Let's Talk Life Insurance

By: David Smyth, September 20, 2019

When I say "life insurance," what's the first thing that comes to mind? For some, it's "death." And I get that. For others, it might be "more money out of my budget." And I get that too! Perhaps for yet another group, "life insurance" actually translates into "freedom."

Now, you might be thinking....what?? But, many people buy life insurance for one of two reasons. Either they buy it out of guilt because someone like me told them that they need to take care of their family even though they're positively never going to die (I don't argue with them), but they really think it's a waste of money. Or, they realize that now that they do have a significant other they love and couple little ones running around, they do need more protection than they're getting at work. For these folks, it's not that they have to buy life insurance. They want to.

In the not-so-distant past, a life insurance agent was viewed as a positive career choice because they were helping protect families against the unforeseeable. But somewhere in the last couple of decades, insurance has come to be viewed as a commodity that anyone can get, and in some ways I agree. But what hasn't changed is the need for professional advice, and that's where much of the public is wrong in how they view insurance agents. Why? Well, if the general public could proactively plan for the correct amount of insurance, we wouldn't need agents. But most families are underinsured to maintain quality of life should something happen to either parent.

So, when I'm talking to clients about life insurance, I can tell you that all of us - client, prospective client and advisor - need to make the topic of insurance overall a centerpiece in our financial conversations. Due to my profession, I am reminded of the need to talk about life insurance and am more inclined to talk about people's insurance coverage simply because of what I do. But, we've had eight funerals this year among our client families, and that's not atypical - more clients means more funerals. And, at every single one, I ask myself: did we at Family Financial Partners do everything we could have done to put that family in the best financial place possible knowing what we knew? And I believe in my heart of hearts that yes, we have. If you're in a profession where you have to do this, it's gut-wrenching, but also a point of pride that you're giving your best with each and every family.

That said, if you don't think you're carrying enough coverage and you need a review, just call our office and let us make sure you're ok. We also just wrapped up wedding season. Do you know someone who recently got married, or had a baby and now needs to protect that new swaddled financial obligation? By all means, pass our name along and encourage them to call us so we can make sure they're protected too. You never know when mayhem will strike - just watch the nightly news! The only way to ward off that mayhem is to be prepared and make sure your insurance needs are squared away.

At the end of the day, do all of you need more insurance? Based on that article linked above, probably. If you come into my office, will I automatically tell you that you need more insurance? No. We'll take the time to look through everything and ask what you want and look at how you're set up financially. If there's a shortfall that could potentially be made up with less than $100 per month, well, I can't see why we wouldn't review those options.

As we go through the rest of Life Insurance Awareness Month, think of your four or five closest relatives and friends, and let's make sure everyone is covered, so we never have to say, "We wish we'd had that conversation before [fill in the blank] happened."

Family Financial Partners | Growing Wealth, For Generations ™