What Is An Insurance Premium? All You Need To Know About It

Applying for insurance but still a little unsure about what insurance premium is? Continue reading for all the components that factor in the insurance premium

An insurance premium is the amount of money paid for a policy by an individual or a corporation. Premiums are paid for health, auto, house, and life insurance plans. The premium is income for the insurance firm once it has been earned. It also carries a risk, as the insurer is obligated to cover any claims made against the insurance. The termination of the policy may occur if the individual or business fails to pay the premium.

Let’s dig a little deeper and discover more about Insurance Premium if you’re still unfamiliar with it.

What is insurance?

Insurance is a contract in which an individual or entity receives financial protection or compensation from an insurance firm in the form of a policy. The firm pooled the risks of its clients to make payments more reasonable to the insured.

Insurance policies are used to protect against the possibility of large and small financial losses resulting from damage to the insured’s property or liability for damage or injury to a third party.

How does it work?

There are many different types of insurance policies to choose from, and almost anyone or any business can find an insurance company eager to insure them—for a fee. Auto, health, homeowners, and life insurance are the most frequent types of personal insurance plans. Car insurance is required by law in the United States, and most people have at least one of these types of insurance.

Businesses require specialized sorts of insurance plans that protect them against specific dangers. A fast-food restaurant, for example, requires coverage for damage or injury resulting from deep-frying operations. Although an auto dealer is not exposed to this risk, he or she must have coverage for any damage or injury that may occur during test drives.

Kidnap and ransom (K&R), medical malpractice, and professional liability insurance, often known as errors and omissions insurance, are examples of insurance plans available for extremely specialized reasons.

Insurance policy components

It is critical to understand how insurance works before selecting coverage.

A thorough grasp of these ideas will go a long way toward assisting you in selecting the coverage that best meets your needs. Whole life insurance, for example, may or may not be the best sort of life insurance for you. Any sort of insurance must have three essential components (premium, policy limit, and deductible).


The premium is the cost of insurance, which is usually expressed as a monthly cost. The premium is calculated by the insurer based on the risk profile of you or your business, which may include creditworthiness.

For example, if you buy numerous high-end cars and have a history of reckless driving, you will almost certainly pay more for vehicle insurance than someone who owns a single mid-range sedan and has a spotless driving record. For similar policies, however, various insurers may charge varying prices. As a result, doing some research to get the best pricing for you is necessary.

Policy limit

The policy limit is the most an insurer will pay for a covered loss under a policy. Maximums can be set for a certain time period (e.g., annual or policy term), for a specific loss or injury, or for the whole policy term (also known as the lifetime maximum).

Higher limitations are usually associated with higher premiums. The face value of a general life insurance policy is the sum paid to a beneficiary upon the insured’s death, and it is the highest amount the insurer will pay.


The deductible is a predetermined sum that the policyholder must pay out of pocket before the insurer will cover a claim. Deductibles act as a barrier to filing a high number of minor claims.

Depending on the insurer and the kind of insurance, deductibles can be applied per-policy or per-claim. Policies with extremely large deductibles are usually less expensive because the high out-of-pocket expense leads to fewer minor claims.

For the sake of this article, we’ll concentrate on one aspect of the insurance policy: premium.

What is an insurance premium?

When you buy an insurance policy, you pay a fee to the company in exchange for coverage. The insurance premium is the name for this payment. Depending on the insurance coverage, you may be required to pay the payment monthly or semiannually. You may be asked to pay the entire sum upfront before coverage begins in some situations.

Most insurance companies allow you to pay your bill in a variety of ways, including online, automated payments, credit and debit cards, checks, money orders, cashier’s checks, and bank drafts. If you sign up for paperless billing or pay the full amount in one go rather than making minimum installments, you may be eligible for a discount.

How an insurance premium works?

Your insurer will charge you a premium when you sign up for an insurance policy. This is the cost of the insurance policy. When it comes to paying their insurance payments, policyholders have various options. Some insurers enable policyholders to pay their insurance premiums in monthly or semi-annual installments, while others may require full payment before coverage begins.

The price of the premium depends on a variety of factors, including:

  • The type of coverage
  • Your age
  • The area in which you live
  • Any claims filed in the past
  • Moral hazard and adverse selection

Auto insurance premiums

The quantity of coverage you purchase, as well as your age, driving record, claims history, and car, are all factors that go into determining your auto insurance prices.

In general, full coverage insurance, which includes liability, comprehensive, and collision coverage, has the highest premiums. According to NerdWallet’s auto insurance rates investigation, a full coverage car insurance policy costs $1,630 per year on average for good drivers with good credit. A motorist with the same background, on the other hand, would pay $561 on average for minimal vehicle insurance.

In an auto insurance policy, the chances of a claim being filed against a young driver residing in an urban location may be higher than for a juvenile driver living in the suburbs.

In general, the higher the risk, the higher the cost of the insurance policy (and thus, the insurance premiums).

