Before we begin our review of Primerica, we would like to acknowledge that it is a high-quality life insurance company that has become one of the largest term life insurance providers in the United States. However, there are a few things to keep in mind when considering Primerica as a life insurance option.
Firstly, Primerica only works with captive life insurance agents, which means that their products can only be sold by Primerica agents. As an independent life insurance brokerage, we are unable to offer any Primerica products to our clients. This makes us a direct competitor to Primerica.
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We want to be transparent with our readers and acknowledge that our inability to offer Primerica products may subconsciously influence our review. However, we believe that it is important for our readers to know this so that they can make an informed decision about their life insurance options.
Therefore, we encourage our readers to first inquire with Primerica directly to see what they can offer, and then contact us to see if we can provide a better solution to their life insurance needs.
Founded in 1977, Primerica Life Insurance Company quickly made an impact by revolutionizing the life insurance industry’s perception. At the time, permanent life insurance was commonly marketed as an essential investment due to its coverage and savings component. However, Primerica introduced the concept of buying term life insurance policies and investing the difference. This idea has been strong within the industry for 40 years, and many families have adopted it with their policies.
With short-term insurance in place at an affordable price, families can build an investment portfolio that they can control. Founder Arthur Williams had a vision to make life insurance accessible to all families, and the company grew significantly throughout the 1980s. In 2010, Primerica finally went public and is now listed on the New York Stock Exchange as PRI.
Headquartered in Duluth, Georgia, many sources suggest that Primerica is the biggest independent financial marketing organization in North America. It’s worth noting that as Primerica exclusively works with captive agents, independent brokerages like IBUSA cannot sell their products to clients. Nonetheless, as a top-tier life insurance company, we encourage readers to inquire with Primerica directly to see what they can offer and then compare their options with other life insurance providers.
Reviewing Primerica Life Insurance Policies
As mentioned, Primerica’s focus is on term life insurance policies, which means that coverage lasts for a set period of time. With no cash value component, these policies are affordable, allowing people to have more disposable income for other investments like stocks, mutual funds, and retirement plans. Compared to other companies, Primerica has a good payout percentage and pays out on nine out of every ten cases within two weeks.
There are some significant advantages to Primerica’s focus on term insurance, including the fact that each product is specialized. With 40 years of experience in this area, you can trust that they know what they’re doing, which can provide peace of mind.
No Conversion Rider
However, there are also some downsides. Primerica doesn’t offer permanent life insurance at all, which means you cannot add a conversion rider to change your term life policy into a permanent life insurance policy later. This lack of flexibility could be problematic if your circumstances change. For example, suppose you get a 15-year term life policy at age 35, but later develop a health condition that makes you uninsurable. If you had a term conversion rider, you would be able to convert all or a portion of your policy into permanent life insurance, regardless of any health or lifestyle conditions that would normally preclude you from getting insured. Unfortunately, if you have a Primerica policy, you don’t have this option and will have to forego life insurance once the term has expired.
Other Services and Products
In addition to its main term life options, Primerica offers numerous other services and products, including managed accounts, debt solutions, mutual fund investments, annuities, pre-paid legal services, health insurance, long-term care insurance, 401(k) and 457 plans, and auto and homeowners insurance.
When looking for a life insurance company, the official ratings from different companies can give a good insight into their financial stability, customer satisfaction, and the amount of complaints received.
Starting with A.M. Best, Primerica has been given an ‘A+’ rating which is classified as ‘Superior’. For life insurance companies, this little letter is very important because it shows whether the company is in a position to pay claims or not. With Primerica boasting one of the best ratings possible, you can be sure that your investment is safe.
From the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC), we can also see the amount of complaints received by the company. From this, we can gauge customer satisfaction and whether you would be just as happy.
In 2015, Primerica received a very good score compared to the rest of the market. For the life insurance market, the median score was ‘1’ and Primerica managed a score of ‘0.21’; this score counts the amount of complaints and then adjusts for market share. As you can see, this is well below average and a very good sign.
With this being said, there is a major drawback and it comes from the J.D. Power ratings.
