Obtaining Life Insurance at 47 Years Old

Life insurance prices at age 47 aren’t terrible, but don’t put it off. Term life insurance, particularly at the lower benefits, is not terribly more than what you would pay in your 30s. Once you hit your late 40s, that roughly 8% increase each year starts to add up.

Why 47-Year-Olds Need Life Insurance

If someone is financially dependent on you, then you probably need life insurance. That person could be a spouse, a child, any other family member or friend who needs your financial assistance.

A way to think about it is to follow the money. If you passed away, who would be left in a position of financial hardship? It could be a child who hasn’t come into adulthood yet.

A spouse might have trouble covering the mortgage and bills without your income. Adult children with disabilities are another common reason we see for life insurance.

Sometimes people buy life insurance so nobody has to scramble for the money to cover their burial or cremation.

Life insurance in your 40’s can serve different functions for people with higher net worth. It can help pay off estate or inheritance taxes. Other people use it for charitable donations.

The Best Types of Life Insurance for 47 Year Olds

The best policy type for you will depend on your reasons for getting life insurance. If you are not sure what type of policy best suits your family, write down all of the reasons you are considering life insurance.

What does your list tell you? Are these reasons permanent or temporary? Permanent reasons may be providing for a spouse after you pass. Temporary would be covering any loss of income between now and when you retire.

If you have both permanent and temporary reasons on your list, you might consider getting two policies. Permanent life insurance to cover the permanent reason. Term life insurance to cover the temporary reason. It sounds like more work, but you will save money.

Permanent Life Insurance

Permanent life insurance lasts for your whole life. Although you will notice most policies have clauses saying the policy matures on your 121st birthday. For most of us, that is not a problem.

Permanent life insurance policies cover several different types: whole life, universal life, indexed universal life, and variable universal life. These all carry different aspects in how they work, but the basis is the same.

They all have cash value accumulation components. These grow over time as you pay your premiums. The cash value allows you to borrow against your insurance policy. It’s a loan that doesn’t ask any questions. It’s also a much lower interest rate than most banks dare to offer.

Permanent policies are best for covering long-term financial responsibilities.

Term Life Insurance

Term life insurance lasts for a set number of years. After which, the policy expires and no longer exists. Unless you add a return of premium rider, you will not see anything back from the insurance company if you survive the term.

The most common term lengths are 10, 20, and 30 years. At 47, you are still eligible for a 30-year term which puts you just over the average life expectancy in the United States.

You can also find more customizable terms. Sometimes you can get them down to a year or two if you need to cover something specific. However, you will need to work with an insurance agent who has access to the companies who offer more customized policies.

Term life insurance is best for covering temporary financial responsibilities. For example, many parents will take out a term policy until their child is finished with school. Other families will use it to cover their mortgage, so their spouse or children aren’t in a position where they have to sell the home immediately.

Burial Insurance

Burial insurance is almost always permanent insurance. While you can occasionally find term policies, it doesn’t make a good fit for the reason people get burial insurance.

Most people get burial insurance because it is difficult to save up the $8,000 needed for a funeral. Emergencies come up, and the money always seems to disappear somewhere.

Burial insurance removes the burden of paying for your funeral from you and your family. Since everyone dies eventually, a term policy just doesn’t make sense for this type of life insurance.

Term Life Insurance Rates for 47 Year Olds

Most people will qualify for standard health classes. Preferred if you are in good health. Regular if you are in average health. Below we are looking at the potential monthly rates for both nonsmoking men and women at preferred and then regular health classes.

Term Life Insurance Rates for 47 Year Old Males 

The first table shows potential monthly premiums for a 47-year-old man at preferred rates.

$50,000 $100,000 $250,000 $500,000 $1,000,000
10-Year $14 $15 $27 $47 $82
20-Year $18 $23 $42 $76 $144
30-Year $34 $37 $73 $136 $255

This is for the same man at regular rates.

$50,000 $100,000 $250,000 $500,000 $1,000,000
10-Year $17 $20 $40 $73 $133
20-Year $23 $32 $66 $121 $229
30-Year $34 $55 $107 $207 $397

Term Life Insurance Rates for 47 Year Old Females

These are for a 47-year-old woman at preferred rates.

$50,000 $100,000 $250,000 $500,000 $1,000,000
10-Year $13 $14 $23 $39 $67
20-Year $14 $18 $33 $58 $107
30-Year $27 $28 $53 $96 $182

Finally, these are for a 47-year-old woman at regular rates.

$50,000 $100,000 $250,000 $500,000 $1,000,000
10-Year $14 $19 $33 $57 $103
20-Year $19 $26 $51 $93 $172
30-Year $27 $40 $82 $154 $291

What is the Longest Term Policy You Can Get?

Traditional term life insurance policies tend to max out at 30-year terms. You might be able to find longer term policies by going through non-traditional life insurance companies. Some companies create specialized plans, but those typically cost more than a whole life insurance policy.

