South Carolina is a haven for people who want cheap car insurance because of the laws that are unique to the state along with the rural landscape of the state. SC is a state that has few cities and a lot of countryside, which means that insurance premiums are at an all time low on average throughout the state. Typical insurance rates are about $100 a month or more. The average car insurance rates per month are much higher in most other states. So South Carolina’s rates are some of the best nationwide.
This is good news for anyone looking for cheap car insurance in SC, but it gets better. Residents can cut even more off their monthly premium payments as long as they are wise about their coverage and the company they choose. If you are in SC and are looking for cheap SC car insurance policies, learn to shop around and ask for quotes. This is the best way to get an accurate representation of the premiums in the state.
You might find a difference of hundreds of dollars between the cheapest and the most expensive car insurance companies in SC. State Farm is among the cheapest, with premiums totalling about $400 a year for the lowest coverage. Since insurance premiums are different for different people, you may find that a different company does the job for you. Remember that each rate is unique, so the only way to know about your own is to ask for quotes.
Best Cheap Auto Insurance in SC
Car insurance companies don’t just calculate your rate on a whim. They use a precise algorithm that makes use of your age, record, history, credit rating, type of vehicle, and your income. The best way to get yourself a good deal on your insurance is to request all the car insurance quotes SC has to offer. Try to get at least five quotes from different companies to start.
The process of obtaining a quote from a car insurance company in SC isn’t that hard as long as you have all the necessary information on hand. Most companies have their quote request system online, which means that the entire process will take about ten minutes of your time for each company. Now, the time it takes shouldn’t matter to you. If you do enough work, you can save hundreds of dollars down the road.
Here are the five best auto insurance companies in SC based on their ranking on J.D. Power and A.M. Best:
State Farm is the first as it is the cheapest, with premiums of only about $400 a year. GEICO Insurance SC was second with a large difference: $662 a year. Allstate Insurance and Nationwide had rates of $850 and $950 respectively, while Progressive was the most expensive at $1040. Remember that these rates can be different for you based on your own information when requesting that quote. We recommend comparing car insurance companies near you.
Price Optimization in South Carolina
Price Optimization is a very unethical process employed by some insurance companies. Most of the larger companies use it to check if you are someone who is likely to stop working with them if they jack your prices up. They do this by analyzing a lot of your personal data, including your web history and shopping habits online. After running this, they figure out if you would be too angry about a small increase in your insurance rates. If they think you can take it, they will do it without a second thought.
While this might seem unfair to you, it is the sad truth. You can avoid it by shopping around online for a brand new policy at a different insurer. You might not want a new policy, but this new activity on your online profile will scare your current insurer into keeping your rates as they are – they don’t want to lose your business!
Now, price optimization feels a little illegal, doesn’t it? Because of this, over 15 states in the USA have now banned insurance companies from using it on you. South Carolina has not. This means that any company can do this to you and not be responsible according to the law. Your money is as safe as you make it. Shop around the insurance market to keep your current company on its toes.
The Minimum Coverage in SC
In South Carolina, the minimum coverage is liability insurance and uninsured motorist coverage. Liability insurance covers you if there are damages caused in a collision in which you are the person at fault. Uninsured motorist covers you if the person who hit you in an accident doesn’t have insurance or has insurance that isn’t enough to cover all of your expenses due to the collision.
Your minimums for liability coverage in South Carolina are $25000 for injuries per person, $50000 for the accident, and $25000 for damage to property. This is referred to as 25/50/25 by insurance companies. The uninsured motorist coverage must be in the same ratio. In addition to this, there are those motorists who are registered uninsured motorists, which means that they don’t need insurance to drive.
In cases like this, your Uninsured Motorist coverage will be useless. However, there is another system at work here. According to the tort law in SC, if you are involved in an accident with a motorist who is registered and uninsured, they have to pay the damages out of their own pockets. If they are unable to do so, you have the legal right to take them to court for the money you are owed. Even with this, they may still never pay you all of it.
Is Minimum Coverage Really the Best?
Cheap car insurance in SC is highly coveted by everyone with a car. As such, it might be tempting to buy a plan with minimum coverage as required by law. However, you have to think about certain other things. For one, do you want to save money right now in the hundreds or later in the tens of thousands?
If you get yourself the minimum coverage, there is a high chance that you won’t be able to cover all the damages caused by an accident at which you were at fault. The balance after insurance was paid out would have to be covered by yourself out of your savings.
Now, if you were unable to pay this amount you would have to file for bankruptcy. The consequences are terrible indeed. There is a way to save yourself from this fate – get a larger insurance coverage. Most of the larger coverage’s will only cost you about $10 extra each month but will save you from bankruptcy in the event of an accident. More coverage is sometimes referred to as “Full coverage insurance“.
The Law for Being an Uninsured Driver
With insurance being rather expensive and complicated, you might be tempted to take the risk and drive without insurance. Do not do this. If you are an uninsured, unregistered driver in South Carolina, you are liable to suffer consequences like:
- The suspension of your license and your vehicle registration
- A $550 fine for getting the license back
- An SR22 filed three years after getting caught
Getting busted for being uninsured will make your insurance premiums rise when you do try and get insured.
Why Does SC Have Low Rates?
If you are looking for cheap car insurance in SC, you should understand that both North Carolina and South Carolina have a reputation for being good with their rates. The average rate in the USA is higher than the average rate in SC, and remains so for just about any coverage type you want to get.
The lower rates in the states of Carolina to the North and the South are due in part to the rural landscapes of the regions. Over 90% of SC is rural area according to the Census of the USA. Insurance companies love it when the region is rural because it is automatically less congested on the roads. Because of this and the lower population density, there are less accidents caused overall and a lower crime rate too, which makes it less likely for your car to be vandalized or stolen. Due to these lowered risks, the insurance companies can afford to reduce the premiums by a good amount.
In addition to this, the insurance premiums in SC are lower because of the way the law of the state is structured. It is a tort system as opposed to the no-fault system. A no-fault law is one where if you are involved in an accident, you have to pay your own damages regardless of who caused the accident. Medical bills go the same way with no regard for where the blame lies.
Drivers in states with no-fault laws are responsible for carrying special personal injury coverage on their insurance, which leads to higher premiums than in states like SC where the law is different. In tort states, you are responsible for paying off the damages of your own car and body as well as the person you hit. This means you don’t need your own personal injury insurance. If you didn’t cause the accident, the other driver has to pay for everything.