How is term life insurance different from whole life insurance?

Right now, we only do term life insurance here at Wysh, not whole, but I'd love to explain why term insurance is a good option for most people! Term life insurance insures your life for a certain "term" (usually between one to thirty years). If you die during that time, your beneficiaries get paid a certain amount of money (aka a death benefit).

A typical shopper might choose a term length that will cover them through retirement, for example a 35 year old chooses a 30 year term to cover them up to age 65 so their family is covered during their income earning years.

You might choose this term length and a coverage amount that covers a good portion of your income and mortgage so those that depend on you (children, spouse, parents) will not suffer financially if you pass away unexpectedly. The idea behind term life is that you may no longer need life insurance coverage after retirement because you will have retirement savings and assets and your dependents will be all grown up.

Whole life insurance, on the other hand, is a type of permanent life insurance that covers you for life, regardless of age. That means you’re covered from the moment your policy starts until you pass away (as long as you keep your payments up, of course). You pay a fixed amount, either monthly or yearly, and in return, your loved ones get a fixed amount of money when you die.

A whole life insurance policy also builds a cash value that you can take advantage of during your lifetime. Over time, you can access your cash value, through policy loans and/or withdrawals, which you can use for various things like medical costs or your kid’s college tuition or that alpaca farm you've always dreamed of. However, any unpaid loans or withdrawals will reduce the policy's death benefit.

You can learn more about whole life insurance via our Your go-to guide to whole life insurance blog post.

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