Important Tips on Buying a Life Insurance Policy

Introduction

Life Insurance comes with many benefits. Nowadays, life insurance isn’t just a contract between the insurer and insured, which provides protection against risk of life by paying a premium. For sustainability in the market, every company and product need to adopt the current demand and circumstances and same goes with the life insurance products too. In these years of change in the market, regulator and life insurance companies have taken major steps to meet the changing demands which have provided customers with following options and benefits:-

  • Wide range of product portfolio
  • Options of saving and investment
  • Added benefits with life insurance
  • Different ways of getting low premium and high coverage
  • Additions in list of key features of life insurance polices
  • Transparency and hassle free procedure

With a pool of different companies, products and benefits to choose from, you need to pick out the best one for you. There are many things which you need to keep in mind before buying insurance and there is no specific guideline for choosing the best one, it all depends on your need and situation. But there are some important points related to every policy which can help you to filter the best insurance policies. Based on those important points, we have outlined following important tips for buying a life insurance policy.

Tips

  • Start early

Buying a Life insurance when you are young, gives you a lot of benefit. You will be able to get high coverage at a very low rate of premium because age has a direct effect the premium rate (younger the buyer, lower the premium is). In addition, with low premium, you will get better financial planning, long duration of coverage and your premium will be locked at a very low rate for your entire policy term.

  • Choose the right coverage amount

Don’t decide your policy coverage on your feelings or on calculations based on single factors (like 10 times of your salary). While deciding upon the coverage amount, always consider your current lifestyle, debts, assets, future obligation (college education of children, settlement of your family to different locations, etc.), and rate of inflation. Choosing low coverage will give you zero benefit while choosing a high coverage will be a costly deal for you.

  • Comparison is the key

Comparison is very much necessary before buying an insurance policy. It helps you to choose the best policy at the best rate. There will be many polices which will not offer benefits which you are looking and may be available at different rates. There are many IRDAI certified comparison portals which provide a comparison of different policies on their websites which is unbiased and easy.

  • Choose the right policy

Different policies have different benefits, eligibility criteria, terms and conditions, exclusions and inclusions. You can choose the right policy for yourself only if you know about it well. So the key in choosing the right product is better understanding about it. Know about the riders available, add on benefits, what is not covered under your policy, premium rates and all other aspects related to your policy. Know your needs well and then find policies accordingly.

  • Choose the right company

There are more than 20 companies in India and it very much necessary to choose a trustworthy company. There are some companies which provide best insurance policies and are trustworthy also. You need to check the claim settlement ratio, review (by customer and experts), claim settlement process, product portfolio, price, etc. of different companies to choose the right one.

  • Understand the brochure

There is a brochure available with every Life Insurance product which is available on the company’s website. It contains all the key benefits, features, eligibility, inclusions, exclusion, term and condition related to the policy. Go through every fine line of the brochure to understand your policy well. It will help you to use the available benefits and avoid any bad surprises in future.

  • Disclose your information correctly in the proposal form

Some people hide facts about themselves while filling the proposal form and giving personal details to the company. For example, some people tick themselves as a non-smoker while giving details to get low rate of premiums. But later, at the claims stage, it could result in zero benefit as the claim will be rejected due to misleading information provided by the insured. You can’t fool the company by giving wrong information. So to avoid any hassle during the policy or at the time of making claims, it is always necessary to provide the right information about yourself to the company.

Never buy a Life Insurance policy in a hurry because it’s a decision which will have an effect on your whole life. Give some time for research and understanding your needs well because a policy bought with precision gives you exactly what you want.

Finding the Right Insurance Policy

Although life insurance is technically an “option”, if you have people that you love you need to consider what would happen to them in the even of your death. It can place additional undo stress on them and they already have to deal with so much. When you find the right insurance it can put your mind as well as theirs at ease.

