In uncertain economic times, it’s more critical than ever to evaluate both short- and long-term financial needs for family and loved ones. Considerations such as estate planning, retirement, investing and life insurance coverage are more important than ever to securing a family’s financial plan.
According to LIMRA, a global research and consulting organization serving the insurance industry, up to 30 percent of U.S. households have no life insurance coverage whatsoever. Approximately 11 million fewer individuals have life insurance compared to six years ago.
Throughout the month of September, the LIFE Foundation, insurance industry representatives and companies work together to promote Life Insurance Awareness Month to educate individuals and families on the need for life insurance.
“The sad fact is, millions are not protecting their loved ones’ future,” said Gary Lardy, CEO of IntelliQuote (www.intelliquote.com), a leading online life insurance agency. “The first step is to reach out to a licensed life insurance agent or top online resources to determine the amount of life insurance coverage needed based on an individual’s personal situation and family goals.”
According to Lardy, there are a number of factors that should be considered to determine the appropriate level and type of coverage.
Factors to Consider When Purchasing Life Insurance
When considering life insurance, evaluate your family’s current lifestyle, living expenses and future needs, such as:
- Marriage: Are you married, and would your spouse need financial support in the event of your passing to sustain their lifestyle?
- Home Purchase and Debt: Life insurance can be used to cover everyday expenses, but it can also help offset the costs of larger investments such as a home. Additionally, if you have accumulated debt with credit cards or installment loans, consider how much life insurance would be necessary to cover ongoing payments, or provide overall debt relief.
- Children and Dependents: From diapers and childcare to food, clothing and college, consider the appropriate amount to cover daily and long-term expenses for all your dependents. Recent statistics estimate raising a child from birth to 18 years old can cost upwards of $304,722. This number does not take into account college tuition. According to www.CollegeBoard.com, the total cost for a four-year public (in-state) school can top more than $80,000, not considering the college cost inflation rate of five percent per year. Likewise, if you are supporting aging parents or family members, consider their financial and healthcare needs if something were to happen to you.
- Career Change: If your income changes dramatically, it may be time to reevaluate your life insurance needs. To keep pace with an enhanced lifestyle shift that often comes with pay increases, your policy should be reviewed as well. If you’re living up to your new means, you should also be providing enough coverage to support your family’s lifestyle in the case of an unexpected passing.
- Retirement: Guarantee you have provided for your spouse to live comfortably in their spending years of retirement by providing a sound policy to supply ongoing financial support. With the proper amount of coverage, your spouse can enjoy the same standard of living and not be unrealistically burdened with final expenses—from medical and funeral costs to debt such as a mortgage, car payments, loans and credit cards.
Lardy also emphasizes the need to review an existing life insurance policy every three to five years to ensure it is still the right fit given life changes.
How Much is Enough? The IntelliQuote Calculator
Once the need to secure your loved ones’ future with a life insurance policy is understood, the question now becomes – how much life insurance do you need?
To establish how much life insurance will adequately address your family’s needs today and into the future, refer to the IntelliQuote life insurance needs calculator at: http://www.intelliquote.com/resources/life/term-life-insurance-calculator.asp. The calculator determines assets needed at the time of death to account for all essentials, and estimates how much future income is needed to maintain a standard of living that’s adequate for your household.
“The most important step is to understand your family’s needs, and become educated about the different types of life insurance available to meet these needs,” said Lardy. “A licensed life insurance agent and your financial advisor can help you determine your best options for long term financial security for your loved ones.”
When considering how much life insurance you need to protect the long term interests of you and your family, carefully evaluate where you are today and what the possibilities might be for the future. Purchasing adequate life insurance coverage that will address changes and uncertainties will help ensure a comfortable future for your loved ones—and peace of mind for you.
A leading online life insurance agency since 1997, IntelliQuote provides customers simplified, private access to compare, shop and buy life insurance online, including term life insurance quotes. IntelliQuote offers clients a wide selection of competitive products from A-rated carriers, supported by licensed agents. This simplified approach makes purchasing a policy easy and straightforward while providing a savings of up to 70% per policy. IntelliQuote is a member of the LIFE Foundation and is committed to ongoing consumer education. For information on how to estimate how much coverage an individual might need, visit www.intelliquote.com.
For more information, contact www.intelliquote.com, or 888.883.6855.
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