Transamerica life insurance review: Fast and competitive

Transamerica is a highly-rated life insurance company with speedy underwriting times and competitive rates.

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By

Logan SachonLogan SachonSenior Managing Editor, Life Insurance & ResearchLogan Sachon is the senior managing editor of life insurance and research at Policygenius, where she edits life insurance content and leads life insurance surveys and data studies. As a journalist, her work has appeared in The Guardian, Business Insider, CNN Money, BuzzFeed, Money Under 30, VICE, New York Magazine, and elsewhere.&Jessica OlivoJessica OlivoFreelance contributorJessica Olivo is a writer living in Connecticut. She specializes in web and blog content in a variety of topics such as parenting, business, and culture, as well as serialized and short fiction.After working in publishing and book publicity for many years, she transitioned to freelance writing full time.

Edited by

Adam MorganAdam MorganEditorial DirectorAdam Morgan is an editorial director at Policygenius who leads the life insurance team. Previously, he led editorial teams matrixed across multiple financial publications at Red Ventures — including Bankrate, NextAdvisor, Million Mile Secrets, and others.

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Transamerica

Transamerica logo

Policygenius rating

Our proprietary ratings methodology takes multiple factors into account, including customer satisfaction, cost, financial strength, and policy offerings. See the “Ratings methodology” section for more details.
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4.6

AM Best rating

A.M. Best is a global credit rating agency that scores the financial strength of insurance companies on a scale from A++ (Superior) to D (Poor).

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Cost

Using a mix of internal and external rate data, we grade the cost of each insurance company's premiums on a scale from least expensive ($) to most expensive ($$$$$).

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The bottom line

Transamerica offers competitive rates across all age groups, fast turnaround times for traditionally underwritten policies, and a great no-medical-exam term life insurance option.

Pros

  • Competitive rates for term life insurance

  • No-medical-exam available for qualifying applicants, including smokers and people between 60 and 70, which is rare

  • One of the fastest turnaround times in the industry for traditionally underwritten term policies

Cons

  • Term life not available in New York

  • Not a good option for people with a history of cancer, alcohol abuse, or asthma

Basic coverages offered

  • Term life insurance: Transamerica has two term life insurance policies available, Trendsetter Super and Trendsetter LB. Both policies are available to people age 18 to 80 for coverage starting at $25,000, with 10, 15, 20, 25, and 30-year terms. They differ in that Trendsetter Super is available for coverage beyond $10 million, and Trendsetter LB is only available up to $2 million. Additionally, Trendsetter LB comes with three living benefit riders automatically included.

  • No-medical-exam term life insurance: Trendsetter Super and Trendsetter LB both have no-medical-exam options for qualifying applicants for coverage up to $2 million.

  • Indexed universal life insurance: Transamerica’s indexed universal life insurance policy is called Financial Foundation IUL. (Note: This product is not available through the Policygenius marketplace.)

  • Whole life insurance: Transamerica’s whole life insurance policy is called Transamerica Lifetime. (Note: This product is not available through the Policygenius marketplace.)

  • Final expense life insurance: Transamerica has three final expense whole life plans — Immediate Solution, 10-Pay Solution, and Easy Solution. (Note: These products are not available through the Policygenius marketplace.)

Additional coverages offered

  • Terminal illness accelerated death benefit rider: Included for both Trendsetter Super and Trendsetter LB, the ADB rider allows you to access a portion of your death benefit if you’re diagnosed with a qualifying terminal illness. 

  • Chronic illness accelerated death benefit rider: Included in Trendsetter LB, the chronic illness rider allows you to access a portion of your death benefit if you’re diagnosed with a qualifying chronic illness. 

  • Critical illness accelerated death benefit rider: Included in Trendsetter LB, the critical illness rider allows you to access a portion of your death benefit if you’re diagnosed with a qualifying critical illness. 

