Why is Life Insurance so Important for Women?

Why is Life Insurance so Important for Women?

Life insurance allows you to pay off your mortgage and enable your loved ones to remain in the family home, alleviating them of this financial burden – should anything happen to you.

It can also be used to meet future family living costs, cover spiralling funeral costs and/or provide an inheritance.

Even if you are a stay-at-home mum, without a tangible income life insurance, life cover can be invaluable. Think about all of the unpaid roles you perform they perform. Full-time childcare alone costs on average over £250 a week.

Life insurance is very misunderstood

However, there are many misconceptions around life insurance and the average monthly cost (premium).

In fact, according to research from leading insurer SunLife, 47% of people in the UK are not able to answer; how much life insurance costs?

These misconceptions could help explain why less than 50% of UK women have life insurance protection.

However, this significant coverage gap leaves many families in the UK financially vulnerable.

How much is life insurance?

The cost of your life insurance premium very much depends on your individual circumstances.

Some of these key factors are outside of your control, such as your age or family medical history.

However, there are other factors within your control which can help you reduce cost and help you look after your personal finances.

We asked award-winning life insurance broker Reassured to detail their top 7 factors which affect the cost of life insurance;

Cover amount (sometimes referred to as sum assured) – The larger the cover amount, the higher your monthly premiums.
So, be careful to establish the level of cover you require. 

The trick is to not over or under protect yourself, ensuring you do not unnecessarily pay over the odds but also that your selfless investment is not wasted by being inadequate.

Length of policy (or term) – Generally speaking, the longer the policy term, the higher your premium will be. 

Here it’s important to ensure you have cover for as long as it is necessary. 

For example, if you have children it makes sense to ensure your cover lasts until they are financially independent. Or if you have a mortgage, until this significant debt is paid off.

Smoking – If you smoke this can significantly increase the cost of your premiums. What’s more, as you age this loading of premiums only accelerates. 

Why? Simply because of the associated health risks and increased likelihood of a claim. 

Also, you may be surprised to learn that insurers consider you a smoker even if you vape or use nicotine replacement products.

Ever thought about quitting smoking?

Weight – If you are overweight this will also have a significant effect on the cost of your life insurance. 

As with smoking, obesity is strongly linked to a number of medical conditions, which statically increases the likelihood of a claim. 

Insurers will mitigate their risk by inflating your premiums.

Type of policy – There are a number of different policy types to choose from, each differing in cost. 

For example, if you only need to cover a repayment mortgage and have no dependants then decreasing term cover may suffice.

Decreasing cover is term-based and only pays out if you pass away during the set term. The cover decreases over time usually inline with a mortgage and as a result, it’s very cost-effective.

But if you want to guarantee a payout you may decide on the whole of life cover. However, as a payout here is guaranteed an insurer will demand high premiums. Unlike with term-based policies, with the whole of life, you continue paying premiums for as long as you live.

Alcohol consumption – Most of us women in the UK enjoy a drink now and again. However, if you consume very high levels of alcohol or are alcohol dependant this will increase your premiums. 

Even if you are not alcohol dependant, it could still pay to reduce your consumption in order to secure cheaper premiums.

It is important to not be dishonest on your application to, in an attempt to secure lower premiums. This is called non-disclosure and could invalidate your policy and wasting your investment,

Joint life insurance (or 2 single policies)? – If you are in a relationship you may consider taking out a joint life insurance policy.

The main benefit is that they are 25% – 30% cheaper compared to 2 individual policies.

Whilst joint life insurance is significantly cheaper, it only provides one payout, whereas 2 individual policies offer 2 separate payouts and double the coverage. 

If you have children who rely on you financially, 2 policies could make more sense.

Always compare quotes to save on your premiums

As discussed in this article, there are multiple factors which determine the cost of your life insurance.

Make sure you choose the right policy type to meet your unique needs, ensuring the term length is not unnecessarily long (or short).

Also, if you are able to live a healthier lifestyle; curbing your drinking, losing weight or even quitting smoking that could save you lots of money.

Once you know which policy best meets your needs and how long the term should be, it is still very important to compare multiple quotes.

Why?

Because insurers employ different underwriting processes and follow different criteria. As a result, the cost of premiums can vary wildly for the same level of cover.

You can source different quotes online yourself and run the comparison yourself. But this is very time-consuming.

Other options include using an online comparison website or using an FCA regulated broker.

The main benefit of a comparison site is that you can compare quotes 24/7. However, they rarely compare quotes from a wide range of providers.

Using a broker enables you to compare multiple quotes (usually for free), but they can also help you write your policy in trust (avoiding 40% inheritance tax) and complete the lengthy application process.

Whichever, method you choose the most important thing is your loved ones are financially protected whatever the future may hold.

You may be surprised to learn that life insurance premiums start from under 20p-a-day.

Poppy Watt

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