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The real reasons behind rising car insurance prices

Written by Katie Dee

Edited by Alyssa DiCrasto

Published on 2023-12-04

Read time: 3 min

In the past year, car insurance rates have risen exponentially, and understanding why might be the key to saving money on your own premium. Given the personalized nature of car insurance and with so many factors to consider, answering this question can feel daunting. In order to help consumers understand this complex issue, we have asked several industry experts the same question: why have car insurance rates risen faster than anything else in the economy in 2023?

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Modern Vehicles and Accident Frequency Elevate Fees

The recent surge in car insurance rates is because of several key factors. First, modern vehicles are equipped with advanced technology and safety features, increasing repair costs. These technologies are expensive to replace when damaged, driving up insurance claims.

In some areas, accident frequency and severity have increased, particularly in congested urban centers. Distracted driving and more vehicles on the road contribute to this trend, resulting in more claims and higher rates.

In summary, the recent car insurance rate increase is driven by the high cost of repairing modern vehicles, escalating medical expenses, increased accident rates, and the impact of inflation on repair and labor costs, all of which contribute to rates rising faster than inflation.

Justin Roberts, Owner, Amity Insurance Group

Rising Repair and Medical Costs Impact Prices

The constant increase in automobile insurance premiums is mostly attributable to the rising expense of repairs and medical care. Because of their advanced technology and complex parts, modern automobiles have significantly higher repair costs than their classic counterparts. Insurance rates have been affected by the high cost of repairing these complicated cars because of the need for specialist equipment and trained mechanics.

Douglas Mercer, Automotive Service Manager, Automotive Service Manager

Pandemic-Era Health-Care Expenses Raise Rates

Car insurance rates are increasing, partially because of growing healthcare expenses. Hospitalization costs and other medical services have skyrocketed since the pandemic, and this has had significant effects on the insurance industry. 

More recently, there has been a noticeable increase in healthcare expenses. Just last year, the cost of medical services increased by 5.4%. Meanwhile, the amount most people pay for health insurance shot up by a significant 20.6%.

Coverage like Medical Payments (MedPay) and Personal Injury Protection (known as PIP insurance) help cover medical bills for both the driver and passengers after an accident. As these medical services become more expensive, car insurance companies raise their prices to balance out the costs.

James McNally, Managing Director, SDVH [Self Drive Vehicle Hire]

Inflation has played a major role

Car insurance rates have surged in recent years due to rising inflationary costs, increased accident frequency and severity (the cost to repair a car), and other factors. However, there are positive signs that rates are starting to stabilize across the country. 

We are starting to see carriers slow down the rate filings and rate increases in several states as they achieve rate adequacy. Time will tell if the current round of rate filings is sufficient to be in compliance with regulations in each state. I’ve also seen several of the largest auto carriers post improved loss ratios over the last few months, indicating a leveling off. 

Jason Wootton, CSO, Rate Retriever

Even with the increase in car insurance rates, there are still ways for you to save money. The quickest and easiest way to save is to compare costs from several different insurers in your area. Take our quick quiz to find the best car insurance company near you and access savings in just 30 seconds.

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