Best life insurance companies for young adults of December 2022

Life insurance is cheapest when you’re young and healthy, so buying a policy in your 20s or 30s can save you money while still securing important financial protection.

Rebecca Shoenthal author photoKatherine Murbach Policygenius

By

Rebecca Shoenthal

Rebecca Shoenthal

Editor & Licensed Life Insurance Expert

Rebecca Shoenthal is a licensed life, disability, and health insurance expert and a former editor at Policygenius. Her insights about life insurance and finance have appeared in The Wall Street Journal, Fox Business, The Balance, HerMoney, SBLI, and John Hancock.

&Katherine Murbach

Katherine Murbach

Associate Editor & Licensed Life Insurance Expert

Katherine Murbach is an associate editor and a licensed life insurance expert at Policygenius. Previously, she wrote about life and disability insurance for 1752 Financial, and advised over 1,500 clients on their life insurance policies as a sales associate.

Edited byAntonio Ruiz-Camacho

Antonio Ruiz-Camacho

Associate Content Director

Antonio helps lead our life insurance and disability insurance editorial team at Policygenius. Previously, he was a senior director of content at Bankrate and CreditCards.com, as well as a principal writer covering personal finance at CNET.

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By

Eloise Spinello

Eloise Spinello

Associate Director, Carrier Relationship Management

Eloise Spinello is a life insurance expert and the Associate Director of the Carrier Relationship Management team at Policygenius.

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Life insurance can be a key element of any personal finance portfolio regardless of your age. If you’re young and healthy, a life insurance policy can help your loved ones, including your parents, manage unexpected expenses should something unforeseeable happen to you. If you’re planning to have a family down the road, buying life insurance now is an affordable way to protect them financially in the future.

Purchasing life insurance in your 20s and 30s can save you money in the long run. Life insurance gets more expensive as you age, so buying a policy when you’re young and healthy helps you lock in a good rate. How do you determine whether the cost of life insurance is worth it and which company is the right fit for you? There are a few simple guidelines that can help you decide whether it makes sense for you to buy life insurance right now. Read on to learn all about our top life insurance company recommendations for young adults.

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The best life insurance companies for young adults

Methodology: How we chose the best life insurance companies for young adults

We don't get paid for our company reviews and use an extensive rubric of criteria covering policy details, price, financial confidence, third-party ratings, and customer experience to assign unbiased ratings out of five stars. Any recommendations we make are based on internal and external expert opinions and data from our Policygenius Price Index, which uses real-time rate data from leading life insurance companies to determine pricing trends.

Our ratings and reviews can help point you to an insurer you can rely on for your family’s financial protection, but the best life insurance company for you is dependent on multiple factors. A licensed agent at Policygenius can work with you through the application process so you’re getting coverage from the best insurer for your circumstances at the most competitive price.

→ Read more about our reviews methodology here

Best overall life insurance for young adults

Brighthouse Financial

Policygenius rating 

Our proprietary rating methodology takes multiple factors into account, including customer satisfaction, cost, financial strength, and policy offerings. See the "methodology" section for more details.

Full orange starFull orange starFull orange starFull orange starFull orange star

5.0

AM Best rating 

A.M. Best is a global credit rating agency that scores the financial strength of insurance companies on a scale from A++ (Superior) to D (Poor).

A

Cost 

Using a mix of internal and external rate data, we grade the cost of each insurance company's premiums on a scale from least expensive ($) to most expensive ($$$$$).

$

$

$

$

$

No-med-exam option

Why we chose it

Brighthouse Financial offers competitive rates, comprehensive coverage, and application decisions in as little as 24 hours, making it our overall best choice for people who want to get life insurance coverage without having to take the medical exam.

Read our full Brighthouse Financial review
Pros and cons

Pros

  • Extremely affordable

  • Instant-decision applications

  • Best-in-class no-med option

Cons

  • Traditional term life not available in CA, IL, LA, ME, or NY

  • Term life applicants limited to ages 25-50

Brighthouse Financial features one of the best overall life insurance products for young adults ages 25 and up — they offer quick approvals, no-medical-exam options and affordable premiums.

Best term life insurance for young adults

Protective

Policygenius rating 

Our proprietary rating methodology takes multiple factors into account, including customer satisfaction, cost, financial strength, and policy offerings. See the "methodology" section for more details.

Full orange starFull orange starFull orange starFull orange starHalf orange star

4.9

AM Best rating 

A.M. Best is a global credit rating agency that scores the financial strength of insurance companies on a scale from A++ (Superior) to D (Poor).

