The words "economical" and "auto insurance" really shouldn't be used together, especially when you are shopping around for the lowest insurance prices for veterans. Because of the high cost, let's learn about a few of the things that determine insurance rates, and figure out some ways to slash the price of the next policy you buy.

Finding good, low-priced car insurance is difficult, and finding out which company offers the lowest-priced insurance rates for veterans in South Carolina will take even more perseverance. Each auto insurer has a proprietary method for filing rates in each state, so we need to take a look at the most affordable insurance companies in South Carolina.

It's important to know that South Carolina insurance rates are influenced by many factors that control the price of your policy. Improving your credit rating, buying a new vehicle, or getting a couple of tickets can trigger rate changes that can now make some companies cheaper than competitors.

Best Car Insurance Prices for Vets

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South Carolina car insurance ranked by cost per year
Rank Company Cost Per Year
1 The Hartford $745
2 USAA $1,015
3 State Auto $1,105
4 Auto-Owners $1,119
5 SC Farm Bureau Mutual $1,286
6 Southern Farm Bureau $1,286
7 National Grange Mutual $1,335
8 Travelers $1,356
9 State Farm $1,422
10 Allstate $1,573
11 Progressive $1,660
12 Encompass $1,707
13 Nationwide $1,760
14 Safe Auto $1,927
15 GEICO $2,041
16 Bristol West $2,395
17 Liberty Mutual $2,513
18 Safeco $2,663
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The Hartford quotes some of the cheapest car insurance rates in South Carolina at around $745 annually. USAA, State Auto, Auto-Owners, and SC Farm Bureau Mutual also are some of the lowest-priced South Carolina car insurance companies.

In the rate table above, if you currently have coverage with Auto-Owners and switched to USAA, you may see a yearly price reduction of upwards of $104. Insureds with SC Farm Bureau Mutual could save as much as $271 a year, and Southern Farm Bureau customers might realize rate reductions of up to $271 a year.

These premiums are averaged across all drivers and vehicles in South Carolina and and are not figured with a rate discount for veterans. So the company that is best for you may not even be in the top 18 companies shown above. That underscores the importance of why you need to compare rates from multiple companies using your own personal information and vehicle type.

One of the more important criteria that are looked at to help calculate auto insurance rates is where you live. Cities with larger populations or higher claim trends like Florence, North Charleston, and Sumter are more likely to pay higher prices, whereas areas with lower crime rates and fewer weather claims tend to receive slightly lower rates.

The illustration below shows the most expensive areas in South Carolina for veterans to purchase car insurance in.

Where does South Carolina rank for car insurance cost?
Rank City Annual Premium
1 Florence $1,311
2 Summerville $1,290
3 North Charleston $1,262
4 Goose Creek $1,246
5 Sumter $1,239
6 Charleston $1,235
7 Mount Pleasant $1,225
8 Myrtle Beach $1,222
9 Socastee $1,199
10 Saint Andrews $1,195
11 Columbia $1,177
12 Greenville $1,144
13 Greenwood $1,143
14 Hilton Head Island $1,139
15 North Augusta $1,128
16 Anderson $1,127
17 Rock Hill $1,124
18 Spartanburg $1,116
19 Greer $1,087
20 Aiken $1,086
21 Taylors $1,085
22 Mauldin $1,061
23 Wade Hampton $1,058
24 Simpsonville $1,050
25 Easley $1,024
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Table data uses approximated as the specific South Carolina residence address can raise or lower insurance rates significantly.

The diagram below shows how different deductible levels can change yearly insurance costs when trying to find cheap insurance for veterans in South Carolina. The prices are based on a single female driver, comprehensive and collision coverage, and no discounts are applied.

The chart above illustrates that a 30-year-old driver could pocket $434 a year by changing their physical damage coverage from a $100 deductible to a $500 deductible, or save $652 by choosing a $1,000 deductible. Young drivers, like the 20-year-old category, could roll back prices as much as $962 or even more just by using higher deductibles. If you do raise deductibles, it will now be necessary to have additional savings on hand to allow you to cover the extra out-of-pocket expense, which deters some people from using high deductibles.

Does full coverage make sense?

Finding cheaper insurance is important to the majority of people, and one common way to pay less for insurance for veterans in South Carolina is to not pay for full coverage. The information below visualizes the comparison of auto insurance costs with and without physical damage coverage. The price estimates are based on no driving violations, no at-fault accidents, $250 deductibles, marital status is single, and no discounts are applied.

If the expense is averaged for all age categories, physical damage coverage costs $1,982 per year more than buying just liability insurance. At some point, almost every driver questions when is the right time to remove full coverage. There is no definitive guideline that is best for determining when to drop full coverage, but there is a general guideline you can use. If the annual cost of having full coverage is 10% or more of replacement cost minus your deductible, then it might be time to consider dropping full coverage.

There are a few cases where dropping full coverage is not recommended. If you haven't paid off your loan, you have to maintain full coverage as part of the loan conditions. Also, if you can't afford to buy a different vehicle if your current one is totaled, you should keep full coverage in place.

Drive responsibly or pay higher rates

In a perfect world, the best way to obtain low insurance premiums in South Carolina for veterans is to drive attentively and avoid tickets and accidents. The illustration below illustrates how speeding tickets and fender-benders can drive up insurance rates for different age categories. The costs are based on a married female driver, comprehensive and collision coverage, $500 deductibles, and no discounts are applied to the premium.

The data in the chart shows the average cost of an auto insurance policy per year with no accidents and a clean driving record is $1,674. Receive two speeding tickets and the average cost swells to $2,376, an increase of $702 each year. Then add in two accidents along with the two speeding tickets and the yearly cost of insurance for veterans in South Carolina goes up to an average of $5,103. That's an increase of $3,428, or $286 per month, just for a couple of infractions!

Why you should be shopping around

South Carolina insurance rates are determined by lots of factors which can substantially decrease or increase the cost of your policy. Simply having another birthday, having a claim, or getting into an accident can trigger changes in premium that can now make some companies cheaper in comparison to the competition. In addition, car insurance companies modify rates as often as every quarter in order to remain profitable. Higher than normal claim frequency or severity can cause a rate increase, while lower claim expenses may cause cheaper South Carolina car insurance rates.

The chart below shows a variety of companies that have the cheapest car insurance in South Carolina for a 40-year-old male driver with no accidents, a clean driving record, and a decent credit rating. If we look at prices based on his current situation, The Hartford may offer the best car insurance rates in South Carolina at $768 a year. This is $841 less than the average premium paid by South Carolina drivers of $1,609. USAA, State Auto, Auto-Owners, and SC Farm Bureau Mutual are also on the list of the cheapest South Carolina auto insurance companies.

The chart below compares rates after we give the driver in the first chart a chargeable claim, slightly worse credit, and a speeding ticket. Since every car insurance company has a different process for determining rates in each state, comparing prices may now result in a new list of companies as shown below.

National Grange Mutual now has the cheapest auto insurance in South Carolina with Travelers, State Farm, USAA, and The Hartford also having competitive pricing. This demonstrates why drivers need to compare many different companies when trying to get the best insurance rates for veterans.

Rates consist of many things and change substantially, so the most economical company six months ago may now be one of the more expensive options.