A term life insurance policy may not suit everyone due to varying policy lengths, coverage amounts, and objectives. But for those interested in enrolling in term life insurance, these companies are among the best for acquiring a policy.
They are highly reputable and have generated praise, offering affordable term life coverage that benefits its policyholders. Here, we'll discuss our best term life insurance companies, their coverage, their best qualities, and the benefits of enrolling in their policies.
Best term life insurance: shortlist
- Everyday Life - best variety of term policies
- TruStage - best term life policy for immediate coverage
- Legal & General - best term life insurance for long-term coverage
- SBLI - best term life insurance company values
Best term life insurance companies in 2023
Best-of lists have a degree of subjectivity, but in this case, each company earned its spot based on its objective qualities. We assessed companies using AM Best ratings, critical reception among publications, purchasers of policies from these companies, add-ons, Better Business Bureau scores, and how quickly these policies can be obtained. Below we review the best rated term life insurance policies according to our research:
1. Everyday Life — best term life insurance rates with a variety of policies
Everyday Life is ranked as the best company for term life insurance in our list. It is a brokerage that works with the top insurance carriers in the nation. It distinguishes itself from the rest by its three-step approach to enrollment. The first step is calculating insurance needs based on a few personal details, and once entered, your best options instantly appear before you. Second, you'll complete your application after selecting a policy.
Finally, you'll be approved within seconds. This entire process takes about 15 minutes on average. Coverage starts at just $4 per month, and the average premium is $15 monthly. Convenience, cost-effectiveness, and comfort are the three defining qualities of Everyday Life's services, as these low-cost policies are attainable without the need for a medical exam or a lengthy enrollment process.
Policies offered: Accidental Death, Guaranteed Acceptance Whole Life, No Exam, Term Life, and Whole Life
2. TruStage — best term life policy for immediate coverage
TruStage offers several insurance and investment options for individuals and businesses, and as of now, insures 20 million individuals. So far, the company has over $2 billion in total benefits paid, representing its status as a trustworthy and financially strong insurance company, earning it an AM Best rating of A.
TruStage offers term life policies for individuals ages 18 to 69 and allows for renewal to make coverage last until age 80. Coverage can be up to $300,000, with no medical exam required.
Policies offered: Guaranteed Acceptance Whole Life, Term Life, and Whole Life
3. Legal & General — best term life insurance for long-term coverage
Legal & General has established a legacy of excellence in its near-200 years. With over 150,000 agents worldwide, $1.4 trillion in assets, and close to $1 billion in annual claims, it's no wonder this company is the 7th largest insurance company in the world. This company has proven to be one of the most reliable, too, as it has received an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau and another A+ rating from AM Best.
Legal & General offers term policies to those up to age 75, with policies lasting up to 40 years. Policyholders can attach up to three riders to enhance coverage at an affordable rate, and by stacking riders, individuals get more provisions, more coverage, and more peace of mind.
Policies offered: Term Life and Universal Life
4. SBLI — best term life insurance company values
Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis founded SBLI, and it has been operating since 1907. It isn't a publicly traded company. Instead, it is owned by its policyholders. This company has attained A+ ratings from the Better Business Bureau and AM Best. Their standard term policies range from 10 to 30 years, providing between $100,000 and $10 million in coverage for individuals ages 18 to 74.
After the term ends, policyholders have the option of annual renewal until age 85, as well as converting their term policy into a whole life policy. SBLI also offers simple term insurance, which ranges from 10 to 20 years with up to $1 million in coverage for individuals aged 18 to 50 and up to $500,000 for those aged 51 to 55. Simple term doesn't require a medical exam and can be purchased online, whereas traditional term may require a medical exam.
Policies offered: Simple Term, Term Life, and Whole Life
Top term life insurance policies compared
This table provides an overview of what to expect with each company's term policies, showing the requirements, basic enrollment process details, available coverage, and reputation based on the Better Business Bureau rating.
It's a glance at the potential deciding factors a future policyholder may have when seeking a term life insurance policy, with term lengths, qualifying ages, coverage amounts, medical exam requirements, whether coverage can be obtained online, and Better Business Bureau ratings presented in the same table.
|Company||Term length||Qualifying ages||Coverage amount||Medical exam||Online application||BBB rating|
|Everyday Life||Brokerage, varies by term policy issuing company ||Varies||Varies||No||Yes||A+|
|Legal & General||Up to 40 years||20 to 75 years||$100,000 - $10 million and above (no coverage cap)||May require medical exam; no-exam options available||No, must speak with representative||A+|
|SBLI||10 to 30 years for standard term, 10 to 20 years for simple term||18 to 74 years for standard term, |
18 to 55 years for simple term
|Up to $10 million for standard term, up to $1 million for simple term||May require medical exam for standard term, no medical exam for simple term||Simple term only||A+|
|TruStage||Renewable every 5 years (last renewal at age 75 for coverage until age 80)||18 to 69||$10,000 - $300,000||No||No, must speak with representative||A+ (not accredited)|
Ranking the best term life insurance quotes: our methodology
Our methodology utilized the most objective measures possible. As a future policyholder looking for a company you can trust, you want term life insurance from a company with a proven track record, and that's something that can be said for every company listed here.
