What if I told you that we usually reach adulthood without a realistic sense of our family’s finances and are not having the necessary ‘courageous conversations’ about money because information-based money discussions are ‘off limits’?
Think about this for a moment, how prepared would you be for some of the harsher realities of life such as a critical or terminal illness, disability or the sudden death of a loved one?
At this point you might be thinking, why are these important conversations to have and why should I care? What if I told you that:
- 1 in 3 families admit a financial disaster would be more than likely, if not absolutely, within a single month should the household’s breadwinner suddenly pass.
- Life insurance is one of the more critical forms of financial leverage in any financial plan, yet it tends to take a back seat.
- Among those with life insurance, about 1 in 5 say that they do not have enough.
- Consumers overestimate the cost of life insurance, especially younger generations; 44 percent of Millennials overestimate the cost at five times the actual amount.
- Only 4 in 10 American adults have a will or living trust.
- There were nearly 40 million Americans with a disability in 2015, representing 12.6% of the civilian non-institutionalized population.
- Over 37 million Americans are classified as disabled; about 12% of the total population.
- 55% of all adult Americans do not have a will ***
Would these stats make you stop and pay attention?
I became a widow in sixty seconds when my 39-year-old husband was killed in a tragic accident. My second husband became a widower when his wife died of cancer only nine months after being diagnosed. My daughter lost her father at the age of 12 and has now spent over half of her life without him.
Today my goal in life is to dispel the myth ‘it might happen to you but it won’t happen to me’ because inevitably it will happen to all of us. I am on a journey to share our real life experiences and my extensive financial services knowledge with the world.
Here are nine of many tips to help you today, to put yourself in control of your life both personally and financially:
- Meet with a financial advisor and review your situation to determine the appropriate plan(s) you need to put in place for you and your family
- Make sure you have the appropriate types and amount(s) of insurance. Think about things such as (but not limited to):
If you have a stay at home spouse/partner make sure you have sufficient coverage on their life
- Make sure you have coverage in the event of a critical illness or disability so the household/monthly/business bills will continue to be covered
- Look into long term care insurance to cover you in the event you are not able to take care of your own daily living habits
If you already have a financial plan when was the last time you met with your advisor for a full review to make sure everything is relevant to your situation today
- Make sure all of your beneficiary designations are current and up-to-date on all of your insurance policies, RRSP’s, group insurance plans, etc.
- Meet with a lawyer to get your wills drawn up. This is not the place for a Do-It-Yourself fix
- If you already have a will in place, is it up to date? Things have a way of changing over time so you need to review to make sure your wishes are still covered and current.
This life is all we have and there is only one for each of us. I encourage you to take the time to sit down and have the courageous conversations with those you love, while you can, and put the necessary safety net in place to take care of yourself and your loved one’s futures before anything happens.
*(LIMRA) ** (Canadian Bar Association) *** (Harris Interactive ®)
About the Author
Jane Blaufus, CLU
Best Selling Author | International Speaker | Business Coach
Jane’s bestselling book WITH THE [STROKE] OF A PEN: Claim your life and companion planning binder have been highly acclaimed as two of the most comprehensive, actionable, personal and financial planning resources available for families, individuals and business owners alike.
She brings to the table 25+ years of financial services expertise as a financial advisor, sales manager and corporate executive. Today she is the Principal of The Blaufus Group Inc., based in Toronto, Canada.
Jane is a sought after international keynote speaker delivering a highly rated MDRT Vancouver 2016 focus session. She was also a featured speaker on the main platform at the MDRT PEAK 2017 Convention in Pattaya, Thailand. Jane is a frequent guest expert on national TV/Radio, and a Huffington Post blogger. She is also a faculty member, recommended speaker and coach for the Hoopis Performance Network.
Her reputation and expertise make her an influential business coach to financial advisors and managers. Jane believes that to excel in today’s competitive sales environment, the key to success is relationship building and she walks the walk and talks the talk.
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