How Often Should You Adjust Your Life Insurance Policy?

The whole point of life insurance is that you never know when you'll need it. So even though your policy might be long-term, you need to make sure it offers the right amount of benefits for your current situation.
A good rule of thumb is to recalculate your life insurance needs once a year, or more often if there's a major change in your life. Here are some examples:The Things You OwnWhether you're married or single, it's good to know that your finances will be resolved if you should die unexpectedly. That could mean paying off loans or a mortgage, and it's especially important if you have a lot of debt or want your family to keep living in your home.
Take another look at your policy when: You buy or sell a homeYou take on new debtFamily MattersYou'll want to know that your family's financial needs will be covered if you're no longer able to provide for them. You'll need the most life insurance when your kids are growing-enough to last them until they become adults and cover their college education. This is even more important if you're the main breadwinner.
Consider raising or lowering your coverage when: You get married or divorcedYou have a babyYour children become financially independentYour children finish collegeYour long-term goals changeWork LifeThe general rule for life insurance is that your policy's "death benefit" (the amount that gets paid to your beneficiaries if you die) should pay seven times your annual salary. The idea is that as your salary changes, your family's lifestyle changes to match. If you're self-employed or own a business, you might also have business-related expenses to cover.
Think about adjusting your policy when: Your salary changesYou start or sell a businessYour spouse's job changes


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