If you need a term policy for longer than 30 years, talk with your insurance agent about whether a permanent life insurance policy would be better. Another option is a term policy with a company who will renew it at the end of the term.

Whole Life Insurance Rates for 47 Year Olds

Whole life insurance is a type of permanent life insurance. It’s the least complicated of all kinds of permanent life insurance. (Except perhaps burial insurance.)

There is a cash value accumulation component builds as you pay your premiums. You can reinvest any dividends back into the cash value with most companies. Anything you build up you can borrow against. Interest rates vary between companies, but they’re low compared to loans at a bank’s rate.

The monthly sample rates below are for non-smokers in good (preferred) health.

$50,000 $100,000 $250,000 $500,000 $1,000,000
Men $103 $194 $475 $934 $1862
Women $93 $170 $414 $813 $1619

This next set is for men and women in average (regular) health.

$50,000 $100,000 $250,000 $500,000 $1,000,000
Men $103 $197 $482 $947 $1887
Women $93 $176 $429 $843 $1679

You will notice at a $50,000 benefit, there is no difference between preferred and regular health classes. Even at $100,000 benefit, the difference is only a few dollars.

Tips on Getting the Best Life Insurance Rates for 47 Year Olds

Life insurance isn’t just something where you pick the first one off the shelf. You want a reputable company, first and foremost. Anything A- or higher on AM Best’s rating list should be trustworthy.

You can find basement bargain companies with super cheap products, but you want the company you are trusting with your family’s financial future to still be around when they need to help out. Lower ratings imply financial instability.

Well rated companies offer low rates. Plus, if you use the following tips, you can find the lowest prices from among these companies who will be around for the long haul.

Talk with an independent agent. Insurance agents come in two types. Captive agents are bound to one company. They work for that company and can only sell the products of that company. Independent agents work for their clients. They can sell the products of multiple companies.

This ability to find the company who best matches the person can save you money. Life insurance companies aren’t public about which health conditions they rate higher than others.

They also don’t go around advertising that they charge women (or men) more than their competition. The most reliable source of this information is your independent insurance agent.

They can choose the company who will underwrite you at the lowest rates, which brings us to the next point.

Tell your insurance agent about any pre-existing medical conditions, or any time you visited the hospital in the last five years. When you are open about your health, your insurance agent can steer you away from the companies who will charge you more for something you couldn’t control.

The Best Companies for Life Insurance for 47 Year Olds

These are our top 3 favorite companies for 47-year-olds. They all have excellent ratings with AM Best. They provide affordable policies. Plus, they have excellent track records of customer service and claims payments.

Company J.D. Power Rating Customer Satisfaction
SBLI A- 4.1 / 5
Protective Life A+ 4.3 / 5
Foresters A 4.1 / 5
Sagicor A- 4.0 / 5


SBLI excels in higher benefits, particularly above $500,000. They offer some of the most competitive rates for both men and women, regardless of your health class. SBLI’s rates for women are some of the lowest that you will find.

With an A- from AM Best, they are in good financial standing.


Protective is our all-around good guy pick. They have competitive rates across all term lengths and benefit amounts for both men and women.

With an A+ from AM Best, they are an outstanding company.


Where SBLI excels in high benefits, Foresters is a champion of lower benefit amounts. They also are nearly unbeatable in short-term lengths. Bonus, their non-medical policies cost less than regular policies from other companies.

Also, Foresters is across the board one of the lowest priced companies for whole life insurance. Coupled with a 20-pay option, it’s hard to do better.

They come in with a solid A from AM Best, putting them in superior financial standing.


Sagicor is our honorable mention. They are another company who does well in the jack-of-all-trades arena.

AM Best gives them an A- for good financial standing.

Other Types of Life Insurance to Consider for 47 Year Olds

At 47, you can still get no exam policies. They cost a little more than regular policies. Although if you are looking at term life insurance, that could be a few dollars more a month.

No exam policies let you skip the medical exam portion of applying for life insurance. It’s a convenient way to get life insurance with less hassle than the traditional route. You will be paying a little more for it. It’s not the best way to save money on your policy, but it will save you time.

Life Insurance for 47 Year Olds – Wrapping it Up 

Talk with an independent agent. Know what type of life insurance will best cover your reasons for buying it in the first place. Shop around and find the company willing to offer you the lowest rates.

Saving money on life insurance isn’t rocket science. It can seem a little overwhelming at first with all the industry jargon. Just have a little patience, and you will find a policy that protects your family at a price your wallet doesn’t flinch at.

Give our agents a call today for free.  they can help you understand your life insurance options, and compare rates for you from the best life insurance companies on the market.

Or, get started using our online quoting engine for quick and easy life insurance quotes for 47 year olds.

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About Jeff Root

is the owner of rootfin.com. He's an independent life insurance agent who has helped 1,000's of consumers purchase life insurance online and over the phone.

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