“My wife and I are both twenty-six (26) and expecting our first child in April. I know we need life insurance, but I have no idea how much. What is the right amount of life insurance for us?”
Congratulations to you both – your lives are about to get so much more wonderful than you can even imagine. Take it from the father of three daughters – being a parent is the most important – and rewarding – thing you will ever do.
You are very wise to be evaluating life insurance at this point. Your (both your) responsibilities are about to grow significantly. Life insurance can be a powerful tool to assist you in meeting your responsibilities in the event you are not around to handle them yourselves. No one likes to even consider the possibility that one or both of you might be lost to this little one yet born. Responsible adults (and parents) recognize the risk and take mature steps to protect their families.
Determining the correct amount of life insurance is a bit of science and a bit of art. The science is a logical calculation of the number of dollars it would take to replace the income you currently provide to the family. For example, if you earn $60,000 per year you might need $900,000 or so to replace the after-tax cash flow your income provides. The art involves ‘other’ issues you might want to address – paying for college for your child, paying off a mortgage, eliminating student loans. You get the idea. Don’t let the sheer size of the numbers throw you a curve. Young folks in excellent health are often amazed at how affordable large amounts of life insurance can actually be.
Sit with a qualified financial advisor or planner who will guide you through both the process of determining your specific coverage need and the process of shopping a number of companies to secure you the most affordable quality policies.
Good luck with your new baby. Take every opportunity to let your child know how wonderful they are, how proud you are of them, and how very loved they are. Everything else will fall into place.
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