4 Questions to Ask Yourself Before Purchasing A Direct Purchase Insurance (DPI)

Questions to ask before purchasing a direct purchase insurance

Written by Chew Jing Xuan

Direct Purchase Insurance (DPI) refers to whole or term life insurance products with total and permanent disability (TPD) and optional critical illness (CI) rider that can be directly purchased from life insurers. We have addressed the pros and cons of DPI as well as where to get them so if you are interested in purchasing a DPI, here are some questions to ask yourself whether getting a DPI is suitable for you.

#1 Are you savvy enough to make an informed choice?

It may seem like an attractive idea to get much cheaper premiums for your insurance without having to deal with pesky agents trying to upsell you certain products you don’t really need.

However, let’s be honest with ourselves, buying insurance is not as clear-cut as it may seem – from comparing coverage benefits, to looking at quotes or even understanding the terms and conditions of the products. This is especially so for the average layman who may not be well-versed with common insurance terms. Insurance agents can be of great help in simplifying the process of purchasing insurance.

Purchasing insurance is a long-term commitment and it is important that we buy the right products so we don’t have to be stuck with the wrong one, or even forgo paid premiums should we decide to cancel later.

That being said, we understand that getting the right financial advice is only possible with a good insurance agent who fully understands your needs and genuinely advise on products that truly benefits you. If you believe that you are financially savvy enough to know what products you want, perhaps DPI is a good option for you. It is ultimately up to one’s discretion whether the cost-savings of purchasing a DPI at the expense of sound financial advice is worth it.

#2 Do you mind handling the claims process by yourself? How about general enquiries?

With no agents involved, you would have to contact the insurer directly should you need to make any claims or enquiries.

Getting help via the call center might be a painful process considering that they have to handle hundreds of calls daily. Also, enduring red tapes (albeit necessary) of call centres, figuring your way about claims procedure and reading through long policy documents is the last thing you would like to experience during difficult times. With an insurance agent to serve you personally, you won’t need to find yourself stuck in the mess of settling claims in times of crises.

#3 What insurance products are you looking to buy?

Current DPI products only include term or whole life insurance with TPD cover and an option to add a rider for critical illness (CI).

While DPI products have generally similar features which make them easier to compare, they might not be ideal for those looking for more comprehensive products that will better suit their needs. Policies with additional benefits or riders might be of more value for an individual, but are not offered as DPI. Needless to say, more complicated products like endowment plans still have to be purchased through agents. Therefore it is imperative for you to understand your needs and what kind of products would be able to provide the coverage you need at the best value.

#4 How much coverage do you need?

For DPI, the maximum sum assured that can be purchased from one insurer is $400,000, with a sub-limit of $200,000 for whole life DPI.

This means that if you require higher protection needs than $400,000, you would have to buy from another insurer, with declaration made during application. This then boils down to the individual whether $400,000 is sufficient coverage or whether it’s worth the trouble to purchase from multiple insurers.

Furthermore, the CI rider for DPI only covers 30 out of the 37 CIs listed on the LIA website as these CIs are the most commonly claimed in Singapore. Although the 7 excluded CIs might be less common than the rest, it could still occur to anyone. After all, isn’t the purpose of insurance to cover for the unexpected? This may be an important factor of consideration for those who want to be well-covered for all critical illnesses.

To each his own

Ultimately, it is up to you to decide which method of purchasing life insurance is best suited for your personal needs. You might even consider using a combination of both DPI and buying through an agent to get the best coverage you need. That being said, you can also consider asking our pool of financial advisers who were carefully curated to ensure that you’re engaging with advisers of high caliber.

Been doing lots of research, but not sure who to engage to take the final step? Look no further! fundMyLife connects you to credible and incredible financial advisers privately and anonymously, based on the financial planning questions that you ask. We aim to empower Singaporeans to make financial decisions confidently.

Follow us on our fundMyLife Facebook page to get exciting updates and your dose of finance knowledge! Alternatively, the Insurance Discussion SG Facebook group is a good place to discuss insurance-related topics with fellow Singaporeans.

 

fML Reviews: Great Eastern Flexi Term and Flexi Living Term Premiums

Great Eastern Flexi Term and Flexi Term Living Premiums

In our previous article about Great Eastern Flexi Term and Flexi Living Term, we received some feedback. More specifically, the feedback involved discussing more on the Flexi Term and Flexi Living Term premiums. We get it. In a price conscious world out there, everyone wants a plan that is value-for-money. In this article, fundMyLife manually compiled Great Eastern Flexi Term and Flexi Living Term premiums and risk permanent repetitive motion syndrome.

Assumptions

An insurance premium for a term plan involves several factors: biological sex, smoking status, sum assured, and years of coverage. Given the enormous number of combinations and permutations available, we decided to fix one parameter, that is age.