- Overall value. This factor accounts for the policies these companies offer, how policyholders can customize coverage via add-ons, their prices, and the overall satisfaction.
- Policies offered. This list strictly consists of the best companies for term life insurance, however, we also accounted for the type of add-ons and overall customization.
- Financial strength. All companies on this list are reliable when it comes to paying the death benefit. We used AM Best ratings to get an objective measure of financial strength.
- Online reputation. A top-tier company shapes its reputation through years of consistent, high-quality customer service. We evaluated this through Better Business Bureau ratings.
- Number of complaints. Negative reviews will always be part of every company's review profile. However, when the number of complaints reaches a substantial level, it indicates a greater likelihood that a company may not be worth contacting.
- Ease of application. These companies not only make it easy to find a policy that works for you, but they also minimize the amount of time it takes to go from policy inquiry to acquisition.
What is term life insurance?
Term life is a temporary insurance policy designed to cover individuals for a certain number of years. The death benefit is only disbursed if the policyholder dies during the term. If the policyholder outlives the policy, their loved ones won't get the death benefit unless they opt to renew the term.
Individuals who are starting families may gravitate toward this type of life insurance because it can help cover housing expenses in their absence. It can cover everyday living costs plus outstanding mortgage balances so that the individual's spouse and children can maintain the same standard of living without fear of losing the home.
Who should pick a term life insurance?
Term life insurance is suitable for anyone who wants simple, inexpensive life insurance coverage that lasts a set number of years. This can be a priority for different reasons. Younger individuals starting families may prefer this type of life insurance.
Some use it to target mortgage costs and may even choose a death benefit that decreases throughout the term to match the mortgage balance so that their loved ones don't have to worry about their home being foreclosed. Others use it to provide general financial relief, which includes covering miscellaneous expenses, stashing away in a savings account, or a mix of both.
Term life is neither strictly for nor exclusive to a particular age group, and its death benefit has uses as diverse as the policyholder's intents and purposes behind buying the policy.
Cons of term life insurance
The disadvantages of term life insurance are usually inherent to the policy's function. It should be noted that some term policies come with riders, which are add-ons that can offset the policy's disadvantages while improving the coverage.
- Expiration. When a term ends, it's over. Your loved ones won't get the death benefit once your term policy expires.
- You won't be reimbursed for the premiums you paid. The funds you contributed for the number of years you held it won't be given back to you.
- No savings component. You won't be able to enjoy the same long-term cash value growth offered by whole life insurance.
- You won't be able to borrow against your policy. This comes as a consequence of a lack of a cash value component. Your term life coverage won't be a source of emergency funds.
Types of term life insurance
Much like permanent life insurance, term life insurance is available in several types. These policy types address the unique goals and concerns that individuals commonly have when purchasing term life insurance. For someone who wants to keep the death benefit the same, there's a term life policy.
For the one who wants a term with the option to continue coverage, there's a policy, too. There are also term policies for those who want to change their policies into whole life policies and policies for individuals who seek a decreasing death benefit.
Term life death benefits are not always the same throughout the policy's life. When you choose level term, your policy's death benefit will remain the same (level) as the years pass. This is ideal if you want your policy's death benefit to be a greater source of financial relief.
Return of premium
A return of premium term life insurance policy addresses one of the significant downsides of outliving a term policy. The monthly premiums can add up to thousands of dollars spent over the years.
If those thousands of dollars never serve their ultimate purpose of exchanging premiums for a financial windfall for loved ones, it can be interpreted as a wasted investment. When you have a return of premium, if you outlive your policy's term, you'll get a refund on the premiums you paid over the years.
Some may prefer to keep coverage going instead of being refunded premiums upon policy expiration. With a renewable term, your premiums are level throughout your term, but every time you renew, your premiums will increase.
How often you can renew will depend on the conditions of the policy itself - one may require yearly renewal, whereas another may be renewable after every five years, and another may only have to be renewed after a longer period of time.
This type of term policy is ideal for someone who anticipates a shift in priorities as life progresses. This term policy gives policyholders the freedom to convert their term policy into a whole life policy. This may be preferable to alternatives like renewable and return of premium policies because instead of adding temporary coverage or getting a refund, you'll get life insurance that never expires.
