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Life insurance for 35-year-olds

With new financial obligations, life insurance is a smart option in your 30s.

With all the new assets – and possibly people – in your life, you need to think about life insurance when you reach your mid-30s. Because you're still young and healthy, it's probably the best time to buy and lock in cheap premiums that will quickly disappear if you delay.

What are the types of life insurance for a 35-year-old?

If you're in your 30s, there are a few different types of life insurance tailored to your needs. They are:

Income protection
Life insurance. Sometimes referred to as death cover, this is a policy that pays out if you die during the "term" of your cover. In other words, it only pays out if you die before the policy's expiry age, which is usually around 90 to 100 years old. In your 30s, you're likely to marry, have children and take out a mortgage. Term life insurance can provide financial protection for all these new assets.
Income protection
Income protection. Another very important consideration you need to have in mind is your income. In your 20s, it's likely that you could have got by for a while without an income, but it's likely a different story by the time you're 35. If you needed to take some time off work due to injury or illness, could you still pay all your bills? Income protection can pay you a monthly benefit up to 85% of your income to make sure you still can.
Fracture
TPD. Total and permanent disability insurance provides a lump sum payment if you are seriously injured or ill and become permanently disabled. As you begin to accumulate more in your 30s, TPD can be crucial if something bad happens, covering everything from medical bills and home modifications to paying the mortgage.

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Is my superannuation life insurance enough?

Probably not. If you want enough to cover everything that you currently pay for and ensure that your family continues to enjoy the same lifestyle, then life insurance through super is likely to fall short. In most cases, it will only provide your beneficiaries with between $100,000 and $200,000, which is usually nowhere near enough. Considering that you've likely got a mortgage, school fees, car loans, healthcare and day-to-day expenses to pay, it's generally not enough for the average Australian.

Standalone life insurance, on the other hand, can cover you for more than $1,000,000, which is far closer to the amount your dependants would actually need when you die.

Finder survey: What prompts Australians of different ages to take out life insurance?

Response75+ yrs65-74 yrs55-64 yrs45-54 yrs35-44 yrs25-34 yrs18-24 yrs
Getting older (but not retiring)3.45%4.57%5.81%7.25%4.06%2.29%
Buying a home1.72%0.57%5.23%3.63%10.15%5.05%2.06%
Getting married1.72%2.29%5.23%1.55%5.58%4.59%1.03%
None of the above1.72%4.57%7.56%9.33%7.11%5.96%4.12%
Starting my own business1.72%0.57%0.58%0.51%0.92%3.09%
Retirement2.29%2.91%1.04%2.03%1.83%2.06%
Having a baby1.14%3.49%5.18%11.68%6.88%4.12%
Buying a car0.57%0.52%1.02%0.46%2.06%
Starting a new job0.57%2.91%3.11%2.54%6.88%5.15%
Your children moving out of home0.57%1.74%0.46%
Moving home1.02%1.38%2.06%
Starting university education0.46%
Source: Finder survey by Pure Profile of 1110 Australians, December 2023

How much is life insurance for 35-year-olds?

Life insurance is usually very affordable for 35-year-olds, largely because you're still young and likely have little to no health issues. Factors such as your age, health, job and the amount you're applying for will be your insurer's main considerations when determining your premiums.

But let's talk averages. The longer you put it off, the more expensive taking out cover gets. See the full breakdown of weekly costs of life insurance for different ages and genders below.

Non-smoking female
Age$200,000 policy$500,000 policy$1,000,000 policy
30$3.06$6.70$12.46
40$4.65$9.58$17.94
50$9.92$22.38$41.24
60$28.64$65.09$126.80
Non-smoking male
Age$200,000 policy$500,000 policy$1,000,000 policy
30$4.37$9.59$17.87
40$5.55$12.17$22.85
50$12.72$28.76$53.20
60$44.18$100.58$193.13

We compiled life insurance quotes from 12 Finder partners. These are the average costs for a non-smoker with no medical conditions and earning a gross annual income of $80,000. Quotes researched as of March 2022.

How much life insurance do I need at age 35?

This depends entirely on your personal circumstances, but there are a few simple ways to work it out. Our life insurance calculator can give you an idea of how much you'll need but on average, around $1 to $1.5 million is generally what most people in their 30s need. This is because this is often a new stage in your life when your responsibilities and financial obligations increase.

As a gauge of how much you'll need, it's generally said that your life insurance cover is around 10 times the amount of your annual income. So if you earn $150,000 a year, you'll want to have around a $1.5 million payout.

