Wouldn't life be great if we could tell you the one company that has the cheapest policy rates for a school permit? It's not quite that easy, unfortunately, as there are a lot of unknowns such as how many years you have been driving, the deductible level you need, and where you live, that all go into determining the rate you pay. This article will cover the best ways to avoid overpriced car insurance and will give you a good start to your coverage search.

Figuring out which company quotes the most affordable auto insurance rates for a school permit in South Carolina may require a little more work thank just comparing rates from one or two companies.

Each auto insurance company has a different formula for setting rates, so to begin we'll rank the most budget-friendly auto insurance companies in South Carolina. It's a good idea to know that South Carolina auto insurance rates are calculated based on many things that will increase or decrease the cost of a policy. Improving your credit rating, having a teen driver, or getting a ticket for running a stop sign can trigger rate changes that can cause some rates to be cheaper than before.

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The Hartford normally has some of the most affordable car insurance rates in South Carolina at around $752 a year. This is $857 less than the average price paid by South Carolina drivers of $1,609. USAA, State Auto, Auto-Owners, and SC Farm Bureau Mutual also are some of the lowest-priced South Carolina auto insurance companies.

In the above rates, if you have coverage with Auto-Owners and switched to The Hartford, you could realize an annual premium reduction of in the vicinity of $355. Drivers with SC Farm Bureau Mutual might save as much as $496 a year, and Southern Farm Bureau insureds might reduce rates by $534 a year.

If you want to see how much you could save, click here to get quotes or quote prices from the following companies.

Bear in mind that those estimates are averaged across all types of insureds and vehicles and are not factoring in a rate surcharge for a school permit. So the company that fits your needs best may not even be in the top 18 companies in the list above. That's why you need to compare rates from as many companies as possible using your own personal information and vehicle type.

The make and model of vehicle you are insuring is one of the biggest factors that determines if you can find economical insurance for a school permit. Vehicles with average performance, good crash test ratings, or a low likelihood of liability claims will cost much less to insure than high performance models.

The list below estimates coverage premiums for a handful of the cheaper vehicles to buy insurance for.

Cheapest Vehicles to Insure for a School Permit in South Carolina
Make, Model, and Trim Level Estimated Cost for Full Coverage
Honda Accord LX-P 4-Dr Sedan $2,987
Ford Escape XLT 4WD $3,016
Honda CR-V EX-L 4WD $3,024
Hyundai Elantra SE Touring Station Wagon $3,206
Toyota Prius $3,235
Ford Edge SE 2WD $3,326
Ford Explorer XLT AWD $3,355
Jeep Wrangler Rubicon 4WD 2-Dr $3,364
Volkswagen Jetta SE 2.5 Station Wagon $3,422
Honda Odyssey EX W/Rear Entertainment $3,516
Chevrolet Impala LS $3,523
Ford Focus S 4-Dr Sedan $3,516
Toyota Camry LE $3,545
Toyota RAV4 Sport 4WD $3,554
Chevrolet Equinox LT 2WD $3,545
Nissan Altima 2.5 4-Dr Sedan $3,553
Ford F-150 Lariat Super Cab 4WD $3,574
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Data based on single female driver age 17, no speeding tickets, no at-fault accidents, $1,000 deductibles, and South Carolina minimum liability limits. Discounts applied include claim-free, and safe-driver. Table data does not factor in specific South Carolina garaging location which can affect premium rates significantly.

Looking at the rates, we can tell that cars like the Honda Accord, Ford Escape, Honda CR-V, Hyundai Elantra, and Toyota Prius should be a few of the cheaper vehicles to insure for a learners permit. The cost of a car insurance policy will be more expensive because of the fact that there is more claim risk for a school permit, but generally speaking those makes and models will most likely have the lowest insurance rates that you'll find.

