By Deborah Nayrocker
Dear Deborah: My husband and I have two preschoolers. I stay home and take care of our children, which I hope to continue doing. What can we do to prevent any big money hassles in the future? –Erin
Answer: We never know for sure what our future may bring. A car may need to be replaced or there may be cutbacks at work. There are three important things you can do now to plan for your family’s wellbeing:
- Build an emergency fund. Aim for three to six months’ worth of living expenses, so you don’t need to borrow or beg when you’re faced with some tough financial circumstances. Recently in a television interview three homeless families were asked what they would have done differently. Without any hesitation, they all said they would have saved more.
- Write a will. If you don’t have a will, consider getting one soon. It helps protect your assets. A will also designates a guardian for your minor children and names an executor.
- Buy life insurance that covers both you and your husband. This protects the family income and net worth upon the passing of income providers. Consider buying life insurance equal to five to 10 times your family’s annual income. Your husband may already have some employee coverage. Get low-cost term insurance which usually offers the best benefit for your premium. Look for a reputable insurance company with good-quality ratings. Insurers generally have ratings from A.M. Best, Standard & Poor’s, or Moody’s.
Deborah Nayrocker is an author and columnist. She is the award-winning author of The Art of Debt-Free Living and Living a Balanced Financial Life.
Copyright by Deborah J. Nayrocker. All rights reserved.