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What age is best to get life insurance?

There's no particular age or stage of life when life insurance is the most essential. Getty Images

Life insurance can protect your loved ones in multiple ways. From providing an income to covering funeral costs to paying down your debts, it helps ensure those you care about will be provided for after you die.

There are several types of life insurance to choose from at many different price points, as well as riders that can help you customize your policy to fit your needs. So, wherever you are in life, life insurance is worth considering. But is there one particular age that's best? In this article, we explore what life insurance needs might look like at different ages and how to determine when you should apply.

Begin your life insurance search by requesting a free quote here.

What age is best to get life insurance?

The short answer is: Younger is often better.

When you're younger, you're likely in better health, which can lower your life insurance cost because providers see you as less risky to insure. Whether you get a whole or term policy, your premiums will be fixed, so they won't increase as you age.

So, the sooner you lock in a policy, the more affordable it's likely to be. If you can't afford all the coverage you want right now, you can always get a cheap term policy and convert it to a whole policy later on.

The longer answer is: It's never too late to get life insurance.

While you may qualify for better coverage at a lower rate while you're young, that doesn't mean you should forgo life insurance if you're older. It can still provide many benefits, and options like no-exam policies can help those who might not otherwise qualify for a policy to get one.

Life insurance is worth exploring later in life as a means of paying for end-of-life expenses and leaving a legacy for loved ones. You can also use it while you're alive to pay for things like medical bills (if you get a whole life policy).

Times to consider life insurance

Traditionally, certain seasons of life tend to bring certain obligations. For example, in your 20s, you may begin repaying your student loans while working an entry-level job. In your 30s, you may get married, buy a house and start a family. In your 40s and 50s, your kids may leave the nest and you may start daydreaming about your upcoming retirement.

But everyone's life is different, so there's no particular age or stage of life when life insurance is worth it more than other times. Instead, it's wise to consider a policy when you reach milestones like:

  • Getting your first job
  • Getting a raise
  • Getting married
  • Having children
  • Buying a home
  • Getting divorced
  • Caring for an aging parent

Furthermore, it's important to revisit your life insurance coverage at each of these milestones. The coverage amount that made sense for you as a single person in your 20s might not be enough for a growing family a decade later. Conversely, you might pay off significant debt, such as a mortgage, by your 50s, reducing the costs your loved ones must cover after you die.  

Your policy should evolve to meet your needs, so review it regularly to ensure it's doing just that. 

The bottom line

Protecting your loved ones from financial distress is worth it. While you'll likely get better coverage at a lower rate when you're younger, there are still plenty of reasons to get life insurance, whatever your age. You just must be conscious of the fact that your age can affect your premium.

To find the best policy for you, do your homework by researching life insurance providers, getting multiple quotes and comparing them against your needs. You can get started by requesting a free price estimate now.

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