Primary Services

Mortgage Insurance

For most American families, the mortgage represents the largest source of personal debt, a debt that can easily default in the event of the primary breadwinner’s death.

What is Mortgage Protection Insurance?
Owning a home is the American dream. But, the reality of home ownership is that paying the mortgage can really strain the family budget. In fact, it often takes two incomes just to afford the monthly house payment. Many homeowners worry about leaving behind a huge debt in the event of their death, or risking foreclosure if they are unable to draw an income. Mortgage protection insurance can safeguard your family against this burden to ensure the house payment is covered, even if the unthinkable happens.

mortgage protectionWhy is Mortgage Protection Insurance so important?
You see a report on the evening news about a fatal car accident or a weather-related disaster. You hear about a friend or neighbor who unexpectedly lost a loved one. What if something like that happened to you? Would your family be prepared?

A time of mourning is no time to make major financial decisions or face the impending crisis of foreclosure. But, all too often, families are forced to put their home up for sale or risk losing it to the bank when the unexpected happens. Mortgage protection insurance can ease the financial burden on your family and ensure that they can make the next house payment, even in dire circumstances. If you are injured or stricken with a life-threatening illness, or if you die, you can leave behind a blessing to those you hold closest to your heart with a custom mortgage protection insurance plan.

Final Expense Insurance

Final Expense Insurance allows the family to feel secure knowing that the funeral and burial costs and arrangements are already taken care of should a loved one pass away.

What Is Final Expense Insurance?
Final expense insurance can save your loved ones a lot of money and stress at the time of your death. With the high cost of funerals, the last thing anyone wants to think about after they lose a loved one is paying for and planning final arrangements. Final expense insurance can help ease that burden by paying for many of the costs associated with funerals. In this article, you’ll learn how final expense insurance is different from traditional life insurance, who can buy it and how much you should buy.

final expenseFinal Expense Insurance vs. Life Insurance
Unlike the high face value most regular life insurance policies contain, final expense insurance is written with a much lower face value and is intended solely to take care of the cost of a person’s final arrangements. A regular life insurance policy ranges from $250,000 to $1,000,000, while a final expense policy is typically purchased for $5,000 to $50,000.

Who Can Buy It?
Anyone can buy final expense insurance. Most often, however, it is purchased by those who are near to death and do not already have a regular life insurance policy in place. Many final expense insurance policies can be underwritten without the designated insured submitting to a medical exam. These no-exam policies contain higher rates for the insurance, but are still less expensive to buy than regular life insurance because of the low face value of the policy.

How Much Should You Buy?
It’s a good idea to discuss with your loved ones, or whoever will be your policy’s beneficiary, your wishes for the type of funeral you would like to have. If you are helping someone else who is near death buy a final expense insurance policy, you may want to consult with a funeral home about the type of final arrangements you’d like to make for them. The funeral director should be able to give you an idea of the funeral’s cost including the funeral service, flowers, catering, a casket, a burial plot and headstone and any paid funeral procession arrangements such as police escorts. In general, funeral costs can range from $1,000 to $10,000 or more.

No one likes to think about what will happen after they are gone, but don’t forget about the people who will be left behind and will need to take care of your final arrangements. If you don’t already have a regular life insurance policy, buying a final expense insurance policy is a good alternative that will help your loved ones pay for your funeral costs. To get started, compare your options between final expense insurance and life insurance, decide if you’d like to submit to a medical exam or not and determine how much final expense insurance you should buy.

Life Insurance

Death is an emotional time for a family. In addition to bereavement, there is also the loss of income and the looming threat of unpaid bills.

What is Term Life Insurance?
Term life insurance is the cheapest, simplest type of life insurance. Term life insurance is temporary, meaning that a policy of term life insurance provides coverage for only a certain number of years. (You can choose 1, 5, 10, 15, 20… depending on the life insurance company.) Any life insurance policy that is not a term policy is permanent life insurance.

life insuranceHow Term Life Insurance Works
Term life insurance includes the attributes common to all life insurance policies.

A standard term life insurance policy guarantees fixed premiums. That means that the size of payments made to the life insurance company does not change over time. The policy owner makes payments, all of equal amount, at equal intervals of time (monthly, quarterly, semi-annually, or yearly, depending on the company and policy). The policy owner is free to discontinue payments at any time; if he/she does so, however, the policy will terminate (i.e. the life insurance company is no longer obliged to pay a death benefit).

A standard term life insurance policy guarantees a fixed death benefit. That means that the death benefit will be of a certain amount regardless of how long the policy has been in force. The insurance company will pay the same amount if the insured dies during the first day of coverage as if he/she dies during the 29th year of coverage.

