Life Insurance Types

Before you apply for the best rates, you’ll want to know what type of protection is best for you. Here is an explanation of the common types of coverage to help you decide what policy is right for you.

Term Life Options

Term life insurance is usually the cheapest and most straightforward type of plan. Term offerings provide protection for a specified period, usually 10, 20, or 30 years. If your death occurs while the policy is in effect, your beneficiaries will receive a death benefit. If you are still alive when the period is up, your protection expires unless you renew the policy. You do not accumulate cash value, so it does not double as an investment vehicle. Here are some pros and cons to consider when shopping for a plan:

  • Provides temporary coverage for people who need it
  • Gives large amount of protection for small cost
  • Can convert into permanent offering in most cases
  • Receive death benefits income-tax free
  • Can be used to supplement other coverage when you need extra protection
  • Premiums will increase as you age and might become unaffordable
  • Doesn’t build cash value and coverage ends unless you renew

Permanent Life Offerings

When you are shopping for the coverage, you might also consider permanent protection for more lasting coverage. As its name implies, permanent plans offer coverage over your lifetime, or with some policies, up to a certain age at which you are paid the policy’s cash value. Permanent offerings also double as investment tools, as they can accrue cash value over time. With some options, you can borrow against this value or withdraw it to cover expenses like college tuition. The pros and cons of are:

  • Build cash value on tax-deferred basis over time
  • Provides a lifetime of coverage with consistent premiums
  • More economical than term alternatives in the long-run
  • Can withdraw or borrow against cash value
  • Permanent overage is initially more costly than temporary alternatives
  • Loans against the cash value reduce the death benefit
  • Canceling or surrendering the agreement may subject you to taxes on its value