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Car insurance after moving

How moving to a different home changes car insurance rates.

Updated

Fact checked

Packing up your life and hauling it somewhere new usually means big changes — even if it’s just across town. And regardless of if you’re moving state-to-state or just switching neighborhoods, updating your car insurance can result in a noticeable difference in your rates.

Why does car insurance change after moving?

Two of the main factors that impact rates are your new ZIP code and state regulations. If you’re moving to a neighborhood associated with more or less risk, your rates will go up or down accordingly. Likewise, insurance could be more or less expensive depending on how much coverage your state requires you to buy.

How much does moving affect car insurance rates?

The two factors mentioned above, your ZIP and state, are going to both impact how much you pay in different ways.

Your neighborhood

Even within the same city, rates can dramatically change based on the amount of risk associated with your neighborhood. This is in large part due to the number and severity of theft and accident claims filed in each particular area.

For example, the average cost of car insurance in Illinois as a whole is $803 per year, but that number rises to $1,098 in Chicago — a city of over 2.7 million people.

Your state

And moving states can mean a vastly different policy. Different states have different coverage requirements.

For example, some states require personal injury protection or uninsured motorist coverage, whereas others don’t. The best way to make sure you’re not missing a thing is to check with your insurance company when you move to make sure you’re abiding by the laws in your new area.

Are you moving to a no-fault state? Insurance companies in no-fault states will automatically compensate you in the event of an accident, regardless of who was at fault. Other states go by tort liability, which means your provider can refuse to offer full coverage if the accident was partly your fault.

Compare car insurance rates after moving

Name Product Roadside assistance New car protection Accident forgiveness Safe driver discount Available states
Progressive
Optional
30%
All 50 states
Discover coverage that’s broader than competitors, valuable discounts up to 30% off and perks like shrinking deductibles that reward no claims.
Clearcover
Optional
Yes
AZ, CA, IL, LA, OH, TX, UT and WI
Get instant online support and score a low rate thanks to online data that sets premiums automatically.
The AARP Auto Insurance Program from The Hartford
Optional
Yes
All 50 states & DC
Drivers over age 50 can enjoy low rates and perks designed for mature drivers, plus freebies and AARP member perks like free replacement cost coverage.
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Top 4 ways to get cheap car insurance after moving

Moving is a great time to reevaluate your car insurance policy and find new ways to save.

  1. Shop around. When getting new insurance quotes, make sure you’re getting accurate coverage across the board. Also consider any extra perks you’re getting, like accident forgiveness and roadside assistance.
  2. Evaluate your coverage. Moving to a more congested area might mean you need to add collision coverage, while moving out to the country might mean swapping collision for comprehensive coverage. Drop any coverage you no longer need for extra savings.
  3. Opt for pay-as-you-go if you’re commuting less. Let your insurer know if you’ll be driving more or fewer annual miles. A shorter commute could mean insurance savings, especially if you get a pay-as-you-go policy.
  4. Add any new members of the household. If you’re moving in with your partner, consider couples insurance to save. Likewise, adding any new roommates who will be using your car to your policy could end up saving you money if they’re an exceptionally good driver.

How do I update my car insurance after moving?

Call your insurance company when you relocate to make sure your policy is up to date. Have the following details on hand, especially if you’re moving states:

  • Your new address, including ZIP code
  • Expected annual mileage, especially if the length of your daily commute changed
  • Driving and insurance history
  • Desired amount of coverage
  • Vehicle information, including date of purchase and if it’s owned or financed
  • Personal information of people covered on the policy

What should I watch out for with car insurance after moving?

As you’re getting geared up to make your move and while you’re on your way, you’re already going to have a lot on your mind. But taking the time to update your coverage will help ensure you get the best rates for protection in case of a crash.

  • Coverage requirements differ by state. Check with your provider to make sure you’re abiding by the laws of your new location.
  • Rates could go up or down. Be prepared for rates to fluctuate based on the risk analysis of your new neighborhood.
  • Insurance is required for vehicle registration. If you’re switching states, don’t procrastinate on updating your policy because you’ll need to show proof of insurance to register your vehicle. You typically have a few weeks to change your vehicle registration and license plates if you’re moving states.
  • Cancel your old policy to protect your credit. If you switch insurers, don’t just stop paying the premiums. Be sure to cancel the policy completely after securing new coverage.
  • You may be eligible for a refund or have to pay a fee. Depending on the details of your old policy, you may be charged for canceling early. Likewise, if it’s already paid in full, you may be paid a prorated refund.

Bottom line

Don’t let coverage slip through the cracks between cardboard boxes and packaging tape. If you’re gearing up to relocate, it’s important to compare car insurance rates to make sure you’re getting the best deal.

Common questions about car insurance after moving

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