We assume that the applicant is aged 25. In the subsequent tables, we will vary the following:

  1. Biological sex
  2. Smoking status
  3. Sum assured
  4. Number of years of coverage

Disclaimer: we do our best to get the most accurate information, which is accurate as of June 2018. However, we strongly recommend that you take these figures as a general guide and confirm the numbers with a trusty financial adviser.

Flexi Term and Flexi Living Term premium tables

We decided to lump the premiums for both policies together. To get the premium for a particular sum assured at a specific year of coverage, simply look at the intersection between the two values. For example, with reference to the table directly below, you will need to pay $117 per year for Flexi Term if your sum assured is $100,000 for 20 years’ of coverage. On the other hand, you need to $195 (the figure after 117) for the same sum assured and time length.

#1 Male, non-smoker

Great Eastern Flexi Term and Flexi Living Term premiums for a 25-year old male non-smoker
A table for a 25-year old non-smoker male for a range of sum assured for both Flexi Term and Flexi Living Term.

#2 Male, smoker

Great Eastern Flexi Term and Flexi Living Term premiums for a 25-year old male smoker
A table for a 25-year old smoker male for a range of sum assured for both Flexi Term and Flexi Living Term.

#3 Female, non-smoker

Great Eastern Flexi Term and Flexi Living Term premiums for a 25-year old female non-smoker
A table for a 25-year old non-smoker female for a range of sum assured for both Flexi Term and Flexi Living Term.

#4 Female, smoker

Great Eastern Flexi Term and Flexi Living Term premiums for a 25-year old female smoker
A table for a 25-year old smoker female for a range of sum assured for both Flexi Term and Flexi Living Term.

General observations

Based on the tabulated Flexi Term and Flexi Living Term premiums, we can see several notable things. Firstly, the premiums for Flexi Term are relatively level. To elaborate, there is little increase between 5 years, i.e. annual premiums for 2o years vs 25 years. Secondly, it does not pay to be a smoker wanting to purchase either policies. For Flexi Term, smokers for both sexes pay roughly 25-33% more. However, for Flexi Living Term, the difference is around 50%. This is not surprising, given that Flexi Living Term covers critical illness as well.

Ask fundMyLife financial questions today!

As the saying goes, knowing is half the battle won. We hope that these tables help you make a more informed choice with our Flexi Term and Flexi Living Term premiums tables.

However, if you’re still unsure about what you need, why not head on over to fundMyLife and ask our pool of financial advisers? Alternatively, you can check out our curated pool of individual advisers and ask them questions directly.

Been doing lots of research, but not sure who to engage to take the final step? Look no further! fundMyLife connects you to credible and incredible financial advisers privately and anonymously, based on the financial planning questions that you ask. We aim to empower Singaporeans to make financial decisions confidently.

Follow us on our fundMyLife Facebook page to get exciting updates and your dose of finance knowledge! Alternatively, the Insurance Discussion SG Facebook group is a good place to discuss insurance-related topics with fellow Singaporeans.

fML Reviews: NTUC GIFT

NTUC GIFT review

Written by Chew Jing Xuan

For those who own the NTUC membership card, did you know that being a NTUC member entitles you to beyond just supermarket perks? One of the many benefits would be life insurance with NTUC GIFT- a group term life insurance that NTUC members are entitled to when they join the union. Group insurance are plans that are usually subscribed by employers or group administrator to provide some basic coverage for their employees or members. Around 15% of Singapore’s population are union members – there’s a chance that you are one too if you’re reading this.

What is NTUC GIFT?

NTUC GIFT is a group term life insurance that covers for members of NTUC affiliated unions/associations. It provides coverage for death and total/partial permanent disability. Members are automatically covered if they fulfill these criteria:

  1. Are 16 years old and above and below 65 years old
  2. Have at least 6 months of continuous paid-up union/association membership.

For NTUC GIFT, there is no certificate of insurance as it is a group insurance policy and NTUC is the master policyholder.

Noteable features

#1 Extension of coverage is available after 65 years old

For members who are 65 years old and above are able to opt-in for GIFT Extension to enjoy extended coverage, if they still fulfil the membership tenure criteria. The extension requests are subjected to approval, as well as a token fee of $1-$3 per annum (but this token fee has been waived until 30 April 2022).

#2 Spouses of members are covered as well

NTUC GIFT also covers for members’ spouses against death and total/partial permanent disability, as long as they are between 16 and 65 years old and subject to members meeting the eligibility criteria. Members’ spouses are also eligible for GIFT Extension under the same eligibility criteria as the member.

