How to get the best and cheapest car insurance for those who bleed scarlet and gray.

Ohio, so named for the Seneca word ohiːyo’, meaning “good river,” has got a lot to offer. The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame is one of the most visited sites in the state. It’s home to two of the country’s largesƒt theme parks. And the rolling hills of the Appalachian Plateau cover half the state. Maybe that’s why its population has been steadily growing for the last 70 years. Either that or the abundance of peanut-butter-and-chocolate treats known as Buckeyes.

If you’re thinking about moving to Ohio—or if you want to know how to secure the best and cheapest auto insurance rates in your area—this guide is for you.

Cheapest Car Insurance Companies in Ohio

Here are the cheapest insurance companies in Ohio for the following user profile: a single, 30-year-old male with a clean driving record who drives a 2012 Honda Accord and pays a $1,000 deductible for the state’s minimum liability insurance. We averaged rates for the twenty most populated cities in Ohio.

Insurance CompanyQuotes
Progressive$28/month
Allstate$53/month
State Farm$56/month
GEICO$70/month
Travelers$83/month

Among the biggest-name insurers in Ohio, it’s Progressive that would be the best choice for this sample driver. At $28/month, this clean-driving quote is a real steal. However, his rates won’t necessarily be yours. That’s why auto insurance quotes comparison is so important. Only you and you alone can compare and select from plans that work with your driver profile, budget, and needs.

Best Car Insurance Companies in Ohio

The best or most reputable car insurance companies aren’t always going to give you the cheapest rates. Ohio drivers might score a lower quote with a larger insurance company like GEICO or Allstate…if they follow the rules of the road like our sample driver. High-risk drivers might face higher rates, and so might drivers who prefer excellent customer service at the expense of squeezing out the most savings.

Insurance CompanyInsurify Composite ScoreQuotes
American Family88$154/month
GEICO87$70/month
Allstate86$53/month
Nationwide84$116/month
State Farm83$56/month
Travelers81$83/month
Liberty Mutual80$92/month
Progressive78$28/month

The Insurify Composite Score is calculated by analyzing multiple factors that indicate the quality, reliability, and health of an insurance company. Inputs to the score include financial strength ratings from A.M. Best, Standard & Poor’s, Moody’s, and Fitch; J.D. Power ratings; Consumer Reports customer satisfaction surveys; mobile app reviews; and user-generated company reviews. The following are the top-rated companies that offer car insurance in Ohio. For the complete list, see Insurify’s best car insurance companies.

Most Popular Car Insurance Companies in Ohio

How did we decide who won the popularity contest? The most popular companies are defined as those that are the largest insurers in that state’s insurance market. In other words, the more policies a company writes, the more popular that company is.

According to the Insurance Information Institute (III), these are the most popular car insurance companies in Ohio by market share:

  1. State Farm
  2. Progressive
  3. Allstate
  4. GEICO
  5. Nationwide

Cheapest Car Insurance in Ohio by City

The cost of car insurance can vary significantly from place to place, depending on many variables. That’s why while Columbus, Cincinnati, and Cleveland might all start with a Big C, they have less in common when it comes to the cost of insurance.

Insurify analyzed the latest data to find the cheapest quotes in the five most populated metro areas in Ohio.

CityInsurance CompanyQuote
ColumbusProgressive$28/month
ClevelandProgressive$41/month
CincinnatiProgressive$39/month
ToledoProgressive$43/month
AkronProgressive$42/month

Cheapest Car Insurance in Ohio by Profile

Here are the cheapest insurance companies in Ohio based on averaged sample rates for four driver profiles that included varied gender, age, driving history, credit, marital status, prior insurance, higher education, employment, and military service.

Cheap Car Insurance for Young Ohio Drivers Under 40

Finding affordable insurance for young drivers is difficult in Ohio. That’s why it’s a great idea to shop around and shop around often when you’re a young driver.

Pro-tip: when you use Insurify, you can set an alert for price drops. Never miss the chance to save money on car insurance again.

Insurance CompanyQuote
USAA$21/month
Auto-Owners$22/month
Erie$22/month
Buckeye Insurance Group$23/month
Frankenmuth Mutual$26/month

Cheap Car Insurance for Ohio Drivers with a Speeding Ticket

The more speeding tickets a driver receives, the higher the cost of insurance. If you’ve received a ticket (or two), your best bet for lowering car insurance rates is to keep a clean driving record because speeding tickets tend to stick around.

Insurance CompanyQuote
Erie$22/month
Buckeye Insurance Group$22/month
USAA$28/month

Cheap Car Insurance for Ohio Drivers with an At-Fault Accident

An at-fault accident can have lasting effects on your bottom line. Consider lowering your rates through a defensive driving course or other discount programs. And always be sure to compare your rates often.

