How To Buy A Life Policy

Feb 18, 2007

  1. Guest
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    Guest Guest

    Okay, folks, you might think this is a very dumb question, but here goes:

    How would one buy a life insurance policy if they did not really know what is available. To explain what I mean, let me compare it to buying a car.

    When someone starts shopping for a car, they already have a general idea of what they want. They want a pick-up, a sedan, a big family car like a mini-van or station wagon, an SUV. Alright their next step might be to look at prices in the newspaper to see what they can afford. Lastly they may go to a showroom just to pick up brochures. In any event, the point I am making is: a) they have an idea, b) they do a bit of research, and c) they go in to a dealer to buy.

    When buying LI, how would one approach this. Some poor agent does not want to spend a ton of time educating someone on all the policies and riders out there.

    Yet, one goes to the LI websites, all the policies are described only in general terms. You do not really know the nuts and bolts of how to get a loan or how interest is computed. Their DI rider is only spoken about in the vaguest of terms, "if you are disabbled as defined in the rider. . . "

    I did a google search on LI riders. There were just so many. Far more than are discussed on this board.

    (1) So how do you start preliminary research so you are conversant with the producer. (2) Once you meet the producer, what do you tell him.

    Given the variety of policies out there, do you have to narrow it down for the agent telling him you are mostly interested in the DB, in the CV, in deferring taxes, in tax free loans ? Let's face it, LI is about alot of things, and the DB is almost an incidental feature, at least for some insureds.

    Thanks
     
    Guest, Feb 18, 2007
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  2. somarco
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    somarco That Medicare Guy

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    You're right. I don't have the time, patience or desire to educate someone on the intricacies of life insurance. Then have them go online, searching for the cheapest policy they can find and cut me out. Just as bad, they decide on a term policy with a $20/month premium since that is all they can afford and I have to wait 4 months to get paid.

    Or, I could just say "what do you want" and take their order.

    Option B is my choice.
     
    somarco, Feb 18, 2007
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  3. Airborne1
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    Airborne1 Expert

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    Why not ask the agent the same questions as you would for any other financial product, and that excludes disability and health insurance ?


    If I had to ballpark it, slightly more than half of my lead sources are uncertain what type of life insurance their looking for.

    That gives me an opportunity to excel, and I give a term vs. WL vs. UL vs. VUL vs. EIUL powerpoint presentation (hardcopy, not projector).

    Before I do an in-person presentation, I try to get a good feel for what range of affordability they are comfortable with, and I don't rule out asking them how cost efficient their qualified plans are.

    If I meet with someone in person, I usually bring 3 options: Term, Term with ROP, and a permanent policy.

    I never recommend WL, and I no longer recommend VUL, because it requires too much management by the consumer and the agent. Their are plenty of lawsuits still in the works by consumers who had amnesia from the last recession and play the blame game if they had an outstanding loan.

    The bottome line -

    If you are at all considering a permanent policy, you need to look at the same factors as you do for investments. 99% of the agents out there do NOT do this.

    Always start with A NO LAPSE GUARANTEE TO AGE 100, and it better not cost you a lot if anything at all to get that guarantee.

    Truth is, even though you bought a VUL for your children, you need to treat it the same as your investments because it's your money.

    Life insurance is the only financial product that's guaranteed to return to your beneficiaries more than what you put in today, but also gives you the greatest liklehood of a pile of cash down the road when you don't need LI, or both.
     
  4. James
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    James Guru

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    http://www.secinfo.com/d1zJxf.u13.c.htm

    I would like to know what companies are offering that SG to 100 at no cost or little cost.
     
    James, Feb 19, 2007
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  5. Bob_The_Insurance_Guy
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    Bob_The_Insurance_Guy Guru

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    If they are "shopping", I don't go anywhere near them. I agree with Somarco. Why should I be the one to educate them, so that they can go online and get it through someone else?

    I don't waste time with "tire kickers".

    There is also no need to even discuss all the riders out there, since 99% of them will have absolutely nothing to do with your client/prospect. By drilling down and finding out why they want it, who they want it for, and for how long they wish to hold on to it, you are better able to assist them.

    You may also be better served finding out what other "investments" or "financial" obligations they have, to get a clearer picture of liquidity and future growth. Alot goes into it. Don't fall into the trap of being a "quote machine" for your clients or prospects.

    If all they want is a number, then send them to the internet and move on.

    You don't refer a someone to a physician, and say, "He/She's the cheapest." No. You say, "He/She's the best." We are our own worst enemy, ladies and gents. Buying Life Insurance is NOT like buying a car. Buying a car is a selfish act - you want to be seen in a sleek, cool, fully featured automobile. Buying Life Insurance is an unselfish act - you want to make sure that your family has as little to worry about as possible, in a very traumatic time in their lives.

    Ask any widow/widower if they are glad that their spouse got the cheapest policy? Or if they are glad they got a policy that was sufficient for their needs?

    But, as an industry, we keep sending out postcards with the words "CHEAPEST RATES IN TOWN" on it, and are surprised that the buying public has become price shoppers.

    Look at the Cellular industry. They don't chat about being the cheapest. The concentrate on who can provide you the most minutes, the coolest download ringtones, the best internet graphics. They know if they can list all those "value added" options, then price becomes secondary. In other words, they find out how to be the "best" provider for your needs.

    That should be our line of thinking.

    Do you think if you go to one cell phone provider, and tell them that their competition is cheaper, they will try to cut their price? NO. They will list all that they offer, and justify that with their cost. You, at that point, will either make the decision based on how much you want to write the check for each month, or on the services you receive.

    Also keep this in mind. The client/prospect who does not want to share information with you, and who makes you do all the work, will probably not be a client for long, and/or will not have any respect for you, or what you do. This does not mean you shouldn't service the client. It means that, if you are trying to get basic information from them, and they are not cooperating, chances are they've got something to hide.

    I happen to like people who do research on the topic. However, I won't work with someone who will "Analyze to Paralyze".

    I sat down with a couple last year, and, at our first meeting, the wife had a 52-page spreadsheet with DB's APR's, and COLA's. Needless to say, this didn't work out very well for her. She was too focused on her spreadsheet, than on finding the best product for her needs (which, by the way, she would never articulate to me). To this day, she is still "thinking about it", which is fine with me. I've moved on.

    The funny thing is, she wants me to help her with LTC. Anybody want to guess what my response to her was, and how much time I've spent on it?
     
  6. Steve
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    Steve Super Genius

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    Excellent post Bob. I appreciated reading it. Good direction.
     
    Steve, Feb 20, 2007
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  7. James
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    James Guru

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    I thought about this nine ways to sunday today and have come to the conclusion that the old saying is true, "People don't buy Life Insurance".
     
    James, Feb 20, 2007
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  8. Steve
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    Steve Super Genius

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    James -- My brain must be tired today. What does that mean? My old brain is missing the old saying...
     
    Steve, Feb 20, 2007
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  9. James
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    James Guru

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    Well it means that people in general don't go out and actively buy insurance like say a car. Most buy insurance after we present them with sales presentation, so if the question is "How to sell" I understand but the question is "How to buy" really confused me because people such as myself before I got into insurance don't go out and actively seek to buy insurance.

    Or to put it simply, Insurance is not a Commodity, and can not be sold like a Commodity no matter who says so.
     
    James, Feb 20, 2007
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  10. Steve
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    Steve Super Genius

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    Thank you James.
     
    Steve, Feb 20, 2007
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