State Farm and USAA are both well-known insurance companies in the United States. State Farm’s ubiquitous red-and-white logos adorn local agencies across the country, while USAA is known for exclusively serving the military community. With both companies generally receiving high customer satisfaction reviews, how do you know which is right for you?

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Bankrate compares State Farm vs. USAA in terms of average auto insurance rates for a variety of scenarios, J.D. Power customer satisfaction scores, AM Best financial strength ratings, discounts and mobile app experience. Our comparison might help you decide which carrier can best fit your needs.

Learn more about State Farm and USAA

State Farm vs USAA: Car insurance rates comparison

Both State Farm and USAA are among the best car insurance companies in the nation and sell numerous insurance products, according to Bankrate’s research methodology. The biggest difference is eligibility; USAA only writes policies for military members and qualifying family members.

Both carriers have superior AM Best financial strength ratings and higher-than-average J.D. Power claims satisfaction scores. However, although USAA’s score is the highest in the study, the carrier doesn’t qualify for official ranking due to its eligibility restrictions. USAA also edges out State Farm with a lower average cost for car insurance. We combined these metrics — eligibility, customer satisfaction, financial strength and cost — with factors like discounts and digital functionality into a Bankrate Score. USAA earns the highest possible score at a perfect 5.0, while State Farm stands strong with a 4.7.

Car insurance company Bankrate Score AM Best J.D. Power Average annual premium for minimum coverage Average annual premium for full coverage
State Farm 4.7 A++ (Superior) 892/1,000 $456 $1,397
USAA* 5.0 A++ (Superior) 909/1,000 $354 $1,209

*Not officially ranked by J.D. Power due to eligibility restrictions

Rates by credit score

Your credit score is commonly reviewed by carriers in most states when you apply for insurance, and State Farm and USAA are no different. Having a higher credit score typically reflects lower premiums. One caveat to this is if you live in California, Hawaii or Massachusetts, where the use of credit as a rating factor is banned. Michigan bans the use of your actual credit score but does allow companies to rate based on factors that make up your credit score. Our research reveals that USAA generally has lower rates for all credit tiers when compared to State Farm.

Average annual full coverage premiums by credit tier

Car insurance company Poor Average Good Excellent
State Farm $3,584 $1,614 $1,397 $1,107
USAA $2,317 $1,309 $1,209 $1,070

Rates by life stage

Your stage of life will also affect how much you pay for coverage. Married drivers tend to pay slightly less than single drivers for full coverage, but rates increase quite a bit once a teen driver is added. This is because teen drivers have the highest likelihood of crashes among all age groups. Insurance rates are higher to offset this greater change of a claim. While USAA is cheaper for single and married couples, State Farm’s average full coverage rate with a teen is slightly lower than USAA’s.

Average annual full coverage premiums by life stage

Car insurance company Single Married Married with 16-year-old driver
State Farm $1,397 $1,392 $2,973
USAA $1,209 $1,038 $3,001

Rates by driving record

Both State Farm and USAA’s average premiums are higher for drivers with a speeding ticket, accident or DUI conviction on their record. If you have a history of driving incidents, you may be viewed as a high-risk driver and face higher premiums. USAA is generally lower than State Farm, but State Farm has a slightly lower average full coverage premium for drivers with a DUI conviction. Keep in mind, though, that not all companies will write insurance for drivers with a DUI, so you may need to shop for another carrier entirely.

Average annual full coverage premiums by driving record

Car insurance company Clean driving record Speeding ticket Accident DUI conviction
State Farm $1,397 $1,606 $1,769 $2,293
USAA $1,209 $1,464 $1,742 $2,313

State Farm vs USAA: Discounts

When comparing State Farm vs. USAA, it is helpful to review the car insurance discounts that each company offers. Although both offer a plentiful amount of potential savings, some of the discounts are distinct to each carrier. Both offer multi-policy, multi-vehicle and good student discounts, but there are a few others you may not be as familiar with.

