Why young adults should consider life insurance

If you’re starting your first job, getting ready to buy that starter home or just beginning to make strides on your career path, life insurance may be the furthest thing from your mind. But it could be just what you need to secure your financial future.

Many folks in the Millennial generation — those born between 1977 and 1995 — believe that since they’re young and healthy, they don’t need to life insurance, especially if they haven’t tied the knot or started a family. In part, that’s because they’re focusing solely on the death benefit and the amount they would need to leave to others after they’re gone.

While life insurance does provide a safety net for loved ones, there’s more to the story. It can offer benefits for people of all ages, and, depending on the type of policy you choose, can be the cornerstone of a solid financial plan.

Here are three reasons you should buy life insurance sooner than later:

It provides a versatile resource: Some policies allow you to build guaranteed cash value. Take permanent life insurance, for example. As you pay premiums, policies accumulate cash value that grows tax deferred. You can use these funds to pay for the things you want and need–like the down payment on a first home, car or education costs.

If you buy permanent life insurance while you’re young, you’ll start growing that cash value sooner. Down the road, if you don’t need the death benefit, you can use the cash value to help you live the life you want during retirement.

You can lock in your rates: How much your life insurance costs depends on the type of policy you choose, the amount of your death benefit, and your age and health when you take out a policy. Rates will always be based on your health when you made the purchase–so you don’t have to worry about future increases happening because you face a serious health issue later in life.

It’s the foundation of a solid financial plan: Permanent life insurance, and the cash value it builds, can be a central part of your financial plan. Having funds in this stable, slow-and-steady form, which aren’t subject to the ups and downs of the market can balance out riskier investments. It can give you peace of mind by offering protection for your loved ones after you’re gone, and by using it as a flexible financial asset you can use however you like and can count on for life.