The best Houston car insurance companies 2021

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In 2019, the most recent year with available data, there were over 113,500 traffic accidents in Harris County, home to Houston, Texas. 395 of those accidents were fatal. Drivers in Houston likely want to protect themselves from the financial implications of causing an accident, and one of the best ways to do that is to purchase auto insurance.

To find the best car insurance, Houston drivers may want to consider several factors, such as average premiums, customer service scores, discounts and available coverages. Bankrate has reviewed the largest carriers in the area to determine the best car insurance companies in Houston, TX.

Best car insurance companies in Houston

To find the best car insurance companies in Houston, Bankrate’s editorial team looked at the biggest providers and carefully evaluated each one based on 2021 average rates obtained from Quadrant Information Services, third party ratings, coverage options, discounts and customer service reviews. For comparison, the average minimum coverage premium in the Houston area is $691 per year and the average full coverage premium is $2,416 per year.

Here are the car insurance companies we recommend for Houston drivers.

Insurance company J.D. Power score
(Texas)
Average annual premium for minimum coverage Average annual premium for full coverage
Allstate 832 / 1,000 $700 $2,033
Geico 846 / 1,000 $503 $1,529
MetLife Not rated $872 $2,679
State Farm 844 / 1,000 $665 $1,651
USAA* 878 / 1,000 $510 $1,556

*USAA is not eligible for official ranking with J.D. Power due to eligibility restrictions

USAA

USAA may be a good choice for policyholders who are active-duty military members or veterans. The company exclusively sells insurance to military members and their eligible families, but if you meet the criteria, USAA may be able to provide you with auto insurance at well below the Houston area’s average premiums.

Although it does not qualify for official ranking, USAA consistently receives high scores from J.D. Power for both overall customer satisfaction and claims satisfaction. The company’s personal auto insurance product also received a below-industry-average complaint index score from the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC). A score of 1.00 represents an industry-standard level of complaints; USAA’s personal auto insurance product receives a score of 0.98.

Geico

In Houston, and around the country, Geico is known for selling affordable car insurance policies. The average Houston driver pays $1,529 for full coverage insurance and $465 $503 for minimum coverage insurance per year with Geico. If price is your primary concern, you may want to get a quote from Geico.

Geico does not offer a wide selection of coverage options. Although standard coverage options like liability, comprehensive and collision are available, there are few options for endorsements. However, the company does have a wide variety of discount opportunities that can help drivers save even more money on their premiums.

MetLife

MetLife sells more than just life insurance; the company also offers auto, home, umbrella, health, vision and dental insurance coverages. If you work for a major employer in Houston, you may be eligible for even lower rates with MetLife through its employer partnerships.

MetLife offers standard auto insurance coverages along with several optional features to allow you to tailor your policy to your needs. You can add roadside assistance, new car replacement coverage or special parts replacement. MetLife’s personal auto product also received a 0.00 complaint index score from the NAIC, indicating few to no customer complaints.

State Farm

State Farm is one of the largest car insurance providers in Texas and its premiums are lower than the area’s average cost of insurance. The company also offers a variety of discounts and good online tools. Customers looking for a digital experience may want to consider getting a quote from State Farm.

State Farm also offers two safe driver discount programs, Drive Safe & Save for adults and Steer Clear for drivers under 25. If you practice safe on-road behaviors, State Farm could reward you with a discounted premium. Additionally, State Farm received an above-industry-average score from J.D. Power for claims service. This indicates that customers are generally pleased with the claims process with State Farm.

Allstate

Allstate received the lowest J.D. Power score of the companies that we chose as the best, the company could still be a good fit for your needs. The company offers numerous coverage endorsements to help you to customize your policy, including sound system equipment coverage and coverage options for classic cars.

In addition, Allstate offers a long list of discounts for drivers who are looking to lower their rates. Allstate customers may be able to save money on their insurance by insuring a new vehicle, being a smart student, signing a policy before their old one ends, having certain safety features in their car, paying their premiums on time or signing up for the DriveWise program.

Cheapest car insurance in Houston

Auto insurance is relatively expensive in Houston. Full coverage costs $2,416 per year, whereas the average annual full coverage premium in Texas is $1,823 and the national average annual full coverage premium is $1,674. Minimum coverage costs $691 per year in Houston, $524 per year in Texas and $565 per year nationally.

