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Permanent Life Insurance vs Term Life Insurance: Which is Better?

Regarding life insurance, there are two main types to consider: permanent and term. While both offer financial protection for your loved ones during your death, they differ regarding coverage length, cost, and flexibility. Read on to learn more about the differences between permanent and term life insurance and which one may best fit you.


Best Permanent life insurance policy

Deciding on the perfect life insurance according to your needs is difficult. If you plan to get life insurance coverage, you are torn between two options.

First is the permanent life insurance plan, like universal life, that can offer investment and security in a time of death. Another option is the Term life plan, which can provide coverage for a limited time but is inexpensive. 

With overwhelming options and information from various insurance carriers, you may question the possibility of getting a high investment return. It is good to gain some knowledge with the correct information to guide you to the best life insurance coverage.

Pros and cons of permanent life insurance

permanent life insurance pros and cons

Overwhelming experience is part of the process as you shop for your future life insurance that best suits your needs. There are only two options for you.

You can choose either a permanent life insurance plan or a term plan. Before you decide, you must find out how each option can help with your future financial needs and goals. Also, it is helpful to dig deeper into each policy to know what it can offer.

With Term plans, beneficiaries are secured in case of the insured’s untimely demise, but it will not accumulate any cash value and without any investment. You can only benefit from it if you pass away before the term expires.

If nothing happens within the period before it expires, you only get peace of mind that you are healthy and safe. 

Policyholders of term life plans can get a coverage limit of 10, 20, 30, and 40 years. However, as you age, the more expensive the monthly premiums you need to pay become. Overall, this is very affordable insurance, especially for younger ones.

For instance, a 30-year-old male non-smoking insured can get $200,000 in insurance coverage for 15 years with no medical examination as a requirement and pays less than $18 per month. 

Permanent life insurance policies or cash value policies can offer payout in case of the insured’s death and investment that incurs cash value over time.

Insurance agents can provide different policies like universal, whole life, or variable life insurance policy. All of these options offer an investment feature. Many financial experts prefer to use something other than permanent life insurance as an investment.

Advantages of permanent life insurance

One advantage of permanent life insurance is that it provides lifelong coverage, unlike term life insurance which only covers a specific period. Additionally, permanent life insurance policies build cash value over time, which can be borrowed against or used to pay premiums. This can be a valuable asset for those who need to access cash in the future. Permanent life insurance also offers level premiums, which means the premium stays the same throughout the policy’s life, providing predictable costs for the policyholder. Finally, permanent life insurance can be used as an estate planning tool, allowing policyholders to leave a tax-free inheritance to their beneficiaries.

Buy permanent life insurance

The decision to buy permanent insurance or term life insurance depends on your individual needs and financial goals. Permanent life insurance provides lifelong coverage and can also serve as an investment vehicle, while term life insurance provides coverage for a specific period. If you want a long-term investment and build cash value, permanent life insurance may be the better option.

However, if you want affordable coverage for a specific period, term life insurance may be the better choice. It’s essential to consult with a financial advisor to determine which type of life insurance is best for you.

Permanent life insurance premiums

Permanent life premiums are typically higher than term life insurance premiums because the policy provides lifelong coverage and builds cash value over time. The policyholder’s age, health, and lifestyle factors also affect the premiums. However, some permanent life insurance policies offer level premiums, which means the premium stays the same throughout the policy’s life. It’s essential to consider the long-term financial commitment of permanent life insurance before deciding.

How To Buy Life Insurance

3 Easy Steps

Step #1 Get a Free Quote

Step #2 Choose a Life Policy

Step#3 Fill out Application

What are the 4 types of permanent life insurance

types of permanent life insurance

There are four main types of permanent life insurance: whole life, universal life, variable life, and variable universal life. Whole life insurance provides a fixed premium and death benefit, while universal life insurance offers more flexibility in premium payments and death benefits. Variable life insurance allows policyholders to invest in a separate account for potential growth, while variable universal life insurance combines the features of both variable and universal life insurance.

Understanding the differences between these types of permanent life insurance is essential before choosing the right one for you.

1. No one wants to burden their family financially after death. If you belong to a group of people who earn enough for their living expenses with a bit of money to spend on life insurance, you better get one.

An affordable policy can cover final expenses once you pass away. This coverage is beneficial to cover burial expenses and other bills. 

Most of these plans are designed for older people so that you will get the necessary coverage. Most of these policies can only offer lower death benefits than a typical term life policy.

For instance, a 60-year-old with no health issue may pay 42 dollars as a monthly premium and will get 10,000 dollars for their coverage. 

2. Another individual needing life insurance is if a family member depends on them. Suppose someone depends on you for financial support, whether spouse, children or older parents; it is vital to safeguard them in case of your death.

