According to a new study by LIMRA, life insurance sales are at an all-time low.

LIMRA’s latest Trends in Life Insurance Ownership study, which they conduct every 6 years found that only 44 percent of U.S. households have individual life insurance, and the percentage of households with no life coverage at all has grown to 30 percent (35 million), up from 22 percent in 2004. Among households with children under age 18, 11 million have no coverage.

Although 40 percent of those studied said that a key reason they have not bought more life insurance is because they have other financial priorities, Robert Kerzner, president and CEO of LIMRA, said not having the safety net of life insurance present would put many American families – who often live paycheck to paycheck – at serious financial risk.

Among households with children under age 18, 40 percent said they would immediately have trouble meeting everyday living expenses if the primary breadwinner died. Another 30 percent said they would have trouble keeping up with expenses after several months.

But what is even more interesting and relevant to insurance agents is that half of households said they felt they needed more life insurance. Moreover, 24 percent of households with children under 18 want to speak with a financial professional about their life insurance needs; and 25 percent of all households plan to buy life insurance in the next year.

There is so much opportunity here for agents who sell life insurance. Is it possible that consumers don’t really mean what they say, and when push comes to shove they won’t actually close the deal? Absolutely. But is it also possible that, with the right agent, they can be shown the power of life insurance, and all the safety and peace of mind it can bring them? Do I really need to answer that question?

Sounds like it’s time to hit the phones.