How to Find Cheap Full Coverage Car Insurance in California

scenic view of california freeway next to the ocean with car

Car insurance is something all drivers need in California, but you need a better idea of what you’re actually looking for. Drivers can find very basic coverage that only covers costs incurred by others if that driver causes an accident, or they can seek out more extensive coverage offering a greater level of financial protection. That second type of car insurance is what’s known as a full coverage policy.

What is California Full Coverage Auto Insurance?

Car insurance in California, as in most states, is mandatory. If you drive a car here, you must have proof of a current policy. But you’re allowed coverage options that start with a very basic policy known as liability insurance. Those who wish to get more extensive protection should explore their full coverage options.

Many lenders won’t finance your vehicle unless you have full coverage. So you might have no choice except to shop for this more comprehensive level of insurance protection if you’re seeking a loan to purchase your car.

A full coverage car insurance policy goes beyond the state’s minimal liability coverage terms at its most basic definition. Let’s take a closer look at both types of insurance.

What Is the Difference Between Full and Liability Car Insurance?

Liability insurance is coverage that pays only for the injuries and property damage sustained by another driver, passenger, or another party when you’re at fault. It doesn’t pay for your medical costs or damage to your own vehicle in such a situation.

The most basic liability coverage in California consists of $15,000 in bodily injury coverage, per person, up to a figure as high as $30,000 per accident, and an additional $5,000 in property damage coverage.

While liability coverage is enough insurance to keep drivers legal behind the wheel in the Golden State, many feel that it’s not enough coverage to make them feel financially protected. You could still incur high costs out of your own pockets in a collision. That’s why many drivers look into securing that higher level of coverage with a policy that offers greater protection. That’s where full coverage car insurance comes in.

What Does California Full Coverage Car Insurance Include?

Full coverage includes two additional forms of coverage that provide major benefits:

Collision coverage. It pays for damage caused to your vehicle in an accident, whether with another vehicle, a single-vehicle accident such as a rollover, or one caused by contact with a non-human object such as a fence, tree, or building.

Comprehensive coverage. It pays for non-collision damage to your vehicle. This can include just about every way your car can be lost or damaged except by accident. Examples include theft, fire, flood, vandalism, or collision with a deer or other animal.

smiling young woman looking at phone for cheap car insurance

In addition, your full coverage policy will provide protection against uninsured or underinsured motorists. In California, it’s expected that all drivers carry at least minimum liability coverage. That’s also the case in most other states. Theoretically, that means that if you’re involved in an accident, the driver who’s at fault will provide coverage for injury to you or damage to your vehicle.

One thing to keep in mind is that, according to the Insurance Research Council, about one in eight drivers on the road today don’t carry any insurance. Therefore, your chances of being involved in an accident with an uninsured driver at least once in your life might be too high to ignore. If that should happen, though, or the responsible party doesn’t carry a sufficient dollar amount of liability insurance, you’ll be protected if you have a full coverage policy.

Which Insurance Option is Best for You

Your next step is to determine which option—full coverage or basic liability—is the best option in your situation. As you might assume, full coverage costs more than minimum liability coverage. That makes sense since such a policy offers you a much greater level of financial protection.

To put it in real terms, California drivers pay an average of $773 for minimum liability coverage and just over $2,000 annually for full coverage car insurance in 2021.

There are ways, however, to pay the lowest rates possible on full coverage. One easy way you can do this is by adjusting your deductible. The deductible is the amount you agree to pay before your insurance begins to kick in.

For example, if you have a $1,000 deductible and had $5,000 worth of collision damage, you’d pay the first $1,000 before your insurer paid the next $4,000. Most policies have deductibles of between $500 and $1,000. As you might have figured, the higher the deductible you assume, the lower the auto insurance rate you’ll be charged for your insurance policy. Conversely, the lower your deductible, the more you’ll pay in premiums.

Find Cheap Full Coverage Car Insurance in California

You can also earn the best possible rate on your car insurance by first consulting with a reputable car insurance company. Explain your circumstances, your driving habits, and budgetary needs so your agent can steer you to the best possible deals.

Auto insurance in California can be a hassle, but your Cost-U-Less agent will always be on hand to cut through the confusion. Your agent will make sure you understand all of the difficult terminologies and can get the coverage that leaves you feeling secure and protected at the lowest possible cost. Call us at (800) 390-4071, start your car insurance quote online, or visit one of our offices near you.