Last Updated: November 2020
Life insurance for 51-year-olds is important. Fortunately, it doesn’t have to be expensive either.
Below, we will show you what types of policies you should consider, and how to find the right company and best rates for life insurance at age 51. It is always best to research and compare multiple companies before purchasing a policy.
In this article, we will cover:
- Why 51-Year-Olds Need Life Insurance
- Sample Rates: The Cost of Life Insurance at Age 51
- The Best Life Insurance Companies for 51-Year-Olds
- The Best Types of Life Insurance Policies for 51-Year-Olds
- Tips on Getting the Best Life Insurance Rates for 51-Year-Olds
- The Easiest Way to Apply for Life Insurance at Age 51
Why 51-Year-Olds Need Life Insurance
You need life insurance if someone would financially suffer when you pass away.
That’s it. Whether that person is a spouse, a child, or anybody else, life insurance is a way to take care of someone after you die.
If you don’t have anyone depending on you, you may not need it. Just make sure that you won’t be leaving anybody on the hook for any debts or final expenses.
Sample Rates: The Cost of Life Insurance at Age 51
Life insurance gets more expensive every year. Most companies’ rates increase by around 8% for each year older someone gets. That, on top of the health concerns that start becoming increasingly common for people in their 50s, can spike the rates of an insurance policy.
Rates for Term Life Insurance for 51-Year-Old Males
The following table shows monthly rates for a 51-year-old man who doesn’t smoke and is in relatively good health. The rates reflect a preferred health class. Your rates could be even lower if you are in great health.
The table below is also for a 51-year-old man who doesn’t smoke. The rates reflect a regular (average) health class.
Rates for Term Life Insurance for 51-Year-Old Females
Rates for women are almost always lower than men’s rates. The charts below show rates for a 51-year-old woman who is in good health and does use tobacco products.
A woman in average health may quality for rates in the table below. Keep in mind that there are about a dozen variables that factor into your health class. Your rates may vary from the ones listed here.
What is the Longest Term Policy You Can Get?
Traditional term policies typically do not run beyond 30 years. You may be able to find a non-traditional policy that runs longer. However, at 51, it’s important to consider what your lifespan is likely to be.
Only people oddly comfortable with their own mortality don’t feel some unease contemplating how long they will probably live. But if you are looking for an extra long term policy, it is wise to reexamine your reasons for such a long policy. Would a permanent policy serve the same purpose?
Whole Life Insurance Rates for 51-Year-Olds
Below are monthly sample rates for what 51-year-old non-smoker in relatively good health (preferred) might pay for whole life insurance.
The following table shows sample rates for the same non-smoker who is in average (regular) health.
You will notice that the rates for the $50,000 benefit are the same as someone in preferred health. At lower benefit amounts, some companies don’t make big distinctions between health classes.
The Best Life Insurance Companies for 51-Year-Olds
The best company for you will depend on your health as well as what you are looking for. That being said, we have three favorites that serve most families extremely well. We picked our favorite three for 51-year-olds based on their financial strength, customer service reputation, and affordability.
- Lincoln Financial – Best for term life insurance. They have great rates for higher coverage amounts during your highest income-earning years.
- Northwestern Mutual Life Insurance – Best for whole life insurance. They have strong dividend performance for this age range.
- Prudential Life Insurance – Best for high-risk life insurance. They have underwriting advantages for those with Prostate Cancer, diabetes, and other high risks.
We highly recommend you compare one or more of the companies above to other top life insurance companies. Purchasing a policy from the first company you see can cost you $1000’s.
The Best Types of Life Insurance Policies for 51-Year-Olds
The best policy type for you will depend on what you are trying to cover. Is it for the remainder of your working years? Is it to provide for a spouse? Is it to pay off any final expenses?
The three main categories you can choose from are permanent, term, and burial. Each type serves a different purpose:
- Permanent life insurance covers all your bases. It lasts for life and can be extremely versatile.
