E39: The 3 Biggest Whole Life Insurance Myths Destroyed

In this episode, we will discuss the three biggest whole life insurance myths so you can clearly see how whole life insurance could work for you.

We try to reveal some things, common myths, common outside-the-box thinking strategies to help you. And probably the most important one to us is this thing called the Priviate Family Financing concept, how become your own banker.

And it uses this tool, whole life insurance, in a way that most everyone, including myself, including Holly, would have had no idea that whole life insurance could work this way.

One of the things that we’ve certainly found is there are a lot of myths floating around. And these are certainly prohibiting people, due to things they’ve heard in the past, from even opening up to this new concept and on how to use this tool.

Whole Life Insurance Myths Discussed:

  • Is Whole Life too expensive?
  • Rethinking how to use a policy today and secure tomorrow
  • Payment Mentality vs. Deposit Mentality
  • When and where term life insurance makes sense
  • Is the rate of return on whole life terrible?
  • On taxation
  • Do you have to be young to purchase whole life?

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Podcast transcript for episode 39: Life Insurance Myths Destroyed

Nate: In this episode, we will discuss the three biggest myths about whole life insurance so that you can clearly see how whole life insurance could work for you. She’s Holly, and she helps people find financial freedom.

Holly: He’s Nate. He makes sense out of money. This is Dollars and Nonsense. If you follow the heard, you will be slaughtered.

Nate: All right, Holly. Well, it’s definitely great to be back with everyone. And for those of you listening in, you know that Holly and I, if you listen to any of our podcasts, really, we try to reveal some things, common myths, common outside-the-box thinking strategies to help you. And probably the most important one to us is this thing called the infinite banking concept, how become your own banker. And it uses this tool, whole life insurance, in a way that most everyone, including myself, including Holly, would have had no idea that whole life insurance could work this way.

And so one of the things that we’ve certainly found is many … there are a lot of myths floating around. I would say they’re valid myths as far as, until you really learn about like we’ve learned about it, you’d have to think this way. But they are certainly prohibiting people, due to things they’ve heard in the past, from even opening up to this new concept, this new strategy on how to use this tool.

So we’ve got three myths today, Holly, to discuss with everyone. And I guess we can go ahead and get underway. What is the first myth that most people believe about whole life insurance?

Holly: The first myth, Nate, is really that whole life insurance is too expensive. And I think one of the points that you and I both want to make is the fact that in our mindset we view it as too expensive because we see a lot of information out there about buying term and investing the difference as well as, “For only $19 a month you can do this or this,” and we believe that whole life insurance is only for the wealthy. Now, you and I say a lot to our clients, “The wealthy are buying this, so you should be buying it, too.” It’s kind of the Warren Buffet saying: “If poor people would do what rich people would do, they wouldn’t be poor anymore.” Basically, the rich use the product differently, whole life insurance, than the way we’ve been taught how to use it.

So in reality, it’s really not too expensive when you look at it longterm. And we focus more on that death benefit, which is dollars that are going to pass on to our future generations, versus money that we need to live on today. So in reality, it really isn’t too expensive. It’s how it’s actually designed to work for you when you have a professional designing it so that it actually isn’t too expensive for almost anybody to afford.

Nate: Yeah. And I think one of the first problems with the expensive mentality or something like that, it all kind of spawns, Holly, from the fact that, let’s say you wanted to go buy $1 million of life insurance and you wanted to get a $1 million death benefit. If you were to buy a term insurance policy, then the premium to get that death benefit, of course really … it is cheaper than the death benefit to get a whole life insurance policy with $1 million. You know, the term insurance might be $1,000 premium to get a $1 million, where the whole life could be, like, $6,000 or something like that to get $1 million, or somewhere in that range.

