Oh, Life Insurance

If you want to get a quote on life insurance, you can call me up and we would run through some preliminary information gathering. Your health status directly affects your premiums, so I do my best to quote you according to your health. It’s easier to sell a healthy person a policy than to a broken down mess, plus there is less work involved. If you think you have someone healthy, you get excited to work with them and you start building excitement and momentum to actually starting an application with someone.  There is anticipation, and it builds as you get more information that just confirms that you might earn a commission without much effort. You get so psyched just knowing you’re heading to something great, but then, like with SPIDER-MAN 3, you spend time approaching a brick wall and after you slam into it, you walk away disappointed. Here’s an exchange I have a few times a week:

THEM: “I think I need at least $500,000 in coverage.”
Me: “I can help you out with that. I will ask you a few preliminary health questions and that will give us a good idea of where the price may be for that coverage. How would you say your health is? Pretty healthy? Not any problems?”
THEM: “Oh, very healthy. Doing great.”
Me: “That’s good to hear, then this shouldn’t be a problem. Okay then, may I ask your date of birth?”
THEM: “August 11, 1961.”
Me: “Okay. Do you use any tobacco products?”
THEM: “Oh, no.”
Me: “Okay, good. Now, in the last two years, have you been under treatment for blood pressure?”
THEM: “Yes. I’ve been taking a pill for the last six years.”
Me: “Oh, well, then you’re keeping it in check? That’s going okay.”
THEM: “Yes, absolutely.”
Me: “Alright, we’ll get to the history of that in the application. Now, have you had a parent or sibling be diagnosed or pass away from cancer or heart disease before age of 60?”
THEM: “No.”
Me: “Okay, good. Now…”
THEM: “Well, my dad died when he was 58.”
Me: “Oh, what happened?”
THEM: “Heart attack, very sudden.”
Me: “…. Oh. Okay. Well, next question: Are you taking prescription medication for any reason? And we said that you are for the blood pressure….”
THEM: “And I take a pill for my diabetes.”
Me: “OH.”
THEM: “It’s a little pill.”
Me: “So of course that contributes to your high blood pressure, right?”
THEM: “Right, and the doctor said I should quit smoking to help that.”
Me: (weakly) “…. And can I ask your height an weight?”
THEM: “I’m 5’2″ and 214 pounds.”

Jesus Fucking Christ.

I will concede that if they bother to go through the application process after I give them an enormous quote, which is still subject to underwriting requirements (medical question, lab work, doctor’s info, etc), and they are willing to pay the silly-high amount, I get a bigger payday. But these folks go through it only if they actually understand they are mortal and their death will be a burden on their family and they’re willing to pay for something that benefits their family but they will never see it themselves. The odds may not be in my favor at this point.

My real concern is to get people covered, but some folks don’t understand why they can’t get $100,000 of coverage for $10 a month when they have staggeringly poor health. That sort of thing gets especially trying.

Google’s Green Earth

I love Gizmodo, and of course I like today’s article about how analysts are missing the point about Google’s announcement to invest millions into Renewable energy. Click for the full article but check out the excerpt below.

Think about it: if Google bank rolls research that develops a more efficient form of renewable energy, say, solar panels that are twice as efficient as current models, it benefits in three distinct ways. First, it saves money by powering its gigantic server farms cheaply using renewable energy. Second, it makes money by having the rights to the new technology that other energy-hungry companies will want. And third, it’ll look like the hero of the beach for spending loads of money to help save the environment and actually making a difference.

Definitely smart business. Renewable energy is going to make a lot of people a lot of money, and Google will help figure out how better ways to do it.