This is a question I am often asked. If you think you’ll get an answer by reading this blog, forget it! There is no answer. With that said, I will give the names of some insurance companies who are known to me to be ones that you may want to use as benchmarks.
The reason there is no answer is because the question is so broad. A company very competitive in Term Insurance may have not-so-good Universal Life premiums. The company with a great Second-to-Die Universal Life policy may not be as competitive with single life policies. One company may have the best 10 year term, but another will be better at 20 year term. Add to this the underwriting variations—who issues their best premium to a person controlling high blood pressure with medication when another company will not—and you can see why there is no simple answer to this question.
With this said, if you are dealing with an agent who tells you their premiums are the best, but has given you no alternative premiums, you may want to ask them for a comparison. A few agents may not be allowed to sell policies other than those issued by their principal company. In these instances you might want to ask another agent to look at the following companies that would be good benchmarks for competitive premiums:
- TERM: Banner Life, Protective Life, Transamerica, American General, Met Life, ING ReliaStar, Genworth.
- LIFE TIME GUARANTEED UNIVERSAL LIFE: American General, Banner Life, Protective Life, North American Company for Life and Health, Prudential, United of Omaha.
- INDEXED UNIVERSAL LIFE: Prudential, American General, Nationwide.
- SECOND-TO-DIE UNIVERSAL LIFE: Prudential, United of Omaha, John Hancock, American General, Protective Life.
This is not an all-encompassing list and the policies are not available in all states. If you are purchasing a policy in the state of New York the policy may be issued by a different company in order to comply with state regulations. The age and physical condition of the applicant will be important and might affect the competitiveness of a company’s policy available to any given individual. It is only intended as a point of reference to see how the policy being proposed stacks up.
If you are working with an insurance agent who represents multiple insurance companies to meet your needs rather than a single company with whom he maintains an exclusive contract, then that agent should know what companies will best meet your needs and you won’t need to be concerned with whether or not you are getting a good deal.
Coming up, I’ll return to some health histories that can produce challenges to getting affordable life insurance premiums.