Still in that ‘new year, new you’ mood? Here at LifeDirect, we’re all about new beginnings and fresh starts. And when it comes to those elusive New Year’s resolutions, we’re in your corner.
Here’s how we can help, according to our friendly insurance adviser Brad Gibbons.
“Maybe your New Year’s resolution is to take care of your health. You might want to exercise more, lose weight, or keep your well-being in tip-top shape with routine health checks and screenings,” says Brad.
“In that case, some insurers offer good health incentives and rewards. If you’re interested in knowing more, give us a call and we can have a look at your options and help you find a suitable solution.”
“If you’re a smoker and looking at kicking the habit (including vaping), potential premium savings may boost your motivation,” says Brad.
“Smokers generally face higher premiums than non-smokers when applying for life insurance, sometimes even two or three times higher. But even if you were a smoker when you got cover, if you give up smoking, and have remained a non-smoker for 12 months , you may become eligible for non-smoker premiums. There are savings to be had through a lower, non-smoker rate premium.”
“At LifeDirect, we usually complete regular reviews, and one of the questions we ask smokers is whether they have quit for at least a year. If they have, we’ll tell the insurer right away, so our client can start saving on premiums as soon as possible. Or we’ll make a note to touch base again when the 12 months have passed.”
“The Body Mass Index (or BMI) can be an important factor when applying for insurance,” says Brad.
“While it’s not necessarily the most accurate measurement of body fat or physical health, some insurers look at the weight and height ratios to calculate premiums. On the other hand, other insurers don’t charge BMI-related costs, so if you’re interested in exploring your options, we’re here to help.
“What if you got cover with a high BMI and now your goal is to lose some weight? Again, premium savings can be an extra incentive. Once you achieve your goal, we can talk to the insurer to get a BMI related premium loading removed – for good. And if you want us to be part of your support team, let us know: we can give you a call every few months or so to chat about how you’re tracking.”
“With inflation and rising interest rates putting pressure on budgets, you may be looking for ways to save some money,” says Brad.
“If so, it’s important to remember that insurance is not a cost, but a safeguard. Plus, by cancelling your policy, you’re unlikely to get the same level of protection if you take out another policy in the future, because any medical issue you may have had since taking out your policy will be classified as a ‘pre-existing condition’ and you may not be able to get cover for that condition or event in the new policy”.
“That said, the key thing is to check that you’re still getting good value for money. For example, if you’ve paid down a substantial chunk of your mortgage, you may be able to reduce your level of life insurance cover. We’re here to help you find those cost-saving opportunities, so that your cover is fit for purpose and for your budget.”
Protecting your finances
“The end of the year and beginning of a new one is a time of self-reflection, an opportunity take stock and refocus. So, in many ways, it’s no different from what we do in our yearly insurance reviews,” says Brad.
“If they want to, LifeDirect’s clients can contact us anytime to review their insurance policies, and check that they’re still aligned with their needs. Once a year is a good rule of thumb, but it can be more often, if something important happens in their life.
“For example, you may have tied the knot, had a baby, changed jobs… Absolutely anything can happen in a year, and an insurance review can be a great way to make adjustments and move forward with fresh confidence. It doesn’t need to happen at the beginning of the year, but why not take advantage of that New Year’s motivation?”
The bottom line?
Our quote compare tool is great, but it's just one part of what we can do help Kiwis protect their future. We have a team of friendly insurance advisers on hand for any questions and support you might need.
Disclaimer: Please note that the content provided in this article is intended as an overview and as general information only. While care is taken to ensure accuracy and reliability, the information provided is subject to continuous change and may not reflect current developments or address your situation. Before making any decisions based on the information provided in this article, please use your discretion and seek independent guidance.