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  • #46





    cool slide-shows and freebies
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    Johanna,


    What has this world come to?
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    You answered your own question. Take a deep breath. Tax season is over in a few days. It’s asked and answered. Not answered and asked.

    It’s 5 pm, would a glass of wine help? Sign of burnout.
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    You're digging up my words from 2017, you scoundrel. That's as good an excuse to go home as I've ever had. And have a glass of wine. Or whatever.
    Our passion is protecting clients and others from predatory advisors. Fox & Co CPAs, Fox & Co Wealth Mgmt. 270-247-6087

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    • #47
      My wife is a dentist and we signed up for term life insurance and disability insurance through NWM during her fourth year of dental school. They definitely try to get young docs signed up when they are about to start earning and yet don't know as much. They offered solid rates on both insurances and we have been with them now for 7 years. I've been shopping around for different life and disability but NWM has continued to offer the best premiums. The reason I've been shopping? Because every single year they push WL and I'm not interested. But the closest anyone has been able to get on the term insurance is $300 more a year, so I figure listening to a WL sales pitch every year is worth $300.

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      • #48
        Originally posted by CatAlum View Post
        My wife is a dentist and we signed up for term life insurance and disability insurance through NWM during her fourth year of dental school. They definitely try to get young docs signed up when they are about to start earning and yet don't know as much. They offered solid rates on both insurances and we have been with them now for 7 years. I've been shopping around for different life and disability but NWM has continued to offer the best premiums. The reason I've been shopping? Because every single year they push WL and I'm not interested. But the closest anyone has been able to get on the term insurance is $300 more a year, so I figure listening to a WL sales pitch every year is worth $300.
        could you at least make them pitch you annually at a nice steakhouse or restaurant?

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        • #49
          My NWM financial "advisor" was a high school buddy of mine. NWM teaches their salesforce well by fleecing targets like me with a lot of sound advice. My "advisor" encouraged me to be frugal, max out my 401k at work, and get life insurance and disability insurance. Then with this facade of sound advice they take your frugal ways and tax deductions to pay for whole life and non-true own occ disability insurance.

          Also, my buddy was very cool, like a really super popular guy I grew up with that everybody loves!!! Jimmy Turner also commented that his bro in-law was also very charming, that he approved of the dude when he married his sister- that is until it led him to be denied disability insurance for the rest of his life. My point is NWM has a knack for hiring cool people, that deep down do believe they are doing good, and would be awesome people to hang out on a Saturday night.

          NWM knows that the best assassins are the ones that best conceal their identity as an assassin. And who better than a high school buddy, a dude who married your sister, or other family or friend. And ones who exhibit a qualities of sincerity and popularity that I wish I had in high school and aspire to have even now when I'm almost 40!

          It's like Reggie Jackson in the Naked Gun- NWM turns a good baseball player and role model into "I must kill, the Queen." I must sell, a whole life policy.

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          • #50
            I've had Term and disability with NWM since my days in residency. I've thought of switching but have checked pricing through the years and just didn't feel like going thru the hassle for a minimal difference.

            The whole life discussion gets old after a while but I always ignore it. Its been twenty years, and I've never purchased whole life, but my NWM guy still tries to sell it to me. I told him "If an agent has to consistently try this hard to push a product on a client, it must be really good for you and questionable good for me, so I'll never buy whole life"

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            • #51
              I had NWML tern insurance for years. When I shopped for policies it was among the cheapest from companies with top claims paying ratings. The premiums were exactly as illustrated throughout the term I held them.

              At the time, NWML also had one of the highest retention rates in the industry. People who bought policies held on to them. This reduced the turnover and saved marketing costs.

              Once an agent tried to sell me a variable life product. After some wrangling, I got them to send me the full 100+ page prospectus. It was astonishing how bad an investment it represented. Fees were astronomical and scattered all over the policy so I had to take notes and track premium dollars to see where all the money went.

              I told her I was not interested and why.
              Continued with the term policies until I no longer needed them and she never tried to sell me anything else.

              I have not been shopping for life insurance for a long time now but unless things have changed, I would look at them again for term.

              Not many people need whole life anymore. If the estate tax exclusion goes down again and there is a reason for ILITs, then it would be among the companies one should investigate for such a policy.

              since it does not use independent agents, people looking for life insurance should contact them, as well as other captive companies, to do a thorough job of shopping.

              Maybe they will have the best policy for you, maybe not. It is foolish to eliminate a potential good provider for one product because they also sell things you don't need.

              Maybe I got lucky or maybe it never occurred to me that the agent was anything other than a salesperson but I never had a bad experience with the company. The agents were no different, certainly no worse, than any other insurance salespeople.

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              • #52
                From Nerdwallet

                "Northwestern Mutual complaints and customer satisfaction


                Over three years, Northwestern Mutual has drawn significantly fewer complaints to state regulators than expected for a company of its size, according to a NerdWallet analysis of data from the National Association of Insurance Commissioners.

                Additionally, Northwestern Mutual ranks highly for customer service, according to research firm J.D. Power’s 2019 U.S. Life Insurance Study. The company scored highest overall among 24 of the largest U.S. life insurers."

