You're never too young for life insurance
The average age of a life insurance claimant is lower than you think.
Tuesday 7 June 2061 will be something of an important day for me. Or it will if the ludicrously depressing Death Clock rings true. As that’s the day – according to site – that I will breathe my final breath.
Yes, simply enter your age, sex, BMI and smoking status into the site and Death Clock will forecast your final day on this earth – loading up a counter of how many seconds you have to live (I’ve got 1,553,516,650s left as I write this, if anyone’s concerned).
The site is also a total load of tosh. But that’s not to say its message – ‘a friendly reminder that life is slipping away’ – should be ignored, particularly if new life insurance research is to be believed…
Figures from the protection giant Scottish Provident show that 50% of life insurance payouts in 2011 were for policies held by individuals under the age of 55. The research also found that the average age for a life claimant was just 56.
Just under one in five claims (18%) were for policyholders aged 44 or under, while 32% were aged between 45 and 54. The average claim amount was £84,744.
The figures are a stark reminder for adults of all ages that life insurance is something to think about, no matter how morbid a subject it is, from an early age. If you have financial dependents or any debts that would be unmanageable for your family if you were to die – you need life insurance.
Put another way, if you have children you want to put through education or a mortgage that needs to be paid off, and don’t have life cover in place, you’re putting your family at risk if the worst should happen to you.
Premiums set to rise
A massive misconception about life insurance is that it’s extremely expensive.
In fact, a 30-year-old, non-smoking male can get hold of 20 years of cover for less than £10 per month. That’s around 32p per day – bargain! And it’s possible to cut your costs even further – take a look at Save 50%+ on your life insurance for some tips.
However life insurance prices won’t stay this low forever. In fact, they may not stay as low as they are now for the rest of this year. It’s all thanks to a ruling from the European Court of Justice that, from December 2012, will prevent insurers taking gender into account when calculating premiums.
Currently, men pay more for life insurance than women. This is because men have a shorter average life expectancy, so it's more likely that insurers will receive a claim within the term of the policy from men rather than women.
But from December, this will not be the case. Premiums for women will undoubtedly increase after the ECJ ruling comes into force, while those for men should dip.
Bonus perks while you’re still alive
Another huge misconception about life insurance is that it’s only useful when the policyholder dies. Most modern plans come built in with several bonus perks that can be taken advantage of before anyone has passed away.
Children’s critical illness cover is a common add-in that could prove vital for many policy holders. However it is usually only made available for free to customers who have standard critical illness built into their policy. And this standard cover will push up your premiums.
Children’s critical illness cover pays out if one of your children is diagnosed with a critical illness. This will allow you to take time off work or pay for private treatment. Most insurers offer around £20,000 of cover or 20%-50% of the sum insured, whichever is lower.
Many life insurers also offer financial advice and counseling services to all customers. These usually consist of 24 hour phone lines or in-home nurses and counselors. Friends Life also has a service knows as ‘Best Doctors’ which allows you to obtain a second opinion from a network of doctors for any medical diagnoses made on you or your family.
Legal & General’s SmoothMove is another unique service. Offered to all customers with mortgage protection policies it provides car recovery, a replacement removal van and even emergency hotel accommodation if anything goes wrong on your home-moving day.
Have a read of The bonus perks of life insurance for full details of all these add-ins and a listing of what each insurer offers.
So there you have it: you’re never too young for life insurance – so what are you waiting for? Head over to our life insurance calculator to get a quick and easy quote now.