New York is an intensely varied state, from the massive metropolis of Manhattan to the sleepy rural communities in the north, and car insurance reflects this. New York has the fourth largest population of licensed drivers, coming in just behind Florida; considering its relative size, this means there’s a much higher concentration of drivers on the road at any time in New York than in other states. Despite this high number of drivers, New York actually has very reasonable car insurance rates, ranking 21 out of 50 states.

What factors influence New York car insurance rates?

There are several factors that play a role in determining the cost of car insurance. Rates vary from person to person within any given area, so the individual cost of a policy may be different even between neighbors. There is a correlation between your address an your insurance policy, however, and your rates are dependent on certain geographic factors.

The first major influence to car insurance premiums is the number of drivers on the road and the condition of driving in general in a given community. New York has a huge number of drivers, but it also has an excellent public transportation system in the cities. This means that many people are able to commute to work each day without needing to use the streets and highways, reducing the likelihood of a motor vehicle collision. Cities in New York are also somewhat more compact than those on the west coast, meaning that commutes are shorter and people spend less time driving than they would in a state like California.

Another enormous factor in determining car insurance rates is the number of uninsured drivers in an area. The more drivers who do not carry insurance, the more other companies must pay to compensate for the cost of claims. New York is fortunate in this respect, with only five percent of its drivers uninsured. This is likely a major reason for the relatively low cost in this state.

Weather also plays a role in car insurance premiums. Areas with extreme weather are more likely to create automobile damage than those with a more temperate climate. In the case of New York, ice and snow play a big factor, especially in the more rural areas where open stretches of road may harbor black ice or other hazards. There is also some risk of wind and hail damage as well as flooding in certain areas along the coast.

One factor that varies from one neighborhood to the next is crime, specifically vandalism and auto theft. Neighborhoods with a low property crime rate will have lower premiums than those where vandalism and break-ins are more common. New York ranks as the 10th highest state for auto theft, but no city in New York ranks in the top 10 cities for theft. Generally, auto thefts are most common in cities near country borders; in New York’s case, the number of thefts is probably correlated to the population.

How much is car insurance in New York?

The average car insurance premium in New York is $1627 per year, averaging to $135 paid each month in premiums. Of course, these rates vary depending on the coverage selected and the driving history of the policyholder. Depending upon what specific policy you choose, your rates may be higher or lower than the average. Statistically, car insurance rates have not increased dramatically in New York over the past few years.

What are the car insurance requirements in New York?

All states have minimum car insurance requirements for liability, but each state sets its own limits. If you have recently moved to New York, you may need to increase your car insurance in order to meet the state requirements, depending on what state you came from.

At a minimum, you must have a car insurance policy in-force with at least $25,000/$50,000 bodily injury liability and $10,000 for property damage. In the event that you are involved in an auto accident that’s your fault, your insurance company will pay up to your limit for damage or injuries that you cause. Any amount you are responsible for over this will be charged to you individually, so you may wish to increase your limits of liability in order to avoid any potential lawsuits.

You are also required to carry your own personal injury protection coverage of at least $50,000. This is because New York is considered a no-fault state in regard to injuries, meaning that each person’s own car insurance is predominately responsible to pay for injuries sustained in an accident regardless of who caused the collision.

If you wish, you can also purchase collision and comprehensive insurance, as well as rental reimbursement coverage, roadside assistance or any other supplementary coverage your insurance company provides. In order to keep costs down, you can choose to carry coverage with a high deductible. This means you will need to pay more for your portion of repairs after an accident, but the money you save on premiums may be worth it.

Generally, drivers with a safe driving history free of any accidents will get the most competitive rates. You can comparison shop online to find the best company to suit your needs no matter where you live.