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/The Lifeline Program) - How do you convince aging baby boomers that others are willing to pay them to make sure their nightmares of a threadbare retirement don't come true? Answer: Get Betty White to cut a rap video so campy that it's at 1 million hits-and-climbing on YouTube.
Polls consistently show that nearly half of all boomers -- who were never known for saving even before the market crashed -- aren't confident they'll have enough money to retire comfortably. But here's the crucial point: As bad as they've been at adequately funding their 401(k)s and IRAs, they've been really, really good at buying insurance policies -- a record hundreds of billions of dollars worth, according to Conning Research & Consulting -- and many of those policies were taken out under circumstances that now make it more financially attractive for their holders to sell them to companies, in what's known as a "life settlement
," rather than to, say, re-up or let them lapse because the payments are unaffordable.
But let Betty explain.
In the video, titled "I'm Still Hot," which also stars English pop singer Luciana -- and lots of hunky guys being hand-fed cheesecake by guess who -- White raps:
"I hooked up with The Lifeline./I got big cash in no time./I'm living life at the top./Guess what? I'm still hot."
Okay, so maybe Betty only hit the highlights. But know she's referring to The Lifeline Program (www.thelifeline.com
), which already had a sterling, two-decades-long record of protecting the interests of those senior citizens whose life settlements it handled before recently deciding to expand to boomers.
"Baby boomers don't realize they could be sitting on hidden wealth that could ease the anxiety so many of them are now feeling," says William Scott Page, the company's president and CEO.
So, how much money?
Well, life settlements can be offered on term, whole or universal life policies, with the specific dollar amounts dependent on life expectancy, premiums and death benefits. And many believe life insurance policies may soon become the best-performing retirement investment if used as an asset for sale in one's golden years.
That said, the Wall Street Journal, in recently noting that they "may be a good idea if your policy's beneficiary has died and you have no one to replace him or her, or if you no longer need insurance," cited this example of a typical Lifeline settlement:
A 72-year-old man expected to live for seven more years with a $250,000 whole-life policy and annual premiums of $9,400, could expect to get a $110,000 settlement.
Maybe that helps explain why Betty's video is so popular.