Life insurance is an excellent tool that allows us to secure our loved ones’ financial future, but it is also a major investment. Over the course of an insurance term, even a slightly lower premium can result in major savings for the policyholder.
Let’s look at some of the crucial factors considered by insurance agencies when pricing out their policies. A few of the criteria mentioned below are outside of an individual’s control, while others are aspects that can be remedied with healthier lifestyle choices.
Unsurprisingly, the main factor that decides insurance premiums is the age of the policyholder. The younger you are, the chances are that you will end up paying premiums for a large duration before the insurance agency has to worry about a payout to your beneficiaries. Consequently, the lower premiums make purchasing insurance extremely viable, especially if you consider how high the premiums are the later you purchase insurance.
Gender also plays a role in determining the price of insurance. Insurance agencies rely on statistical models that give them an estimated life expectancy of individuals. The fact remains that, on average, women tend to live nearly five years more than men. As a result, they enjoy slightly lower rates than men as statistically will end up paying premiums for a longer period of time.
Smoking increases the risk of contracting all sorts of medical ailments. As a result, for people that smoke regularly, it’s fairly common for them to pay more than twice as much as non-smokers to receive similar coverage. Another motivating factor to quit smoking is the effect it will have on savings.
The underwriting process for most insurance provides usually involves a medical exam which allows the insurance agency to record height, weight, blood pressure, cholesterol and other vital health parameters. They might also take an electrocardiogram (ECG or EKG) to check for underlying heart conditions. It is crucial to get conditions like high cholesterol and diabetes in check before committing to an insurance policy to ensure a competitive rate. There are a few insurance agencies that offer ‘no exam’ policies but tend to enforce higher premiums.
Do your hobbies include racing cars or climbing steep treacherous mountains? If the answer is yes, then you will most likely have to pay substantially more for insurance coverage. Any person that engages in high-risk activities frequently increases the likelihood of injury or death, which is a big concern for insurance providers. Several insurance agencies also tend to charge more for people with dangerous professions like mining, fishing or transportation.
Family Medical History
There is no way to change or alter your gene pool. As a result, having a family history of stroke, cancer and other related genetic medical conditions increases the likelihood of you contracting a said illness and this leads to higher insurance rates. Insurance providers want to know if there are any preexisting conditions that your parents or siblings might have and the chances of your getting it in the future, especially if the condition can result in death. Some insurance providers place a lot of emphasis on family health than others, but it is more than likely to have an impact on premium rates.
This might be a surprise to many, but life insurance agencies also consider your driving record during the underwriting process. Whether they ask about prior violations on the application or not, they can access motor vehicle records which allow accessing your driving history and any violations you might have. Bear in mind that the past 3 to 5 years carry the most significance, so if your driving record has improved in that duration, you may receive a more favorable price.