So when people see this they say, “Oh, it’s too expensive.” But as you and I both know, Holly, whenever you’re doing our concept it really changes everything. Because, once again, we’re not actually even buying whole life insurance for the death benefit in the first place. We’re buying it to build as much cash value as we possibly can. So in other words, that mentality that people bring in is they’ve looked at … some agents brought them quotes or something like that, and they say, “Here’s what you can get for term. Here’s what you can get for whole life.” Clearly the term’s much cheaper. It’s totally backwards whenever you are doing it for cash. Because then you don’t really care what death benefit you get.

In other words, we’re not trying to solve when you’re doing IBC for a death benefit. It’s nice to have one, as Holly said. It’s the legacy component. It’s great. But it’s not too expensive, because we’re actually here to make money with the policy. So if you can pay premiums and make big returns, which we’ll talk about later, inside your policy, 100% tax free with no risk, would you really object to putting more money into it? It’s that payment mentality versus the deposit mentality that I think we’ll talk about soon.

Holly: Hey, maybe it’s only $1,000. When you’re younger, that’s probably true. It is only $1,000. But in reality, the older you get, the more expensive term becomes. For me, if I’m putting $1,000 away for the next 20 years, that’s $20,000 that’s left my pocket, I don’t get any return on, it’s gone. And the only way my family gets that $1 million is if I die. How exciting is that? I’ve got to give you that, but the only way to reap any of the benefit of that is to actually die. Instead of, if you had put it in a whole life policy the way we design it for you as professionals and for it to work with you, you actually have access to the cash you put in there to use from the insurance company in the form of a loan. So really, the benefit is not only do you get the death benefit, but you do, like you said, you get the cash to use.

And we’re designing it not for death benefit. We’re really, truly designing it for you to have cash to live today. Because we all need money to live, that’s just the way life works. And do you want to tie that money up in a policy that you only reap the benefit if you die? Or do you want to tie it up in a whole life policy that actually allows you the benefit to keep using your cash? So really it’s a different way of thinking. And you can say, “Hey, it’s not too expensive,” but I’m going to say, realistically, I just did a quote on a 54 year old in amazing health, $10,000 a year for $1 million of death benefit. I think he’s rather use that money and still have it than, “Hey, let me pay $10,000 for the next 10 years.” And he could only get insured for the next 10 years.

Nate: It’s like comparing apples to oranges. As we both know, term insurance, you pay a premium and then it’s gone. The only way to win is to die. Whole life insurance is actually guaranteed to pass money, and it’s guaranteed to make you money. It’s guaranteed from day one. Whenever you compare premiums, it’s like a joke to me. You can’t compare a premium of one to another where one promises to get you all the money back plus some, no matter when you die, and the other one says you can only make a claim in the first 10 years. But that is where it comes in, and that’s what clouds people’s vision whenever they want to start considering infinite banking, is they say, “I’ve heard from other people that whole life insurance is too expensive,” they would say.

And that immediately puts you at a disadvantage because, once again, when you’re doing infinite banking, when you’re trying to do this for the becoming your own banker strategy, you’re not trying to get a big death benefit. You’re actually just trying to build a big bank. We get a death benefit for fun. That’s the side benefit of the whole deal. But it’s the cash value that we’re trying to achieve. So it absolutely is not too expensive, especially if you design it correctly. It kind of depends on your definition of expensive, and it’s kind of hard to define for each person. But essentially, we all know that we want to build assets, we want to be financially free. This is a way to do so.

The expensive mentality comes from life insurance. It certainly doesn’t come from the banking idea. So whenever you really understand whole life, it’s really not actually expensive, because it’s 100% liquid, it’s guaranteed to pass on, and you’re guaranteed to use it and make profits with it. The banking strategy is what we do with all of the money that we now have available in it. That whole life insurance is too expensive kind of spawns from the idea that we’ve grown up with, trying to decide what type of life insurance to buy to cover our family, not how to get wealthy with it, but just how to cover the family.

So I actually own term insurance, Holly. I don’t know about you. I’m not hugely against it. It’s actually rather cheap to get it. And I want to be able, if I do get unhealthy, to buy more whole life in the future. So I own some. I’m not against it. But I’m buying the term for one purpose, and the whole life is for a totally different purpose. And that’s the kind of missing ingredient, I think.

