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CA Department of Insurance

Californians searching for lower auto insurance rates have more options

News: 2017 Press Release

For Release: February 9, 2017
Media Calls Only: 916-492-3566
Californians searching for lower auto insurance rates have more options
Department’s online premium comparison tool updated with new features
SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Finding the lowest auto insurance rates requires some research and the Department of Insurance offers an online comparison tool that gives drivers more options to find the most affordable rates.

"When shopping for insurance it is important for consumers to do their homework and shop around," said Commissioner Jones. "The auto insurance comparison tool provides an apples-to-apples comparison allowing consumers to find companies offering the lowest rate for their needs."

The easy-to-use online tool is designed to take some of the guesswork out of shopping for insurance by allowing consumers to quickly and easily make comparisons of rates from national and local insurance companies.

Thousands of consumers have used the department's tool since its overhaul last year to compare rates and find the best company for their needs. Now with updated premium estimates from 54 insurers, the auto insurance comparison tool continues to save consumers time and money.

The auto rate comparison tool helps consumers see a range in prices, based on factors similar to their situation. Consumers enter the location, coverage type, years licensed, driving record, annual mileage, and vehicle type that best describes them. Rates are affected by all of these factors, including the driver's record, at-fault accidents, traffic violations, and their experience behind the wheel.

Using this tool, a married couple in Los Angeles (Burbank) shopping for standard insurance might find their average annual premium options range from $2,821 to $9,308—a price span of $6,437. A single female in San Francisco (Mission District) shopping for standard insurance might find her average premium options range from $2,035 to $8,095 annually, with an average of $5,062.

Auto insurance protects drivers and their vehicles in the event of an accident, but not all insurance is the same. Premiums can vary greatly among insurers. Drivers should compare prices for various insurers along with the coverage features, limits, exclusions, and available credits or discounts, which are all included in the tool. The tool also has a complaint page where consumers may view complaints about each insurer over the last three years.

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Media Notes:
  • Automobile Insurance Comparison Tool 
  • Auto rate comparison infographic and examples from across the state
  • This tool does not provide premium quotes. The premiums shown are based on responses by insurance companies to the CDI Automobile Premium Survey. Each company's premium is followed by a toll-free number for consumers to contact an insurance agent, ask questions about available discounts or credits and receive an actual premium quote that specifically addresses personal auto insurance needs. 
  • Each company has provided discounts, footnotes and complaints sections, which display the company's available discounts, credits, and explanations that may impact auto insurance premiums. Also a link to the specific company's performance based on the consumer complaint study results. 
  • The California Department of Insurance does not endorse or recommend any particular insurer.  


The California Department of Insurance, established in 1868, is the largest consumer protection agency in California. Insurers collect $289 billion in premiums annually in California. Since 2011 the California Department of Insurance received more than 1,000,000 calls from consumers and helped recover over $394 million in claims and premiums. Please visit the Department of Insurance web site at www.insurance.ca.gov. Non-media inquiries should be directed to the Consumer Hotline at 800.927.HELP or 213.897.8921. Telecommunications Devices for the Deaf (TDD), please dial 800.482.4833.

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