A Midwestern insurer is trying to save money on real estate.

Conseco Inc., Carmel, Ind., says it plans to vacate the offices that its Bankers Life and Casualty Company subsidiary now occupies in Chicago’s famous Merchandise Mart.

The Bankers Life operations will move to 600 W. Chicago Ave., where most of the subsidiary’s operations already are located, Conseco says.

Conseco also plans to sell one of its 6 office buildings in Carmel and to sell a Des Moines, Iowa, office building that formerly was used by one of its subsidiaries.

Conseco will record a charge of $20 million in connection with the real estate consolidation, but the changes should free up capital and cut operating costs by about $6 million per year, according to Conseco Chief Executive C. James Prieur.