Decreasing term policies refer to a policy in which the death benefit gets lower as the years go by. Someone may purchase this with a particular debt in mind, as the death benefit will drop to closely match the debt's outstanding balance. Decreasing term life insurance will keep your loved from inheriting that debt.
Choosing the best term life insurance policy for you
These considerations will reveal the best term insurance plan for you. When searching for a term life policy to enroll in, you may want to keep these key features in mind throughout the decision process.
A standard coverage length is 30 years because individuals frequently choose term life insurance to coincide with their mortgages. This way, if the policyholder dies during that period, the mortgage expenses will be taken care of so that the burden of housing costs will not fall on the surviving spouse.
Renewal of policy
Policy renewal can be a safety net for those concerned about outliving their coverage. Someone who wants the option to continue coverage may want to look into a term life policy with guaranteed renewal or the ability to convert the policy into a whole life policy.
Amount of coverage
What expenses do you want your term life policy to cover? If you wish to cover basic funeral costs and medical expenses, you may want to choose a policy with a lower coverage amount. On the other hand, if you want your policy to cover your loved ones' significant expenses, such as education, housing, and additional costs, a policy with a larger payout may be better for you.
Add-ons bring customization to term life insurance. A person may be uncertain whether to buy a term life policy until presented with the option of a particular add-on. For instance, a conversion rider can ease a policyholder's fears of outliving a policy by allowing them to convert it into one that never expires.
How much does term life insurance cost?
Two individuals can get the same term life policy with identical coverage and the same expiration date and pay vastly different monthly rates. There are numerous reasons why you may pay higher premiums for life insurance. Insurance companies determine rates based on several life expectancy factors during their evaluations.
Generally, the lowest rates will always go to younger, healthier individuals. However, that doesn't mean the costs will be unaffordable for older individuals. The factors mentioned here commonly influence premium rates.
- Age. The younger you are, the lower your rates will be for term life insurance. This is because younger individuals are at a lower risk of passing away and are expected to live longer than their older counterparts, allowing them to pay premiums for a more extended period.
- Gender. Women pay lower rates than men because on average women have a higher life expectancy.
- Health history. Health history can indicate health issues to come, and it can reveal lifestyle habits that may have been causal factors in the individual's past health conditions.
- Pre-existing conditions. A pre-existing condition can cause rates to go up, but the extent of how high the premiums will be will also depend on the severity of the condition.
- Credit history. While not as impactful on rates as the factors listed above, it still plays a role in determining costs. Companies want to ensure that the policyholder will be reliable when making premium payments.
For further comparison, here is a table comparing what a $500,000 policy would cost for men and women at the age of 30. Here, you'll see a vast difference in monthly rates when comparing the same coverage amount for a whole life policy and a 30-year term life insurance policy:
|Policy type||Average monthly premium (women)||Average monthly premium (men)|
|30-year term life||$34.53||$42.45|
The above is based on averages and your quotes may vary depending on the company you choose to get your policy from, among other factors. However, you can expect to pay significantly more for whole life insurance - maybe even as much as over 10 times the amount you'd pay for a term policy.
Discover other top life insurance policies
If you've just started a family or are considering having children, you may also want to check out our article best life insurance for parents.
For those who have recently been diagnosed with cancer (or are caring for an individual diagnosed with cancer), the best life insurance for cancer patients lists the best companies that will provide coverage for those in ill health.
Younger individuals who want a head start on life insurance should consider the best life insurance for young adults that closely align with one's objectives for the present and future.
Older individuals who want to secure a quality life insurance policy quickly may want to check out the best life insurance for people over 50 that features great options regardless of age.
Which term life insurance is the best?
All term life insurance companies mentioned here rank among the best, but the best one for you will depend on which special feature appeals to you the most. Legal & General, for example, allows term coverage up to 40 years, others may be considered the best because policyholders can adjust their coverage throughout the policy term.
Can you have a 30-year term life insurance policy?
Yes, 30-year term life insurance policies are available. However, in most cases, that's the maximum number of years that term life policies are active. If you're nearing the 30-year mark on your term life coverage, you may want to renew coverage for another 30 years. If you have a convertible term policy, you can change your coverage from term to whole, making your coverage last a lifetime.
What term life insurance types can I buy?
Term life policies come in different forms, such as renewable term, decreasing term, convertible term, level term, and return of premium term. These types provide coverage while addressing a particular priority regarding the length of coverage, amount of coverage, and whether premiums are refunded following the expiration of coverage.
- Annuity. Term Life Insurance.
- Everyday Life. What Is The Difference Between Term And Whole Life Insurance Policies?
- Ladder. How to decrease your term life insurance through laddering.
- Legal & General. What is term life insurance?
- SBLI. SBLI Simple Term Life Insurance.