My Dad died 3 years ago this month and had a total of $7500 worth of life insurance. My Mom has a $2500 burial policy and is still going strong at 89. They fit the mold for middle income America and never had any more life insurance than they did when he died. I wouldn’t think of being in that kind of position at this point in my life, so what’s the difference.
Even though my Dad was a fireman, he had a pension provided by the city that was, well, to die for. If he had died prematurely my mother would have received his pension in full, equal to his salary at the time of death and guaranteed for her life. That kind of set up really takes the wind out of the sail for any life insurance need for income replacement. They never had much of a mortgage, but what they did have they paid down with gusto and if Dad had died while they still owed on a house, his pension would have provided plenty of money to make the payments and take any pressure off of Mom to work. She always had some kind of job after I was old enough to go to school, but she didn’t have to.
Things have changed so much. The kind of financial situation that my parents had is the rare luxury of higher income occupations now and isn’t exactly stock with most companies. For those of us who have taken the self employed road in life, life insurance is the replacement for the kind of security that big company, union and government jobs used to dole out.
My Dad lived to be 86, but if he had only lived to 56 the picture wouldn’t have changed for his bride. These days the only way most of us can provide that level of comfort and security is to make sure we have sufficient life insurance to get to the point where our assets take over that financial role. Retirement is another part of the picture that is changing rapidly. It used to be 60 and out, then 65. Now couples are making decisions to keep on working. I know for me that is a decision I made several years ago, not because we will have to but because I love what I do. Business is great and my customers appreciate the help. For my wife and I retirement will hopefully be more vacations, more exploring, but what it won’t be is a stop to our productive years.
So enough about my family. There are so many families out there that are still avoiding the discussion about the role life insurance could play in their lives. I know this has been a tough several years financially and a lot of people are probably looking at life insurance as just another expense. Looking back at LIMRA studies, about the same percentage of adults who say they should have had life insurance when the economy was robust, still don’t have life insurance. It isn’t about the payment. It isn’t because people don’t think there is a chance they could die prematurely. So what is it? Why don’t you have life insurance? Why is your family’s future just not a priority?
Bottom line. There is something very freeing about having life insurance in force. What is true for me has been echoed by so many of my clients. I am grateful that someone has my back if I don’t get to where my plan is aimed. I’m ecstatic that my wife’s future is guaranteed by my hard work and/or my life insurance. If you have any questions about why or just want to find out how to work life insurance into your financial picture, call or email me directly. My name is Ed Hinerman. Let’s talk.