  • Monthly disability income rider: Available for an extra cost for Trendsetter LB policies, this rider provides additional monthly income during a period of qualifying disability. 

  • Income protection option (IPO) rider: An optional but free rider option for Trendsetter LB policies, the IPO rider allows you to structure the death benefit payout to your beneficiaries in monthly payments (rather than a lump sum). 

  • Disability waiver of premium rider: For an extra cost on both Trendsetter Super and LB policies, the disability waiver of premium rider waives premium payments during a period of qualifying disability.

  • Children's insurance rider: For an extra cost on both Trendsetter Super and Trendsetter LB policies, the child's rider provides life insurance to the insured’s children up to $99,000 (many term policies cap coverage on this rider at $10,000).

  • Accidental death benefit rider: For an extra cost on both Trendsetter Super and Trendsetter LB policies, this rider pays an additional death benefit if the insured dies from an accident.

Ratings methodology

Price

5.0/5

Our price rating scale looks at life insurance rates for a sample 20-year term policy with a $1 million coverage for a 35-year-old female non-smoker with a Standard Plus risk classification, the rating an insurance company gives you that determines your rates (if a company doesn't have a Standard Plus rating, we use its Standard rates). The quote we got from Transamerica puts it in the least expensive category for our rating system.

Customer experience

4.4/5

Policygenius rates insurance companies on our customer experience scale based on the data provided by the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC). NAIC’s complaint index tracks the number of consumer complaints received for individual companies. According to this data, Transamerica received a NAIC complaint rating of 2.8, putting it above the national average of 1.0.

Transparency

4.1/5

Policygenius’ transparency rating scale measures how transparent insurance companies are to current and prospective clients. Transamerica’s score is average for the companies rated on our scale. It received points for publishing policy details on its website, including term lengths and coverage amounts, as well as information on the company’s financial strength. It lost points for not listing their average rates on their website, and for lacking an online support center or customer service chat feature.

Financial strength

3.9/5

Our financial strength rating is calculated by combining the company’s financial health ratings from A.M. Best, Standard & Poor’s, and Moody’s. While Transamerica's A score is excellent from A.M. Best, the scores received from Standard & Poor’s, and Moody’s — A+ and A1 respectively — are considered average on those companies’ scales. While other companies scored higher, Transamerica is still a reliable choice. The company has been around for over 100 years and has been owned by Aegon Group since 1999.

A closer look at Transamerica life insurance

Who is Transamerica best for?

Transamerica is a good option for seniors due to its low minimum coverage amounts. The company accepts retirement income as financial justification for the amount of coverage you can qualify for. Another perk for seniors is Transamerica’s no-medical-exam term option for people in their 60s, for up to $50,000 in coverage.

Since Transamerica does not require a social security number to apply for coverage, it’s also a good option for some immigrants and visa and green card holders. 

What makes Transamerica unique?

Most life insurance companies require medical exams as part of the application process, especially for smokers. Transamerica, however, offers no-medical-exam options to smokers who are otherwise in good health, making them our choice for the best no-med life insurance for smokers.

Who should consider a different life insurance company?

Anyone with a suspended driver’s license is ineligible for Transamerica’s policies and will be denied during the application process. Also, Transamerica’s term life insurance policies are not offered in the state of New York.

Expert opinions on Transamerica

"Transamerica is a great option for a wide variety of people due to its low rates, and it can be an especially good for for seniors, immigrants, and people who use tobacco products. " — Eloise Spinello, licensed life insurance specialist at Policygenius

Transamerica life insurance rates

The chart below shows average monthly premium prices for a 20-year term life insurance policy with $500,000 in coverage for non-smokers in a Preferred health classification; quotes are based on the Policygenius Life Insurance Price Index methodology.

