Two Easy Ways to Get Term Life Insurance: Online or Over the Phone
Buying life insurance can seem overwhelming for many people. To start, it can be a difficult conversation to have with loved ones. There’s also a vast amount of information available on the topic, and many options to consider. Here, we’ll help you understand how to buy life insurance and we’ll evaluate two easy ways you can get term life insurance quotes and apply for coverage—online or through a sales representative.
According to a recent survey from LIMRA, 29% of Americans plan to buy a life insurance policy online.1 While that’s convenient for some people, there are still many Americans who prefer to purchase their policies by calling a company directly.
According to Frank Muscat, Senior Assistant Vice President at Amica, there isn’t a “wrong or right way” to secure life insurance for your family. Depending on your comfort level with the information available, you may choose to shop online, speak with a specialist over the phone or do both.
Here’s what you should know about the two approaches, so you can decide what’s right for you.
Approach 1: The Convenience of Online Quotes
The internet offers a plethora of content to help consumers understand which life insurance products are available—and how to use them. In addition, many websites let you compare quotes and complete the applications online. Plus, depending on your health and how much life insurance you need, you may not need an in-person medical exam, which can expedite the process.
Muscat says, “The internet allows you to self-service your life insurance purchase experience, and more people are taking advantage of that capability.”
Online applications let you buy life insurance any time, any day of the week. You can go through the quoting process in the evening or on the weekend, during your free time.2
If you do choose to buy life insurance online, you’ll want to know ahead of time what type of policy you need, as well as how much life insurance you’d like to purchase. Here are two basic policy types:
Term life insurance:
This type of policy covers you for a specific time period. Typically, term life insurance policies are available for periods of 10, 15, 20, 25 and 30 years. Once you get a policy, your rate and coverage stay the same to the end of the term.
Whole life insurance:
This type of policy can help protect your family for a lifetime. Usually, whole life insurance policies are more costly, for a number of reasons, including because your coverage is guaranteed for the lifetime of the insured. It won’t change as you get older, nor will your premiums increase. Due to their slightly higher level of complexity, most whole life policies are not available for a quote and online application.
Another tip: To expedite the online buying process, it helps to have information gathered ahead of time. This way, you won’t have to stop to search for documentation. Before starting your quote, you’ll want to gather your:3
- Social Security number
- Driver’s license number
- Recent medical history, including height, weight and general health history for yourself and your family
You’ll also want to know how much life insurance you need coverage to purchase. To help you decide, here are some questions to answer:4
- How much debt do you have? (Think about your mortgage, as well as car loans and credit card debt.)
- Do you have children who plan to attend college?
- How old are your children?
- On average, how much are your monthly bills?
- Do you have a small business that you need to maintain?
- Do you want to leave a legacy for your family?
- What kind of funeral or end-of-life plan do you have?
- Do you currently have life insurance that you purchased or through your job?
- Do you have an emergency savings that your family can rely on?
- What other expenses do you think your family will need to pay for in your absence?
The bottom line: It’s easy and convenient to purchase a policy online if you have a good understanding of life insurance and know which type of policy you’d like to buy ahead of time. If you’re unsure of the answers to the questions above or want to talk through them further with a professional, buying life insurance online might not be your best option. Muscat says, “Purchasing life insurance online is well-suited to someone who’s been through the process before.” It’s also helpful for consumers who want to adjust their current policies by adding more coverage through the purchase of an additional policy. You may want to do this if you just had a baby or take on new debt, such as a mortgage or college tuition.
Approach 2: The Personal Attention of a Sales Representative
A sales representative can help you understand life insurance terminology and offer advice about the right amount of coverage for your specific situation. When you have questions or want to talk through your options, it makes sense to speak with a sales representative directly
You may want to call a life insurance sales representative directly if:
- It’s your first time buying life insurance
- You’re uncertain about the life insurance buying process
- You’re unsure how much coverage your family may need
- You’d like to get recommendations from an experienced representative
- You have a unique situation that isn’t readily addressed online
- You’re interested in multiple life insurance products
Some companies let you start the application process online. If you have questions along the way, you can talk to a sales representative later. Amica’s secure website will save your application, so your sales representative can seamlessly reference it during your phone call and help you complete it.
At Amica, we offer term life insurance policies online or through a sales representative. If you’d like to purchase a whole life policy or convert your current term life policy to a whole life policy, it’s best to call one of our licensed insurance agents at 800-234-5433800-234-5433.
Remember, buying life insurance is a big step. It requires you to consider difficult questions about how you’ll take care of your family if you’re no longer there. Above all, choose the approach that works best for you and makes you feel most comfortable.
- 2020 Insurance Barometer Study, Life Happens and LIMRA, 2020
- Interview with Frank Muscat CLU, ChFC, Senior Assistant Vice President at Amica, March 8, 2021.
- How to Buy Life Insurance the Easy Way, moneyunder30.com, 2021
- 10 Best Tips If You’re Buying Life Insurance For The First Time, Forbes, 2020