Monday, March 28, 2011

Being prepared

I've learned that a lot of the trouble people get into financially has to do with not being prepared. I know it's impossible to be prepared for every situation, but there are ways to be proactive and setting things up as a way 'protection' from unexpected circumstances.

The first, is to have life insurance and no matter what your age or income level, it's affordable and should be done. The most specific advice I've heard is this: 1. Always get term life insurance, 2. A 15 year term policy, 3. Get it in the amount of 10x your income, 4. Don't get it tied up through your job- use your jobs as an extra, not your only. term life insurance is affordable and can cost less then $20/mo for most plans.

Along with that, it's good to have your will and paperwork all lined up so that your loved ones can find things quickly and know how you'd like them.

The next one takes more effort, but will save a lot of stress when things get difficult. We have heard this one A LOT in the last few years from financial advisors-an emergency fund! The most common numbers I've heard is 3-6 months worth of income. It certainly takes a while to build it up, but it'll be great to have money set aside for things you didn't plan on. It's one of the best ways to keep you from going into debt when a crisis occurs too.

We don't have a huge savings put away yet, but that is the next step after we are out of debt. We do have life insurance, but our income has changed so when the term is up we will need to adjust the policy some.

Are you prepared for the unexpected? It only takes a few days to get these things in order, don't put it off until it is too late.

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