There are many different plans available, some will cover chronic illness, loss and some include a clause that will pay the mortgage payments if you own a home. In order to find the best life insurance protection you need to get as much information on the different types of policies, etc. You can start by going online and filling out some forms to obtain a few quotes from the different companies available.

This insurance is a lump sum of cash that is tax free provided in the event your death, assuming that the policy is active at the time of death. Normally they include monetary amounts for burial, and other necessary arrangements that happen as well. It is pretty impossible to arrange a decent burial for under a few thousand dollars, so finding the right life insurance policy will make it that much easier on your loved ones.

Often time’s when people over 65 attempt to obtain life insurance they can find it difficult to get coverage as they may be considered a higher risk. However, when checking on the Internet you will find many companies that actually specialize in certain types of policies and many offer packages that will include that type of policy.

Companies may deny providing a policy for several reasons, but the majority of them are rejected due to the risk involved. For instance, if you have some type of a permanent illness they may deny issuing you a policy; but again, go online and run a search for companies that specialize in what is considered high risk coverage, it may be more expensive than other policies but the peace of mind it offers in the end may just be worth it.

If you already have insurance be sure to check over the coverage provided to ensure that it will still meet all of the necessary requirements. If you have a policy that included some type of mortgage coverage be sure that it will still cover everything, maybe you had to take out a second mortgage or something similar, and your current policy will not pay it off completely. In that case you may want to find a life insurance policy with coverage that will cover everything or you can attempt to increase the coverage through your current insurance company.

Finding the right policy for you and your loved ones is essential if you want them to feel protected and secure after your demise. It means not having to worry that the house will be foreclosed on your family will be on the street; or that they will have to go in debt just to cover the burial expenses.

Life Insurance Policies: Term vs Permanent

When it comes to purchasing life insurance, deciding which kind of policy to buy can be a challenge. But by learning about the characteristics of available life insurance policies and working together with an experienced life insurance agent, you’ll be able to choose the right policy to protect your loved ones.

Term Life Insurance

As the name suggests, term life insurance provides coverage for a certain period of time, as specified in your policy. This means that a death benefit will only be paid out if you die within your policy’s term. Because of this central characteristic, term life insurance policies tend to be much cheaper than permanent life insurance policies–making it a very appealing option to young adults or families who can’t spend a lot on life insurance.

Though term life insurance comes in two forms–level term (pays the same death benefit no matter when you die during the term) and decreasing term (the death benefit decreases throughout the duration of the policy)–level term policies are by far the most popular.

According to the Insurance Information Institute (I.I.I.) common types of level term policies are:

  • Annual (least popular)
  • 5 year
  • 10 year
  • 15 year
  • 20 year (most popular)
  • 25 year
  • 30 year

Many term life insurance policies are renewable, which means that you may be able to reinstate your policy after the term ends, although reinstatement may be contingent on passing a medical exam and will likely involve an increased premium. Additionally, the I.I.I. reports that most insurers will not renew a policy ending after 80 years of age.

Premiums for term life insurance are typically based on your age and health status at the time the policy is written. Some insurers guarantee your premiums to stay the same throughout the length of the term, but others may not make that guarantee (and increase your premiums throughout the term)–so be sure you’re aware of premium provisions before signing a policy.

Life insurance tip: Buying life insurance when you’re young and healthy will help you secure low premiums. Not a spring chicken? Take care of your health–stop smoking and exercise regularly to get the lowest insurance premium.

Permanent Life Insurance

Unlike term life insurance, permanent life insurance pays a death benefit whether you die they day after you sign the policy or 50 years later. Permanent life insurance policies are also appealing because of their ability to grow tax-deferred over a certain length of time–which can result in a large chunk of change. This cash value can be used in a variety of ways, providing additional benefits to policyholders and their families.

Because of these characteristics, permanent life insurance policies tend to be more expensive than term policies, which may not be conducive for young adults or families with income limitations.

Life insurance tip: Some term life policies can be converted to permanent life insurance policies, so if you’re interested in a permanent policy but can’t afford the premiums, ask your agent about term policies with this feature.

