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Nationwide vs. State Farm: Which Car Insurance Is Cheaper?

Enter your zip code below to view companies that have cheap auto insurance rates.

Jeffrey Johnson graduated summa cum laude from the University of Baltimore School of Law and has worked in legal offices and nonprofits in Maryland, Texas, and North Carolina. He has also earned an MFA in screenwriting from Chapman University and worked in film, education, and publishing. His professional writing has appeared on sites like The Manifest and Vice, and he is the author of a novel ...

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UPDATED: Jun 7, 2021

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Key Takeaways

  • Both Nationwide and State Farm have financial stability, high customer satisfaction, and low complaint ratios
  • With the exception of younger drivers, men and women pay roughly the same rates with State Farm
  • If you have bad credit, you will pay nearly $1,000 less by choosing Nationwide rather than State Farm
  • If you have a DUI on your record, you can save nearly $1,000 by choosing State Farm rather than Nationwide

You have a lot of choices when it comes to auto insurance companies, and comparing them side by side can help you narrow down your options.

In this guide, we’ll look at the pros and cons of Nationwide vs. State Farm car insurance companies.

Which company will provide the best and cheapest car insurance for you? We’ll compare rates, discounts, financial ratings, and customer satisfaction ratings to help you answer that question.

Before jumping into this Nationwide vs. State Farm car insurance review, enter your ZIP code to compare multiple companies in your area.

Is Nationwide or State Farm car insurance cheaper based on age?

Generally speaking, the more experience driving we have, the better drivers we become. This is why car insurance companies take your age into consideration when setting your rates.

Some states also allow car insurance companies to factor your gender and/or marital status into your rates, though this practice has been banned in some places.

Nationwide vs. State Farm Average Annual Car Insurance Rates by Age, Gender, and Marital Status
Age, Gender, and Marital StatusNationwide Average Annual RatesState Farm Average Annual Rates
Single 17-year-old female$5,756$5,954
Single 17-year-old male$7,175$7,324
Single 25-year-old female$2,686$2,336
Single 25-year-old male$2,889$2,555
Married 35-year-old female$2,360$2,082
Married 35-year-old male$2,387$2,082
Married 60-year-old female$2,130$1,874
Married 60-year-old male$2,215$1,874
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For those 25 and older, State Farm car insurance rates are an average of 13% cheaper than Nationwide car insurance rates.

Both Nationwide and State Farm are a good choice if you have a teen driver. Rates for teen drivers average about the same for both companies.

Interestingly, with State Farm, men and women over the age of 35 pay roughly the same rates. This is uncommon, as many car insurance companies charge men higher rates than women.

Is Nationwide or State Farm car insurance cheaper based on driving record?

Speeding tickets, accidents, DUIs, and other traffic violations will increase your Nationwide and State Farm car insurance rates. Take a look at the table below to see how much.

Nationwide vs. State Farm Average Annual Car Insurance Rates by Driving Record
InfractionNationwide Average Annual RatesState Farm Average Annual Rates
Clean record$2,746$2,821
With one speeding violation$3,114$3,186
With one accident$3,397$3,396
With one DUI$4,543$3,637
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Nationwide and State Farm’s car insurance rates are roughly the same for drivers with a speeding ticket or accident on their record.

If you currently have a DUI on your driving record, State Farm is the best choice. You can save nearly $1,000 per year by choosing State Farm over Nationwide if you’ve gotten a DUI.

As for current customers, Nationwide and State Farm increase rates about the same amount for getting a speeding ticket or causing an accident.

However, again, State Farm is more lenient on drivers that get a DUI.

Is Nationwide or State Farm car insurance cheaper based on credit score?

Just like gender and marital status, states have begun outlawing car insurance rates based on credit scores.

Your credit score is a strong reflection of your consistency with paying your bills, but insurance companies assume that those with higher credit scores are better drivers. Some believe this practice is discriminatory.

Nationwide vs. State Farm Average Annual Car Insurance Rates by Credit History
Credit ScoreNationwide Average Annual RatesState Farm Average Annual Rates
Good Credit (670-739)$2,926$2,174
Fair Credit Score (580-669)$3,255$2,853
Poor Credit Score (300-579)$4,083$4,951
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State Farm is a better choice if you currently have good or fair credit. But if you currently have bad credit, Nationwide will give you cheaper rates.

If you choose Nationwide and you currently have good or fair credit, expect to pay between $500 and $800 more on your car insurance.

Also worth noting: if you choose State Farm insurance, your car insurance rates will double if your credit score tanks.

With Nationwide, your car insurance rates will increase by only 40% if you experience financial hardship and your credit score drops.

You may live in a state, such as California or Michigan, where basing car insurance on credit score is illegal. Check out our car insurance by state page before judging Nationwide vs. State Farm car insurance rates based on credit score alone.

