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Top tips for Shopping for Illness and Life Insurance

In today’s world of price comparison sites, and with everyone from your Post Office to your local supermarket offering to sell you the ‘cheapest insurance’ on the planet, shopping for insurance can be a real minefield. But especially when it comes to illness and life insurance quotes, there are few bigger decisions you’ll have to make, with the future health and security of both you and your family on the line. Choosing the right insurance policy for you doesn’t have to be a difficult operation, however, simply follow these ten top tips and make sure you’re properly covered today.

1. Shop around:
This might sound obvious, but with so many different outlets claiming to offer what seem like amazing deals, it’s worth taking a little bit of extra time to read the small print and make sure the policy you choose really is the right one for you. With online price comparison sites, this process has never been easier.

2. Get checked out:
Most insurance and life insurance policies will be conditional of a health check, which will affect your premiums. However, it’s well worth getting yourself checked out before you go to your broker, so you can tailor your search to suit your needs. If serious hereditary illness runs in your family, for example, you might want to look for critical illness cover.

3. Don’t pay over the odds:
The fact is, if you’re not careful, you can end up paying higher premiums for cover you don’t necessarily need, which, when you’re young with a family to support and serious debts, can be off-putting. You can reduce your premiums with term life insurance which protects you for a specified period of time keeping your family secure, but without breaking the bank.

4. Act your age:
There’s a host of different insurance packages out there catering for all different age groups. By getting a package that’s intended for your age bracket, for example over or under 50 years old, you can make sure the premiums and cover and most suitable for you.

5. Protect your assets:
When some standard life insurance policies mature, the money paid out won’t be ring-fenced to go towards specific things. If you want to make sure certain investments are safeguarded for your family, think about taking out a policy to suit. Mortgage life insurance, for example, is paid out directly to the mortgage lender on your death.

6. Don’t over-protect:
In the UK, we’re lucky enough to have an excellent free National Health Service, which is certainly adequate for the treatment of most illnesses, so use it. Unless you’re flush for cash, don’t unnecessarily take out broad health insurance policies. More tailored critical illness plans can still cover you for private care in the case of a more serious problem.

7. Protect your legacy:
Think about what your insurance is for. Do you want to protect your assets for the next generation? Do you want a cash payment to cover funeral costs? Do you want your policy to accrue value over time? These are important questions: if you choose term insurance over full cover, your policy will not pay out at the end of the term if it expires. Make sure you know what you’re choosing.

8. Get trustworthy advice:
Online comparison sites are a great place to start when shopping for insurance, but they shouldn’t necessarily be where you finish. Make sure you seek expert advice from a trusted insurance broker before making any final decisions.

9. Non-essential doesn’t mean not important:
Life insurance policies can often be dismissed as ‘non-essential’, that is, you don’t have to have them, legally or morally. But this doesn’t mean they’re not extremely important. If you want to protect your family when you’ve passed away, you need the right cover.

10. Read the small print:
This may sound obvious, but make sure you know exactly what you’re getting. You don’t want to pay over the odds for a policy and then find it doesn’t cover certain ways of dying (which sounds callous, but not all policies cover everything) or types of illness. Read the small print, and read it again.

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