#3 Union leaders are eligible for higher coverage

Union/ Association leaders are also eligible for double the coverage if they are:

  1. Affiliated to NTUC AND
  2. Registered under the Trade Unions Act or Societies Act.

Premium payment and payout

The premium for NTUC GIFT is fully covered by NTUC, with co-payment from the affiliated unions/ associations. In other words, as long as you continue paying for your NTUC membership fee, which is $117 per annum ($9 per month for Jan-Nov + $18 for Dec), you are able to enjoy this death and TPD coverage (among other benefits, of course).

Payouts for Death/TPD

NTUC GIFT Table
NTUC GIFT payout table for either deaths or TPD for member or his/her family members.

fundMyLife Reviews

With a nominal membership fee that entitles members to a multitude of benefits, NTUC GIFT serves as an extremely affordable basic life insurance for many Singaporeans.

However, there are certain things we need to take note of the policy as well. Firstly, the payout benefits is unlikely to be sufficient coverage for most people. As such, it can only serve as a short-term financial aid for the family.

Is the group insurance worth it? Let’s consider the following scenario. A union member of 10 years encounters an accident, and either dies or experiences TPD. His payout is $40,000, which is 34x of the membership fee he paid. Regular insurance plans have a 90-120x of the premiums paid for varying levels of sum assured, albeit the premiums cost more.

In addition, the policy only covers up to age 65, or age 75 if the GIFT Extension is opted. If one is to rely solely on this policy, there would be a protection gap left after 75 years old. Hence, it is essential that members boost their life protection with other policies, while NTUC GIFT can be a supplement to the other policies.

For more details, head over to NTUC GIFT Brochure to find out more.

Ask fundMyLife financial questions today!

And we have come to the end of our review for NTUC GIFT. We hope this review will help you make a better choice.

If you’re still unsure about what you need, why not head on over to fundMyLife and ask our pool of financial advisers? Alternatively, you can check out our curated pool of individual advisers and ask them questions directly.

Been doing lots of research, but not sure who to engage to take the final step? Look no further! fundMyLife connects you to credible and incredible financial advisers privately and anonymously, based on the financial planning questions that you ask. We aim to empower Singaporeans to make financial decisions confidently.

Follow us on our fundMyLife Facebook page to get exciting updates and your dose of finance knowledge! Alternatively, the Insurance Discussion SG Facebook group is a good place to discuss insurance-related topics with fellow Singaporeans.

 

fML Reviews: Great Eastern Flexi Term and Flexi Living Term

Great Eastern Flexi Term and Flexi Living Term Review

Life insurance is a form of insurance policy which pays a sum of money upon the death of the insured person. It’s usually one of the first policies that a financial adviser recommends, since it takes care of your dependents if bad things happen to you. Life insurance used to be whole-life plans, i.e. it provides life-long protection. However, in light of changing consumer demands, term insurance emerged as an increasingly popular choice. Term plans, as opposed to whole-life ones, cover you only for a fixed period of time.

In this article, fundMyLife reviews Great Eastern’s term life products – Flexi Term and Flexi Living Term and explores their features. Note: this information is accurate as of June 2018.

What is it?

Flexi Term and Flexi Living Term are regular premium term life insurance. Both Flexi Term and Flexi Living Term have coverage for death, total and permanent disability (TPD), and terminal illness. The difference is that Flexi Living Term also includes additional cover for critical illnesses.

Notable features

#1 Flexibility to convert

You have the option to convert the plan into a whole life, endowment, or even investment-linked plan.

#2 Extended TPD coverage

A common coverage limit for term insurance is either 65 or 70 years old. With extended TPD  benefit, Flexi Term and Flexi Living Term can extend your coverage beyond that, until the age of 85 or the end of the policy term.

Insurance charges

To explore the insurance charges, fundMyLife decided to start with a few key assumptions:

  1. Applicant is 25 years old
  2. Sum assured is $200,000
  3. Cover until 45/55 years old

Annual premiums at a glance

Great Eastern Flexi Term and Flexi Living Term Premiums
The annual premium table for Flexi Term and Flexi Living Term for four different young adults’ profiles.

We constructed four different profiles, varying smoking status and length of cover. At first glance, we observe that Flexi Living Term costs relatively more than Flexi Term per year for all four profiles. This should not be surprising since Flexi Living Term covers critical illnesses as well.

In general, both Flexi Term and Flexi Living Term annual premium is quite affordable at a sum assured amount of $200,000.

Flexi Term Review

The plan is flexible, in more ways than one. Firstly, with a minimum of 6 years’ term, you can hang on to it as long as you want/need. Secondly, you have to option to convert this plan to a different one later in your life. This is good for those who just started out on their careers and do not have any dependents yet. The extended TPD coverage is a nice touch as well.

