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How Much Does Life Insurance Cost?

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You’re considering life insurance because you care about the people you love. When you die, you know that life insurance will provide them with the money they need to help live the lives you hoped they’d lead.

Of course, life insurance comes with a price tag.

When you know the cost of life insurance, you can begin to make informed decisions about the type of life insurance to buy and how much you can afford.

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The Hard Fact

One day, each of us will die. It’s why life insurance is so important to the people who depend on our incomes.

One of the main ways insurance companies figure out the cost of life insurance is by estimating the rate at which people die. This is known as “mortality.” There’s a predictable mortality pattern based on age and health factors; calculations are based on this pattern. This is part of a process known as underwriting life insurance.


What Do My Age and Health Have to Do With It?

Plenty! In general, the younger and healthier you are, the less you’ll pay for your life insurance policy. As we age, there’s more risk that we’ll become ill or, quite frankly, die. Good health also includes being a healthy weight—another incentive for many of us to get or stay fit.

If you are in your younger years, consider purchasing a life insurance policy now, instead of postponing it. It could save you money. And if you’re healthy now, consider the possibility of getting a disease later on that could increase the amount you have to pay for life insurance, known as premiums, even more—or even make you uninsurable—later in life.


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Additional Risks That Can Impact the Cost of Your Policy

The more a life insurance company knows about you, the more accurate it can be when pricing your policy. Several other factors, in addition to age and health, are taken into consideration when underwriting life insurance, too. These can include, among others:

  • Tobacco use.

    It’s not good for your health and will probably increase the cost of your life insurance.
  • Conditions or diseases.

    Certain cancers, heart disease, and high blood pressure or cholesterol, if not managed, can increase premiums. In some cases, they may leave you uninsurable.
  • Driving violations.

    An insurance company may look at your driving record to help get a full picture of you and your behaviors. Speeding habits can be considered risky.
  • Risky hobbies.

    Activities like motorized vehicle racing and mountain climbing may be considered risky. There are some hobbies that may make it difficult to get life insurance at all, like BASE jumping, for example.
  • Risky jobs.

    People like aircraft pilots or loggers may pay higher premiums than an office worker.

A young, healthy person who doesn’t smoke and who isn’t involved in risky work or activities will get a lower-priced policy than an older smoker who is in poor health.

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To Underwrite or Not to Underwrite

Not all life insurance policies require underwriting.


If your policy is the type that does not require underwriting ...

... like life insurance you get through work, it may cost more. The company may make more assumptions, grouping you with a larger pool of people, and taking on more risk.  


If your policy does require underwriting ...

... you may need a medical exam, in addition to answering several questions. But your cost may be less if you’re younger and also in good health. The cost is based on you and a much smaller group of people like you, so mortality is generally more predictable.


Premium Payment Types Can Impact the Cost of Your Policy

Some life insurance policies have premiums that are a specific amount, paid at a specific frequency, like monthly or annually; these are called non-flexible premiums. Other life insurance policies have flexible premiums; these are paid in varying amounts at different times. The type of premiums you pay for your policy, non-flexible or flexible, can play a role in the cost of your policy.


Non-Flexible Premiums

If you decide to pay your premiums once a year, they will typically be less than if you paid monthly or quarterly.


Flexible Premiums

If your policy allows for flexible premiums, it means you can change the amount of premium you pay, within limits, and when you pay. The policy will stay active, known as “in force,” as long as its value is enough to pay its costs and expenses.


Explore Our Policies

With a variety of life insurance policies to choose from, you can find one or a combination of policies to help meet your protection needs while also fitting into your budget. Explore the different types of life insurance policies available to you.

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