Car Insurance in Vermont

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Only one state in the country – Wyoming – has a smaller population than Vermont. However, the folks who do live in Vermont seem to love driving there. Consider recent data: Close to 557,000 people are licensed to hit the road in the state, and that’s out of a total population of about 626,000. So Vermont has a per-capita licensure rate of .89 – above both the national average and the average of key similar states. Vermont’s registration figures tell a similar tale. With 621,000 registered vehicles, the per-capita rate tops .99. Finally, the same report indicated that Vermonters drive 20% further each year on a per-capita basis than the national average.

The good news for insurance costs is that they’re usually not based on per-capita figures. As an example, despite making the most of their driving opportunities, people in Vermont still end up travelling fewer overall miles than residents of nearly any other state in the union. That’s important because how far you drive has a definite influence on how much you pay for auto coverage.

Events that lead to more claims, like crashes and auto thefts, can boost costs as well. For Vermont, this means dealing with roughly 12,600 motor-vehicle accidents per year, including 65 that involve a fatality. The state additionally sees some 195 stolen vehicles annually, which works out to approximately 30 thefts per 100,000 people. More than 2,450 people are also arrested each year in the state for driving under the influence (DUI). Serious violations like that can lead to a significant increase in policy prices. But again, those numbers aren’t very big in the grand scheme of things. Maine – with similar demographics to Vermont – reports close to 790 auto thefts and 5,835 DUI arrests annually. In other words, Maine has 140% more stolen vehicles and over 300% more arrests for driving under the influence. 

Aging, too, affects insurance premiums. The impact is especially heavy for younger male drivers, who often face the very highest rates. This is reflected in our own study, which is detailed below. The short story here is that when we created sample profiles at three different age levels, the most expensive projected quotes went to the youngest drivers. 

In the real world, young drivers make up a very small percentage of Vermont motorists. Less than 2% of the licensed drivers in the state are men aged 19 and under. Tallying up all drivers in that age bracket still only adds up to about 3.3% of Vermont’s total driving population. Turning to older drivers, insurance expenses generally start rising again when you pass the age of 65 – just not to the same point as for younger motorists. It’s partly explained by the fact that older drivers get into far fewer accidents. In Vermont, a recent study found a rolling five-year average of 60 major crashes per year for drivers 65 and over in the state. Drivers under 25 were involved in 85 major crashes annually using the same measurement. 

The result is that you can end up with fairly inexpensive auto insurance premiums in Vermont. Our data shows the average national cost for a one-year sample policy is about 18% higher Vermont's average rate in our study. 

Cheapest Car Insurance Companies in Vermont

The rates shown here are based on a study performed by Quadrant Information services on behalf of U.S. News. The study examined rates from the nine largest car insurance companies in the United States, using certain driver profiles. Your rates will differ.

How We Found the Cheapest Car Insurance in Vermont

At U.S. News, we’re all about helping people make life’s important decisions. Our college rankings, launched in 1983, set the standard in educational rankings. Our ranking in other fields, like healthcare, government, and the automotive sphere, help people and thought leaders make choices that make lives better. Now we’re continuing to empower you with the information you need to make the right choices for your life with our Cheapest Car Insurance Rankings.

Our Study Rates

For this study, U.S. News worked with Quadrant Information Services to analyze a report of insurance rates in all 50 states from the 10 largest national car insurance companies, though not every company operates in every state Quadrant obtained publicly available rate data that car insurers file with state regulators. Our study rates are based on profiles for both male and female drivers aged 25, 35, and 60. Vehicles used include the 2015 Honda Civic, 2015 Toyota RAV4, and 2015 Ford-F-150, with annual mileage ranging from 6,000 and 12,000. Three car insurance coverage levels were used, as were credit tiers of good, fair, and poor. Clean driving records and records with one accident, one speeding violation, and one DUI were also used in the calculations of certain driver archetypes. 

