Who Do You Love?

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Buying a mattress and buying life insurance – Are they the same?

When entering a mattress store to purchase a mattress, most people possess little knowledge about the differences between the hundreds of mattresses – your guard is up because you’re about to be “sold.” You begin your analysis with the help of your “sales advisor,” and common sense tells you the more expensive, the better, but you’re not really sure if that’s true. You walk the store, flop onto several beds, and hear the nuances and benefits of each mattress. Some names sound familiar. You listen, hear about the features, and ultimately settle on a bed. Frame and box spring delivery are thrown in. (You’re killing me, Larry!)
This isn’t too dissimilar from the way that most will buy life insurance: relying on the guidance of an advisor, knowing some basic terms and possessing a limited understanding of how the products actually work. Ultimately making a purchasing decision, without the ability to really look “under the hood.”
The striking difference between buying a mattresses and buying life insurance is that it takes only one night on a mattress to determine if you made a good or bad decision. For a life insurance policy, it might be 15 to 20 years before you realize and discover what was sold as “quality” may be strikingly different.
Unlike the mattress, the life insurance policy requires annual maintenance and monitoring and comes with a host of contractual rights, opportunities, and options that were appropriate only if you had someone actively managing it for you.
Both purchases preclude buyers’ knowing what’s really ”under the hood” and yet the stakes of buying a life insurance policy are so much higher, because of the changes that occur after the policy is issued.
When left unmonitored, a life insurance policy can truly crumble, or worse, lapse at exactly the time it is needed.
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