Determining How Much Life Insurance You Need

When considering life insurance, you’re planning and preparing for an event most of us would rather not think about. But life insurance represents a critical step in managing your personal finances and ensuring your family’s well-being.

The Two Approaches to Life Insurance

You can use one of two approaches to estimate how much life insurance you should buy: the needs approach or the replacement-income approach. Using the needs approach, you calculate the amount of life insurance necessary to cover your family’s financial needs if you die. Using the replacement-income approach, you calculate the amount of life insurance you need to equal the income your family will lose. Let’s look briefly at each approach.

You need how much?

Using the needs approach, you add up the amounts that represent all the needs your family will have after your death, including funeral and burial costs, uninsured medical expenses, and estate taxes. However, your family depends on you to pay for other needs, such as your child’s college tuition, business or personal debts, and food and housing expenses over time.

The needs approach is somewhat limiting. The task of identifying and tallying family needs is difficult, and separating the true needs of your family from what you want for them is often impossible.

Replacing Income

Using the replacement-income approach for estimating life insurance requirements, you calculate the life insurance proceeds that would replace your earnings over a specified number of years after your death.

Life insurance companies sometimes approximate your replacement income at four or five times your annual income. A more precise estimation considers the actual amount your family members need annually, the number of years for which they will need this amount, and the interest rate your family will earn on the life insurance proceeds, as well as inflation over the years during which your family draws on the life insurance proceeds.

Note: Do remember as you quantify the income you want to replace that Social Security provides generous survivors benefits if you’ve qualified. These benefits can easily total $2,000 a month or more.

Calculating Replacement-Income Amounts with Excel

If you’ve got access to a computer running Microsoft Excel, the popular spreadsheet program, you can use your computer to calculate the amount of insurance you need to replace a specified number of years of income. Suppose, for example, that you want to buy enough life insurance to replace the income from a $50,000-a-year job for 15 years. If you figure your family will earn 5% on the life insurance proceeds should the worst case scenario occur, you enter the following formula into a cell in an Excel workbook to calculate the replacement income life insurance amount:

=-PV(5%,15,50000)

Excel returns the formula result 518,982.90 indicating that you would need roughly $520,000 of life insurance, invested at 5%, to payout $50,000 a year for 15 years.

Two Calculation Tips

If you want to factor in inflation because you’re trying to replace income over a long period of time, you should use a real rate of return rather a regular, or nominal, rate of return.

To calculate a real rate of return, subtract the inflation rate from the interest rate in the formula. For example, if you expect 2% inflation, you could replace the formula shown earlier with this formula:

=-PV(5%-2%,15,50000)

Here’s a final calculation tip: You probably want to round up your number. For example, if the formula provided earlier returns the value 518982.90, you might want to round up this value to $600,000. Or $750,000.

Determining how much Auto Insurance Coverage you Need

1: Other Party:

Auto Insurance Bodily Injury (BI) Liability and Property Damage (PD) coverage is Legally required in most states today. (BI & PD) Most people understand that they need BI and PD, but they have no idea how to determine how much coverage they need.

Try this simple question: What if your car was involved in an auto accident tonight where heaven forbid, someone else was injured or killed? Remember, everything you own is in the back seat of the car with you and is at risk in a lawsuit! So, what do you think their family would sue you for? $15,000? $25,000? $100,000 or even maybe a Million dollars! Where would you get the money to pay them?

Perhaps the Equity in your Home would help? How about your Savings and/or Investments? You could even have up to 25% of your wages attached to pay the award in most states! Are you prepared to sacrifice everything you own to pay an award due to this accident? If not, read on for how to choose the auto insurance coverage you need.

2: You and Your Family:

Now let’s turn the above accident around. For some unfortunate reason, you or a loved one is the one who is injured or killed in an auto accident. Where would you get the money if the person who hit you did not have auto insurance or not enough auto insurance? Medical bills can be covered if you have health insurance. But health insurance doesn’t cover loss of life, pain & suffering or permanent disability.

Maybe you have a life insurance policy through your employer or your own individual life policy. Is the benefit amount sufficient to cover your family if your loved one is killed? But even if you have life insurance, what pays for the misery, the pain and suffering, maybe the fact you or a loved one can’t walk or use their arms again?

You might have a disability insurance policy through your work if you’re lucky or had good financial advice. But disability insurance doesn’t pay for loss of life, pain & suffering, permanent loss of your legs, arm or hand.

