If you're planning to buy a new car, you might want to compare insurance costs first. If you have an old car now, your insurance costs might jump quite a bit if you switch to a new car. Here's a look at some things that affect the cost of an auto insurance policy. 

1. Your Credit Score

You may not realize it, but if you have a low credit score, you may pay more for your insurance. If your credit is poor, you're a higher risk for an insurance company since you may struggle to keep up with your car payments.

Also, if you miss payments and get your insurance canceled because of it, you may have a hard time getting insurance again, and if you do, it could cost more than if you have good credit and no lapse in coverage.

2. Your State Of Residence

The state you live in affects how much you'll pay for car insurance. You can't do much about where you live unless you're planning to move soon. Once you move, you may want to switch insurance companies or talk to your agent about dropping your rate to be in accordance with your new state. The cost of insurance varies by state since states have different driving conditions and weather.

Some states allow insurance companies to vary rates by zip code. If that's the case, you might pay more if you live in a high-crime area or an area with congested city traffic. Moving to a different zip code might lower your insurance rate, so it's worth looking into when you have to pay for auto insurance for multiple drivers.

3. Your Personal Details

Your age and marital status affect how much your auto insurance costs. Married people might pay less than single people, so be sure to let your agent know your status to see if it affects your rate. Gender matters too, but that is correlated with age. Young males tend to pay more for car insurance while older females may pay more than older males.

There isn't anything you can do to change your personal details, so you may want to focus on things you can change instead. Just be aware to let your agent know if your personal details change so you can have your insurance cost adjusted.

Fortunately, there are things you can change to control your auto insurance costs. You can change the amount of insurance you carry, you can increase the deductible, you might take a defensive driving course, you can avoid buying a sporty or luxury car, you can be a careful driver so you keep points off of your license, and you can cut your commute time down to lower your yearly miles driven.