SmartMoney Monday: How much life insurance do you need?

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Lately, we've been learning about life insurance and how important it is for every family. The question is, how much life insurance do you need?

Every situation is different of course, so it helps to ask yourself some basic questions. If you were to pass away today, what kind of expenses would you want to make sure are covered and not left as a financial burden for your loved ones? For example, your current mortgage balance or maybe future college expenses for your kids. Another question to ask is does your family rely on your monthly income to maintain their standard of living? If so, how would that income be replaced if you were to pass? So how much coverage you need depends not only on your current situation, but also your future needs and goals.

Let's say you have a young family - you may need to start thinking about how your spouse is going to be able to pay for their current and ongoing education. Now let's say your kids are older, have left home, and your mortgage is paid down, you might want insurance to protect you against the cost of a long term care event or maybe as a means for you to leave an inheritance for your kids and grandkids.

The amount of coverage and how you'll use it also really depends on where you are in your life and what your current and future needs or concerns are. As your life changes, so will your life insurance needs. You may end up discovering that you need more insurance while you're younger and less while you're older – or vice-versa.

Life insurance can provide you with the peace of mind that your loved ones will be ok should anything happen to you, but the key thing is to get the right amount of insurance that will help you address your unique needs, goals, and concerns.

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