Life insurance can be emotional topic for families, NBC reporter Jill Schlesinger covers why it’s important to talk about and what you need to know for buying.

It’s this week’s Steals and Deals.

To determine if you need life insurance, ask yourself this question: If I were to die now, would anyone endure a financial hardship?

If the answer is yes out how much coverage to buy using an online calculator. You’ll want to purchase a policy that will cover your loved ones’ living expenses — and if you’re the primary caretaker for your kids or adult parents, factor in the additional cost of care for them too.

You may want to also set aside additional cash to pay off debts; and if you want to pre-fund college or provide for future retirement needs of your surviving spouse, don’t forget to add that in too.

Then you have to decide between either a term life or permanent life insurance policy. Term life is often more affordable, but the coverage is only in force for a set number of years and expires when the term is up.

Permanent life insurance is much more expensive than term because it covers you for your entire life.

The policy can build value over time and, you may be able to access the funds while you’re still living, or it could be a benefit to loved ones when you pass away.