A

Cost 

Using a mix of internal and external rate data, we grade the cost of each insurance company's premiums on a scale from least expensive ($) to most expensive ($$$$$).

$

$

$

$

$

30+ year terms

Why we chose it

Protective has some of the most affordable and comprehensive life insurance options available.

Read our full Protective review
Pros and cons

Pros

  • One of the best values on the market

  • Variety of coverage amounts and term lengths

  • Solid suite of online tools

Cons

  • Slow application approval

  • Zero no-medical-exam options

With term lengths up to 40 years and coverage amounts up to $50 million, you can be assured that a term life insurance policy from Protective will do what it’s meant to: protect your beneficiaries.

Best whole life insurance for young adults

MassMutual

Policygenius rating 

Our proprietary rating methodology takes multiple factors into account, including customer satisfaction, cost, financial strength, and policy offerings. See the "methodology" section for more details.

Full orange starFull orange starFull orange starHalf orange starEmpty gray star

3.8

AM Best rating 

A.M. Best is a global credit rating agency that scores the financial strength of insurance companies on a scale from A++ (Superior) to D (Poor).

A++

Cost 

Using a mix of internal and external rate data, we grade the cost of each insurance company's premiums on a scale from least expensive ($) to most expensive ($$$$$).

NR

All 50 states

Why we chose it

MassMutual’s whole life insurance plan provides a lifetime coverage option that builds cash value with the potential to earn dividends.

Read our full MassMutual review
Pros and cons

Pros

  • Strong financial stability ratings

  • Potential for dividends

  • Offers a variety of permanent life insurance products

Cons

  • No option to skip the medical exam

  • High premiums

MassMutual’s whole life insurance policies offer some of the best dividends in the market and cash value growth compared to other whole life insurance providers. While cash value life insurance isn’t a good primary savings vehicle for retirement, it can offer alternative savings alongside traditional retirement accounts like a 401(k) or IRA, especially for high-net-worth individuals.

Best no-medical-exam life insurance for young adults

Lincoln Financial

Policygenius rating 

Our proprietary rating methodology takes multiple factors into account, including customer satisfaction, cost, financial strength, and policy offerings. See the "methodology" section for more details.

Full orange starFull orange starFull orange starFull orange starHalf orange star

4.7

AM Best rating 

A.M. Best is a global credit rating agency that scores the financial strength of insurance companies on a scale from A++ (Superior) to D (Poor).

A+

Cost 

Using a mix of internal and external rate data, we grade the cost of each insurance company's premiums on a scale from least expensive ($) to most expensive ($$$$$).

$

$

$

$

$

No-med-exam option

Why we chose it

Lincoln Financial offers a diverse array of life insurance policies, including competitive no-med and high-net-worth options.

Read our full Lincoln Financial review
Pros and cons

Pros

  • Affordable for older applicants

  • No-med option available

  • Very fast turnaround

Cons

  • Expensive permanent policies

  • Few online tools

Much like Brighthouse, Lincoln Financial offers affordable prices and robust coverage, and that competitive coverage is available to just about everyone. This includes young adults in good health who may want to skip the medical exam during the application process.

Best life insurance for young families

Banner Life

Policygenius rating 

Our proprietary rating methodology takes multiple factors into account, including customer satisfaction, cost, financial strength, and policy offerings. See the "methodology" section for more details.

Full orange starFull orange starFull orange starFull orange starHalf orange star

4.7

AM Best rating 

A.M. Best is a global credit rating agency that scores the financial strength of insurance companies on a scale from A++ (Superior) to D (Poor).

A+

Cost 

Using a mix of internal and external rate data, we grade the cost of each insurance company's premiums on a scale from least expensive ($) to most expensive ($$$$$).

$

$

$

$

$

No-med-exam option

30+ year terms

All 50 states

Why we chose it

Banner Life has some of the longest term lengths — up to 40 years — and most competitive life insurance rates available, even for people with a history of medical conditions.

Read our full Banner Life review
Pros and cons

Pros

  • Very competitive rates

  • Covers many health conditions

  • Term lengths up to 40 years

Cons

  • Strict temporary coverage eligibility

  • Reconsideration is paid for by the applicant

Banner Life stands out for offering some of the longest terms and the most competitive rates in the market. From newlyweds to parents-to-be, young families can purchase 35- or 40-year term policies at an affordable cost, which can help them protect multiple children until they’re all financially independent.

