Car insurance Sault Ste. Marie, ON

Part of a series on car insurance rates in Ontario.

Fast facts about auto insurance in Sault Ste. Marie

Average annual car insurance rate

Regular drivers in the city

Collisions per year (approximately)


Collision rate for the city

Average age

Average household income


Unemployment rate


Understanding car insurance in Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario

Sault Ste. Marie sits on the lower-middle end of the spectrum for car insurance rates in Ontario.

It has a lot going for it here: since it’s not a bedroom community for larger cities, people don’t need to spend much time driving to and from work. This cuts down on every driver’s exposure to risk on the road, which in turn lowers the average car insurance premiums (all else being equal).

It also cuts down on traffic just passing through. People aren’t as likely to speed through neighbourhoods where their own kids walk to school.

Having said that, Sault Ste. Marie does have a collision rate on the higher end of the spectrum. This might have to do with severe winters, but it also has to do with personal driving history. Investing in winter tires and driver education goes a long way, in this case.

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Get your bundle on & save!

Want even cheaper insurance? Save up to 50% on home and up to 18% on car insurance when you bundle them.

Busting myths about driving and insurance in Sault Ste. Marie

Myth: Sault Ste. Marie isn’t a safe place to live.

Not true. While the city’s overall crime severity index is on the upper-middle end of the spectrum in Ontario, it’s not even in the same league as Canada’s most dangerous places. Those places have crime severity indices between 132 and 353. Sault Ste. Marie is safer than many places throughout Canada, all things considered.

Myth: Bayview and Jamestown neighbourhoods aren’t suitable for kids.

That’s not true. Even if these neighbourhoods carry local reputations, these things can differ from street to street (from an actuarial perspective), and those conditions can change whenever people move in or out of a given residence. Move away from streets where there are frequent problems if you’re going to move anyway, but don’t stress out about entire neighbourhoods harming your car insurance rate.

Myth: Sault Ste. Marie is isolated from the rest of Canada.

Nope. Sault Ste. Marie is a major railway stop, making it an important location for nation-wide trade. It’s also a 10-minute hop across the bridge to Michigan, which has some great tourist attractions in its own right. The city also has an international airport that can take you to just about anywhere in Canada in short order.

Myth: The shared border with the United States causes a lot of trouble.

It’s not really what people from out of town think. Traffic and travel increase the sheer number of people in a given area, and that can raise the amount of crime in any part of the world. The border with the United States brings in a good amount of tourism money and cross-border trade. It also lets those of us living in the Soo to travel south for shopping and some classic tourist destinations on the other side.

How Sault Ste. Marie’s rates compare to other cities in Ontario

  • North York: $4,261
  • Etobicoke: $4,199
  • Brampton: $4,071
  • Scarborough: $3,825
  • East York: $3,605
  • Woodbridge: $3,603
  • Richmond Hill: $3,579
  • Mississauga: $3,473
  • Markham: $3,389
  • Niagara Falls: $3,321
  • Bowmanville: $3,308
  • Peterborough: $3,259
  • Pickering: $ 3,245
  • Newmarket: $ 3,216
  • Hamilton: $3,201
  • Brantford: $ 3,158
  • Maple: $3,150
  • Whitby: $3,087
  • Ajax: $3,053
  • York: $2,999
  • Toronto: $2,983
  • Barrie: $2,924
  • Thornhill: $2,871
  • Waterloo: $2,867
  • Caledon: $2,780
  • London: $2,765
  • Fort Erie: $2,720
  • Oakville: $2,720
  • Sault Ste Marie: $ 2,713
  • Kitchener: $2,705
  • Milton: $2,680
  • St Catharines: $ 2,550
  • Windsor: $2,536
  • Woodstock: $2,513
  • Innisfil: $2,505
  • Burlington: $2,476
  • Kingston: $ 2,360
  • Cambridge: $2,297
  • Oshawa: $2,295
  • Guelph: $2,268
  • Gloucester: $2,256
  • Stoney Creek: $2,222
  • Nepean: $2,196
  • Ottawa: $2,195
  • Sudbury: $2,005
  • Kanata: $2,002
  • Thunder Bay: $1,973
  • Wasaga Beach: $1,958

Quick tips on insurance and driving in Sault Ste. Marie

Avoid the intersection at Albert and Gore whenever humanly possible.

In 2016 Gore Street got a bit of a makeover. The thought was to improve the flow of traffic between Wellington Street and Queen Street with crosswalks and some additional parking spaces.

The change also included removing the traffic lights at the intersection of Gore and Albert. This hasn’t improved traffic, and police initiatives show that the intersection remains dangerous years after the change was made.

Protect yourself, your car, and your car insurance rates by avoiding this intersection whenever possible. Seriously.

Avoid neighbourhoods with higher rates of reported crimes.

Areas with more reports of break-ins, property damage, or theft can have a negative effect on car insurance rates for everyone in the area.

While the idea of “bad neighbourhoods” can carry unfair stigmas, inurance policies are underwritten with statistical (actuarial) science that takes those things into account. Try northern or eastern neighbourhoods, or anything around the college.

Snow tires aren’t really optional for Sault Ste. Marie’s winters.

Being farther north means that the city gets pretty cold in the winter. Snowfall can get pretty high, and you won’t always be able to rely on public transit to get around when it comes.

That’s why you really, really need snow tires. They work well in temperatures under 7 degrees Celsius, grip snow and ice better than all-seasons, and—as an added bonus—it earns you a modest insurance discount in Ontario.

Sources for fast facts about Sault Ste. Marie:

  • Statistics Canada, Sault Ste. Marie 2016 Census Profile
  • Ministry of Transportation, 2016 Road Safety Report
  • Sault Online, “The most dangerous intersection downtown?”
  • Sault Online, “Gore Street Crash Caught On Camera”
  • Soo Today, “Sault Police traffic clampdown shows increase in intersection accidents, trailer offences”
  • Maclean’s, “Canada’s Most Dangerous Places 2018”
  • Welcome to SSM, “Top 10 Reasons to Move to Sault Ste. Marie”

Source for average insurance rates by city:

  • Survey of 2,800 auto insurance policy holders in Ontario

Google Rating: 4.8

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