Report: Michigan still has highest car insurance rates in US in 2019

Detroit has highest rates for any city

The Zebra's 2019 State of Auto Insurance

DETROIT – It's no secret that Michigan auto insurance rates are high, but a new report finds rates in the state outpace any other.

The Zebra, a leading car insurance search engine, released their 2019 State of Auto Insurance Report, which finds that car insurance rates have increased for four out of five American drivers in the last five years.

In fact, rates across the U.S. are higher than they've ever been — up 23% since 2011 with an average annual cost of $1,470.

The report states Michigan has the highest insurance rates and Detroit has the highest for any city.

The Zebra's annual report examines more than 61 million auto insurance rates across every U.S. zip code to provide insight into the many factors insurance companies use to price insurance — and how that pricing is unique to every individual.

"Some people are paying $500 a year while others are paying $5,000. Why? It could be weather in your state, your driving habits, or even your gender, marital status, or credit score," says Alyssa Connolly, Director of Market Insights, The Zebra. "Car insurance is a major expense for most Americans, and drivers want to know how much their rates are changing  — especially as new technology comes into play."

Key findings reveal that the state of auto insurance in 2019 is:

Expensive — Car insurance rates are higher than ever, with some parts of the country paying upwards of $5,000 per year.

  • Most expensive states:
    • Michigan: $2,693
    • Louisiana: $2,339
    • Rhode Island: $2,110
  • Most expensive cities:
    • Detroit, MI: $5,464
    • New Orleans, LA: $3,686
    • Hialeah, FL: $2,997

Erratic — Rates vary dramatically, with massive increases (and some decreases) over time, and vast disparity even within a single state.

  • In Colorado, car insurance costs are up 80% since 2011, but they're down 20% in Oklahoma in the same time frame.
  • Rate changes from year to year have been as high as 45% in some states.
  • Even within a state, rates can vary from one zip code to another by as much as 265%.

Evolving — In 2019, technology is changing both how people drive and how car insurance companies operate.

  • Insurance companies are using telematics (apps or plug-in devices to monitor a driver's behavior), which has the potential to lower costs for safe drivers and provide extensive data about driving trends.
  • Distracted drivers are starting to pay the price for their dangerous behaviors with an average insurance rate penalty of 20%.
  • Although new technology is making cars safer, it's also making them more expensive to repair or replace, so drivers likely won't see any car insurance savings for these new car features.
  • Car insurance companies are already leveraging insights from consumers' online behavior for marketing and other purposes, and there is potential this data could inform how they price rates in the future.

Check out the full report below: 

About the Author:

Ken Haddad is the digital content and audience manager for WDIV / He also authors the Morning Report Newsletter and various other newsletters. He's been with WDIV since 2013. He enjoys suffering through Lions games on Sundays in the fall.