Best life insurance for young individuals

AIG

Policygenius rating 

Our proprietary rating methodology takes multiple factors into account, including customer satisfaction, cost, financial strength, and policy offerings. See the "methodology" section for more details.

Full orange starFull orange starFull orange starFull orange starHalf orange star

4.6

AM Best rating 

A.M. Best is a global credit rating agency that scores the financial strength of insurance companies on a scale from A++ (Superior) to D (Poor).

A

Cost 

Using a mix of internal and external rate data, we grade the cost of each insurance company's premiums on a scale from least expensive ($) to most expensive ($$$$$).

$

$

$

$

$

30+ year terms

All 50 states

Why we chose it

With competitive pricing and a range of flexible term periods for its Select-a-Term product, AIG is a solid option for many life insurance shoppers, including families.

Read our full AIG review
Pros and cons

Pros

  • Competitive pricing for all ages

  • Customizable term policies

  • Benefits common health conditions

Cons

  • Below average customer ratings

  • Cumbersome quote tool

AIG offers affordable term life insurance with customizable term lengths and riders. Combined with competitive options for people with more common health conditions, AIG is a great first look for all life insurance shoppers.

Best life insurance for students

Transamerica

Policygenius rating 

Our proprietary rating methodology takes multiple factors into account, including customer satisfaction, cost, financial strength, and policy offerings. See the "methodology" section for more details.

Full orange starFull orange starFull orange starFull orange starHalf orange star

4.4

AM Best rating 

A.M. Best is a global credit rating agency that scores the financial strength of insurance companies on a scale from A++ (Superior) to D (Poor).

A

Cost 

Using a mix of internal and external rate data, we grade the cost of each insurance company's premiums on a scale from least expensive ($) to most expensive ($$$$$).

$

$

$

$

$

No-med-exam option

Why we chose it

Transamerica is one of the oldest and largest life insurance companies, with over 12 million active accounts today. It offers affordable rates for almost every age, and you can even skip the medical exam if you fall under a certain age or coverage amount.

Read our full Transamerica review
Pros and cons

Pros

  • Competitive rates for term life insurance

  • No-medical-exam available for people under a certain age or coverage amount

  • Former smokers may be eligible for lower rates

Cons

  • Uneven customer experience

  • Most policy changes require a paper form

Transamerica is one of the best life insurance companies for students, specifically undergraduates. Students need to provide their projected post-graduation income based on their expected degree or past work/internship experience to justify coverage amounts. We chose Transamerica over other life insurance companies that offer student coverage because it allows students the highest coverage amounts (up to $500,000). It’s a great choice for those with large student loans or those who expect to earn higher salaries upon graduation. Transamerica also has no-medical-exam life insurance options available so students can get coverage quickly.

Best for people in their early 20s

Transamerica

Why we chose it

Transamerica offers competitive rates, high coverage amounts and attractive no-med options for people in their 20s, including students, young people with only a few years in the workforce, and people who use CBD or marijuana occasionally.

Best for people in their mid 20s

Brighthouse Financial

Why we chose it

Brighthouse Financial offers one of the best overall life insurance policies for young adults ages 25 and up. It offers no-medical-exam and instant-decision options for people in excellent health and some of the most affordable rates on the market. People with low-level health concerns only need to answer medical questions and go over medical and insurance histories.

Best for people in their early 30s

Why we chose it

Banner Life is a good option for young adults who just started a family, bought their first house, or need long coverage periods for any other reason. It offers term lengths up to 40 years and some of the most competitive prices on the market, especially for people with certain common health histories. If you're concerned about pricing, you should consider Banner for its lower rates.

Cheapest life insurance for millennials

Brighthouse Financial

Why we chose it

Brighthouse Financial offers the cheapest life insurance for millennials. It is especially enticing because it offers no-medical-exam and instant-decision options for millennials in excellent health.

What is the best life insurance for young adults?

If you’re single, in your 20s or 30s, and don’t have children, life insurance probably isn’t the first thing on your mind. While life insurance is an important part of a comprehensive financial plan for people with dependents, purchasing a policy means adding monthly or annual premiums to your budget. For many young adults who are just starting their careers or saving for future goals, those premiums can often seem like an unnecessary expense. That’s why the best life insurance policy for young adults is one that you can afford, and that offers enough protection for the right period of time in case of an accident or a sudden illness.