State Farm

  • Steer Clear: Drivers under the age of 25 with a clean driving record for the past three years may be eligible for this program with State Farm, which could earn you a discount.
  • Drive Safe and Save: This is a car insurance telematics program through State Farm that requires enrollment. Your driving is monitored through a smartphone app and, depending on your driving habits, you may receive a discount.
  • Safety equipment: If your vehicle uses an anti-theft system, airbags or anti-lock brakes, you may be eligible to receive a discount.

USAA

  • SafePilot: USAA’s version of the telematics program also tracks your driving habits with an app and assigns you a personalized discount at your policy renewal.
  • Military installation: If you store your vehicle in a garage or storage facility on base, you may receive additional savings.
  • Loyal member: If your parents had USAA and you also purchase a policy of your own, you might qualify for a loyalty discount.

State Farm vs USAA: Online and mobile experience comparison

State Farm and USAA both have robust online tools and features which give customers access to convenient policy management. Both carriers offer a mobile app for access to ID cards, bill payment, roadside assistance and submitting a claim. However State Farm has other features for on-the-go policy management, such as the ability to message an agent through the app or obtaining technical assistance.

State Farm

  • App Store — 4.8/5.0: The app includes a full list of features as mentioned above, and the result is a number of positive reviews. Customers note how easy it is to navigate through the app and make mobile payments.
  • Google Play — 4.6/5.0: The Android version has the same abilities as the Apple app, including following a claim step-by-step through the claims process. The positive reviews also highlight the ease of use, but the lower ratings detail frustration with the updating process.

USAA

  • App Store — 4.8/5.0: Overall, the USAA app is well-received, with customers responding positively to how easy it is to use. The app gives you access to EVA, which is the digital voice assistant available for help through the app.
  • Google Play — 4.3/5.0: The ratings for USAA’s Android app are lower versus State Farm. Customers seem frustrated by frequent updates and glitches.

Frequently asked questions

    • Your choice of company will depend on what you are looking for and your unique rating factors. For example, if you’re looking at USAA vs. State Farm, your eligibility may be the first thing you review. If you aren’t a military member, veteran or qualifying family member, you won’t be able to get coverage with USAA. If you do qualify for both companies, you may choose State Farm over USAA for its local agencies, or USAA over State Farm for its lower average rates. Understanding your specific wants and needs can help guide you to a company that is right for you.
    • Bankrate reviewed hundreds of carriers and found USAA, Clearcover, Geico and State Farm to be among the top choices. Keep in mind, though, that the best company for your needs will depend on your specific situation. It is important to review a variety of aspects of each carrier, including financial strength, coverage and discounts available, customer service ratings and digital assets.
    • Yes, you can switch auto insurance at any point. It may be convenient to switch at your renewal period, but you generally do not have to. One word of caution, be sure not to cancel your old policy until you have your new one officially in place. This will help avoid any lapse of coverage.

Methodology

Bankrate utilizes Quadrant Information Services to analyze 2022 rates for all ZIP codes and carriers in all 50 states and Washington, D.C. Rates are weighted based on the population density in each geographic region. 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 2020 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.

Credit-based insurance scores: Rates were calculated based on the following insurance credit tiers assigned to our drivers: “poor, average, good (base) and excellent.” Insurance credit tiers factor in your official credit scores but are not dependent on that variable alone. Four states prohibit the use of credit-based insurance scores as a rating factor in determining auto insurance rates: California, Hawaii, Massachusetts, and Michigan. Washington’s ban on factoring credit in premiums is currently on hold in the courts.

Age: Rates were calculated by evaluating our base profile with the age 16 (base: 40 years) applied..

Incidents: Rates were calculated by evaluating our base profile with the following incidents applied: clean record (base), at-fault accident, single speeding ticket, single DUI conviction and lapse in coverage.

Bankrate Score

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 Moody’s 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 nearly 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.