A free life insurance quote doesn’t always yield the golden guidance you hoped for. Many quote forms leave users to their own devices with unfamiliar industry terms, resulting in erroneous estimates. Worse yet, some quote forms don’t even give you an actual quote at the end!
Before you spend your valuable time filling out an online form for a free life insurance quote, read this guide from JRC Insurance Group, an independent agency with 50+ years of combined experience helping clients turn online life insurance quotes into real-life policies.
Trust us, you will save yourself hours of hassle and heartache by learning the basics of life insurance and understanding what to expect from a free quote prior to entering your information.
Quick Article Guide
Not all life insurance quote forms are built thoughtfully and backed by reputable industry experts. Here are common roadblocks people come to while trying to get an online quote:
Not Knowing Your Rate Class
Most quote engines ask you to select your “rate class,” which is what insurers use to determine their risk and your rates based on your health standing. Unless you’ve had a life insurance agent explain to you how rate classes work, you likely don’t know where you stand in the eyes of insurers. Naturally, choosing the wrong rate class will give you the wrong rates.
Not Seeing All of Your Options
A quote engine or quote form is only as effective as the companies loaded into it. When you submit your information through a big insurance company’s website, you will only receive quotes for that company’s products. There are dozens of highly-rated but lesser known insurers out there offering lower rates.
Most of these companies also cater to people with certain health issues who are typically declined by big-box insurers that primarily sell home and auto insurance.
Having Too Many Options
Walk down the toothpaste aisle in your local grocery store, and you’ll see an example of having way too many options. They all tout similar benefits and eventually all begin to look the same. Life insurance quotes can have a similar effect when a quote engine spits out a long list of products that you don’t fully understand. Oftentimes, this is the part where customers walk away from the computer feeling completely overwhelmed.
Choosing the Wrong Product
There are many different types of life insurance, from no-frills policies lasting a set amount of years to lifelong coverage with a “cash accumulation” investment. Most clients aren’t fully certain about what exactly they’re looking for. Unfortunately, this isn’t the type of thing where you just click an option that sounds right—different policies can have dramatic differences in cost and coverage.
A Pushy Agent
Perhaps the worst thing we see with other companies’ quote forms or quote engines is that they aren’t designed to provide true value. Instead, they are lead generators for commissioned-based agents to call you and add you to their mailing list.
We’re not saying that an agent shouldn’t call you after you submit your information for a quote; you want that type of responsiveness. However, you also want to move the process forward and have that agent help you with the next step rather than rehashing the step you’ve just completed.
Double the Work
Our previous point goes hand-in-hand with this one. You shouldn’t have to fill out an online quote form only for an agent to call you and ask you the exact same questions all over again.
You can avoid many of the issues above by doing a little bit of homework before seeking a quote. We offer a world of ongoing information right here on our blog, much of it tying back to a few common themes, such as:
Term Life Insurance vs. Whole Life Insurance
The two main types of life insurance are term life and whole life.
Term life insurance provides a death benefit (money paid to your spouse or heirs to cover income loss and assets in the event of your untimely death) at a fixed premium, for a set period of time (your term), with annual renewable terms. Terms are generally available in 5-year increments ranging from 10 to 30 years, after which the policy will usually become renewable on an annual basis.
Whole life insurance provides lifetime protection at fixed periodic premiums and may build a cash value in addition to your death benefit. If you have ever shopped for life insurance and felt that it was too complicated, there’s a good chance you were looking at whole life insurance. There are various types of coverage within whole life insurance, from indexed universal life policies with performance tied closely to stock market indexes to variable universal life policies, which are actually invested in the stock market.
The key differences between term life and whole life are:
- Term life expires; whole life lasts for your lifetime.
- Term life is generally more affordable.
- Whole life is complex and, at times, can be a risky investment.
- Whole life is often used as a tax shelter for the ultra-affluent.
- Whole life premiums can increase as you age; term life rates are locked for your term.
Need something more visual to fully grasp these differences. Check out our term life vs. whole life infographic.
Beware of Non-Guaranteed Policies
If you come across any universal life insurance policy that is “non-guaranteed,” be sure to fully vet the policy before making a final decision. Non-guaranteed life insurance is a frequent root of horror stories because people don’t realize that their life insurance is tied to an investment with market risk. Learn more about the difference between non-guaranteed and guaranteed universal life insurance here.
How Much Coverage Do You Need and for How Long?
These are the two pivotal questions when shopping for life insurance. You don’t need to calculate a down-to-the-dime figure, but a ballpark estimate will go a long way toward expediting the process of finding a policy that’s right for you. Many people buy life insurance for income replacement, while others use it as a means of leaving a legacy. Life insurance can also be a helpful tool in estate planning.
What are Rate Classes?
When you apply for coverage, insurance companies will place you into one of 16 possible rate classes based on your overall health. The top class can be called many things depending on the carrier, “Preferred Plus”, “Preferred Best” and “Super Preferred” are the most common.
Most agents just say “best class, which means you are considered to be in excellent health and of low risk to the insurer. The next classes down the chain are Preferred (still excellent), Standard Plus or Select (good, perhaps with a health issue that is being controlled) and Standard (average life expectancy), and so on. The higher your rate class, the more competitive your rates will be. If you use tobacco, you’ll the two options you’ll see in most quote forms are ‘Preferred Tobacco” and “Standard Tobacco.”
Health Class – Most life insurance companies have 16 possible rate categories. Our online engine is capable of quoting the top four rate classes for nonsmokers and top two rate classes for smokers. The underwriter determines what final approved rate class an applicant qualifies for based on their health and lifestyle. Not all insurance companies underwrite health and lifestyle risks the same way.
Term Life Insurance – Offers a level death benefit and level premiums for a specific duration. Most carriers offer 10, 15, 20, 25, and 30 year durations. Not all durations are available for all ages.
Return-of-Premium – A level term life insurance policy (available on 15, 20, 25 and 30 year term life options) that refunds all premiums paid if the insured is still alive when term policy expires. Not all durations are available for all ages. For example, the latest age to buy a 15-year return-of-premium is 65.
Guaranteed Universal Life (GUL) – A permanent policy with no cash value that works very similar to term life insurance. But instead of the policy lasting for a specific duration, it lasts until a defined age. GUL offers level cost and coverage until a specific birthday. Common examples are until age 90, 95, 100, 105, 110, 115, and 120.
To Age 95 Level – A guaranteed universal life insurance policy with level premiums and death benefit until age 95.
To Age 121 Level – A guaranteed universal life insurance policy with level premiums and death benefit until age 121.
10-Pay – A payment option on a permanent life insurance policy only requiring payments for 10 years for the policy to be paid in full. After that, no further premiums are needed for the policy to remain inforce.
Single-Pay (or Single Premium) – A payment option on a permanent life insurance policy where the insured pays one single lump-sum premium large enough to keep their policy in force for their lifetime, without any future payments required.
The purpose of an online life insurance quote is to help you take the first step in securing the coverage you need to protect your family. As an independent agency, JRC provides a robust yet user-friendly quote engine designed to lay the foundation for a short introductory conversation with one of our friendly and knowledgeable agents. Everything is fully transparent, so you see exactly what we see on our end.
JRC is founded on principles of integrity and client care, with no sales quotas and no charge to you for our services. Click the button below to get a free life insurance quote online from JRC, or call us at 855-247-9555, and we’ll be happy to walk you through the quoting process.
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