Financial advisors agree The best term life insurance providers issue robust coverage, plenty of riders, level premiums, and term-to-permanent conversion options. Based on these criteria, we whittled down a starting list of 71 life insurance companies to a shortlist of 19, before deciding on the three with the best term life insurance policies. The final step, finding the cheapest premium, will be up to you.
Top 10 Term Life Insurance Companies
- Arthur E. Jongsma Jr., L. Mark Peterson, Timothy J. Bruce
- Philip Moeller
- Simon & Schuster
- Great product!
- Alcoholics Anonymous
- Richard H. Thaler, Cass R. Sunstein
- Penguin Books
- David McKnight
- CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform
- R. Nelson Nash
- Infinite Banking Concepts
- Prima Lifestyles
- David Chilton
- James E. Allen PhD MSPH NHA IP
- Springer Publishing Company
- Mark Minervini
- Kim D. H. Butler, Jack Burns, James Ranson
- Prosperity Economics Movement
How We Chose the Best Term Life Insurance Companies
We started by vetting 71 providers for their nationwide availability, financial strength, and ability to sell individual policies. Nineteen life insurance companies met our initial criteria. They’re all reputable providers with the resources to offer great coverage — meaning variable term lengths, easy ways to extend your coverage, guaranteed level premiums, and a robust selection of riders.
Flexible term policies
Our favorite life insurance companies offer two important policy options: guaranteed renewability and term-to-permanent conversion without a medical exam. These give you the option to extend your coverage out as far as your family needs it without jacking up your premium too much.
A guaranteed renewable policy (aka Guaranteed Insurability Rider, Renewal Provision, or Additional Purchase Option) ensures that you can renew your coverage when it’s about to expire. This could be important in light of major, unexpected life events. For instance, if a child opts for grad school, you may choose to extend your coverage until their schooling is finished. Whatever the circumstance, you’ll want to be sure your coverage is in place until your beneficiaries would no longer be in need of it.
Variety of available term lengths and riders
After narrowing down our list based on availability, financial strength, and term flexibility, we were left with five serious contenders for the best term life insurance company.
- Globe Life
- New York Life
- State Farm
- TIAA Life
Because life insurance is so personal, it’s important to choose a provider with robust features that let you tailor your coverage to your needs. In policy terms, this means the ability to choose an appropriate term length, comprehensive coverage, and any add-ons that protect against the contingencies you’re worried about. Some companies also offer certain “living benefits,” which can add value to your policy even if you never need to access its death benefit.
Rider options to customize your policy
Life insurance add-ons (also known as “riders”) can make your policy extra flexible and increase your financial security. Some riders protect you in the event that you’re unable to pay your premiums: The Waiver of Premium rider, for example, forgives your payments if you become permanently ill or disabled and can no longer work. Some, like the Spouse Insurance rider and the Child Term rider, allow to you extend coverage to your family members for a small fee.
Because life insurance is so incredibly personal, there’s no way we could evaluate which is the cheapest — you’ll need to shop around for the best premium prices when choosing a policy. Carriers price their policies according to a variety of risk factors, which differ from company to company. They all take into account things like age, physical build, medical history, heredity, driving record, and “risky” hobbies (BASE jumping, anyone?).
Why we chose it
Award-winning customer satisfaction
We take these customer rankings into strong consideration: When it comes to a product as personal and weighty as life insurance, you want to find a provider that offers great coverage and makes the insurance process go as smoothly as possible.
Impressive financial strength
State Farm also boasts some of the best financial strength ratings in the industry: A++ from A.M. Best, AA from S&P Global, and Aa1 from Moody’s. Among our top picks, it’s second only to TIAA’s perfect score. Financial strength is especially important when it comes to life insurance. Such contracts can last anywhere from five years to the rest of your life. Your provider needs to remain solvent for many years down the road, and top financial strength scores are the best way to guarantee it won’t go under.
Range of term lengths
State Farm is the only company we looked at that starts at just five years of coverage — with guaranteed renewal through age 95. It also allows you to convert your term policy to a permanent one through age 75, “regardless of health” (meaning no second medical exam). Terms between 10 and 30 years can only be bought in increments of 10 years, which does limit flexibility. However, a 20-year policy, which State Farm offers, remains the most popular option and “will do the job for 90%+ of Americans,” according to one life insurance expert.