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NV Car Insurance Premiums Among The Highest In The Nation

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You might have noticed your car insurance payment is pretty high. In fact, only four states have higher car insurance rates than Nevada. 

At the city level, Las Vegas is the eighth most expensive at $2,609 a year on average.

Why is that? And how does the insurance industry decide what to charge? 

Alyssa Connolly is with The Zebra, a Texas-based company that compared insurance rates across the country

“It has a lot to do with weather and population,” Connolly said.

More and more people are moving to Nevada, especially to the Las Vegas Valley.

“The more people you have on the roads the more they bump into each other,” she said.

Insurance companies look at a lot of factors when determining how much to charge for insurance. Connolly said they look at everything from your address to your gender and whether you're renting a home or you own it.

But she said that is changing as some factors like gender are considered controversial. California recently banned the use of gender as a risk factor in determining insurance rates.

“Nevada doesn’t exclude any rating factors," she said, but not all companies look at all of those factors.

More companies are turning towards determining how much you should pay on how good a driver you are.

“The insurance company is moving in the direction to gather that data," Connolly said, "So there’s devices you can plug into your car and apps that you use on your phone to send that information to car insurance companies and say, ‘Hey, I’m actually a safe driver. So why don’t you judge me more on that than my gender or my marital status or other things that seem quite arbitrary.'”

However, Connolly pointed out the best way to lower your insurance rate is by being a better driver.

“That’s the best thing you can do to have lower rates," she said, "So, avoid tickets and accidents because not only are those going to cost you in the short term but they stay impacting your rates for three years.”

The Zebra also recommends shopping around for insurance every six to 12 months because insurance companies are changing their rates - often.

Alyssa Connolly, Director of Marketing Insights, The Zebra

 

 

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Since June 2015, Fred has been a producer at KNPR's State of Nevada.