En pocas palabras, es necesario un seguro de vida si otra persona está en función de sus ingresos. Por lo general, esto significa que sus hijos, pero también podría ser utilizado para pagar la deuda de su cónyuge o sus padres.
El seguro de vida no es por lo general en la lista de un veinteañero de las prioridades financieras.
Y eso está bien. Tal vez.
Si usted es feliz solo y sin hijos, es probable que pueda saltar este post (por ahora). Pero si el matrimonio o una familia está en el horizonte, sigue leyendo.
A pesar de que la edad puede desempeñar un papel en la cantidad de seguro de vida que necesita, la decisión de comprar un seguro de vida no tiene nada que ver con la edad. Así que cuando usted necesita un seguro de vida? Aquí está la regla simple:
Usted necesita comprar seguro de vida cuando otra persona depende de sus ingresos.
Estos son algunos ejemplos comunes:
- Si usted es 25 con una esposa que se queda en casa con un recién nacido, usted no necesita un seguro de vida.
- If you’re 29 and single, you DO NOT need life insurance.
- If you’re 27, married, and both you and your spouse work, you might not need life insurance yet, but you may want to start thinking about it anyway.
Starting a family means buying life insurance!
In most cases, you need life insurance when you start a family. Because life insurance isn’t for you—it’s to provide for your family in case you die and can no longer take care of them.
In addition, there may be special situations in which you don’t have a family of your own but may still want some life insurance protection. For example, if a parent has cosigned a large student loan or a mortgage for you, a modest life insurance policy could pay their share in the event something happens to you. *See footnote.
Most of us begin to think about life insurance when we have children. That’s what my wife and I did. Shortly after our daughter was born, we both took out term life policies in amounts that would replace each of our individual income for 20 years and cover the expected cost of our daughter’s college tuition. When our second children was born, we increased our policy to take our son’s expenses into account.
If you’re wise, you might start planning for your life insurance needs before your first child is born. For example, if you’re married, you and your spouse may want to take out life insurance for each other, even if you both work. Many couples rely on two incomes to pay monthly expenses, and if one spouse dies, the other would have to cover those same expenses on their own.
Another advantage to buying life insurance sooner is that insurance gets more expensive as you age. And, if you develop a medical condition, you may not be able to get life insurance at all. So if you think you might need life insurance in the future, the best time to get it may be now while you’re young and healthy.
How to buy life insurance
When you decide you need to think about life insurance, determine how much life insurance you need:
- Multiply your annual income by the number of years you want the insurance to cover.
- Add any fixed expenses (like kids’ college tuition).
- Finally, subtract any non-retirement savings or investments you have that could cover some of these costs in lieu of an insurance benefit.
Next, talk to your local insurance agent or get free life insurance quotes online.
You should also take time to learn more about the differences between term life insurance and whole life insurance, which is sometimes sold as a combined insurance and investment product. Lauren and I stuck with simple term life insurance, and recommend you do, too.
Life insurance is an important part of your financial toolkit—but it’s not a tool that everybody needs at the same time. It depends on your age, your family situation, and whether you have people who depend on your income.