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Financial well-being for everyone: Term life insurance

Insurance Read Time: 4 min

In the past few years, the word adulting has gone from social media mentions to a full-fledged definition in the Merriam-Webster dictionary. It’s easy to see why: “attend[ing] to the ordinary tasks required of a responsible adult,” as Merriam-Webster says, can be a real challenge. But some of the challenges of adulting can be less intimidating than they seem, like getting life insurance. With some basic education, getting life insurance can be painless, inexpensive, and make a big difference in long-term financial security for you and your loved ones. Here are some of the basics to get you started!

What is term life insurance?

Term life insurance refers to an insurance policy that is good for a fixed amount of time, such as 10, 20 or 30 years (the “term”). If you should die within the life insurance term, your beneficiaries will receive the amount designated by your policy. With the flexibility of term life insurance, you can choose both the term and the amount of coverage.

Term life differs from other kinds of insurance because the coverage period is usually a shorter, more defined time. As a result, term life policies tend to be less expensive than other types of insurance, while still helping create financial security for your family. And this financial support can also extend beyond your loved ones. Some term life products let you select a charity or nonprofit to receive a bonus amount in addition to what is paid to your.1

How much insurance is enough?

A general guideline is to get a term life policy that is ten times more than your annual salary. If you earn $100,000 a year, then you’d purchase a policy with $1,000,000 in coverage.2 Everyone has a unique financial situation. Remember that these are general guidelines, and you’ll want to fine-tune your strategy according to your specific situation. Do you have multiple children or a child who needs extra support, for example?

Similar to other financial goals, when you’re part of a couple it’s important to be on the same page when it comes to protection. If you have a partner, talk with them about what one of you would need in case something happened to the other. What kind of resources would your family need if they lost either of your contribution?

How much does term life insurance cost?

The cost of term life insurance varies based on different factors, such as age, gender and lifestyle choices. For instance, generally speaking, men pay a little more than women, and smokers pay more than non-smokers. Yet within these variations, there are some broad cost estimates to know.

A thirty-year-old female, non-smoker, in good health can likely get $1 million in life insurance coverage for a twenty-year term for around $50/month. Her male counterpart may have to pay an additional $12/month.3 In both of these scenarios, the insured is paying a minimal monthly premium to secure a financial safety net for their loved ones in the event of their premature death.

When should I get term life insurance?

With most insurance products, the younger you start the coverage, the less expensive it can be. That said, it is never too late either. Often people decide to purchase life insurance when they get married or have children, but you also don’t need to wait. You can assign anyone as your beneficiary, including parents, siblings, or a you support.

How do I set up a term life policy?

A great way to get started is by a financial professional. Financial professionals can answer questions about the right amount of coverage, monthly premium costs, length of the term, and more. They can also talk with you about how term life insurance can serve as a tool within a broader, long-term financial plan for you and your family.

People sometimes put off buying insurance, and unfortunately, procrastination can lead to tough consequences in the event of an emergency. Nobody likes to think about it, but anything can happen at any time. The best way to protect your loved ones — and score a big win for adulting — is to make your insurance plan now.


1 The Charitable Benefit rider is available on Guardian Level Term policies. Up to a maximum of $100,000. Subject to state availability. Guardian Level Term is issued by The Guardian Insurance & Annuity Company, Inc. (GIAC), a Delaware corporation whose principal place of business is 10 Hudson Yards, New York, NY 10001. 1 888 GUARDIAN (1 888 482 7342). Policy form numbers: GLT 10, 15, 20, 30: 20-GLT Charitable Benefit Rider: 20-CBR GIAC.

2 Life Insurance Buyer’s Guide, Your Money, The New York Times, Feb. 20, 2016

3 Term Life Insurance Rates 2021,


Material discussed is meant for general informational purposes only and is not to be construed as a recommendation or advice. Please note that individual situations can vary therefore, the information should be relied upon only when coordinated with individual professional advice.

Brought to you by The Guardian Network © 2022. The Guardian Life Insurance Company of America®, New York, NY 

2023-164951 Exp. 11/2025 *Pre-approved content*

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Sam Duffey
Sam Duffey
Ashford Brokerage, CA License #0J09024, AR License #15480533 Director of Brokerage Sales (205) 843-9434

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