Best Life Insurance For A 61 Year Old

Life insurance is designed to offer peace of mind, and you can probably appreciate that more than ever in your 60s. 

Maybe you’re thinking about leaving behind a legacy for your family or making sure your final expenses are covered. Whatever your goals, the good news is that you still have most options available at 61. 

Do You Need Life Insurance At 61?

Understanding your options for a burial policy for elderly is critical, even when you’re just 61

The primary purpose of life insurance is to prevent your death from causing financial hardship. 

Death leads to numerous expected expenses, including the loss of your income, outstanding medical bills, and final expenses. 

Death can also create expenses There are also many unexpected costs that death can create for your loved ones as their lives reshape in your absence. For example, if you’re providing childcare for your grandkids when you pass away, your loved ones would have to make (likely hire) alternate arrangements. This could apply to a range of activities you provide to your family for “free,” such as help with yard work, cleaning, and finances.

With these expenses in mind, there are two ways life insurance can prepare your family for them: 

  • Income replacement: Most 61-year-olds still bring in an income, but you may also receive benefits through a pension or other program. Will the loss of this income cause hardship for your dependents (i.e., your spouse)?
  • Final expenses: According to the National Funeral Directors Association (NFDA), the average funeral costs $10,300, so even “expected” expenses can quickly get out of hand. How will your family cover these expenses?

Types of Life Insurance For 61-Year-Olds

planning ahead can provide peace of mind and financial security for your loved ones.

At 61 years old, many people already have a nest egg and only need to plan for leaving behind one dependent (their spouse). But what if you don’t fit into that scenario? 

Finding the best life insurance means taking full inventory of your health, assets, and estate planning goals. 

Beyond comparing premiums, learning the basics of term life vs. whole life will help you make the right choice for your family’s needs, now and in the years to come. 

Whole Life

Whole life insurance is permanent, meaning coverage will last the remainder of your lifetime. Premiums are fixed, allowing those on a fixed income to budget predictably and buy it confidently. 

Death benefits range from $1,000 (enough to cover a direct cremation) to $1,000,000+ (enough to replace a decade or two of your income). 

“Traditional” whole life insurance starts at $50,000 to $100,000, depending on the carrier, and can build cash value over the decades. At 61, you’ll likely pick a specific type of whole life insurance over a traditional policy. 

Most 61-year-old life insurance buyers are looking to fund their final expenses.  As a result, they gravitate towards products with smaller payouts, like: 

  • Final expense whole life: These policies are easier to qualify for and more affordable because they have a smaller death benefit tailored to cover end-of-life costs. There’s no medical exam, just yes/no questions about your health and an automated Rx check. Death benefits range from $1,000 to $50,000. 
  • Guaranteed issue whole life (GIWL): This type of coverage is available with no medical exam, which is ideal for those with health concerns. However, premiums are higher as a result.  There is no medical exam, health questions, or Rx check. Death benefits can be as large as $25,000. 

Term Life

Term life insurance offers temporary coverage that lasts between 5 and 40 years. It’s a good way to get life insurance on a more flexible basis, tailored to your financial goals. For instance, you might buy a 15-year policy to coincide with the payoff date on your mortgage. 

If you pass away while your term is active, the death benefit gets paid to your beneficiaries, just like whole life. 

But, if you outlive your policy, it simply terminates. That could leave you searching for a new policy in your 70s or 80s, with fewer, more expensive options. 

If you’ve assessed your financial obligations and you feel temporary insurance is a good fit, the best types of term life for 61-year-olds include: 

  • Convertible term life: These policies give you the option to convert to a whole life policy without an additional medical exam 
  • Accidental death insurance: This type of coverage pays out only if your death is the result of an accident, like a car crash or fall.  Similar to GIWL, these policies offer guaranteed approval to anyone eligible by age and state of residence

How much is life insurance for a 61-year-old?

The rates below represent estimated monthly premiums for men and women who do not smoke. The insurance company will determine your actual rate based on answers to basic health questions. 

Whole Life Premiums for 61-Year-Olds

For 61-year-olds looking into life insurance, this rate table shows how premiums differ based on gender and the size of your policy’s death benefit. 

