Best car insurance in New Jersey in 2021

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Based on Bankrate’s extensive research, Geico and NJM offer some of the best car insurance in New Jersey. Our analysis also revealed that State Farm, Progressive and Allstate offer solid coverage at competitive prices.

The average cost of full coverage car insurance in New Jersey is $1,757 per year, according to Bankrate’s 2021 study of average quoted premiums. When shopping for car insurance, New Jersey drivers may want to consider more than just price. Finding the best auto insurance in New Jersey requires understanding your needs, knowing how to analyze a car insurance company and knowing what coverage types your state requires you to purchase. Bankrate’s research might make this process easier for you.

Best car insurance companies in New Jersey

Bankrate’s insurance editorial team conducted research on the largest car insurance companies by market share in the Garden State. Geico, NJM, State Farm, Progressive and Allstate are among the best auto insurance companies in New Jersey, based on our investigation.

We first obtained current quoted premium information from Quadrant Information Services. After analyzing the average premium of each company, we reviewed available coverage, discounts, financial strength and customer satisfaction scores. Some of the third-party ratings consulted include J.D. Power, AM Best and Standard & Poor’s. We combined this information into a Bankrate Score for each company. The Scores are out of 5.0, and the more highly a company is ranked, the more highly it scored in each category.

You might want to get a quote from the following companies if you are searching for the best auto insurance in New Jersey:

Car insurance company Bankrate Score Average annual full coverage premium J.D. Power customer satisfaction score (Mid-Atlantic region)
State Farm 4.7 $1,244 851/1,000
Geico 4.7 $1,316 835/1,000
NJM 4.6 $1,271 867/1,000
Progressive 4.4 $1,469 834/1,000
Allstate 4.0 $1,686 830/1,000

State Farm

If budget is your primary concern, State Farm might be a good choice. The company has the lowest full coverage premium on our list, with an average full coverage rate over $500 cheaper than New Jersey’s average. State Farm sells its coverage through a network of local agents, and there are plenty of agencies in New Jersey. Although State Farm’s J.D. Power ranking for customer satisfaction is above average, the company does have a higher-than-average overall complaint index score from the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC). This means that the NAIC receives more complaints than average regarding State Farm.

Learn more: State Farm Insurance review

Geico

Geico’s average full coverage rate is well below New Jersey’s average. The company also offers one of the longest lists of discounts in the industry, with savings for federal employees, military members, safe drivers and good students. In the Service category, Geico also takes the top spot in the 2021 J.D. Power U.S. Insurance Digital Experience Study. The company’s digital app is robust, allowing you to request roadside service, view ID cards, make payments, file claims and request policy changes. However, Geico does not offer as many optional coverage types as its competitors, making policy personalization difficult.

Learn more: Geico Insurance review

NJM Insurance

NJM, which stands for New Jersey Manufacturers, sells auto insurance coverage in Connecticut, Maryland, New Jersey, Ohio and Pennsylvania. In addition to having the second-lowest average full coverage premium on our list, the company also earns the top spot in the 2021 J.D. Power U.S. Auto Insurance Study in the mid-Atlantic region, meaning many of NJM’s customers are satisfied with the company’s customer service. As a smaller company, NJM’s digital tools are not quite as robust as the tools provided by other companies, so it may not be the best choice for you if you prefer to handle your insurance online or via a mobile app.

Learn more: NJM Insurance review

Progressive

If you are looking for coverage you can personalize to a high degree, Progressive may be a good place to start. The company offers a variety of optional coverage types, including loan or lease payoff, custom parts and equipment, rideshare coverage and roadside assistance. The company also has several discounts to help you lower your premium, including savings for good students, safe drivers, teen drivers and homeowners. It may be worth noting that Progressive’s customer satisfaction score from J.D. Power is below the industry average, so if you are looking for a company with highly-rated service, Progressive might not be the best fit.

Learn more: Progressive Insurance review

Allstate

Although its average full coverage premium is the highest on our list, potentially turning away drivers looking for cheap car insurance, Allstate’s rate still comes in lower than New Jersey’s average. The company offers several endorsements like sound system equipment coverage and roadside assistance to help you build a policy that works for you. And you might be able to lower your premium with the company’s discounts, including the Drivewise telematics program, which might save you money and help you learn safer driving habits.

Learn more: Allstate Insurance review

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Average car insurance cost in New Jersey

In New Jersey, drivers pay an average of $1,757 each year for full coverage car insurance, according to 2021 data obtained from Quadrant Information Services. Minimum coverage costs an average of $847 each year. This is a bit higher than the national average cost of car insurance, which is $1,674 per year for full coverage and $565 per year for minimum coverage, but, compared to the rates of other states, New Jersey’s average rates aren’t too expensive. Keep in mind that your rates will likely differ from the averages based on your individual rating factors.

New Jersey is a small state, but its roads are relatively congested. The high number of cars on the road could make it more likely to get into an accident, which could increase average insurance costs.

Average annual premium for minimum coverage in New Jersey Average annual premium for full coverage in New Jersey
$847 $1,757

How to find the best car insurance in New Jersey

Because New Jersey is a mostly urban state, the state has a high population density and more cars on the road. That means car accidents are more likely, which is reflected in the higher-than-average auto insurance premiums. To find coverage that works for your needs and budget, there are some steps you can take.

