Many retirees have reached the point of financial security and might not consider life insurance important. Others might feel they don’t qualify or can’t afford the premiums. There’s also a misconception that life insurance is only for people with young families, dependents or those with significant debts.
While some people may certainly be more likely to see the need for life insurance than others, there are still many benefits of life insurance for retirees.
What are the benefits of life insurance for retirees?
Everyone’s financial situation is different, but life insurance has several valuable features that can benefit retirees. It’s important to remember that life insurance isn’t for you, the insured, it’s for your beneficiaries. Those handling your estate after you pass away may have to pay for funeral expenses, debts and taxes. Your partner or children could find themselves without enough income to cover those costs, especially if they depend on you financially.
Cover final expenses
Funerals, or celebrations of life, can be expensive. Costs will vary depending on the services provided, but the average cost of a funeral in the United States last year was almost $8,000.
Going through a funeral and burial of a family member or close friend is difficult enough without worrying about how you’re going to pay for it all. Having life insurance to cover those expenses can relieve the financial burden on your loved ones and allow them space to grieve.
Pay off outstanding debt
Approximately 20% of retirees still carry a mortgage, and about 67% carry credit card debt into retirement. Some may sell their home, downsize and use the remaining funds to supplement their other sources of income; others might get a reverse mortgage or home equity line of credit on their home.
Viewing life insurance as a financial tool is a great way to help lower your stress and help you feel more prepared going into retirement and your future. If you pass away, any debt you have will still need to be paid. However, proceeds from a life insurance policy could help your loved ones pay any outstanding debts or bills you may have had.
Provide financial support
If you have a partner, they may not get the same pension income you received before you passed away. Some pensions provide a reduced percentage for a surviving partner, and some only provide pension funds for a specified time. If you pass away, it could result in a reduction in your partner’s income. You may also have dependent children or others in your life who need financial support. Life insurance can provide a source of income replacement for those dependent on you and help them maintain their lifestyle.
Support a charitable cause
If giving back and contributing to something larger than yourself is important to you, life insurance can be a great way to do that. Many people are passionate about a cause or charity. Did you know that life insurance proceeds can provide a generous donation to an organization of your choosing? You can also use the death benefit to create an ongoing legacy, such as a scholarship.
Provide a tax-free benefit
Life insurance proceeds are typically tax-free. Other parts of your estate may be subject to taxes, reducing the amount of money available for your beneficiaries. A life insurance policy can help cover the taxes owed, so your beneficiaries receive their entire inheritance.
Deciding if you need life insurance
When considering life insurance, there are two main things to review: how much you need and what it will cost. Using a life insurance calculator can help you determine the amount of life insurance coverage that’s right for your family. Once you have completed the calculator, you should compare life insurance policies to ensure you get what best suits your needs. A qualified insurance professional can help you get started.
Peace of mind is among the many benefits a life insurance policy can offer retirees. Insurance proceeds can provide ongoing income to your beneficiaries, cover funeral expenses, pay debts and help you leave a legacy. A life insurance policy can be a great way to ensure your loved ones are taken care of when you pass away.