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By the time you’re 45 years old, you’re likely in your financial prime. Much like building up a 401(k) or IRA gives you a financial cushion for your future, life insurance does the same for your family and anyone you leave behind should you die prematurely. At 45 years old, you’re young enough to access an affordable life insurance policy and cover your debt, set your kids up for college or leave a lasting financial legacy.
The mid-40s age bracket is a popular time to shop for life insurance, as many people want to protect their families and financial interests. At this stage of your life, a term policy is a solid choice, with the option to convert to a permanent policy later. A convertible term policy gives you flexibility in the future, so if you need the insurance longer than you thought or you want to switch to a policy that accumulates cash value, you can upgrade to a permanent policy.
|Coverage range||$50,000 – $1,000,000|
|Term lengths||Level term for 10, 20, or 30 years or Annual Renewable Term|
|Issue age||18 – 75 years|
While life insurance underwriters do take your age into account when determining your rates, a healthy 45-year-old is not deemed too risky to insure. You’re in a good position to qualify for both coverage and preferred rates.
Life insurance companies tailor their rates to the individual. But according to our research, the typical cost for $500,000 of coverage in a 20-year term policy for a man in perfect health is $47.85 a month. For a woman, the average cost for the same policy is $47.85 a month.
If you’re trying to decide whether it’s worth splurging on a higher level of coverage, here’s the good news. When you’re in your mid-40s, chances are it won’t be too much of a price difference. Our research shows a $250,000 policy with Legal & General — one of the cheapest insurers — will cost just $25.87 a month for a 45-year-old woman. If she wants to boost her coverage to $500,000, that rate would climb to $44.62 a month, or $81.79 a month for a $1 million policy. That’s less than $20 a month for double the protection.
*Based on sample rates from Policygenius, August 2019.
To get an idea of how much you’d pay for coverage, compare average monthly costs for a 20-year, $250,000 term life policy for a 45-year-old in perfect health.
|Legal & General||$32.42||$25.87|
*Based on sample rates from Policygenius, August 2019.
There are three main policies to choose from:
A typical, healthy 45-year-old has a long life ahead of them. According to life expectancy data, a woman’s risk of dying in the next five years is 1.21%. For a man, the figure climbs slightly to 1.88%.
To put this into context, let’s look at the average life expectancy in the US. A man who reaches 65 can expect to live until age 84.3, and a woman is likely to live until the age of 86.6. Of course, these are averages; about a quarter of 65-year-olds live past age 90.
|Within the next…||Man||Woman|
The expected value is derived from the odds of an individual dying within the term, multiplied by the payout of the policy. You can think of the number as the expected return of a policy. Say someone has a 20% chance of dying within 30 years and the policy pays out $500,000. The expected return is $100,000 since you multiply $500,000 by 20%.
You can use this value to determine if a policy might be worth it for you. Say a 20-year term life insurance policy costs $1,000 a year – so $20,000 over 20 years and the expected value is $50,000. You can assume the term policy might be a worthwhile purchase since the expected return is higher than the potential cost.
As a 45-year-old, you may be a breadwinner, business owner or someone with financial assets to protect, so buying life insurance is a smart move. Most people in their mid-40s opt for a term life insurance policy that will take them up to their retirement — usually 20 or 30 years. If you’re in good health, you can typically lock in a pretty low premium for a quarter- or half-million dollars in coverage.
There’s nothing more personal than life insurance. When you’re planning for the future, compare life insurance policies to find one that fits your needs.
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