Sunday, November 16, 2014

Regrets, we have a few

All parents have regrets about something they did or didn't do, and of course my husband and I are no exception. We make mistakes daily.

One thing we wish we had put more effort into was researching life insurance for us and our kids.

We seem to be okay in all other departments; we've set up education and retirement funds for both children. But it's the nagging thought that all of us are going to die at some point that has us flustered and not even sure where to begin in terms of protecting our family from financial ruin.


The back story: When our daughter was born, we booked an appointment to have someone come to our home and talk to us about life insurance. Admittedly, we weren't really prepared for this appointment, and much of what the gentleman told us just went over our heads.

But, of course, we signed up anyway and arranged to have monthly withdrawals come out of our account.

Four years have now gone by, and so another representative from this insurance company came to our house over the summer to ensure we were still happy with our plan and to let us know about other plans they carry.

During this conversation, it was revealed to us that the plan we had signed up for was only a term (temporary) plan. Meaning, in 11 years time, if we're still healthy and alive and the insurance remains intact without any claims, then it just expires and we lose all of the money we paid into it.

Huh?

My husband and I are baffled by the fact that we signed up for something in which we could stand to lose such a large sum of money and potentially receive nothing in return.

We expressed this shock and disappointment to the new representative, and he offered us an alternative. Essentially, if we acted right that very day, he could convert our plan into a more appropriate lifetime plan, so that way the money we had already paid into it would not be lost.

However, in order to successfully pull this off, we would have to then drastically increase our monthly payments, which, with me being on maternity leave, just isn't possible right now.

So he then suggested that we cease contributing to our RRSPs and instead use that money for these life insurance payments.

RED FLAG! RED FLAG! RED FLAG!

We've worked so hard over the years to ensure we're able to max out our RRSP payments each year, and so the thought of just abandoning them is terrifying to us.

But this representative's reasoning was that, with this new life insurance plan, we won't have any need for RRSPs. As in, we can borrow money from our own plans to be used in retirement -- interest free and tax free -- and not be penalized for it.

It was all very new and confusing to us, which made us very non-committal at the time, so we instead just decided to cut our losses and cancel our plan altogether.

And, essentially, we're now back at square one, looking for a life insurance plan that best suits our needs.

We want a plan that won't break the bank in terms of monthly payments, yet it has to grow enough to the point that our family will be secure should anything tragic take place.

Does anyone have any suggestions? We want to go through someone trustworthy and who is not just trying to make a sale.

Please share your thoughts with me!


2 comments:

  1. Wow Jo! We talked a bit on this awhile back but never realized how bad it was for you guys. Geoff and I have a plan thru Manulife Financial and we are happy with it. My lady (whom I have been dealing with for years) explained things really well with us and set us up with a plan that is a very reasonable price monthly and we are happy with it. As a matter of fact it is my 3rd plan with her. As I mentioned before that I did set up a plan for each of the kids thru Gerber Life. If you are interested I can get you the name of my Lady and when she is in town (usually February) she can probably meet with you and Steve.

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    1. Thanks Bron -- I do remember you telling me about this, and I'm definitely interested. I just want someone who is honest and will use normal terminology with us so that we know exactly what we're getting into, lol. This last guy we spoke with was obviously very good at his job, but he was hugely arrogant and constantly talking about things way over our head. We just didn't feel comfortable signing with him.

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