In 2016, they looked at the 21 largest companies in the life insurance industry and Primerica actually finished second-to-last for customer satisfaction. In these ratings, there are five different categories assessed – policy offerings, billing and payment, overall satisfaction, interaction, and price.
In every single category, Primerica were rated as ‘Among the Rest’ which means that they were essentially second-best to most other companies.
Now that we have the basics out of the way, let’s dig a little deeper and assess the pros and cons of choosing Primerica. With this, you should be able to assess your own needs and see if they match up with the company on offer.
Term Insurance Specialists – For over 40 years, Primerica has been dealing with term life insurance which means that it has seen all the changes in the industry. As time goes on, the life insurance sector can see some large changes and Primerica has been through them to offer you the best policies.
If you have no interest in permanent life insurance, this is definitely one to consider because they are accustomed to dealing with the demands that you may have. When you talk to them, you should understand what you need and you should find a product to match.
Investment Advice – As we saw earlier, the main idea for Primerica is that you invest in your own cash value and the company can help you with this. In their many services, you can receive help with mutual fund investments, managed accounts, annuities, and more. Therefore, you can make the most of your investment and it can grow just as a regular cash value component would with permanent life insurance.
Good Official Ratings – On the whole, the official ratings are very good especially with A.M. Best and the National Association of Insurance Commissioners. With these two, the ratings are as good as you will see which always allows for peace of mind. If you or your family needs to claim, you can be confident that they can and will pay out.
Potential Primerica Cons
On the flip side, we also have a few negatives to bring to light. Although they might not be relevant to your decision, they might be something you wish to consider before buying a policy.
Pricing – Although the prices are generally very good because they only offer term life insurance which is cheaper, they cannot compete with the likes of Prudential, AIG, Banner Life, and Protective.
If you are looking for the best deals in the market, you would do better to shop around and get a few quotes. With any of the insurers listed previously, you would probably get a stronger deal and you can still invest on the side as you would with Primerica.
No Permanent Options – As you may know, there is always a huge drawback of choosing term life insurance because it will eventually run out.
When it does, you are forced to renew or find different coverage but, because you are older and could even have health issues, the premiums will have changed significantly.
In theory, the model of buying term life insurance and investing the rest is a very good one but it just doesn’t work if you need or prefer permanent insurance.
With no permanent insurance, you also cannot convert your term life policy into a more permanent one so it really can be limiting.
Jack of All Trades – If you have ever heard this phrase, you will know that it ends with ‘Master of None’ and this is the case for Primerica.
Over the years, they have become more than just a life insurance company because they also spend time pushing their financial services.
Sadly, this has been detrimental to their life insurance products and now many of the agents only work part-time.
With this, it means that they don’t have the knowledge they would do if they were full time workers.
Within the company itself, they seem to push existing agents to hire new agents with little to no experience.
Considering life insurance is in place to protect your family, it seems strange that we are trusting people with a lack of a financial background.
Sales Strategy – In truth, many people sum up Primerica with the word ‘strange’ and a lot of their activities does seem out of place in the life insurance market.
For example, their network sales strategy means that you will have friends and family members pitching the products.
Because there is a personal connection and you want to help, you may feel a little pressure to help and purchase a policy.
However, you should always compare the market and this is the last piece of advice we have for you here today.
Finding the Best Life Insurance Rates
As we have seen, Primerica can be an affordable option because they only sell term life insurance. This means that you will be in charge of the investing side rather than having a cash value on the policy.
To find the best term life insurance rates, you can work with a company or an agency that has access to numerous different insurers. Having this luxury will allow you to compare policies directly including price, benefits, policy details, lengths, and more.
Regardless of the route you choose, you should compare many different quotes to get the best price. Just like with car insurance or any other purchase, it’s essential to shop around.
You can use price comparison sites on your own or work with an agent to assess all your options. Once you find the five cheapest providers, you can look deeper to see who offers the best all-round protection. Doing so will help you buy an affordable policy that matches your needs.
Before making any decisions, you should talk to a professional about the different types of insurance available. If you haven’t yet decided that term life is right for you, you should also be looking into permanent life insurance, which remains in place until you die, and the premiums remain level throughout.
As long as you consider your needs and choose a policy and insurer that is right for you, you can’t go wrong!