Life insurance is an important protection for your loved ones if anyone relies on you for financial support. The cost of life insurance tends to go up with age, so signing up now can save you a lot of money compared to waiting. Changes to your health, your family's health, and your lifestyle can drive up the cost of life insurance, but your rates won't go up once you lock them in. Life insurance will never be cheaper than it is today. Lock in your rate with Policygenius »
There are many things that get better with age, but life insurance isn't one of them. The cost of life insurance tends to rise with your age, so the best rate you can ever get for life insurance is likely the rate you'll get today. If you plan to get life insurance in the future, you are far better off signing up now than procrastinating and signing up later. I was approved for life insurance in December 2014 and pay $78.76 per month for a $1 million policy. If I were to sign up for life insurance today, however, I would likely pay a lot more. Here are three changes that have taken place in my life since 2014 that would lead to higher life insurance rates today. I'm older When it comes to life insurance, there is one change that will happen to you every single year that can raise your insurance rates. Your age is an important factor in life insurance costs, and every year you delay can make the cost higher. In 2014, I was 29 years old. Today, I'm 35. While it's morbid to think about, being six years older means I'm six years closer to death. That increase in risk for the insurance company translates to a higher monthly premium for the same policy.
My family health While I love my family, they are not doing any favors for my life insurance rates. A history of family health conditions including cancer and diabetes pushes my rates up. Since I applied for life insurance six years ago, my father was diagnosed with prostate cancer. In the eyes of an insurance company, that makes me riskier as I'm more likely to get cancer in the future. I'm doing a lot to monitor and protect myself from the terminal diagnosis my dad received. But the insurance companies just see it as more risk. If I were applying for new insurance, I would pay more because of it. I learned how to fly For my birthday in 2015, my in-laws bought me a one-hour introductory flight lesson. That fateful hour hooked me on aviation. I eventually booked many more flights of my own and earned a pilot's license. That's a lifestyle factor that further increases rates if I were to get new life insurance today. Flying planes is one of a list of activities insurance companies consider risky. If you are a pilot, rock climber, skydiver, race car driver, use recreational drugs, or engage in any activity that involves jumping off of high places or diving deep underwater, you could wind up with a bigger life insurance bill. How much I saved by getting life insurance when I did I tried a handful of life insurance estimate tools this morning to compare what my rates would be today. The estimate tools are not always completely accurate, as they don't include information from a life insurance medical exam and other application details. But based on the questionnaires I completed, my current life insurance cost could be hundreds or thousands of dollars more per year. Term life insurance rates lock in when you sign up, so getting insurance today guarantees your rate for the future. While I did choose to start flying planes, I didn't ask to get older or expect my dad to get cancer. Because my life insurance would cost so much more today, I'm thrilled I signed up when I did. Lock in your lowest life insurance rate today with help from Policygenius »
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Shopping for life insurance can be intimidating. There's so much information out there that it's...Shopping for life insurance can be intimidating. There's so much information out there that it's hard to know where to start. If you want to learn more about life insurance, figure out if it's for you, and get some tips on where to start (comparison site Policygenius is usually a good move), you've come to the right place. We've gathered some of Business Insider's most helpful articles to answer your burning questions, from who needs life insurance, to how much, to where to get it. Life insurance seems like a big deal. But setting it up is surprisingly easy, and paying for it can be surprisingly affordable. If you think you might need life insurance, but you're intimidated by the seriousness of it all or don't know where to start, we've gathered some of Business Insider's most helpful articles in one place. If you want to learn more about life insurance, figure out if it's for you, and get some tips on where to start, you've come to the right place. Who needs life insurance? If you have dependents — that's people who rely on your income, like children, a non-working spouse, or aging parents you support — you need life insurance. If you don't have dependents but do have debt or own a business, you might also want to consider it. Read more » How much life insurance do I need? Traditionally, the rule of thumb is to get life insurance worth 10 times your annual income — so if you make $75,000 a year, you'd get $750,000 worth of coverage. However, some experts consider that to be a low estimate, especially if you'd want your life insurance payout to cover your child's college tuition, or if you have a mortgage on your home you'd want to pay off. Some people choose to get millions in coverage. Read more » How much does life insurance cost? There are two types of life insurance: term life and whole life. Term life, which covers policyholders for a set term (like 30 years), is our recommendation for most people primarily because it's much more affordable than whole life. Depending on your profile and your coverage needs, it's possible to get term life insurance coverage for as little as $25 a month or less. When you sign up for a term policy, your payment is fixed, meaning unless you change your coverage needs, you'll be paying that $25 a month for the entire 30 years. Read more » Does life insurance cost more now that there's a global pandemic? In short, no. Business Insider's Liz Knueven reports that online life insurance agencies — despite a surge in applications — say getting term life insurance is just as easy, and just as cheap, as it was before the pandemic. "If you're a healthy young person and you're applying for life insurance, your rates shouldn't be changed due to this