The best life insurance policy types for millennials

The best life insurance policy type for healthy millennials is an accelerated underwriting (AU) policy. An accelerated underwriting (AU) term life insurance policy is a term life policy that does not require a medical exam. For some millennials with straightforward medical histories, this can be a good option for getting term life insurance on a shorter timeline. 

Underwriting is the process insurance companies use to evaluate your health and set your rates. Accelerated underwriting allows you to apply for a policy without undergoing a medical exam. You can be approved in one to three days, a lot quicker than the five to six weeks it takes with traditional underwriting. For this reason, some people call AU policies “instant decision life insurance.” 

We recommend AU policies from two of our partners: Brighthouse SimplySelect and Lincoln TermAccel. Both providers offer AU term life insurance policies with up to 30 years of coverage. Brighthouse provides up to $2 million in coverage and Lincoln offers up to $1 million.

Is life insurance worth it at a young age?

Life insurance provides a financial cushion for your loved ones in the event of your death. If any of the following circumstances apply to you, you should consider buying life insurance as soon as possible:

  1. Someone relies on you for financial support. If a partner or spouse, a child, a parent, a sibling, or even a business partner currently relies on your income, you’ll want to make sure they’ll be able to stay afloat financially if you unexpectedly pass away. The death benefit from life insurance is tax-free and can be used for anything—including funeral expenses, rent, or paying off debt. You can update your beneficiaries at any time.

  2. You have private student loans or other debt. While federal student loans are typically forgiven if the borrower dies, most private student loans aren’t. That means that a parent or anyone else who may have co-signed your student loans could be left on the hook for your debt when you die.

  3. You’re planning on having kids. Many people wait until their children are born to purchase life insurance. But if you know you want kids down the line, you can lock in a cheaper premium rate by buying a life insurance policy now. This frees up more money for other expenses down the road, such as child care and college.

How much does life insurance for young adults cost?

Life insurance coverage is more affordable than you might think and the younger you are, the cheaper it is to get covered. Costs increase significantly with age because premiums are set by insurers based on your risk of dying while the policy is active.

Is life insurance worth buying at a young age?

In a study by LIMRA, a research, consulting, and professional development organization for financial services, and Life Happens, a nonprofit focused on providing unbiased education around insurance options, 44% of millennials estimated that a 20-year term policy would cost $1,000 or more per year (the actual cost of the policy was approximately $165/year). [1]

Being young and healthy is a good opportunity to lock in a cheap fixed rate for decades. Each year that you delay buying a life insurance policy, the cost of premiums increases by 4.5% to 9% on average. That means that a healthy woman who takes out a life insurance policy at age 25 would pay approximately $21 monthly for the same policy that would cost a 55-year-old $110 monthly.

Below is a cost comparison over time for a healthy person buying a 20-year life insurance policy.

Age

Sex

$250,000 policy

$500,000 policy

$1,000,000 policy

25

Female

$14.17

$21.06

$33.45

Male

$17.11

$26.89

$44.62

35

Female

$16.39

$25.43

$42.49

Male

$18.58

$30.14

$51.51

45

Female

$28.31

$47.71

$86.45

Male

$35.11

$60.58

$112.52

55

Female

$59.80

$108.44

$207.17

Male

$82.80

$150.39

$282.99

Methodology: Average monthly estimated rates for male and female non-smokers in a Preferred health classification with a 20-year term length. Rates are based on the monthly Policygenius Life Insurance Price Index. Prices in the index are determined by internal actuarial rate tables for life insurance carriers that offer policies through the Policygenius marketplace: AIG, Banner Life, Brighthouse, Lincoln Financial, Foresters Financial, Mutual of Omaha, Pacific Life, Protective, Prudential, SBLI, Symetra, and Transamerica. Illustration valid as of 12/01/2022.

Over the life of this policy, a 25-year-old woman would pay approximately $3,480 more if she waited until she was 45 to buy the same policy, and nearly $11,212 more if she waited until she was 55.

However, while it’s cheaper to buy life insurance when you’re younger, your age isn’t the only factor that determines the cost of your policy. The following also affects your premiums:

→ Learn more about what determines the cost of life insurance

Best life insurance companies for millennials 

An affordable premium is an important part of any life insurance plan, but there are other factors to consider when choosing the best insurer to protect your family’s financial security.

  • Are they a good match for your health? Some providers consider certain medical conditions lower risk than others. Work with an independent insurance agent to compare rates.

