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5 Tips for Buying Life Insurance

Are you interested in purchasing a life insurance policy? If so, you might want to keep a few buying tips in mind. This way, you can be certain to find the policy that best suits your needs while also keeping the costs low.


Tip #1: Ask for a Buyer's Guide

Most states require insurance companies to provide buyer's guides to those who are interested in purchasing life insurance. In this guide, you will find definitions of life insurance terms and benefits as well as the cost of obtaining various policies. This guide is a good starting point for getting yourself more comfortable with life insurance and what it can provide to you.

Tip #2: Check on Licensing

Before you sign any paperwork or even before you get too involved in discussions with an insurance agent or company, you should check with your state insurance department to make certain the agent and the company are properly licensed in your state.

Similarly, you need to make certain you are not working with a supposed insurance agent or investor who is nothing but a scam artist. If an investor approaches you and offers to buy your insurance policy, it is best to refuse the "opportunity." Not only is this practice ethically questionable because it involves wagering against human life, there are also potential financial problems associated with this process. For example, you may find yourself facing unexpected fees and taxes as well as having your privacy compromised.

Tip #3: Select a Company that is Financially Strong

Since you will be counting on the life insurance company to provide your dependents with a financial benefit if you pass away, you want to make certain the company you work with is financially strong and capable of providing you with the coverage you need. Some resources you can use to gauge the financial strength of the company include Moody's Investor Services, A.M. Best Company, Standard and Poor's Insurance Rating Service, Fitch Ratings and Weiss Ratings.

Tip #4: Answer Questions on Your Application Truthfully

Although you might be tempted to stretch the truth a little when filling out your application for life insurance, it is best to be completely honest when filling it out. If you are provided a policy based on misleading information, it could be invalidated and your dependents will be left without a death benefit. Furthermore, when you undergo the medical screening, the truth will come out about your eating habits, your smoking habits and whether or not you are in good physical health.

Tip #5: Make Sure Everything is Accurate

Before you sign a life insurance policy and start making premium payments, make certain the information contained on the policy is accurate and complete. Never sign a policy that contains blanks and never accept a policy that isn't filled out completely. Along the same lines, it is also essential for you to make your check payable to the insurance company rather than to the agent. In addition, be sure to get a receipt. This way, you can be confident the policy is legally in full force.