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To get the state-wide study rates shown here, we computed the mean rate for male and female drivers ages 25, 35, and 60 who drive 12,000 miles per year, have medium coverage, good credit, and a clean driving record. The rates shown here are for comparative purposes only and should not be considered “average” rates available by individual insurers. Because car insurance rates are based on individual factors, your car insurance rates will differ from the rates shown here.

How Much Does Car Insurance Cost in Vermont?

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The sample rates for our hypothetical Vermont drivers were on the low side overall. According to our analysis, the average expected price of an auto insurance policy was $1,120 per year in the state. It’s an annual savings of $200 versus the national average. On the other hand, near neighbors Maine and New Hampshire are the two cheapest states in the country for insurance costs. Representative policies were quoted at $860 annually in the first and $900 annually in the second.

The data for Vermont also stood out for the wide range of different representative price points suggested by the different insurance companies. Geico was way down at $525 per annum, and that was a whopping $1,400 less expensive than for the same driver profile at Progressive.

Vermont Car Insurance Rates by Age

Among the most influential factors on insurance coverage come from your personal demographics. Age and gender are particularly important, and they work together to affect how much you pay for auto insurance everywhere. To see how this plays out in Vermont, we developed a series of standardized driver profiles that were based on men and women at three age levels. The profiles had good driving records and drove 12,000 miles annually. We took into account vehicle types by setting up profiles for the same drivers in a 2015 Honda Civic car, a 2015 Toyota RAV4 crossover, and a 2015 Ford F-150 pickup. Every one of our hypothetical drivers had good credit, too, along with a medium level of insurance coverage.

The lowest pricing in Vermont came when we submitted profiles marked as female drivers aged 60 years old. With those boxes checked, we were provided with sample policy costs of $990 per year. The average annual price in our analysis for auto coverage bumped up by $10 when we created profiles for men of the same age. The gap between the genders narrowed further when we lowered the age in the profiles to 35. Insurers raised their annual estimated rates for female and male driver profiles to $1,090 and $1,095, respectively, if we inquired about policies for people who were 35 years old. The biggest difference arose when we assumed an age of 25 for our sample drivers. Then the representative average cost of an annual insurance policy was $1,220 for the female profile and $1,330 for the male profile. 

Company

25-year-old male

25-year-old female

35-year-old male

35-year-old female

60-year-old male

60-year-old female

Allstate

$1,695.96

$1,545.84

$1,363.12

$1,363.12

$1,302.86

$1,302.86

Geico

$646.42

$572.12

$527.12

$498.15

$456.95

$456.95

Nationwide

$1,231.25

$1,126.37

$966.88

$946.88

$885.86

$825.15

Progressive

$2,136.86

$1,998.26

$1,930.45

$1,946.33

$1,720.52

$1,710.41

State Farm

$1,520.71

$1,372.93

$1,242.96

$1,242.96

$1,124.75

$1,124.75

USAA

$749.68

$720.14

$551.16

$549.14

$503.40

$505.70

Vermont Car Insurance Rates by Credit Score

To see the effect of credit scores on insurance costs, we created a series of similar driving profiles for men and women who had good, fair, or poor credit. All profiles represented customers who drive 12,000 miles a year, have a clean driving record, and are shopping for medium levels of insurance. Digging deeper, we also ran the same profiles for people at 25, 35, and 60 years of age, and when they’re driving a 2015 Honda Civic, a 2015 Toyota RAV4, and a 2015 Ford F-150.

The average representative premium for someone in Vermont with fair credit – based on predicted costs for model driver profiles – was $1,400 for every 12 months. From that baseline, adjusting credit levels had an inverse impact on outlays. Profiles with lower credit scores returned higher projections of $2,335 per year for auto coverage. If we changed our input so that the driver profiles in our study had good credit, the expected price of an average policy fell to $1,120 yearly. 

