How Much Life Insurance Cover Do I Need?

Information verified correct on October 1st, 2016

Key Facts

  • Common rule of thumb used is to take out enough to cover your current debts and 10-13 times current income. Though this may vary as everyones situation is different so it is always best to make your own assessment as well.
  • An insurance consultant can assist you in finding an appropriate level of cover.

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How Much Life Insurance Do You Need to Ensure Financial Stability?

It can be a real challenge to find a good life insurance plan. This is because a plan like this can be a critical asset that could be worth tens of thousands of dollars. It is also something that will work in the event that you have to deal with an illness, accident or even your death. This is needed to help you out with covering any expenses that you and your family members might be dealing with.

The problem though is that there are some cases where you might not be fully aware of what you are getting out of your plan. It can be very easy to forget about the amount of money that you would need to get saved up or how much coverage you should be using when getting your account to work. You might end up getting less insurance coverage than what you should really be dealing with.

This is why you will need to determine the amount of money that you will need to be covered for when getting a plan to work for you. You should review a series of critical factors for finding out how much you should be covered for. This is so you will find the right insurance plan for your family.

The first four parts of this calculation should be added together. This can help you to figure out all of the expenses that you owe. This will be used to determine your coverage needs.

Use our calculator to get a cover estimate

Family Expenses

There are certain expenses affective your family's way of life that are worth considering when comparing policies:

  • The annual personal expenses that your family has
  • All annual expenses for clothes, food and other things
  • Expenses for home rent and maintenance
  • Expenses for utility services, health insurance and other things
  • How many years you are willing to continue to pay for these things

All five factors should be multiplied by the lump sum that you would need to deal with if you are going to cover these charges. This will help you to find out what your family expenses are.

Expenses For Educating Your Kids

Education can also play a major part in determining how much cover you need to take out. It is worth considering the following factors:

  • The number of children you have
  • The amount of money for each child to complete primary, secondary and tertiary education

The costs for all three forms of education should be calculated with the number of children that you have in mind. You will pay more money if you have more kids.

Outstanding Debts To View

There are four important types of outstanding debts that you will need to calculate. These four types of outstanding debts are:

  • Your mortgage debt
  • Your debt from all credit and store charge cards
  • Any debts on your car loan if applicable
  • All other types of debts

All of these debts should be added together. This will help you to determine what you can get.

Additional Expenses

There are three other types of expenses that should be considered. These are expenses that will relate to anything that could occur as a result of an illness, accident or death. These are:

  • All costs for medical or hospital needs upon illness
  • Any costs for repairs to a home or vehicle after an accident
  • All costs for a funeral and getting an estate settled

These four categories for your expenses must be added together. This will be used as a base for helping you to see what you should be covered for.

Your Current Assets

The expenses will need to be subtracted by the assets that you have in your life. This will be used to determine the best amount of life insurance that you will need to get.

There are four important types of assets that you should be using if you want to get an accurate idea of how much money you should be spending on your insurance:

  • The value of the life insurance that you might already have; this includes any insurance that is in your superannuation cover
  • The amount of money in your superannuation plan
  • The current balance in a savings account that you have
  • All of your liquid assets; these include shares and trust fund functions among other things

All of these assets can be added together. They can help you to get an idea of how much money you will need to have handled when getting your debts taken care of.

*The information provided on this page should only be used to help you determine a rough estimate of the amount of cover you may require. finder.com.au recommends you consult an adviser prior to taking out cover if you need assistance in determining an adequate amount of cover.

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Coverage is the amount of money that you will be paid in the event of a claim. An insurance consultant can help you determine an appropriate amount. Calculator
Provides a lump sum payment if you become totally and permanently disabled and are unable to return to work.
Provides a lump sum payment if you suffer a serious medical condition. Cover can be taken out for 40-60 medical conditions depending on the policy you choose.
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