- Term life insurance covers a specific reason, like a mortgage, minor child, or working years.
- Burial insurance ensures that your family has enough money to send you off in accordance with your wishes.
Permanent Life Insurance
Permanent life insurance had broader coverage than term insurance. It not only lasts for your entire life, but it also has other components to it that can add a living value.
Out of all the types of permanent life insurance, whole life insurance is the most simple. You don’t have the complexities that come along with other types of permanent policies.
Whole life policies last for life. There is fine print which says the policy matures at age 121, but for most people, that doesn’t present a problem.
There is a cash value accumulation portion built into whole life insurance policies. This part of the policy builds up over time as you pay your premiums. Its main function is the ability to become a loan. Borrowing against your cash value accumulation has lower interest rates than nearly anything you will find at a bank.
You can use it for any reason, from a family vacation to surprise medical expenses. The insurance company holds your death benefit as collateral and deducts any remaining amount left to repay from your death benefit.
If you want a permanent policy to pass something along to your heirs, support a spouse, or cover any final expenses, then whole life insurance is the most straightforward.
Most people buy life insurance to cover end of life expenses. It also contributes to estate planning. You can pay off any debts you leave behind to. Your estate can go to your heirs and not your creditors.
Term Life Insurance
Term life insurance is best used to cover a specific, time-limited purpose. It is more of a fail-safe than permanent life insurance.
You may outlive your term policy. Because the insurance company does not have to pay out of every term policy it offers, it can afford to offer term policies at significantly reduced rates.
Burial Life Insurance
Burial life insurance is an affordable alternative to permanent life insurance. It is a smaller policy, meant only to cover final expenses.
Whereas most life insurance policies start at $50,000, burial insurance starts at $5,000 and caps at $15,000. The coverage lasts for your whole life.
The benefits are relatively small when compared with most term or other permanent policies. This means that burial insurance is surprisingly affordable, even at 51.
Other Options to Consider
You can still get no medical exam life insurance policies at age 51. But that only lasts for a couple more years.
No exam policies cost slightly more than traditional policies. The insurance company is taking on extra risk by not examining your health as thoroughly as they like. However, these policies are much more convenient.
You still have to answer all the medical questions on the application, but you won’t have to take time out of your day to take the medical exam. Nor, if you are like some people, will you have to spend a couple of weeks preparing to ace the life insurance medical exam.
Tips on Getting the Best Life Insurance Rates for 51-Year-Olds
Like any major purchase, you get the best deals by looking at several options. Comparing the quotes you get from dozens of companies gives you the best resources to pick the company best for you.
Instead of calling all those companies yourself and trying to decipher which of their products compares best to the other products you’ve looked at, call an independent agent. Independent agents work with dozens of companies. That means they can find the company with the best underwriting guidelines for your situation.
While life insurance companies offer similar products, the way they classify people varies widely. A person carrying a little extra weight might be table one with Company A and a standard rating with Company B. That could mean a 25% difference in premiums each month.
It isn’t just limited to BMI. Every possible health issue counts. Companies will look at your driving records differently. A family history of thyroid cancer might make one company nervous while another couldn’t care less.
An independent agent can point you toward the right company for you.
Being open about your health can help too. Unless you tell your agent about your high blood pressure (as an example), they won’t know to steer you away from companies who charge more for that.
The Easiest Way to Apply for Life Insurance at Age 51
Every family’s needs are different. First, look at why you are getting life insurance. Then pick the best type of life insurance policy to meet those needs.
You can learn more about your policy options by speaking with one of our independent insurance agents who will be able to explain your options, and how each of them plays out.
Selecting a broker who can search for the best life insurance rates and policies from a number of life insurance providers is essential to make sure you get the best coverage for you and your family.
We work with some of the best life insurance companies on the market to find our clients the best coverage possible for their specific situation.
Give us a call today to speak with an agent, or use our online quote engine to get quick and easy life insurance quotes and compare rates.
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