A Mom’s Perspective on Life Insurance and Common Misconceptions

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Prior to losing both of my parents, I had no idea how important life insurance was. I am that person who goes through life thinking nothing’s going to happen to me. I also felt like it equaled something happening—and, if I’m being completely honest—the thought of it scared me.

Then, I lost my mom unexpectedly. The life I previously knew changed within a matter of minutes. With that, I learned how little my mom was prepared. She didn’t really have a plan. She didn’t think ahead. She didn’t think something would happen. It became clear to me when closing her estate that I needed to have a plan in place for my children.

I learned a lot, and I learned that all of my preconceived ideas were way off. So many young couples like my husband and I think we are too young for life insurance or that we have plenty of time to plan it out. Wrong! Here are 10 of the most common misconceptions that I have learned in my journey:

  1. If you are young and healthy, you do not need life insurance.
    I never thought of it from this perspective, but life insurance is actually best purchased when you are young and healthy. The longer you wait to purchase, the more expensive it becomes. Purchasing earlier in life will save you money in the long run.
  2. If you are insured through your workplace, that is enough.
    The options provided by your employer may not be enough to make sure that your family and loved ones are financially secure with minimal impact on day to day finances upon your death. Additional life insurance is strongly recommended for those with multiple dependents.
  3. If you are single, you do not need it.
    We don’t tend to think about what happens after our death, but there are expenses that will be left for family to take care of in the case of an unfortunate accident. Funeral expenses and estate closures are things that life insurance payouts could cover for your loved ones.
  4. Life insurance is too expensive.
    Millennials on average over-estimate the cost by 213%. It’s not as expensive as you think! It can be as affordable as $10-$60 a month, depending on your age and what kind of coverage you select.
  5. It is only for Death Protection.
    A lot of people don’t realize cash values can be highlighted in policies to produce more than just a payout after death. To understand the benefits of life insurance while you are living, have a conversation with your provider.
  6. Life insurance is a waste of money if you live through the term of coverage.
    Term life insurance is the most affordable coverage since it expires after the term is complete, but there are also options if you are looking for a return upon expiration of the policy. There are plenty of ways to protect your investment, beyond the death benefit.
  7. Investing your money elsewhere is better than investing in life insurance.
    There are benefits to having life insurance in addition to other investments. They should not be viewed as two separate options, rather two investment tools that complement one another. Tax benefits and safety of investment are two reasons why this should be highlighted in the investment process.
  8. Only the bread winner in each family needs it.
    Do not underestimate contributions and financial implications if there is a tragedy to a stay at home parent. Childcare and home expenses often go overlooked when shopping for life insurance. Both parents should have a policy.
  9. Life insurance is confusing due to too many options.
    The multiple options for policies are provided to ensure that each person is given a policy that best suits their lifestyle and current situation. The best policy option can be determined through conversations with your insurance provider, and can be made as simple or as specific as you need.
  10. Policies do not need to be reviewed once purchased.
    Just like other important investments, life insurance should be discussed and updated when there are updates and changes to your life. Buying a home, getting married, and having a child are all events that call for review of your policy.

It’s my hope that hearing my story will help others understand the importance of life insurance. Give your agent a call and have a talk about it. Do it for your kids, your loved ones, and for your own peace of mind. Life is just too short to wait.

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