Consider minimum insurance requirements in New Jersey

New Jersey takes a unique approach to car insurance requirements. The state offers two options for minimum required coverage: the basic policy and the standard policy. Basic policies include just property damage liability and personal injury protection (PIP) coverage and come with the option to purchase bodily injury liability coverage. If you choose a basic policy, your ability to add other coverage types could be limited. Standard policies include bodily injury liability, property damage liability and PIP and also come with a broader range of optional endorsements to choose from. Understanding New Jersey’s car insurance laws could help you decide if you need to purchase more coverage than just the minimum required.

Consider lender requirements

Drivers with loans or leases may have additional car insurance requirements to consider. Minimum coverage does not provide any coverage for damage to your vehicle, which lenders often require. Coverage that includes vehicle damage is called full coverage insurance and it adds comprehensive coverage and collision coverage. Lenders could also potentially have stipulations on how much liability coverage you must purchase and how high your comprehensive and collision deductibles can be. Gap insurance could also be a useful coverage if you have a loan or lease on your vehicle. This option helps pay the difference between your loan balance and your vehicle’s cash value if your car is totaled.

Consider your individual needs

Everyone has different needs for car insurance. Maybe you have a low credit score and need to find a company that does not rate credit as heavily as others. Maybe you have accidents or tickets on your record or a teen driver to insure. Or maybe you want a company that offers a user-friendly digital app or online customer portal. Knowing your needs can help you determine what companies might work for you.

Car insurance discounts in New Jersey

Many auto insurance providers in New Jersey offer car insurance discounts that can help customers save money on their annual premiums. Some common discounts in New Jersey include:

  • Young driver discounts: If you are under 25 and a full-time student or if you insure a full-time student on your policy, you may be able to take advantage of good student discounts, driver training discounts or distant student discounts.
  • Safe driver discounts: Telematics programs involve letting your insurance company track your driving habits with a mobile app or plug-in device might help you develop safer driving skills and earn a personalized discount. You could also save if you maintain a clean driving record for a certain number of years, which varies by company.
  • Other discounts: Multi-policy discounts often offer some of the highest savings opportunities. If you insure your auto with the same company as your home, condo or renters insurance policy, you could save on both policies. Additionally, companies often offer discounts for selecting paperless bills, paying your premium in full or signing up for automatic payments.

Every provider typically offers a different set of discounts, which is why it can be helpful to shop around and see which savings you are eligible for. Even if a certain provider gives you an expensive quote, you may be able to save a significant amount of money by taking advantage of discounts.

Frequently asked questions

What is the cheapest car insurance company in New Jersey?

NJM, Geico and Travelers offer some of the cheapest car insurance rates in New Jersey based on our research. However, every insurance company offers different rates and has a different rating algorithm. Additionally, every driver brings a unique set of circumstances to their car insurance search. This is why getting quotes from several companies can be helpful. Every company will weigh your rating factors differently.

Is New Jersey a no-fault state?

Yes, New Jersey is a no-fault state. If you are in an accident, your personal injury protection coverage is designed to help pay for your injuries and any injuries that your passengers sustain, regardless of who is at fault for an accident. This also means that, depending on what type of policy you choose, your ability to sue a driver for your injuries might be affected.

Do I have to buy car insurance in New Jersey?

Yes. New Jersey requires that drivers purchase at least the state minimum types and levels of car insurance coverage to drive legally. In New Jersey, you can opt for a basic policy or a standard policy to satisfy the requirements, based on your needs. Driving without car insurance in New Jersey is illegal and can result in fines and license suspension. If you cause an accident and don’t have insurance coverage, you’ll be responsible for the cost of the damages and injuries you caused out of your own pocket.

How can I pay less for car insurance?

Taking advantage of discounts is one of the easiest ways to lower your car insurance premium. Maintaining a clean driving record by avoiding tickets, accidents and DUI convictions is also helpful in preventing premium increases. If you are a safe driver or drive infrequently, a telematics program might help lower your premiums. One of the best ways to find a more competitively priced policy is to get quotes from several insurance providers.

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 coverage that meets 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.

Bankrate Scores

Bankrate Scores primarily reflect a weighted rank of industry-standard ratings for financial strength and customer experience in addition to analysis of quoted annual premiums from Quadrant Information Services, spanning all 50 states and Washington, D.C. We know it is important for drivers to be confident their financial protection covers the likeliest risks, is priced competitively and is provided by a financially-sound company with a history of positive customer support.

To determine how well the best car insurance companies satisfy these priorities, third-party agency ratings from J.D. Power, AM Best, S&P, NAIC, and Moodys had the most impact on the companies’ Bankrate Scores. As price is a common consideration for drivers, we analyzed quoted premiums based on 40-year-old male and female drivers with a 2019 Toyota Camry. This profile, assessed across more than 35,000 ZIP codes in the U.S., provided a basis on which drivers may compare each provider.

While coverage options, insurer availability, affordability and customer experience are often the top priorities, Bankrate also analyzed each insurer’s online and mobile resources for policy management and claims handling. Insurance is rapidly evolving to keep pace with our digital world, so these aspects also carried weight in determining Bankrate Scores.