                " The company has an A++ rating with AM Best and only had eight complaints in 2019 with the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC)." (Investopedia, citing NAIC data)


                In the JD Power study, the two highest ranking companies both use captive agents

                "Northwestern Mutual ranks highest among individual life insurance providers with a score of 810. State Farm (808) ranks second"
                https://www.jdpower.com/business/pre...nsurance-study

                I suspect the poor reputation of the company here is selection bias, perhaps mixed with a strong predilection for independent agents as the ONLY way to buy insurance, as opposed to considering them part of the process.

                Back when I was shopping, NWML had one of the highest customer retention rates in the industry. People who bought their policies kept them. Not consistent with high levels of customer dissatisfaction. Neither are the NAIC or JDPower results..

                Data, not anecdote.

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                • #53
                  Look at this

                  https://www.naic.org/cis_refined_res...091&REALM=PROD

                  This is the NAIC data on the complaint index for NWML. The complaint index mean is always 1.0. A company with an index of 2.0 has twice the rate of complains as the mean. A company with an index of 0.5 has half the rate of complaints.

                  NWML's index was 0.02.

                  The company had 0.872% of all life insurance premiums and 0.017% of all complaints.

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                  • #54
                    NWM reminds of Edward Jones. EJ gets a bad rap for their 5% front loaded funds yet they somehow manage to almost have a $1 trillion under management with ~7 million customers. How do these two companies manage to attract so many customers when a Boglehead or WCI follower would run?

                    IMO it's customer service. There are a significant number of people who will gladly sign up with a company if they can call the same human being whenever they want and ask him/her questions. It doesn't matter if that level of service is costing them tens or hundreds of thousands in fees over time. These folks don't care about the math and if you show them the numbers many get defensive/angry.

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                    • #55
                      Originally posted by zlandar View Post
                      How do these two companies manage to attract so many customers when a Boglehead or WCI follower would run?

                      IMO it's customer service. There are a significant number of people who will gladly sign up with a company if they can call the same human being whenever they want and ask him/her questions. It doesn't matter if that level of service is costing them tens or hundreds of thousands in fees over time. These folks don't care about the math and if you show them the numbers many get defensive/angry.
                      I think you greatly overestimate how many people are familiar with wci or Bogle heads. Most people see 5% and don’t think it’s a big number

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                      • #56
                        Customer service could be part of it. State Farm, also showing high levels of satisfaction, also has captive agents. It could be that these agents, focusing only on one company, know the products better than an independent agent can for a range of companies. Of course, there are insurance companies that sell through independent agents and have high customer satisfaction.

                        I do not agree that the policies are overpriced. For some people they might be. Cannot generalize. You have to shop your coverage to get prices. If the prices are too high, move on. If the prices are right, then do not rule out a company with data suggesting high customer satisfaction because of bad reviews on some websites.

                        When I was shopping, years ago, NWML had among the lowest net payment cost index for term life insurance. At the time, I came away thinking that the high persistence of customers was one reason for the low costs. I did not care about the individual- I have never met anyone who sold me life insurance- but the premiums were good.

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                        • #57
                          I had life and disability through NWM during residency, as I was given the agents contact by a more senior resident who was using them. I had a good experience, the agent was extremely personable and easy to get along with. I never got pitched WL but they mentioned wanting to manage my wealth once an attending.

                          The red flag was when I questioned true own occ for the disability, and one of the first things he mentioned was all the "misinformation on websites like WCI". I was an avid WCI reader by that point, but he didn't know that. I switched shortly thereafter

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                          • #58
                            In my state, the guaranty association covers only $300,000 for life insurance death benefit. That is per life, not per policy. Buying from multiple companies might diversify the risk of the insurer failing but it will not increase the amount of guaranty coverage. Beyond that, one is relying on the financial strength of the company. Those top ratings for NWML count for a product that you may buy years before you need it and for which switching companies later may be difficult or impossible.

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                            • #59
                              Originally posted by 8arclay View Post
                              I had life and disability through NWM during residency, as I was given the agents contact by a more senior resident who was using them. I had a good experience, the agent was extremely personable and easy to get along with. I never got pitched WL but they mentioned wanting to manage my wealth once an attending.

                              The red flag was when I questioned true own occ for the disability, and one of the first things he mentioned was all the "misinformation on websites like WCI". I was an avid WCI reader by that point, but he didn't know that. I switched shortly thereafter
                              (Emphasis added above.) Everyone reading this post should understand that businesses like NWM prioritize salesmanship (“extremely personable and easy to get along with”) over knowledge and client benefit. They are not fiduciaries, which means their interests come first. I would have fallen flat on my face at NWM and have gone hungry.
                              Our passion is protecting clients and others from predatory advisors. Fox & Co CPAs, Fox & Co Wealth Mgmt. 270-247-6087

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                              • #60
                                Absolutely, 100%. If I didn't know better, I would likely have gotten WL at some point too. It's easy to see how someone could get roped into crummy pro. ducts and investments and be blissfully ignorant

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