Term life insurance policies provide temporary coverage. For example, a 20-year policy is intended to provide coverage for 20 years and no longer. However, there are exceptions to this temporary character.

At the End of the Term…
You might imagine that your life insurance is simply gone at the end of your term of coverage: if the insured is still alive, your beneficiary gets nothing. That’s not a bad thing; after all, a healthy, living person is preferable to a cash payment. However, there are usually alternatives to letting your coverage simply cease.

Most term life insurance policies simply don’t terminate after the “term of coverage.” You can keep paying premiums and keep enjoying coverage. However, after the specified term of coverage, the rates you pay are no longer fixed at the level they were. Your contract will probably stipulate new rates much, much higher than you were originally paying. This alternative may be worth the higher rates, however, if your insured is ill and not far from death. Continuing your “temporary” life insurance is typically allowed only until the insured attains a certain, advanced age (often 90 years old).

Another option is conversion. Conversion means that your life insurance company will replace an existing term life insurance policy with a permanent life insurance policy of the same face amount death benefit). Life insurance companies tend to offer at least one, but it may not be a desirable one. For instance, your only option may be to convert to a permanent policy whose rates are guaranteed for only a decade. Moreover, you may not be able to exercise the conversion option at just any time. For instance, conversion may only be allowed during the first five years of your term life coverage.

A final option is renewal, but this option is comparatively rarer than the preceding options. Renewable life insurance can be replaced with a life insurance policy of the same type, face amount, and health class. Renewing life insurance spares you the hazard of being assigned to a more expensive health class. However, life insurance rates trend downward so long as life expectancy trends upward, so unless the health of your insured has deteriorated, you may find better life insurance rates by starting the application process anew.

Who Should Get Term Life Insurance?
Term life insurance is not just for bread winners. It is commonly purchased for the following reasons:

  • Pay for child care
  • Fund higher education
  • Cover debts or liabilities (e.g. mortgage, funeral costs)
  • Fund a buy-sell agreement for a business
  • Protect against the loss of a key employee
  • Replace an income stream

If you have children at home, carry debts, or own a business, term life insurance may be a good (and inexpensive) asset to maintain.

Retirement Planning

Retirement income is no longer as certain as it once was.
It’s becoming increasingly important to have a sound financial plan in place.

Annuities Are Income for Life
Saving for retirement is one of the greatest financial challenges facing Americans today. Company pension plans are a thing of the past, Social Security faces a questionable future, and 401(k) and IRA plans have maximum contribution levels that could limit your savings. With an annuity, you can benefit from tax-deferred savings and ensure that you have a guaranteed income in retirement.

retirement planningHow Can an Annuity Help You?
Do you know how much money you will need in retirement? Have you considered what could happen if you outlive your retirement savings?

No matter how well you plan, factors like inflation, tax hikes and increased medical expenses can potentially eat away at your retirement savings, forcing you to suffer a lower quality of life or rely on your family for financial support in your golden years. An annuity can help you avoid a future dilemma and safeguard your financial security by providing you with guaranteed income throughout retirement. In fact, you can structure an annuity to pay you for the rest of your life, even if you live to be 100. You can also use annuities to transfer wealth to the next generation while avoiding probate.

The best part? There are no monthly premiums, and your annuity is guaranteed to never lose money. For a free annuity quote and personalized help with your retirement planning, simply fill out this form. Our highly trained annuity specialists are happy to explain the options available to you, and help you find the right annuity to fit your income needs.

Types of Annuities
Fixed
This annuity contract earns a stated interest rate (fixed interest rate) offered by the insurance company. Alternatively, the interest rate may be calculated in a manner specified in the annuity contract. No matter how the interest rate is calculated, the investor knows exactly what the future returns or income stream the annuity contract will produce because the applicable rates are set at the time of purchase and never change.

Simply stated, fixed annuities are guaranteed lifetime income. Those planning for retirement are facing difficult times after the sting of stock market losses, reduced or canceled dividend payouts, and financial market uncertainty affecting corporate and government bonds. A guaranteed lifetime income is a secure, guaranteed, and smart investment for your money.

Equity Index
This is an offshoot of a fixed annuity where the interest rate is based on an outside index such as a stock market index like the S&P 500 or the Dow Industrial Index. The annuity pays a base return rate, such as 3%, but the returns may be higher if the index returns greater than the base return rate.

An equity index annuity guarantees a minimum interest rate if held to the end of the surrender term and protects against a loss of principal. This is a smart choice for an annuity, and returns may be higher than fixed instruments such as CDs, money market accounts, and bonds. Equity Index Annuities are insured by the State Guarantee Fund which is similar to the insurance provided by the FDIC.

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