Holly: And, Nate, I’m going to agree. I own term, too. And the reason I own term is not for the wealth of it, it is for the possibility, “What if something happened and I needed to buy additional insurance?” I’m exactly the same way. I bought it strictly for the fact of what if. And I use my whole life to really live everyday life. And I think, too, the other thing with the, “It’s too expensive,” we get stuck in this mindset that we have to pay X amount of dollars for the rest of our life. And I’m going to say, let’s say you think you have to pay, you know, $5,000 a year for the rest of your life. When, in reality, if it’s designed correctly you actually don’t end up paying that $5,000 for the rest of your life.

We look at that premium as a payment. And most of us instead, we really looked at it as a deposit, and we’re paying ourselves that money. We would never want to stop paying ourselves the money, so why do we? And those are just questions you guys should be asking. Do you even really know anybody as well in your life that has bought term insurance and invested the difference and become wealthy that way? Because most people say they’ll buy term and invest the difference, and they don’t.

Nate: And extra myth, you could say, is that, “I have to pay the premium forever.” Like, “You’re tell me I’ve got to deposit $5,000 until the day I die? Aren’t I going to go broke paying these premiums? How am I going to come up with $5,000 when I’m 80?” And it’s totally a misconception, as you’ve said. I mean, Holly, you and I both know that if somebody could pay a premium for five, six, seven years, they don’t really have to put in another dime the rest of their life. And it’s not that they’re required. The policy could pay for itself.

But the real truth is, as you mentioned, Holly, they probably will want to be paying the premium in. Because if I can put in $5,000, and then the next day I can borrow $8,000, how hard is it really to find $5,000? Or, if by the time I’m 80 I’m putting in $5,000 and I’m getting $50,000, is it really hard to find $5,000? I know we don’t have to send it. The policy’s fine without us sending it. But as Holly said, it’s not a payment. The money doesn’t disappear. It just goes towards building more equity in the policy. So there’s never a time where I’m going to stop moving money into it. I’m moving way more out than I’m moving in, and I like doing that. You can’t find a bank account that lets you deposit $5,000 and pull out $50,000. You know? It just doesn’t work that way.

Holly: My own grandmother was very much that mentality until she really understood what her life insurance policy did for her. She would get so upset every year. And she started paying $15,000 a year in 1979. That was a lot of money, even back then. And even today that’s still considerable for the amount of money. And once she realized what she could do with it, I mean, she passed away at age 93, but she’d still paid her last premium. And she was excited to pay that premium. In fact, she was getting upset asking my own dad why he didn’t start a bigger policy, why she didn’t have to put more than $15,000 in. Because she was getting, you know, $40,000, $50,000 back from the $15,000 she was putting in. And at any point in time, it wasn’t a problem then to write that check or put that money in, because she knew she was going to get it all back. And it came from, “Why do I have to pay this premium?” To, “Why didn’t you sell me a bigger policy back in 1979?”

Nate: I can promise you, if you’re 90 and you can get a check from Social Security or just somewhere for $20,000, move that into a policy and suddenly have $60,000 of new money available to you without taxation that you can pull out, even at 90 you wouldn’t be upset with that.

Now, do you have to send the money, as we talked about? No, five to seven years is all you need to. But, man, change the way you think. This is Dollars and Nonsense. We’re outside the box. Don’t think of it as a payment that makes you poorer once you send the check. See what it produces after you send the check. If you see that you get more money back, are you really afraid to move it? It’s just moving money like banks do, making a profit. I’d like one policy a day where I can … if it’s growing by $1,000 more than the premium, I’ll just live off $1,000 a day and try to be happy.

Holly: And that’s the key, Nate. You’ve got to see what it does for you. Very rarely can we ever put money into anything, even if it’s $1,000, and get half of it back to use. Even if you only got half, most of us wouldn’t be that upset. Because what can we put our money in and we get to still use 50% of it?

