Rachael Brennan has been working in the insurance industry since 2006 when she began working as a licensed insurance representative for 21st Century Insurance, during which time she earned her Property and Casualty license in all 50 states. After several years she expanded her insurance expertise, earning her license in Health and AD&D insurance as well. She has worked for small health insuran...

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Chris Harrigan has an economic degree from Limestone College and an MBA from Clemson University. He previously managed auto insurance claims for Enterprise Rent-A-Car. Currently, he is using his business and insurance expertise to provide insurance data analysis and visualizations to enhance the user experience.

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Reviewed by Chris Harrigan
Former Auto Insurance Claims Manager

UPDATED: Sep 14, 2020

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Here's what you need to know...

  • One very important rating factor that will be used to determine your rates is age or driving experience
  • There are states that do not allow age to be a determining factor for premiums
  • Young men are more expensive to insure because they are riskier drivers

As you shop for car insurance, you are asked to give your personal details and information on your vehicle so that the insurer to can assess how risky it is to insure you.

If you have a clean record, you will pay standard rates. If you have violations or other blemishes, there is a good chance that you will be a high-risk driver.

Unfortunately, many are not familiar with the fact that you do not have to have blemishes at all to be classified as “high-risk”.

In fact, your age and gender alone can be enough to take you from standard rates to high-risk rates.

Be sure to compare quotes using the FREE tool above! Enter your zip code to get started now!

How does age play into the determination of car insurance rates?

There are dozens and dozens of different factors that can either raise your premiums or help to bring them down. Some of these factors are factors that change, some are those that you have control over, and others are beyond your control.

Some of these factors are factors that change, some are those that you have control over, and others are beyond your control.

One very important rating factor that will be used to determine your rates is age or driving experience.

Some have argued that using age as a factor that affects car insurance rates is discrimination, but after doing the research it has been found that it is fair to use age because the statistics show a difference.

Based on what the data from accident reports, nationwide accident data, and claims information, it has been found that young drivers are riskier drivers.

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What does the data show?

Younger means riskier because there are more crashes in these categories and the crashes are typically caused by the younger operator.

Not only does the data show that a 17-year-old is highly more likely to get into an accident, the data also shows that there are higher fatal crash rates in this age range.

According to a study conducted by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, 60 percent of traffic deaths involved occupants who were between 16 and 19.

This is just one alarming statistic that explains why age is important when determining costs.

Another statistics that show just how risky a 17-year-old driver can be to an insurer is how much damage young people cause when they get behind the wheel.

According to the Center for Disease Control, young people that fall between 15 and 24 equate to only 14 percent of the population.

This same age group is responsible for 30 percent of the motor vehicle injuries in males and 28 percent of females.

Considering that the youngest drivers in the age group cause the most damage, you can see why insurance for a 17-year-old would be much more than the insurance for someone who is out of the bracket.

What is the difference between driving experience and age?

There are states that do not allow age to be a determining factor for premiums. That does not mean that your age range still will not have an affect on the rates you are quoted.

In states like California, where the insurer cannot solely use age to raise your rates, another category called driving experience is used.

This category can be far more effective in rate determination when a person is not licensed at 16 when they are allowed to apply.

Driving experience is how long you have been licensed to drive by yourself.

Your experience can include the years you have been licensed in the state, in other states, and possibly internationally.

Companies that consider driving experience will have a system where after a set number of years the driver is called an experienced driver.

When do you get a break for driving experience?

Typically, companies will offer a break on rates when you have accumulated 9 years of continuous experience and you have the evidence.

If you were licensed at 16, your rates will see a large drop at 25 years of age.

If you did not get your license until later, it will be 9 years from that date.

Along the way, you will qualify for good driver discounts that can drop your premium. Most of the time, you will need at least 3 years of experience before you can be classified as a good driver.

If you are currently 17 and have been licensed for a year, you will have 2 more years to wait for this sizable discount that lowers the policy premium by as much as 20 percent.

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How does gender play into rate determination?

Now that you understand why age and driving experience are two important factors that are going to have an affect on your pricing for the next several years, you need to learn more about gender and rates.

It is a prove fact that men pay more for car insurance across the board.

Young men are more expensive to insurance because they are riskier drivers.

The data shows that 1 in 19 men will get into a crash and only 1 in 25 women will. The data also shows that men are more likely to speed, drive longer distances, and are at-fault in more accidents.

Young men under 25 pay about $676 more than females in their age group for coverage.

The only way for the rates the balance out is for time to pass. It is not until a young man gets experience under their belt that the rates will begin to drop.

The rates never completely balance out, but by the time you become an experienced driver the difference between male and female rates is not as noticeable.

In fact, women pay about 2 to 5 percent more between 35 and 50.

Still, on average men will pay more over a lifetime for coverage because of the high costs between 16 and 25.

The Average Premium

There is no way to give you an average of how much a boy who is 17 will pay for their insurance.

Not only are there different base rates in every state with every provider, there are also so many other factors to consider.

The car, the coverage, the policy, whether or not they are on their parent’s plan, and their record are all factors that can affect rates.

This is why you need to do a rate comparison to find out how much coverage will actually cost.

How can young men keep their insurance rates down?

If you want to find the most competitively priced insurance for a young male, it is time to start shopping.

Here are tips to consider:

  • If you purchase full coverage, select high deductibles
  • Price the cost of insurance for cars before you make a purchase
  • Check into the Good Student Discounts to see if you qualify
  • Limit mileage allowances to receive low mileage discounts
  • Require your teen to take driver education classes for a discount
  • Comparison shop

Comparison shopping is a must when you want affordable rates for a 17-year-old male.

There are companies that believe in offering fair pricing for teens. By shopping around, you can find out which companies really do this.

An online rate comparison tool will help you save money by showing you how much you can expect to pay with a youthful operator on your plan.

Use this plan from home, enter all the household information, and then you can switch insurance if it saves you a great deal of money.

Use our FREE tool below to start comparing quotes instantly!