Now that the New Year's Eve champagne fog has cleared let's take a look at those resolutions. The most common New Year's resolutions are:

  1. Spend more time with friends and family
  2. Improve fitness
  3. Lose weight
  4. Quit smoking
  5. Enjoy life more

Let's tackle that last resolution - 'enjoy life more'. Perhaps you might enjoy life, just a little more, knowing that your loved ones would be taken care of, financially, no matter what happens. With this in mind and knowing that this time of year is popular for people purchasing life insurance, here are the top ten tips and points so you can easily get life insurance to help you achieve your resolution.

Top 10 life insurance shopping tips

  1. Who should buy life insurance?
    If you can answer yes to any of the following questions, then you should consider buying life insurance.

    • Does anyone rely on you for financial support? If so, life insurance will help to protect their financial well being.

    • Do you have a mortgage, car loan or any other outstanding debts? If so, a life insurance policy can provide a way to take care of these outstanding bills, along with any others like funeral expenses, legal fees, taxes, and medical expenses.

    • Do you own a business? If so, you are liable for the debts your business owes. Your personal assets could be liquidated to pay these debts, which could leave little left for your family. Plus, if you have a partner, life insurance could help them buy out your portion of the business.

    • Do you want to leave money to a charity? You can use life insurance to leave money to your favourite charity.

  2. Who you would like to insure?
    You can get a policy on your own life, for other members of your family, or a joint one for you and your spouse.

  3. What would you like your life insurance policy to achieve?
    Some of the things a life insurance policy can take care of include: pay funeral expenses, pay outstanding balances on your mortgage and other debts, offset the loss of your income for a period of time, and/or contribute to the future education of your children.

  4. How much life insurance do you need?
    Well that will depend on what you would like your life insurance to accomplish. As a result, there is no one-size fits all answer. However, tools like Kanetix's Term Life Insurance Calculator can help. Tools like these will help you find out roughly how much life insurance you'll need to have in order to ensure that your family, loved ones and your debts are looked after in the event of your death.

  5. How long will you need life insurance for?
    Again, this is often determined by what you would like your life insurance to achieve. You can estimate the timing of your life insurance needs by asking yourself questions like: When will my mortgage be paid off, when will my children be finished school, and when will I retire? Also, there are online tools like Kanetix's Term Life Insurance Analyzer that can offer guidance.

  6. What type of life insurance do you need?
    There are two kinds of life insurance: term and permanent. Term life insurance offers protection for a set period of time, usually 10 to 20 years; while permanent insurance provides a lifetime of protection. Term insurance is more affordable than permanent insurance, offering you an opportunity to get a large amount of coverage at a lower cost. Permanent life insurance on the other hand is more expensive than term, as it offers lifetime coverage along with possible savings and investment options. The good news is if you want a permanent-style policy without the savings or investment options, you can go for a Term to 100 policy which offers coverage until age 100.

  7. What medical information will you need to provide to obtain your policy?
    Typically, the more medical information you provide, the better the price. A life insurance policy that asks few or no medical questions will likely be far more expensive then a policy that asks for your medical information. Plus, depending on the insurer, your age, and the amount of coverage you want, you could be asked to provide blood or urine samples. For these, a nurse will visit, at no cost to you.

  8. What are the renewal options and requirements of the policy?
    Most term policies are renewable until you reach the age of 70 or 75. Questions to ask your broker: will I have to take a medical to renew, is the renewal premium guaranteed, and if not how much can I expect my rate to increase at the time of renewal?

  9. What are the conversion options and restrictions of the policy?
    As your life changes, you may want to convert your life insurance from term to permanent. When you purchase your policy, find out if there are any limitations for conversion, like age or into what type of permanent policy you can convert to - the fewer limitations the better.

  10. What will the cost be?
    Well that depends on the individual. The best way to get the cheapest rate is to shop around. Thanks to the Internet, it is fast, free and easy to go to life insurance shopping comparison websites like, to compare rates. By shopping online, you are sure to find the best deal on life insurance from the major carriers. Click here to get started - shop for life insurance.

Here's to an enjoyable life to you and your loved ones in 2011!

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