life bouy moneyAnyone who’s even walked past a television in the last five years likely knows the rest of this tagline. 15 minutes could save you 15% or more on your car insurance. And you know what? It’s absolutely true! Not just with this particular insurance company and not just with auto insurance but that statement is true for almost all insurances if people took the 15 minutes to shop them. But according to industry estimates, most people just don’t.

An estimated 33% of people with auto insurance NEVER shop their rates. 50% of home owners NEVER shop their rates. For those that do shop their home and auto coverage, the average annual savings is $1100! $1100 for 15 minutes is a pretty good hourly wage! Possibly the most dramatic savings or improvements, though, come from the least reviewed type of insurance, life insurance. An estimated 80% of consumers NEVER shop or compare their life insurance but for those who take the 15 minutes to shop their life insurance, the savings and improvements available can be down right staggering.

Over the past 15 years, no insurance has changed more than life insurance and almost all of those changes are for the betterment of consumers. Since the late 1990’s, life insurance rates have fallen by as much as 70%! New mortality tables were introduced in the early 2000’s which reduced the cost of insurance dramatically. The internet has also helped lead to an increase in competitive pricing and better products. Many life insurance policies now provide Living Benefits like being able to use part of the death benefit to pay for long term care expenses like a nursing home or assisted living facility.

Unfortunately, all of these improvements are only available on new policies. Older policies are stuck with the benefit (or lack thereof), expenses, fees and mortality tables, etc that they started with.

Here’s an example- this week I talked with a 55yr man in average health. He had a cash value policy with a death benefit of $144,000 and cash value of $48,000. He’d had the policy since 1984 and the policy was “paid up” meaning the cash value was sufficient to cover the expenses. So in this case, the insurance company is saying, if you let us use your $48,000, we will give your family $144,000 when you pass away. Really not a bad deal right? But what if you take 15 minutes to talk with an independent agent and ask the question, “What would other companies give me for the use of my $48,000?” In his case, we were able to get $227,000 of death benefit and he can access that to pay for LTC expenses. The new policy is guaranteed and “paid up”. It simply provides an additional $83,000 for his family should he die and additional funds to pay for a nursing home should he need it.

And do you want to know the most amazing part? It really is as simply as a 15 minute call to see if you might be eligible for policy upgrades or reduced premiums. With just some basic policy information and a 15 minute call, we are usually able to tell if improvements are possible and/or likely. No matter what type of life insurance you have, you should shop and compare your coverage regularly. Call our office today to schedule your review; you might be shocked at the results!