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Figure Out How Much Life Insurance You Need

Calculator Get a personal estimate in 6 minutes or less.

Insuring Your Family's Needs

To Maintain Your Family's Lifestyle

The younger your dependents, the more insurance you need.

You don’t need life insurance if you don’t have dependents.  But if you do, your survivors typically need about 70% of your family’s take home pay should a breadwinner die.

A QUICK ESTIMATE figures the insurance needed to cover that amount from now until retirement.

A DIFFERENT PLAN uses insurance to pay off debts and meet your savings objectives.  This could leave your family debt-free, with the money it needs for college, a reserve, and other objectives & needing less income to cover its remaining expenses.

  • This usually requires less insurance than the QUICK ESTIMATE.
  • It could require more if you’re not saving enough to meet your objectives – but your objectives would be met.

Please fill all required fields
    header-marker Quick Estimate    
    header-orange Enter Your Ages, Take-Home Pay, and Other Income   
    header-column  Age Take-Home Pay Other Income TOTAL
    input You 
    input Spouse
    text Note: The insurance needs of a single parent are too complicated for this program.     
    header-orange Quick Estimate: Insurance Needed    
    header-small To Cover the Shortfall to Retirement (+ $10,000 for burial expenses)
    header-column  Monthly Shortfall Retirement Age Months To Retirement Insurance Needed
    input results-small If you die 
    input results-small If your spouse dies
    header-orange Quick Estimate: Insurance You Need to Buy
    header-small Subtract Insurance You Already Have
    header-column   From Your Employer Other Insurance  Insurance to Buy
    input results-small On your life
    input results-small On your spouse 
    header-marker A Different Plan    
    header-orange Use Insurance to Pay Off Debts & Meet Savings Objectives
    header-small Enter your debts and monthly payments & saving goals and monthly saving
    text We'll estimate the insurance you need to buy – first on your life and then on your spouse’s life – to pay off the debts & meet the objectives you "CHECK TO INCLUDE" and to provide any income your family might need to cover its remaining expenses. 
    header-column Debts Amount Owed Monthly Payment Check to Include
    input results-small Mortgage *
    input results-small Student Loans 
    input results-small Other Debts *
    input results-small Total
    header-column Savings Objectives * Saving Goal  Monthly  Saving Check to Include
    input results-small Kid's Education
    input results-small Reserve & Other Goals
    input results-small Total  
    header-small If you use insurance to pay off these debts and meet these goals   
    header-column  Insurance Needed  Cut in Monthly Expenses
    header-orange How Much Insurance You Need
    header-small First on Your Life, Then on Your Spouse's Life
    text Should your family have an income SURPLUS, you could uncheck a debt or savings objective that insurance would meet - to reduce the surplus & insurance you need.
    header-small Insurance Needed  
    billboard-small To Pay Debts & Meet Objectives Insurance to Cover Shortfall Total Insurance Needed
    header-small * Notes:    
    text MORTGAGE: If you rent, you could cut that expense if your family uses insurance to buy a home.  So enter the amount needed to buy a home under "Amount Owed." Your family would not eliminate the entire rental payment, as homeowners have additional expenses such as taxes, upkeep, and insurance.  So enter about two-thirds of your rent as the “Monthly Payment” buying a home would eliminate.
    text OTHER DEBTS: Don't include auto loans if your family will take out new car loans and have new car payments in the future – even if you pay off your current car loans. 
    text SAVINGS OBJECTIVES: We do not include retirement as a savings objective for two reasons:
    text-bullets If you save for retirement in a 401(k) with an employer match, as most people do, you are generally better off continuing to contribute rather than using insurance to meet your retirement savings needs.
    text-bullets If the survivor inherits the retirement savings of a spouse who dies, this also frees up amounts currently being saved for retirement. 
    header-marker Advanced    
    header-orange Change our assumptions to better match your situation
    header-small How Much Your Family Will Need
    text The survivor in a couple typically needs about 70% of current take home pay.  
    text A family with children typically needs about 80% should a breadwinner die, but gets Social Security survivor benefits for unmarried children under age 18.  If you like, go to http://www.ssa.gov/estimator/ to see what your family would get.  Enter the amount and we'll estimate the percentage of current take home pay your family would need in addition to Social Security benefits. 
    input results-small Social Security survivor child benefits:
    input results-small Enter how much your family would need: 
    text Note: Your family will need MORE income if it will hire help, LESS if the surviving spouse will earn more.  This calculator does not consider these issues. 
    header-small Medical Insurance
    text If medical insurance is not paid out of "take-home" pay, estimate the added cost (say with the survivor's employer plan) and we'll add that to your family's needs.
    input results-small Added cost should YOU die: 
    input results-small Added cost should YOUR SPOUSE die: 
    Powered By SpreadsheetConverter (6.0.4287.4287)

    Under the Covers

    How We Make Projections & Our Disclaimer

    Investment of Insurance Proceeds:  We assume insurance proceeds used to provide an income for your family are invested in safe assets, with an interest rate equal to the rate of inflation, as your family will be less able to bear risk.

    DISCLAIMER: The information provided on the SquaredAway website is for educational purposes only.  It is not intended to provide personal financial advice.


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