Permanent life insurance policyholders also have a wide array of policy options to choose from. The four common types of permanent life insurance are whole, universal, variable and variable-universal.

Whole life policies are the most common form of permanent life insurance and offer both a death benefit and the additional benefit of a savings account. If you buy a whole life policy, you agree to pay a certain amount for a predetermined death benefit. And, unlike a term life policy, whole life policies have the potential to earn annual dividends–which will earn interest if you let them accrue.

Universal life policies offer more flexibility, allowing you to vary how much you pay and when you make premium payments (with some limitations, of course). You may also be able to obtain a larger death benefit, provided you pass a medical exam, and like whole life policies, your universal policy may earn cash value over time.

Variable life policies incorporate a death benefit with a savings account that you can invest in stocks, bonds or mutual funds. While this may increase the value of your policy, it’s important to remember that if your investments don’t perform well, your death benefit will decrease. To avoid this, the I.I.I. says you can ask about variable policies that guarantee that the death benefit will not fall below a certain amount.

Variable-universal policies combine the features of variable and universal life policies, meaning that you have the investment options of a variable policy and the flexibility of premium payments of a universal policy.

Which Policy is Right for You?

Now that you have some idea of what policy options appeal to you, take the time to speak with a licensed life insurance professional that can answer questions and help you come closer to your life insurance decision. Because when you have all the facts, it makes finding affordable life insurance that much easier!

Advantages of a Whole Life Insurance Policy And Why You Need It

Whole Life Insurance policies are more expensive than the more popular Term Life Insurance policies but with the extra expense comes additional options that make Whole Life policies more attractive to many consumers when compared to Term Life policies. The most glaring advantage of Whole Life Insurance, besides the lack of expiration date, is the ability of the insured to take out a loan with the cash accrued by the policy, so long as the premiums are kept up to date, the policy and its advantages do not expire until the insured does. The term life policy, however, can expire before the death benefit is paid out, thus leaving the previously insured person in a position of attempting to find a new policy or renew the other policy at an older age that brings with it, higher insurance premiums.

Whole Life Insurance policies carry with them additional features that are hard for some people to resist, as well as beneficial riders that most people deem necessary for extra protection for their loved ones. The most popular riders added to the whole life policies are accident benefits and accrued benefits in the case of disability.

It is true that whole life insurance is more costly that term life insurance, but its premium is the same throughout life, as the policy is guaranteed throughout the insured’s life as well. Term life insurance might be cheaper for the first term, maybe twenty years for a policy, but then the renewal will base the insured’s new premium on their new “older” age and mortality bracket. If at this time the consumer decides upon a whole life policy at this older and wiser age, the premium will be phenomenally more than it would have been for the same dollar value policy twenty years earlier. In the end, the consumer ends up paying thousands of dollars more in the long run, having to purchase a more expensive life insurance policy later in life, and additionally, he or she does not have the extra twenty years of savings and investment income from the whole life policy. So, ageing might bring with it wisdom, but it also brings higher insurance premiums as well. In the case of whole life insurance, it pays to do a bit of research in order to make the better choice the first choice.

Those opposed to whole life policies will use the time honored saying, “Keep Insurance and Investments Separate!” However, as good as this idea may seem, it does not go on to explain that the consumers are expected to use the money they save each month with the cheaper term life premium and use that “extra” cash to invest and make money by investing themselves. First, a person must be committed to take an amount of money that is touted as “extra” and invest it each month in whatever they see fit. Second, in this time of financial hardship, people who are short on “extra” money might not really have the excess to invest, and probably wouldn’t know where to start when it came to investments and stock portfolios and the like. So, it might cost more in the beginning, but the whole life insurance carrier knows how to invest that “extra” money the insured consumers so willingly pay into their future and their families’ future every month. Leave investing to those in the loop and remember it is always easier to do things right the first time!