Shopping for Life Insurance Does Not Have to Be Complicated

According to the Insurance Information Institute (III), technology and competition have made it easier for consumers to find the right life insurance policy. With hundreds of companies offering many policies, consumers have a wide selection.

They expect term life insurance premium rates to drop 4 percent this year compared to last year due to falling death rates for the 25-44 age group. Over the past ten years, this group has been the primary age range for purchasing life insurance. Premium rates for whole traditional life, universal life, and variable universal life insurance are also expected to decrease in 2007.

Think of these when shopping for life insurance.

The III recommends that consumers use the following criteria when shopping for life insurance:

1.   Price: Premiums for life insurance vary from company to company, and consumers should compare prices before buying a policy. The insurer will want to know the age of potential policyholders, the type of policy they seek (term or permanent), and the amount of insurance they wish to purchase.

2.   Budget: Paying for life insurance is often a long-term commitment. Consumers need to ensure they can pay the premiums and keep whatever policy they purchase active.

3.   Insurer Stability: Rating agencies assess the financial strength of life insurers. You can access this information online at websites such as and

4.   Insurer Customer Service: Each state regulates the insurance business within its boundaries. In addition, many states issue publicly available reports indicating the number of complaints a licensed life insurer has received over time. This information can be found on state insurance department websites. The Insurance Marketplace Standards Association is another excellent source of information. (

The III recommends purchasing a new policy before you cancel your existing coverage. You should also remember that if your health status has changed, you might no longer be insurable at the same rate.

Lifestyle changes such as marriage, divorce, the birth of a child, or starting a business can change your insurance needs. Let your insurance agent, Brian Gruss, know about these changes so they can ensure you have the right type and amount of coverage you require.