Life insurance policies to cover burial expenses

Michael Taylor Agency is here to serve the insurance needs of the greater Columbia, SC community. If you want to make sure that your family doesn’t have to worry about your final expenses, call us today. We can help you find a policy that can help defray the cost of these expenses. 

Cover your burial expenses with a life insurance policy

Access to a death benefit can make dealing with the loss of a loved one a lot easier to deal with. There are no claims to file. Thus, the benefit is available to cover any funeral or burial costs without coming out of pocket to cover the expenses. Even if you have a significant estate with sufficient funds to cover these expenses, they may not always be readily available.

Many estates can languish in the probate process before they are settled. This means that it is up to you and your family to find the funds necessary to cover any immediate expenses related to your death. In some instances, this can be an undue burden that creates a lot of stress for someone who is already mourning the loss of a loved one.

Having a life insurance policy in place that will cover these expenses will allow your family to take care of immediate financial needs during their initial bereavement period. Fortunately, you can prepare your family for a smooth transition that takes care of their immediate needs upon your passing.

Call or stop by today!

Columbia, SC area residents can count on the folks at Michael Taylor Agency for all of their insurance needs. Call or stop by our office today if you want to make sure that your loved ones don’t have to worry about your end-of-life expenses.

Questions to ask before you decide how much life insurance you need

Life insurance is something you want to get right. You need to have the right amount and the correct type of insurance. To get to that point, you need to ask yourself some questions. Once you have the answers, talking to your local independent insurance agent can help you get the right amount. In Columbia, SC, you can count on the Michael Taylor Agency to provide you with the kind of service and customization you want. 

What do you want from your life insurance?

Are you purchasing your life insurance strictly for the death benefit?  If so, then term life insurance will provide what you need. If you want to end up with life insurance earning dividends and having a cash value you can borrow against, then whole life insurance may be more than what you have in mind. 

Who depends on your income?

Of all the things that need to be considered, who depends on you is one of the most important. If you support your aging parents, that is much different from having young children who are counting on you. 

How long will you need to supply support?  

Depending on the age of your dependents, you may need to supply support for a very long time. That means having a longer term on your term insurance. 

What is your income?

Your income affects the amount of life insurance you need to have. You are replacing your income with your dependents. You need to multiply your yearly income by the number of years you need to provide for. If you don’t need to supply all the amount they need to survive for the year, consider that. 

Contact the Michael Taylor Agency in Columbia, SC for all your life insurance needs. We are happy to give you the personalized service you deserve.


How much life insurance is enough?

When the time comes to think about life insurance, you can count on the Michael Taylor Agency in Columbia, SC  to be there to help you to get through the mounds of data and information to find out what amount is right for you. As independent insurance agents, we work for you, not one insurance company, and we can look through multiple carriers to get the right policy for your situation. 

Life insurance is not one size fits all. It needs to be customized to your personal needs and finances. Your annual income is a major determining factor in how much life insurance is enough for you. Providing for dependents who are used to having a breadwinner with a $50,000 income is different from those who survive someone who makes $150,000. 

First, ask yourself who depends on your income to survive? Do you have children? What are their ages? Does your spouse have an income separate from yours? All of these are questions you need to answer to develop an educated solution to how much life insurance is enough. 

Keep in mind that your spouse may not be able to work outside the home if you pass away. One parent raising children is much different from having two, and grief must be considered. Ensuring they have the money they need to take some recovery time will make the whole process much more manageable. 

How young are your children? If they are very young, you will need to care for them for much longer than if they are teens. Do you want to make sure they have enough money for college? Experts suggest between 7-10 years of your income is a figure to shoot for with your life insurance. 

Contact Michael Taylor Agency in Columbia, SC if you have life insurance needs and questions.


Your Health and Wellness Options with Retirement Insurance

Your Health and Wellness Options with Retirement Insurance

You may not have come across the phrase retirement insurance before. You probably do know what it is, and you’re probably pretty well versed in it if you’re of retirement age. Retirement insurance refers to retiree insurance, the name that the Medicare program uses to refer to its medical coverage.

Medicare Basics

You gain the option to sign up for retirement insurance, aka Medicare, at the age of 65 years. You can sign up for it earlier than that if you develop Lou Gehrig’s disease (amyotrophic lateral sclerosis or ALS), permanent kidney failure, or have been diagnosed with certain disabilities. This type of medical insurance provides coverage that’s free for your hospitalization costs.

You can add to your Medicare coverage if you want to do so, directly from the government or from Columbia SC’s Michael Taylor Agency. You automatically qualify for Part A coverage for hospitalization, and it remains free. You have to pay a monthly premium for Parts B, C, and/or D though. Part B covers doctors’ visits and preventative services. You could choose Part C, which includes parts A, B, and D. Part D covers your prescriptions. You might also want Medigap insurance, which covers copays, coinsurance, and deductibles.