Company

Good

Fair

Poor

Allstate

$1,428.96

$1,591.77

$2,110.32

Geico

$526.29

$680.82

$1,403.62

Nationwide

$997.07

$1,067.02

$1,256.88

Progressive

$1,907.14

$2,367.36

$3,382.74

State Farm

$1,271.51

$1,938.30

$4,534.13

USAA

$596.54

$749.56

$1,317.12

Vermont Car Insurance Rates by Driving Record

Vermont citizens can also benefit from lower insurance pricing with a good driving record, according to our statistics. It’s not so much that a past ticket or crash always means you’re a bad driver. But the insurance companies’ statistics do indicate a correlation between having a poor driving history and filing more claims. Of course, whatever the reasoning, the outcome is the same in Vermont. The lowest representative premiums in our study – $1,120 annually – were associated with profiles that had clean, ticket-free driving histories. Any black spot on your record can lead to coughing up more green on your insurance outlays. One speeding ticket led to a price jump of $180 a year in our Vermont study. Meanwhile, one accident pushed average sample costs to $1,650 per year. Convictions for driving under the influence (DUI) raised prices higher, although not appreciably so. Coverage required $1,695 annually if our model insurance applications contained mention of a DUI.

These study rates are drawn from our curated driver profiles for men and women at ages 25, 35, and 60. Our profile criteria also include good credit scores, medium levels of coverage, and 12,000 miles of annual driving in three vehicles: a 2015 Honda Civic, a 2015 Toyota RAV4, and 2015 Ford F-150 pickup.

Company

Clean record

With 1 speeding violation

With 1 accident

With 1 DUI

Allstate

$1,428.96

$1,633.96

$1,885.47

$1,944.61

Geico

$526.29

$549.19

$919.26

$1,389.25

Nationwide

$997.07

$1,138.92

$1,460.44

$1,953.10

Progressive

$1,907.14

$2,405.21

$3,299.95

$2,265.79

State Farm

$1,271.51

$1,392.92

$1,514.33

$1,392.92

USAA

$596.54

$682.84

$825.81

$1,212.74

Vermont Car Insurance Rates by Coverage Type

Of course, not all drivers want the same amount of insurance protection. With that in mind, we also varied our profiles by high, medium, and low coverage levels. What we kept the same were details such as having both a good credit score and an accident-free driving record. Also in place was our 12,000-mile annual driving limit with 2015 model-year examples of the Honda Civic, Toyota RAV4, and Ford F-150. In terms of personal characteristics, our sample rates averaged the data from female and male driver profiles represented as 25, 35, and 60 years old.

The results were right in line with our expectations: We expected insurers would charge extra money for more coverage, and they did. The surprise was that the price adjustments were relatively moderate. For our driver profiles with the legal minimum amount of insurance, the average study rate was $1,090 a year. An additional $30 annually, and $1,120 in total, was enough to expand protection to a medium level. A mere $4.60 per month beyond that was all it took for the maximum amount of car insurance coverage in Vermont. On a percentage basis, the representative price for the highest level of coverage was less than 8% above the study cost for the lowest level. Thinking of it like this can help make an annual outlay of $1,175 per year seem like a reasonable expense for the additional peace of mind. 

Company

Low

Medium

High

Allstate

$1,393.45

$1,428.96

$1,477.50

Geico

$508.34

$526.29

$546.42

Nationwide

$1,015.78

$997.07

$987.14

Progressive

$1,838.91

$1,907.14

$2,054.07

State Farm

$1,197.39

$1,271.51

$1,350.58

USAA

$578.63

$596.54

$619.42

Vermont Car Insurance Rates by Annual Mileage

Vermont ranked 49th in the country in a recent survey of the overall length of public roads in each state. Yet even if Vermonters wanted to rack up more miles, they might not have to worry about expensive insurance. Annual mileage has a rather small effect on study premiums in the state. In our analysis, the representative rate for sample drivers covering 12,000 miles annually was $1,120. Cutting the distance in half, down to 6,000 miles of annual travel, saved $50 in insurance costs in our study over a 12-month period. The average representative rate for an annual policy at this benchmark was $1,070 per year. That’s a difference of less than 5% in cost despite reducing mileage by 50%.

