I’ll be honest with you. I’m still relatively young and I’ve never thought about getting life insurance until recently, despite being the sole breadwinner in the family. Frankly, finances could be tough for my wife and our two young kids if something were to happen to me.
Despite those facts, having a policy would still not be on my radar if it wasn’t for the passing of my dad (and having to file the claim for my mom). Why didn’t I think of getting the safety net earlier? For someone like myself, a life insurance is a no-brainer. In fact, as I think about the benefits, even those who are single may want to consider getting life insurance. Are you single? Here are a few reasons why you might want to give life insurance serious thought.
You May Not Be Single Forever
This is the biggest reason someone single should get life insurance. You might be living carefree now, so you don’t see a need. I get it. No spouse, no kids. Still, life changes. If you don’t get a policy now, you may just put it off longer than you should. Like I did. If your life situation changes rapidly, you might just forget about the whole thing. Trust me, when you are getting married, having young kids, changing jobs, and generally trying to improve your quality of life all in a span of a few short years, the last thing on your mind is to get insurance.
Life insurance is extremely cheap if you get it while you are young. The cost of doing it early is much less than you think. And if your living situation does suddenly change, you’ll already be covered.
It’s Cheaper Now
Life insurance can become very expensive if you wait until later in life. You know, until when you might not be single anymore. Start young, though, and chances are extremely low that you’ll pay anything substantial. However, if apply later, your family’s health history, your daily habits, and many other factors can affect whether you’ll pay a reasonable price or not.
Paying a ton isn’t even the worst case scenario though. Some people, with pre-existing health conditions, can’t even get an life insurance of any kind. They are simply deemed too high of a risk for them. The earlier in life you apply, the better your chances are to get a decent policy in place. Most life insurance policies are locked in — either for a set number of years or your entire life — so your cost won’t change if your health takes a sudden turn for the worse.
Thinking Beyond a Spouse or Children
There may be other people you want to leave money for, even if it’s not your spouse or chldren. Your parents, for example, may be someone you want taken care of if something were to happen to you. Or a sibling, niece, or nephew. While no amount of money is ever going to replace a loss of a family member, it can definitely help in other areas of their life.
You may even want to leave something behind for other important people or things in your life. Maybe for your best friend. Perhaps you have a favorite charity that can definitely use your help. Even pets aren’t off limits. Just because you’re single doesn’t mean you can still use a life insurance payout for good after you’re gone.
You May Share Some Debt
Why is this important? Just because something happens to one of the borrowers doesn’t mean their portion of the debt is forgiven. If you co-signed a loan with someone and pass away unexpectedly, the other co-signers will have to assume the entire debt. This can obviously bring some hardship, especially if the debt is fairly large. A life insurance payout takes care of this potentially sticky situation for your other co-borrowers.
Do everyone a favor and at least make sure you have enough life insurance to cover any shared debts (car loans, student debt, or mortgages). Otherwise, you surviving co-signers will not only have to deal with the debt all by themselves, but they will also be constantly reminded that they are paying for your portion. That’s not a fun memory to have.
You Might Be Extra Honorable
You might be someone who doesn’t want to owe anybody money. None. Ever. Even if you don’t actually have to pay for it ever again. Many people, rightly so, have no problem leaving debts behind when they pass. After all, money doesn’t matter to anybody in the grave. And legally, debt collectors cannot go after your heirs to get paid. (Although plenty of scummy ones will still try). Still, you may not like the idea that you’ll owe a bunch of money when you die. If so, a life insurance policy is just the ticket. You you can simply direct the proceeds to pay off any debt that you still have outstanding.
Your Funeral Costs
You will hopefully have someone to take care of your funeral arrangements, but you’ll still want to pay for it yourself. Even if you don’t care about money when you die, you may care about how your end-of-life ceremony is handled. You may have wishes for a decently large end-of-life celebration. Or maybe you just want a simple cremation with no gathering whatsoever. Whatever the case may be, there will still be some expenses. Someone will need to cover those costs. Do you really want your parents or friends to be saddled with the burden of having to pay? I didn’t think so.
The Proceeds Will Help
We are in the process of making my dad’s life insurance claim. He only bought a small policy, so the claim isn’t substantial. Still, that amount of money is going to be a decent help to my mom’s day-to-day expenses. There’s also another benefit. Everyone is viewing this money as a gift from my dad. Even if it’s not an earth-shattering amount, knowing that Dad took the time and sacrificed some of his discretionary spending to take care of our mom when he passes makes our hearts just a bit warmer in this time of grieving.
Don’t you want that for those close to you?