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How to Buy Life Insurance

October 8, 2010
by Scott Wescott

How to Buy Life Insurance

Life’s big changes — getting married, having kids, even going off to schoo l— give us lots to think about. The good news is that when it comes to buying life insurance that’s right for your stage of life, your ERIE Agent can make a seemingly complicated process easier. The first step is helping you think about it.

“People don’t think twice about insuring their home and their car, but it’s amazing that so many don’t think about their life in the same way,” says Jeff Azzato of St. Marys Insurance Agency in St. Marys, Pa.

“The bottom line is this: if you love someone, you need life insurance.”

When you’re ready to purchase life insurance, ERIE Agents can help by explaining the differences between term and whole life insurance. They can also assess your overall financial and life situation to help you determine your specific needs.

“As Agents, we’re here to provide individual contact that can make buying life insurance easier,” says Jeff. “We can explain the process, answer questions and help you understand the details of quotes.”
Part of that process is undergoing a physical, Jeff notes.

“Prior to issuing a policy, insurance companies need to evaluate medical history and physical exam and lab results to determine if there are any conditions that could shorten your life,” explains Mike Plazony, vice president and manager, Life Underwriting and Product Administration for Erie Family Life. “This helps us determine the right cost for each person applying for life insurance.”

If this is the part that’s scary for you, there are simple steps (see below) you can take to help make sure that the test results are not negatively affected.

Simple steps


These three easy tips can help you qualify for the best rates.

Tread lightly: Stay out of the gym for at least 24 hours prior to the exam, as a strenuous workout can lead to increased liver function — a red flag for certain ailments and conditions. If you must work out, keep it nice and easy.

Kick the coffee: Tea, coffee, soda — anything with caffeine — can increase blood pressure.

Pass on the salt: Limit salt intake and high cholesterol foods for at least 24 hours prior to your exam to avoid a negative impact on blood pressure or cholesterol results.

An ERIE Agent can also add to your savings by offering a life multi-policy discount. This discount helps you save money on your homeowners insurance when you have a qualifying Erie Family Life* policy.

“Taking care of your life insurance needs gives you one less thing to worry about,” ERIE Agent Jeff Azzato says. “And working with an ERIE Agent will make the process as easy as possible. Give your Agent a call to talk it over.”

*Erie Family Life insurance not available in New York.


Scott Westcott is an award-winning journalist and freelance writer whose work has appeared in Parents, Inc., and Woman’s Day. He resides in Erie, Pa.
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