In a way, Flexi Living Term is like Flexi Term with an additional critical illness rider. However, the coverage is only for regular critical illness. This means you should consider another plan if you want coverage for early critical illnesses.

Speaking of riders – there are riders for these policies. As such, you can supplement this plan with riders that protect you in other ways. For example, personal accident and disability income. However, information is sparse with these riders so you’ll have to approach a financial adviser from Great Eastern for more details.

In addition, bear in mind that Flexi Term and Flexi Living Term are non-participating policies. You won’t be getting any cash accumulation, payouts, or even surrender value. As such, you should consider investing the rest of your money if you want to grow it at some point. If your budget allows it, that is.

Ask fundMyLife financial questions today!

And we have come to the end of our review for Great Eastern Flexi Term life insurance. We hope this review will help you make a better choice. That said, it really depends on what you need.

If you’re still unsure about what you need, why not head on over to fundMyLife and ask our pool of financial advisers? Alternatively, you can check out our curated pool of individual advisers and ask them questions directly.

Been doing lots of research, but not sure who to engage to take the final step? Look no further! fundMyLife connects you to credible and incredible financial advisers privately and anonymously, based on the financial planning questions that you ask. We aim to empower Singaporeans to make financial decisions confidently.

Follow us on our fundMyLife Facebook page to get exciting updates and your dose of finance knowledge! Alternatively, the Insurance Discussion SG Facebook group is a good place to discuss insurance-related topics with fellow Singaporeans.

4 Reasons Why You May Be Declined For Life Insurance

Reasons for Declined for Life Insurance

Written by Jing Xuan

Underwriting is one of the most dreadful procedures of getting an insurance, but it’s a necessary evil to keep premiums affordable. It is the process whereby the insurer evaluates a proposed client’s risks before deciding whether to accept, decline, or amend the terms of acceptance.

#1 Pre-existing conditions

Having pre-existing health conditions means that an individual is likely to have higher mortality risks. Certain medical conditions will affect an insurer’s decision on whether to insure an individual and the premium rates offered. Hence, clients are required to declare any pre-existing health conditions before a policy is approved. If need be, the client may be required to go for a medical examination.

Pre-existing conditions may not necessarily mean a guaranteed denial of life insurance as insurers might still approve the policy with special amendments made, such as exclusions, higher premiums or reduced coverage amount. Clients with pre-existing conditions such as diabetes can look to purchase alternative plans such as AIA Diabetes Care, or plans that specifically account for pre-existing conditions.

This is in no way encouraging any potential clients to lie or hide any pre-existing health conditions as any omission of such information puts the beneficiaries at risk of having their claims denied.

#2 Hazardous occupation

Occupational choice is also one of the considerations for a life insurance policy approval. While you may be in the pink of health and at no risk of disease or death, working in a dangerous field could make insurers reluctant to approve your policy, simply because the risks associated with some jobs are deemed too high to be insured. For such occupations, even a completely competent worker with an accident-free record has no guarantee that the insurers would offer coverage. Hazardous occupations typically include highly manual and dangerous work like firefighters, oil riggers, offshore workers, etc.

Nonetheless, for high-risk industries, it is likely that the company would provide group insurance for their employees at a lower premium with less scrutiny involved, so you can utilize on the company insurance before getting a private one.

#3 High-risk lifestyles

Just as some occupations are more hazardous than others, there are also recreational activities that are considered dangerous and carry a higher risk of premature death. Activities deemed hazardous differ from one insurer to another but some of which that fall under grounds for denial include skydiving, bungee jumping and scuba diving. These activities may be a source of excitement in life but they could also be a hindrance when it comes to getting your life insurance approved.

#4 Incomplete/ inaccurate proposal forms

It is the personal responsibility of the applicant to fulfill his duty of disclosure of any relevant material information at the point of proposal. If proposal forms are incomplete or if the underwriter has identified red flags in the forms, proposals will be denied. Concealing certain critical information at proposal will also grant the insurer the right to deny beneficiaries the death benefit claims. Even if your erroneous proposal is not declined, incomplete or inaccurate information will lead to a rejection of claims when disaster strikes in the future.

Always remember, honesty is the best policy.

Conclusion

Getting your policy denied after a long process of filling up proposal forms with your agent isn’t the best news to hear. But there are some ways to reduce the chances of being declined for an insurance policy such as buying when you’re young to lock in lower premiums and get full coverage before developing any health issues later in life. If you already have existing health issues, look out for policies that are specially tailored for special conditions or a higher tolerance for common exclusions. Don’t despair if you were rejected once – try again with other insurers or discuss with your financial adviser on alternative options to pursue.

Ask fundMyLife financial questions today!

