One thing you might scratch your head over is how affordable auto insurance is here on the Central Coast when most everything else is more expensive. Carl emailed me and asked, “Dear Jon, the cost of living is so expensive on the Central Coast, but why is auto insurance less expensive here?” 

It's true, the cost of housing and many other items are more expensive here on the Central Coast. A recent study by Wallethub.com compared auto insurance prices in the State of California and the findings confirm that auto insurance on the Central Coast is some of the lowest in the state.

Here are the cities with the lowest premiums as compared to the rest of the state; No. 1 on the cheapest list is Santa Maria-it’s over 20 percent cheaper than the rest of the state. Then comes Chico, Santa Barbara, Livermore, Redding, Ventura and Salinas at No. 7 on the cheapest list.

Here are cities with the highest premiums for auto insurance; Glendale is at No. 1 and is over 43 percent higher than the state average. Then comes Los Angeles, Inglewood, Santa Monica and Burbank. This list's highest premiums seems logical for the larger cities in metropolitan areas of California.

Interestingly Monterey, Santa Cruz and San Benito counties are among the top 20 lowest counties for auto insurance in the state, with an average below $1,100 a year.

But why is the Central Coast lower than the state average?

Experts tell me there are five main factors that insurers use in figuring rates. They are how many accidents are in an area, the risk of getting into an accident, auto thefts, the cost of repair and the potential for lawsuits. After these factors, insurers look at your driving record to determine your rate.

So for now, be glad there is one item on your budget that you pay less for, because you live on the Central Coast.

If you would like to see the entire study, look for the link at the bottom of Wallethub.com's home page.

If you have a question for me, email me at DearJon@KIONRightNow.com. You can also follow me on Facebook at “JonKBrent KION” or Twitter at “DearJonKBrent.”