Note that these rates are for illustration purposes only. They are based on driver profiles for 25-, 35- and 60-year-old men and women with a clean driving history and good credit records. To further expand our sample size, profiles were created for a medium level of insurance on a trio of popular vehicles: the 2015 Ford F-150, 2015 Toyota RAV4, and 2015 Honda Civic. 

Company

6,000 miles annually

12,000 miles annually

Allstate

$1,327.82

$1,428.96

Geico

$489.85

$526.29

Nationwide

$997.06

$997.07

Progressive

$1,907.14

$1,907.14

State Farm

$1,113.94

$1,271.51

USAA

$570.85

$596.54

Vermont Car Insurance Rates by City

Living in a crowded city tends to be more expensive than living in smaller towns, and this often extends to how much you have to pay for car insurance. The congested streets of a large metropolis simply leave more potential for accidents. Big cities are also prone to have more crime, including more car thefts. Neither are much of an issue in Vermont, since the largest city in the state is Burlington, with approximately 42,000 people. Only two other Vermont towns have more than 10,000 people in them. This helps explain why premiums only varied between Vermont cities by roughly $65. The second cheapest cost projections in our study were with sample profiles that had addresses in the second largest town. Representative rates for driver profiles in South Burlington – population 17,900 — were $1,070 per year. The absolute least-expensive study rates in the Vermont evaluation were $1,065 a year for profiles in Winooski, where about 7,300 people have their homes. As for the costliest quotes in our analysis, these were provided for profile in Newport, a town with closer to 5,000 folks. For that scenario, the yearly study premiums were $1,135. 

That outcome is the result of getting quotes for our comprehensive series of custom driver profiles. They allowed us to see statistics for male and female drivers with no accidents on their driving record and no problems on their credit scores. The vehicles used for our research were the 2015 Toyota RAV4, 2015 Ford F-150, and 2015 Honda Civic. In all scenarios, we assumed drivers were covering 12,000 miles annually and had a medium level of insurance coverage. We also broadened our database by developing sample profiles for drivers who were 25, 35, and 60 years old.

City

Average Rate

Burlington

$1,080.17

South Burlington

$1,070.31

Rutland

$1,096.94

Essex Junction

$1,094.40

Barre

$1,113.03

Montpelier

$1,115.30

Winooski

$1,066.42

St. Albans

$1,100.94

Newport

$1,135.30

Bellows Falls

$1,128.51

Vermont Auto Insurance Minimum Coverage Requirements

Vermont mandates that all drivers carry both liability insurance and uninsured motorist coverage in the following amounts:

  • Bodily injury liability coverage of $25,000 for one person killed or hurt and $50,000 for two or more people in a single accident.
  • Property damage coverage of $10,000 for a single accident.
  • Uninsured motorist bodily injury liability coverage of $50,000 for one person killed or hurt and $100,000 for two or more people in a single accident.
  • Uninsured motorist property damage coverage of $10,000 for a single accident.

Of course, drivers can (and many should) choose to carry coverage in amounts higher than the minimums. Vermont does not require drivers to carry collision coverage or comprehensive coverage.

For drivers with the financial means to do so, it is possible to post a bond or self-insure in Vermont rather than be insured by a company.

Cheapest Car Insurance in Vermont

Note: Due to USAA's limited membership, we excluded them from this segment evaluation.

