Why do insurance companies raise premiums? Because insurance companies are businesses in and of themselves, they are out to make as much profits as possible for their owners and stakeholders. One of their tactics for achieving this ultimate goal is to look for tiny statistical nuances that can predict the likelihood that someone will file claim—and that can justify charging higher premiums.
There are quite a lot of reasons why your insurance premiums may rise. But your insurance agent or company may have neglected to inform you of these reasons when you were signing up for your policy, or you have forgotten them over the years. Here are seven common reasons why insurance companies raise their premiums.
7 Reasons Why Insurance Companies Raise Premiums
1. Your credit score is worsening
Insurance companies know that people with low credit scores are more likely than those with high credit scores to get into accidents or face other challenges that may prompt them to fall back on their insurance funds. So, they charge more when they can. This explains why you should pay close attention to your credit score. The lower your credit score, the higher your premiums.
However, the practice of looking at credit ratings to determine insurance premiums is a bit controversial. There’s no rock-solid link between credit scores and timely bill payments. But since most insurance companies must capitalize on something, they assume there’s a strong link.
2. You often face risky situations
Insurance companies know that the more frequently you face risky situations, the higher your chances of getting involved in accidents and other mishaps. So, they raise your premiums as the risk increases. That’s their way of preparing for that awkward moment when you come calling for your insurance funds.
For example, your insurance company can keep a tab on your driving record. Your record of moving violations can increase not only your auto insurance premium, but also your life and health insurance premium. Of course, if you get involved in an auto accident, all three policies will come in handy. So, insurers permit just two moving violations as their cut off point for raising your premiums, while others permit three.
3. You are into a high risk job
If, for example, you have health insurance through work, your rates might be increased based on the average risk faced by your colleagues at work. You may not necessarily be exposed to the same risks, but the insurance company usually assumes that you are facing the same risks and that you may come calling for their support anytime soon. If your colleagues at work tend to be older and prone to illness—and submit a lot of claims—your health insurance premiums will be higher than they would be if your colleagues were younger and healthier.
4. You are overweight or obese
This applies more to health and life insurance. It’s common knowledge that being overweight or obese can lead to a wide range of health issues that could shorten your life.
If you have a body mass index that is more than is expected for a healthy individual, your insurance company will raise your premiums. A study by eHealthInsurance.com revealed that an individual with a body mass index of 30 or above pays 22 percent more than someone with a body mass index of 25 does.
5. Your hobbies are risky
If you engage in skydiving, hang gliding, rodeo riding or car racing, your life insurance rates will most likely be on the high side. If you are wondering why your insurers are interested in knowing your hobbies while you were signing up, now you know. They know some hobbies place you at higher risk of losing your life than others, and they want to know if you engage in those high-risk activities.
6. You have clocked 50
When you are age 50 and above, you should expect all your insurance premiums to rise. Auto insurance, health insurance, life insurance, and what have you. You are considered an older driver who’s more prone to accidents. You are more prone to coming down with a wide range of ailments. And you are getting closer to your death. So, the older you grow above 50, the higher your insurance premiums.
7. Your education
Insurers found a correlation between education and claims. Because well-educated people tend to come up with fewer claims, there is a general belief—among insurers—that education comes with some elements of caution. So, for each level of education you miss, your insurance premium will rise a bit.
In conclusion, some of these reasons might sound very flimsy to you, but insurance companies see them as strong points.