Car insurance is a must have item if you intend to drive in the U.S., but can be costly -- very costly. A recent study found that the average American pays a total of $84,000 for car insurance over their lifetime.
That figure stings a little -- especially considering the average American spends a total of $150,000 on new cars in their lifetime, less than twice what we spend on insurance for those vehicles. In many parts of the country, $84,000 will also buy a decent house.
Insurance.com conducted the survey, gathering figures using the average American who buys their first car at 21 and begins insuring it then. The company also factored in getting married at 27 and adding two teen drivers between the age of 46 and 50. Insurance.com used these figures, averaged amongst drivers with all types of claims and driving histories, to determine the total lifetime car insurance cost.
For comparison, here is what Insurance.com found the average lifetime costs to be for a few other common household purchases:
- Shoes: $2667
- Four years of college: $30,420
- Homeowners insurance: $34,245
- Cars: $150,066
While the lifetime insurance cost figure is shocking, Insurance.com does provide a number of ways to save on insurance. The top three are to actually shop around for prices, maintain a clean driving record, and keep a good credit score. Other ways to save include updating your coverage for how much you actually drive, taking a defensive driving/driving safety course, seeking discounts offered by employers and professional groups, getting rid of collision and comprehensive coverage on older cars, and bundling insurance plans, such as those on houses and cars.