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Unhappy Mature Male Driver With Damaged Car After Accident Calling Insurance Company On Mobile Phone

Non-Owners Car Insurance

Non-owners insurance is smart for those who need coverage but don’t have cars. Learn who needs this auto insurance, what it covers, and its average costs.

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09/10/2023 07:23 PM

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Those who don’t own cars typically have no reason to purchase auto insurance. You don’t need non-owners insurance to borrow a friend’s car–except for in a few cases. In this article, we’ll explain when you may need to purchase non-owners insurance coverage.

If you’re regularly on the road despite not owning a vehicle, you might be a prime candidate for a non-owners insurance policy. We’ve reviewed the best car insurance companies, so we’ll give you the top picks that could suit your budget and coverage needs.

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What Is Non-Owner Car Insurance?

Non-owners insurance is designed for drivers who don’t own cars but may need car insurance anyway. This policy type is considered secondary coverage, meaning that it supplements the insurance policy attached to whichever vehicle you’re driving.

For example, if you borrow a friend’s car, that person’s auto policy will kick in first to pay for damages, but your non-owner car insurance policy may cover any costs that are not met by the original insurer.

What Does Non-Owner Car Insurance Cover?

Keep in mind that a non-owner auto insurance policy will probably not provide the same level of coverage as a standard policy. Non-owners insurance will typically only include bodily injury and property damage liability protection. These types of insurance cover damages to other parties and their property after an accident for which you are at fault.

Non-owners insurance plans typically exclude full coverage pieces such as:

  • Comprehensive insurance
  • Collision insurance
  • Uninsured motorist coverage
  • Towing services
  • Rental car insurance

Other types that you’ll run into only in certain states include medical payments coverage and personal injury protection for your medical bills. You’ll likely receive an extremely limited non-owner insurance policy, but expect to be pleasantly surprised to see how much car insurance is when you’re a non-owner.

Do I Need Non-Owner Car Insurance?

Not every driver without a vehicle needs a non-owners insurance policy. Below are situations in which you may want to consider such car insurance coverage:

Situation Why You May Need Non-Owners Insurance
You need an SR-22 or FR-44. In many states, you’ll need to provide proof of insurance if your driver’s license is suspended for a DUI or if you lack insurance coverage on your driving history. Non-owners insurance can help drivers reach the required FR-44 or SR-22 form needed to reinstate their licenses if they don’t have cars.
You rent cars frequently. Most car rental companies offer insurance policies. However, if you frequently rent cars, it may be cheaper to provide your own liability coverage with a non-owners insurance policy.
You borrow cars frequently, but not the same car every time. If you regularly borrow the same car, you should be listed on the owner’s insurance policy, especially if you live in the same household. If you often borrow cars from multiple people, it may be a good idea to purchase your own non-owners insurance policy.
You are a business owner, and an employee uses a personal vehicle for business-related purposes. Personal auto insurance does not cover vehicles that are used for business purposes. A non-owners insurance policy can provide liability coverage for these instances.
You are between cars for an extended period of time. Going without insurance coverage for a long period of time, also known as a lapse in coverage, can mean higher rates when you finally buy insurance again. Non-owners insurance is a good idea if you currently don’t have your own car but need to maintain continuous coverage.
You use a car-sharing service. When using a car-sharing service such as Zipcar, you may be required to purchase non-owner coverage.

Drivers Who Don’t Need Non-Owners Insurance

Non-owners insurance isn’t right for every driver. In the following situations, you may not need this type of coverage.

Situation Why You May Not Need Non-Owners Insurance
You borrow a friend’s car temporarily. Most auto policies cover drivers who have the owner’s permission to drive their car as long as that person does not regularly use the vehicle.
You own a car. If you own a car, you should purchase a standard auto insurance policy for that vehicle.
You have a company car. Company cars should be covered by standard auto insurance policies.
You rent a car. You do not need non-owners insurance if you only plan to rent cars infrequently. It will be cheaper to use the coverage provided by the rental agency.
You live with a person whose car you regularly borrow. If you live with a person whose car you regularly borrow, you should be listed on that person’s auto policy.
You want a policy that covers damages to the car you’re driving. Non-owners insurance does not provide comprehensive or collision coverage.

Non-Owner Car Insurance Cost

Non-owners car insurance is usually one of the cheapest car insurance types available.  After all, your auto insurance policy will likely be slim, and you probably won’t be using the vehicle as often as a full-time owner.