Nate: Without even hurting the underlying asset that you put it into. Holly, I think we’ve probably hit on this one quite a bit. We should probably move to do a quick break and finish up with our last two myths on whole life insurance. So here’s quick word from our sponsor, Living Wealth.

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Holly: Welcome back to Dollars and Nonsense. Today, we’re talking about the three biggest myths about whole life insurance. And we had just summarized our first point, which is that whole life insurance is too expensive. Nate, what is the second myth in regards to whole life insurance?

Nate: Don’t you guys know that the rate of return of a whole life insurance policy is terrible? Haven’t we heard that we can get better returns by investing in the stock market, or in real estate, or all this? In other words, it’s based on the rate of return of the policy. And isn’t it a lousy rate of return?

And I believe that’s a myth for a couple of reasons. It’s that banking strategy, once again, the concept, the process that we’ve learned that has freed us up in our thinking to be able to understand how this actually works. So initially, Holly, just the thought of that is a little bit skewed, because I don’t actually see my policy as an investment. Is it going to make me money? Yeah. Am I going to make profits? Absolutely. Are those taxable? No. Really great. But I don’t see it as the investment. It’s just my banking tool. So as you and I both know, if I find something that … If I love stocks, if I love real estate, whatever investment that I love, does owning my policy and putting money into my policy limit me to keep me from investing in these other things?

Holly: And the answer really is no, it doesn’t. Life insurance isn’t sold as an investment. It’s not an investment. And often, Nate, that’s the thing. We’re comparing something that is a product that you’re using or a benefit, versus an actual investment. And people want to say, “Well, oh, stocks do better and real estate will do better.” Well, that is your investment. The whole life insurance isn’t the investment. The whole life insurance is your bank, the way you need to view it.

Nate: It’s your cash cow.

Holly: Exactly.

Nate: In other words, if you want to buy a stock, you have to have money. If you want to buy real estate, you have to have money. Money’s got to come from some place to make these purchases. I’m just changing where that money’s coming from. And instead of a bank account, I’m moving it from my policy. And the wonder of this is, now I have the rate of return from whatever investment I’m getting. But since I borrowed money from my policy, I didn’t withdraw it, my policy gets to continue to earn and provide a death benefit and keep on working as if nothing changed. And that’s what’s the beautiful thing about the banking concept is, sure, the policy does produce a return, and that’s great. But it’s what owning the policy allows you to do and how you can use it to compliment everything else that you’re doing. That’s where the real magic happens. And that’s what makes this such a powerful tool. Not that whole life insurance is so great. I do believe it’s great. But even if you don’t think it’s great, at least what you can do with it, it really is pretty cool.

Holly: You touched on the point that you’re either going to borrow it from a bank, or your wealth as a cash cow. Your wealth or your money has to reside somewhere. And for me, whatever I invest in, do I want my money residing in a bank where they have complete control of that money? Or do I want it in a mutual life insurance policy where I have control of my money? And in reality, it just depends on where you want your money to reside for you to be able to invest it in whatever you want to do.

Now, I don’t do lots of investing, but when I do do it, I do loans. So, hey, I like loans and I like real estate. So those two things work really good because I can control what I want when I want to from my whole life insurance policy. And I’m not going into a bank and saying, “Can I borrow money from you?” I don’t have to do that. I don’t have to go through the exam just to say, “Hey, you qualify to borrow money,” and how difficult even that becomes sometimes, versus filing out a form to take a loan out from my policy. It’s a lot easier.

Nate: Yeah, exactly. And so many people have their money locked in IRAs and 401ks, and you’re very limited on what you can do. So as Holly said, many times to make investments outside of those tools you do have to go borrow money, maybe put your house up as collateral or some other things. And that’s nice. But you have to get approved for all that junk. It is so nice to be able to know that, guaranteed, you’re going to be making money on every deposit that you make into this policy, and that you can leverage 100% of the cash value out at any time you want for any reason, have the policy still working for you, and invest it elsewhere. That’s what’s beautiful about this.