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Does Nationwide or State Farm have better car insurance discounts?

You shouldn’t take affordable Nationwide vs. State Farm car insurance quotes at face value — not until you look at the company’s discounts.

Each company has its selling points, and sometimes that comes down to who has the best discount that applies to your specific situation.

Nationwide vs. State Farm Car Insurance Discounts
DiscountsNationwide Discounts (Percentage)State Farm Discounts (Percentage)
Anti-lock Brakes55
Anti-Theft2515
Claim Free1015
Daytime Running Lights5N/A
Defensive Driver55
Distant Student10N/A
Driver's EdN/A15
Driving Device/App4050
Early Signing8N/A
Family Plan25N/A
Further Education15N/A
Good Student1025
Homeowner53
Low MileageN/A30
Loyalty5N/A
Membership/Group7N/A
Multiple Policies1017
Multiple Vehicles2020
Newer VehicleN/A40
Occupation15N/A
Paperless Documents5N/A
Paperless/Auto Billing302
Passive Restraint2040
Safe Driver3515
Students & Alumni7N/A
Vehicle Recovery255
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When reviewing discounts offered by both companies, Nationwide has 23 car insurance discounts, and State Farm has only 16 discounts.

State Farm’s best car insurance discounts range from 25% to 50% for having multiple vehicles on your policy, being a good student, having low mileage, driving a newer vehicle, and having airbags.

You can also save 50% by participating in State Farm’s usage-based car insurance program.

Nationwide’s best car insurance discounts range from 20% to 40% for having anti-theft and vehicle recovery systems in your car, having a family plan, being a safe driver, and using paperless billing and autopay.

You can also save 40% by participating in Nationwide’s usage-based car insurance program.

With the exception of the discount for using the driving app or driving device, Nationwide offers heftier discounts compared to State Farm.

Be sure to look into other discounts and programs such as State Farm or Nationwide roadside assistance.

Some companies offer accident forgiveness, so before you file a Nationwide or State Farm claim, ask the Nationwide or State Farm claims department about this.

What types of auto insurance coverages are offered by Nationwide and State Farm?

Since Nationwide and State Farm are two of the companies that hold the majority of the market share, they will offer many different types of coverages, including the basic six below:

  • Liability auto insurance coverage (bodily injury and property damage)
  • Comprehensive auto insurance coverage
  • Collision auto insurance coverage
  • Uninsured/underinsured auto insurance coverage
  • Medical payments (MedPay) auto insurance coverage (particularly important in states that require no-fault auto insurance)
  • Personal injury protection (PIP) auto insurance coverage

Other optional coverages may include rental reimbursement, roadside assistance, guaranteed auto protection (GAP), mechanical breakdown, and insurance for recreational vehicles such as ATVs or boats.

Be sure to check out Nationwide pet insurance and Nationwide retirement services when reviewing your coverage options.

Does Nationwide or State Farm have better car insurance mobile apps?

Most of the top 10 car insurance companies have mobile apps to access policy information and/or make payments and a separate mobile app that tracks your driving habits (usage-based car insurance).

If you notice your rates have gone up when it’s time to renew your six-month policy, it could be because your credit score dropped.

Use your Nationwide insurance login or State Farm login to temporarily change your coverage levels and deductibles to lower your rates while you start improving your credit score.

If you don’t notice a change in your credit score and your rates still go up, it may be a good time to get quotes from other insurance providers.

How does Nationwide and State Farm car insurance compare in financial strength and customer satisfaction?

Reviewing ratings from three different agencies will provide you with a good picture of how a car insurance company works with its customers, handles complaints, and manages its finances.

A.M. Best scores companies based on their ability to meet their ongoing insurance obligations, such as balancing premiums collected and claims paid. The highest score A.M. Best awards is Superior A++.

Consumer Reports collects annual data from its subscribers regarding customer satisfaction of the claims process, step by step. In its 2017 survey, 27 insurance companies were rated, and scores ranged from 86 to 96.

The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) calculates a complaint ratio based on the total number of customers vs. the total number of complaints.

In 2017, the national average complaint ratio was one. The lower the ratio, the better.

So, should you buy Nationwide car insurance or State Farm car insurance? Check out the table below.

Nationwide vs. State Farm Company Ratings
Rating AgencyNationwideState Farm
AM Best RatingA+A++
Consumer Reports8889
NAIC Company Complaint Ratio0.280.44
NAIC Total Complaints251482
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Nationwide and State Farm are highly competitive based on ratings from financial, consumer, and government agencies. State Farm car insurance quotes and Nationwide car insurance quotes are comparable.

Now that you’ve compared Nationwide vs. State Farm car insurance, enter your ZIP code to see quotes from multiple car insurance companies in your area.

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Enter your zip code below to view companies that have cheap auto insurance rates.

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