You wake up one day and it hits you. You’re married, possibly have a kid or two, maybe a mortgage. You’ve turned into one of THEM! You’ve become ... a grownup!
You also realize that these other people in your life count on you for their livelihood. That’s heavy stuff! If you’re no longer around, what will happen to them? You realize that you probably should have some life insurance, but you don’t know where to turn. Where do you start?
Here are four questions you need to answer as you start looking for life insurance:
- How much should I buy?
- What kind should I buy?
- From whom should I buy?
- When should I buy?
Let's talk about each of the answers.
1. How much life insurance you should buy, quite simply, is an amount that you can easily afford. A lot depends on what you are trying to accomplish, whether that's protecting your family, covering a debt, funding a business buy-out, or leaving a legacy. Ideally, you should buy the largest amount for which you can readily qualify, which generally will be up to 15 to 20 times your income. In most cases, the amount you can easily afford will be less than that guideline.
2. What type of life insurance you should buy depends on your answer to question #1. If you have a large need for coverage, but few dollars, term insurance is the most likely product to provide the coverage at the most reasonable cost. However, if your goals are more long-range, and you have the disposable income to handle it, a permanent policy, like universal life or whole life, may be a better fit. Or perhaps a combination of term and permanent may be your best option if you have a combination of short- and long-term goals. In the end, you should buy whatever kind will have the best chance of being in effect when you need it.
3. From whom should you buy? Well, there are a lot of websites available that say they can sell you life insurance, but they leave it up to you to know what it is you want to buy. That may be good for research, but not much else. Your best bet is to contact a professional insurance agent, someone who understands life insurance and can help you make a decision on what best fits your individual needs. Check with whoever handles your car or home insurance; they probably sell life insurance, too. You know and trust that agent, so who better to handle your life insurance coverage?
4. When should you buy? TODAY, of course! Your health will never be better than it is right now, and you’ll never be any younger. And while you may have more money at some point in the future, you have a need for the coverage TODAY. And besides, based on the answers to the first two questions, you're talking about a payment amount that you can easily afford.
Life insurance is very different from property-casualty insurance. Life insurance is not something you can touch, like a car or a house. Life insurance, more than anything else, is simply a promise—a promise that, in the end, everything will be OK.
You see, life insurance is the one "magical" product that can transform a horrible situation—the untimely death of a loved one or a business partner—from a true tragedy to something that, while still devastating, allows life to go on with minimal interruption. It is the only product that can replace a family's income stream, provide cash to allow a business to continue to operate, fund a college education when a death takes the breadwinner, or leave a legacy for future generations that is more than the individual could amass on his or her own, and do all of those things at exactly the moment the money is needed. Nothing else can do that.
Call us! We can help!