Senior clientele? Six tips to open more life insurance salesArticle added by Brian Leising on January 9, 2017
Ranked: #617 (169 pts)
Do you specialize in the senior insurance market? Do your clients think of you as just their Medicare
supplement, annuity or final expense agent?
Unfortunately many advisors make only one product sale per household and
never ask their clients about other potential life insurance planning needs. If
you were able to uncover the need for one insurance product, why couldn’t you
uncover another? Here are six open-ended
questions to help you do exactly that.
What planning have
you done for your funeral?
Listen to your clients speak. They might discuss their will, preferred
cemetery, the music to be played or even what funeral home to use. When they finish, follow up with “How will
your family pay for all that? Do they
really want to pay full price?”
This conversation could
lead to a fully underwritten life insurance policy, but don’t neglect basic
final expense policies. Some people
don’t need anything more than a basic burial plan. In lower income households, that may be the
only sale possible. Premiums are
guaranteed to remain level and underwriting is simple and fast. You should know whether your client qualifies
for coverage before you walk out the door.
People still purchase prepaid funerals from funeral homes, you can
offer them better value with greater leverage on their dollars.
When did you last
review your life insurance policies?
You should ask this question of everyone, whether you think they have a life insurance policy or
not. Many people have never reviewed
their old life insurance policies. They
may be paying too much or not enough.
Their coverage could be too low or missing key features. Older universal life policies that have not
been funded properly may not remain in force for a client’s full life
expectancy. Conversely, cash rich whole
life policies may not offer enough leverage for a client’s dollars.
Newer universal life plans with a no-lapse guarantee can
help in both cases. Find an annual
review fact finder you like and complete it at every appointment. You will help your clients and uncover more
new business than you have in the past.
How will you pay for
physical assistance as you age?
Once you have determined your client has the proper amount
of life insurance coverage, you should ask how they have protected themselves from
the high costs of extended care should they become ill or frail as they age. The
high cost of long term care is the greatest threat to a client’s retirement
funds by far. After a fall, the stock
market bounces back, the elderly do not.
Long term care insurance has traditionally been used to help,
but is not a good fit for everyone. Life
insurance based long term care policies offer protection with guarantees not
found in traditional policies. The life
insurance based solutions guarantee the client’s premiums will never
change. They also guarantee a benefit
will be paid out. If the long term care
benefit is never used, the death benefit will pass to the insured’s heirs. Your clients are not really protected until
they have some form of extended care coverage in place.
Where do you keep
your safe money? What is the purpose of
Aside from emergency money, many seniors have funds they do
not plan to spend in their lifetime. The
money is earmarked for their children or grandchildren and usually not sitting
in a tax-favored vehicle. Many seniors
are not aware of the tax implications of their current arrangement.
CD’s, savings accounts and mutual funds lose net value every
year due to taxes. Annuities and
qualified plans can defer taxes, but that just means the value to be taxed will
be greater when received by the next generation.
Why not move those dollars into a vehicle that offers
immediate leverage (no need to wait for the funds to grow) and also avoids
taxation? A single premium life
insurance policy works perfectly in these cases. The death benefit will always be greater than
the single premium paid by the client and will pass tax-free to their heirs.
What steps have you
taken to minimize your taxable estate to your heirs?
Do you need a good way to open up an estate planning
conversation with a prospect you think may have a problem? Maybe a business owner? This question offers an easy way to lead into
the conversation. You are assuming they
have already done some planning, even though we know most people have done very
little actual estate planning.
Based on current exclusion amounts, the Federal estate tax
may not apply in many situations but your state may impose its own state estate
taxes at much lower thresholds. Additionally, income or capital gains taxes may
also apply. Make sure you are working
with an attorney who specializes in estate planning to minimize your client’s
taxable estate first. If needed, life
insurance can provide immediate funds to pay any remaining tax without
handles your grandchildren’s life insurance and college funds?
When you meet in the home of a
grandparent, what photos do you see on their walls? The photos of their
children are long gone and the walls are now adorned by their adorable
grandchildren. Just try to ask a question about their grandchildren and see if
you can get a word in edgewise for the next hour. They love to talk about their
grandchildren and would do just about anything for them. Did you ever think to
ask about the life insurance or college plans of those grandchildren?
Chances are your senior clients are in
a better position than their adult children to help with both needs. They are at a stage of their lives where
their primary concern is leaving a legacy.
Two gifts their grandchildren will always remember will be their first
life insurance policy and their college tuition paid for by Grandma and
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