What’s the Difference Between Term and Whole Life Insurance?


by Daniel McClain on Mar 25, 2015

Deciding between whole life and term insurance can be difficult and quite frankly confusing; your decision should be determined by your needs. The following explain some of the differences, values, downfalls, etc. of both types of insurance:

Whole Life Insurance

Alone, Lake, Shore, Thinking, Standing

Whole life insurance cannot be canceled by the carrier as long as premiums are paid on time; this kind of insurance provides life-long insurance protection. No matter what your health is like your insurance will stay the same; whole life insurance also builds cash value and in the future that amount can be used for any purpose you like.

Term Life Insurance

Term life insurance is specifically for those who need insurance protection but are unable to afford permanent life insurance, or they only need coverage for a specific amount of time. Term life insurance has a death benefit but the premiums will increase at certain intervals and have no cash value.

Whole Life Insurance Facts

  • For long-term needs
  • Cash value accumulation, accessible through loans or withdrawals
  • Initially has higher premiums
  • Premiums are guaranteed for the life of the policy

Term Life Insurance Facts

  • For short-term needs
  • For when funds are more limited
  • Pure death benefit protection
  • No cash value accumulation
  • Initially less expensive
  • Costs increase at each renewal
  • Premiums usually guaranteed for the first term


Educate yourself on the main differences and qualities of both types of insurance so that you can go about making a well-educated decision on what type is best for you and your family. Many people purchase life insurance but they do not fully understand the purpose, qualities, perks, and/or downsides of that insurance. So many believe that life insurance is meant to protect things like car loans and mortgages, but its main purpose is to protect the income your family anticipates from you. This is a great reason to learn the pros and cons of whole and term life insurance to ensure you and your loved ones are getting the best insurance for your wants and needs.

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