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If you already own life insurance, you may think your life insurance rate is set in stone, but that’s not the case. Your premium may decrease if you meet certain guidelines for reconsideration.

life insurance ratesRequesting an evaluation of your current life insurance premium is a good idea if your health has significantly improved since the policy went into effect.

Improvements that can lead to better life insurance rates include healthy blood pressure readings, improved cholesterol values, improved liver function and sustained weight loss, among others.

Quitting smoking can also lead to lower life insurance rates. Read on for more details.

Key Takeaways

  • Life insurance rates are not set in stone; you can request a reevaluation to get a better rate.
  • Losing weight, improving blood pressure and cholesterol and quitting smoking are all steps that can result in cheaper life insurance rates.
  • In rare situations requesting a reevaluation can mean that your rates will actually go up; make sure it’s the right move before you apply.

How can you lower your life insurance rates?

“If you currently own a life insurance policy and certain factors of your health have significantly improved — for example, you’ve overcome a chronic illness, stopped smoking or lost a substantial amount of weight — it makes sense to review your policy with your insurance agent to see if you qualify for lower premiums,” says Marvin H. Feldman, president and CEO of the LIFE Foundation.

Your timing for requesting a reevaluation is important. Most policies will be eligible for reevaluation after they have been in force for a year. However, smokers will generally need to be nicotine-free longer before they will be eligible for a policy rate review – anywhere from two to five years, depending on the insurance company.

If you think your chances of obtaining a better life insurance price are good, what’s the next step?

How to prepare for a life insurance rate reevaluation

If your agent agrees that it’s time for a reevaluation, you’ll be required to undergo a new medical exam. The LIFE Foundation offers some tips for the exam, which may help you secure the lower life insurance rates you’re after:

  • Don’t smoke for three hours before your exam. Smoking tends to constrict artery walls and can elevate your blood pressure.
  • Don’t drink any alcohol for 48 hours before your exam. Alcohol can elevate your blood pressure and adversely affect your blood test.
  • Limit caffeine consumption for 48 hours before your exam. Caffeine can elevate your blood pressure and increase your pulse rate.
  • Bring a list of medications you take. It can be cross-checked with your blood test results.
  • Don’t exercise the day before your exam. Exercise, especially cardiovascular workouts, can cause inaccurate elevations in cholesterol levels.
  • Fast for 12 hours before the exam. Some foods and beverages can adversely affect your blood or urine tests.
  • Schedule the exam at a time when you’ll be relaxed. Avoid scheduling the exam at a hectic time of the day because the more relaxed you are, the better your chances of getting a lower blood pressure reading.

Can a reevaluation make your life insurance rates go up?

If a life insurance reevaluation finds that you don’t qualify for a reduction of rates, at least you tried to save money. Even if the results of your medical test are disappointing, you won’t be hit with a higher life insurance price – you will continue to pay the rate for the original policy. 

However, there are very rare cases in which a life insurance reevaluation could backfire — specifically, if the reevaluation reveals that you lied on the application for your original policy.

What can you do if you’re denied a lower rate?

If you feel you had valid reasons to ask for a reconsideration but were denied a lower premium, there is some recourse. Keep in mind that, ultimately, life insurance companies are competing against one another for your business.

If you disagree with a reevaluation denial, perhaps it’s time to look elsewhere.

“If you feel the company’s response is unacceptable, ask the agent to shop the market with a special risk broker to determine if another company may offer a more favorable rate,” Feldman says.

While a policyholder can appeal a company’s decision to a higher person in the underwriting department, it may simply be easier to switch life insurance companies in order to get a better price.

To assess your life insurance needs, use’s life insurance advisor tool, and review’s best life insurance companies ranking of how top carriers rate on customer satisfaction.

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