How Much Does Auto Insurance Cost for Teens?

Auto Insurance for Teens: How much does it cost?

If you have a teenager approaching the age to drive, you are likely starting to consider how much auto insurance costs for a teen driver. Most parents of teen drivers already expect their auto insurance rates will probably go up in cost. However, some are shocked when the price goes up much more than they expect.

For a parent that is starting to research the cost of auto insurance for a teenager, I will tell you the price is not going to be inexpensive. There really isn’t an economy insurance rate for first-time drivers. Yet, there are some things you can do to try and save as much money as possible.

How much can you expect to pay for teen auto insurance?

The auto insurance cost for teens can really depend on several different factors. But the average for a new 16-year old driver on their own policy, according to carinsurance.com, is around $7000 per year for full coverage. It is generally less expensive to add a teen driver to their parent’s current auto insurance policy and this results in an added $225 to $300 monthly premium. Generally, most families pay around 150-percent more for auto insurance when a teen driver is added to their parent’s coverage.

The added cost to insure a teen driver does depend on many factors that might include:

  • The type of car
  • State the person resides
  • Deductibles
  • Insurance Coverage
  • Available discounts
A parent that adds a teen driver to their existing auto insurance policy can expect to pay an added $225 to $300 monthly premium.

All licensed drivers in a household need to be on the auto insurance policy.

One of the hard lessons I learned with teen auto insurance is the company I use requires that all licensed drivers in my household need to be on our policy. This can depend on the state you live in and the auto insurance company you use. You should be aware that you might not have much of a choice but to add your teen driver to your insurance policy once they receive their driver’s license. You might not be ready for the added cost but your insurance company will not give you a choice.

I did not know about the household car insurance requirement with the company I use for coverage. When I called to inquire about the cost to add my teen driver, I was told it needed to be done at that point. This was after I was told my auto insurance monthly premium would increase by $300.

To say the least I was furious that I needed to add my teen driver no matter what. Now that I called and told the customer service representative my daughter just got her driver’s license and I wanted to know how much insurance would cost she had to be added to the policy. I was furious, to say the least, and felt I was being penalized just for asking how much auto insurance for her would cost.

I asked to speak to the supervisor and after about forty-five minutes on the phone, my daughter was added to the policy. The auto insurance manager I spoke with explained my coverage is under a household policy and my daughter needed to be added to the policy at this point if I wanted to keep my auto insurance. It was explained that because I mentioned I have a new teen driver living under my roof that now she would need to be on the auto insurance.

An insurance company requiring the addition of a teen driver probably makes sense.

Although the surprise I had with my auto insurance was not a fun one, it likely does make sense that an auto insurance company would want a teen driver on their parent’s policy if that driver is still living at home. It is a big liability for a teen to not have auto insurance when they do have a driver’s license. Ultimately, that teenager is the parent’s responsibility until they are officially an adult.

Anyone can say their teen won’t drive now that they have a license, but it does happen. A young licensed driver might get behind the wheel in an emergency or take a car without permission. Liability for the insurance company is the true reason the insurance carrier wants young drivers to be insured. It is better protection for parents as well. However, the insurance company’s focus is on their well-being.

There are some instances where a parent can opt-out of auto insurance for their teenager but this will depend on the insurance carrier. Also, it can depend on which state a person lives in. Being able to opt-out of adding a teen driver to an existing insurance policy basically adds to the existing policy that the insurance company will not be responsible whatsoever if that teen drives and gets into an accident. This is a big risk and particularly for a parent that decides not to get auto insurance for their teen driver.

Why are teen drivers so expensive to insure?

Insurance companies weigh the risks and liability of the people they have as their customers. Experienced adult drivers are evaluated for the cost of insurance based on their driving history and age. Other factors also are taken into consideration, such as the expected miles to be driven and the type of automobile that will be added to an insurance policy.

First-time licensed teenage drivers have no history on the road. This is one reason why auto insurance coverage for them is so high. Furthermore, statistically, teenage drivers also tend to have more accidents compared to other age groups. Based on driving data teenagers are a big risk for auto insurance companies and this is the simple reason they are so expensive to cover.

Although getting auto insurance for a teen driver can be expensive, there are some ways to possibly save some money.

How can you save money on auto insurance for a teen driver?

There are some ways to possibly save money on auto insurance for teens. However, many of them will likely depend on the state you live in and the insurance company. Some of the more popular discounts on auto insurance for teen drivers that might be available are:

  • Raise the coverage deductible. Taking on more financial risk in the form of a higher deductible for a parent can lower a monthly auto insurance premium for a teen. For example, someone that has a $1000 auto insurance deductible may be able to raise that to $2000 and get a lower monthly auto insurance premium cost.
  • The type of car a teen drives can make a difference in the cost of their auto insurance. A teen driver that is given a fast sports car or an expensive SUV with a bad crash rating can make a difference in the cost of auto insurance. Being reasonable with the type of car a teen drives will likely save some money.
  • Driver training courses can lower the cost of auto insurance for a teen. Some insurance carriers will provide an auto insurance discount for teen drivers that take driver courses. This might also be a mandatory requirement in some states. There is also technology today that might keep track of a teen’s driving habits that could lower the cost.
  • Student discounts are possible for teen auto insurance with some companies. Getting good grades in school and being in school shows an insurance company statistically that a young teenager is responsible. It is not always the case, but from a numbers standpoint, most kids that get decent grades are more responsible.
  • Good driver auto insurance discounts can be available for teens. Once a teenager starts to drive and is on the road for a while the cost of insurance could decrease slightly with a good driving record. Teens need to realize that it pays to have a good driving record.

There can be numerous other auto insurance discounts for teen drivers in addition to the ones listed in this article. However, the key to getting some discounts with an insurance company for a newly licensed driver is asking about them. Most insurance companies and even just businesses, in general, are not going to voluntarily offer discounts. Insurance companies are almost always in the business to make a profit. If you need and want to get discounts on auto insurance for a teenager, you will need to ask what is available.

Final Word

Auto insurance for teens can be expensive. However, driving for a lot of people is a necessary skill that needs to be learned at some point. Many young adults are increasingly delaying learning to drive and getting a driver’s license today. The disconnected technology-driven world, public transportation, and concerns for the environment are all certainly contributing factors to teens delaying their driver’s license. The stress of many young people today is also not helping.

Even though getting auto insurance for a teenage driver can be expensive, learning the needed skills is important. Delaying licensing a teenager to save money will not help in the long run. The longer a young person does not start to drive just delays the cost of insurance and helping them learn a valuable skill.

You might save money from the high cost of auto insurance by not letting your teenager get a driver’s license. But they will still be a new driver with higher insurance costs when they eventually do get licensed. Either way, a driving history needs to be established for anyone for an insurance carrier to access the risk. Generally, the longer a person drives the more experience they get and the likelihood of accidents starts to drop with someone that is not purposely reckless.

Although auto insurance for teens can be quite costly, there are ways to save some money. Taking on a higher deductible or getting a teen driver some training can help. Unfortunately, the high cost of auto insurance for a teen driver is not completely avoidable. The cost is just something that must be accepted by a lot of people at some point.

If you do put a teen driver on your auto policy, make sure to ask for what discounts are available. The insurance company is not going to most likely volunteer this information. Get all the discounts possible and this should at least help with the high cost to insure a teen driver.

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