Insurance CompanyQuote
Auto-Owners$26/month
Buckeye Insurance Group$26/month
Frankenmuth$26/month

Cheap Car Insurance for Ohio Drivers with a DUI

Driving under the influence can cost big even if you don’t get into an accident. It has one of the most significant effects on insurance prices. Drivers trying to save on insurance costs after a DUI might consider carrying only liability coverage. Dropping collision coverage or comprehensive coverage can save hundreds each year but is typically not an option for a financed vehicle.

Insurance CompanyQuote
Erie$34/month
Westfield$36/month
USAA$38/month

Ohio State Insurance Laws

Minimum requirements for coverage vary from state to state. Ohio is known for its middling average car insurance premiums and reasonable minimum liability limits, which means that affordable state minimum car insurance isn’t that hard to come by…if you know where to look.

State Minimum Car Insurance Coverage in Ohio

Liability insurance, comprised of bodily injury liability and property damage liability, is mandatory coverage for all drivers in the state of Ohio.

According to the Bureau of Motor Vehicles (BMV), proof of insurance must be carried in the vehicle and shown at traffic stops, vehicle inspections, and accident scenes. Minimum coverages for car insurance in the state of Ohio are:

  • $25,000 for bodily injury liability of one person 
  • $50,000 for bodily injury liability of two or more people
  • $25,000 for property damage liability in an accident

Ohioans are so invested in their residents purchasing liability insurance that its government has any driver applying for a driver’s license sign a document that affirms auto insurance coverage and knowledge of the penalties (see below) of driving uninsured.

Optional Supplemental Coverage

Comprehensive insurance will cover your vehicle after an “Acts of God” or an event out of your control, like a fire or flood, damages it. Comprehensive does not cover any damages that resulted from a collision.

Collision insurance covers damage to objects and vehicles as a result of a collision, regardless of fault. This type of coverage doesn’t cover damage due to “Acts of God.”

Medical Payments (or Med Pay) covers reasonable medical costs for you or your passengers in the case of injury from an accident. If a car accident results in serious bodily injury, Med Pay can help ease the stress of high medical bills after a hospital visit. Personal Injury Protection is even more comprehensive and will cover your lost wages as well as medical bills. Other optional coverages offered by Ohio car insurance companies include towing and labor, roadside assistance, gap coverage, and rental car reimbursement.

Uninsured Motorist Coverage in Ohio

Uninsured or underinsured motorist protection is not required in Ohio’s mandatory minimums. But that doesn’t mean you don’t need it. According to the Insurance Information Institute (III), an estimated 12.4 percent of drivers are driving uninsured in Ohio. (And anyone on the border with Indiana should know that the rates over there are even higher, at 16.7 percent.)

If an uninsured driver hits you, you may be able to sue them for damages, but they may not be able to pay. Carrying insurance to cover you in this situation means you’ll receive compensation for damages right away. And the auto insurance company will deal with the mess of covering that loss.

Which Insurance Companies Provide SR-22 Insurance in Ohio?

Also known as Financial Responsibility Insurance, drivers can be required to provide proof of insurance through filing an SR-22 through a few common scenarios in Illinois. These include:

  • DUI/DWI convictions
  • Driving without insurance
  • Driving with expired license plates
  • Multiple traffic offenses
  • Too many points on a driving record

Ohio insurance companies that will file an SR-22 on your behalf include Acceptance, Ameriprise Financial, Dairyland, Esurance, Farmers, Foremost, Founders, Frankenmuth, GEICO, Grange, Grinnell Mutual, Hallmark, Merchants, National General, Pekin, Progressive, SafeAuto, Safeco, State Auto, Stillwater, The General, Titan Insurance, and West Bend Mutual.

>> Compare cheap SR-22 insurance quotes now <<

Penalties for Driving Without Insurance in Ohio

One thing is clear: the Ohio BMV is not messing around.

Failure to show proof of insurance at a traffic stop or accident results in a Non-Compliance Suspension. The suspension stands until the driver pays a reinstatement fee of $90 and files an SR-22, which the driver must maintain for three years.

But that’s just the first offense. For a second offense within five years, drivers face a one-year suspension of driving privileges. Afterward, they must pay a reinstatement fee up to $500 and file an SR-22 for the next five years.

On a third offense in that same five-year period, drivers lose driving privileges for two years. Afterward, they will also need to pay a reinstatement fee and file an SR-22 for five years.

However, if a driver fails to show proof of insurance at the time of an accident or traffic stop, but does have an active insurance policy that meets insurance requirements, there’s hope. The driver can remove the suspension by presenting proof of an active policy on the day of the incident to the BMV. But the driver will still have to pay a reinstatement fee.

The Skinny on Random Selection in Ohio

As of July 3, 2019, the Ohio BMV no longer uses a random selection process to verify the minimum insurance coverage of vehicles registered in Ohio. 

