Whether we like to admit it or not, most of us have financial problems. But of particular interest: nearly a third (31%) said they were “very or extremely worried” about a range of financial issues.
These concerns range from saving enough money for a comfortable retirement (topping the list at 44%) to feeling stressed about paying off student debt (18%), according to the new 2023 Insurance Barometer study by Life Happens and LIMRA .
Financial Concerns for Single Moms
Digging a little deeper, the data for single moms shows that financial worries are generally higher, often in the double digits. Here are three concerns for single moms compared to the general population:
- Have money for a comfortable retirement: 58% vs. 44%
- If I die untimely, leave family in financial trouble: 51% vs. 29%
- Ability to afford college for kids: 40% vs. 22%
Still, there is something that can help you find financial peace of mind: having life insurance. In fact, 69% of life insurance owners said they felt financially secure, while 49% did not. For single mothers, 52 percent of those with life insurance felt safe compared to 30 percent of those without life insurance.
However, only two in five single mothers (41%) have life insurance, while more than half (52%) of adults have life insurance. In addition, 6 in 10 single mothers report an unmet need for life insurance, meaning they either need insurance or know they need more insurance than they currently have, representing approximately 5 million single mothers.
more than one reason to have it
The main reason single moms have life insurance (63%) is the same as the general population: to pay for funeral expenses. However, only a quarter said they could use it to make up for lost income. While everyone’s situation is unique, for single moms who are the sole source of income, the stats are troubling.
Additionally, many people are unaware that life insurance can address a host of financial concerns beyond funeral expenses and income replacement, including college costs and retirement income (listed as top concerns) through a permanent life insurance policy.
The good news is that the barriers that often prevent people, including single mothers, from getting life insurance are easy to overcome.
Tips for Single Moms
Insurance professional Barb Pietrangelo, president of Life Happens and with her own financial planning practice in Ada, Michigan, offers these tips for keeping your life insurance organized. As a single mother, she shared the following insights:
get Some Coverage – Don’t let the cost stop you. And there’s a big reason: Half of us overestimate the true cost of life insurance by a factor of three or more, according to the study. Barb says it’s okay to start small. “$20 a month can usually get you a term life insurance policy that will cover the final expenses and make sure you have some money for your kids too.”
Being completely uninsured can have serious consequences. The stories of recipients of the Life Happens Life Lessons Scholarship Program illustrate the harsh reality of what happens when children like Alston Handy lose a parent or a single mother with little or no life insurance. “These stories are heartbreaking,” Barb said, “and with a little planning, that doesn’t have to be the case.”
get permanent life insurance As long as you can afford it. “It protects your children in case you have an accident, which is the most important thing,” says Barb, “but it also builds cash value for the life of the policy, which you can later use for any purpose, such as for your children college to fund education or retirement.” She stresses that if you can’t get a permanent policy right away, buy a term policy so you can convert it to permanent coverage later.
Let life insurance take care of you. Permanent life insurance can provide you with features like long-term care as you grow older, says Barb. “For those of you who are single, here’s how I think about it: When you get old, the only person who will take care of you is the young woman you are today,” she said. Life insurance can provide life benefits to help you through your financial journey.
While you can certainly buy insurance online, don’t overlook working with an insurance professional who can tailor coverage to your needs and budget. Remember, consulting an agent about your life insurance needs won’t cost you, nor will it force you to buy anything. If you do not have a representative and would like to find one in your area, you may use the Life Happens Attorney Locator.