The best car insurance in Seattle, WA

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Gianetta PalmerGianetta PalmerFreelance contributorGianetta Palmer is a freelance writer who lives in the Georgia mountains. Her writing on health and car insurance, has appeared on numerous sites.&Rachael BrennanRachael BrennanSenior Editor & Licensed Auto Insurance ExpertRachael Brennan is a senior editor and a licensed auto insurance expert at Policygenius. Her work has also been featured in MoneyGeek, Clearsurance, Adweek, Boston Globe, The Ladders, and AutoInsurance.com.
Expert reviewedExpert reviewedThis article has been reviewed by a licensed Policygenius expert to ensure that sources, statistics, and claims meet our standard for accurate and unbiased advice.Learn more about oureditorial review process.

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Maria FilindrasMaria FilindrasFinancial AdvisorMaria Filindras is a financial advisor, a licensed Life & Health insurance agent in California, and a member of the Financial Review Council at Policygenius.

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Seattle drivers pay an average of $2,182 per year for full coverage car insurance, well over the Washington state average of $1,730. 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

  • PEMCO Insurance has the lowest average rates in Seattle at $1,153 per year for full coverage.

  • The ZIP code with the cheapest rates in Seattle is 98101, with average yearly rates of $2,067.

  • 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

PEMCO Insurance

$1,153

--

USAA

$1,166

890

State Farm

$1,363

882

GEICO

$1,477

874

Nationwide

$1,737

868

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

$2,067

98107

$2,072

98121

$2,080

98119

$2,085

98102

$2,097

98117

$2,106

98112

$2,114

98109

$2,114

98199

$2,119

98103

$2,132

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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

PEMCO Insurance

USAA

State Farm

GEICO

Nationwide

At-fault accident

$1,450

$1,689

$1,664

$2,417

$3,204

DUI

$1,680

$2,561

$1,528

$2,394

$4,084

Suspended license

$1,572

$2,412

$1,528

$2,685

$4,084

Open container

$1,572

$1,807

$1,528

$2,394

$2,782

Expired registration

$1,340

$1,438

$1,528

$1,980

$2,782

Driving without lights

$1,340

$1,220

$1,528

$1,980

$4,084

Running a red light

$1,340

$1,438

$1,528

$1,980

$2,782

Following too closely

$1,572

$1,438

$1,528

$1,980

$2,782

Hit and run

$1,680

$2,659

$1,528

$2,394

$4,084

Not-at-fault accident

$1,149

$1,220

$1,391

$1,335

$1,805

Passing a school bus

$1,572

$1,807

$1,528

$1,980

$2,782

Reckless driving

$1,572

$1,608

$1,528

$2,394

$4,084

Speeding

$1,340

$1,438

$1,528

$2,394

$2,782

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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.

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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

What car insurance do I need in Washington state?

The minimum coverage requirements in Washington State are 25/50/10. This breaks down into bodily injury liability coverage of $25,000 per person and $50,000 per accident with property damage liability coverage of $10,000.

Is full coverage car insurance required in Washington?

Washington state law requires drivers to have a minimum of 25/50/10 in liability coverage. Full coverage isn't required by law, but drivers who have a lease or a car loan may be required to have comprehensive and collision insurance as part of the terms of their financial agreement.

Is Washington an at-fault state or a no-fault state?

Washington is an at-fault state, which means that the driver who is deemed at-fault for an accident is responsible for all of the bodily injury and property damage expenses associated with the accident. Drivers who don't have enough liability insurance to cover those expenses will be expected to pay them out of pocket.

How much is car insurance per month in Washington?

Drivers in Washington pay an average of $1,730 per year for car insurance, which breaks down to $144 per month.

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.

Authors

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

Rachael Brennan is a senior editor and a licensed auto insurance expert at Policygenius. Her work has also been featured in MoneyGeek, Clearsurance, Adweek, Boston Globe, The Ladders, and AutoInsurance.com.

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