Scottish Friendly reveals that ‘important’ over 50s life insurance could become unaffordable if financial pressures continue to grow

According to new research conducted by Scottish Friendly, individuals aged over 50 in the UK are struggling with the rising cost of insurance with nearly two-thirds (63%) worried about how much they are paying in premiums.

Tabitha Lambie | Editorial assistant, Barcadia Media
8th February 2023
Old Person
"Coping with rising premiums is particularly challenging for individuals on fixed incomes who have fewer options to boost their earnings."
- Jill Mackay, Scottish Friendly head of marketing

The study found that nearly half (48%) of the 1000 respondents are paying higher insurance premiums than they were a year ago. Of these premiums, the most common types of insurance among over 50s were home or contents insurance (80%) and buildings insurance (62%), followed by life insurance (34%) which was typically held in the form of whole of life cover (33%) or over 50s life insurance (31%).

When asked why they had purchased a life insurance policy, the majority (57%) said it was to cover the cost of their funeral, while 46% said it was to help provide financial support for their family if they passed away.

However, despite nearly two-thirds (63%) recognising that an over 50s life insurance play has become ‘more important’ due to the financial pressures families are currently under due to the ongoing cost of living crisis, 46% of respondents felt that the value of their plan will be less than they hoped.

But the alternative, putting away more money for their family in the event of their death, is an even less hopeful option given that most people are likely to be on fixed incomes as shown by the fact that only 27% of Scottish Friendly’s survey respondents are in full-time employment.

According to this survey, more than one in five (22%) are hoping to find ways to boost their regular income in the next six months. Paid overtime (9%), second jobs (4%), salary increases (3%), and selling of investments/stocks (3%) are expected to be the most likely sources.

However, if the pressures on income continue to grow, thousands of over 50s will potentially be at risk of becoming unable to meet their monthly premiums.

Commenting on these findings, Jill Mackay, Scottish Friendly head of marketing, has said:

“Insurance inflation is a real concern for many over 50s and is adding to their woes during the cost of living crisis. However, despite the short-term pressure many over 50s are under, it is reassuring that plenty are taking appropriate action to support their families in the event of their death.

“By paying regularly into an over-50s life insurance plan, they are doing all they can to help protect their families and ease any potential financial pressures further down the line.

“There is also more support now from providers with unique products that offer customers greater choice and flexibility, and help reduce the risks if people do miss a payment.”

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