How long do I need life insurance for?

Aug 19, 2022

When getting life insurance, choose the policy’s duration. Life insurance: how long do I need it for?

Term life insurance is cheap and short-term. Permanent life insurance costs more but protects you for life.

What’s the best term life insurance length?
Unlike permanent life insurance, term life won’t cover your entire life. You choose the term length of your life insurance policy. Your coverage needs will determine the term.

Term Length
Term life insurance has multiple term lengths. 10-year, 20-year, and 30-year periods are frequent. There’s more. 15, 25, 35…and even 40-year periods are possible.

10-years is short-term. It can cover unanticipated occurrences.

For example, You may have refinanced your home or have other short-term debts.
Maybe you have a 10-year company loan may require life insurance.
Perhaps your health makes long-term coverage costly. Until your health improves, you can buy a 10-year term.

Young parents often choose a 20-year term to protect their children through college. It’s helpful for people with mortgages under 20 years.

30 years is the longest term most life insurance companies offer.  For all other firms, a 30-year term policy will give you the longest coverage. Newlyweds and young professionals love it. It’s fantastic for the family breadwinner.   

Coverage length
You must know why you’re buying term to determine how long your coverage should last. Need short-term coverage near retirement? Do you need 30-year income replacement? Your coverage goals determine its length.

Here are 3 options to determine how long your term life insurance coverage should last.

Some coverage beats none. Buy affordable term life insurance. Don’t buy an expensive policy. Don’t pay for an insurance that will lapse in a few years.

How old are you now? Your term life policy expires when? After your term, will you need another policy? Age affects your rate. These things should be figured out now to avoid surprises later.

What’s your coverage goal? Short-term or long-term? Do you need a simple funeral policy? Millionaires may require a policy to avoid estate taxes or leave an inheritance. Life insurance goals decide how long your coverage should last.

Do you have a mortgage? What’s the remaining balance? Make sure your coverage covers your mortgage, your biggest asset and responsibility.

If so, when? Will you need life insurance in retirement? Your life insurance needs will alter if you’ve saved for retirement.

Permanent life insurance?
Do you need whole-life insurance? Term life insurance won’t help. Permanent life insurance offers lifetime coverage and several possibilities.

Universal Life Insurance
Guaranteed Universal Life insurance offers policies to a particular age (GUL). You choose your GUL age. You can buy GUL through age 90, 95, 100, 105, 110, and 121.

GUL is good for senior shoppers. When 30-year terms aren’t available, GUL is a good option. Most companies do this in your 60s.

Whole-life insurance?
Whole life insurance has a place, but it’s pricey. Whole life has a level premium and lifetime coverage. It’s beneficial for cash growth, estate planning, and high-net-worth individuals.

How long to receive life insurance is complicated. Be careful when picking term life’s length. This information can help you and your family decide.