Life insurance premiums

When calculating life insurance premiums, insurers often consider your age and medical history. Other factors that influence the pricing include your credit history, the amount of coverage you purchase, and your work status. According to data provided by Quotacy, the average cost of life insurance for a 40-year-old is $27 per month for a 20-year, $500,000 term life policy.

Permanent policies, such as whole life insurance, are the most expensive of the several types of life insurance since they protect you for the rest of your life. Term life insurance, on the other hand, is for a specific period of time, such as 10 or 20 years.

Renters insurance premiums

According to NerdWallet’s renter’s rates investigation, renters’ insurance premiums average $14 per month. In most jurisdictions, the cost of your premiums is determined by particular factors such as the value of your possessions, if the building has a burglar alarm, and your credit score. Before purchasing coverage, compare renters’ insurance quotes.

Homeowners insurance premiums

According to a NerdWallet rates analysis, the average homeowner’s insurance cost is $1,765 per year. Premiums for homeowners’ insurance are determined by a number of criteria, including the location and value of the building, your credit score in most states, your claims history, and the amount of coverage you want to purchase.

Health insurance premium

A health insurance premium is a one-time payment made on an individual’s or family’s behalf in order to keep their health insurance policy active. When purchasing insurance on the individual market, premiums are usually paid monthly, though those who obtain insurance through their job usually pay their portion of the cost through payroll deductions. When it comes to medical care, consumers may have to pay out-of-pocket charges such as deductibles, copays, and coinsurance in addition to the premium.

Premiums for health insurance are the charges you pay to keep your coverage active, usually on a monthly basis. If you fail to pay your premiums, your health insurance coverage will be terminated.

Premiums aren’t the only cost of receiving medical treatment. Even after paying your monthly charge, depending on the amount and type of care you receive, you may be required to pay out-of-pocket expenses. These are some of them:

  • Deductibles: The portion of your medical bill that you must pay before your insurance begins to pay claims.
  • Copays: Copays are a set sum you must pay at the time of service for things like medical visits and prescription medicines. The remaining sum is paid in full or in part by the insurance company.
  • Coinsurance: it is a percentage of your medical expense that you must pay even after your deductible has been met. The remainder of the amount is paid by the insurance company.

The amount of these out-of-pocket spending restrictions vary depending on the insurance plan. Different insurers may offer different plan tiers. In most cases, the higher your premium, the lower your out-of-pocket payments. A yearly out-of-pocket cap is also included in the plans. You won’t have to pay coinsurance or copays for eligible medical expenses after that level is reached.

How are premiums calculated?

After the policy time has ended, insurance premiums may increase. If the risk associated with offering a particular type of insurance increases, or if the cost of providing coverage increases, the insurer may raise the premium for claims made in the previous period.

Actuaries are typically hired by insurance firms to estimate risk levels and premium pricing for a certain policy.

Artificial intelligence and advanced algorithms are fundamentally altering how insurance is priced and marketed. There is a heated discussion going on between those who believe algorithms will eventually replace human actuaries and those who believe that growing the use of algorithms will demand more human actuaries’ participation and propel the profession to a “next level.”

Premiums paid by customers and policyholders are used by insurers to cover obligations related to the policies they underwrite. They may also decide to invest in the premium in order to increase their returns. This can help an insurer maintain its prices competitive by offsetting some of the costs of providing insurance coverage.

Insurance firms are expected to maintain a particular amount of liquidity at all times, even if they invest in assets with varying degrees of liquidity and returns. State insurance regulators determine the number of liquid assets that insurers must have in order to pay claims.

Special considerations

Most people believe that searching around for the greatest insurance rates is the best way to go. You can shop around for individual insurance firms on your own. And, if you’re seeking quotations, it’s quite simple to do so on the internet.

The Affordable Care Act (ACA), for example, allows uninsured people to shop for health insurance policies on the open market. The site asks for basic information like your name, date of birth, address, and income, as well as the personal information of everyone else in your home when you log in. You have various alternatives according to your home state—each with its own premiums, deductibles, and copays—and the insurance coverage changes depending on how much you spend.

Another possibility is to work with an insurance agent or broker. They usually work with a variety of firms and can try to offer you the best deal. Many brokers can help you find plans for life, vehicle, home, and health insurance. It’s vital to keep in mind, too, that some of these brokers are driven by commissions.

What do insurers do with the premiums?

Premiums paid by customers and policyholders are used by insurers to cover obligations related to the policies they underwrite. Some insurers invest in premiums in order to increase their profits. As a result, the companies can assist an insurer to keep its prices competitive in the market by offsetting some of the costs of providing insurance coverage.

How much is an insurance premium?

Insurance premiums do not have a defined price. Even if you have the same automobile as your neighbor, you may pay more (or less) for insurance—even if the coverage is the same. Shopping around and comparing costs and policies pays well.

For “better” coverage, you’ll have to spend extra. A health insurance coverage with a $1,000 deductible, for example, will be more expensive than one with a $5,000 deductible. Similarly, if all other conditions are equal, a car insurance policy with a $0 deductible will be more expensive than one with a $500 deductible.