Age/sex

Transamerica average

Industry average

25-year-old female

$20.01

$21.08

25-year-old male

$25.67

$26.90

35-year-old female

$26.86

$25.58

35-year-old male

$32.32

$30.34

45-year-old female

$52.51

$47.86

45-year-old male

$67.41

$60.76

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Transamerica history, reputation, and social responsibility

Transamerica was originally a bank, founded in 1906 by Amadeo Giannini. In 1930, the company acquired the Occidental Life insurance Company and began selling insurance. [1] The Dutch financial services company Aegon Group acquired Transamerica in 1999. Aegon is listed on Euronext Amsterdam and the New York Stock Exchange as AEG. [2]

Both Transamerica and Aegon Group put a lot of value in helping their communities through grants, volunteer opportunities, and employee match contributions. Transamerica also has programs promoting inclusion and diversity, wellbeing, human services, art, and culture. The company also claims to put a high priority on community education, especially STEM and financial literacy. [3]

Transamerica in the news

  • In October 2022, Transamerica was named one of the best companies for working parents by research firm Seramount. (Seramount)

  • In April 2022, Transamerica received a 2022 APEX Award from Training magazine. The award honors its ​​employee training and development programs. (Training)

  • In January 2022, Transamerica announced that it had earned a perfect score from the Human Rights Campaign Foundation on its 2022 Corporate Equality Index (CEI), which measures workplace equality for LGBTQ+ employees. (Transamerica)

Transamerica vs. other companies

Compare Transamerica to similar life insurance companies using the table below.

Company

Policygenius rating

AM Best rating

Cost

Transamerica

4.6/5

A

$

Globe Life

4.1/5

A

NA

Fidelity Life

4.3/5

A-

NA

TruStage

4.5/5

A

NA

Foresters Financial

4.4/5

A

$$

Gerber Life

4.0/5

A

$$$

Prudential

4.1/5

A+

$$

Pacific Life

4.8/5

A+

$

AAA Life

4.2/5

A

$$$

Brighthouse Financial

5.0/5

A

$

Banner Life

5.0/5

A+

$

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Frequently asked questions

Is Transamerica a good company?

Yes, Transamerica is a highly rated life insurance company. As one of the most competitive options for life insurance, Transamerica is a good choice for customers looking for a reliable and affordable policy.

What is Transamerica?

Transamerica is a financial services provider specializing in insurance, employee benefits, retirement, and annuities. While the company was founded in San Francisco, the headquarters are now in Cedar Rapids, IA.

Who owns Transamerica?

Transamerica was acquired by the Dutch company Aegon Group in 1999. Together both companies have over 30 million customers and 22,000 employees.

How do I contact Transamerica?

To contact Transamerica, including the claims support team, call 800-797-2643 or visit the Transamerica website.

References

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Policygenius uses external sources, including government data, industry studies, and reputable news organizations to supplement proprietary marketplace data and internal expertise. Learn more about how we use and vet external sources as part of our

editorial standards.
  1. Transamerica

    . "

    A History of Innovation

    ." Accessed December 19, 2022.

  2. Aegon

    . "

    About

    ." Accessed December 19, 2022.

  3. Transamerica

    (Aegon Transamerica Foundation). "

    Aegon Transamerica Foundation

    ." Accessed December 19, 2022.

Authors

Logan Sachon is the senior managing editor of life insurance and research at Policygenius, where she edits life insurance content and leads life insurance surveys and data studies. As a journalist, her work has appeared in The Guardian, Business Insider, CNN Money, BuzzFeed, Money Under 30, VICE, New York Magazine, and elsewhere.

Jessica Olivo is a writer living in Connecticut. She specializes in web and blog content in a variety of topics such as parenting, business, and culture, as well as serialized and short fiction.

After working in publishing and book publicity for many years, she transitioned to freelance writing full time.

Editor

Adam Morgan is an editorial director at Policygenius who leads the life insurance team. Previously, he led editorial teams matrixed across multiple financial publications at Red Ventures — including Bankrate, NextAdvisor, Million Mile Secrets, and others.

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