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7 surprising reasons you’ll pay more for Life Insurance


The ‘40s were a different time.

Old WWII was pretty contentious – but that’s a whole other topic and it’s not what I want to talk about today. (My post on war history is coming next week. ?)

After the war had ended, in 1946, Camels, the cigarette company, ran an advert around the tagline ‘More Doctors Smoke Camels’. It ran for several years and essentially peddled a pack (ya see what I did there) of lies.

The moral of their story was that smoking was cool although people had no real idea of the damage it could cause.

Lucky Strike, another brand, went so far as to claim that its cigarette smoke was ‘pure and clean’.

Which is nuts.

And sure, we’ve moved on since then, but plenty of people still smoke.

But here’s one for fact about smoking that 100% true: smoking will rob your pockets if you apply for Life Insurance in Ireland today.

So what else will cause your money to go up in smoke?

1. Smoking

I’m going to mention it again in case you skipped the intro. Smoking will make your insurance premium waaaay more expensive.

Look, we’ve all seen the pics of tumours and weird growths on cigarette packets. Smoking is bad for you – everyone knows that, but according to the National Consumer Agency, smokers versus non-smokers can save up to €7,500 on the price of term Life Insurance.


(And by the way, switching to an e-cig isn’t a clear run either. Most of the insurers still count it as a risk.)

2. Family history

Family history can be pretty interesting, especially if you can trace it back a couple of generations. Who knows what skeletons you’ll find in the closet? But those skeletons aren’t so great for your Life Insurance premium if they come attached to health issues.

Family history is a big part of identifying risks around various diseases, so insurers will want info on your immediate family history, i.e. your parents and sibs, so no need to mention crazy Uncle Ernie and his many ailments.

Depending on the condition, you may well be hit with an increased premium cost.

If it makes you feel better, you can always blame your folks.

Just don’t be expected to be invited home for Sunday dinner.

If there is a history of ill health in your family tree, please get in touch before you apply so we can apply to the most sympathetic insurer for that condition. Otherwise you could choose the wrong insurer, pay too much or even have exclusions applied to your policy.

3. Your health history

You probably can’t blame your parents for this one.

Life Insurance is one big bet based around risk or What are the chances you’ll need to claim on your insurance? Well, they go up if you’ve had medical problems in the past – especially with serious conditions like diabetes, cancer, or heart disease.

If that’s the case, don’t assume the insurer will automatically say no. Instead, team up with a broker (I’ll just leave our 500+ excellent reviews here) who will match you with the insurer that’s likely to be most understanding of your medical history.

And, just an FYI: cancer actually isn’t a guaranteed decline. No two cases of cancer are the same, so it really does depend.

By the way, if you are paying an extra premium due to a past health issue, you should review your policy – time is a great healer…including healing your bank balance..

4. Your current health

Not quite so different from point three, but another factor all the same.

Compared to suffering an illness or health condition, your general health (BMI, blood pressure, cholesterol) is something you can actively change. An unhealthy lifestyle will set off red flags for insurers, so take up some exercise, bin the smokes (yes, them again ??), and introduce some more greens to your diet.

5. Mad pastimes

Abseiling. Skydiving. Parachuting. Swimming in shark-infested waters.

Whatever you’re having yerself.

Except, just keep in mind the issue of risk. If your insurer finds out that you have a habit of routinely throwing yourself from a plane with a thin sheet of material strapped to your back, the cost of your Life Insurance is likely to go up.

Bear in mind, too, that if you do have a dangerous hobby and you don’t tell your insurer about it and you have an accident, your claim will likely be declined.

6. Your job

This one’s not too far removed from point number five, either. For most people, your job won’t really play a part, but if you’re an abseiling instructor, a parachuter, a skydiver…you get the idea, you might face a higher premium.

In real terms, if you’re a firefighter, or a Garda, or work in a dangerous environment, shop around. Some insurers might consider your profession to be less risky than the others.

7. Your age

You’d think there’s really nothing you can do about this one. You’re as old as you are when you apply for insurance, right?

Wrong, with some insurers you can backdate your life insurance policy to make you younger. Think Dorian Gray, without the need for the picture.

An unfortunate side-effect of ageing is creeping closer to your expiry date. Bit grim, but true. Life Insurance starts to get much more expensive when you get past 50.

You’ll never be as young as you are right now – so pick up the phone or fill in the form below.

Over to you…

If you’re looking for affordable Life Insurance in Ireland, I can help. I work with all the major insurers in Ireland, so I can get you the best deal and cover for you and your family.

Complete this short form or call me on 05793 20836 and we’ll get it sorted.

Nick McGowan | making life insurance easier

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