We all know that at some point in our lives the prudent thing to do is to buy some life insurance. Some people have definite ideas as to the type and amount necessary to fulfill their needs. Others find themselves in a decision making dilemma. These people don’t know how much to buy or what type…
You may say the easiest way to go is to ask a life insurance agent. If you know a reputable one that sells for a highly rated company then go for it. If you don’t then here are some guidelines that you may find useful.
Single Persons Insurance Needs
If you are single then the amount of life insurance needed is whatever it will cost to pay off your last expenses including funeral costs. I refer to things like paying off outstanding debt that may leave a loved one holding the bag. Attorneys fees and estate taxes should also be included.
Needs Of A Married Person With Children
A married persons needs are a different matter, especially if there are children involved. Both parents work, more often than not, in todays world. Both help with the maintenance of the household. If either parent dies serious financial problems could come into play. Regardless of whether or not the income is coming in the bills have to be met. The rent or mortgage has to be paid, the survivors have to eat and they also have to wear clothes. They will continue needing a car as well as sufficient funds to pay utility bills.
Every child today is involved in something. It could be some kind of sport or other extra curricular activities. All these things cost money.
What you need to think about is that the cost of living, for a particular household, is not going to change very much because one of the breadwinners is no longer there…unless that person is very extravagant. If it costs $50,000 to live now, for example it will cost close to that amount after a spouse dies. We should therefore purchase sufficient life insurance to assure the continuation of that persons income after death.
Now, what type of life insurance should we buy. Term life insurance is a favored choice but there are many term plans to choose from. Here is what you do. Decide how long a period you will need the policy for and buy a level term policy that will fit that tome period.
Your youngest child is age 12. S/he is expected to graduate by age 18 but you also have to figure in 4 years of college. You therefore need to buy a policy that would provide sufficient income until this child is age 22. You also should add an amount which would cover the college costs for all the children if you died. The same consideration goes for your spouse. A 10 year or 15 year term policy would take care of this situation.
You may also want to consider providing the life insurance coverage for a longer period of time so that tour spouse is also taken care of. In this case you may want to purchase a 30 year term policy. You can convert it to a permanent plan within a specific period of years, depending on the company you are dealing. On the other hand, you may choose to buy a permanent policy like whole life, universal life, variable universal life or variable life policy which will give you the coverage from the outset and continue for a longer period.
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