Most of us find a way to procrastinate when it comes to life insurance. We reason that we’re too young, too healthy, too careful, too unattached…and most of all, that there are just too many other things to spend our hard-earned money on. Often, having a baby is the milestone that flips the switch. Being a parent eliminates any question there may have been about whether anyone really depends on your income.
There will be a lot of gray areas post-children, like the difference between a healthy incentive and an end-of-your-rope bribe, the benefits of organic fruit snacks versus those bright blue ones with the goo in the middle that you loved as a kid, and that spot on your living room wall where you tried to clean up a Sharpie drawing with a Magic Eraser…but the importance of protecting your family is pretty black and white.
Why, then, do so many of us continue finding reasons to postpone life insurance even after we become parents?
Before we imply that this unfortunate avoidance is completely intentional, let's acknowledge that it's possible to get pretty deep into adulthood without actually having a conversation about life insurance. If we don't talk about it, it's easier not to think about it, and if we aren't thinking about it, it's easier to, well…not think about it. Most of us know, though, or at least have strong suspicions, that life insurance is pretty darn important when you have a family.
Yet here we are, way too many of us, with way too little coverage. Maybe none at all. It's not that we’re bad parents…we just aren't being completely honest with ourselves. So let's talk about a few of the most common lies we tell ourselves about life insurance.
- It's too expensive.
We recognize that every family's budget is different, so “expensive” is a relative term, but chances are, life insurance isn’t always as much as you think it is. How can we be so sure? Well, the 2016 Insurance Barometer Study by LIMRA and Life Happens (which is kind of a big deal if you're into insurance data) shows that on average, people overestimated the cost of a $250,000/20 year term life policy for a healthy 30 year old by about 250%. So whatever you think you'd be paying for life insurance could be two or three times more than you'd actually pay. Kind of feels like a more reasonable amount to pay now, doesn't it?
- OK, so it may not be that expensive after all…but there's still no way we can afford it.
This is a tough one, because we won't even pretend that rearranging the household budget is fun. But with over a million children under 18 living on very modest social security benefits because their parents passed away without coverage, we encourage you to take a deep breath and think about this: if your family is on a tight budget now, imagine how awful things could be with the sudden loss of an income. Then add funeral expenses and potentially medical bills to that situation, and see if it doesn't make you want to take a second look.
- My job isn’t hazardous, I’m a good driver, I’m in perfect health, and I’m NEVER going skydiving. I don’t think I’m dying anytime soon.
Obsessively worrying isn’t good for anyone, and we don’t recommend it at all. What we do recommend, though, is being gracefully realistic about your risk of death. And realistically, 6% of people who recently entered the workforce will pass away before reaching retirement age. Those might not seem like the worst odds, but you can be sure that the percentage of people who expect to die young is much lower. Life insurance lets you prepare for the worst so you can get back to aiming for the best. If paying for something you don’t feel like you’re using bums you out, just think of every premium payment as a little celebration of the fact that you haven’t died yet. #positivespin
Don’t spend your life worrying…spend it prepared!
Finding affordable life insurance can feel overwhelming, but that’s why we’re here. Our Life Covered℠ wants to take a hard conversation and make it a little softer…a little more user-friendly. If your family is one of the 30% not currently protected by life insurance, we’d love to have the chance to help you change that. Start with a free, no-commitment quote, and follow it all the way to simple, honest, peace of mind.