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Whole Life Insurance, Universal Life Or Variable Life?

You may want whole life insurance but did you know that it is only one type of permanent life insurance? Here's a brief overview of the different types to help you when shopping for a quote.

Unlike term life insurance, permanent life insurance doesn't have a set term that will end and your beneficiaries no longer get a death benefit. What's more, permanent life insurance policies can build up cash value, money that you can receive before you die, and thus are also considered a supplementary investment vehicle. The basic types of permanent life insurance are whole life insurance, universal life insurance and variable life insurance.

With whole life insurance you pay a set premium for the life of the policy. The amount of your death benefit also stays the same. The savings portion is usually a dividend.

Universal life, also known as adjustable life insurance, is a more flexible policy in that you can increase the death benefit as long as you pass a medical exam. Your cash value typically grows at money market interest rates and after awhile can be used to help offset your premium.

Variable life pays a death benefit and also accumulates cash value based on investing in stocks, bonds and mutual funds. Because of this, there is an element of risk.

Permanent life insurance usually costs more than term life insurance because of these features. After you've decided what type of insurance is best for your situation, make sure to get several comparison quotes as rates can vary from one company to another. You can get quotes online from either the life insurance companies' Web sites directly, or through a Web site that allows you to get several comparison quotes at once.

Before you buy, you'll want to thoroughly understand the policy and don't be afraid to ask your agent or the company representative questions.

To get free comparison whole life insurance quotes or learn more about whole life insurance visit Scott Lunt is a freelance writer.