The only coverage that pays for these things is a part of an auto insurance policy known as Un/Under-insured motorist coverage. You can only buy as much coverage here as you have in Liability coverage. Your auto insurance agent should be able to help you determine the exact amount you need.

3: Your Car

Comprehensive and Collision Coverage are the third part of an auto insurance policy and are sometimes referred to as “Full coverage.” Basically the difference is this: If you run into the tree you are covered by Collision coverage. If the tree runs into you (hypothetically of course), then you are covered by comprehensive coverage. Comprehensive also covers broken windshields, fire, theft and vandalism. The higher deductible (risk) you take here, the lower the premium. Use the savings here to purchase higher limits in the coverages that protect your assets and your family.

The bottom line to determining proper auto insurance coverage is, of course, the money available in your household budget. An excellent place to start in determining the proper auto insurance coverage for your family is to meet with your local auto insurance agent.

Most cut-rate companies concern themselves with one thing only: Price. Tell them what coverage you have and they’ll see if they can give you the same coverage for less. You become the insurance professional. If this is the only need you have then that is ok. If not, you need to seek the advice of a professional to help you determine the proper amount of coverage you need and how best to accomplish it.

Review these tips for auto insurance coverage to make sure you have enough to protect your family.

Depend On Standalone Providers When It Comes To Getting Cheap Mortgage Protection Insurance

Cheap mortgage protection insurance can be hard to find especially if you want a quality product while making savings on the premiums, but if you go to a standalone provider then it is possible to obtain quality mortgage protection for less than you think.

Payment protection insurance, of which mortgage payment protection insurance is one part of – has suffered from many problems, one of them being the ridiculous high premiums that are often charged for the cover. Another reason why it has been in the spotlight for the wrong reasons is the lack of information that is given regarding the product at the time of buying it. It has to be said that the majority of problems that have been associated with mortgage protection insurance are due to policies sold by the high street lender.

The vast majority of policies that are purchased are sold at the time of taking out the mortgage but this is the dearest way of taking out the protection and led to many people taking policies that they couldn’t claim against.

When bought with the exclusions in mind it can make the difference between you losing your home or keeping it. It can provide you with a tax free monthly income with which to pay your mortgage after you have been out of work, usually for 30 days or more. The mortgage protection insurance policy would continue to pay out for up to 12 months if need be and with some providers for 24 months, but you have to be aware that the product isn’t suitable for the circumstances of everyone.

Some of the common reasons why you wouldn’t be able to claim on a policy include only being in part time work, self employed, retired or if you suffer from a pre-existing medical condition. Of course these are only a few of the reasons which could stop you from claiming and need to be read and understood before you take out your cheap mortgage protection insurance.

Dental Treatment

There are not many people who would admit to enjoying a visit to the dentist. The trip often leads to considerable pain or at least discomfort. You are never really sure what is going to be involved and how much treatment you will need. You don’t know how much it is going to cost, unless you have dental insurance, in which case you don’t need to worry about this. But generally speaking, most people do not enjoy visiting their dentist.

In many ways we’re much like children. While people tend to get over most of their childhood fears as they get older, dental treatment is one that seems to persist into adulthood. Partly we have our selves to blame. Many people put off visiting the dentist for years and only go once they are in considerable pain. They skip check ups if they have no complaints and postpone the inevitable visit for as long as is humanly possible.

This means that by the time we do visit the dentist, which is a visit that is long overdue, we need so much work done and it costs so much money that it just serves to put us off going back again for as long as is possible. This is what causes the entire problem.

Many of the worst aspects about visiting the dentist could be avoided by going back for regular checkups and keeping on top of problems. Dentists advise that they can prevent many common problems from ever occurring if they catch them quickly enough and what could become costly and painful surgery can be dealt with simply and all the hassle avoided. But this requires that they see your teeth fairly regularly so that they can avoid problems before they occur.

Most dentists offer you the chance to book your next check up months in advance. This means that when you show up for one, you book your next check up while you are at the dentist’s surgery. This means that you will never forget to make an appointment. Then the dentist will also send you a reminder when the appointment approaches so that you will not forget to attend. What could be simpler?

Regular check ups can help you to avoid expensive and painful surgery and many dental insurance plans will cover check ups as standard in the policy. Therefore, get insurance and start seeing your dentist frequently. Don’t put off the visit until its too late or you really will have something to fear from your dentist.

