Have you been searching for the cheapest auto insurance rates in the Tar Heel State? Whether you live in Charlotte or the Outer Banks, our team has you covered with the information you need to find the best car insurance in North Carolina.

Our research team has reviewed the top auto insurance providers nationwide based on cost, coverage, reliability, and service, and we’ve focused our findings to identify the best options for North Carolina drivers. We recommend getting quotes from several of the most reputable auto insurance companies to find the coverage that works best for you.

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In This Review:

    Cheap Car Insurance In North Carolina

    How much is car insurance in North Carolina? The table below highlights the top five cheapest car insurance providers in the state, according to our review team’s research. North Carolina drivers can often find the most affordable rates through Erie Insurance and the North Carolina Farm Bureau Insurance, with each offering average annual costs below $1,000.

    Car Insurance Providers in North Carolina

    Estimated Annual Cost

    Erie Insurance

    $927

    North Carolina Farm Bureau Insurance

    $976

    Nationwide

    $1,056

    Geico

    $1,118

    National General Insurance

    $1,151

    How Much Is Auto Insurance In North Carolina?

    According to our rate estimates, the average cost of full coverage car insurance in North Carolina is $1,278 per year. The national average is about $1,732 per year, meaning North Carolina drivers pay about 26 percent less for auto insurance on average. The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) ranked North Carolina the 46th-most expensive state to insure your vehicle in 2018.

    While North Carolina auto insurance rates tend to be among the cheapest in the country, it’s important to note that your rates will vary based on a number of factors, including:

    • Age: Young drivers pay more for car insurance due to their lack of experience on the road.
    • Gender: In most states, men pay higher premiums than women.
    • Marital status: Married drivers generally pay less for auto insurance than single drivers. They also tend to qualify for more family and bundling discounts.
    • Driving record: Speeding tickets, accidents, and DUIs all cause car insurance rates to increase.
    • Credit score: Drivers with poor credit scores usually pay significantly higher insurance rates than those with good credit scores.
    • Coverage level: Full coverage auto insurance policies are more expensive than those that only meet state minimum liability limits.

    Cheapest North Carolina Car Insurance: Speeding Tickets

    A single speeding ticket can raise the price of auto insurance in North Carolina by up to 25 percent. Drivers with speeding violations can likely find the cheapest car insurance from Auto-Owners Insurance.

    Car Insurance Providers in North Carolina

    Estimated Annual Cost

    Auto-Owners Insurance

    $1,242

    North Carolina Farm Bureau Insurance

    $1,429

    Erie Insurance

    $1,430

    Nationwide

    $1,532

    National General Insurance

    $1,662

    Cheapest North Carolina Car Insurance: Recent Accidents

    A clean driving record is important when it comes to keeping the cost of insurance premiums down. We found that a single car accident between two or more motor vehicles can raise the cost of auto insurance by a whopping 40 percent in North Carolina.

    Car Insurance Providers in North Carolina

    Estimated Annual Cost

    North Carolina Farm Bureau Insurance

    $1,554

    Erie Insurance

    $1,555

    National General Insurance

    $1,859

    Auto-Owners Insurance

    $1,888

    Nationwide

    $1,993

    Cheapest North Carolina Car Insurance: Bad Credit

    A poor credit score will lead to much higher car insurance rates in most states, including North Carolina. Our review team found that a poor credit score can increase the price of auto insurance coverage by over 20 percent.

    Car Insurance Providers in North Carolina

    Estimated Annual Cost

    National General Insurance

    $1,163

    Auto-Owners Insurance

    $1,242

    Erie Insurance

    $1,244

    Nationwide

    $1,316

    Progressive

    $1,398

    Top 5 Auto Insurance Companies In North Carolina

    Our review team took a close look at several leading providers to determine which are the best and most affordable options for auto insurance coverage in the state of North Carolina. Based on our cost, coverage, reliability, and service rating categories, we found Erie, North Carolina Farm Bureau, National General, Auto-Owners, and Nationwide to be the top five choices for North Carolina drivers.

