Types of life insurance generally fall into two categories: term life insurance and permanent life insurance.

Term life insurance

Term life insurance provides protection for a specific period of time (the term). This is often 10, 20, or 30 years. Term life insurance makes sense when you need protection for a specific amount of time–for instance until your kids’ graduate from college or your mortgage is paid off.

Term life insurance typically offers the most amount of coverage for the lowest initial premium. This makes this type of life insurance policy a good choice for those on a tighter budget.

Permanent life insurance

Permanent life insurance provides lifelong protection for as long as you pay the premiums. It also accumulates cash value on a tax-deferred basis, which you can tap into to buy a home, supplement your retirement income, cover an emergency expense, and more.

Because of these additional benefits, initial premiums are higher than what you’d pay for a term life insurance policy with the same amount of coverage.

You Might Want a Mix

Depending on your circumstances and financial goals, sometimes a combination of term and permanent insurance is the answer.

Source: Life Happen.org