It’s true. GoFundMe is the number one crowdfunding website for funerals, boasting $330 million raised per year for more than 125,000 memorial fundraisers.

And that stark fact has become a useful one for Cody Garrett, founder and president of Measure Twice Financial, a comprehensive, fee-only financial planning firm in Houston that works with do-it-yourself investors on the path to early retirement.

“My clients are people who want to be work optional before 60 and want to retire early, in the next five years,” Garrett said.

Many are savvy entrepreneurs or executives, but may balk at their need for term life insurance, which in exchange for policy premiums offers financial coverage for the term of a policy to the beneficiary of a policy in an unfortunate event of a policy holder’s demise. 

“Before assuming that life insurance is always a waste of money, consider how many funerals are funded with GoFundMe,” Garrett said in a wry tweet this week.

The GoFundMe ad is one useful way to put the possible need for term life insurance into perspective for clients, the planner said.

With the average cost of a funeral ranging from $7,600 and $12,000, funerals can get expensive fast. Even a cremation will cost between $4,000 and $7,000, according to, a consumer site that includes a directory of funeral services.

Beyond a funeral, a term life insurance policy with relatively inexpensive premium for a death benefit of $100,000, $500,000 or $1 million can also help a surviving spouse and dependent children carry on, keep the house and even attend college.

Garrett, who does comprehensive life insurance analysis for clients who want it for the flat $6,400 fee he charges, said he is keeping his own term life policy in place “until my surviving spouse and dependents wouldn’t experience a financial burden upon my death.”

Nicholas VanGeest, a financial advisor based in Grandville, Mich, said on Twitter the GoFundMe statistics underscore the need for at least basic term life coverage.

“It is wildly affordable protection,” VanGeest said. “The GoFundMe is framed like a value add, but it’s a pretty sad statistic of how few people protect their families adequately.”

Advisors’ attention to clients’ insurance needs can be timely, as the economy, pandemic and Americans’ financial challenges are clearly taking their toll on term life and insurance sales overall, according to LIMRA.

“One in 10 consumers said they have reduced, canceled, or put off buying needed insurance or plan to if economic conditions persist,” Elaine Tumicki, LIMRA corporate vice president and director of insurance product research, said in statement.

“This is worrisome because the need for life insurance has never been greater. More than 100 million American adults live with a coverage gap,” Tumicki added.

LIMRA reported December 7 that overall life insurance policy sales fell 12% in the third quarter and 10% year-to-date, with term life sales falling for the fourth consecutive quarter.

In the third quarter, term new premium dropped 6% from prior year, and fell 5% year to date.

“The strong consumer demand for life insurance we saw in 2021 has been waning,” said John Carroll, LIMRA’s senior vice president and head of Insurance and Annuities.

“Since January 2022, consumers’ concerns about the pandemic, which played a role in driving the record premium and policy sales growth in 2021, have diminished as worries about the economy and inflation increased over several months. As a result, the surge in smaller whole life and term policy sales experienced in 2021 ended in 2022. Although new premium for these products remains above pre-pandemic levels,” Carroll said.