So the rate of return issue, remember, guys, this isn’t a buy and hold strategy. Whole life insurance to us and the banking … it’s not a buy and hold. It’s a banking strategy, which is money moving and being fluid. So don’t think of it as an investment where I’ve just got to stick my money in there and let it sit. Think of what’s possible by leveraging it. Then, you can have your investments and the policy at the same time with the same money. And that’s why the myth of it having a terrible rate of return compared to other things doesn’t actually have to be even a discussion. It doesn’t inhibit you from investing in all of the things that you believe in that generate a higher rate of return.

But, you know, the policies typically, Holly, grow by 4% to 5% without taxation after fees and everything. Most people would like to have some money doing that. And then if we could leverage it to do those other things, now we get the best of both worlds.

Holly: You hit on something really key there. It’s tax-free. That rate of return to you with a life insurance policy is tax-free. In an investment, your rate of return and how it grows is not tax-free. So it’s kind of comparing apples and oranges again. Hey, this whole life insurance policy might have a terrible rate of return. Hey, but it’s tax-free, versus, hey, I wouldn’t invest it in stocks.

Nate: It’s powerful in and of itself. But remember, I don’t want people to lose sight of the possibilities of using it. Because that’s really what we’re trying to say. I level life insurance. I’ve got a lot of money going into it. I’ve got a lot of cash values. That’s not my investment. That’s just my extremely profitable bank. What I use it to do is where the magic happens.

Holly: And, Nate, just like you said, that’s not why I’m buying it. I’m not buying it as an investment tool. And that’s really the difference here, is that we compare something when it’s not an investment. It’s a product to use to be able to go buy or purchase what you want to invest in. But whole life insurance itself isn’t the investment. So when we even talk about rate of return, I don’t even look at the rate of return, I’m going to be honest, on my whole life policies, because I just know it’s secure and it’s going to do what I need it to do. I’m not worried about that on the investment side, because it’s not an investment to me. And I think that’s where we get hung up; is comparing it to something that is an investment versus what it actually is.

Nate: Rates of return in and of themselves typically are used to compare. “I have $10,000. I could invest in this and they project 10% rate of return. I could invest in this and it projects 12% rate of return.” Maybe the one has more risk, maybe this one has less risk, and you have to go through all of these things comparing the two so that you know what to do with the dollars you have available, because that $10,000 could only be in one of those investments at any given time. Right? So that’s why you have to compare the two.

However, what if you moved the money into a policy and borrowed that same $10,000 out of the policy and invested in one of them? You now have the policy and you have the investment with the same money. So that’s why rate of return to Holly and I is not a huge deal, because it’s not about that, because it’s just your cash cow. It’s your cash tool from here on out. So try to get your mind off of that and know that we can actually help you make more money on any investment you make outside the policy for the rest of your life by running the money through a policy. So the rate of return is great in the policy, but if you think you can do better, by all means, leverage it and use it, please, so you can have the best of both worlds.

We’ve done whole life insurance is too expensive, we’ve done the rate of return is not good, or not as good as other things. What’s the final myth, Holly?

Holly: The final myth, I think with whole life insurance, is that you have to be young to buy it, to purchase it, to own it. And I think all of that is not even a valid point. Yes, when you get to be a certain age it’s probably not worth the investment on your own life to purchase it. But you should have somebody in your life you could buy or purchase it with. But in reality, I’m going to use my own family, and my mom is well over the age of 68. I’m not going to tell everybody her actual age. But we just bought a new policy on her in December. Even at age 68, it still works, 69, 70. It depends on what you’re looking at to do with that. But the reality is that you don’t have to be young to purchase whole life insurance or to own it, or to have it work for you. And I think that’s one of the biggest myths, is that we focus so much on death benefit when, in reality, we’re designing this for cash and for cash value.