  • Do they offer the riders you need? Not every provider offers the same riders to customize your coverage. Confirm with an agent if riders are important to you. 

  • How much can you do electronically? You may only be able to make certain changes to your policy by mail, depending on your insurer. If you prefer to do things digitally, go with a life insurance company that can accommodate you.

  • How quickly do you need coverage? It can take five to six weeks or more to buy a traditional life insurance policy. If you need coverage sooner, some providers may be faster than others or offer no-medical exam options or temporary coverage.

The best life insurance company and policy for any millennial depends largely on your health history and lifestyle. But buying a policy while you’re young will secure protection for your loved ones early and save you money long-term. To find the best policy for your needs, shop around with an independent insurance broker.

Which young adults don’t need life insurance?

Though being young is a good time to lock in a cheap rate on a policy, life insurance doesn’t make sense for every person under 30. You probably don’t need life insurance if you are:

  • A single person without any dependents or debt who isn’t planning on having kids in the future.

  • A low-income earner whose budget simply can’t cover the cost of premiums.

  • Self-insured, or someone who already has enough assets to provide for your family and other dependents in the event of your death.

  • Under the age of 18life insurance for children is purchased by parents, usually in the form of a rider on an existing policy.

Life insurance for young adults FAQs

What type of life insurance should young adults get?

Unless you are a high-net-worth individual looking to expand their pre-tax investment options or somebody who requires lifelong coverage, term life insurance is the most affordable and convenient option for most people, including young adults. Term life insurance is 5 to 15 times more affordable than permanent life insurance, but it will eventually expire. If you’re shopping for life insurance at a young age, make sure to choose a term long enough to provide the protection that fits your needs.

Which insurance is best for youngsters?

Young people will usually need a life insurance policy that lasts long enough to protect their loved ones until they’re financially independent. When shopping for life insurance at a young age, consider an insurer with stellar reputation, a strong financial record, and affordable options that will allow you to pay the premiums for the entirety of the policy.

Is term life insurance good for young adults?

Term life insurance can last up to 40 years and is 5 to 15 times more affordable than permanent life insurance, so it’s overall a good option for most people, including young adults. And the sooner you buy coverage, the more money you’ll save down the road – life insurance gets up to 4.5% to 9% more expensive on average every year you get older and put off buying a policy.

Is life insurance worth it at a young age?

The sooner you buy life insurance, the greater your chances will be to lock in a low premium – young people tend to have fewer health conditions that might increase the cost of the policy premium. A non-smoker 25-year-old could pay, for example, around $24 a month for a $500,000 policy. Meanwhile, a non-smoker 45-year-old could pay around $54 per month for the same coverage – more than twice as much.

References

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Policygenius uses external sources, including government data, industry studies, and reputable news organizations to supplement proprietary marketplace data and internal expertise. Learn more about how we use and vet external sources as part of our

editorial standards.
  1. LIMRA

    . "

    2021 Insurance Barometer Study Reveals Common Misconceptions That Prevent Americans from Getting Life Insurance They Know They Need

    ." Accessed October 24, 2022.

Authors

Editor & Licensed Life Insurance Expert

Rebecca Shoenthal

Editor & Licensed Life Insurance Expert

gray twitter icon linkgray linkedin icon link

Rebecca Shoenthal is a licensed life, disability, and health insurance expert and a former editor at Policygenius. Her insights about life insurance and finance have appeared in The Wall Street Journal, Fox Business, The Balance, HerMoney, SBLI, and John Hancock.

Associate Editor & Licensed Life Insurance Expert

Katherine Murbach

Associate Editor & Licensed Life Insurance Expert

gray twitter icon linkgray linkedin icon link

Katherine Murbach is an associate editor and a licensed life insurance expert at Policygenius. Previously, she wrote about life and disability insurance for 1752 Financial, and advised over 1,500 clients on their life insurance policies as a sales associate.

Editor

Associate Content Director

Antonio Ruiz-Camacho

Associate Content Director

gray twitter icon linkgray linkedin icon link

Antonio helps lead our life insurance and disability insurance editorial team at Policygenius. Previously, he was a senior director of content at Bankrate and CreditCards.com, as well as a principal writer covering personal finance at CNET.

Expert reviewer

Associate Director, Carrier Relationship Management

Eloise Spinello

Associate Director, Carrier Relationship Management

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Eloise Spinello is a life insurance expert and the Associate Director of the Carrier Relationship Management team at Policygenius.

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