Stop-Loss Coverage

You might still have insurance coverage from your employer after you retire. The company policy might only provide stop-loss coverage, which means the employer insurance only starts paying your out-of-pocket costs once they reach the maximum amount. Essentially, the employer-provided insurance includes a pre-determined amount of money that, once you’ve paid, the insurance policy it provides takes care of. That means that your Medicare A covers all of your hospitalizations, but you might cover all of your medical visits and your at-home care up to $10,000, the point at which your employer’s stop-loss plan triggers and pays the rest of the medical costs.

While you can only obtain Medicare A from the US government, you can obtain the other types of coverage from Michael Taylor Agency, serving Columbia, SC. Contact us today to obtain your retirement coverage.

When To Evaluate Your Life Insurance Coverage

While it’s good practice to get into the habit of reviewing your coverage routinely, every year or so, there are other times when it pays to review your needs and discuss your options with a professional. 

When You Buy a Home

Your debt load has increased. You want to ensure that your life insurance can pay off existing debts so you don’t burden your family with them after death. 

When Your Income Increases

A pay raise is often cited as a moment to review your life insurance policy. If your policy includes income protection, a review after a change of income is critical as your benefit amount and premium cost are linked to your income. 

When Your Family Expands

New family means new potential beneficiaries. It might also be worthwhile to reassess if you have enough insurance for your changing obligations. 

When You Start a Business

Not only has your income likely changed, but your debt load will also have likely increased as well. You may have additional considerations as a business owner that can impact your life insurance needs. 

When You Become the Sole Provider

Your obligations to your family increase when they are reliant on your income to maintain their existence. You may wish to discuss your situation to ensure you are carrying enough life insurance to protect your family should something happen to you. 

When You’ve Gotten Healthier

Life insurance companies use what’s called ‘premium loadings’ to account for personal risk factors. Examples of risk factors that might increase your premiums due to this practice include:

  • Smoking.
  • Having a high Body Mass Index (BMI).
  • Having a risky occupation.
  • Having underlying medical conditions. 

Serving Columbia, SC

Call or stop by the Michael Taylor Agency when you are ready to discuss your life insurance options. Our friendly agents are happy to help you understand what’s available and help you make the best choice for your needs. 

South Carolina Auto Insurance: 3 Things To Keep In Your Car for Emergencies

You never want to find yourself in a position where you are stranded, and the end isn’t in sight. Emergencies can happen at any time on the road. Not everyone wants to keep an emergency kit in their vehicle, but you can stock your car with a few essentials in the event of an emergency.

At Michael Taylor Agency, we want Columbia, SC drivers to be prepared for any problem that could arise on the road. Keep these things in your car and you will be less worried when an emergency happens.

Food and Water

If you are stranded due to a breakdown, or a problem on the road, you may not know how long you will be there for. Have some non-perishable food items in your car like some nutrition or candy bars, and some bottled water, so that you have something if you get stuck. If you have more than one person in the car with you most of the time, have enough for everybody.

Back-Up Tech and Maps

When you have an emergency on the road, you may have a phone or tech problem. Your battery may run out just from waiting for help. Have a backup plan. A prepaid phone with enough balance for a few calls can save the day in an emergency. 

If you rely on your tech for maps and navigation, have some spare paper maps in your car as your backup in the event that your tech goes out.

First Aid

Add to your first aid kit if you don’t already have one. Make sure it is a complete kit, with a few extras. It should include a seatbelt cutter, a flashlight, antiseptic, and bandages to start. Anything extra will help, but those could be lifesavers in an emergency.

Get Roadside Assistance

When you are driving in Columbia, SC, anything can happen. At Michael Taylor Agency, we can help you to update your South Carolina auto insurance policy to include roadside assistance. Call us for a quote today.

Do you need to take a medical exam to get life insurance?

Some insurance agencies or underwriters require a medical exam before they will issue an insurance policy. Most do. This exam simply confirms the information you provided in your insurance application to Michael Taylor Agency serving Columbia, SC.

Insurance companies refer to this as the paramedical exam. The insurance company pays for the medical exam. If you ask for a second exam to try for a lower insurance premium, you will need to pay for the second exam.

You can find no-exam policies, but the life insurance company uses your existing health records to determine eligibility. You must provide the company with permission to access your records, which means signing a HIPAA waiver.

Insurance Classifications

While you’re not just a number to your insurance company, you will fall into one of five categories. These categories include:

  • Preferred Plus – excellent health, family history, and height/weight ratio,
  • Preferred – Very good health with a minor health condition,
  • Standard Plus – good health and family history, but inappropriate height/weight ratio,
  • Standard – complicated family history and inappropriate height/weight ratio,
  • Substandard – complicated family history and recent, serious medical condition.

