How to Buy Life Insurance: Step-by-Step Guide

Buying life insurance can be an important step in ensuring that your loved ones are protected financially in the event of your unexpected death. However, it can be a complex process, with many different types of policies, coverage options, and insurance providers to choose from.

In this article, we will provide a step-by-step guide to help you navigate the process of buying life insurance. From assessing your needs and choosing a policy to applying for coverage and making payments, this guide will provide you with the information you need to make an informed decision about the best life insurance policy for you and your loved ones.

Who needs life insurance?

It’s crucial to first consider who needs to get life insurance before asking how to get it. After all, purchasing life insurance would be pointless if it weren’t required.

Nonetheless, the great majority of people actually require life insurance. Any person who is supported by others needs life insurance. It may be close family members like aged parents, a spouse, or kids. Maybe it might be a business associate.

Learning how to purchase life insurance is crucial for everyone, not just those who have dependents who depend on their income. If someone relies on their services, it is also necessary for a customer to purchase it. A parent who stays at home, for instance, provides important family support. Someone could need to be compensated to offer care if the parent passed away. These expenses should be covered by life insurance.

When should a person purchase life insurance?

When to purchase life insurance is a difficult decision. Depending on the circumstances specific to each person. Yet, as soon as someone is dependent upon them, it is imperative that they purchase life insurance. People frequently purchase life insurance when they get married, purchase a home together, or have a kid.

In some circumstances, purchasing life insurance even prior to having dependents makes sense. This might be a smart move for someone who anticipates relying on someone at some point in the future. A person who intends to get married and have kids, for instance, might wish to purchase life insurance when they are still young, even before they get hitched.

When comparing life insurance premiums by age, this can make sense. If insurance is bought when a person is young, the premiums may be significantly less. Those who quickly learn how to purchase life insurance may also be able to do so before pre-existing problems arise. Otherwise, they could be unable to purchase coverage in the future or their life insurance might become more expensive.

How do you qualify for life insurance?

When figuring out how to get life insurance, it’s important to know how to qualify for coverage. For most term and whole life policies, this involves:

  • Submitting an application for coverage
  • Answering medical questions
  • Undergoing a medical exam

Some insurers allow people to buy coverage without an exam, regardless of medical status. These types of policies are called guaranteed issue. They usually don’t provide much coverage. And there may be rules limiting when the death benefit is paid out. For example, some guaranteed issue policies have a long waiting period before beneficiaries can receive the full amount.

When deciding how to get life insurance, it’s important to research all coverage options to find the policy that’s the best fit.

Decide how much life insurance you need

Figuring out how much life insurance to purchase is one of the more complicated parts of determining how to buy life insurance.

Some experts recommend simply buying coverage equaling 10 to 12 times annual earnings. However, consumers can also use the DIME formula to get a more accurate estimate of how much coverage is needed. Here are the factors considered in the DIME formula that can be helpful when determining how to get life insurance.


Individuals determining how to get life insurance may want to buy sufficient coverage to repay their debt in full. This would mean loved ones aren’t left struggling to repay debt that was taken out jointly.


Life insurance serves as a replacement of the income the deceased person was earning. It helps ensure those dependent on that income don’t face financial shortfalls. Consumers determining how to buy life insurance should determine how many years of income replacement they’ll need. They can then buy coverage that provides it.


Many people looking into how to get life insurance will have a mortgage on their homes. They may want to ensure their policy offers enough money to pay off their home loan in full so surviving loved ones can inherit the house free and clear of debt.


If a person has children when determining how to get life insurance, it is a good idea to ensure the death benefit is large enough to cover their educational costs.

Select the type of life insurance policy that’s best for you

Several types of life insurance exist. Term and whole life insurance are the two most popular and comprehensive varieties. But how do term and whole life insurance differ from one another?

Term life insurance is only active for a predetermined amount of time. For instance, a policy might offer 15 to 30 years of protection. If a 30-year term policy was obtained, the death benefit would be paid to surviving family members if the insured passed away during that time. But, if they passed away at least 31 years after their coverage began, no death benefit would be paid.

There is no predetermined period of coverage for whole life insurance. It can continue to be in force as long as the policyholder continues to pay the premiums. There is also an investment component to it. The premiums paid by the policyholder go above and beyond the cost of providing insurance. The money is put to work. Policyholders can either surrender their insurance or borrow money against it once it has accumulated monetary value.

When deciding how to obtain life insurance, term insurance policies are the best choice for the majority of people. They are more affordable, and since most people eventually lose their source of income, they don’t always need coverage. A better return on investment can often be obtained through alternatives to whole life insurance contracts.

Compare life insurance

One of the most important steps in figuring out how to purchase life insurance is learning how to choose life insurance firms. This is true since there are numerous insurers available, and various people have different preferences for the finest life insurance companies. They might not always be the biggest providers of life insurance.

Customers should try to receive quotations from several different insurers if they want to get the greatest and most complete coverage at the most reasonable price. In order to make sure their families are completely insured and they aren’t spending more than is necessary, they can use this to evaluate prices and coverage options. Each life insurance provider varies at least slightly from the others.

The good news is that it’s now simple to purchase life insurance online, making it easier than ever to compare estimates.

Apply for life insurance

There are multiple different steps involved when determining how to buy life insurance. These steps go beyond simply making the choice to apply for life insurance. Here are some of the things that consumers will need to do.

Collect the documents you’ll need

When a person decides to buy life insurance policy protections, it’s important to gather any necessary documents.

This can include identifying documentation such as a driver’s license. Having medical records ready to refer to can also be helpful in answering application questions accurately.

Choose coverage options

When determining how to buy life insurance, it’s helpful to consider what type of coverage is desired.

This means deciding between term and whole life coverage. Consumers may also want to research riders they are interested in. These provide add-on coverage, offering additional protection. Some common riders include:

  • Return of premium rider: Allows policyholders to get their premiums back on a term life policy if they do not die during their coverage period.
  • Accelerated death benefit rider: Allows policyholders to access some of the money from the death benefit while they are still alive to cover medical costs associated with a terminal illness.
  • Waiver of premium for disability rider: Allows policyholders to keep their coverage in effect but to stop paying premiums if they become disabled.

Compare quotes

Comparing quotes before making a decision to get life insurance is one of the best strategies to reduce the cost of life insurance. The best term life insurance prices can be found by comparing quotes from several insurers.

Before comparing prices, it’s a good idea to decide what coverage is wanted. Researching possibilities for where to purchase life insurance is crucial when figuring out how to do so. Customers can shop online. They can also collaborate with insurance agents that work for insurance firms. Alternately, consumers can deal with independent agents who can assist them in comparing insurance quotes from several carriers.

Consider doing this action when choosing how to purchase life insurance because it will help you choose the most affordable option.

Submit an application

Consumers can submit an application to the insurer that offers the lowest initial estimates after investigating their insurance options. When requesting coverage, applicants must provide their identifying information as well as more thorough answers to questions regarding their medical history and current state of health.

Take the examination

When deciding how to obtain life insurance, a medical examination is typically required. This examination is scheduled by an insurance provider with a doctor they employ. The doctor will visit the application to do a basic physical, which will include drawing blood and testing the applicant’s urine.

If the insurer gives coverage and what the premium rates are will depend on the exam results and responses to medical history inquiries.

Sign up for coverage

After the medical exam, customers can evaluate the price and coverage details provided by the insurer and purchase coverage.

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