Life insurance a no brainer?


Now that I have a wife and two kids, I’m looking into life insurance options. Neither I nor my wife have life insurance at the moment. Would like to hear what the general consensus is from leasehackrs. Is life insurance a no brainer? If so, what kind of policy (term/whole, at what age will policy expire, total coverage)? What kind of factors weigh on your decision making (family medical history, current net worth, etc)? Some details:

Male, 40 years old
Non-smoker, drink once or twice a month
Kids ages 2.5 and 1 years

Have a current term policy for my mortgage. Whole life policy since I was 20

I have term for myself and wife for 20 year term for decent chunk of covered money while being cheap.
Logic is to have it while kids still need our support and part with it when they reach tweties.


Term insurance. As @Lvs23 mentioned look for a 20 year level term policy for both of you.

Absolute no brainer. You need enough to be able to cover your wife and kids expenses and lifestyle for the next 17 years (or until she replaces you) should you pass away suddenly. Does you wife work? If she does, would she be able to continue working as a single parent? Would her income alone be enough? If she doesn’t work, how would she afford expenses for the next 17 years? Would you want her to be able to pay off the mortgage immidiately so she doesn’t have to worry about it? Do you have daughters and do you plan on paying for their weddings when the time comes?

These are all the questions you need to answer to determine how much you need to purchase. Many don’t like thinking or talking about it but you don’t want to out a burdon on your family.

Family history doesn’t matter, you could be hit by a bus tomorrow.

Buy term, invest the rest. Whole life is a shitty ROI, especially if you don’t get locked in young.


Ironically, if you become no-brained you could still be alive, but not qualify for life insurance pay-out since you are not dead.

So a better question is whether disability insurance to bridge you from being a breathing/alive earner to a dead-dude is a no brainer.

Since you are quite old in life insurance age, I recommend you getting term life with living benefits in case of terminal illnesses.


I’m licensed and have sold or worked with life insurance for decades. Happy to offer more insight via PM

Term is usually what you need and health (height and weight), family history, tobacco use and other factors come into play. Rule of thumb 10-15x income.

Other factors come into play on what company but if you have a family and they rely on you it’s a no brainer.


Term is kind of crappy if you don’t get locked in young as well. By the time most people are in their 40s their health metrics start to really suck… and the costs go up a ton. Oh, and don’t smoke cigarettes or do recreational drugs before you lock in the Term. Even legal recreational marijuana use will dramatically impact the premium.

Someone in their 30s can get a ridiculously cheap policy that I recall can have a modification for a higher pay-out without a new medical exam.


True, but term will be cheaper than whole life regardless of age. OP shop around, there are tons of companies to choose from. And yeah, don’t do any tobacco products before testing.

Someone in their 30s can get a ridiculously cheap policy that I recall can have a modification for a higher pay-out without a new medical exam.

I’m technically in my 30s for about 4 more months. Will that significantly reduce my premiums if I sign up for a policy before my actual 40th birthday?

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No, it’s not a hard cliff. I’m just saying men start hitting a “balding, fatter, ate too many donuts, slowing metabolism, kids interrupting their sleep, can’t exercise because work sucks, too much Wendy’s Nuggies, drinking lots of beer, and life burdens grind your soul to a pulp” health profile in their 40s.


Well it basically sounds like every single person with any semblance of financial literacy and has dependents has a life insurance policy. I guess $100/mo isn’t so bad for peace of mind.

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Anybody purchase life insurance through Fidelity? Was moving some stuff around and saw that there’s an option to purchase on their site.

When I sold policies the lock in price went up at every age, so yes. YMMV. Contact and insurance broker and get multiple quotes.

You should shop it arond or find a broker that can do it for you. Rule of thumb for the bread winner is to get 20 years income (or enough years until the kids are out of school) or a mix of 10 years income, mortgage balance and cost of all kids tuition. Put at least 1/2 that amount on the spouse that makes less than the primary income. However anything is better than nothing.

In reality only about 3% of term policies ever pay out. The ones that do are a huge blessing for the surving spouse and family.

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In a similar position to OP and know basically nothing about this. I’m curious why the default recommendation is 20 years? Wouldn’t that recommendation vary substantially depending on the amount of separate savings a family is able to accumulate? As kid gets older there would be fewer years of support needed and the amount of savings available to provide that support would have increased? Big picture, is that the idea or am I missing something?

You also don’t want a spouse to drain savings bc of a death. They have to retire, too.

It’s probably cheaper to get a 20 year now, then it would be to get a 10 year now and then another 10 year for less payout when the first expires. Being 10 years older makes the premium jump.

Compare 10, 20, 30 year policies and make a determination.

What is the % of term policies that pay out but it’s because the spouse murders the person with the insurance? Is it 2.9%? I’ve watched a lot of Forensic Files.

Term life insurance is a must For any adult with a wife and kids, simply because it isn’t forced on you as auto insurance and home insurance doesn’t mean you shouldn’t get it