Car insurance rates are going up in Georgia and you can blame our horrible traffic and distracted drivers for it.

“We’re seeing more moderate increases in the 4-5 percent range this year, but it was probably around 10-12 percent increases in the past few years,” said Steve Manders with Georgia’s Office of Insurance and Safety Fire Commissioner.

Higher accident rates and distracted driving are leading car companies to up their prices.

The Office of Insurance and Safety Fire Commissioner’s job is to keep on top of insurance companies and their rates. Each company has to file a notice telling the Insurance Commissioner it plans on raising, or reducing, rates. The Insurance Commissioner then examines their reasoning and approves the rate changes.

Manders said this year’s increases are relatively moderate, citing Allstate which raised rates 25 percent a few years ago.

“Companies telling us there’s a leveling off of frequency of accidents lately,” said Manders. “It was at a steady increase for three to four years.”

Georgia’s new hands-free law may be cutting down on distracted driving accidents.

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“We’re hopefully to the end of the tunnel,” said Manders.

Sometimes, but not often, insurance companies do file to reduce their rates as Allstate did a couple of years ago. They had a 2 percent decrease.

There are tips that could help you reduce your insurance rates:

  • Shop around – Call several insurance companies for quotes
  • Use public transit/drive less – There are tiers for car insurance so the less you drive each day, the less you pay.
  • Consider reducing your deductibles and coverage

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