Category

Cheapest Company

Single Young Adult Drivers

Geico

Married Adult Drivers

Geico

Senior Drivers

Geico

Drivers with Good Credit

Geico

Drivers with Poor Credit

Nationwide

Drivers with a Clean Record

Geico

Drivers with One Speeding Violation

Geico

Drivers with One Accident

Geico

Drivers with One DUI

Geico

Low-mileage Drivers

Geico

High-mileage Drivers

Geico

Drivers with Low Coverage

Geico

Drivers with High Coverage

Geico

Drivers with Used Cars

Geico

Drivers with New Cars

Geico

We established which companies have the lowest average insurance representative rates in Vermont by comparing prices for a wide span of drivers. Included were sample profiles for women and men, all with clear driving histories. Additionally, we ran the profiles for drivers at three ages – 25, 35, and 60 – and with a medium level of insurance coverage. We held credit scores constant at “good” in each situation, while limiting miles driven to 12,000 per year. As for what was driven, our vehicle examples were the 2015 Toyota RAV4, 2015 Ford F-150 and 2015 Honda Civic.

After calculating the insurance companies’ policy estimates for all variables, Geico finished with the lowest premiums in our study: $525 per year. USAA, which focuses on coverage for military members and their families, also came in under $600 annually. The sample pricing from that company was $595 a year. 

Progressive was notable for its expensive Vermont coverage, assigning average annual representative rates of $1,910 to our example drivers. For context, that’s almost 35% higher than comparison policies from the next priciest company, Allstate. (The average charge for a car insurance policy in our study from Allstate was $1,430 per year.) 

Why Car Insurance Rates Vary in Vermont

The findings from our study provide a good indication of what causes car insurance rates to go up in Vermont and what causes them to go down. For instance, drivers with good credit and a history of safe motoring will tend to pay less for the same policy than folks with blots on their records. Older drivers also save money compared to younger ones. However, outside data does show that the trend reverses itself when you reach 65 or so. At this stage, costs often begin rising again. Your gender, how far you drive, and how much coverage you want will all make a small but noticeable impact on premiums in Vermont as well. 

If it doesn’t always seem logical, remember that insurers peg their rates to the likelihood that a given driver will make a claim. Here’s an example: Even though you wouldn’t think getting married makes you a better driver, the raw numbers indicate that single people file more claims – so all else being equal, single drivers have higher premiums. 

A final factor makes perfect sense. Insurance companies boost coverage pricing for more expensive cars and trucks. That’s because it would require more money to fix or replace those vehicles if you file a claim.

How to Get the Cheapest Car Insurance in Vermont

Our study results can point the way to insurance savings for many people in Vermont. As you may have noticed, the biggest influence on premiums didn’t come from any of the individual factors we identified for testing. It was the insurance companies themselves that made the largest difference in cost. Sample drivers in our research could have saved nearly 75% in coverage expenses simply by moving from the most to the least expensive company for insurance estimates. Although these figures are only meant as examples, they are good evidence for shopping around in the real world before you put your money out. 

Naphat Photography / Getty Images

Moreover, you should bring up those other factors from our analysis anyway. They won’t necessarily have a significant impact on your bottom line, but insurers will apply them as part of their regular price calculations. And combining similar small discounts can add up to more noticeable savings. These include paying less money if you agree to online billing or having your rates lowered for passing an advanced driving-skills class. If you go that last route, just ensure that any drop in your premium outweighs what you pay for the class – otherwise there won’t be a net savings to your budget. 

You can also ask any affinity groups you belong to, such as alumni or veterans organizations, if they have money-saving partnerships with insurance companies. Your own employer or credit union may have teamed up with an insurer in the same way. This is essentially like getting a group discount for your individual insurance needs. 

To take the opposite tack, you can have your premiums specifically tailored to your individual driving habits. The better those habits, the less you pay. You will have to plug a high-tech tracking device into your car, however. That’s how insurers gather data about how you drive. 

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Important Laws Around Auto Insurance in Vermont

Like most states, Vermont follows “at-fault” principles when it comes to damages in an auto accident. These guidelines require that the person who is responsible for causing the damages is responsible for paying them. In “no-fault” states – at least in certain circumstances – each person’s own insurance pays damages regardless of who caused the accident. 

