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What Final Expense Insurance Agents Should Know About How Consumers Purchase Life Insurance

By Matthew King

Written On July 10, 2019

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Statistics say much about America’s view on life insurance:

  • One in five Americans who don’t have life insurance say they need coverage
  • 40 percent of Americans don’t have any form of life insurance
  • Securing a comfortable retirement remains one of the nation’s top financial concerns
  • 61 percent of people do not buy life insurance because they have other financial priorities

There is an interesting disjoint in the statistics presented above: the first half sees Americans wanting life insurance, but not having it. The second half shows that people think a comfortable retirement is a must, but they’re too busy saving for other financial priorities. Hence, they forget about investing in life insurance.

In summary:

People know that life insurance (such as final expense insurance) is important. Some of them, however, do not buy it because there are other essential things in life.


You’re probably no stranger to these types of potential clients. Many Americans are putting off buying life insurance because they tend to overestimate the price. As a result, they think it’s too expensive and “just not a priority right now.”

As an agent who sells final expense insurance, your job is to encourage people in the market to consider the financial benefits of this policy. Playing the “Your Family Will Need This” card on potential clients, however, is no longer enough.

It’s time to market insurance differently.

It Starts with Qualifying a Prospect


Pro Tip: You don’t have to market your insurance to everyone. It pays to pinpoint who will benefit from your policy.

Insurance agents have different definitions of who qualifies for final expense insurance. They ask different questions to determine which leads are qualified, which is a good marketing move. Instead of spending hours chasing clients who might never buy, have a robust qualifying process that will help you prioritize potential clients, thus saving you time along the way.

Verify a Potential Client’s Need

Just because a prospect says they already have an insurance policy, it doesn’t mean they might not need more.

Your role as an agent is to determine their exact needs and how you can fill that need. Start by qualifying their need for a final expense insurance policy by emphasizing how the plan will protect their loved ones.

There are times when a potential client will tell you why they agreed to discuss the details of their burial but are hesitant with going through the policy. Sometimes, they might need help articulating their interest. Convince them to say ‘yes’ to your offer by listing down the reasons people buy insurance policies and let them pick a reason they can relate with.

Consider the following script for Final Expense Insurance:

“Previous clients who bought insurance did so for one of three reasons:

  • They don’t have protection now and want to make sure that before they pass away, their family will be financially secure.
  • They have coverage, but it’s not enough, or they are not sure if it can cover everything their family will need.
  • They have enough coverage but want to buy more so they can leave a gift to their family, friends, or organizations.

Of the three reasons, where do you fit in? Is there anyone who will be financially affected by your passing?”

When a prospect agrees to meet up with you, use the time to find out if they already have a plan in place. A few questions can help you find out and help them better understand why they need final expense insurance.

Ask these few questions to better understand your client:

  • “Who is your beneficiary? Are they financially ready to pay for your final expenses?
  • “Are you planning a traditional burial or cremation?”
  • “Have you and your family assisted in paying for someone else’s funeral?”

Don’t Forget to Educate Your Prospects on Final Expense Insurance

Before you start presenting your final expense insurance plan options, educate your potential clients about what it is, how it can help them, and how it differs from other types of insurance policies. Walking them through the process will build value into the plans that you will offer.

It’s important to explain the difference between permanent life insurance (e.g., whole life insurance policy) and term life insurance. Mention that while term life policies expire (even before the passing of the policy owner), whole life policies will last them until they pass away. Also, let them know that the benefits never change, the rates never increase, and the plan will never cancel (as long as they pay the premium).

Final expense plan benefits often draw more people into your offers. Don’t forget to mention the following:

  1. The insurance policy builds cash value, which policyholders can tap into in case of emergencies.
  2. Death benefits pay the beneficiary tax-free and bypass probate.

Once you’ve explained everything, cap off the conversation with the reason they started considering life insurance to get them emotionally connected to the solution.

Know Their Budget for Final Expense Insurance

Money is a deal breaker for some potential clients. They consider their financial capability first before they say yes to an agent.

It’s essential to know your target market’s budget. Doing so gives you a better idea of how to approach or sell final expense plans to budget-conscious clients.

Qualify their budget using one of the following approaches:

The Top to Down Approach.

Name the highest monthly payment and wait for the potential client to react. They will probably express their concerns with the price, so keep lowering it until they feel comfortable with the amount you name. Top to Down is a helpful technique if you can read people’s reactions well, but you might run the risk of clients overestimating their ability to pay.

The Multiple Choice Approach.

Present three options based on the client’s wishes. This method is a common technique that can easily qualify a prospect’s budget.

The Direct Approach.

This straightforward approach involves simply asking potential clients what they can afford. Refrain from suggesting a price. Instead, let the client tell you what they can afford, and you can do the math from there.

Qualify their Health, Too

Some agents qualify a client’s health before their budget just in case the latter has health issues that might increase their payments or limit their coverage. Others discuss the budget before health concerns, but if you wish to be more proactive, consider your potential client’s health before you start offering solutions.  

Knowing their health status will determine whether they qualify for graded or immediate coverage — or if their application might be denied.

Learning more about your market through your potential customers is the best way to jumpstart your insurance marketing journey. Your clients, after all, are the endgame of your efforts. Once you’ve fully understood who they are, what they need, and how they can afford what they need, you can start planning for a better marketing strategy.

