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04 Sep 2017
5 Mins Read

I'm Young. I'm Never Sick (and 3 Other Bad Excuses for Not Getting Insured)

Expensive? Unnecessary? Scary? Relax: insurance doesn't have to be any of these things.

There are moments that you'll treasure forever, where you think, "I'm a grown-up!" Your first date. Travelling alone. Graduating from uni. Passing your driving test. You know, the stuff you'll inevitably Instagram with a tacked-on #LiveLaughLove or three.

Then there are those other moments that signal you're an Adult with a capital A — only less social-post worthy, and loaded with more responsibility. Paperwork. Budgeting. And I can't think of an example more fitting than getting your insurance in order.

As a millennial with a chronic allergy to paperwork, budgeting and big questions on mortality, I get it. Insurance can seem scary. Here are some of the thoughts I've had about it and why they're wrong.

1. "I'm Too Young for Any Kind of Insurance!"

Being under-30 feels like an automatic get-out clause for serious thinking. But if you've never gotten insured for anything before, you don't have to start out with a huge life insurance policy.

Why not start with something simple, like term insurance? Think of it as a more specific form of life insurance that covers you for a limited period of time. Because they cover a shorter "term", they're often very affordable.

2. "I Can't Afford It!"

Actually, the younger you sign up for insurance, the more affordable it is. You're likely to have fewer existing health problems that spike your premium (the amount of money you pay each month for the policy). As such, you'll find that a premium costs less than you spend on coffee each month.

3. "I Never Get Sick."

Let's just rephrase that to, "I haven't been seriously ill yet." Illness is a fact of life, and it's far better to, as the boy scouts say, be prepared for any glitches in your currently flawless physique. It can feel like getting health insurance is like daring the universe to rain illness upon you — but trust me, it's the smart move.

As writer and humourist Stephen Butler Leacock wrote, "I detest life-insurance agents: they always argue that I shall someday die, which is not so." Leacock sums it up perfectly: unlike your embarrassing Facebook profile, none of us, alas, will live forever. But with insurance, you can at least take the financial sting out of getting ill.

4. "I Don't Have Any Dependents, So I Don't Need It."

Actually, you probably do. Or you will have, someday soon. Suze Orman, a TV host and financial advisor, puts it like this. "If a child, a spouse, a life partner, or a parent depends on you and your income, you need life insurance."

5. "I Don't Know Where to Begin!"

A great way to start is, I'll admit. a little cheesy, but it works.

Think about the things you're grateful for in life, the things you want to protect — like the pricey DSLR camera your parents gave you for your birthday. That motorbike you wouldn't be able to replace if it broke down. Your beloved cat, who, much as you love him, has an annoying tendency to get into scraps with local dogs — and needs regular stitching up.

With these important things in mind, there are people you can turn to for answers to your queries: like your parents, who are likely to have more experience with insurance than you. Or professional insurance agents, who you can reach online or by phone.

My point is: insurance doesn't have to be scary. And like me, you'll find that once you take the first step and get answers to your questions, the rest is easy.


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