Many young people who have not previously bought life insurance start with the same question, “What will it cost me?” For people in the prime of their life, often living on a budget, spending money on a insurance policy for something so far in the future can seem like a waste. The truth is, life is unpredictable and an ounce of prevention can be worth a pound of cure. Life insurance protects those you love from financial hardship when the worst strikes, and the earlier (and healthier) you purchase a policy the less it will cost you in the long run to have a robust safety net for you family.
So getting to the cost… Life insurance premiums are calculated after looking at an individual’s health risk factors, such as tobacco use, cholesterol level, obesity, diabetes and family history. Modifying controllable health and lifestyle factors will reduce your life insurance premium, in addition to making you healthier.
CALCULATING LIFE INSURANCE PREMIUMS
When applying for life insurance, you will be asked to provide information about your medical history and take a physical examination.
If you are not completely truthful about your medical history, you may lose your policy or, when you die, your dependents may be denied benefits. Therefore, it is imperative that you tell the truth throughout this process.
In regards to the examination process, a medical professional hired by the insurance company will typically conduct the exam. This person will check your weight, blood pressure and other vital signs.
After this process, the insurance company will determine your premium. There are health factors that you can alter to lower your premium. For instance, you could:
- Stop smoking
- Lose weight
- Improve your cholesterol levels
- Take your medications regularly
Do you have family members who nag you about exercising more, eating healthier, quitting smoking or lowering your blood pressure? It might be time to start listening to them. After all, living an unhealthy lifestyle and being diagnosed with preventable complications (e.g., smoking-related asthma) will only increase your premium. If you have taken the steps to improve controllable health factors since obtaining your life insurance policy, such as quitting smoking, and have a policy you should contact the insurance company and ask about lowering your premium.
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