Rate comparison of full coverage and liability-only

Saving money when shopping for auto insurance is probably important to the majority of people, and a great way to buy cheap insurance for a school permit in South Carolina is to only buy liability insurance. The chart below shows the difference between insurance costs with full coverage compared to only the South Carolina minimum liability coverage. The premiums are based on no claims or violations, $250 deductibles, drivers are not married, and no additional discounts are factored in.

If we average the cost for all age groups, physical damage insurance costs an additional $2,437 per year more than insuring for liability only. Many people question if paying for full coverage is worth it. There is no definitive guideline of when to exclude comprehensive and collision coverage on your policy, but there is a general school of thought. If the yearly cost of full coverage is more than around 10% of the replacement cost of your vehicle minus the policy deductible, then it might be time to buy liability only.

Picking a highly-rated insurer can be challenging considering how many companies there are to choose from in South Carolina. The ranking data shown next could help you choose which car insurance providers you want to consider buying from.

The rankings below are for large nationwide companies, so smaller regional companies will not be included in this list. To compare prices from these top insurers and more, click this link.

Best Ten Auto Insurance Companies for a School Permit in South Carolina
Company Value Customer Service Claims Customer Satisfaction A.M Best Rating Overall Score
Travelers 93 98 99 88% A++ 95.1
USAA 83 99 100 91% A++ 94.1
AAA Insurance 91 95 92 90% A 93.3
Nationwide 85 95 97 89% A+ 92.4
Allstate 77 100 97 88% A+ 90.7
State Farm 80 94 96 88% A++ 90.6
The Hartford 88 93 91 87% A+ 90.4
Safeco Insurance 91 95 85 88% A 90.2
Progressive 88 94 83 88% A+ 90.1
American Family 91 86 95 83% A 89.7
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Data Source: Insure.com Best Car Insurance Companies

Discounts on South Carolina insurance

Insurance providers that offer coverage for a school permit may also provide special discounts that could reduce prices by as much as 30% if you can meet the requirements. The best auto insurance companies and a selection of discounts are detailed below.

The illustration below illustrates the difference between insurance rates with and without some available policy discounts. The information is based on a male driver, a clean driving record, no at-fault accidents, South Carolina state minimum liability limits, full physical damage coverage, and $1,000 deductibles.

The first bar for each age group shows the average annual price with no discounts. The second shows the rates with vehicle safety, continuous coverage, passive restraint, anti-theft, paperless filing, and good student discounts applied. With discounts applied, theaverage amount saved on auto insurance for a school permit is 28% or $555.

South Carolina car insurance rates

South Carolina auto insurance rates are based on many factors that will increase or decrease the price of your policy. Simply having a birthday, having a teenage driver, or having an at-fault accident can produce rate changes that may make certain companies more affordable than before. And not only may your rating factors change, but insurers file new South Carolina car insurance rates every year or even multiple times each year to adjust for unexpected claims or profits. Significantly higher claims can cause increased rates, while long-term profits may cause cheaper South Carolina car insurance rates.

For instance, the bar chart below shows the companies that have the cheapest car insurance in South Carolina for a 40-year-old female driver with no prior accidents, a clean driving record, and good credit. If we estimate rates based on her current risk profile, The Hartford may offer the lowest car insurance rates in South Carolina at $775 a year. This is $834 less than the average price paid by South Carolina drivers of $1,609. USAA, State Auto, Auto-Owners, and Southern Farm Bureau are the remainder of the cheapest South Carolina auto insurance companies.

Now we will give the driver in the first example an accident claim, poor credit, and a few blemishes on her driving record. Due to the fact that every insurance company uses their own formula to set their prices, getting updated rate quotes may now present a different set of the cheapest companies as shown below.

National Grange Mutual now has the lowest car insurance rate in South Carolina with State Farm, Travelers, USAA, and The Hartford also being competitive. This example proves why consumers need to do a thorough rate comparison to get the best auto insurance rates for a school permit.

Insurance rates are determined by many things and can change without notice, so the best option a year ago may now not even be in the top five.