    Best Car Insurance in North Carolina

    Overall Rating

    Cost Rating

    Coverage Rating

    1. Erie Insurance

    4.0

    4.0

    4.0

    2. North Carolina Farm Bureau Insurance

    4.0

    4.0

    4.0

    3. National General Insurance

    4.0

    4.0

    3.5

    4. Auto-Owners Insurance

    4.0

    3.5

    4.0

    5. Nationwide

    4.0

    3.5

    4.5

    *Our research team scores car insurance companies by taking nationwide factors into account. The order of insurers in this table is specific to auto insurance in North Carolina.

    #1 Erie Insurance

    Erie Insurance is our review team’s overwhelming pick for the best car insurance in North Carolina. It offers the lowest average rates for good drivers in the state and is consistently among the cheapest options for many other types of North Carolina drivers. In addition to its competitive pricing, the insurer is known for its comprehensive coverage options.

    Erie has an exceptional industry reputation, with an A+ AM Best financial strength rating and an A+ Better Business Bureau (BBB) rating. The provider also receives high scores in several J.D. Power studies. Erie placed second in the J.D. Power 2021 U.S. Auto Claims Satisfaction Study℠, with a score of 901 out of 1,000 possible points. The insurer also ranked second for customer satisfaction in the Southeast region in the J.D. Power 2021 U.S. Auto Insurance Study℠.

    Erie Insurance Pros

    Erie Insurance Cons

    Highly rated by AM Best and the BBB

    Not accredited by the BBB

    Offers quality coverage at below-average

    rates

    Ranks second in the J.D. Power customer

    satisfaction survey for the Southeast region

    For more information on this provider, we recommend reading our Erie Insurance review.

    #2 North Carolina Farm Bureau Insurance

    Founded in 1953, North Carolina Farm Bureau Insurance is a great option for North Carolina drivers searching for auto insurance. Good drivers and high-risk drivers in particular can find some of the lowest car insurance rates through the insurer. You’ll need to be a member of the Farm Bureau to get coverage through the North Carolina Farm Bureau, though membership fees are affordable.

    North Carolina Farm Bureau holds a financial strength rating of A from AM Best, highlighting the insurer’s ability to reliably pay out claims. It also has an A- rating from the BBB and has closed only 31 customer complaints via the site in the last three years.

    North Carolina Farm Bureau Insurance Pros

    North Carolina Farm Bureau Insurance Cons

    Extensive list of discounts

    Must be a member of the Farm Bureau to get

    coverage

    Nearly 70 years in the industry

    Writes more than $1 billion in premiums annually

    #3 National General Insurance

    Founded in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, National General Insurance is a local company that offers great auto insurance rates. The insurer sells auto insurance policies through a network of insurance agents throughout the state, leading to highly personalized service. National General’s parent company is the well-known insurance provider Allstate.

    National General prides itself on its affordable pricing for North Carolina drivers and its range of auto insurance discounts, which include safe driving discounts and multi-policy discounts. National General has A+ ratings from both AM Best for financial strength and the BBB.

    National General Insurance Pros

    National General Insurance Cons

    Extensive list of discounts

    Doesn’t offer rideshare insurance

    A+ ratings from the BBB and AM Best

    Great option for high-risk drivers

    #4 Auto-Owners Insurance

    Founded in 1916 in Lansing, Michigan, Auto-Owners Insurance offers car insurance to drivers in 26 states, including North Carolina. Based on our research, we found this provider to be a smart choice for many types of North Carolina drivers, young and teen drivers in particular.

    Auto-Owners has an A++ financial strength rating from AM Best as well as an A+ rating from the BBB. In the 2021 J.D. Power Auto Insurance Study, the provider received an above-average score of 849 out of 1,000 points for customer satisfaction in the Southeast region.

    Auto-Owners Insurance Pros

    Auto-Owners Insurance Cons

    Our No. 2 provider in the nation for student

    drivers

    Doesn’t offer a military discount

    Highly rated by AM Best and the BBB

    Offers usage-based insurance

    #5 Nationwide

    Although Nationwide’s average rates are slightly higher than some of its competitors’ average rates, we found the company still offers some of the most affordable rates overall in the state. We also found it to be an especially great option for older drivers and senior citizens. 

