How do you monitor your health? Or do you monitor your health at all? According to interesting new research from the UK’s leading comparison site MoneySuperMarket, it reveals that 33% of Brits are currently using a smart device in order to monitor their health. Interestingly, this data being captured could in fact help to identify any possible health issues that affect the way life insurance premiums are calculated. This begs the question, is it time we all start actively monitoring our health, and should we reward those with good health by offering lower premiums?
The number of connected wearable devices is set to rise even further next year, with research suggesting that millennials are most likely to use wearable tech. As this trend continues to rise, there are various insurance providers such as Vitality who are using this data to calculate premiums. With three in four millennials stating they would be comfortable sharing this data, could we see a shift in the way we take out these life insurance policies? Is this a fairer way of determining an individual’s health? It certainly seems to be the case.
The research also shows that half of those surveyed have both a life insurance policy and a wearable tech device which monitors health, but just one in ten would be happy to take out a policy based solely on the data from their health monitor.
The majority of Brits (65 per cent) would still prefer to take out a life insurance policy via the traditional methods of questionnaires and forms.
So, whilst it may not be a particularly attractive option to the older generations, it’s an option that appeals to the millennial segment and we predict a certain future shift towards the use of this data for life insurance premiums.
For those who lead an active, healthy lifestyle, this would certainly work in their favour and in most cases, bring the premium down.
However, smokers for example can pay up to 50% more for their policy than non-smokers and it may not be an appealing option to those who live an unhealthier lifestyle. There’s a great argument here that wearable tech having an influence on the cost of your policy could actually work as a great incentive for people to give up smoking and improve their overall health and wellbeing. We know that here in the YCB office we’re big fans of wearable tech, and use these to monitor our daily steps and encourage ourselves to take a quick walk on lunch to improve our activity.
Consumer affairs expert at MoneySuperMarket, commented: “Wearables are beginning to have a significant impact on the life insurance market. They build on the well-established premise that a person’s lifestyle and habits play a big role in determining how much they will pay for cover. The logic is simple: use a device to demonstrate your healthy lifestyle and get lower premiums in return. Understandably, many of us shy away from something that confirms our own mortality, but it is crucially important to have cover in place so that bereaved dependants at least have financial resources to call upon.”
We couldn’t agree more, anything that increases your fitness and health has got to be viewed as a positive. This could be the encouragement many of us need to hit our daily steps target and take more time to think about our health in these busy lives we lead. It can often be overlooked as day-to-day life gets in the way, but perhaps wearable tech could change this for many. Head over to MoneySuperMarket for an in-depth analysis about wearable technology and how this could influence how people insure themselves.