The cost of life insurance or life assurance (they’re the same thing) can vary greatly depending on your circumstances. If you’re a young, fit, non-smoker then it can be relatively cheap however for an older person the costs can be a lot greater. There are some general things to look out for however, which should keep the costs of your life insurance low regardless of your social and personal lifestyle or indeed your age.
Firstly, it’s always a good idea to keep on reviewing your policy every couple of years. As a rule people tend to take out life insurance, often in conjunction with a mortgage when it sometimes becomes a requirement of the home loan, and then they forget about it. Job done, nothing to worry about, I’m covered! Whilst this is true, as with anything there are normally cheaper and better options available so it really can pay to keep on shopping around. Under certain market conditions the cost of life insurance can fall significantly meaning there is no excuse to let your policy stagnate when much cheaper cover can be found. This is particularly relevant if your first life insurance policy was taken out in conjunction with your mortgage as in all probability you would have taken the easiest option at that time, often without looking at the market as a whole. So, rule one is shop around and keep shopping around every couple of years and if you find a better deal then switch!
The next thing to consider is that as we go through life our circumstances tend to change and therefore so might our requirements with regards to our life insurance policy. People’s overall level of debt can change radically over time and a policy taken out five years ago when your debt was greater may not now be appropriate if your financial position is a lot stronger and you no longer require cover that relates to your circumstances many years ago.
Consider carefully whether you need cover for the whole if your life or just for a fixed term. For example, if the primary reason for taking out a life insurance policy is to cover the cost of your mortgage then it will be cheaper (and usually with the added bonus of fixed costs) to take out a policy for the duration of the home loan rather than your entire life (which will hopefully be much longer)!
Finally, back to the original point we raised with regards to whether to opt for life assurance or life insurance. No need to make the choice as they really are the same thing! Assurance is just another way of referring to the same product although sometimes the terminology changes when something is guaranteed or 'assured’ to happen (such as death!) as opposed to 'insuring’ against something that we hope doesn’t – such as a car crash, a burglary or a fire.
Choice, the consumer group is advising consumers who live in places that are prone to flooding from taking out insurance in an irresponsible manner, whilst at the same time heavily criticizing the industry according to the insurance council.
Recently the advisory group held its annual Shonky Awards, where the group awarded lemon trophies for dubious dodgy and deceitful goods and services.
Choice singled out the insurance industry, following this summer’s flooding in Victoria, Queensland and New South Wales.
Shares of Australian insurers that have exposure to Japan are vulnerable to sell offs amid investor fears that reinsurance costs will soar.
Australia’s largest insurer QBE Insurance Group also has the biggest exposure to Japan warned on Monday that it expects net claims of US$125 million. Its shares fell by 1 per cent on Monday, whilst rival Insurance Australia Group saw its share price decline by 2.6 per cent, with Suncorp falling 1.3 per cent. Neither IAG nor Suncorp have any exposure to Japan, but their shares still sold off as investors expressed concern that the two companies would be negatively impacted by rising reinsurance costs.
Australian insurance major IAG reaffirming recent guidance given to investors posted a 51 per cent decline in first have net profit.
IAG’s first half profit for the six months ending December 31 fell 51 per cent to $161 million from $329 million during the same time period in the previous year.