Non-owner car insurance costs vary considerably, though. They’re generally based on the same factors that determine rates for traditional auto insurance, such as:

  • Age
  • Gender
  • Location
  • Driving record
  • Marital status
  • Homeowner status
  • Credit score
  • Deductible amount
  • Coverage limits

Non-Owner Car Insurance Quote

The only way to determine exactly how much a non-owner insurance policy could cost is by comparing free and personalized car insurance quotes from providers.

Companies That Offer Non-Owners Insurance

Most major insurance providers offer non-owners car insurance policies. Companies that will be able to provide you with this type of auto insurance include:

While most insurance companies offer non-owners insurance, it’s difficult to find policy information on many websites. Reach out to your chosen provider to learn more details about its coverage options.

Non-Owner Car Insurance: Conclusion

In this review, we went over the cost, companies and eligibility of non-owner car insurance.

Below are some our picks for the best non-owner car insurance companies:

Our Recommendations For Non-Owners Insurance

If you’re looking for a cost-effective non-owners insurance policy, compare auto insurance quotes from providers before making a final decision. Two well-regarded companies that offer extensive non-owners insurance policies are Geico and Progressive.

Geico: Best Overall Provider

Geico is a standout choice for auto insurance, earning 5.0 out of 5.0 stars overall in our review of the best auto insurers. Geico offers a wide array of coverage options, an A++ financial stability rating from AM Best, and an A+ rating for customer service from the Better Business Bureau (BBB). Many drivers report finding their cheapest car insurance premiums through Geico.

Geico offers standard coverage options as well as non-owner insurance policies. Contact an insurance agent or visit the Geico website for additional details, or read up on the provider in our full Geico insurance review.

Progressive: Best Usage-Based Insurance

Progressive also offers non-owners insurance and may be especially appealing due to its discounts for high-risk drivers such as teens and older adults. Cost research indicates that drivers with DUIs and speeding tickets often find better rates from Progressive as well.

Progressive offers several types of car insurance with high-limit policies. The company holds an A+ financial strength rating from AM Best, is available across the country, and receives positive Progressive insurance reviews.

If you’re trying to decide on Geico vs. Progressive non-owners insurance policies, gain more clarity from our complete provider comparison.

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Non-Owners Insurance: FAQ

Below are some frequently asked questions about non-owner car insurance:

What is non-owners insurance?

Non-owner’s insurance is a supplementary insurance policy intended for those who do not own vehicles but frequently rent or borrow them. Non-owners car insurance usually covers property damage and personal injury liability expenses.

Can you get insurance without being the owner?

You cannot purchase car insurance for a vehicle that you do not own. However, you can buy a non-owners insurance policy, which can help pay for liability damages if you are involved in an accident in any vehicle.

What happens if someone wrecks your car and they aren’t on your insurance?

Your insurance policy covers any drivers that use your vehicle, including non-listed persons you let borrow your car. However, if you have a child or roommate who frequently drives your car, have them listed on your policy. Failing to list such a person on your policy can lead to a claim denial or cancellation of coverage.

Can my child drive my car if they are not insured?

Insurance applies to vehicles and not to specific drivers. However, if your child has a license, you will need to list them on your insurance policy. Your insurer could cancel your coverage or deny a claim should you fail to list any licensed children on your policy (if they live with you).

Our Methodology

Because consumers rely on us to provide objective and accurate information, we created a comprehensive rating system to formulate our rankings of the best car insurance companies. We collected data on dozens of auto insurance providers to grade the companies on a wide range of ranking factors. The end result was an overall rating for each provider, with the insurers that scored the most points topping the list.

Here are the factors our ratings take into account:

  • Reputation: Our research team considered market share, ratings from industry experts and years in business when giving this score.
  • Availability: Auto insurance companies with greater state availability and few eligibility requirements scored highest in this category.
  • Coverage: Companies that offer a variety of choices for insurance coverage are more likely to meet consumer needs.
  • Cost: Average auto insurance rates and discount opportunities were both taken into consideration.
  • Customer Experience: This score is based on volume of complaints reported by the NAIC and customer satisfaction ratings reported by J.D. Power. We also considered the responsiveness, friendliness and helpfulness of each insurance company’s customer service team based on our own shopper analysis.

*Data accurate at time of publication.