Smart Life Insurance Strategies for Young Buyers

Close-up shot of unrecognizable young family sitting at cafe table and reading life insurance brochure, blurred background

The decisions you make when you buy life insurance in your twenties or thirties can help you avoid scrambling to find coverage before your term policy expires.

What to Do When Your Term Life Insurance Is Expiring
You could buy a permanent life insurance policy and never worry about the coverage expiring. But the premiums are much higher than the premiums for term insurance, and young families who start out with permanent insurance frequently buy too little coverage because that’s all they can afford.

“What we really need to focus on with younger families is the death benefit amount,” says Tim Maurer, director of adviser development for the BAM Alliance, a network of independent financial advisers. A 30-year term policy is also an option, but those premiums can be pricey, too.

A more cost-effective way to extend the coverage is to layer policies, says Maurer. Buy a 20-year term policy for the bulk of your coverage. That allows you to get a death benefit large enough to protect your family while your kids are at home and you’re making mortgage payments. “You want to have all of those years covered, but you might not need that much coverage for the whole time,” Mauer says. If you’d like coverage that lasts longer, you could also get a 30-year term with a smaller death benefit.