You can also buy life insurance through an adviser. This will cost you a little more, but that's because they'll do all these bits for you and make sure that you've got cover for the right amount. If that's the way you want to go, you can find a broker here.

Compare life insurance from Australian brands

Name Product Maximum Cover Maximum Entry Age Terminal Illness Benefit Claims Acceptance Rate Average Claim Time Sum Insured
NobleOak Life Insurance
$25,000,000
74
$25,000,000
96.90%
1.1 months
$24,483 million
Our verdict: Finder Life Insurance Award winner for the last 5 years in a row. Good value for money, simple application process and a high claims acceptance rate.
Medibank Life Insurance
$2,500,000
70
$2,500,000
Data not available
Data not available
Data not available
Our verdict: Medibank offers a higher payout limit ($2.5 million) than 15 other providers. Get a 10% discount if you're already a Medibank Health Insurance member.

⭐ Current offer: Save 10% on your first year of Medibank Life Insurance when you apply by 1 July 2024. T&Cs apply.
TAL Accelerated Protection Life Insurance
No set limit
73
Not stated
Data not available
1 months
$249,285 million
Our verdict: One of Australia's leading life insurers. Automatically includes child critical illness cover. Plus, it comes with a level premium option (e.g. costs remain similar as you get older).

⭐ Current offer: Get up to 15% off your TAL Life, Trauma or TPD insurance policy for life - if you have a Body Mass Index (BMI) between 19 and 28 at the time of your application. Offer T&Cs on insurer website apply.
RACWA Life Insurance
$25,000,000
74
$25,000,000
96.90%
1.1 months
$24,483 million
Our verdict: RAC’s maximum death cover limit of $25 million is one of the highest limits you’ll find, including $5 million in TPD insurance. You can get an online quote, but you’ll need to call RAC to get trauma cover. Benefit from added peace of mind with fully underwritten insurance. RAC is also WA-based but services all of Australia.

⭐ Current offer: Get two months free when you apply for two or more RAC Life Insurance covers by 30 June 2024. T&Cs apply.
ahm Life Insurance
$1,500,000
55
$1,500,000
Data not available
Data not available
Data not available
Our verdict: ahm offers a simple application process. You can be approved online or over the phone. There are no medical or blood tests needed.

⭐ Current offer: Get 10% off your first year of ahm Life Insurance when you apply by 1 July 2024. T&Cs apply.
AAMI Life Insurance
$1,500,000
65
$1,500,000
Data not available
3.1 months
$37,768 million
Our verdict: There’s flexibility with AAMI as you can add another adult to your cover, with a competitive limit of $1.5 million. Easy application process with no medical exams.

⭐ Current offer: Take out a new AAMI Life Insurance policy and get $100 eGift card after your first 4 months of cover. T&Cs apply. Ends June 30, 2024.
Suncorp Life Insurance
$1,500,000
65
$1,500,000
Data not available
3.1 months
$37,768 million
Our verdict: Competitive maximum cover limit of $1.5 million. Suncorp lets you change your cover amount by up to $100,000 after a big life event, such as having a baby.

⭐ Current offer: Take out a new Suncorp Life Insurance policy and get $100 eGift card after your first 4 months of cover. T&Cs apply. Ends June 30, 2024.
Real Family Life Cover
$1,000,000
64
$1,000,000
88.90%
2.4 months
$53,238 million
Our verdict: The application is simple; it can be done with 1 phone call and there are no medical exams. But households with larger debts may need more than a $1 million payout.

⭐ Current offer: Get back 10% of the premiums you’ve paid after 1 year.
HCF Life Protect Insurance
$1,500,000
65
$1,500,000
Data not available
Data not available
Data not available
Our verdict: Similar cover to other insurers ($1.5 million). A good discount for HCF members of 10% and an easy initial quote process.

⭐ Current offer: Eligible HCF Members receive 10% premium discount and HCF Thank You rewards.
Zurich Ezicover Life Insurance
$1,500,000
69
$1,500,000
98%
3 months
$24,495 million
Our verdict: Good if you want a cheap policy from a well-regarded insurer – its 98% claims acceptance rate is higher than any other provider on Finder. Zurich keeps things simple: unlike others, it doesn’t go in for optional add-ons such as TPD or trauma cover.

⭐ Current offer: Policy discounts include 10% off for your partner if you sign up for a joint policy. You can also get 5% off income protection if you buy it alongside your life cover.
Insuranceline Life Cover
$1,500,000
65
$1,500,000
90.10%
3.1 months
$37,768 million
Our verdict: Insuranceline pays a lump sum of up to $1.5 million. Once your cover’s in place, you can increase it after a big life event, such as having a baby, without further medical assessment.

