How Your Hobbies Can Affect Life Insurance Rates
As individuals, our choices have a bigger impact on insurance rates than we may believe. If we add a trampoline to our back yard, be prepared to pay more or even be denied homeowners’ insurance. Get multiple traffic citations and you’ll likely pay more for auto insurance. The same can be said for life insurance. If we decide to participate in risky or hazardous hobbies, odds are our life insurance premiums will escalate.
What are some hobbies that may raise flags with a life insurance provider? Here are a few:
- Scuba Diving – Scuba diving exposes participants to some real threats. There is the possibility of “the bends” (Decompression Sickness), nitrogen narcosis, arterial air embolism and drowning. Becoming a Certified Scuba Diver takes hours of training but insurance companies still consider it risky behavior.
- Skydiving – The United States Parachuting Association says that out of over 3 million jumps in 2010, there were only 21 deaths. They point out then, that the odds of dying in a parachute jump is just .0007%. In addition, they would suggest the odds of dying in a car accident (per 10,000 miles) is .0167%. Is parachuting safer than driving a car then? Your insurance company probably doesn’t think so.
- Snow Sports – Even though they are seasonal, winter sports like snow boarding and snow skiing can be considered risky hobbies, resulting in higher life insurance premiums.
- Motorsports – Racing any form of motor vehicle increases your chances for death or injury. Car, motorcycle or even boat racing is certain to increase life insurance costs.
- Hot Air Ballooning – While skydiving has been shown to be as much as seven times as deadly as hot air ballooning, there are far more participants in skydiving. Seventy people perished in hot air balloon related crashes in the 50 years between 1964 and 2014.
- Hang Gliding – What doesn’t sound dangerous about soaring into the sky in a kite? Check that box on a life insurance application and your premiums may soar as well.
- White Water Rafting – White water rafting can be thrilling, exhilarating and physically challenging. It also can be risky. If you regularly raft or kayak in swift moving water, your life insurance company needs to know.
How will your life insurance provider know you participate in a dangerous hobby? Because you are required to disclose it on your application. If you don’t, you could be denied benefits should death occur.
Whether you participate in dangerous hobbies or not, you are still probably interested in securing affordable life insurance coverage. We can help. As independent insurance agents, we can seek out companies who provide more affordable protection for even high-risk activities. Contact us to discuss your hobbies and your life insurance needs.