Has anyone bought the China Taiping i-secure whole life insurance? What are your thoughts on it compared to other whole life policies? - Seedly
 

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AVIVA MyWholeLifePlan

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China Taiping

Asked by Isabel Wong

Asked on 08 Dec 2019

Has anyone bought the China Taiping i-secure whole life insurance? What are your thoughts on it compared to other whole life policies?

I've recently got some quotes for whole life plans + eci and I've narrowed it down to 3:

  • Manulife Life ready plus

  • China Taiping i-secure

  • Aviva my whole life plan

China Taiping offers the most value and fits what I currently want but I'm a bit worried because they are new to the whole life market. Will this affect the claims process or is there any risk you can forsee?

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Hi Isabel,

Your policies are protected the policy owner's protection scheme, so I would say you don't have to worry about the insurer not honouring their commitment.

Yes, they are new to the WL market, but certain not new to insurance. And insurance companies re-insure the risk with bigger companies known as reinsurers, so I would say your policy will be safe. What's untested is their track record of their Participating fund. They are pretty swamped at the moment due to this new plan basically causing disruption in the whole life market.

The claims process will be similar regardless of company. Upon submission of supporting documents for a claim, the insurer will do their own checks and request for more information if required, if not, they will make the payment to you.

For insurers who have left the Singapore market (it does happen), the policies will continue to be in force and handled by another insurer. For example, John Hancock left Singapore and Manulife took over to continue honouring the contract. Remember, this is a contract between two parties, so it has to be honoured.

Regarding BTIR on Term with ECI vs WL ECI, if you'd be able to provide your profile, I can do some sample dataset for you. ECI on term is horribly expensive, which is why sometimes, a Whole Life actually makes sense. But I'll let the numbers speak for themselves.

Note that you should be comparing Manulife against CTP, because the payout structure of the plan is similar (i.e. higher of the bonuses + SA or multiplier amount). Aviva pays out bonuses on top of the multiplier amount. Some of my clients take Aviva due to this (and a very minimal premium difference)

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Hey Isabel, firstly great job narrowing it down to these 3 policies. They are the only ones I end up recommending as well.

However, between the 3, my clients and I usually end up choosing Aviva for one very important reason.

Cash value is paid out during the multiplier period. They're the only insurer to do this in Singapore.

So while for example you may buy a 100k X 2 WL policy from all 3 insurers. Between the age now and 70, Manulife and CTPIS will only pay 200k until the cash value surpasses the 100k multiplier.

Aviva will pay 100k + 100k + any cash value on the policy. So 30 years in, the cash value could be another 75k for example, so you'll be paid out 275k while the others still only pay you 200k, effectively "makan-ing" your cash value.

Due to this main reason, Aviva is the one I almost always end up recommending and applying for.

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NTUC whole life (i can't remember it being called vivolife or something like that) and TM Asia are still the 2 strong insurers that i really like and recommend to my friends because they return most of the bonus to customes rather than shareholders.​​​

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Isabel Wong
Isabel Wong
Level 6. Master
Answered on 09 Dec 2019

Thanks for the replies. I understand that some may recommend BTIR and I do invest in ETFs and stocks on my own. I did consider term over whole life but for ECI policies it isn't really cheaper to go for term (unless I can get a return of around 10% which I am still struggling to do so now or redeem the policy super early). If anyone out there with a similar profile as me has done an analysis of term and life eci policies across companies it will be very much appreciated.

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Pang Zhe Liang
Pang Zhe Liang

10 Dec 2019

Depending on your profile, it may be possible to consider the option of term ECI + investment. However, we will need to determine your risk appetite to adjust the investment portfolio. Additionally, we will need to account for the long-term affordability of the term plan, e.g. in the event of crisis, who pays for the coverage? If you are open to hearing how I plan for my clients for either option, send me a coffee invite: https://www.work.pzl.sg/#coffee Here is everything about me and what I do best.
Hwee Kian
Hwee Kian
Level 7. Grand Master
Answered on 08 Dec 2019

I think for the plan which you mentioned, I'm not exactly sure about the details of it (the devil could be in the details), but what I believe is that it is a relatively new Life insurance Brand in Singapore, reputation wise may be a challenge to sell. Not only that, when i try to find out reviews on google, there's not many good reviews as there are people commenting about customer service as underperforming. So it really depends if you're looking from a price affordability point of view or other tangible/intangibles such as customer service for claims etc.

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Choon Yuan Chan
Choon Yuan Chan
Top Contributor

Top Contributor (Dec)

Level 9. God of Wisdom
Answered on 09 Dec 2019

It depends on your needs and your ability to invest by yourself or not.

If you can't invest and have proper discipline to do monthly or quarterly investment into sti etf, then just do whole life insurance. Myself i prefer buy term invest the rest method

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It depends on your needs and the reasons why you are choosing a traditional whole life insurance over other types of life insurance policies. The first thing and most important thing to do is always to have a comprehensive insurance portfolio summary. Through this process, it allows you to fully understand your current insurance policies and to know if the new policy complements with the existing insurance policies and your long-term needs. Here are the key reasons: https://www.blog.pzl.sg/why-every-client-needs-an-insurance-policy-summary/

For China Taiping i-Secure, it is a participating whole life policy. Accordingly, part of your money is placed into the policy's participating fund. At this point, it will be important to understand how a participating fund works and its track record.

What is a Participating Fund: https://www.blog.pzl.sg/what-is-a-participating-fund-singapore/

Unfortunately, a quick search on Google did not return any results for its participating fund. Therefore, I am definitely as worried as you at this point.

According to the product summary, the participating fund was set up in December 2018. With zero track record, you will have to make a sound judgement here, especially on the expense ratio (cost to maintain a new fund).

Smoothing of bonus will not work as well since you are the first batch of clients. As a result, even if the fund exceed expectation, it is unlikely to be rewarded in like manner.

How Smoothing of Bonus work: https://www.blog.pzl.sg/smoothing-of-bonuses-singapore/

Having mentioned that, the only redemption here is part of your money is protected by SDIC up to the agreed limit.

For the Death benefit, Total & Permanent Disability benefit, the definition are pretty standard across the industry. Hence, there is not too much of a concern here.

If you opted for Critical Illness coverage, I will suggest for you to speak with a professional who is capable to analyse through the condition for payout with you. This is because not all insurance companies adopt the same definition for the critical illness conditions - some has more strict criteira while other adopt a more broad definition. As a result, this may make the claim more complicated than it needs to be.

All things considered, you may wish to discuss with your agent or seek a professional second opinion on your choices. In case you are open to hearing my perspective from AIA, feel free to drop me a coffee invite: https://www.work.pzl.sg/#coffee

Here is everything about me and what I do best.

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