My Personal Finance Journey

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Life Insurance Rates Are About To Drop

Contributed by mm | March 29, 2004 5:31 AM PST

MSN Money reports that because of the potential adoption of, a new mortality table, term life insurance premium is expected to decline further. The article went in great depth to explain that term life insurance is more or less a commodity market in which price is the sole differentiator, and thus the new mortality table, which will require insurers to put asider smaller reserves, is almost certain to trigger another price war.

I believe the three advices from the article makes perfect sense too:

1) Don't put off buying insurance if you need it: Unlike whole life insurance, term life insurance cannot lock one in with cash value (there is no cash value in term life insurance) so if the rate declines, one can always switch insurers.

2) Check term insurance policies at least every couple of years. Term4Sale, AccuQuote and InsWeb are great resources for comparison shopping.

3) Don't let price be your only guide. Ratings are important. What can be worse if your insurer goes backruptcy and no one else wants to write a new policy for you?

With the life insurance through my employer's benefits, I'm buying term life insurance for about 5 times of my annual salary for myself, or 2.5 times of my annual salary for my wife. I feel I probably should double the coverage, making sure if some catastrophe happens, my family can survive without financial burdens. I just checked out Term4Sale, and it appears I can get $500,000 term life insurance from an A++ insurer for:

$180-$195/year for 10-year guaranteed, or
$215-$220/year for 15-year guaranteed, or
$285-$290/year for 20-year guaranteed

I will probably go for the 10-year or 15-year term, with the reasoning that after that period of time, I probably don't need further coverage because I should be able to accumulated the $1M for early retirement. I will report back if I decide to buy additional term life insurance.

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