As you can see from the title, we are reviewing Royal Neighbors of America Life Insurance. Although not currently on our best final expense companies list, Royal Neighbors should always be a consideration when you are looking for permanent life insurance.
In addition to looking at the company history, we will see their official ratings according to A.M. Best and the like, the products on offer, and various other details. By the end, you should know whether or not the Royal Neighbors of America suits your needs.
2017 Review of Royal Neighbors of America
History of Royal Neighbors of America
In truth, this company can be described as ‘unique’ for a number of reasons – all of them good.
First, they formed back in 1895 which means that they have a rich history as so many insurance companies do. Unlike many insurance companies, Royal Neighbors of America were founded as a fraternal organization by eight women. Since that day, the company has gone on to support women in business and still has women leading at the very top twelve decades later. With the motto ‘insuring lives, supporting women, serving communities’, this gives you a good insight into what drives them forward.
Over the years, their reputation has grown for not only their working practices but also their superb life insurance products. In fact, they became one of the first insurance companies that offered products for women and children. Today, they boast $1 billion worth of assets and around one-fifth of this amount in excess reserves. For the amount of insurance in force, they also recently reached a new milestone – $3 billion.
It is all well and good the company having good morals and admirable ethics but what about their ratings? Ultimately, you need a company that is financially secure and good with customers so let’s take a look.
A.M. Best – If you have a read a review from us before, you will know that A.M. Best has been assessing the financial position of businesses for many years. Within life insurance, most consumers see this little grade as essential because it suggests how well they can pay any claims coming their way. If a business cannot pay its claims, you should stay as far away as possible.
For Royal Neighbors of America, this isn’t a problem at all as they have been classified as ‘A-’. As the grades fall down to ‘F’, an ‘A-‘ rating from A.M. Best is a great review and shows that Royal Neighbors is in a good financial position. All in all, this is the fourth highest rating so you will be in good hands with a policy.
BBB – Once again, the Better Business Bureau (BBB) rating is another one that we use regularly since it shows how businesses deal with complaints and how they interact with customers. As you can see, these two ratings alone tell us more than hours of research could do. Once you know that a business is secure financially and communicates with customers, you can start to look towards the products.
Luckily, the BBB has been assessing Royal Neighbors of America since just one year into their opening so we have a tremendous backlog of ratings to review. However, it is the most recent rating that tells us the most and this just so happens to be an ‘A+’. With the BBB, each business is given a rating out of 100 depending on various factors and an A+ rating suggests that they are above 97 out of 100. With this, let’s take a look at the main products on offer to see if they match your needs.
With term life, universal life, and annuities, Royal Neighbors of America offers a great variety. However, it is the whole life insurance where the company really excels so this will be the focus of our attentions today. With four different whole life policies, they are very close to offering something for everyone so keep reading and see which suits you best.
Whole Life – First up, we have their main whole life policy that lasts for a lifetime and sees the premiums remain the same throughout. Once set up, it will remain in place unless you stop paying the premiums and your family can be protected. Upon death, the beneficiary will be given the death benefit to spend on funeral costs, mortgage payments, debts, medical bills, college fees, or whatever it may be. As with most other whole life policies, this also comes with a cash value which will accumulate over time.
If you need coverage for life, this will be the easiest policy for you as the coverage starts at $25,000. Additionally, there are a number of ways to edit or enhance your policy via riders. If you haven’t heard of these before, they add more protection in case of certain scenarios.
For example, the disability waiver rider will see all your premiums waived in the event of a disability. Aside from this, you could add accelerated benefit, accidental death, cancer waiver, child rider, and flexible premium deferred annuity. Finally, the guaranteed insurability rider allows you to add extra coverage at a later date without a new medical exam. Although these riders can increase your premium, they can be incredibly helpful in the long run.
With this option, you will need to undergo a medical examination but this helps to secure lower premiums in the long-term. If you have been rejected from another company or need to avoid the medical exam, this option will not be for you but we do have some others to show.
Simplified Issue Whole Life – If you were to buy a simplified issue whole life policy, there is no medical examination as the process is simplified. Of course, you will be asked a few health questions but you have a much better chance of obtaining insurance with smaller health issues. As long as you are between the age of 50 and 85, this option will be available to you. Compared to the first policy we reviewed, there are some downsides in that the coverage only goes up to $25,000 and it could be more expensive as the insurer is getting less information from you regarding your health.
Despite this, it is suited to those who are looking for final expense insurance that allows them to avoid the medical exam. With simplified issue policies the whole application process should be a lot easier and quicker.
With a medical examination on a fully underwritten policy, you normally have to wait for an appointment, then you have to wait for the results to come through, then the insurer makes a decision. With no examination, your answers to the medical questions will be assessed and you should hear a reply much sooner. Finally, accelerated benefit is also available as a rider.
Single Premium Whole Life – Although not everyone will be able to do this, you may have a sum of money sitting around waiting to be invested. If you haven’t yet invested in yourself and family in the shape of life insurance, now is the time. With this policy, you can pay for everything upfront with a guaranteed death benefit. Whatever amount you choose for your beneficiaries, you will pay less in the lump-sum premium. Although this might sound a little strange right now, there are many benefits to buying life insurance this way; one of which is the removal of interest. When you split insurance down into monthly payments, Royal Neighbors of America will be effectively lending you insurance so interest gets put on top. If you pay in advance, this is removed and you pay less for the policy comparably.
To qualify, you must be between 45 and 80 years and you are likely to need at least $10,000 to give away for loved ones. If you want to get the payment out of the way or even leave a section of your death benefit to charity, this policy is a great way to do so. Once again, you will have the chance to add the accelerated benefit rider to your policy.
Youth Whole Life – As we saw earlier, Royal Neighbors of America were among the leaders for introducing children’s insurance to the market and they continue to offer this product today. If you are looking for protection for your child, this policy will keep the premiums low for years to come and the cash value will also build in value. Later in life, you can use the cash value as a loan for college fees or even a downpayment on a home. If you invest in your child earlier, you will make things much easier for the future and you can even add a couple of riders for extra customization.
Should I Choose Royal Neighbors of America?
As long as they match your needs for life insurance, there is no reason why you shouldn’t choose Royal Neighbors of America. Firstly, they have fantastic official ratings which means that your claim is in a position to be granted and any issues you have with the policy will get fixed quickly. After this, they offer a wide range of products depending on what you need.
Whether you need a medical exam or not, there is something for everyone. Elsewhere, the numerous riders also make your policy more customizable and this is something that not all insurers offer. If you want that extra peace of mind just in case you come down with a serious illness or are involved in an accident, the riders allow this.
On the downside, you could argue that they are missing that one product that is universally affordable. However, they can certainly meet the demands of most consumers and so provide a great place to start your search. As we always say, the search for a good life insurance policy starts with you. Before you even open a laptop and ask for quotes, you should be thinking about what you need. From this point forward, you can look deeper into what Royal Neighbors of America offer and see whether they truly offer something you need.