If you’re still unsure about what you need, why not head on over to fundMyLife and ask our curated pool of financial advisers? Alternatively, you can check out our curated pool of individual advisers and ask them questions directly.

Been doing lots of research, but not sure who to engage to take the final step? Look no further! fundMyLife connects you to credible and incredible financial advisers privately and anonymously, based on the financial planning questions that you ask. We aim to empower Singaporeans to make financial decisions confidently.

Follow us on our fundMyLife Facebook page to get exciting updates and your dose of finance knowledge! Alternatively, the Insurance Discussion SG Facebook group is a good place to discuss insurance-related topics with fellow Singaporeans.

 

Single With No Dependents? Here Are 6 Reasons Why You Should Still Consider Life Insurance

singles life insurance

Written by Jing Xuan

Ask a financial adviser why the need for life insurance and a typical response would be the importance of protecting your loved ones so that they would have a smoother transition during the difficult time should anything unfortunate happen to you. However, what about the single people with no dependants? Does that mean they don’t need life insurance? While it may seem pointless at first for an individual with no dependants to purchase life insurance, here are 6 reasons why fundMyLife believes otherwise.

#1 Loans/debts

For single people with no dependants, think about your debts. If you have co-signed any loans, the entire debt burden will fall upon your co-signers should you pass on. Would your co-signers be able to manage on his/her own? A life insurance policy naming your co-signer as beneficiary may provide sufficient funds to cover for your share of debt burden, or even the entire debt.

An alternative worth considering is to get a decreasing term life insurance for the loan term. Let’s say you have a $100,000 student loan on a 20-year repayment. You can consider a 20-year decreasing term life insurance to match the loan so that should anything happen to you during the loan term, the insurance would be adequate to pay off the balance. Remember a life insurance policy will protect anyone who faces financial pressure in the event of your death.

#2 Personal medical bills

If you have a heart attack or cancer, who is going to pay for your medical bills and take care of you? Being single with no dependants probably means that all the more you have to be self-reliant should anything happen to you. If your life insurance policy provides for payout under circumstances like permanent disability or critical illness (or if you have bought riders for these), you would be able to receive the sum assured in critical times like these to deal with short-term financial needs.

#3 Bereavement expenses

Let’s not forget that death itself is a costly event too. The costs of a funeral, cremation, gravesite and other expenses such as obituaries, can amount up to $10,000. A life insurance policy can help to alleviate these expenses during a difficult time. Grieving is hard enough – let’s not exacerbate the situation with a hefty bill for our relatives/ friends.

#4 Leaving a legacy

Although you might be single with no dependants, you can still leave a legacy by donating your life insurance proceeds to a non-profit organisation or to support a cause in your name. You might not have children, but you might have your favorite nieces and nephews. In the case that you have siblings and they have children, you can also name any of them as your beneficiary.

#5 Things might change

We don’t mean to sound like annoying relatives during CNY who probe about your love life (or a lack of), but life is full of surprises – you’d never know what life has in store for you. Who knows? You may meet your partner in your golden years or have a dependant in the future. Don’t wait till it’s too late when your premium gets too expensive or even become uninsurable. After all for life insurance, sooner is always better than later!

#6 Retirement planning, savings or investments

A common myth about life insurance is its purpose in simply providing death benefit for the named beneficiaries. However, life insurance can be used to meet retirement planning, savings and investment needs too. For example, annuities are a form of life insurance that provide a regular stream of income upon reaching retirement age. Annuities have death benefits as well so you can assist loved ones other than your dependants.

Not everyone’s needs are the same, so do explore the different life insurance products that can help you with financial planning such as building up cash values and providing annuity during retirement!

Been doing lots of research, but not sure who to engage to take the final step? Look no further! fundMyLife connects you to credible and incredible financial advisers privately and anonymously, based on the financial planning questions that you ask. We aim to empower Singaporeans to make financial decisions confidently.

Follow us on our fundMyLife Facebook page to get exciting updates and your dose of finance knowledge! Alternatively, the Insurance Discussion SG Facebook group is a good place to discuss insurance-related topics with fellow Singaporeans.

The fML Direct Purchase Insurance Guide

Direct Purchase Insurance Guide

In our article, we discussed the benefits and potential pitfalls of getting direct purchase insurance. Now that we know what the pros and cons are, you might be wondering where to get it next.

“Get it online”

…is the most obvious answer isn’t it? Turns out getting direct purchase insurance is not as simple as it seems. You might be able to compare direct purchase insurance on compareFIRST, but…that’s about it. That’s where we come in, to give you a heads up. While it seems counter-intuitive on the surface to write about an adviser-less product, we here at fundMyLife believe in empowering consumers so that they can make informed decisions. As such, in this article fundMyLife parses the Life Insurance Association‘s list on where to purchase this plan, and attempts to expand on the list. This list will be full of links 😀

Think of it as a pretty nifty direct purchase insurance guide. Note: this information is accurate as of May 2018.