Still, just because you want to save money doesn’t mean you should instantly choose the lowest coverage. When choosing the plan that will work best for you, it’s critical that you examine your situation—and the probability that you’ll need to use that policy—as well as the possibility that you’ll need to use it.

Factors considered while calculating insurance premiums

Insurance companies consider several factors when calculating insurance premiums:

Your age

Insurance companies consider your age since it predicts your likelihood of needing to use the coverage. Because younger people are less likely to require medical treatment, their health insurance rates are often lower. Premiums rise as people get older and are more likely to require more medical services. Furthermore, because young drivers are still gaining experience, their auto insurance is more expensive. Similarly, senior drivers, who have poorer reflexes, will pay more.

The type of coverage

When purchasing an insurance coverage, you have a variety of possibilities. The more comprehensive the coverage, the higher the cost. For example, a liability-only auto insurance policy will be less expensive than one that includes collision, comprehensive liability, medical expenses, and uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage.

The amount of coverage

The less coverage you have, the lower your premiums will be—regardless of what you’re insuring. If you buy health insurance, for example, a larger deductible and a greater out-of-pocket limit will result in lower premiums for the same type of coverage. Similarly, insuring a $400,000 home will cost more than insuring a $200,000 home.

Personal information

The insurance provider may look at your claims history, driving record, credit history, gender, marital status, lifestyle, family medical history, health, smoking status, hobbies, employment, and where you reside, depending on the sort of insurance you’re looking for.

Actuarial tables

Most insurance companies hire actuaries, who are business specialists who estimate the risk of financial loss by utilizing mathematics and statistics to anticipate the likelihood of an insurance claim based on several of the criteria listed above. They usually create an actuarial table, which is given to the underwriting department of an insurance firm, which uses the information to establish policy premiums.

How to lower your premiums?

Risk assessment is the lifeblood of insurance firms. Premiums rise in direct proportion to the level of risk. There are still methods to save money on your insurance premiums.

Bundling your insurance is one option. If you have your vehicle, house, and life insurance policies with the same company, for example, you’ll almost certainly qualify for a discount.

Of course, reducing your coverage (e.g., raising your deductible) can save you money; nevertheless, this isn’t always the best option. Before making any selections, think about your situation and how likely you are to use the coverage.

There are other ways to save money on your insurance costs, but they require more effort. For example, most jurisdictions charge smokers up to 50% more for health insurance premiums than nonsmokers. For example, if you pay $600 a month for health insurance as a smoker, you might be able to cut your premium to $400 if you quit.

Another example: If you increase your credit score, you may be eligible for lower vehicle insurance premiums. This is due to the fact that those with lower credit ratings are statistically more likely to file a claim.

How much are insurance premiums?

Your insurance premium is the amount you pay each month to keep your insurance coverage. You may be able to pay monthly, quarterly, or annually, depending on the plan. Some plans require payment in advance before coverage begins.

The cost of insurance varies depending on the type of coverage and the person purchasing the policy. The amount you’ll pay is determined by a number of factors, the most important of which are the degree of coverage you’ll receive and personal information like your age and personal information. In the case of automobile insurance, this could imply your age and driving record. It could be based on personal behaviors like smoking or previous diseases for health insurance.

Does a higher insurance premium mean better insurance?

Certainly not. Because there are so many factors that go into deciding your premium, it’s possible that yours will be greater than someone else’s for the same coverage. For more comprehensive coverage, such as a smaller deductible, or for additional added services, such as roadside assistance or rental car coverage, you’ll typically pay a higher premium.

How can I lower my insurance premiums?

Choosing a lower level of coverage is the most guaranteed approach to cut your premiums. If you enjoy your current coverage, consider bundling (combining multiple types of insurance) to get multi-policy discounts. Some health insurance companies provide incentives to develop healthy habits, such as receiving a yearly health evaluation or attempting to quit smoking. Some auto insurance providers will also reduce your rates if you have a solid driving record or a strong credit score.


Even if your own circumstances may not appear to have altered, your premium is likely to change each time you renew your insurance. This is due to the fact that premiums are influenced by a variety of factors, including the cost of collaborating and changes in the way your risk is assessed. Premium costs will rise from time to time, regardless of how you look at it, and your personal premium may rise as a result of your higher risk level. In any event, if anything helps to reduce risk, it may be considered for a lower premium.

Tony Bennett

Tony Bennett

Tony Benett makes his living in the insurance industry by teaching and consulting. He is also recognized by the legal profession as an expert on insurance coverages. His insurance experience includes having worked at the company level, owned an independent general agency and having worked for an insurance association. He has received various certificates over the past few years and helps his clients and readers by giving them a realistic outlook on what they can expect to achieve within their set targets. At Insurance Noon, he is known for his in-depth analysis and attention to details with accuracy. He has been published as one of the most referred agents by his peers in the insurance community. Tony loves the outdoors and most sport events. His passion other than providing excellent advice is playing golf.