Burial Insurance in Georgia

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Buyer’s Guide: Burial Insurance in Georgia

Burial insurance (also called final expense life insurance) is a small life insurance policy, usually less than $40,000, that’s meant to cover funeral costs, medical costs, and any debts left behind.

These plans are designed for seniors on a fixed income who want to protect their families from having to pay their end-of-life expenses, which typically exceed $20,000.

These policies are “permanent” or “whole life,” which means the plan will never expire and premiums (the cost) won’t change. Most people can be accepted, even with medical issues.

Another design feature of these plans: no medical exam requirement. Instead, you just answer a few health questions. This allows you to apply for coverage and get it in place almost immediately. The application process usually takes no more than 30 minutes.

How much does final expense life insurance cost?

Final expense plans usually cost anywhere from $80 to $120 per month. That’s for coverage anywhere from $10,000 to $35,000 or so. Some folks pay more than that, some pay less. It all depends on health, age, gender, and location.

The 3 types of burial insurance plans

  1. Level:
    • You’re covered for the full death benefit on day 1 of coverage.
    • If you’re in reasonably good health you should qualify.
    • If you have a few health issues, you might qualify for a level plan but at a slightly higher premium.
  2. Graded:
    • You’re covered on day 1, but you won’t get the full coverage amount until you have the policy for 2-3 years.
    • In the first 2-3 years, your coverage is either
      • A percentage of the full death benefit; or,
      • A refund of all the premiums you paid plus an interest rate of about 10%.
    • Health requirements are fairly lenient with a graded plan.
  3. Guaranteed Acceptance:
    • This is a type of graded benefit plan.
    • There are no health questions to ask.
    • The tradeoff? You’ll pay a higher premium, and the benefit for 2-3 years will most likely be a return of premium.

What most people get wrong when buying a burial insurance plan

Most folks have it backwards. They try to find a plan based on how much coverage they can get for the lowest price.

While that seems logical, here’s where it breaks down. They’ll find a rate they like, try to apply for that plan, then realize they aren’t getting what they bargained for. Either their health disqualifies them for the favorable rate they saw, coverage isn’t immediate, or there’s a key policy feature missing.

The quote they had their mind set on was never their quote in the first place.

As tempting as it is to make this all about monthly rates and buying the cheapest option, there’s a smarter way to go about getting coverage.

After all, the goal here is to make it a sure thing that your family gets the money they’re counting on, right?

What to prioritize when buying a final expense plan

Instead of starting with comparing quotes, we advise our clients to shop for a plan in this order:

  • Step 1: Find the companies that will offer you an immediate (level) death benefit based on your health.
  • Step 2: Among those companies, which will offer you the amount of coverage you need? You may only qualify for up to $25,000 with one company, but another might offer up to $35,000.
  • Step 3: Which of the remaining companies offer the policy features you want? Examples: funeral concierge services, accidental death benefits, and waiver of premium.
  • Step 4: Now you can compare quotes (the quotes for you, and you alone) among the companies still in contention.

Our top picks for final expense life insurance companies

There are dozens (and dozens!) of life insurance companies out there. We prefer to focus on the handful of companies that we think are best in class. The company we recommend for you will depend on your health, your budget, and the available extra benefits you do (or don’t) care about.

Aetna

  • In business since: 1853
  • Best for: Most applicants.
  • Pros: Competitive rates, will offer immediate coverage for some high-risk health conditions like COPD.
  • Cons: Accidental death coverage will cost a few dollars more per month.

SBLI

  • In business since: 1906
  • Best for: If you want immediate coverage but have some health issues that might disqualify you with other companies.
  • Pros: Comes with Sequoia Funeral Concierge at no extra cost, simple application process.
  • Cons: Rates are slightly higher than the competition.

Mutual of Omaha

  • In business since: 1909
  • Best for: If you want a no-frills policy from a reputable company at a low rate.
  • Pros: Usually among the lowest prices on the market
  • Cons: You may not qualify for immediate coverage, accidental death benefits cost a few dollars more per month.