Insurance companies

AIA Singapore

Available for online purchase: No

Location to purchase: Customer Service Center, 1 Finlayson Green, Singapore 049246

Places to get information:

  1. AIA – Direct term cover
  2. AIA – Direct whole life cover

Aviva

Available for online purchase: Yes, but only for Aviva Term Life

Location to purchase: 4 Shenton Way #01-01, SGX Centre 2, Singapore 068807

Places to get information:

  1. DIRECT – Aviva Term life
  2. DIRECT – Aviva Whole life

AXA

Available for online purchase: No

Location to purchase: Customer Centre, 8 Shenton Way, #01-21/22, AXA Tower, Singapore 068811

Places to get information:

  1. DIRECT – AXA Term Lite
  2. DIRECT – AXA Life Lite

Etiqa Insurance

Available for online purchase: Yes

Location to purchase: Customer Care Center, 16 Raffles Quay #01-04A, Hong Leong Building, Singapore 048581

Places to get information and purchase:

  1. DIRECT – Etiqa term life
  2. DIRECT – Etiqa whole life

Great Eastern Life

Available for online purchase: Yes

Location to purchase: Customer Service Counter, 1 Pickering Street, Great Eastern Centre, Singapore 048659

Plans available:

  1. DIRECT – Great Life 70
  2. DIRECT – Great Life 85
  3. DIRECT – Great 5yr Term
  4. DIRECT – Great Term (Up to age 65)
  5. DIRECT – Great Term (20 Years)

Great Eastern provides a variety of direct purchase insurance plan, and all of the information can be found on its website.

Manulife Singapore

Available for online purchase: No

Location to purchase: Client Service Centre, 51 Bras Basah Road #01-02C, Manulife Centre, Singapore 189554

Places to get information:

  1. DIRECT – ManuAssure Term
  2. DIRECT – ManuAssure Life

NTUC Income

Available for online purchase: Yes, for DIRECT – Term

Locations to purchase:

  1. Client Advisory Centre, 75 Bras Basah Road, Income Centre, Singapore 189557
  2. Ang Mo Kio Client Advisory Centre, 53 Ang Mo Kio Ave 3 #03-18/19/20/21, AMK HUB, Singapore 569933
  3. Raffles Client Advisory Centre, 16 Collyer Quay #01-05, Income at Raffles, Singapore 049318
  4. Eastpoint Client Advisory Centre, 3 Simei Street 6 #04-01/02/K7, Eastpoint Mall, Singapore 528833
  5. Tampines Client Advisory Centre, No. 2 Tampines Central 6, Income at Tampines Point #01-01, Singapore 529483
  6. Westgate Branch, 3 Gateway Drive #02-40B, Singapore 608532
  7. Woodlands Client Advisory Centre, 900 Woodlands Drive #05-06, Woodlands Civic Centre, Singapore 730900

Places to get information and purchase:

  1. DIRECT – Term
  2. DIRECT – Whole Life

Note: A little different from the other insurance companies which have only one location, NTUC has many locations where you can buy this plan from.

Prudential

Available for online purchase: No

Location to purchase: Customer Service Centre, 5 Straits View #01-18/19, Marina One The Heart, Singapore 018935

Places to get information:

  1. DIRECT – PRUprotect life
  2. DIRECT – PRUprotect term
  3. DIRECT – PRUprotect term 5

Tokio Marine Singapore

Available for online purchase: No

Location to purchase: Customer Service Centre, 20 McCallum Street #07-01, Tokio Marine Centre, Singapore 069046

Places to get information:

  1. DIRECT – TM Basic Term
  2. DIRECT – TM Basic Whole Life

HSBC Insurance

Available for online purchase: No

Location to purchase: 21 Collyer Quay #02-01, Singapore 049320

Places to get information:

  1. DIRECT – ValueTerm
  2. DIRECT – LifeProtector

Note: If you have noticed, HSBC seems like the only bank that sells direct purchase insurance? Yes and no, it’s not the bank itself. HSBC Insurance (Singapore) is a subsidiary, wholly owned by HSBC Insurance (Asia Pacific) Holdings Limited, which is in turn owned by HSBC Holdings. HSBC Holdings is the holding company of the HSBC Group, based in London. Don’t let the layer-cake structure fool you – HSBC Insurance is a certified Tier-1 insurer by MAS.

