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Whether you know it or not, you are a “risk” in the eyes of insurance companies. If you are like most people — you’re not an Olympic athlete but you don’t have serious health problems — then you are probably what is called a “standard risk.” Standard risk individuals qualify for an insurance company’s standard rates. If you are in better than average health though, you could be a “preferred risk” and qualify for lower, preferred rates.
Can you change your rating from standard to preferred and get lower rates?
Yes and no. Some things about your health you can’t change. But there are lifestyle choices you can make: quitting smoking, for example, or taking steps to lower your cholesterol or get your weight down so that you’ll become a better risk and improve your rating. Each company has its own standards but, if you demonstrate improvements for a year or two, most will consider that evidence of permanent improvement and will consider you for preferred status.
Here are some of the factors insurance companies consider when categorizing someone as a preferred risk.
But keep in mind that definitions of standard and preferred risks vary from company to company: