From the Learning Center

What are Term Life Insurance Rates by Age?

By the Bestow Team·August 05, 2022·5 Minute Read

In this Article

Here’s a riddle for you: What goes up but never comes down?

Give up?

Your age!

Dad jokes aside, there is a lesson here—because the same thing could be said for term life insurance rates. Generally speaking, as you get older, the cost of starting a term life insurance policy goes up.

The good news is that when you buy a term life insurance policy, your premium payments remain the same for the duration of the policy. 

Let’s say that you decide to buy a 30-year term life insurance policy in your mid-20s — the monthly premium payments will be the exact same for the next 30 years. That rate is locked in (high five from future you). 

Life Insurance Rates by Age

Does term life insurance increase with age? This is a great question. Premium costs are determined by age, health status, and gender, among other factors. If you wait a few years to purchase a life insurance policy, the monthly premium payments will be higher than if you had locked them in today because you are older. 

Every life insurance company will adjust term life insurance rates by age. Why? It all comes down to risk. When you apply for life insurance, you are assigned to an insurance risk class, which helps determine the premium cost of your life insurance policy.

Here are some of the factors that might be used in the underwriting process to help determine your risk class and premium price:

  • Age
  • Medical History
  • Family History
  • Health 
  • Weight
  • Gender
  • Smoking status
  • Family history

To some, age ain’t nothin’ but a number, but from a life insurance company’s perspective, the chances of a death benefit payout increase with age.

Term Life Insurance Age Rate Chart

If you need a visual to illustrate the change in term life insurance rates by age, take a look at this chart. It depicts the price of a 30-year term policy for a healthy, non-smoking woman across ages 25-40.*

When it comes to the average cost of life insurance, the early bird usually gets the worm (and in this case, the worm is a lower rate). 

Age $100,000 in Coverage $250,000 in Coverage $500,000 in Coverage $1,000,000 in Coverage
*Rates shown are examples based on a healthy, non-smoking woman applying for a 30-year term life insurance policy from at ages 25, 30, 35, and 40, with data pulled on December 9, 2022. Your actual life insurance premium will be determined by underwriting review.

If you’re curious about your life insurance rates, most companies offer term life insurance quotes free of charge, and the whole process typically takes less than a minute. You can even plug in your future age to see just how much your life insurance rates might rise if you were to wait.

At What Age Should You Get Life Insurance? 

If you’re wondering at what age should you get life insurance, perhaps consider reframing the question. Think of it this way: do you have people who financially depend on you? Do you plan on getting married? Do you have kids or are you someday planning to have kids? 

If the answer to any of these questions is yes, you might want to consider life insurance coverage. It’s not fun to think about your loved ones going on without you, but if they did have to, what might they need to pay for? A life insurance payout is tax-free and could be used by your beneficiaries to:

  • Pay off student loans
  • Make mortgage payments
  • Cover credit card debt and other expenses
  • Establish a College Savings Fund
  • Help with childcare
  • Go toward final expenses
  • Anything your beneficiary determines necessary 

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Does Term Life Insurance Get More Expensive as You Get Older?

Now that you know term life insurance premiums increase with age, you might be curious as to what that increase looks like year to year. On average, life insurance rates increase 8 to 10 percent with every year of age, though that number can reach 12 percent once you turn 50.

Age influences more than just your rates — it also affects eligibility, term period options, and the amount of coverage you can purchase

At What Age Should You Drop Life Insurance?

As we move through different life stages our financial situation changes. In turn, our insurance needs may change, too. 

Perhaps you purchased a policy for additional protection while your kid was young, but now they’re out of the house and doing that adulting thing. Maybe you got a policy while you were paying off a mortgage but that financial obligation has since been taken care of. The good news is that you can easily cancel a policy if you decide you no longer need it. There’s generally no contract or penalties. 

Even still, it’s not a decision you should make lightly. Before dropping a life insurance policy, take stock of your current financial situation and liabilities. If you were to pass away, would your loved ones face financial challenges? 

  • Mortgage
  • Car payments
  • Credit card debt
  • Final expenses
  • Kids and education

Term Life Insurance Made Simple

Getting older is something worth celebrating. With age, you gain wisdom, empathy, and, when you hit that senior status, you may even get a special discount at your favorite department store. Not bad! But if you want lower rates on life insurance, you should consider buying young. Remember: as you get older, it generally gets more expensive. 

Bestow makes it super easy to apply for term life insurance. It takes just minutes to apply online and most get a decision right away. Rates starting at $11 per month on coverage from $100,000 up to $1.5 million. Start with a free quote and apply for your lowest rate today. 

Key Takeaways