Generally, life insurance pays out a death benefit to your beneficiaries if you pass away while the policy is in force. There are many types of policies available. Term life insurance lasts a fixed amount of time, usually 10 to 30 years, and has affordable premiums. On the other hand, whole life insurance can cost more but covers you for life and helps you build wealth with cash value.

Both life insurance policy types can be great investments at any point in your adult life. This article will cover how term and whole life insurance policies could benefit young and single people, married couples and their families, and retirees.

Young and single

Even though young and single people often don’t have dependents, getting life insurance quotes online may still be a good idea:

Term life insurance

Your earning potential is usually less when you’re younger, and you may have fewer dependents at this stage of life. So, the lower premiums with term life insurance might fit better within your budget and coverage needs.

Whole life insurance

Many insurers let you lock in whole life insurance premiums once you buy a policy. So, purchasing a policy while you’re young may mean you won’t have to worry about the cost of higher premiums associated with older age. Additionally, you can start building cash value as early as possible to have a much larger pool of funds down the road.

Married or starting a family

Getting married and starting a family means more people relying on your income. If you die, a life insurance policy can replace that income and help your loved ones cover any remaining debts, like a mortgage or auto loan.

Term life insurance

Marriage and family come with many new expenses, making the low premiums of term life insurance an appealing option for newly married couples and their families.

Whole life insurance

The earlier you get whole life insurance, the cheaper the premiums. At the same time, you get peace of mind knowing you’ll never have to requalify for a new policy to keep your loved ones covered.

Plus, getting life insurance at this stage of life can give you a lot of time to build cash value. This can be a significant asset in protecting your family as it can help you cover emergencies, deal with home repairs, and help pay for your child’s college.


Life insurance is a key part of estate planning for older individuals. It offers an affordable way to provide heirs with a significant sum of cash tax-free when you pass away.

Term life insurance

When you’re older, life insurance premiums in general are more expensive. As a result, a term life policy can make great financial sense. It costs less than whole life insurance, and if you die before the policy expires, your beneficiaries can receive the death benefit.

Whole life insurance

Whole life insurance can be a larger investment when you retire, but the benefits can be worth it if you want lifelong coverage. You won’t have to worry about outliving the policy, and you can still build some cash value that you can borrow or withdraw from for retirement expenses.

The bottom line

As you go through the stages of life, your financial needs may change. However, both term and whole life insurance policies can fit into the picture, depending on your situation. When you’re young, term life insurance is easy to budget for. At the same time, getting a whole life policy allows you to lock in premiums and build cash value.

If you get married and start a family, term life insurance can provide your new family with adequate coverage while minimizing expenses. But, on the other hand, if you’re willing to spend more, whole life insurance gives you the peace of mind that comes with guaranteed coverage and lets you build wealth with cash value to provide for your family.

Term life insurance can make sense once you retire and have a shorter life expectancy because you save money while maximizing the chance your beneficiaries receive the death benefit. But whole life insurance can work well if you want coverage to last the rest of your life and save some extra money in the cash value component. Ultimately, you should look closely at your finances and personal circumstances in each stage of life to evaluate your life insurance needs.

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