So what if Transamerica has been around since 1928? Who cares if the founder of Bank of America is the same guy who started this life insurance company?
Are they a good company today? That’s the only thing that matters. Right? What follows is a deep dive into Transamerica to answer three questions:
- Is Transamerica solid? Will they be there when you or family needs them?
- Are they easy to work with?
- Are they the best value for your term life insurance dollar?
Is Transamerica Solid?
There are a few ways to answer this question. Let’s first consider the how the third-party life insurance reviewers rank this company.
- A.M. Best: (A+) Superior
- Standard & Poors: (AA-) Very Strong
- Moody’s: (A1) Good
- Fitch: (AA-) Very Strong
These are impressive marks but I would never take these ratings at face value. The rankings could change over time – remember that life insurance is a very long-term proposition. But at least at this time, the rankings don’t raise any red flags.
Transamerica has been around for a very long time. They have maintained a good standing in the financial community and unless the directors wake up stupid one day, it’s reasonable to expect the company will be around in the future.
I dug a little deeper and was comforted to discover that their assets and capital surplus has been on an upswing lately. That means they are profitable and that provides some measure of stability. For cyin’ out loud…..they have $1,133 billion of insurance in force as of December 31, 2012. According to NAIC, Transamerica has more than a 3% market share of the U.S. life insurance market. That means that 3 out of 100 people who have insurance bought it from Transamerica. That’s very impressive if you ask me.
And it’s important to keep in mind that you don’t just have Transamerica when you buy Transamerica Life products. The company is owned by AEGON Companies – one of the largest financial companies on the planet. The parent company is huge but they have their fingers in lots of pies. When I looked at AEGON, I saw that Transamerica is actually doing better than they are! While AEGON isn’t in trouble, they face some headwinds like many businesses do from time to time. I don’t personally think this is a cause of concern.
Transamerica gets an A+ from the Better Business Bureau even though they aren’t currently accredited with BBB. According to the Better Business Bureau they have fewer complaints than other companies its size. They responded to all 134 complaints over the last 3 years and resolved them all satisfactorily.
Is Transamerica Solid? Yes.
Is Transamerica Easy To Work With?
I have personal experience working with this company over the past 20 years and it’s been fine. I never had any difficulties getting a hold of the right person and getting my question answered. Customer and employee reviews rate this company highly too. In fact, 38% of the employees would recommend the company to friends. That says a lot to me.
They offer 24/7 phone support but you can also get answers via email, live online chat, Facebook, Twitter or Google +. The live chat is cool because there is really a live person on the other end of the keyboard rather than a computer drone named Hal or Samantha.
They also offer some pretty neat online tools if you want to get your own quotes, understand more about how insurance works or what the best policy for you might be. They have invested a lot of money to make the insurance process as easy as possible. If you (or your family) have a death claim, they can even manage it online if they want to.
Are they easy to work with? Yes.
Are they the best value for your term life insurance dollar?
First and foremost, Transamerica is often very competitive. That’s why they own so much market share and write so much life insurance. But in addition, they offer some snazzy riders that make their insurance much more flexible. Riders are just additional provisions that give you more options. For example, Transamerica provides an accelerated benefit for terminal illness rider. If you get a policy with that rider, you can access some of the death benefit before you die in order to pay for the costs of an expensive illness. Other riders that are available through Transamerica Life Insurance include:
- Accidental Death Benefit – This pays out an additional amount if you die in an accident.
- Additional Insured Rider – This allows you to provide some life insurance for other people without them having to have their own policy.
- Child Rider – Provides life insurance coverage for your children through your policy.
- Disability Income Rider – Provides income in case you can’t work but are still alive.
- Estate Protection Rider – This provides extra coverage to pay estate taxes in case you make the mistake of including the policy in your estate.
- Final Expense Rider – Provides extra money to pay for funeral costs.
- Long-Term Care Rider – This rider covers long term care needs.
- Whole Life guaranteed Insurability Rider – This gives you the option of converting your policy into a whole life policy at standard rates without having to prove that you are insurable. This can be especially valuable if you become ill towards the end of your term policy and want to keep a policy in place even though you might no longer be able to pass the physical. With this rider, you don’t have to.
In most cases, if you want one or more of these riders, you will have to cough up additional premiums. And not every policy has each of these riders available. That’s why I want to talk with you before you make an insurance decision. Sometimes these riders can make all the difference to a family. It’s important to take everything into consideration when you buy a term life policy – not just the premium for the base policy.
Transamerica is a solid insurance company. They often offer the best coverage at the best price – but not always. They have superior customer service and they offer some very interesting riders. Those riders could be the key to your insurance program. Again, that is the main reason why it makes sense to talk to us before you make an insurance buying decision. Depending on your particular needs, you might be able to use these riders to get a lot more coverage at a very reasonable cost. I have no problem recommending Transamerica Life Insurance Company. But are they the best fit for you? Let’s find out. Give me a call today.