The Art of Selling Final Expense Insurance

Final expense insurance isn’t difficult to explain to your clients, despite the abundance of jargons (e.g., low premiums, low face amounts, and simplified underwriting). Appointments are usually short, and the products you sell are extensive.

It can be, however, challenging to segue into a presentation. After all, conversations about death can be uncomfortable. Also, building rapport with a potential client is a tricky bridge to cross. How can you close a sale?


Pro Tip: There’s more to selling insurance than just selling with facts. You have to get a little creative too.

Consider Leads Outside of Your Common Target Market

The demographics of final expense insurance plans often include low-to-middle class seniors who are 50 years old and above. Don’t limit yourself to this crowd. Remember: there are always sales opportunities with individuals under the age of 50. They might be interested in gift purchases or merely preparing for the future at an early age.

Your low-to-middle-class target market needs a final insurance plan. Today, the average funeral’s costs hover between $7,000 and $10,000. These prices include funeral home services, cemetery burial, and headstone installation. Most families don’t have the money to pay for these expenses immediately.


Pro Tip: Use a funeral planning worksheet to calculate the cost of these services with a client. Show them the total cost and offer pricing and planning options that are within their price range.

Ask the Hard Questions But Be Gentle

Honesty and transparency is the first step to building rapport with a potential client. Some clients try to make their way around the “death conversation.” This isn’t, however, the way to go since the client’s passing will be part of the discussion.

Broach the topic by addressing the elephant in the room via a more personal approach. Share with them a personal story that is relatable. Feel free to share your or a family member’s experience with final expense insurance plans. Make the conversation more enticing by emphasizing the importance of planning because it won’t just benefit them, but their family, too.

Understand Final Expense Insurance Underwriting

Underwriting varies from one insurance carrier to another. Determining which carrier will offer a more favorable underwriting for your client’s medical condition is your next step.

Final expense plans come with simplified underwriting, which refers to underwriting that requires no physical or medical exams. Policyholders with this plan receive their policies within a matter of days.

Since the underwriting is so simple, agents can almost always determine the applicant’s chances of getting approval by reviewing the final expense carrier’s medical questions. Certain conditions may disqualify your client from traditional plans (e.g., cancer within the last two years, stroke or heart attack within the year, congestive heart failure, AIDS/HIV, and more).


Pro Tip: Be prepared by having guaranteed issue products available for potential clients with these conditions.

Perfect Your Sales Pitch

Once you have reviewed a potential client’s financial capabilities and health condition, completed the application, and determine the type of coverage they need, cap off the pitch by offering payment options that meet their budget.

Close the sale by offering them coverage and monthly payment options. Offer them different death benefit amounts with the corresponding payment terms. Doing so will demonstrate to your potential client purchasing capabilities of a small premium difference.

The Bottom Line: Tie It Back to the WHY

If you can effectively qualify a potential client by establishing why they need the policy in the first place, how much they can afford, and if their health condition is acceptable to the insurance company, you will definitely close a sale.

But to close MORE deals, practice creativity and always tie it back to the reason they were interested in insurance in the first place.

Also, prove to them that their interest is not a wasted effort. Make sure they choose your services by partnering with an insurance field marketing organization that offers competitive insurance carriers in your area..

Partner with TR King Insurance Marketing.

Work with A Trusted Final Expense Insurance Partner

It doesn’t matter where you are in your insurance career journey; count on us to help you succeed. Easily exceed the expectations of your clients with our support, training, and customer service.

Our motto is simple: “Do the right thing simply because it’s the right thing to do.” Rest assured, when you partner with us, we will do the right thing by creating action plans that align with your business goals.

When you partner with us, you will benefit from the following:

  • Access to online training programs that will advance your product knowledge. Feel more confident in front of clients by taking advantage of our final expense 101 training program.
  • High commissions; high enough so you can build and grow your own independent business.
  • Simple online contracting that cuts down on hefty amounts of paperwork and saves you more time. Take advantage of our SureLC Software by speeding up your contract preparation process.
  • Gain access to high-level and top-rated insurance products. Our selection includes different types of insurance from a variety of carriers (e.g., Medicare Advantage Insurance, Medicare .
  • Work with multiple carriers instead of a single carrier.

Give your potential clients more reasons to choose you instead of other insurance agents. Do so by having the right tools and support. Trust TR King Insurance Marketing to provide you with both.

Get in touch with us today to learn more.

Key Takeaways In This Article

  • Always start the qualifying process early and verify your prospects needs.
  • Ask questions and LISTEN to understand your client and WHY they need insurance.
  • Take every opportunity to educate your client as it helps you build rapport.
  • Know your client's budget, don't oversell them, but don't undersell them either.
  • Look outside your comfort zone, practice your sales pitch, and always go back to the WHY factor.

Over to You

We'd love to hear your thoughts in the comments below on:

  1. How do YOU overcome customers that believe it will be too expensive?
  2. Have you read any relevant studies that you would like to share with us?
  3. How is Final Expense different from Term Marketing for YOU?

If you have any questions, please leave a comment below. We will carefully read each one of them. Happy Selling!

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Matthew King

Matthew King is a co-owner of TR King Insurance Marketing. When he's not creating processes, content, developing training, and implementing digital marketing strategies, he likes to immerse in gaming with his wife and friends.

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