Whether you live in the middle of Charlotte or along the beach in Emerald Isle, North Carolina is a beautiful state. And it’s generally cheaper to live in North Carolina than in other states. According to the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis, North Carolina was the 23rd lowest-cost state in the country, which means 27 states are more expensive.
North Carolina’s lower costs carry over to car insurance, too. Although the national average for full coverage car insurance is $1,582, the average cost of car insurance in North Carolina is $1,275.
- Key takeaways
- How much does car insurance cost in North Carolina?
- Average cost of car insurance in North Carolina by provider
- How does credit score affect car insurance rates in North Carolina?
- Average car insurance rates for high-risk drivers in North Carolina
- How does age affect car insurance rates in North Carolina?
- North Carolina car insurance rates by city
- NC's minimum car insurance requirements
- How to save money on car insurance in North Carolina
- FAQs about car insurance costs in NC
- The average cost of full coverage car insurance in North Carolina is $1,275 per year.
- North Carolina requires all drivers to have liability policies.
- State-minimum coverage averages $489 per year.
How much does car insurance cost in North Carolina?
In North Carolina, full coverage insurance — which includes comprehensive, collision, and liability coverage — averages $1,275 per year, compared to the national average of $1,582.
|Avg. cost for full coverage||Avg. cost for minimum coverage||Cheapest insurance provider|
|Avg. for young drivers||Avg. cost for seniors||Avg. for high-risk drivers|
Average cost of car insurance in North Carolina by provider
There are several auto insurance companies licensed to issue policies in North Carolina. Erie was generally the cheapest car insurance for both full coverage and minimum liability policies.
Some companies, such as Allstate or Progressive, were significantly more expensive, charging hundreds more per year than Erie.
|Provider||Full coverage||Minimum liability coverage|
How does credit score affect car insurance rates in North Carolina?
Although some states prohibit insurers from using credit information to determine car insurance premiums, North Carolina doesn’t have that limitation.
Insurers in North Carolina can use your credit scores as the sole reason for discounting your premiums, so having good credit can help you save money.
The average premium for someone with a credit score of 750 or higher was $1,114 per year, a savings of more than $500 compared to the average rates for drivers with poor credit.
|Credit health||Avg. annual premium|
Average car insurance rates for high-risk drivers in North Carolina
High-risk drivers are those who are more likely to have insurance claims than other drivers. A high-risk driver can be a new or teen driver, someone with past driving infractions, or someone with a history of at-fault accidents.
Whether you’ve been in a car accident, received a speeding ticket, or were convicted of driving under the influence (DUI), you should expect your car insurance premiums to increase by hundreds or even thousands of dollars. A single speeding ticket can increase your premiums by $559, whereas a DUI will cause your premiums to skyrocket by about $2,862.
|Violation||Avg. annual premium before violation*||Avg. annual premium after violation||Avg. cost increase|
*Assumes clean driving record with good credit
How does age affect car insurance rates in North Carolina?
As is common in every state, young drivers in North Carolina pay substantially more for car insurance than other age groups. The average premium for teens is significantly higher than the state average, whereas North Carolina drivers in their 20s will pay about the same as the state average.
|Age||Avg. annual premium|
North Carolina car insurance rates by city
When it comes to your auto insurance premiums, where you live plays a role in determining what you pay. Urban areas tend to be more expensive, and living in cities with higher rates of theft or accidents will cause your premiums to increase.
Fayetteville is not a particularly large city — its population is about 200,000 — but it has a high crime rate. NeighborhoodScout named Fayetteville as one of the 100 most dangerous cities in 2023. With those ratings in mind, it’s no surprise that full-coverage premiums in Fayetteville tend to be more expensive than in other cities in North Carolina.
|City||Avg. annual full-coverage premium|
NC's minimum car insurance requirements
In North Carolina, drivers must meet the following insurance requirements:
- All vehicles registered in the state must have continuous liability coverage from an insurer licensed within the state. Out-of-state insurers aren’t accepted.
- Minimum coverage requirements are as follows:
- $30,000 bodily injury for one person
- $60,000 bodily injury for two or more people
- $25,000 property damage
Keep in mind those are the state minimums for these coverage types. Depending on your circumstances, you may need more coverage as part of your auto insurance policy, and you may need to purchase comprehensive coverage or collision insurance, too.
How to save money on car insurance in North Carolina
To save money on North Carolina auto insurance, use these tips:
- Shop around. Rates and available discounts vary by insurer, so it’s smart to shop around and get car insurance quotes from multiple insurers. To get started, check out our picks for the best car insurance companies of 2023.
- Bundle your coverage. Some insurers offer multi-policy discounts for those who have multiple insurance policies. For example, you may qualify for discounts on your car insurance if you have a homeowners or renters insurance policy with the same company.
- Ask about discounts. You may qualify for additional discounts for paying your premiums for the year upfront, being a safe driver, or maintaining good grades.
- Improve your credit. In North Carolina, having very good to excellent credit can help you secure a lower premium. Make all of your monthly payments on time, pay down credit card balances, and limit credit inquiries to potentially boost your credit score.
- Adjust your deductible. In general, a lower deductible will cause your premiums to increase. Raising your deductible can give you a more affordable monthly premium.
Our analysis was conducted using six different auto insurance marketplaces to determine the average cost of auto insurance in each state. The data we analyzed included coverage premiums from up to 10 different insurance providers. We looked at rates by city, driver profile, and credit score, as well as factored in the impact of driving violations. This data is for comparative purposes only. Your actual quote may be different.
FAQs about car insurance costs in NC
Is car insurance expensive in NC?
Car insurance in North Carolina is $1,275, compared to the national average of $1,582 for auto insurance rates. That’s true for both liability-only coverage and full coverage insurance.
How much is car insurance per year in NC?
The average cost for full coverage insurance in North Carolina is $1,275 per year, and the average price for state-minimum coverage is $489 per year.
How much you’ll pay for car insurance in North Carolina will depend on several factors, including your age, driving history, and credit score.