⭐ Current offer: Protect your family with an Insuranceline policy and you can go into the draw for a chance to win a $1,000 gift card. New Customers only, T&Cs apply. Competition entries close on 31 July 2024.
Guardian Life Insurance
$1,500,000
64
$1,500,000
88.90%
2.4 months
$53,238 million
Our verdict: Competitive cover limit of $1.5 million. You can add children’s cover of up to $50,000 – most policies don’t include this option.
RACQ Life Insurance
$1,000,000
65
$1,000,000
97%
Data not available
Data not available
One of just 4 insurers to offer children’s insurance. Get cover of up to $50,000 for 7 serious illnesses. RACQ offers 3 ways to save on life insurance: RACQ members get 10% off when buying online. There’s a 5% joint policy saving. Plus you could score 10% off your premiums if you achieve Silver status with AIA Vitality. You can apply for cover online or over the phone.
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Why compare life insurance with Finder?

  • You pay the same price as buying directly from the life insurer.

  • We're not owned by an insurer (unlike other comparison sites).

  • We've done 100+ hours of policy research to help you understand what you're comparing.

What should I be taking into consideration?

When working out how much life insurance you need , make sure you consider everything on the following list:

  • Your mortgage and how much it would cost you to pay it off.
  • Debts you have, including your own tuition fees, car loans and credit cards.
  • School fees so that your child or children can continue to receive the same standard of education.
  • Health insurance and healthcare costs, taking family members' health needs into account.
  • Funeral costs, which usually range from around $4,000 to $15,000.
  • Everyday living expenses, from groceries to fuel and car insurance.

Pros and cons of life insurance at 35 years old

Still on the fence about whether life insurance at 35 is worth it? Check out the pros and cons:

Pros

  • Premiums are cheaper if you get a policy now. On average, you'll pay $14.26 a month for a $1 million policy at 35 and you can choose to stay the same forever. That goes up to a whopping $287.52 if you buy when you're 65.
  • You're covered if the worst happens. Nobody wants to think about it, especially when they're just starting a family and buying a home, but if you die, life insurance makes sure your loved ones can live the life you were building for them.
  • The benefit is tax-free. If your policy covers you for $1 million, that's exactly how much your family will get; the death benefit is tax-free.
  • You can adjust your policy. Just because you're getting it when you're young, doesn't mean you can't adapt or change your policy as your life changes. Life insurers are aware of this and make it very easy to upgrade or downgrade depending on your needs.

Cons

  • It's an added expense. You've probably got lots of other things on your plate to pay for. Life insurance is another expense, albeit an affordable one if you get in early. It really comes down to whether you're willing to risk it or wait until later when it's much more pricey.
  • A medical is often required. If you're young, fit and healthy, this will actually benefit you because you'll attract lower premiums. But if you have a pre-existing condition, you might have to pay more.

Are there any exclusions I need to be aware of?

If you've never had a life insurance policy before, then it's worth pointing out some common life insurance exclusions. They're not startling, but they're worth knowing:

  • Suicide. Insurers usually don't cover you for suicide for the first 13 months of buying a policy.
  • Illegal or criminal activity. Pretty obvious, but if you're injured or killed while taking part in something illegal, the insurer has the right to deny the claim.
  • Drug or alcohol use. You won't be covered for injury or death as a result of drug or alcohol use, unless prescribed by a doctor.
  • War or warlike activity. This may seem a little far-fetched for most, but still worth knowing you won't be covered for death due to civil unrest, riots or war.
  • Sport. This is really only an exclusion if you're consistently taking part in dangerous sports, activities or risky hobbies like skydiving. You could still be eligible for income protection though.

Bottom line

Your 30s are usually when you start making big decisions: starting a family, buying a home, getting married. With all these new financial responsibilities, you need to be prepared for the worst. Luckily, buying life insurance when you're in your 30s is one of the most affordable times to do it. It's something you'll need eventually and the longer you put it off, the more expensive it becomes.

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Frequently asked questions

Written by

Gary Ross Hunter

Gary Ross Hunter is an editor at Finder, specialising in insurance. He’s been writing about life, travel, home, car, pet and health insurance for over 6 years and regularly appears as an insurance expert in publications including The Sydney Morning Herald, The Guardian and news.com.au. Gary holds a Kaplan Tier 2 General Advice General Insurance certification which meets the requirements of ASIC Regulatory Guide 146 (RG146). See full profile

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