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Life insurance is an unpleasant topic to think about, but it's important to provide for your loved ones in the event that you die unexpectedly. When you decide to buy life insurance, you need to know the best way to shop.

There are several different types of life insurance but term Life insurance is affordable and easier to qualify for than whole life insurance. Term life insurance allows you to pay a reasonable monthly price during a set amount of time. If the policyholder dies during that time, the chosen beneficiaries will receive a death benefit to cover funeral costs and generally provide extra funds to help after the loss of a loved one. Though it is the cheap life insurance option, term life insurance policies have no cash value, unlike a whole life insurance plan.

That being said, the fixed payout and the fixed premiums make term life insurance dependable and predictable. If you can fit the premiums into your budget, you can trust that you will get a reliable payout. You can choose one of a few fixed terms, typically between 10, 20 or 30 years. Term life insurance can be bought directly from a company or via the internet but you may also find insurance agents that sell you policies. The way you purchase a policy can affect the quality of what you get.

Shopping for a Life Insurance Policy through an Agent

Shopping for life insurance with the help of an agent can be easier than doing the leg work yourself and it might be a good option if your goal is to have a simplified buying process. However, many agents only sell policies from a limited list of providers and may only present certain policies to you while ignoring other options. Because of this, shopping through an agent may mean missing out on potentially better policies.

If you do choose to use an agent, be sure to find one that is licensed by the state and offers you term life insurance quotes from multiple companies. If an agent tries to get you to buy a product or policy that you aren't sure about, that is a red flag and you should find a new agent or do the shopping on your own.

Shopping for a Life Insurance Policy Online

Shopping for life insurance online gives you a better picture of the industry as a whole. You can compare the top companies side by side right here on Money Saving Pro. When you've found one or multiple policies that look attractive you can get term life insurance quotes and compare them to one another. While shopping online, be sure you don't give out any personal information like a social security number. Term life insurance companies should only require basic information, provided anonymously.

If a website requires personal information to give you a quote, they are, at best, trying to get you on a mailing list and, at worst, trying to steal your information. To compare term life insurance companies here, all you need to do is enter your age, height and weight, and a few health questions. Then your potential quotes from the top providers.

Comparing Life Insurance Policies

When you are looking for life insurance there are a number of things to consider. What are the medical requirements and how do they affect the premium a company offers you? When should you buy a policy? How should you balance the best price with the best value? The term life insurance rates you receive will be based on a variety of factors but most companies look at the following factors first: age, gender, tobacco use, medical history and family health history. By answering questions like these, the company gets a general picture of the potential policy holder's life expectancy. Generally, the cheapest policies are offered to young and healthy applicants, but that also means those applicants might outlive their policy term.

Some companies will also want to know if you engage in dangerous hobbies like bungee jumping or deep sea diving. They may also look at other risk factors that might contribute to a policyholder's death, like travel to dangerous areas or a poor driving record. When you decide to buy a policy, companies may require you to confirm the information you provided by requesting medical records or taking physical exams. Life insurance providers may also look at your financial stability when determining a premium, especially if you are buying a large insurance policy. They may look at your persona credit history, your business credit report or they may even perform a criminal background check.

When Should You Buy a Policy?

Since you are purchasing a policy that only pays out if you die, timing is one of the most important aspects of buying term life insurance. However, even though policies are cheaper when you are younger, your age has less to do with whether or not you should buy insurance. Rather, the biggest factor is your financial dependents. If you are single, in your early 20s and you have no children, there isn't much reason you need term life insurance, especially since there is a good chance that you would outlive the longest term length.

The best time to buy a policy is when you have young children you depend on you financially. You can choose a term length based on how old your children are and how long you want them to have a financial safety net in the event that you die.

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