Out of the ten of the insurance companies examined (excluding FWD and SingLife), you can purchase direct purchase insurance from only four of those insurance companies. It seems like not all insurance companies offer direct purchase insurance via an online portal. In fact, if you really want to buy it you’ll have to trek down to very specific offices from each company. This may explain the low adoption rates of the plans. However, it’s still too early to say if this really reflects consumer sentiments.

Online-first companies

These companies are exclusively online, and reflect a new trend of how life insurance is sold. Advisers are also optional, which explains the competitive pricing.

FWD Insurance – www.fwd.com.sg

Singapore Life – https://singlife.com

Conclusion

We hope that our direct purchase insurance guide gave you a better idea of where to get these plans. That said, if you’re considering life insurance, why not consider asking our curated pool of financial advisers first? The financial advisers of fundMyLife were carefully curated to ensure that you’re engaging an awesome professional who won’t let you down.

Been doing lots of research, but not sure who to engage to take the final step? Look no further! fundMyLife connects you to credible and incredible financial advisers privately and anonymously, based on the financial planning questions that you ask. We aim to empower Singaporeans to make financial decisions confidently.

Follow us on our fundMyLife Facebook page to get exciting updates and your dose of finance knowledge! Alternatively, the Insurance Discussion SG Facebook group is a good place to discuss insurance-related topics with fellow Singaporeans.

Pros and Cons of Direct Purchase Insurance

Pros and cons of direct purchase insurance

As its name implies, direct purchase insurance is a kind of product that you can buy directly from insurance companies themselves. It encompasses term and whole life insurance products with total and permanent disability coverage with the optional of adding critical illness riders. What’s a site like us writing about the pros and cons direct purchase insurance, when we love our curated pool of credible and incredible financial advisers? We here at fundMyLife strongly believe that it is crucial to empower consumers with financial knowledge.

Also, it’s easier to ask questions when you’re sufficiently equipped with knowledge. Thus, in this article, fundMyLife presents the pros and cons of direct purchase insurance.

Pros

#1 It’s cheap

The most obvious advantage of direct purchase insurance is that it is cheap. Without financial advisers in the picture, it also means there is no sales commission nor processing fees. You can use those savings and put them to other places, e.g., investments, snacks, etc.

#2 No financial advisers are involved

As mentioned, it is cheap because there’s no commissions. Instead, your premiums now go directly to the insurance company. There is less chance of you encountering rogue advisers who just want to make a quick buck off you by selling high commissions products that you will not benefit from. That said, there is nothing inherently wrong about those products – there’s a right place and time for everything.

#3 Financial advisers must step up their game

It is not a direct benefit to you as a consumer. However, now that consumers can purchase their own life insurance, stakes are higher for existing and aspiring advisers. In theory, advisers now have to make sure that they do not fall behind the inevitable automation that occurs. Furthermore, these advisers will have to improve their financial planning game better in order to compete with direct purchase insurance websites like CompareFIRST and DIYInsurance.

Fortunately, we reiterate that we have those awesome experts in our list of highly curated advisers – hint, hint, hint.

Cons

#1 No financial advisers are involved

You might think us glib for repeating the same point as the previous section, but not having an adviser also puts you at a disadvantage. Firstly, you have to do a lot of research for yourself, which may or may not work out well. Advisers undergo rigorous examination and studying, which means from a knowledge perspective they might know a bit more about financial planning, and may spot things that you do not.

In addition, when you DIY your own insurance, you will also be DIY-ing your own claims if disaster strikes. It will be trying to wade through paperwork by yourself if you find yourself in trouble, and there is no one to service you. You have to contact the insurer directly, which is like a box of chocolates – you will never know what (service) you will get. At best, almost instant processing. At worst, it’s a nightmare.

#2 Sum assured

You can insure yourself for up to SG$400,000 per insurer, with a sub-limit of SG$200,000 for whole life direct purchase insurance. For example, if you bought yourself a term life DPI for SG$200,000, you can only buy an additional SG$200,000 coverage from either term life or whole life from the same insurance company. If you need more, you can only buy it more coverage from another insurer with declaration.

SG$400,000 of coverage is okay-ish for an individual, as this number arises from research in 2012 by the Life Insurance Association of Singapore. However, once you need to support a family, you will have to buy multiple products from different companies just to skirt that limit. Therein lies the limitation – you simply cannot go beyond $400,000 per company and it doesn’t make sense to buy the same kind of product from multiple companies.

#3 Limited range of products

While you can obtain a critical illness rider for your direct purchase insurance, you are unable to obtain early critical illness riders. The same argument applies in this case with respect to getting early CI vs regular CI. With technology improving over time, it’s easier to detect critical illnesses like cancer early. However, if there is no early CI protection in place, you will not benefit from early diagnosis (morbid as it sounds).