American Amicable

  • In business since: 1910
  • Best for: Tobacco users.
  • Pros: Fast underwriting decision and application process, many customizations available like waiver of premium.
  • Cons: Rates usually higher than the competition.

AIG

  • In business since: 1919
  • Best for: If you can’t qualify for immediate coverage with other companies.
  • Pros: No health questions, guaranteed acceptance.
  • Cons: You’ll need to wait 24 months to get the full death benefit, rates can be high since they will accept any health conditions.

What about the companies who advertise plans for $9.95 a month?

Life insurance companies like Colonial Penn, AARP, and Gerber offer very cheap final expense life insurance plans.

Bottom line? You get what you pay for. A few bucks a month is not going to get you much of a death benefit. For example, $9.95 per month will get a 72 year old female a measly $896 in coverage.

What’s more, these companies usually only offer graded or guaranteed acceptance plans. You won’t get the full death benefit until 2-3 years have passed, and sometimes the rates will go up as time passes.

If you want straightforward coverage with a large enough benefit to make a difference to your family, it’s going to cost more than “pennies a day.”

Why buy your policy through us?

  • You will only hear from us, not dozens of nameless, faceless agents.
    • Most websites offering quotes are “lead generation” sites. Once you enter your contact information to get the quote, they share and/or sell it to several insurance agencies or brokers. That’s why your phone blows up every time you’ve requested a quote in the past.
  • We don’t care which insurance company you go with, as long as it’s the right fit for you.
    • We’re brokers, which means we work for our clients, not an insurance company. We have access to several companies, but we’re not partial to any one of them.
    • At any given time, some companies are more competitive than others. We’ll tend to recommend those companies if we know it means a lower rate and/or more benefits. But that’s the extent of any bias we might have.
  • We’ve been doing this a long time.
    • Many life insurance agents got their license 2 weeks ago and are in it for a quick buck. Not to put them down, but it’s pretty easy to get licensed.
    • What isn’t easy is accruing 10+ years of experience helping thousands of people and Fortune 500 companies make insurance decisions. We have that experience.

Who we are

Stroman Insurance Advisors is a health and life insurance brokerage that specializes in the senior market. We are based in Atlanta, Georgia and serve clients in 19 U.S. states.

About Andy Stroman, the founder

Andy Stroman is the founder of Stroman Insurance Advisors. He is a second-generation insurance advisor who is dedicated to helping seniors protect their health and wealth in retirement.

Andy lives in Marietta, GA with his wife and newborn daughter. If you’re traveling to the Atlanta area, ask him for his legendary list of favorite restaurants.

Andy’s accomplishments include:

  • Licensed life and health insurance agent in 19 states.
  • Helped more than 2,000 people with Medicare, life insurance, and employee benefits decisions.
  • Career experience with large insurance companies, employee benefits consultancies, and prominent Medicare agencies in the Southeast U.S.
  • Earned a Masters of Business Administration and a Bachelor’s in Economics from The University of Georgia. Go Dawgs!
  • Can change a diaper in record time, with surgical precision, in the dark, at 2 a.m…. and could probably do it blindfolded, too.

Testimonials

“Andy did a wonderful job of processing our coverage. He gave us the details before they happened, made sure we were appraised of the each situation and we completed our change smoothly without interruption.”

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

-Jim, Age 74

“Andy has done an amazing job with all my clients he has contacted. He truly enjoys educating people and doesn’t cut any corners in the process. Andy is extremely thorough, organized, communicative, and makes sure there are no loose ends that need addressing. Most importantly, he does a great job of simplifying an intimidating and complex subject matter. Despite his level of expertise, Andy delivers his message without condescension, where an individual might otherwise feel ignorant or insecure about their lack of Medicare knowledge. I have the utmost confidence in him and plan to continue putting any of my clients in touch with him for their Medicare needs and questions.”

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

-Financial Advisor

“Having him assist me made me more confident in my decision as I know it will for you too! I highly recommend him!”

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

-Lisa, Age 65

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AUTHOR

Andy Stroman is the founder of Stroman Insurance Advisors. He is a second-generation licensed health insurance broker who specializes in Medicare and Individual Health Insurance.

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