Before this date, the BMV sent out requests of minimum insurance verification to owners of registered vehicles through a lottery process.

Any vehicle owner’s who received a selection suspension before July 3, 2019, must still comply with reinstatement requirements, including paying any fees.

Ohio DUI Laws

In the state of Ohio, the offense for driving under the influence is called an OVI, or Operating a Vehicle Impaired. Drivers are allowed up to 0.08 percent Blood Alcohol Content (BAC). Anything over that limit comes with stringent penalties. These include:

  • Minimum three days to a maximum of six months in jail
  • $375 to $1,075 paid in fines, not including other court costs
  • Driver’s license suspended a minimum of six months to a maximum of three years
  • Driver’s license reinstatement fee of $475
  • Possible ignition interlock requirements

If you’re underage in Ohio, the legal BAC limit is 0.02 percent, making even a small amount of alcohol in your system over the legal limit.

Can Undocumented Immigrants Obtain Driver’s Licenses in Ohio?

According to the National Conference of State Legislatures website, Ohio offers no driving privileges to unauthorized immigrants. However, Ohio does offer licenses to Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) status recipients.

Ohio Auto Insurance FAQs

Is car insurance required in Ohio?

The short answer is yes. The long answer: according to the Ohio Financial Responsibility Laws, there are some alternatives to carrying car insurance in Ohio. But for nearly everyone, these are not appealing options. Alternatives include:

  • Purchasing a bond either in the form of a surety bond, government bond in the amount of $30,000.
  • Posting collateral by obtaining a BMV bond secured by real estate. The real estate must have at least $60,000 in equity.
  • Submitting a BMV Certificate of Money to the Ohio Treasurer of State.
  • Filing a BMV Certificate of Self-Insurance (for companies and people owning more than 26 motor vehicles).

Of course, in the event of an at-fault accident, drivers with insurance alternatives will be personally responsible for the cost of damages. This can also include legal fees.

Is Ohio a no-fault state?

No, Ohio is an at-fault state. What’s the difference? In a state that uses no-fault rules, drivers involved in an accident report their bodily injury claims to their own insurance company—no matter who’s at fault. That means that even if a driver rear-ends you, you file your medical claim with your own insurance company.

In an at-fault state like Ohio, claims for the costs associated with personal injury are made on the at-fault driver’s insurance. There are also fewer restrictions in regards to suing the at-fault driver for pain and suffering. This may sound like a good thing, but if you’re the driver at fault, you’re vulnerable to financial ruin. Considering this risk, you may want to purchase coverage over the state-required minimums.

How do I get the cheapest car insurance in Ohio?

The best way to get the cheapest car insurance in Ohio is through comparison shopping. An easy way to do this is by using a car insurance comparison site like Insurify. This way, you only complete one form to receive your quotes. With Insurify, you will receive six to ten car insurance quotes.

Another way you can comparison shop is by completing a quote online or on the phone with each insurance company. This method often takes quite a bit of time.

Ohio BMV Information

Unlike in most states, it’s known as the Bureau of Motor Vehicles in Ohio, and it’s known to be fairly technologically advanced. Many forms can be filled out and submitted online, including:

  • Change of address
  • License verification
  • Reinstatement fees
  • Plate renewal, exchange, and replacement
  • Schedule a driving test or other appointment

Additionally, live chat is generally available Monday through Friday from 8 AM to 5 PM.

Registering Your Car When Moving to Ohio

You have 30 days from moving day to transfer your registration. You may or may not be able to use your previous state’s emissions testing when plating your vehicle. 

A few special considerations when moving to Ohio:

  • Due to lake effect weather, parts of Northern Ohio get some of the most snow in the country. And all of Ohio experiences below-freezing winters with occasional extreme weather. As such, snowy conditions and black ice are regular occurrences in the winter there.
  • Some regions experience flooding. If you are unfamiliar with flood risks, do your research. Flood insurance may be an essential choice for you and your family.
  • Ohio experiences thunderstorms and tornadoes. Because of this, hail damage is typical in many parts of the state. Purchasing comprehensive coverage can help cover you. You can also lower your risk by parking your car in a garage or other shelter.

Conclusion: The best way to get cheap car insurance in Ohio

No matter what: comparison shop.

Wherever you live in the Buckeye State, it’s a great idea to comparison shop for quotes when purchasing your policy and at least once before every policy renewal.

Using Insurify to compare auto insurance quotes, unlock discounts, and build your dream policy with just a few clicks can help you save big time…without taking up an entire weekend.

That means more time for football and Cincinnati chili.

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J.J. Starr is a financial copywriter and enjoys helping readers find the information they need. In addition to her background in banking and financial advising, she is also a poet with an MFA from New York University. She lives in Amherst, Massachusetts. You can learn more at jjstarrwrites.com.