Furthermore, there are 30 critical illnesses in the rider, compared to the standard 37 critical illnesses found in critical illness plans. These 30 illnesses are the most commonly offered by insurers and account for about 98.5% of claims in Singapore, according to MoneySense FAQ. It makes sense, since several of the 7 diseases that were left out are exceeding rare, like poliomyelitis and apallic syndrome – we wrote about them here.

Conclusion

That’s all folks! We hope that this article clarified the advantages and disadvantages of purchasing your life insurance by yourself. If you’re considering direct purchase insurance due to distrust of financial advisers, why not consider the advisers of fundMyLife? The fML team spends considerable amount of time to curate a quality adviser pool, so that you receive quality advice when you ask on our platform.

If you have any more questions on life insurance, why not ask our curated pool of trusted financial advisers?

Been doing lots of research, but not sure who to engage to take the final step? Look no further! fundMyLife connects you to credible and incredible financial advisers privately and anonymously, based on the financial planning questions that you ask. We aim to empower Singaporeans to make financial decisions confidently.

Follow us on our fundMyLife Facebook page to get exciting updates and your dose of finance knowledge! Alternatively, the Insurance Discussion SG Facebook group is a good place to discuss insurance-related topics with fellow Singaporeans.

4 Things To Ask About Life Insurance

Things to ask about life insurance

Life insurance is one of the most, if not the most important plan to get as an adult. It is a plan that pays an amount to your family or dependents upon death and/or terminal illness. If getting a personal accident or health insurance is for your own sake, life insurance is bought for the sake of your loved ones. However, life insurance is quite a broad category, and we here at fundMyLife receives plenty of questions about it. As such, it would be good to write about these questions. In this article, fundMyLife talks about things to ask about life insurance.

#1 What affects my life insurance premiums?

Insurance is all about managing risks, be it from yourself or your surroundings. Unsurprisingly, age is a factor that determines your premiums since there’s a higher chance of you getting sick later in your life. Similarly, men have a statistically shorter lifespan compared to women, so premiums are higher for men too. An infamous factor for insurance premium increase – smoking status – is involved as well. There are smokers who lie about their smoking status, but it only results in an invalid claim later in their lives if it was found that they smoked. It is easy to detect smoking status via blood tests, or if cross-referenced with prior health checkups or doctor visits.

Other factors include health status as determined by your health checkup before purchasing the insurance, family history, and the job you take on as well. Personal accident plans consider your occupation as well, as different occupations have different risk classes.

#2 Do I need a medical exam?

A medical exam is almost always part of the life insurance purchase process. You need to take the medical exam to demonstrate to the insurance company that you’re not a risky customer. No-medical underwriting policies exist, but typically these policies have lower limit for sum assured to reflect the risk that the company.

On the bright side, if you undergo a medical exam you would know whether you’re health or otherwise.

#3 What if my employer/school already bought life insurance for me?

A very common question that we encounter, but the equally common answer is “no”. While your workplace offers life insurance as a perk, the payout is usually too little. Furthermore, there is the risk of losing your job at any point in time and with it, your life insurance plan. A good perk is that sometimes no medical underwriting is required, meaning even employees with health issues may benefit from group plans at the workplace.

How about students? A casual look at National University of Singapore’s group insurance plan reveals that the payout upon accidental death is only $30,000, which is too little as a normal plan. The payout other universities, polytechnics, and ITEs is similarly low as well. There is very little control you have as a student if you only subscribe to your educational institution’s group plan.

As such, it is recommended to get a private plan to supplement your existing ones.

#4 What kinds of life insurance are there?

There are two (or more, depending who you ask) kinds of life insurance, differentiated based on the term length. First is whole life insurance, which protects you over your lifetime. The second is term life insurance, as its name implies it protects you over a fixed time period. The last one is direct insurance products. It is different from the other two because direct insurance products do not involve financial advisers and are generally bought directly from insurance company branches or purchased online.

How about the pros and cons of each? There is an ongoing debate about the merits and demerits of both, with no clear winner in sight. The comparison is a whole different matter to be explore in another article, another time.

Conclusion

That’s all folks. We hope that this article shed some light on the things to ask about life insurance. We here at fundMyLife believe in educating consumers on insurance matters. However, if you have any more questions on life insurance, why not ask our curated pool of trusted financial advisers?

Been doing lots of research, but not sure who to engage to take the final step? Look no further! fundMyLife connects you to credible and incredible financial advisers privately and anonymously, based on the financial planning questions that you ask. We aim to empower Singaporeans to make financial decisions confidently.

Follow us on our fundMyLife Facebook page to get exciting updates and your dose of finance knowledge! Alternatively, the Insurance Discussion SG Facebook group is a good place to discuss insurance-related topics with fellow Singaporeans.