Cost is often a concern when shopping for auto insurance. The cheapest auto insurance providers on average are:

Insurance company Average annual premium for minimum coverage Average annual premium for full coverage
Geico $503 $1,529
USAA $510 $1,556
White Mountains $527 $1,676
AMTrust Financial $527 $1,979
Nationwide $584 $1,540

The table above compares the cheapest car insurance rates from the most popular carriers based on market share. This information is beneficial to keep in mind when researching car insurance carriers. However, cost is not the only factor that you might want to consider when choosing your car insurance company. You may want to think about a company’s customer service ratings, available discounts, digital tools and coverage offerings as well.

Houston insurance requirements

Drivers in Houston are legally required to carry a minimum amount of car insurance coverage, as determined by state law. In Texas, every driver must carry at least 30/60/25 coverage, which includes:

  • $30,000 in bodily injury liability coverage per person
  • $60,000 in bodily injury liability coverage per accident
  • $25,000 in property damage liability coverage

Purchasing minimum coverage insurance could mean you will pay a lower rate. However, insurance experts agree that most drivers will benefit from buying higher liability limits or even full coverage insurance.

The costs in the aftermath of car accidents can be high and there is no guarantee that Houston’s minimum insurance coverage requirement will be enough to cover the full cost of an at-fault crash. Any damages above your policy’s limit will come directly out of your pocket.

Additionally, most lenders and dealerships require you to carry full coverage insurance if your vehicle is financed or leased. In that case, you would not have the option to decrease your coverage until the car was paid off in full.

Car insurance discounts in Houston

Most Houston car insurance companies offer discounts to help drivers save money on their premiums. You might even qualify for multiple discounts. Here are some of the different discounts offered in Houston and how drivers may qualify for them:

  • Policy bundling: Houston drivers who bundle an auto and home insurance policy from the same company can often save money on their premiums. Most insurance companies that offer auto and property insurance offer this discount.
  • Defensive driver discounts: If you take an approved defensive driver course, you might be able to save money on your car insurance. You may want to contact your insurance company to ask if they offer this discount and to check which organizations offer a qualifying driving training course.
  • Good student discounts: Many insurance companies offer a discount for students who get good grades or maintain a certain GPA. The requirements are different for every insurance company, so check to see if you or your student qualifies.
  • Car safety feature discounts: Another popular car insurance discount in Houston is the car safety feature discount. If your vehicle has certain features, like anti-lock brakes, airbags, daytime running lights or an anti-theft system, you may qualify for a discount.

Talking to your agent is one of the best ways to check to see if there are additional savings opportunities that you might qualify for. You can also see what discounts are offered on most auto insurance companies’ websites.

Frequently asked questions

What is the best car insurance company?

Car insurance is highly personalized, so the best car insurance company is different for every driver. It depends on the amount of coverage you need, the type of coverage you want, your budget and what you value in a car insurance company. Your age, gender, ZIP code and driving history also factor into your rates and eligibility. When you are shopping for car insurance in Houston, it is a good idea to compare providers and get sample quotes to see which company can offer you the lowest rate.

What factors can affect the cost of my car insurance in Houston?

There are many different factors that can raise or lower your car insurance rates if you live in the city of Houston. Everything from the make and model of your car to the type of coverage and your driving record can affect your rates, which is why it is so important to get car insurance quotes. Even your ZIP code can affect how much your car insurance policy will cost you, as can your marital status and what you use your car for.

What will happen if I drive uninsured in the city of Houston?

If you are an uninsured driver in Houston, you may be looking at a ticket and a hefty fine. In addition to fines, you could also have your car impounded or have your license suspended. If you cause an accident without car insurance, you will be responsible for the damages out of pocket.

Methodology

Bankrate utilizes Quadrant Information Services to analyze 2021 rates for all ZIP codes and carriers in all 50 states and Washington, D.C. Quoted rates are based on a 40-year-old male and female driver with a clean driving record, good credit and the following full coverage limits:

  • $100,000 bodily injury liability per person
  • $300,000 bodily injury liability per accident
  • $50,000 property damage liability per accident
  • $100,000 uninsured motorist bodily injury per person
  • $300,000 uninsured motorist bodily injury per accident
  • $500 collision deductible
  • $500 comprehensive deductible

To determine minimum coverage limits, Bankrate used minimum coverages that meet each state’s requirements. Our base profile drivers own a 2019 Toyota Camry, commute five days a week and drive 12,000 miles annually.

These are sample rates and should only be used for comparative purposes.