Life insurance for women: What you need to know

Two Beautiful Girls Chatting While Have Breakfast In Their Home.
Life insurance is an important part of every woman’s financial plan

Did you know that women are far behind men when it comes to owning life insurance? Research from the Life Insurance Marketing and Research Association (LIMRA) found that only 56% of women in the U.S. have active life insurance policies, roughly 10% less than their male counterparts (62% of men own life insurance). And of the women that do, their policies typically provide much less coverage than men’s, despite having the same needs.

43 percent of adult women have no life insurance.
43% of adult women have no life insurance. And among those who are insured, many are underinsured, carrying roughly a quarter of the coverage necessary for their needs. Women now comprise 57% of the U.S. workforce, according to a Bureau of Labor Statistics study, yet they carry 31% less life insurance than their male counterparts.
Why women need life insurance
While women’s life insurance coverage has increased significantly in the past decade, according to LIMRA, approximately half of women think they still need more.

What life insurance is for

The goal of life insurance is to protect your loved ones. The specific people you can name in your life insurance policy are called your beneficiaries. If you pass away while your life insurance policy is active, the death benefit that your beneficiaries would receive could help ease a number of financial burdens. That’s why no matter what they do, all women should look into their life insurance options.

The stakes are changing

According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), approximately 57% of women are in the workforce, and nearly 55% of married couples are dual-income households. Additionally, women are also increasingly the primary breadwinners for their family, and that includes significant rises in dual-income households over the past few decades.

Three things women need to know about life insurance
Life insurance doesn't have to be complicated. Understanding the basics can help you make an informed decision on the best options out there to cover your needs and protect your family. For women, the concept is no different, but there are three key factors you might want to consider.
number one
Life insurance is more affordable for women
Women tend to live longer than men and tend to get a better deal on life insurance. Because of this women typically less, on average, for life insurance policies than men. It’s true! It's possible for women to get more coverage for less.
number two
Term policies are flexible
It's straightforward and inexpensive—especially if you apply when you are younger and in good health. With term life insurance, you pay a monthly premium over a set period, often for 10, 20, or 30 years. If you pass during the term, your loved ones will receive your benefits.
number 3
It’s not just for parents and breadwinners
Women provide incredibly valuable contributions at work and home, yet they are still comparatively underinsured, both in terms of the number of women insured and the amount of coverage.
The case for coverage

Clearly, women are significant drivers for household income and finances. Now, add to that all of the other responsibilities women, especially mothers, have in the home. More often than not, women are the primary caregivers for both their children and their parents, and do much of the cooking and cleaning in married and domestic partner households. For single mothers, all of those responsibilities fall upon their shoulders.

It's a lot of work, but the value of that work is often times overlooked. That's especially true in households with a stay-at-home mother. While stay-at-home mothers aren't contributing an income from an outside place of work, the value of everything they do is significant.

For many women, that gap in life insurance coverage can have a significant impact on the family that’s left behind.

Moms would earn nearly $180,000 a year if they were paid.
A recent study found that if you calculated all of the skills, project management, and hours a stay-at-home mom puts into her job into real numbers, she would earn nearly $180,000 a year.
How women can find the right life insurance coverage
When it comes time to get life insurance, the biggest question most people have is how much should they get, and for how long?

Term length

When thinking about how long you will need coverage, the key is to think about the long term. Depending on your situation, you might need to replace your income or equivalent childcare costs, pay for debts, and cover funeral costs—or some combination of several expenses. You will need to ensure you are covered as long as you carry those responsibilities. For example, a stay-at-home mom with kids entering college might only need a 10-year policy while a young single woman right at the start of her career might opt to lock in a 30-year policy, so she's prepared for the future.

Coverage amount

Calculating coverage can seem tricky, but really you just need enough coverage to ensure your loved ones won't have to worry about additional expenses, such as your shared mortgage, car payments, or childcare. It can help to think about it in terms of how much income you’d bring in over the term length you select, in addition to any debt you would accrue over that same time period. For example, a single-mom makes $50K a year, but her mortgage costs her $10K annually for 10 years. She’s getting a 10-year term so she should multiply her income and debt by 20, giving her a coverage amount of $600K. If you want help getting a more detailed recommendation, try our debt and income calculators below.

More women are getting life insurance every day

Women must understand how important life insurance is for them. Even if you are a stay-at-home mom, a single mother, or the primary breadwinner for your household of one, it's critical to protect your loved ones. Life insurance can help.

Here are some sample monthly life insurance rates for women
Here are some sample monthly life insurance rates for women
Rates may vary based on individual factors.
Every kind of woman needs life insurance
Working women

The fact of the matter is, even if you get life insurance through your employer, it's often not enough for the coverage that you might need down the road.

Your employer-sponsored plan might be worth 1-2X your salary. However, experts recommend coverage that is approximately 10X your current salary. It’s also important to consider that your employer-sponsored life insurance plan might not travel with you if you change jobs or are between jobs. That’s where having a term life policy of your own can make sure you’re covered regardless of your job situation.

Having a policy in place will help ensure that if you pass unexpectedly, your loved ones will have some financial relief.

Stay-at-home moms or spouses

As a stay-at-home spouse, you provide a serious benefit to your family—one that would have to be paid for if you were no longer there. Your surviving spouse would need to cover costs related to child care and home management, which can certainly add up.

So, just because stay-at-home moms don't bring in outside income, it doesn't mean life insurance isn't needed.

Single moms

Single moms carry the sole responsibility of providing for and taking care of their families. That means it's critical to have life insurance, especially with young dependent children.

A term life insurance policy can give you peace of mind that, if something were to happen, your children would have the financial security to get them through.

Family caregivers

Many women live in the so-called 'sandwich generation.' These are people caring for their children as well as older parents or relatives in the form of helping to cover healthcare costs, adult daycare, or transportation.

These expenses can add up, and for the person who serves as the primary caregiver, their loss would need covering. Life insurance for caregivers can help cover some of these additional expenses without disrupting the quality of care.

Single women

Don't forget that life insurance benefits more than a spouse or children. Remember, at the very least most people have debts and funeral expenses that need to be covered. Many single women also take on the role of caretakers in their family, for an aging parent or sibling.

Woman hugging her father
Estimate calculator
Gender
Do you use nicotine products?
How is your health?
What real women customers have to say about Ethos
via Trustpilot
I am very happy to have found a great company...
I am very happy to have found a great company to help me, not with only my future security and needs but for my family's. The process was easy and I found that during these hard times they were willing to work with me.
Beasley
via Trustpilot
great customer services
great customer service, very helpful very happy customer, very knowledgable,
Julie F.
via Trustpilot
Communication was excellent!
Communication was excellent. Even when I got distracted and forgot to finalize everything, Ethos and Assurity still worked with me to get it all figured out and finished. Very well set up process from beginning to end
Rachelle R.
via Trustpilot
I am very happy to have found a great company...
I am very happy to have found a great company to help me, not with only my future security and needs but for my family's. The process was easy and I found that during these hard times they were willing to work with me.
Beasley
via Trustpilot
great customer services
great customer service, very helpful very happy customer, very knowledgable,
Julie F.
via Trustpilot
Communication was excellent!
Communication was excellent. Even when I got distracted and forgot to finalize everything, Ethos and Assurity still worked with me to get it all figured out and finished. Very well set up process from beginning to end
Rachelle R.
via Trustpilot
Easy process and great followup call...
Easy process and great followup call experience.
Misty G.
We use cookies to improve your experience on our site and collect data and personal information, all as described more fully in our privacy policy. By using our website, you agree to our use of cookies and our privacy policy.