RICHMOND, Va., Aug. 31, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Taking care of the American family now goes beyond bringing home a paycheck and providing a safe place to live. It requires planning and making sure financial needs will be met in the event of an unplanned illness or death. Many Americans find themselves at odds when a life event upsets the family dynamic. Genworth's 2011 LifeJacket(SM) Study pointed out weaknesses in consumer behavior and recognized that many are underinsured or uninsured.
"Research shows that most long-term financial decisions are heavily tied to emotions and life events, like marriage, a birth, or a job change, with marriage being the most common trigger," said Anthony Vossenberg, senior vice president of life and annuities product sales at Genworth. "Unless confronted with one of these events, consumers tend to ignore the possibilities and delay important financial purchases; it's human nature to think about today rather than planning for the future."
Vossenberg added, "We offer three simple personal finance basics that can get people thinking about how to develop a well-balanced plan for today and tomorrow."
Look at the Big Picture
Whether there are two income earners or one, take into account the impact of losing that salary. How would that affect the ability to pay monthly expenses, save for college, retire, and cover the high cost of aging? Remember, life insurance is affordable and a must-have for families with minor children.
This is especially true for single parents. The Genworth LifeJacket Study found that 69 percent of single parents with children living in the household are uninsured, constituting the highest percentage of uninsured Americans. Unfortunately, these children of the uninsured may be left with few or no options when faced with an unexpected death. To get a better understanding of the coverage needed and to demystify the purchasing process, visit Genworth's Life Insurance Calculator at genworth.com/life.
Here is an alarming fact – 26 percent of consumers said that they had not reviewed their coverage since the day they purchased their policy. Only 29 percent of policyholders interviewed for the LifeJacket Study revealed they do review their policy annually. The remaining 45 percent if insured said they review their policy anywhere between two to 10 years.
By not reviewing their policies and keeping in step with life changes – a birth, death, purchase of a home, or a job change, any of which would require changes to insurance coverage, many may be underinsured or uninsured, relying on a policy that may be decades old and virtually ineffective.
Ask for Help
Beyond life insurance comes the reality of saving for college, retirement and the high cost of aging. Plan time to meet with an agent or financial advisor and discuss the here and now and what lies ahead. If you don't have one, ask a friend or a relative for a recommendation. The majority of Americans surveyed by Genworth ranked referral as the best way to find one. A trusted advisor will help put things in perspective and develop a plan that includes saving for the future.
For more information and to get started on the path to a smart financial future, visit genworth.com.
About Genworth Financial
Genworth Financial, Inc. (NYSE: GNW) is a leading Fortune 500 insurance holding company dedicated to helping people secure their financial lives, families and futures. Genworth has leadership positions in offerings that assist consumers in protecting themselves, investing for the future and planning for retirement -- including life insurance, long term care insurance, financial protection coverages, and independent advisor-based wealth management -- and mortgage insurance that helps consumers achieve home ownership while assisting lenders in managing their risk and capital.
Genworth has approximately 6,500 employees and operates through three divisions: Insurance and Wealth Management, which includes U.S. Life Insurance, Wealth Management, and International Protection segments; Mortgage Insurance, which includes U.S. and International Mortgage Insurance segments; and the Corporate and Runoff division. Its products and services are offered through financial intermediaries, advisors, independent distributors and sales specialists. Genworth Financial, Inc., which traces its roots back to 1871, became a public company in 2004 and is headquartered in Richmond, Virginia. For more information, visit genworth.com. From time to time, Genworth Financial, Inc. releases important information via postings on its corporate website. Accordingly, investors and other interested parties are encouraged to enroll to receive automatic email alerts and Really Simple Syndication (RSS) feeds regarding new postings. Enrollment information is found under the "Investors" section of genworth.com.
SOURCE Genworth Financial, Inc.