    Nationwide has a positive reputation within the insurance industry. The insurer holds an A+ financial strength rating from AM Best as well as an A+ rating from the BBB. However, it ranked slightly below the industry average for its claims process in the most recent J.D. Power Auto Claims Satisfaction Study.

    Nationwide Pros

    Nationwide Cons

    Great option for senior drivers

    Doesn’t offer new driver discounts

    Offers usage-based insurance

    Highly rated by AM Best and the BBB

    Check out our Nationwide insurance review for more information about the provider.

    North Carolina Insurance Requirements

    According to state law and the North Carolina Department of Insurance (NCDOI), all drivers must meet the following state minimum auto insurance coverage requirements:

    • Bodily injury liability: $30,000 per person/$60,000 per accident
    • Property damage liability: $25,000 per accident
    • Uninsured/underinsured motorist bodily injury: $30,000 per person/$60,000 per accident
    • Uninsured/underinsured motorist property damage: $25,000 per accident

    Beyond state minimum coverage limits, there are several other types of insurance that are worth adding to your policy to ensure you’re covered in a variety of situations. Some of these coverage options include:

    • Comprehensive coverage
    • Collision coverage
    • Medical payments
    • Gap insurance

    Is North Carolina A No-Fault State?

    North Carolina is an at-fault state. In a fault-based system like North Carolina’s, the driver who is deemed responsible for a car crash must compensate the other party (or parties) for their financial loss. The at-fault party’s insurance provider will pay out the damages.

    How To Get North Carolina Car Insurance Quotes

    Following in-depth research of auto insurance providers, our review team found Erie Insurance to be the best provider in the state of North Carolina. Drivers in the Tar Heel State can also find affordable coverage from North Carolina Farm Bureau, National General, Auto-Owners, and Nationwide.

    We recommend getting started with quotes from providers to compare car insurance options and find the best cost and coverage for your needs. You can easily get car insurance quotes online from many major providers, or you can call companies directly for quotes. You can also reach out to an auto insurance agent or broker for more personalized service.

    Compare car insurance rates
    Answer a few simple questions to save money on your policy

    Frequently Asked Questions

    • What is the minimum car insurance coverage in North Carolina?

      North Carolina drivers are required to carry bodily injury liability coverage ($30,000 per person/$60,000 per accident), property damage liability coverage ($25,000 per accident), uninsured/underinsured motorist bodily injury coverage ($30,000 per person/$60,000 per accident), and uninsured/underinsured motorist property damage coverage ($25,000 per accident).

    • Is car insurance high in North Carolina?

      According to the NAIC, North Carolina is the 46th-most expensive state for car insurance coverage. Therefore, North Carolina is one of the cheapest states in the nation to purchase car insurance.

    • How much is car insurance in North Carolina monthly?

      The average cost of car insurance in North Carolina is $1,278 per year, or about $107 per month, according to our rate estimates. Compared to the national average of $1,732, North Carolina drivers pay about 26 percent less for auto insurance.

    • Does insurance follow the car or driver in North Carolina?

      In the state of North Carolina, car insurance policies follow the car rather than the driver.

    How We Rate Insurers

    Our review process aims to deliver consistent and unbiased assessments of car insurance providers. While there are multiple qualities that make a car insurance company successful, our review team focuses on those we believe are the most important for consumers:

    • Cost: Cost can be difficult to compare between insurers because so many factors impact annual premiums. The cheapest insurer for one driver may not be the cheapest for another. To determine our cost score, we look at insurance rate estimates generated by Quadrant Information Services, discount opportunities, and consumer reports.
    • Coverage: To determine our coverage score, we look at the number of coverage options available as well as coverage limits and deductible options. Our ratings also take into account additional services and benefits like roadside assistance.
    • Reliability: It’s important that an auto insurer is able to meet its claims obligations. Companies with a strong financial strength rating from AM Best score best in this category. Established insurers with a long history of reliable service also receive positive marks.
    • Service: We comb through customer reviews on sites like the BBB to learn about customer experiences. Insurers with a low volume of complaints score well in this area. We also consider the claims process, giving higher ratings to car insurance providers that offer easy-to-use claims apps.

    *Data accurate at time of publication