Ron Attias is a licensed insurance broker. He has no particular loyalty to any one insurance company, so he is able to shop all major insurance carriers. This means that you always get the BEST plan at the LOWEST price. Each plan can be customized to fit your specific healthcare needs and budget.

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Leslie Kasperowicz holds a BA in Social Sciences from the University of Winnipeg. She spent several years as a Farmers Insurance CSR, gaining a solid understanding of insurance products including home, life, auto, and commercial and working directly with insurance customers to understand their needs. She has since used that knowledge in her more than ten years as a writer, largely in the insur...

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Reviewed by Leslie Kasperowicz
Farmers CSR for 4 Years Leslie Kasperowicz

UPDATED: Jul 9, 2019

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Most people think that a million dollar life insurance policy is too extravagant and costly. The first question you may even ask is, “do I really need a million dollar life insurance policy?” The answer depends on so many factors, such as your current lifestyle, income, dependents, and debts, to name just a few.

Since many of us purchase life insurance to protect our loved ones should the unthinkable occur, the other question to ask is, “if I wasn’t around, for how long could my loved ones survive with a million dollar life insurance?” I will try to cover some of the answers, provide sample rates, and discuss who really needs a million dollar life insurance policy.

Who Should Consider a Million Dollar Life Insurance?

Most financial advisors today recommend buying life insurance 7-10 times your yearly income. If you make 50k-75k, you can easily be in the $500,000-$750,000 policy range. All insurance carriers have an “income factor table.”

This guide helps to evaluate the amount of insurance that is accepted in relation to your earned yearly income. It’s based on the insured’s age multiplied by a specific factor, which is determined by the insurance company. For example, up to age 40, you can buy your yearly income multiplied by 35.

If you are 50, you can only get your income times 20, etc. So in reality, if you are in your 30’s and make 50k per year, have a young family and a mortgage, you are the typical candidate for a million dollar life insurance.

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Cost of Living Statistics

When you buy a million dollar life insurance you need to take into account the cost of living effect on the future value of the million dollars you’re buying now. In other words, you may think a million dollars is too much until you understand that it might be a lot now, but in 20 years, it may be equivalent to half that (because of inflation and the ever-rising cost of living).
Let’s look at cost of living statistics:

When you take these figures under consideration, one thing is for sure – it will go up, and everything will be more expensive.

How Much Does a Million Dollar Life Insurance Policy Cost?

This will greatly depend on the type of policy and the underwriting factors.

Type of Policies

There are 2 types of life insurance from which to choose:

  • Term life insurance: The easiest policy to understand, also called “pure insurance.” You buy a policy for a specific “term” which is a length of time (such as 10, 15, 20 or 30 years), with 20 years being the most common term. If you die within that time frame, your dependents will receive the death benefit, and if not, you may still convert it or renew it when the term is expired (but this is usually pretty expensive). Term life is a lot cheaper when compared to a whole life policy, and a few may argue that you buying a term and investing the rest is the way to go. They also have level benefits and premium, which means the premium and the face value amount stay the same for the length of the term. It also provides the peace of mind that you get when you have young ones to know that if you won’t be there, they will be cared for. You may need the most face benefits you can afford when you’re young because that is when it’s the worst to lose you: when you are still young and have a mortgage. You may not need this financial support after 20 or 30 years, so term may be best.
  • Permanent life insurance: Also called “whole life” or a “cash value policy.” They come in three flavors: whole, universal, and variable life insurance. The policy premium you pay every month will pay for the life insurance policy, and a portion of it will build a cash value that you can borrow against (tax-free) in the future. These policies are very expensive when compared to the term ones. They don’t have an expiration date and the face amount and premiums are guaranteed to stay the same.

Underwriting Factors

Every insurer has unique underwriting criteria they use to determine the rate you will pay for your policy. As a rule of thumb, the greater risk you pose to the insurer the higher your rates will be, it’s as simple as that. This isn’t a coffee shop where everybody pays the same price for the same drink.

However, that is not to say that if you are a diabetic, for instance, you can’t get a better rate with company B. The trick is to know which company is diabetic-friendly and to go through their underwriting and get the best rate, instead of going to company A who may give you a table rating or decline your policy altogether. There are a few factors that are pretty much standard with most carriers:

  • Gender
  • Age
  • Health history
  • Family history
  • Occupation
  • Lifestyle

Here is another great post explaining more about the factors that affect your life insurance quote.

How to Qualify for a Million Dollar Life Insurance Policy

To qualify for a million dollar life insurance policy or more, you would have to go through a fully underwritten plan, which means a full medical exam that includes blood work and a urine sample. If you have any other health conditions, such as diabetes, high cholesterol, or anxiety, you will need to fill out other forms regarding your condition, and also provide doctor’s records.

At the time of this article, there is one company called Principle Life Insurance that offers a no exam million dollar life insurance.  However, you will pay more for the convenience of not taking the exam and the catch is that you must be in good health.  In my opinion, if you are in good enough health to get this policy, why don’t you go ahead and do the exam and get the best possible (lower) rate?

The best way to save on life insurance rates is very simple: if you are healthy, stay healthy, and if you’re not, work hard to get there. If you are a smoker and you want to get the best rates, you will have to kick this habit or pay a 2 to 3 times higher premium. I don’t have a secret formula to save on that. If you’re overweight, you will have to eat a few vegetables and keep your weight within range to qualify for the best rate.

If you are not in the best of health, you may qualify for a standard or substandard rating, which means you will pay more because you pose a higher risk to the insurance company. If this is within your budget, you can still go ahead and apply.

