With all the ongoing financial drama, television networks are falling all over themselves to interview experts on this and that and what the heck we should do to protect our retirement. Just by the sheer luck of the draw I ran into three Suze Orman interviews within the past week.
Personally I think the advice she gives on the economy and investments is either stolen from someone else or worse yet, made up on the spur of the moment from her own, very original, lack of expertise. But, let’s just accept for the minute that she is clueless on financial matters and move on to something where she is on a level playing field with all of the other advice givers today. None of them understand why people buy life insurance.
They all have an opinion on term insurance versus whole life, universal life versus variable universal life, etc, but I honestly don’t think they understand that the reason people buy life insurance is because……some of them don’t live as long as we think they will. As they provide advice on this tactic or that tactic of how to salvage as much of your 401k as possible and flip out advice about “as long as you have 15 or 20 years”, they are all avoiding the subject of life insurance and how it can keep this economic car wreck from turning into one family’s personal train wreck.
This is precisely the time when they should be inserting into every interview the need, the urgent need, for people to have adequate term life insurance in force not only to replace lost income if someone dies prematurely, but also to replace the investments that may never have a chance to come back with the breadwinner out of the picture. They should talk about the need for stay at home parents to have adequate insurance because if things get worse, going forward the surviving parent may not have the luxury of just working one job and may need the life insurance proceeds to pay for child care and school.
Bottom line. The world is full of good advice and it’s also full of people that BS for a living and personally I think Suze deserves a plaque in that particular hall of fame. If you don’t know what life insurance is for, don’t give advice on how to buy it.