coronavirus," Allison Kade, a marketing director at online life insurance agency Fabric, told Knueven. "The underwriting process is the same if you were to apply today as if you were to apply two months ago." Where should I get life insurance? Every insurer evaluates potential applicants slightly differently, so you'll want to get multiple quotes to see who can offer the most coverage at the best monthly price. You can start by getting quotes from: Policygenius, a life-insurance comparison site. Read more about Policygenius » Bestow, an online insurer which offers term life policies for as little as two years at a time. Read more about Bestow » Haven Life, an online company which offers coverage without a medical exam Read more about Haven Life » Fabric, an online insurer geared toward parents with kids living at home. Read more about Fabric » I already have life insurance through work. Is that enough? As financial adviser Jeff Rose says, "the only people who have enough life insurance through work are the ones who don't need it." Employer-sponsored life insurance policies tend to offer limited coverage, and their chief drawback is that generally you won't be covered any longer if you leave your job. That's not to say you shouldn't sign up for the policy offered by your job — only that you'll want to strongly consider adding an independent policy as well. Read more » I'm going to have a baby — when should I get life insurance? For life insurance, the sooner, the better. Life insurance coverage typically gets more expensive as you age and become riskier — in the eyes of an insurance company — to cover. If you can, you'll want to get life insurance before you have a child, if only because you're currently younger and presumably healthier than you'll ever be (plus, it's nice to cross a chore off the list before you have a newborn). Read more » What if I don't have children? Should I have life insurance? Most people think about life insurance in terms of leaving money to their children should they die, but really it's for leaving money to dependents. That's anyone relying on your income to live, including aging parents you support or non-working spouses. Some people choose to get life insurance even if they don't have dependents, for a variety of reasons: They have debt they don't want their family members or cosigners to have to assume They want to leave money to pay the full cost of a funeral and burial so their loved ones don't have to pay for it They own a business and want to use the policy as collateral to borrow money or to keep things running if they die They want to help their same-sex spouse is taken care of, even if the courts overturn their marriage in the future Read more » Still shopping for life insurance? Get quotes from these Business Insider partners: Get quotes from Policygenius » Get quotes from Fabric » Get quotes from Haven Life » Get quotes from Bestow » Join the conversation about this story » NOW WATCH: 9 items to avoid buying at Costco
Experts say getting term life insurance is just as easy as it was before the coronavirus — and just as cheap
Life insurance isn't changing, even in the wake of coronavirus, experts from three online life insurance agencies...Life insurance isn't changing, even in the wake of coronavirus, experts from three online life insurance agencies say. Life insurance is still available, and applications are the same as they've always been. Medical exams might be changing under certain circumstances, however. Experts also say prices for term insurance are holding steady, even among a rise in applications. Policygenius can help you compare life insurance policies to find the right coverage for you, at the right price » The new coronavirus has uprooted much of daily life in the US. But when it comes to life insurance, experts don't see much changing. The application process, premium prices, and underwriting will be the same as they've always been, say experts from three different online life insurance agencies. It's still possible to get life insurance policies, and for term life policies, prices are expected to hold steady. Life insurance is still very much available, and three experts from three different life insurance agencies report an uptick in policy applications in March 2020. Allison Kade, a marketing director at online life insurance agency Fabric, says its products aren't changing. "If you're a healthy young person and you're applying for life insurance, your rates shouldn't be changed due to this coronavirus," she said. "The underwriting process is the same if you were to apply today as if you were to apply two months ago." None of the experts Business Insider spoke with expect to see changes in premium prices due to the coronavirus outbreak. All are still offering applications, and all say their applications are the same as they've always been. In most cases, medical exams are still happening as planned If the life insurance you're applying for requires a medical exam, chances are that it will still go on as planned, unless you're uncomfortable or are sick. Generally, these medical exams are done by paramedical examiners, also called parameds. These professionals are different from the registered nurses working in hospitals and emergency rooms. Oftentimes, medical exams are conducted in your home or office, without a trip to a doctor's office or hospital. "We have heard from some customers that they are a little hesitant about completing the medical exam right now," Haven Life's head of risk solutions Mark Sayre told Business Insider. The online insurance agency is planning to offer a 90-day extension on the medical exam portion of the application while offering immediate coverage up to $1 million. Nicholas Mancuso, a life insurance expert and senior operations manager at insurance comparison site Policygenius, says his agency is prompting people who are uncomfortable to look into policies with no medical exam required. Note that online life insurance agency Bestow, which offers term life insurance for two to 20 years at a time, does not require a medical exam for applicants. Travel history shouldn't affect premiums, but it may affect the application process Many life insurance applications ask about travel history or future travel plans, and experts say that this has been a standard practice long before coronavirus. While travel history shouldn't affect your premiums, it might affect other parts of the process, namely the medical exam. Both Sayre and Mancuso say that applicants who have recently returned from a country with a