COVID-19 update included
The content of this report will be updated with the latest scenarios based on the global COVID-19 Pandemic


The attitudes, preferences, and behaviors of customers purchasing term assurance in the past 12 months differed depending on whether the policy was purchased to be linked to a mortgage or not. 89.2% of customers who purchased a non-mortgage-related term assurance policy had a mortgage. This highlights that the current mortgage-related products on offer may not be meeting the needs of their target market.

Non-mortgage-related term assurance customers are more confident in purchasing without advice than mortgage-related customers. More use price comparison sites to research before purchasing and more purchase direct from an insurer through the online space. Meanwhile, Customers linking a policy to their mortgage are likely to be seeking professional advice through the mortgage process. Many customers also purchased their term assurance policy with advice, which may have been arranged at the same time as a mortgage.

It is harder to identify the trigger of customers not linking their policy to a mortgage. Many said there was no key trigger for their purchase. However, growing old or having children did play a part and could be used as approaches to market these policies. Four in 10 term assurance customers are likely to consider using activity trackers in conjunction with their life insurance policy, which is a positive finding given industry developments in this space.

Providers must seek to understand customers in order to encourage them to purchase cover. A range of factors must be acknowledged within policy design, purchasing channels, and marketing strategies.

The report "How Customers Purchase Term Assurance 2018", explores the attitudes, behaviors, and preferences of customers who purchased a term assurance policy in the last 12 months. It explores distribution and the purchasing journey, policy purchase triggers, the financial concerns of customers, perceptions around activity trackers, and brand selection. It also sizes the term assurance market using Association of British Insurers data.


  • In 2017, 36% of in-force term assurance contracts were linked to a mortgage.
  • Speaking to an IFA or broker was the most common pre-purchase activity in 2018 among mortgage-related term assurance customers.
  • Purchasing direct from an insurer is the most common channel used by non-mortgage-related term assurance customers.

Reasons To Buy

  • Understand consumer purchasing decisions and how these will influence the market over the next few years.
  • Improve customer engagement by recognizing what is most important to them and how insurers can adapt their products and services to meet their needs.
  • Discover which providers lead the way in the term assurance space.
  • Adapt your distribution strategy to ensure it still meets customer purchasing behaviors.