When you are shopping for a policy, it might feel like there are more life insurance companies than there are people looking for life insurance.
The truth is, there are a lot of companies, but that works to your advantage when shopping. This review of Equitrust will help you understand whether they are the right company for you.
EquiTrust Life Insurance is a relatively small company concerning the overall life insurance market, but it has some exciting products and services tailored for growth and wealth protection.
The company is managed by Guggenheim Partners, who purchased EquiTrust in 2011. As a niche insurer, their range of life insurance is far from the basic coverage offered by many carriers and will not appeal to everyone.
EquiTrust Life Insurance is one of the primary subsidiaries of the Farm Bureau Life Insurance Company. During the Great Depression, the Iowa arm of the Farm Bureau founded a mutual insurance company to guarantee insurance coverage for its members.
FBL (Farm Bureau Life) sprang into business as the Iowa Life Insurance Company in 1944 and starting offering insurance the following year. Various Farm Bureaus merged their insurance segments into FBL over the year.
After an $8.75 million IPO, FBL was listed on the New York Stock Exchange in 1996.
The distribution of single premium products with deferred annuity started in 2003 through EquiTrust. The aggressive independent marketing in place made this a success.
Marketing indexed annuities were added to the mix in 2004, and the company was sold to Guggenheim Partners in 2011.
One of the core values is offering specialist products and innovative financial solutions for a particular sub-section of the market. This is something they achieve along with adding a layer of flexibility policyholders with changing needs will appreciate.
EquiTrust Insurance Company Ratings
Despite not being the largest carrier, EquiTrust has over $14 billion in invested assets. While over 95% of these assets are investment grade, since almost half of these are in less than A-grade classes, insurer ratings reflect this.
AM Best Company rates EquiTrust as B++, and Standard & Poor’s rates them a BBB+, so this might give some consumers cause for concern.
Overall, the Comdex rating is 43, and the Better Business Bureau rates EquiTrust an A+. So, along with its surplus and solvency, ratings are more than acceptable, even if they’re not A ratings across the board many insist upon. You should use these ratings as a guide to supplement your due diligence.
EquiTrust Life Insurance Products Offered
EquiTrust’s life insurance line targets both leverage and accumulation. Whether you’re looking to use cash or to leverage cash flow into future growth, there are four primary policies to choose from:
- Wealth SureLife
- WealthMax Bonus Life
- WealthPay Life
- Wealth Horizon Life
All of these policies offer tax-free death benefits and tax-deferred cash value accumulation. As simplified issue policies, no medical exams are necessary.
EquiTrust life coverage provides practical tools for estate and legacy planning along with asset accumulation rather than being just a vehicle offering basic coverage.
As a single premium policy, you’ll need to pay the premiums for the entire duration once you’re approved. By paying in advance, EquiTrust can start growing your capital aggressively and immediately.
EquiTrust sets a rate of return, so you’ll get interest-sensitive growth without the commitment of ongoing premiums.
A death benefit is instantly leveraged, and there’s an excellent potential for long-term growth.
WealthMax Bonus Life
Similar to Wealth SureLife, with the WealthMax policy, growth is in line with the stock market rather than interest rates. You can also get multi-asset earnings that come index-linked.
All premiums paid upon approval are rewarded with a 12% bonus. This is also a single premium plan.
Offered to those aged 50 to 85, you can opt for an accelerated death benefit rider. This helps with any costs incurred from confinement in a nursing home or the development of a terminal or chronic illness.
This policy from EquiTrust offers fixed premium index life coverage.
You pay a single premium with interest linked to the stock market index that your policy is participating in.
Unlike the other single premium policies, premiums go toward an annuity, and it’s this annuity that pays out life insurance premiums.
Growth is tied to the stock market.
Wealth Horizon Life
Another single premium offering, Wealth Horizon Life provides earnings linked to the stock market along with multi-asset index-linked earnings.
Rates are reasonable, and you can expect the possibility of vigorous growth.
An advantage with Wealth Horizon Life is the ability to borrow against the policy’s cash value.
Other Products Offered
Along with burial insurance and additional insurance coverage, EquiTrust also provides retirement annuities. Given that average funeral costs often exceed $10,000, it’s important not to overlook this aspect of insurance. By taking out burial insurance with EquiTrust, you can confidently deal with final expenses without drawing upon your savings, taking out loans or, even worse, using credit cards.
Although the focus here is on life insurance, since EquiTrust’s line of products is so focused on fixed annuities, it’s worth exploring them if they meet the needs of your estate planning and future income requirements.
You get several variants with EquiTrust fixed annuities:
- Traditional Fixed Rate
Choose from payment beginning immediately or later with this annuity from EquiTrust.
You’ll also have flexibility between a policy lasting for a predetermined number of years or the remainder of your lifetime.
Reflecting the solid coverage, this immediate annuity is named the Confidence Income Plan.
As the name makes clear, the performance of this annuity is based on the way the underlying index – for example, the A&P 500 – performs. When the market is strong, you can expect outstanding returns. You’re to some degree protected against poor performance. Rather than suffering a complete loss, your account will be credited with 0% growth during a prolonged downturn. While this doesn’t translate to guaranteed growth, you can be sure your principal is protected.
You’ll find some choice regarding index annuities:
- Builder Bonus
- Market Booster
- Market Power Bonus
- Market Twelve Bonus
Certainty Select is a multi-year annuity offered by EquiTrust, and you’ll be able to lock in a highly competitive rate of interest for a number of years.
Choose from the following annuities:
Traditional Fixed Rate
The other type of annuity provided by EquiTrust is a traditional fixed rate.
As with the other options, you can choose from several time periods to suit you, and you can benefit from annual reset interest.
Colonial Penn – A top provider for burial insurance and guaranteed issue policies.
Primerica – Not a life insurance company, but a broker that helps people find term policies.
Columbus Life – Great for accelerated acceptance and online applications.
Equitrust Review Bottom Line
With all the EquiTrust products, they are not for everyone and are not ideal if you want basic coverage. If you fall into the small niche EquiTrust is targeting, you can benefit from more complex coverage and annuities offering the advantage of future growth without too much risk attached.