Term insurance is that life insurance policy that provides coverage for a limited time, or a specified term of years. When the period or term is over, the premium increases significantly, and this makes the policy cost prohibitive. Term insurance is the least expensive type of life insurance and has no cash value. The insured gets a death benefit once he/she dies within the time period or the term. If the insured dies outside the term, for instance a day after the expiry of the term, the death benefit is not paid. There are three types of term life insurance policies namely; decreasing term insurance, guaranteed renewable term insurance and convertible term insurance. In guaranteed renewable, it covers a term from one to five years where the premiums are kept constant within the term, but increases upon each renewal. For the decreasing insurance, a low fixed premium is paid but the coverage decreases annually. According to Kaplan (2004), convertible term insurance allows one to convert the term insurance to another form of insurance except that which results into cash value. Whole life insurance is that insurance that provides entire life coverage with a level premium and cash value for the specified coverage. The advantages of this policy is that there is guaranteed life benefits, fixed and known annual premiums, and guaranteed cash value.
Whole life insurance policy requires a larger premium than term insurance due to costs incurred in it. These include the transaction cost to pay for the cost of the death, benefit and the charges converged to the insurance company, and the agent if the policy was withdrawn before a specific time expires. Still, the sales commission charges are higher than those of the term insurance policy. The savings account in the whole life policy may be invested in loans. This increases the premium due to the expected rate of return. Lack of taxation of gains result to a higher premium requirement (cash value) if the policy proceeds until death. In a family, various circumstances will lead to a whole life or term insurance policy to be purchased (Garrett & Swift, 2004). For instance, when one is getting married one will need a term insurance policy. Starting a family may create need for life insurance policy. When a family is purchasing a mortgage, it becomes necessary to purchase the term and whole life insurance policy. A disease or ailment by one of the members may be appropriate for the family to purchase these insurance policies. Moreover, old age and greater chances of retirement will need the insurance policy.
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