July 31, 2018 by Jason Contant
Ontario’s premium rates are rising the fastest among Canada’s private passenger auto insurance regimes, according to the Q2 2018 Auto Insurance Price Index from LowestRates.ca.
A measure of only private passenger auto insurance regimes in Canada, the index from the online rate comparison site uses proprietary data to track the average cost of car insurance on a quarterly basis. It noted the following quarter-over-quarter auto insurance premium price increases:
What’s behind the rate increases?
A higher number of distracted driving accidents, the rising cost of new vehicle repairs and fraud, says LowestRates.ca.
Annually, compared with this time last year, Alberta saw the steepest rate increase, at 8.29%, while Ontario saw an increase of 0.67%. LowestRates’s annual data for Atlantic Canada is not yet available.
The index tracks the percentage change in the average quote requested for car insurance by individual drivers residing in the three regions, insuring only one vehicle.
Despite the rising auto insurance prices, LowestRates.ca found that 37% of Canadians who have auto insurance in the polled regions “did not spend any time” researching and comparing rates before purchasing a plan.
Baby Boomers (42%) and women (38%) were most likely not to compare rates. In Alberta, 32% of Albertans polled said they did not compare rates before locking in. Thirty-six per cent of Canadians living in Atlantic Canada did no comparison shopping.
Justin Thouin, co-founder and CEO of LowestRates.ca, said the latest auto insurance price index “makes clear what I’m sure a lot of Canadians assumed: car insurance rates are increasing across the country. This makes it all the more important that consumers utilize the full gamut of resources available to find the rate that works best for them. Unfortunately, we know that over a third of the country is not doing that, and as a result, are likely paying more than they need to for their auto insurance.”
Both men and women are feeling the increases year-over-year:
The index works by looking at the lowest auto insurance quotes available on LowestRates.ca each quarter and comparing those rates to the hundreds of thousands of quotes processed by the website.
While the average quoted price on LowestRates.ca rose 0.67% in the second quarter, that was less than the amount insurers were approved to raise rates. The Financial Services Commission of Ontario, which regulates auto insurance rates in Ontario, approved insurance providers for an average 1.11% rate increase in Q2.