Albertans are paying more for auto insurance than much of Canada, according to a new report. (File photo by The Canadian Press)

Albertans are paying more for auto insurance than much of Canada, according to a new report. (File photo by The Canadian Press)

Red Deer auto insurance rates among highest in Canada: report

City has highest sampled rate for three of 30 customer profiles

A new report shows Red Deerians and Albertans are paying more for auto insurance than much of Canada.

The Insurance Corporation of British Columbia (ICBC) engaged Ernst and Young LLP (EY) to conduct a comparison of automobile insurance rates across Canada for a specified set of 30 customer profiles.

These profiles varied based on criteria such as the number of drivers, as well as the driver’s gender, age, marital status, employment status, license held, history of automobile insurance claims, history of automobile convictions, distance of commute to work/school, annual kilometres driven, and vehicle year, make and model.

Four Alberta locations were sampled as part of the report: Red Deer, Edmonton, Calgary and Grande Prairie. Five municipalities were sampled in British Columbia, two in Saskatchewan, four in Manitoba, five in Ontario, four in New Brunswick, four in Nova Scotia, two in Prince Edwards Island and three in Newfoundland. Data for Quebec was not included.

Red Deer is in the 10 top for highest sampled rates for 27 of the 30 customer profiles – provincial information was not available for the other three. “For certain customer profiles, online quotes were not available for all cities sampled,” according to the report.

There are three profiles where Red Deer has the highest sampled rate across the country:

  • Single operator: A 45-year-old employed male who is married/common law and has been licensed for 29 years, currently with a full licence. The individual drives a 2018 Ford F150 XLT Supercrew. They are claim and conviction free. Their commute is 100 kilometres, with 30,000 annual kilometres driven.
  • Single operator: A 45-year-old employed female who is married/common law and has been licensed for 29 years, currently with a full licence. The individual drives a 2018 Ford F150 XLT Supercrew. They are claim and conviction free. Their commute is 100 kilomtres, with 30,000 annual kilometres driven.
  • Multiple operators: 31-year-old female and 30-year-old male who are married/common law. They are both fully licensed, with the female being licensed for 15 years and the male for 14 years. The vehicle is a 2017 Toyota Tacoma V6 Double Cab. The female has an accident on record from March 2022, while the male is claim and conviction free. Their commute is 10 kilometres, with with 20,000 annual kilometres driven.

The first profile listed above would pay $3,101, while the second profile would pay $2,972 in Red Deer. The lowest sampled rate for these customer profiles is in Nanaimo, B.C., where these individuals would both pay $1,032.

Meanwhile, the third profile’s sampled rate is $4,405 in Red Deer. The sampled rate for this profile is also in Nanaimo, B.C., where they would be paying $1,350.

“Albertans are getting gouged as they struggle to keep their car on the road and food on their table in the middle of an affordability crisis,” said NDP Finance Critic Shannon Phillips.

“They’re paying thousands of dollars more per year than other provinces for the same level of insurance. This is highway robbery, but rather than addressing it, the UCP is allowing big insurance companies to charge as much as they want,”

In 2019, the UCP opted to terminated an NDP installed cap on insurances rates. The NDP says as a result, premiums increased as much as 30 per cent for some drivers even as they drove less during the pandemic.

Alberta’s largest automobile insurer, Intact Insurance Company, alone brought in $911 million in premiums, while paying out just $467 million in claims.

“These increases need to stop. We need a government that will help Alberta drivers, not their friends in the insurance industry. An NDP government will implement a freeze on insurance rates and provide real relief for Albertans,” said Phillips.

According to the latest Superintendent of Insurance Annual Report, Alberta auto insurance companies collected $2.45 billion more in premiums than they paid out in claims in 2021, an 86 per cent increase in their margins year-over-year. This equates to $777 per vehicle, based on Statistics Canada’s estimate of 3.15 million consumer vehicle registrations in Alberta.



sean.mcintosh@reddeeradvocate.com

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