Vermont then determines the specific dollar amount of the damages using the doctrine of comparative negligence: You can still recover damages if you were partially at fault in the accident, but the amount is decreased by the extent to which you were responsible. In other words, if the Vermont court rules that you were 25% responsible for a crash, the amount you can recover is cut by the same percentage. 

A physical insurance card is no longer necessary in Vermont. Proof of financial responsibility can be shown “using a portable electronic device.” 

Along with other penalties, driving without insurance in Vermont may require that you take out separate financial responsibility coverage. This type of policy attaches to you as a person, not to a specific car, and is designed for any time you drive any vehicle. 

Vermont Driving Laws and Punishments

Auto insurance is mandatory in Vermont, and the penalty for driving without it can include a civil penalty of up to $500, accrual of points on your driving record, and/or the need for financial responsibility insurance.

Using handheld electronic devices while driving is illegal in the state. Vermont law goes on to clarify that it’s okay to use a smartphone or similar device to communicate with first responders in an emergency or if you’ve pulled off the road and are safely and legally stopped. Relying on a hands-free mode for your phone is also legal. The penalty for a first violation is a fine of between $100 and $200, plus two points on your record. Second and subsequent violations – within a two-year period – can double those amounts. You get more points on your record for violations in school and work zones, too. 

Jaromir Chalabala/EyeEm / Getty Images

Vermont prohibits driving under the influence of alcohol or any other drug. For the former, a person with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) level of 0.08 is assumed to be under the influence. “Other drugs” include marijuana, which is legal in Vermont. You are assumed to be under the influence for the purposes of this statute if your ability to safely operate a car is “diminished or impaired in the slightest degree.” 

A first conviction can entail a fine of at least $750, two years in prison, or both. If any person dies as a result of the incident that led to the violation, you can be fined up to $10,000 and spend at least one year, but not more than 15 years, in jail. Penalties get stricter for more convictions, such that a fourth or further violation can be punished by a fine of up to $5,000, up to 10 years of prison time, or both. You should also be aware that by driving on Vermont roads, you effectively consent to a breath or blood test for determining if you are under the influence. If you take the test and fail, your license will be suspended for at least 90 days. If you refuse a reasonable request to be tested, your license will be suspended for at least six months. 

Vermont Car Insurance FAQs

Is car insurance required in Vermont?

Yes, Vermont does require auto insurance. You can take out a traditional policy, post a bond, or self-insure.

Which cars are required to be insured in Vermont?

Any motor vehicle being operated in Vermont needs to be insured. 

When should I get car insurance in Vermont?

Vermont law states that new residents have 60 days to register their vehicles after moving, and insurance is required for registration. Therefore, you also have 60 days to get your car insured.

What happens if my car is not properly insured in Vermont?

The penalties for driving without insurance in Vermont include a fine of up to $500 and a suspended or revoked license. Also, you may have to get financial responsibility insurance. 

Is Vermont a no-fault state?

No, Vermont is an at-fault state. Following an accident, the police or insurance companies will determine which driver caused the accident and assign blame. That driver's insurance is responsible for paying the other party's injuries or damages. 

Do I need uninsured motorist coverage in Vermont?

Yes, you need uninsured motorist coverage in Vermont. The policy must be for at least $50,000 for one person killed or injured and $100,000 for two or more people. Coverage for property damage by uninsured motorists has to carry a deductible of $150 and is limited to $10,000 per claim.

Is liability insurance required in Vermont?

Yes, you must be covered by liability insurance in Vermont. For bodily injury or death, the minimum coverage is $25,000 for one person and $50,000 for two or more people. The minimum required coverage for property damage is $10,000.

Does Vermont accept digital insurance cards?

Yes, Vermont accepts digital insurance cards. This can be in the form of an app from your insurance company or an image of your insurance card.