by guest writer Erin Ardleigh, President, Dynama Insurance.
Erin is the founder and president of Dynama Insurance. She has worked in the insurance industry since 2002 and founded Dynama Insurance in 2014. Her vision is to make the insurance planning process more transparent and more accessible for her clients.
Erin has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Communication and Culture from the City University of New York.
With a new year comes a new to-do list. If purchasing life, disability or long term care insurance is one of your resolutions for 2019, we can help! Here are our five tips to ensure that you (and your clients) are finding the best possible options and prices.
1. Work with an independent insurance broker. A broker that represents multiple insurance companies has loyalty to you and can help you compare different insurance companies’ products. An agent that works for one particular company has loyalty to their employer and is expected to give preference to that company’s products. Don’t go online or try to contact individual companies – a good broker will know which companies to approach and that will save you time and energy.
2. Always ask to see at least two products. For example, when buying term life insurance, compare 20 year term and 30 year term quotes. When buying permanent insurance, compare at least two of the four types (whole life, universal life, indexed life and variable life). Ask to see how traditional long term care coverage compares to a new "hybrid" policy. Each product has strengths and weaknesses – make sure you understand the differences.
3. Get quotes from at least three different insurance companies. Prices vary significantly. For example, in New York the price of term insurance can be double the price from one company to the next. Some disability policies give discounts to business owners or have additional benefits that you can add on. No one company is the best!
4. Work with a team. Engage the help of your estate planning attorney, wealth advisor and accountant. They can help you determine your budget, whether or not you need a life insurance trust, and how state and federal estate taxes are likely to affect you.
5. Don't forget to review your existing insurance every year or two, or when you experience a life-changing event. Your family, finances and goals will change over time, and so will your life insurance needs. Insurance products change, too, so it's good to make sure you still have the best in class.