heavy outbreak may need to wait to finish their application and complete a medical exam if necessary. "We are tracking the State Department website and focused on any future travel plan to level three or four countries," Sayre says. "For applicants to are traveling to those countries, we may postpone their application until 30 days after they've returned from those countries." Since Business Insider spoke with Sayre, the US State Department has issued a level four travel advisory for every country in the world. Mancuso says insurers working with Policygenius are determining medical exam eligibility on a case-by-case basis. "They're going to ask you travel questions about where you've gone to see if there's any reason to postpone [the medical exam], and maybe they're going to wait until you don't for sure have any symptoms." Pricing for term life insurance policies shouldn't change Life insurance companies make money by investing premiums and earning interest. With markets in a free-fall and interest rates lower than they have been in years, it would make sense that insurers would be feeling a squeeze to raise prices. But, Sayre says that pricing for term life policies — the option most experts favor for affordability — shouldn't be affected at all. "I think where you may see price increases or price changes is more on the permanent insurance side where interest rates are a much bigger part of pricing," he says. While permanent insurance policies, also called whole life insurance, may see prices increase, term life insurance prices should stay the same. Policygenius can help you compare life insurance policies to find the right coverage for you, at the right price » Still shopping for life insurance? Get quotes from these Business Insider partners: Get quotes from Policygenius » Get quotes from Fabric » Get quotes from Haven Life » Get quotes from Bestow » Join the conversation about this story » NOW WATCH: 9 items to avoid buying at Costco
Life insurance medical exams are quick, easy, and convenient and shouldn't scare you away from...Life insurance medical exams are quick, easy, and convenient and shouldn't scare you away from applying for insurance. The medical exam is used to assess your current health to give you an accurate rate. You don't pay for a life insurance medical exam, and policies may be much more expensive without them. Life insurance will never be cheaper than it is today. Lock in your rate with Policygenius » The process of getting life insurance is fairly simple and straightforward. It starts with a detailed application answering questions about your health and lifestyle. But before most insurance companies will issue a new policy, they require you to go through a brief medical exam. The life insurance medical exam is a quick and easy process. I had one about six years ago when signing up for my own life insurance, and it was a convenient and mostly painless process. If you are considering new life insurance, here's what you should know about the life insurance medical exam. They go over your application and medical history Most insurance companies will send a nurse to your home or work for the medical exam. There's no trip to a doctor's office or medical facility. My exam took less than an hour on a Sunday morning at my home. When the nurse arrived, she went over just about every question I had already answered on my application for accuracy. That included questions about past hospitalizations, any ongoing medical conditions, and my family's medical history. Even if you're tempted to tell a little fib, make sure you are fully honest and transparent when applying for any kind of insurance. Lying on an application is considered fraud. In addition to losing your policy, it's against the law. Insurance fraud can lead to fines and jail time, so tell the whole truth throughout. Plan on giving blood and urine samples The application is pretty thorough, but the insurer won't just take your word for every answer. To ensure their bases are covered, the nurse will generally take your vital signs as well as a blood and urine sample. Vital signs like your pulse, blood pressure, height, and weight can help insurers predict your risk of heart disease. The blood test looks at things like cholesterol, blood sugar, and signs of drug use. The urine test looks for things like tobacco and drug use, and healthy kidney and liver function. Life insurance companies are not out to catch you in a lie. They are just doing their due diligence to ensure they assign you to the right risk and rate category when offering you a new policy. Applications are rarely turned down. They just want to fully understand your risk of dying before the policy's end date. Your medical exam can save you money A small, growing group of insurers is willing to issue life insurance policies to healthy people without a medical exam. However, in many cases, the life insurance you'll find without a medical exam is called "guaranteed issue." As the name implies, they guarantee you will get a policy regardless of health and lifestyle. Guaranteed issue policies take people with advanced cancer, heart disease, and dangerous living conditions. A medical exam proves you are healthier than the riskiest applicants and saves you money on your insurance. Don't think of a medical exam as something that drives up your cost. It proves you belong in a healthy rate category. One or two health factors alone won't make life insurance much more expensive in many cases. You may still qualify for the best rates or a category for people just below the top. Don't let a medical exam scare you away from life insurance Life insurance medical exams are fast and easy. They come right to you at a convenient time and place to help you qualify for the best possible rates. Aside from a small pinch when they draw your blood sample, the entire process is painless. The cost of life insurance tends to go up with age, so don't delay if you plan to sign up for life insurance in the future. Your best rates will probably come today. Procrastinating can be a very expensive mistake. If you have a family that depends on your income, it's a smart idea to sign up for life insurance today. Lock in your lowest life insurance rate today with help from Policygenius » Still shopping for life insurance? Get quotes from these Business Insider partners: Get quotes from Policygenius » Get quotes from Fabric » Get quotes from Haven Life » Get quotes from Bestow » Join the conversation about this story » NOW WATCH: What it's like to ride the world's longest flight