REDUCE YOUR LIFE INSURANCE PREMIUMS BOTH BEFORE AND AFTER YOU PURCHASE A POLICY
There are number of factors that impact your insurance costs. The average Canadian spends close to $58 per month (approx. $700 annually) on e.g. Term Life insurance, which is a significant cost block. This article lays out the main approaches that can be taken to lower these costs.
There are many explanations for the life insurance prices that you pay and it is important to understand what you can do to before and after you purchase your Policy to keep your premiums low without affecting your coverage.
YOU PLAN TO GET LIFE INSURANCE: WHAT CAN YOU DO TO LOWER THE COSTS?
Aside from the standard advice to shop around and get multiple quotes, there are number of things that you can do to get lower insurance quotes from life insurers.
1. Apply for the policy while you are young – most Canadians apply for life insurance in their early-to-mid thirties when they are getting engaged or married, or begin having children. Applying for the policy earlier will often get you better rates in return. According to statistical data, Canadians pay an average of $40 per month for a Term Policy with a similar coverage ($250-500k) if they are 31-35 years of age, $47 per month if they are 35-40 years of age, and as much as $64 if they are 51-55 years of age.
2. Be healthy when applying for the policy. Many insurance customers pay 25% more for their Policy because they are overweight. Staying in shape and maintaining a healthy lifestyle will not only eliminate this extra portion of the costs, but can also result in a discount of up to 25%.
3. Stop smoking well in advance of applying for an insurance policy. Insurers will expect to see at least a year without smoking in order to be granted the standard premiums. Otherwise, prepare yourself for premiums that are almost double.
4. Drive safely – Maintaining a clean driving record will be rewarded not only by your auto insurer, but also by your life insurance provider. You can avoid an extra 25-50% of additional costs that result from a poor driving record. Having a flawed driving record with several at-fault accidents can lead to a declining you by insurance companies.
YOU ALREADY HAVE A LIFE INSURANCE POLICY: HOW DO YOU LOWER ITS COSTS?
Surprisingly, many people are not aware of the ability to lower their insurance costs after purchasing a policy. The key is to improve your own risk profile, thus, making it less risky for the insurance company. Below are four simple approaches to enhance your risk profile:
1. Stop smoking – If you are able to demonstrate that you gave up smoking and have not returned to it for at least one year, you may lower your insurance costs.
2. Stop drinking – Limiting your alcohol consumption will positively impact your insurance budget. After one year of no drinking, it is time to talk to your insurance provider. Having a few glasses of wine each week is not a problem; however, drinking three to four beers a day will not reduce your rates.
3. Lose weight – Improving your physical fitness and health condition can be positively reflected in your life insurance premiums. You not only have the opportunity to reduce your premiums to the normal level, but can also qualify for a ‘Premium Health Customer Discount’ of up to an additional 25% off your life insurance premiums.
4. Keep driving safely – If you received your insurance policy with a poor driving record, there is a good chance it has increased your life insurance rates by as much as 25% to 50%. If your offenses are three or more years old, this becomes visible to insurers and you can get your insurance premiums adjusted accordingly.