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Monday, September 20th
RatesDotCA has more than 20 years of experience in the Canadian insurance industry, helping millions of consumers to make good, well-informed decisions about their coverage. The company is committed to always showing you the lowest available rate based on the information you provide: they won't "stack the deck" with the insurers and policies that would best benefit their bottom line.
Most provinces covered here
RatesDotCA offers life insurance policies from several companies, including BMO, Canada Protection Plan, Empire Life, Equitable, Foresters Financial, Humania, RBC and SSQ. However, only residents of Alberta, British Columbia, Manitoba, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Ontario, Quebec and Saskatchewan can apply for coverage through this service. That means that we were unable to get a quote for one of our two sample cases, a 25-year-old woman from Dawson (YT). And, when we entered Quebec as the province of residence for our test case 40-year-old male, we got a pop-up explaining that we would be "connected with one of [RatesDotCA's] dedicated insurance partners" in that area.
Quick quotes are easy to get
So, what life insurance policies were available for our imaginary Montreal man? We were able to select policy durations ranging from 10 years to age 100, for coverage amounts between $25,000 and $5 million. On the lowest end of the scale, we got monthly estimated premiums of $8 for a 10-year term with $25,000 in coverage; on the opposite end, we were quoted an appalling $3545/month for $5 million in coverage until age 100. To compare apples-to-apples with other life insurance services in our review, we looked specifically at a 10-year term with $100,000 in coverage and got a monthly estimate of $11. When we clicked to get the actual quotes, we were given options from 15 different insurers, with premiums between $11.52 and $15 per month. It was easy to compare any of the policies that interested us, or to continue with the one we wanted to purchase. At that point, we had to enter our name, email address and phone number and wait to be contacted by a dedicated advisor, who would review our application and get it submitted.
Double-check which service you wind up with
But, remember: at this point, we were no longer getting our quote from RatesDotCA but rather from the partner referral service they gave us when we indicated a Quebec residence. You'll want to be very sure you're comfortable with that third-party company before providing your information (though we have no reason to think that there's anything suspicious or unreliable about the partners chosen by RatesDotCA).
Good reputation, confusing paper trail
In the beginning, we were confused by the reputation of this insurance broker. For example, when we clicked on the link at the bottom of the page, where RatesDotCA proudly displays their accreditation with the Better Business Bureau, the link took us to the listing for Kanetix: a Toronto-based agency with 22 years in business and an "A+" rating, but no accreditation - and no explanation as to their affiliation with RatesDotCA. By going to the Kanetix site, we found out that RatesDotCA is the rebranded name for Kanetix and RateSuperMarket together - and then found the separate listing for the new name where yes, the BBB has given both accreditation and an "A+" rating. Looks like RatesDotCA just needs to update the BBB link at the bottom of their site!
Final price may be higher than initial quote
Looking elsewhere, this agency has decent customer feedback, averaging 4.1 stars out of 5 over more than 3200 reviews. The biggest complaint comes from customers who say that their finalized quote was much higher than the initial one they got while using the site, but that's to be expected as you work through the application process. After all, if your medical exam reveals a health condition you weren't aware of (or didn't disclose), it'll cost more to insure your life. On the other hand, we found ample praise for helpful representatives, a smooth process from quote to policy issue date, and premiums that were lower than expected.
A solid option for finding life insurance
RatesDotCA has quite a few things going well: plenty of customer feedback, easy-to-use online platform, and decent pricing on life insurance policies from many insurers. As long as you're comfortable with possibly being passed off to a third-party company, RatesDotCA isn't a bad place to compare life insurance coverage in Canada.
If you're not fortunate enough to have coverage through your employer, you're wise to consider purchasing life insurance privately. Why? The right policy can help your beneficiaries, usually your spouse and/or dependents, to cover the costs of final arrangements, replace your salary and continue to pay the bills, or even have enough money to fund future expenses like university tuition.
Even if you have a policy through your job, are you sure you have enough coverage? Although a 2019 LIMRA study showed that nearly 13 million households in Canada had life insurance coverage - an all-time high - further research demonstrated that most policies weren't enough to pay for remaining mortgage payments at the time of death.
In other words, many Canadians have life insurance but are still underinsured. For that reason, some consumers choose to purchase individual policies even though they have a group plan through their work.
How much life insurance do you need? That depends on many factors, such as your annual income, your number of dependents, your debts and your anticipated funeral expenses. But, before you decide to buy millions of dollars in coverage, you should be aware that there's a limit to the amount of insurance you can have. Known as "insurable interest" , your coverage has to match your net worth and your income: you can't buy a policy for $10 million if your net worth is $100,000 and your salary is $75,000 a year.
Plus, you'll need to evaluate how much insurance you can afford. The bigger the policy, the higher the premiums - and the older you are at the time you initiate the coverage, the more you'll pay as well. Your premiums will also be affected by the type of life insurance you choose, and in Canada there are typically only two types: term insurance, which is usually less costly but will only insure you for a predetermined number of years, and permanent life insurance, which lasts for as long as you live and often has a cash value against which you can borrow but with higher premiums to match.
Reaching out to an insurance agency online makes it easy to find out what policies are available to you, how much coverage you can get, and how much you can expect to pay in premiums. You will likely need a medical exam before your policy goes into effect, but starting the process online is a great way to get the ball rolling.
As you shop for life insurance, how can you tell which provider is the right choice? Here are several criteria to keep in mind, to guide your decision-making:
TopConsumerReviews.com has reviewed and ranked the best sources of life insurance policies in Canada. We hope this information helps you find the right coverage, to give you the peace of mind that comes from knowing your loved ones are taken care of in the event of your passing.
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