Do I need life insurance when I’m young and healthy?

As with most things, “it depends”, but the lure of cheaper premiums when you’re healthy and in your 20s or 30s shouldn’t be underestimated. Read on to find out more….

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Contact the team at Downton Mortgages & Financial Services for more detailed advice.


The advertising of some of the big insurance companies in the early noughties means we tend to associate life insurance with grey haired retirees doing crossword puzzles in the garden using the free pen they received from their insurance policy.  You’d be forgiven therefore for not thinking life insurance is relevant to you if you’re in your 20s or 30s.  In fact, now I come to think of it, you probably don’t even remember those adverts!

It might seem counterintuitive to pay for something you don’t anticipate needing for many years, especially when the cost of living has risen in recent years, but if you’re saving up for a big life event like buying your first home, it’s worth speaking to a Financial Adviser now to understand what your options are and the benefits of taking out a policy earlier, possibly with lower monthly payments and less exclusions to your cover. By putting cover in place, it can give you and your family peace of mind for potentially little outlay. If the last few years have taught us anything, it’s that life is fragile, and we can’t control what’s around the corner.


What is life insurance?

Life insurance is a way of ensuring that your loved ones are supported financially should something happen to you.  You pay a monthly amount to the insurance company and in return you get peace of mind that after you are gone your loved ones will receive either a lump sum or regular payments to cover the cost of things like mortgage payments and costs of living etc.  The life insurance market is fairly diverse with a number of different products which we won’t cover in this blog, but you can find out more HERE or chat to a Financial Adviser to help you navigate all the terminology.


Why is it relevant to you?

According to Direct Line, only 37% of the UK population currently have a life insurance policy despite over 60% agreeing that their family would benefit [1]If you’re unsure if it might benefit you, then asking yourself 3 simple questions could help you decide if it’s worth exploring further:


  1.  WHAT is at risk?

The more financial responsibility you accumulate, the more important it is to consider how those responsibilities will be fulfilled when you are no longer there.  A mortgage is probably the most common example of this, and some lenders recommend that you have some form of life insurance for exactly this reason.  Another example might be that you’re a business owner with certain debts or liabilities that need to be covered should anything happen to you.  Start by making a list of everything that you are financially responsible for.


  1. WHO is at risk?

If anyone depends on you financially then they are at risk of being left in difficulty should the worst happen to you.  Having children is a life changing moment and one that drives 30% of decisions to get life insurance in the UK [2].  Even if you don’t have children but plan to have a family in the future or if you live with a partner who relies in part on your income, then life insurance may be worth considering.  Even if your partner can afford to keep up with the cost of their lifestyle, they may want a break from work while they grieve and life insurance can give your loved one that option along with others (like funeral costs) that you may not have considered.


  1. What is YOUR risk?

It goes without saying that the more likely you are to encounter danger in your occupation or lifestyle, the more sensible it would be to protect your loved ones financially.  Policies for high risk hobbies like rock climbing and scuba diving can carry higher monthly payments, so locking these in when you are young and healthy can be sensible.  A Financial Adviser can help take the heavy lifting out of finding the right insurer that suits your lifestyle risks and circumstances.


So when might life insurance not be suitable?

Not everyone needs life insurance – if you plan to remain single and have enough wealth to cover all your expenses and financial responsibilities, then the cost of monthly payments might be better invested elsewhere.  Conversely you might benefit from less cover for a much lower monthly payment rather than having no cover at all.  It’s also important to consider that not all types of insurance policies are equal – for example a 20 year term policy taken out in your 20s is unlikely to yield any benefit when it’s most needed, and this is why taking the time to chat to an impartial Financial Adviser is important, so you don’t end up investing in something that doesn’t maximise benefit for you and your family.


What should I do next?

If, after reading this you think your loved ones might benefit from you putting some life protection in place, but you’re not sure where to start, then contact the team at Downton Mortgages for more detailed adviceThey will be able to talk you through all of your options so that you can make an informed decision with no obligation to set up a policy if you don’t think it’s right for you at this time.


Please note for these insurance products, terms and conditions apply. This information is a summary only. You will receive a full policy document upon application. This policy will set out the terms, conditions and limitations of cover provided under the plan.


The information contained within was correct at the time of publication but is subject to change.



[1] Direct Line – Only 37% of people have life insurance

[2] Forbes Advisor Survey – Why do people get life insurance?