Jessica Fox Last Updated On: July 25, 2023

How to Find and Save on the Best Car Insurance in Iowa

Iowa might be known for many things, like corn and the famous Iowa State Fair, but it’s also known for cheap car insurance. In fact, living in Iowa can save you up to 20% off the national average car insurance cost. And although hogs outnumber people 4 to 1 in the Hawkeye State, there’s plenty of demand for affordable car insurance. 

But does cheap car insurance mean subpar coverage and service? And how much can you really save? We’ll explore all that and more, next. 

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Table of Contents

Minimum Coverage vs Full Coverage

If you’re looking for cheap car insurance in Iowa, you’re likely going to consider minimum car insurance at some point. After all, it’s the cheapest you can legally go and still drive on the road.  So, what exactly is the difference between minimum and full coverage?
  • Minimum coverage is the minimum required car insurance coverage you must have to legally drive.
    • It usually only includes any injuries you cause to others and property damage you cause.
  • Full coverage typically also includes comprehensive and collision, which gives you more of a safety net should anything happen.
Not everyone needs or wants full coverage, but you must have at least the minimum coverage required by Iowa in order to legally drive in the state. Next, we’ll dive into what those legal requirements are. 

Iowa Car Insurance Requirements

Each state sets its own minimum required car insurance coverage. In the Hawkeye State, that means you need to have the following in place before getting behind the wheel:

  • $20,000 bodily injury per person
  • $40,000 bodily injury per accident
  • $15,000 property damage per accident

If you’re tempted to go without insurance, think again: the fines and penalties can be hefty. We’re talking a fine of $325-$645, possible vehicle impoundment and driver’s license suspension, vehicle towing and storage fees, a new driving exam, and more. 

Keep in mind that having the minimum required coverage might be your cheapest option in Iowa, but it gives you little in the way of protection. It doesn’t cover damages to your vehicle or any of your medical costs, which leaves you on the hook for potentially hefty costs even in the event of a small fender-bender, let alone a full accident. 

But getting yourself more than minimum car insurance coverage doesn’t have to break the bank. Keep reading for that and more. 

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Car Insurance Options in Iowa

Getting minimum coverage isn’t your only option for car insurance. In fact, you have plenty of choices when it comes to customizing your insurance policy to your needs and budget. Here are some of the coverage options available to you:
  • Bodily Injury Liability (Required): This covers the other driver and their passengers for medical bills if you cause an accident. It also gives you a legal defense if they sue.
  • Property Damage Liability (Required): This covers the other driver’s vehicle for any damages that you cause.
  • Collision (Optional): This covers damages to your vehicle after a collision (with another car or a stationary object like a telephone pole), regardless of who is at fault.
  • Comprehensive (Optional): This covers your vehicle for damages not caused by a collision, such as hitting an animal, theft/vandalism, weather damage, and more.
  • Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist (Optional): This covers you if you’re in an accident with someone who doesn’t have car insurance or doesn’t have enough to cover the damages. This coverage is particularly useful in hit-and-runs (more on that here).
  • Medical Payments (Optional): This covers the medical costs of you and your passengers if you’re involved in an accident, regardless of who is at fault.
But that’s not all. You can pick and choose from the optional coverage options above to add to the required coverage, and then further customize your policy with add-on coverage, also called riders.  These include:
  • Gap Coverage: If your leased/financed vehicle is totalled, this helps you pay off the remaining amount you owe.
  • Roadside Assistance: This covers towing your vehicle to a nearby repair shop.
  • Rental Car Reimbursement: If your vehicle is being repaired, this covers your rental car costs.
  • Rideshare: If you use your vehicle for rideshare services like Uber or Lyft, this offers protection for you and your passengers.
Everyone likes to pay as little as possible for car insurance coverage. But customizing your policy and going above the minimum required coverage could end up saving you more in the long run; by paying a few extra bucks per month, you could avoid repair bills and medical costs that run into the thousands of dollars. Plus, there are ways to save on car insurance without skimping on coverage. More on that next.

Average Iowa Car Insurance Costs

Before we dive into ways to save, it helps to know the average cost of car insurance in Iowa. After all, it might be cheaper than you think, which can help you get even more coverage. Here are the stats:

  • The average minimum coverage policy in Iowa is $252 annually
  • The average full coverage policy in Iowa is $1,260 annually

This can be compared to the U.S. national average costs: $622 for minimum coverage, and $2,014 for full coverage. 

Iowa drivers are already saving on car insurance coverage just by living in the Hawkeye State, especially compared to neighbors like Minnesota and Illinois where the car insurance costs run higher. 

Of course, your actual car insurance quotes can vary depending on a number of factors. The car you drive, your gender and age, and your driving history all play a role when it comes to calculating your quotes. Where you live in Iowa also has an impact: Ankeny has the cheapest car insurance in Iowa but expects to pay more in Sioux City. 

Next, we’ll show you ways to find savings on your car insurance in Iowa. But if you want to know how much you’ll pay, click here for access to free quotes. 

How to Find Cheap Car Insurance in Iowa

Cheap car insurance doesn’t have to mean low-quality insurance. You can find great coverage with savings so that you don’t have to skimp on the coverage you want. Here are some tried-and-true tips for saving on Iowa car insurance: 

  • Discounts: Every insurer offers some form of discounts on car insurance, although they tend to vary. However, you can often stack multiple discounts together to multiply your savings. Here are some common discount types to look for:
    • Multi-policy
    • Safe driver
    • Multi-driver
    • Good student
    • Student away
    • Safety features
    • Loyalty
    • New client
    • And more
  • Multiple Quotes: This is going to help you save the most on car insurance. By shopping around for coverage and comparing multiple quotes, you’ll be able to find the best rate/coverage for you. On top of this, be sure to review your policy before it auto-renews each year and see if you can find savings elsewhere; setting it and forgetting it can cost you. 
  • Coverage: Ideally, you’d have all the coverage you can possibly need, but this isn’t a reality for most. By reviewing your coverage and trimming the fat, you can save on your premiums. For example, if you have an older car that wouldn’t be worth the deductible to repair, you might want to re-evaluate collision or comprehensive.
  • Deductible: By raising your deductible, you’ll pay less in premiums. Keep in mind, you want to be sure you can afford that higher deductible should anything happen to your vehicle.
  • Claims: Be sure a claim is worthwhile before you submit, because filing a claim is almost sure to raise your rates. A small repair job might be worth handling out-of-pocket rather than risking higher rates going forward and losing your claims-free discount.
  • Bundle Policies: Most insurers offer discounts for bundling multiple insurance products with one provider, like home and auto. You can also get a discount for having multiple drivers with one insurance provider. Be sure to shop around to be sure you can’t find separate home or car insurance that saves you more than the multi-policy discount.

Aside from these, maintaining a clean driving history is your ticket to paying low car insurance premiums. Even if you have accidents or moving violations on your record, they will eventually drop off and your rates will lower, provided you don’t incur any new infractions.

You can also impact your car insurance costs by maintaining a good credit score. Some states restrict the use of credit scores for calculating car insurance, but Iowa isn’t one of them. Paying your bills on time and reviewing your credit score regularly for errors can directly impact how much you pay for car insurance.

Want even more savings? Read more here

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Get Iowa Car Insurance Quotes

Now that you know what to expect in terms of car insurance costs and coverage options in Iowa, it’s time to get quotes. Luckily, this step is easy: simply search online for car insurance quotes in your area, or contact your insurance agent. Be sure to have your information ready, like your VIN, driving history, previous insurance, and personal information, so that you can get accurate quotes. 

In a hurry? Get access to free quotes fast just by clicking here. We’ve got you covered.


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