Saturday, November 23, 2013

Life Insurance for the 50+ Crowd

If you are over the age of 50, chances are you have been bombarded by insurance brokers and salespeople trying to sell you a life insurance policy. They come at you from all angles – on TV, in the mail, over the Internet -- telling you every possible reason why you may or may not need certain features within a policy.

But what does all of it mean? Do you even need to buy these policies? Is it worth it? You want to make sure that if you do end up buying a life insurance policy that it makes financial sense for you. This means taking your time and choosing the right insurance plan based on your lifestyle and financial situation. 

Help Protect Your Loved Ones’ Future

The biggest reason most seniors carry life insurance is that they want to help provide money for expenses and debts so that their kids or grandkids won’t be left to pay for them. A home mortgage, funeral expenses and other large expenses can surface after a person dies and add to the suffering of surviving loved ones. The bottom line is, you do not want your loved ones to experience a financial loss after you die.

Cover Funeral Expenses

As much as most of us hate to think about it, there will be a day when we are no longer on this Earth. Chances are there will be some sort of post-life ceremony in your honor, be it a memorial service or funeral. We often underestimate the cost of such an event, but for those who are unaware how much money it costs, it can be an astronomical fee. According to some estimates, an average funeral today costs about $6,000. So be sure to factor in burial or final expenses into your life insurance policy decisions. 

Provide a Financial Safety Net

If you are in still earning a decent income when you suffer an untimely death, it may be difficult for your loved ones who depend on you financially to live. Your surviving spouse may not be able to comfortably retire and your children or grandchildren may not have enough to go to college. This is when having a good life insurance policy is very important.

Even if you are older and living the retired life without earning a big income, your family finances should be stable. If you had a life insurance policy in place from earlier in life when you were earning more money and your expenses were higher, it may be time to adjust your life insurance policy to see that it fits your current needs.

Find the Right Type of Coverage

There is such thing as term life insurance, which covers you for a specific amount of time, usually 20-30 years. Or, another option may be a whole or universal life policy, which is a form of permanent insurance that does not end after a specific number of years.

Consulting with a trusted financial planner or insurance agent is a good way to find out what type of coverage, how much and for how long you need. Having a life insurance policy in your back pocket can help ensure that your golden years are comfortable, secure and enjoyable.

By Samantha Rivers
Samantha Rivers is a freelance writer and editor who covers insurance, finance and related topics both online and in print. She is an editor for and can be found on Twitter @sassysammybee.

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