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Life cover is generally touted as appropriate for married couples and family breadwinners. 

But a direct marketing company, Olico, has found that the most common buyer of life assurance is not married, doesn’t have children, and doesn’t own a home. 

In a study of more than 10 000 applicants who applied for the life asssurance products Olico markets, it was found that people were taking out life cover for various reasons. 

The head of sales at Olico, Gareth Mountain, says there are a number of reasons people take out life cover, including to cover debt, but also because aspirational younger people are moving to more sophisticated products. 

Funeral plans have traditionally been more popular than life policies in South Africa, but the survey found that younger people are the most common owners of life assurance, moving away from mass-marketed funeral plans.

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PERSONAL FINANCE