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Million Dollar Whole Life Insurance Sample Monthly Rates

Male Whole Life $1,0000,000

 Company Age 30 Age 40 Age 50 Age 60
 Minnesota Life  $773  $1162  $1770  $2995
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Female Whole Life $1,0000,000

 Company Age 30 Age 40 Age 50 Age 60
 Minnesota Life  $689  $1001  $1499  $2488
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Million Dollar Term Life Insurance Sample Monthly Rates

Male 10-year Term $1,0000,000

 Company Age 30 Age 40 Age 50 Age 60
 Protective  $21.29  $29.60  $74.88  $214.36
 Mutual of Omaha  $22.92  $30.08  $83.30  $250.43
 AIG  $23.70  $37.54  $90.31  $229.57
 Principal  $24.50  $29.75  $78.31  $227.55
 North American  $25.08  $33.88  $79.64  $223.08
 AXA Equitable  $28.64  $38.90  $79.09  $227.00
 SBLI  $29.58  $38.28  $77.95  $223.59
 Banner  $30.62  $41.12  $80.50  $225.75
 Transamerica  $30.10  $45.58  $91.16  $233.06
 Lincoln  $32.03  $40.25  $75.51  $221.29
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Female 10-year Term $1,0000,000

 Company Age 30 Age 40 Age 50 Age 60
 Protective  $18.84  $26.20  $63.01  $139.92
 Mutual of Omaha  $20.30  $29.05  $68.43  $162.92
 AIG  $20.24  $32.35  $68.68  $160.37
 Principal  $21.00  $27.56  $65.19  $147.44
 North American  $23.32  $31.24  $65.56  $151.80
 AXA Equitable  $23.51  $32.92  $68.68  $150.91
 SBLI  $20.31  $28.92  $64.55  $145.73
 Banner  $20.12  $28.00  $65.19  $147.00
 Transamerica  $23.22  $36.12  $71.38  $190.06
 Lincoln  $28.17  $35.00  $65.01  $143.50
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Male 20-year Term $1,0000,000

 Company Age 30 Age 40 Age 50 Age 60
 Protective  $34.99  $51.99  $143.84  $400.83
 Mutual of Omaha  $37.80  $59.68  $146.30  $481.42
 AIG  $36.68  $54.84  $146.53  $418.14
 Principal  $38.94  $56.00  $149.63  $422.63
 North American  $39.16  $60.28  $150.92  $427.24
 AXA Equitable  $40.61  $60.28  $159.46  $425.36
 SBLI  $35.24  $56.03  $147.73  $457.62
 Banner  $36.67  $59.50  $146.30  $418.13
 Transamerica  $39.56  $69.66  $147.92  $415.38
 Lincoln  $49.00  $70.00  $147.70  $418.78
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Female 20-year Term $1,0000,000

 Company Age 30 Age 40 Age 50 Age 60
 Protective  $29.43  $43.94  $103.55  $272.92
 Mutual of Omaha  $31.67  $51.80  $119.18  $324.80
 AIG  $30.62  $52.25  $117.12  $309.15
 Principal  $32.16  $47.25  $108.94  $286.13
 North American  $32.12  $48.84  $113.08  $283.80
 AXA Equitable  $32.92  $52.58  $116.71  $292.84
 SBLI  $29.67  $44.28  $104.57  $272.92
 Banner  $29.75  $47.25  $108.50  $286.12
 Transamerica  $30.96  $55.90  $116.10  $323.36
 Lincoln  $38.50  $53.38  $108.50  $283.33
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Male 30-year Term $1,0000,000

 Company Age 30 Age 40 Age 50 Age 60
 Protective  $59.63  $101.72  $263.09  NA
 Mutual of Omaha  $63.18  $113.05  $296.80  NA
 AIG  $60.90  $102.42  $256.39  NA
Principal  $65.11  $105.88  $265.13  NA
 North American  $62.92  $105.16  $277.64  NA
 Prudential  $66.15  $112.05  $278.55  NA
 SBLI  $60.20  $102.75  $257.61  NA
 Banner  $60.67  $105.87  $262.50  NA
 Transamerica  $60.20  $109.22  $286.38  NA
 Lincoln  $79.10  $119.87  $259.26  NA
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Female 30-year Term $1,0000,000

 Company Age 30 Age 40 Age 50 Age 60
 Protective  $48.87  $80.43  $190.48  NA
 Mutual of Omaha  $50.93  $89.43  $204.93  NA
 AIG  $48.79  $83.39  $189.78  NA
 Principal  $54.67  $84.18  $176.75  NA
 North American  $52.36  $84.92  $202.84  NA
 Prudential  $56.25  $93.15  $217.35  NA
 SBLI  $48.63  $81.35  $188.27  NA
 Banner  $48.86  $81.84  $191.97  NA
 Transamerica  $48.15  $89.44  $235.64  NA
 Lincoln  $59.68  $85.75  $189.79  NA
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*All rates quoted on this page are for a super-preferred healthy individual who does not use tobacco. Monthly rates are updated as of March 2017 and are subject to underwriting approval.*

Where to Find the Best Rate for a Million Dollar Life Insurance

It’s probably the simplest of all. Find a broker that represents at least a few insurance companies, if not most of them. If you work with an agent who only represents one company, you are not doing yourself any favors. You will be presented with only one option for a policy, and one option usually leads to an expensive one. You can use the quoter on this page to run the quotes for yourself.