The best car insurance in Seattle, WA

Gianetta Palmer

By

Gianetta Palmer

Gianetta Palmer

Freelance contributor

Gianetta Palmer is a freelance writer who lives in the Georgia mountains. Her writing on health and car insurance, has appeared on numerous sites.

Published November 10, 2021

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Seattle drivers pay an average of $2,085 per year for full coverage car insurance, well over the Washington state average of $1,651. That’s because Seattle is the eighteenth-largest city in the U.S., and more people means more cars and more chances for accidents and claims.

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That makes it all the more important for Seattle drivers to find affordable coverage — and the easiest way to save money on car insurance is by comparing quotes. Policygenius makes it easy to see options from top insurance companies so you can choose the coverage that’s best for you and your wallet. 

Key Takeaways

  • USAA Insurance has the lowest average rates in Seattle at $1,166 per year for full coverage

  • The ZIP code with the cheapest rates in Seattle is 98101, with average yearly rates of $1,982

  • The minimum liability car insurance requirements in Washington are $25,000 per person/$50,000 per accident in bodily injury liability coverage and $10,000 in property damage liability coverage

Cheapest car insurance companies in Seattle, WA

Your age, location, and driving record all impact your rates, but car insurance companies all use slightly different methods for calculating costs. That’s why rates can vary so much from company to company — and why it’s so important to comparison shop.

Company

Average cost

JD Power Rating

USAA

$1,166

890

State Farm

$1,439

881

PEMCO Insurance

$1,448

--

GEICO

$1,462

871

Nationwide

$1,498

876

Cheapest car insurance rates by ZIP code in Seattle, WA

Your ZIP code is one of the most significant factors that insurance companies use to calculate your car insurance rates. Insurers will look at the number of accidents, stolen vehicles, and acts of vandalism in your specific neighborhood.

ZIP code

Average cost

98101

$1,982

98102

$2,008

98103

$2,037

98104

$2,113

98105

$2,067

98106

$2,169

98107

$1,982

98108

$2,249

Choosing the right car insurance company in Seattle, WA

While car insurance is required, it’s important to make sure you’re not just settling on the first option. You’ll want to compare cost, coverage options, even customer service and claims satisfaction ratings to make sure you’re choosing the right company.  

Policygenius can help you see quotes from top car insurance providers, so you can feel confident you’re choosing the right coverage (and getting the best deal).

Car insurance rates for drivers with driving violations in Seattle, WA

Your driving history is one of the biggest factors that insurance companies use to set your insurance rates. If you’ve been caught speeding or running red lights, your rates will be higher as a result, sometimes much higher.

Violation

USAA

State Farm

PEMCO Insurance

GEICO

Nationwide

At-fault Accident

$1,689

$1,757

$1,831

$2,417

$2,636

DUI

$2,561

$1,613

$2,129

$2,394

$3,341

Driving with a suspended license

$2,412

$1,613

$1,988

$2,685

$3,341

Driving with an open container

$1,807

$1,613

$1,988

$2,394

$2,062

Driving with expired registration

$1,438

$1,613

$1,446

$1,980

$2,062

Driving without Lights

$1,220

$1,613

$1,691

$1,980

$3,341

Failure to show documents

$1,220

$1,613

$1,691

$1,980

$2,062

Failure to stop at a red light

$1,438

$1,613

$1,691

$1,980

$2,062

Cheapest car insurance for drivers with bad credit in Seattle, WA

Until 2021, Washington allowed companies to use your credit score to establish insurance rates. However, effective June 20, 2021, the state issued an emergency rule to ban the use of credit scores to set rates for home, auto, and renters insurance policies. If you haven’t renewed or reshopped for insurance since the new guidelines, your insurance rates may not yet reflect this change.

In the meantime, the chart below shows the cheapest rates for drivers with bad credit in Seattle.

Company

Rates for drivers with bad credit

USAA

$1,220

State Farm

$1,467

Progressive

$1,481

GEICO

$1,632

Travelers

$1,903

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Buying car insurance in Seattle, WA

Washington state law mandates drivers must carry one of the following types of auto insurance or financial responsibility:

  • Bodily Injury Liability Coverage Per Person: $25,000

  • Bodily Injury Liability Coverage Per Accident: $50,000 

  • Property Damage Liability Coverage: $10,000

  • Apply for a certificate of deposit to guarantee financial responsibility for an accident with the state’s Department of Licensing.

  • Have a liability bond of at least $60,000.

Washington is an at-fault state when it comes to car accidents. That means that the insurance company of the at-fault driver covers the other party’s repair bills and medical costs after an accident. The state also follows a modified comparative negligence rule, which means if more than one driver is responsible for an accident, their claims will be reduced accordingly.

How to get cheap car insurance in Seattle, WA

Car insurance is expensive in Seattle, but almost every insurance company offers discounts that can help you save on coverage. Here are some of the most common:

  • Bundling discount: For combining multiple policies, like home and auto insurance, with the same company.

  • Military discount: A discount for active-duty service members and their families

  • Safe driver discount: For drivers who are accident free

  • Good student discount: For full time students who maintain above a certain GPA in school

Other discounts are available and vary by company. Ask your provider which ones apply to you.

Frequently asked questions

I’m engaged but not getting married for a while, should I add my fiancé to my policy?

If you and your fiancé live together, you should add them to your policy, even if you’re not married. Many insurance companies require that every licensed driver in a household be listed on your policy.

I heard insurance rates go down at age 25 but I just turned 26, and my rates didn’t go down, why not?

If you drive an expensive car or have multiple moving violations, your insurer considers you riskier to insure and doesn’t offer the usual price drop that many drivers see when they age into a new category. Your rates may also be high because of where you live.

I got a parking ticket, will my insurance go up?

Parking tickets shouldn’t affect your car insurance rates, but moving violations, like a speeding ticket, probably will, so you should drive carefully and follow the rules of the road when you’re behind the wheel.

Methodology

Policygenius has analyzed car insurance rates provided by Quadrant Information Services for every ZIP code in all 50 states plus Washington, D.C. For full coverage policies, the following coverage limits were used:

  • Bodily injury liability: 50/100

  • Property damage liability: $50,000

  • Uninsured/underinsured motorist: 50/100

  • Comprehensive: $500 deductible

  • Collision: $500 deductible

In some cases, additional coverages were added where required by state or insurer.

Rates for overall average rate, rates by ZIP code, and cheapest companies determined using averages for single drivers ages 30, 35, and 45. Our sample vehicle was a 2017 Toyota Camry LE driven 10,000 miles/year.

Rates for driving violations and “Poor” credit determined using average rates for a single male 30-year-old driver with a credit score under 578.

Some carriers may be represented by affiliates or subsidiaries. Rates provided are a sample of costs. Your actual quotes may differ.