibility for drivers who own and operate a vehicle.
- Operator-Owner SR-22 Certificate: Verifies financial responsibility for all vehicles owned or not owned by the driver.
Most car insurance companies in North Carolina will be able to provide the SR-22 certificate. However, if you are a particularly high-risk driver, then you may need to work with a specialty high-risk car insurance company to obtain coverage.
The most common reasons you need an SR-22 certificate include driving while uninsured, driving under the influence, driving while intoxicated, or receiving multiple traffic convictions. If you have had your license suspended for any reason, then you will also need to obtain SR-22 insurance in North Carolina to reinstate your license.
Conclusion: How to Find the Best Auto Insurance in North Carolina
North Carolina car insurance is relatively affordable compared to other states. By shopping around for car insurance and picking the right provider, North Carolina drivers can save even more on car insurance.