Financial experts advise purchasing insurance coverage that can cover five to ten times your annual income in term life insurance. 

3. The third group of people who need to buy life insurance has a medical family history of dreaded diseases. An essential part of getting insurance coverage is disclosing your medical family history during the underwriting process.

It is good to apply for life insurance before experiencing similar ailments. If you have a family history of diseases like cancer, heart problems, or diabetes, it is good to buy coverage.

4. The last are those who own estates exceeding the federal estate tax threshold. If you are under this category, getting a permanent life insurance plan is helpful. This plan’s beauty is that it can reduce estate value, and you will get tax-free death benefits.

Is permanent life insurance worth it

is permanent life insurance worth itSetting aside all fees and commissions, it is true that permanent life insurance policies are advantageous to many people. If you think that you may not renew term life coverage in the future because of possible health conditions and other factors, it is good to get a permanent life insurance policy.

As its name implies, permanent life insurance policies are permanent, and once it is granted to you, an insurer will not be able to change any details within the policy. 

This policy is the best option if you want to include the predictability of long-term healthcare expenses. When infused with some care riders, the permanent life insurance policy has a beneficial tax advantage.

People who want to get Medicaid subsidies can opt for whole life coverage. Assets from this type of trust will not disqualify you from Medicaid eligibility. You can use it to transfer your wealth to heirs, with a steady income, and cover final expenses. 

If you are an investor with a very high net worth, you may also benefit from acquiring cash value insurance to avoid estate tax. If you are a couple with a net worth of 10 million dollars, then you need to pay 40 percent for every dollar for estate tax by the time you passed away.

A lot of your hard-earned money, while you are alive, will be used to pay for estate taxes, which is unfair for many. Many states have independent estate taxes. Although there are fees and expenses associated with acquiring cash, value savings is still something to consider. 

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Permanent life insurance as an investment

permanent life insurance investmentWith a permanent life insurance plan, the concept is investing a portion of your premium to a cash-value account, and it will grow through dividends that will increase its worth over time.
Permanent life insurance policies with sufficient cash value allow insureds to apply for a loan from their cash value. Like other loans, it will incur some interest paid through the account.

Your beneficiaries will get less than you expected in case of an outstanding loan, and your death benefit will also reduce. It can happen once you die and the policy does not reach maturity.

The only way to get funds is to borrow from your cash-value account. You may cancel the policy, but some termination fees are higher for less mature policies.

Permanent life insurance with cash value

permanent life insurance cash value

The cash value of a permanent life insurance policy is very beneficial for those who want to fund huge expenses like nursing home care or long-term care.

The high cash value can support several years of long-term care. This benefit is essential for those with a family medical history who may need long-term care.

Another benefit is to get cash value from your investment if you are experiencing financial challenges like the considerable estate tax, support to educational needs, financial aid to a child with special needs, or funding a new business venture.

However, if you have minimal funds to pay a high monthly premium for a permanent life insurance policy, choosing affordable options like term life insurance is better.

Get a life insurance policy according to your financial ability, lifestyle, and future needs. If a term policy is what you can afford today, you may also change it to permanent life insurance.

Frequently Asked Questions

How does permanent life insurance work?

Permanent life insurance is a type of life insurance that provides coverage for the insured's entire lifetime as long as premiums are paid. It also includes a savings component, known as cash value, which grows over time and can be borrowed against or used to pay dividends; unlike term life insurance, which only covers a set period, permanent life insurance is designed to provide lifelong protection and can be a valuable tool for estate planning and leaving a legacy.

Why is permanent life insurance bad?

Permanent life insurance can be expensive and may only be necessary for some. It also has a cash value component that may provide different returns than other investment options. Additionally, some people may not need life insurance coverage for their entire life, making term life insurance a more cost-effective option. However, permanent life insurance offers lifelong range and can be a good option for those who need it.

What is the difference between term and permanent life insurance?

Term life insurance provides coverage for a specific period, usually 10-30 years, and pays out a death benefit if the insured dies during that time. On the other hand, permanent life insurance provides coverage for the insured's entire life and includes a savings component that can accumulate cash value over time. Permanent life insurance is typically more expensive than term life insurance but offers more comprehensive coverage.

Meet the team

About Coach B.

After starting his financial career with Phoenix Home Life Insurance Company back in 1992, Scott decided he wanted to provide people with an easier and more enjoyable way to buy life insurance. That was the start of Coach B. Life Insurance, whose mission is to be transparent, honest, and helpful to customers — without ever bugging or pushing them.

In the years since then, he has worked tirelessly to improve the process of shopping for insurance. His goal is to make sure that everyone who comes to Coach B. — whether they end up buying a policy or not — has the best possible experience.

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