Auto insurance shopping increases as high rates send consumers elsewhere

Auto insurance - Shopping around online

Drivers are looking for new ways to make their coverage affordable, including leaving current insurers

According to a new report from JD Power and TransUnion, for the first quarter of 2024, drivers were increasingly shopping for new auto insurance policies in the hopes of saving money on their monthly premiums.

These drivers felt there were no more ways to save on existing policies

Consumers started comparison shopping for new auto insurance policies because they didn’t see any new ways to be able to apply discounts to their existing coverage, said the report.

Auto insurance - Shop Now - Rates increase

It showed that throughout January, shopping rates had risen to 12.1 percent from having previously been 11.7 percent. In February, that figure increased again, reaching 12.5 percent.  In March, there was a jump instead of a gradual climb, as rates of shopping for policies hopped up to 13.5 percent.

Consumers in Southern states shopped for new policies at a higher rate than anywhere else in the country.  The rate of changing policies or insurers also increased during that time, having arrived at 3.9 percent, from having been 3.6 percent at the close of last year.

The cost of auto insurance was the primary driving force behind this trend

The price people are paying for their coverage is one of the primary reasons they have been shopping for other options. In fact, according to the report, almost 22 percent said that they were looking elsewhere because the rate they were paying their current insurer was too high.  During the previous quarter, that figure was only 16.9 percent, representing a significant shift.

Furthermore, 14.6 percent of consumers said that they were looking for a new insurer because they’d recently experienced a rate increase. During the last quarter, that figure was 7.9 percent.

Rates climbed last year in several categories

“Both property and auto insurance shopping change dropped at the end of 2023, mostly due to predictable seasonality,” said the authors of the JD Power and TransUnion report. “As the industry moves through 2024, market dynamics are likely to evolve, and a case can be made that shopping will remain strong well into 2024.”

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