Whole Life Insurance: Monthly Rates

Death Benefit Male Rate Female Rate
$5,000 22.64 18.86
$10,000 40.17 34.32
$15,000 57.71 49.68
$20,000 75.24 65.03
$25,000 92.78 80.39
$50,000 180.46 157.17

For example, a 61-year-old man would pay $22.64 for a $5,000 death benefit versus $18.86 for a woman of the same age. If they want more robust coverage, say $50,000, premiums jump significantly to $180.46 for a man or $157.17 for a woman. 

If you look closer at how premiums scale for every additional $5,000 in death benefit, it works out to about $17.50 for men and $15 for women.

Term Life Insurance Rates At Age 61

Term life insurance rates are lower than whole life insurance, even for a comparable death benefit. This is because the insurance company takes on less risk since a term policy may well expire before it’s claimed. 

Term Life Insurance: Monthly Rates

Death Benefit Male Rate Female Rate
$25,000 71 71
$50,000 105.64 78.83
$100,000 135 135
$250,000 224.55 174.83
$500,000 428.71 319.52
$1,000,000 767.15 598.28

You can opt for very sizable coverage with a term life policy and still have reasonable premiums. 

For instance, a $250,000 term life policy costs $224 monthly for a man and $174 for a woman. With premiums slightly more than double that of a $50,000 policy, you can secure five times the coverage. 

How Much is an Accidental Death Policy at 61 Years of Age?

The low premiums associated with accidental death insurance make it highly accessible. While it only pays out in certain circumstances, its nature offers great peace of mind in case of the unexpected.

Accidental Death Insurance: Monthly Rates

Death Benefit Male Rate Female Rate
$50,000 13.22 10.68
$100,000 22.06 16.98
$200,000 39.73 29.58
$300,000 57.41 42.18
$400,000 75.08 54.78
$500,000 92.76 67.38

Even for a very sizable policy with a $300,000 death benefit, the expected premium is just $39.73 for a 61-year-old man or $29.58 for a woman of the same age. 

Best Companies for 61-Year-Olds

Aetna for Whole Life Insurance

The Final Expense Individual Whole Life policy from Aetna has level premiums and requires no medical exam. 

At 61, you can choose a death benefit as large as $40,000 — a comfortable amount to cover final expenses, like funeral costs and outstanding bills. As a whole life policy, your plan will also build cash value over time that you can borrow against or put toward premiums. 

  • Face amounts from $2,000 to $40,000
  • No medical exam required
  • Premiums never increase
  • Builds cash value that you can borrow against
  • Non-forfeiture options allow you to get a partial refund of the premiums you’ve paid if your coverage lapses due to non-payment. 
  • Accidental Death Benefit Rider means Aetna will still pay 100% of the death benefit to your beneficiaries if your death is accidental

Transamerica for Term Life Insurance

Trendsetter Super Term Life coverage from Transamerica offers level premiums and unique flexibility. 

Coverage is available in increments of 10, 15, 20, 25, and 30 years. When your term expires, you can choose to keep renewing your policy up until the age of 105. Or, you can choose to convert to a whole life policy during a limited period. 

  • Face amounts from $25,000 to $1,000,000+
  • No medical exam required
  • Guaranteed renewable until age 105
  • Premiums will not increase during your original term 
  • Terminal Illness Accelerated Death Benefit Rider is included and allows you to access a portion of your death benefit early if you are diagnosed with a terminal illness that requires ongoing care. 
  • The conversion privilege means you can trade in for a whole life policy before your 70th birthday (or 75th birthday if you choose the Preferred Plus class).

Mutual of Omaha for Accidental Death Insurance

Guaranteed ADvantage Accidental Death Insurance (AD&D) from Mutual of Omaha offers peace of mind if you’re healthy and looking to prepare for the unexpected. 

This policy offers guaranteed coverage, meaning no one will be denied for any reason, even working in a hazardous environment. There are few exclusions, and most accidents are covered, including passenger incidents on commercial and private aircraft. 

  • Face amounts from $50,000 to $500,000
  • No medical exam or health questions 
  • Premiums never increase
  • Your spouse under 70 is also covered up until the age of 80
  • Newborn and adopted children can be added to the policy after issue, and they’ll be covered for 20% of face value 
  • Auto Pedestrian Benefit Rider means Mutual of Omaha will pay an additional 25% of the death benefit to your beneficiaries if your death is caused by an auto strike