That’s the key. Nate, my dad says this a lot, but I’m going to pull it from him. If I went to the grocery store with $100 and bought the same groceries you did, and I’m a good 10+ years, if not 15 years older than Nate; I’m actually about 20 years older than Nate, so I’ll just put it in perspective there, and we both went to the grocery store with $100, my $100 is going to buy the same groceries that Nate’s $100 did, because that’s the cash portion. Now, the death benefit, Nate will have more death benefit, absolutely, because he is younger. Chances are he’s going to have to be paying on that life insurance policy longer than I am. And so the reality is that we get stuck on this, “You have to be young to buy it,” when we’re in the wrong mindset, because we’re only looking at death benefit. We’re actually not looking at the cash value side of life insurance.

Nate: If you run through kind of that imagery, let’s say we get a 20 year old, a 40 year old, and a 60 year old together, and everybody says they’re going to put in the same amount of money. So the 20 year old says, “I’m going to put in $10,000.” The 40 year old says, “I’m going to put in $10,000.” The 60 year old says, “I’m going to put in $10,000.” Everyone buys a policy with the exact same premium. Who do you think is going to have the biggest death benefit? The 20 year old, the 40 year old, or the 60 year old?

Well, it should be the 20 year old, right? In other words, the $10,000 of premium on the 20 year old, being way younger, is going to buy more life insurance because he’s going to be alive for 65 years, you know, in the insurance company’s eyes, whereas the 60 year old is going to have the least amount of whole life insurance. They think he’s only going to be alive for, like, 25 years. But who’s going to have the most cash value? The answer? Everyone’s going to have the same amount of cash value. That’s what Holly was saying. The cash portion is going to be the same.

So most people think that it only works for young people because they’ve been told that whole life insurance gets too expensive the older you get. Well, once again, that is death benefit focused. Yeah, if you want to buy $1 million of life insurance at age 60, you’re going to have to put more money in than if you were 20. The premium wouldn’t be as much to get that life insurance. However, if all we’re doing is we’re saying, “I don’t care what death benefit I get. I just want to get the most cash I can,” and everybody puts in the same amount of money, everyone’s going to have the same amount of cash. You don’t have to be young to do the banking concept.But even as Holly said, if you are too old, you can get there, normally around age 70, 75, things start to dwindle down. And at that point you may want to find somebody else to buy a policy on. It doesn’t have to be on you. If you have kids, if you have grandkids, if you have employees, you can find somebody else to buy a policy on if you do get to age 75, 80 and you want to do this. We’ve got clients in their 90s who just got started. They didn’t buy a policy on themselves, they bought them on their kids and their grandkids. And that’s how you can do it if you are getting up there in age, in your 70s and 80s when it may be a little bit difficult to just get a whole life policy anyway. You most likely are uninsurable for most people. But even then, if you are, just simply buy it on somebody else.

Holly: Just because you bought it on somebody else doesn’t mean that you’re not the owner. You still control that policy and you still own that policy. So you can use it, even as if it was on your own life. It’s just on the life of somebody else. And even if it’s a loved one, or a child, a grandchild or something, what a legacy you have created for them when you do graduate from Earth. So the myth of, “You have to be young to purchase whole life insurance,” is not actually true. Life insurance isn’t limited by your age if you truly understand why you’re doing it and what you’re using it for. It’s only limited by what you have allowed yourself to believe over the years and what people have told you.

Nate: I mean, the three myths, we talked about whole life insurance is too expensive, and in that we also kind of mentioned, “Do I really have to pay these premiums forever?” Both of those are myths. “Whole life insurance rate of return is terrible.” That’s kind of focusing on the wrong … it’s not even really a discussion when you understand how to use it. But even then, the return’s not that bad, guys. And then myth number three was, “You have to be young to get it. If you’re old, it’s not going to work.” All three of these are not true. If you’ve been believing them, they’ve probably been handicapping you. I encourage you to take a new look at truly what you can do with a policy and how it can help you and your family.

Holly: This has been Dollars and Nonsense. If you follow the herd, you will be slaughtered. For free resources and transcripts, please visit LivingWealth.com/E39.