Whole Life Insurance Case Study (19 Years), with Tom Suvansri
How does whole life insurance work out over the years? Today, we’re looking at a real-world case study of someone with basic whole life insurance policies that have become very productive and efficient assets when held and used long-term.
We’ll discuss how policies for self, spouse, young kids, and future grandchildren work together. In particular, we’ll see how the newest policies in Tom’s family banking system have turned a corner. Now, they’re accumulating more cash value than the cost of annual premiums. He then used these dollars to invest in cash-flowing assets that help fund the policies.
We’ll explore how you can establish policies for future grandkids to begin legacy planning. You’ll learn how to use life insurance as a foundational piece of your kid’s and grandkids’ financial lives.
If you want to see how Infinite Banking can work for your family … tune in now!
Podcast: Play in new window | Download (Duration: 53:20 — 61.0MB)
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Table of contents
How Tom Found Infinite Banking
[5:45] “The concept of infinite banking wasn’t talked about [when I started my whole life policy]…it was just a long-term savings vehicle that protects you from these bad things that could happen.”
Tom shares that when he started his policy, he didn’t even know about leveraging cash value. No one was talking about it. He was just aware that it was a suitable tool for saving money and protecting income. The knowledge about infinite banking came later.
Fortunately, Tom had the experience of those before him to draw on. His father had some universal life insurance that imploded, so they both knew to stay away from that structure of life insurance in the future.
[6:48] “It’s just one of those sad stories, but you know, that was something that stuck with me. And so we got into talking around just a permanent whole life policy, right? From a mutual insurance company. Which, I didn’t understand what that meant at the time.”
First Thoughts On Opening a Life Insurance Policy
[12:46] “I think things through pretty deeply, and it took me a while to even get to there—to accept and get a policy. And I did initially, as I got into the first year or two when there was no cash, [feel skeptical]. I saw that, and it did sort of strike me as, ‘Did I do the right thing?’ I was a little concerned.”
Tom opened this policy in 2003 and on top of still having his policy and benefitting from it, he now helps other people to implement Infinite Banking strategies. What helped him through these early years was to remind himself that it was a long-term product and that his results would not be overnight.
There’s a major mental hurdle to overcome because so many life decisions are short-term. We have to think and decide quickly, and expect to see quick results. But life insurance is a different beast. It’s something that takes time, and while you’re in the early stages it can be difficult to be patient. However, five to ten years down the line, you’ll be thanking your past self.
How Tom Feels About His Life Insurance Policy Now
[14:25] “It’s so funny, I was kind of joking with my wife about [our policies]. Because every time I get an annual statement come through saying your premium is due, some people think of it like a bill. I’ll tell you, I give it a hug because I know what it’s done for us and our families. It’s secured so much for us over these years, and what it will do in the future—like I cannot wait to contribute to it.”
Another added benefit of having a policy for 19 years is that as inflation impacts the value of a dollar, premiums actually feel like less. Premium payments are fixed payments, so inflation actually has the reverse effect on them.
The Power of Having Policies on Your Children
From Tom’s initial life insurance policy, his “portfolio” has steadily grown as his life has changed. For example, as his family grew to include his two children, he opened whole life insurance policies for them both, starting in 2009.
[29:35] “They were our fifth and sixth policies we put on the books. So we got smaller policies for them, I think their death benefit was like five hundred thousand at the time. And we just started because we said there’s savings for us, why not save for them? There could be some for college that they could use and protect them.”
Now, these policies are both at the point where the cash value is increasing by more than what Tom and his wife are putting into the account. It took some time for the policies to become this efficient, but now that they are, his family has some great options. And his children are 13 and 16, which means they’re just starting to be at the age where they might want to finance larger purchases (like school or a business).
And one day, Tom even has the option to transfer the ownership of the policies to his children. Then, they could fund the policy and manage it on their own, and they’ll already have an incredible head start.
In particular, Tom expresses how his life insurance policies have helped him to teach his children about financial concepts. For example, he and his wife have taken policy loans from his kid’s policies to invest in assets with cash flow. That cash flow is enough to pay their premiums and loans, essentially making their policies self-sustaining.
This is a great way to educate your children from an early age about IBC, leverage, and the importance of saving money. Through these policies, he has created great freedom for his family.
Tom’s Family Banking System
[[8:20] “Right now we have ten policies within our family banking world—whole life policies. Like I said, the earlier ones were kind of basic. The last four have been infinite banking-designed policies.”
These “IBC” policies are policies that have been designed specifically for early cash value growth. The base policies aren’t “bad” because they’ve still built up significant cash value for his family, and they’ve helped to protect his income and his family.
Tom also has some term policies that he hopes to convert into whole life insurance down the line.
The big picture for the Suvansri family banking system is to one day fund the grandkids, once Tom’s kids have families of their own.
[39:20] “That’s my plan today. Maybe ask me ten years later, it might be different. But my tune is, today, this is where I’m trying to start this engine for my family long-term. And I see that as a priority for me.”
Connect with Tom Suvansri
About Tom Suvansri
Tom Suvansri holds an MBA in finance from Penn State University. After working in the pharmaceutical industry for 15 years, he founded Perennial Pride.
Tom teaches his clients how banks, insurance firms, and brokerage houses make money. Then, he teaches them how to use those same strategies to build personal wealth with less risk. His work is informed by his life experiences. In particular, watching his parents, who lacked financial literacy, lose control of the wealth they worked so hard to build was a catalyst for learning.
This very personal motivation drives Tom to serve the families, professionals, and business owners he works with to help them establish control, freedom, and certainty over their finances so they can live their best and create an impact that will last for generations.
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