College students are graduating deeper in debt than ever, as tuition and fees keep escalating while family incomes stagnate. The average student debt jumped to nearly $30,000 for the Class of 2012, compared to $26,000 in 2011, according to the Project on Student Debt at The Institute for College Access and Success. Average student loans in 2012 were even higher for newly minted physicians ($167,000), veterinarians ($152,000), and attorneys ($125,000).
If you’re a young professional with debts on this scale, you might well find it difficult to pay off these loans during the early years of your career, before you earn enough to build up savings. If you died before paying your loans, who would be responsible for the balance? Although federally financed student debts are forgiven in case of the borrower’s death, the burden of payment for a private loan would fall on your family or the guarantor (co-signer) of the loan – most likely your parents.
Not to worry. A term life insurance policy can cover this risk, so your loved ones won’t take a financial hit when they’re already reeling from grief. The policy will cover you for a fixed period, such as 10, 15, 20 or 30 years. You can either buy coverage for as long as the loans are likely to be paid off, or have a co-signer (for example, your mother) purchase a policy on your life, with herself as the beneficiary.
You can obtain this financial peace of mind for pennies a day. A 20-year, $250,000 term life policy for a healthy 30-year-old costs only about $150 a year, according to LIMRA, a life insurance trade group.
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