The good news is that you can change the premium you have over time. You might start in the substandard category, but as years pass and you have better health, you would move up to a different category. Perhaps you started in Standard Plus, but you lose weight healthily. Since that was the only mark against you, you would vault into the Preferred Plus category. That would reduce your premiums significantly, as well as qualify you for a variety of policies reserved for the healthiest individuals.

Contact the Michael Taylor Agency serving Columbia, SC to apply for life insurance. It only takes a simple medical exam to qualify.

Life insurance FAQs

If you don’t have a lot of questions about life insurance, you are in the minority. Life insurance is not well understood by a majority of people. You can rely on Michael Taylor Agency in Columbia, SC, your local independent agency, to have the answers you need when it comes to choosing life insurance. 

The best time to buy life insurance?

Life insurance is the most affordable when you are young and healthy, but the best time to buy life insurance is before you need it. 

Do I need to buy life insurance if I get it from my employer?

Yes, you do. There is no guarantee that you will stay with your current employer forever and you might lose your life insurance. It is better if you buy your own life insurance and then you are in control of the policy and the amount. 

Do I need life insurance if I am not married?

Whether or not you are married is not the determining factor. What is more important is if someone is dependent on you. If someone needs your income to survive, then yes, you need life insurance even if you are not married. 

Should I buy whole life or term insurance?

Both types of life insurance have a place in financial long-term planning. Whole life will stay with you for your entire life and it earns dividends. You can borrow from the cash value if the need arises. Term life insurance lasts for a set term and is more affordable. It is right for the times when you need large amounts of life insurance. You are paying strictly for the protection. When the term is over, there is no cash value. 

In Columbia, SC, Michael Taylor Agency is your local agency to contact when you have life insurance questions and needs. 

A Guide to Home Insurance—Tips for First Time Buyers

A home is one of the most significant purchases a person makes in their life. That’s why you need to do all you can to protect it. One of the ways of doing this is getting homeowner’s insurance. On top of having peace of mind that your investment is well protected, some situations might make it mandatory for you to insure your home. 

If you live in Columbia, SC, you can reach out to Michael Taylor Agency for all your home insurance needs. We have various covers suitable for different types of homes.

Common Causes of Home Losses

Some of the most common home damages include hurricanes, wildfires, tornadoes, theft, and earthquakes. When choosing insurance coverage, it’s advisable to consider the damages that mostly occur in your specific area. At Michael Taylor Agency, serving Columbia SC, we consider your location to determine the occurrences that are most likely to happen when advising you on the best cover to take. 

Does The Law Require You to Have Home Insurance?

The law doesn’t require you to have home insurance. Deciding whether to insure your home or not is a personal decision. However, if your home is on a mortgage, your lenders might make it a requirement to have insurance coverage. 

Which Factors Determine How Much You Pay for Home Insurance Coverage?

Some of the factors that determine how much you pay for insurance include the location of your home, its square footage, and the probability of natural disasters occurring. Mostly, the larger your home, the higher the amount you pay for insurance. Similarly, if your area is more prone to natural calamities, you will pay more. 

A home is expensive to build and maintain. Unfortunately, things happen when least expected. With insurance coverage, you can always be at peace knowing that your home is protected all the time.

Contact Michael Taylor Agency serving Columbia, SC to learn more about our home insurance covers. We work closely with you to determine which cover is best for your home and give you sound advice. Get started today by giving us a call.

Common Life Insurance Myths

At Michael Taylor Agency in Columbia, SC, we always have a rough time explaining to some of our clients why they should get life insurance. The decision to get a life insurance policy is usually met with confusion, hesitation, or even denial. Eventually, it is not a comfortable subject to even think or discuss. But, ask yourself, what if you die? As for matters of protecting your family with this policy, it is essential to split facts from fiction.

To begin, learn some truth or facts about common insurance myths. This step will change your mentality and assist you in making sober decisions about getting life insurance coverage.

Myth#1: If you’re young and single, you don’t require life insurance

Even without kids, your aging parents or siblings dependent on you will still need money to pay for hospital bills, debts, and other expenses. When you die, you may leave them in financial limbo. 

Besides, you don’t intend to remain single for life. Later in life, you will get married and have children who will need your financial support once you are gone. For this reason, you need life insurance today. Better yet, you will get favorable premiums when young.

Myth#2: Life insurance is for individuals only

While life insurance protects individuals with dependents and debts, this policy suits businesses, too. Proceeds from life insurance can be used to settle business loans. Besides, the proceeds can be used to cushion your employees and business partners as they think about the future course of action.

Myth#3: Life insurance is expensive

Many people overestimate the price of life insurance and end up not buying the policy. However, life insurance is affordable to almost everyone, depending on the amount and type of coverage you need. For starters, you can begin with a policy that suits your budget, and later on, you can get additional coverage.

Get life insurance today!

No matter who or where you are, it is recommendable to cover your assets and loved ones with life insurance. For further inquiries, contact Michael Taylor Agency in Columbia, SC today.