Dental Plans: How To Choose The Best Dental Insurance For You

You understand that you need dental insurance. After all, it is an essential part of life, no different than any other medical coverage. And, despite the fact that you hate going to the dentist, you know that, one day, you may need more than a simple check-up. If an extensive amount of work is done, you need to find yourself covered. So, you need the right plan to suit your lifestyle. Often, businesses will cover dental insurance and offer plans to their employees. This is how the majority pays for their dental work so,

below, we will explain the must common plans used to give you an idea of where to start:

One: direct reimbursement plan. The most favored plan, this lets employees be reimbursed for any money they spend on dental care. If you have anything from a check-up to an operation, you will pay for it, and then your employers will give the money back. This makes it a simple process, hence its popularity. Not all companies can afford to do this, however. Small businesses may not be able to match larger bills.

Two: indemnity plan. Smaller businesses are more likely to use this plan. With it, they will pay one hundred percent of cleanings amount, eighty percent for basic work like getting a cap and fifty percent for surgical procedures. The employee will then pay the rest. While some find this an unfair plan, smaller companies can not afford to pay one percent of every visit. They just do not have the funding.Still, unless a major procedure is being done, the employee will have to pay very little.

Three: managed care plan.This is often the most common, though not always the most favored plan. For businesses with little money to spend on dental insurance, this plan will suffice. Employees pay a co-payment. This, in turn, helps pay for procedures. The more involved the procedure, the higher the co-payment. This allows employers to pay for only some of the bill. Of course, this plan is not popular with most employees as they may end up paying the majority, but it must be understood that, for smaller businesses, dental insurance is more luxury than necessity.

These three plans are the most common found in the work place, and you will–in all likelihood–deal with them. If you have the fortune to work in a larger business, expect the first plan and, therefore, the best plan. Smaller companies will rely more on the other two. While all plans provide coverage, direct reimbursement provides the best and most wide-spread. Of course, because of this, it takes a company with a solid financial ground, Employers lose money with it. Your smaller businesses cannot afford to do that; they need every cent to pay the bills.

Do learn all you can about your company’s care plan, however. Never simply sign anything without understanding what it offers and entails. Learn all you can about benefits and stipulations.

Dental Insurance Plan: A Few Things To Remember

Regular dental check up is the foremost advice that any dental health care professional offers. But only few of us act on that expert advice. Simply because most of us are lazy. Besides, we do not want to spend money on something for which there is apparently no urgent need. Laziness is the state of mind and has to be taken care of by us on our own, but so far as expenses are concerned, dental insurance plans take much of the load off one’s pocket. However, while going for a dental insurance plan, there are a few things you must ensure.

1.Make sure that the dental insurance plan allows you to choose your own dentist. If the dentist you want for yourself and your family is not among those that the plan approves, the expenses incurred by visiting such dentist may not be borne by the insurance providers. So, make sure that you are not put to any such irritating inconvenience. Pay a little more, if you have to, to be attended by your preferred dentist. It’s well worth it.

2.Consider the restrictions, if any, imposed by the plan on your choosing the treatment options. There are a few insurance plans that tend to cap the number of treatments allowed while a few others would limit the expendable amount. Those who have a family history of poor dental health must consider this aspect very carefully and ensure that the plan they choose imposes the least number of restrictions on their choice of treatment.

3.Know what your plan covers exactly and what stands outside its purview. A good dental insurance plan allows a cleaning treatment every six months. X-ray and fluoride treatments are inclusive, as they cost little or nothing at all. So far as the major treatment procedures are concerned, you are required by many plans to pay 50 percent of the expenses. If your family has had good dental health in the past, you may ask for lesser coverage in this area.

4.Who all in your family would be covered under the plan is also an important issue. Mostly, dental insurance plans cover the spouse and also the dependent children right from the birth up to 18 years of age.

These are a few things that you must consider while going for an insurance plan so that all of your dental worries are a thing of past.

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Dental Insurance guide- Choose the best Dental Insurance

Dental insurance offers coverage for your routine as well as not so routine dental work. It is an effective way to prevent damage to your teeth. It can be received via resellers and companies that provide dental insurance for individuals as well as families. Generally dental insurance policy includes cleanings, fillings and crowns, emergency tooth replacements, non-cosmetic oral surgeries and x-rays.

You should determine that what dental policy is best for you. For that purpose you’ve to answer yourself for some question like:

Can you choose your dentist?

Will your dentist provide better as well as cheap treatment?

What will your dental plan cover?

Will your dentist schedule an appointment for you?

What cost you can pay to your dentist?

Employees can get dental insurance from their employers but employers have rights to place restrictions on dental services covered in the plan. They’ll provide a list of dentists that are participating in the group dental insurance plan. Some dentists prefer PPO because in this plan insurer pays at least 80% on most claims. People can get 100% repayment for routine dental visits whereas major surgeries and cosmetic procedures may reimburse 50% to the dentist.

Other type of dental insurance is HMO that is the less satisfactory because in this case dentist charged higher costs. Under this policy eligible patients can’t deny the treatment and people participate less in the HMO dental insurance plan.

Cost of dental insurance plans can be as low as $80 dollars a year. Low cost dental insurance plans usually works for your future dental work. Several employers provide better arrangement for their employees’ dental care. Emergency dental insurance plan may cover dental bills for routine visits.

Dental Insurance: A White Collar Robbery?

Dental Insurance is a big racket– I don’t say this to offend you. It is a big racket having 32 teeth (Normally!) Still not clear on why do I call it a racket? Well, if you break a cord of the racket, only that cord needs to be replaced; the racket is in tact. Similarly, if you lose a teeth (God forbid), the loss is limited. How expensive the dental treatment is! You give your teeth to the dentist and make payment as well.

Without insurance protection, dental treatment is a difficult proposition. I remember about a real life incident. A health benefit scheme was introduced in a Bank under which actual dental care treatment expenses for Officers were reimbursed in full. The response to the scheme was awesome. Claims for reimbursement of expenses poured in. It almost assumed the form of a racket.

One particular officer tendered bills for reimbursement of expenses, almost daily. One day I asked the dealing Assistant, “What’s wrong with the dental health of this Officer? Is he dentally, medically unfit?” Going by the claims he is submitting and the nature of dental problems descriptions, not only he, his next seven generations need to be declared medically unfit! I added.

This happens with every good scheme, badly implemented. But most of the schemes today are not so good policies and implemented quite effectively by the insurance agents.

As for making the plans, the think tanks in any insurance company are capable of working wonders. The premium structure is so planned, you just don’t realize, how nicely they take out the money from your pocket! After all they have to pay fat salaries to their executives, their fat TA bills, the air-conditioned comfort in the offices and residences, the huge housing loans at negligible rates of interest, the bonuses and incentives, ample number of holidays, travel by air and a lot more expenses.

The normal essential dental plan covers eligible expenses including diagnosis expenses, prevention and treatment expenses, dental cleansing, dentures and fixtures and surgery. You need to study the policy terms and conditions carefully as there are always ifs and buts conditions, and the settlement of the claims depends upon the social ethics of the society/country. The clause “conditions apply” mostly works to the disadvantage of the policyholders.

Someone has compared the insurance business with, “white -collar robbery”. He must be having his valid reasons!

Dental Insurance & Why It’s Important For Your Family

It may often go overlooked, but dental insurance is something that every individual needs to think about. In the event of a sudden toothache, the need for a regular checkup or cleaning and even possibly oral surgery, dental insurance is a must. Coverage is available from a variety of sources, including some employers and national insurance providers.

Dental insurance is more affordable than medical insurance and can often result in low monthly payments for those who have to seek out the coverage themselves. The amount of insurance that is selected will determine what type of deductible, if any, the patient is responsible for.

It may be surprising, but many people develop problems with their wisdom teeth. In the event that they do not develop as they should, they may become impacted underneath the gums and need to be surgically extracted. This procedure is very expensive and requires a certain amount of followup care, which can really add up without dental insurance. There are a number of other reasons that someone would unknowingly need dental care, including an accident that requires

Unlike life or health insurance, the cost of dental insurance isn’t particularly affected by age. While it’s true that a patient’s past oral health may be in question, it is much easier to get than other types. Prior to being accepted by a dental insurance provider, the patient may be required to undergo an oral checkup and x-rays in order to determine any previous or current conditions that may require treatment. In most instances, a new dental insurance policy will not cover previously known conditions. In other words, you could not find out that you have an impacted wisdom tooth and then sign up on a new dental plan to get the coverage for a procedure. The patient is required to disclose any previously known condition(s).

Dental insurance can be purchased as an individual plan or for the entire family. In order to make sure that a particular dentist accepts a specific dental insurance, the patient should inquire about the office policy prior making an appointment or arriving for treatment. The worst time to learn that a dentist doesn’t accept your dental insurance is after receiving treatment and immediately prior to getting the bill. In order to avoid the headache, make sure that the dentist will accept your provider’s coverage ahead of time. In some instances, insurance plans are only accepted at specific locations.