Minggu, 31 Januari 2010

Tough Economy? Don't Waste Money on Health Insurance

Health Insurance is imperative for your daily savings and expenses. One can fall ill at any unexpected time, causing misery and most importantly, if you are not covered with any health insurance policy, it can prove to be quite expensive on the pocket. Economy is bad these days. Every penny saved goes towards your savings, and can help you better prepare for your future. If ever a situation arises where you are compelled to spend this money, especially for health reasons, it can surely upset your balance. Lowering your expenses is highly important. One of the easiest ways to save money is through getting an insurance package to protect yourself and your family at times of need.

Most people often find it expensive to opt for a health insurance. They are of the notion that they would rather spend this money if ever any health issue arises. If you are an average ordinary person, consider a time in a month where you have just paid your monthly bills, had your mortgage settled out, and are just satisfied with the way things have turned out. But things may go wrong if you fall ill all of a sudden. Remember, we set apart an amount of money for all of our expenses except for health related issues. It is not uncommon. People tend to save money on literally everything, but just couldn’t afford to save a few hundred dollars for their own health.

Health Insurance may not be as expensive as one would think. Over the years, various health insurance companies have evolved with interesting health and medical insurance packages that are easier on the pocket, all the while providing top quality service. Unlike the previous days, we are provided with an opportunity to compare and select different health insurance and life insurance packages that appeal to us the most. Now for a few hundred dollars a month, you can insure your whole family against unpredictable circumstances and provide them with quality treatment facilities. Compare this to the actual costs that may be incurred during some serious illness. We are talking about thousands of dollars saved.

HSA or Health Savings Account is another option of saving money on health insurance. HSA lets you gain the full advantage of health insurance plans, and also provides you with competitive tax benefits. HSA is more like a savings account, where you are required to invest a few hundred dollars monthly. You will get a fixed interest on this money, and the money being invested in HSA is absolutely tax free. Also, there is nothing known as maturity of the insurance plan, and you can withdraw any amount of money for your medical expenses from your HSA anytime you want. All you will need is to pay off the deficient amount in the subsequent monthly payments. Health Savings Account is just another reason to save money for your extra needs.

Compare HSA plans that are suitable for you and that is quite affordable to accommodate your daily expenditure and savings. Research is the major part of saving money on insurance. It is always important to look up the various rates and packages of health insurance providers, and they provide you with an easy to use interface to research and select free quotes from some of the top notch health insurance companies.

It would also be worthwhile to keep a regular check and update on the health insurance rates of the present day market. You wouldn’t want to end up paying extra, especially at times when the economy requires you to save as much money as possible. For this, you could re-evaluate your insurance rates and packages every six to twelve months, or you can also go in for short duration insurance packages. Either way, never ever forget that you have a health insurance package, and take care to avoid any defaults. Insurance companies usually associate a “*” along with their terms and conditions which states that you are supposed to be making payments at prescribed intervals, or you lose all the benefits. Pay your premiums on time and stay protected anytime and anywhere.

What Are The Different Types Of Boat Insurance Available?

What Are The Different Types Of Boat Insurance Available?

When shopping for boat insurance, you may be surprised to find that there are different types of boat insurance policies available. Many insurance companies will only offer one standard watercraft liability coverage policy, while others will offer optional coverage that you can purchase. In fact, if you have financed your boat, your lender may require you to carry specific optional coverage. There are several different types of coverage that you can add to your policy.

The standard insurance is the watercraft liability insurance coverage which is required by many states. This insurance will cover you in the event that damage is caused to another person or another person's property by actions taken with your boat – whether it is during transport or on the water. Again, many states now require this liability coverage, and each state has its own requirements as to how much liability coverage you need to have. Check with your insurance agent to find out what you are required to have.

Watercraft medical payments coverage may also be required in your state. This coverage pays the medical expenses, up to a specific amount, for you and any occupant of your boat which results from a covered accident. Even if this insurance is not required, you should definitely consider it. Medical expenses are quite high. If you think that you cannot afford this coverage, think about whether or not you could afford the medical bills you will have in the event of an accident without the coverage.

Wreck removal and pollution coverage should also be strongly considered. By law, if your vessel is wrecked or sinks, you will be required to remove it. If oil or gas leaks into the lake, river, or ocean, you will be fined – just like the big oil companies are fined when they have spills in the ocean! These fines, as well as the wreckage removal and spill cleanup can be quite expensive without this coverage. Don't make the mistake of thinking that something like this won't happen to you!

You should insure yourself against uninsured watercrafts as well. This works just like uninsured motorist insurance when you purchase coverage for your automobiles. If someone who does not have insurance – or adequate coverage – collides with your boat on the water, your insurance will pay for the replacement of your boat, or for the needed repairs.

Towing and assistance coverage should also be strongly considered. Getting towed back to shore often costs more than having a car towed to a garage! Especially if you are out in the middle of the ocean! You should also ask about coverage to recover your boat and protect it from further damage after a mechanical failure or an accident. These costs do indeed add up. Again, don't make the mistake of thinking that nothing bad will happen, and don't make the mistake of thinking that you cannot afford the coverage. If you can't afford the coverage, you certainly won't be able to afford these expenses!

Most insurance policies should cover your boat, the motor, and the trailer used to transport the boat. Liability coverage isn't the only type of coverage that you need in most cases. You should make sure that you protect your boat, just as you protect your automobiles with coverage that includes theft and vandalism, as well as losses caused by storms, fire, sinking, capsizing, stranding, collision, and even explosions. Talk with your insurance agent to find out what type of insurance is required by your state and what type of coverage they offer. Also talk with your boat dealer and lender to find out what type of coverage you are required to have as well.

CopyRight Ian D. Major 2005.

Sabtu, 30 Januari 2010

What Should Your Homeowners Insurance Cover?

There are many things to consider when purchasing your home insurance, here are a few things to look for when finding the right policy.

Home Owners Liability Coverage

Liability insurance is very important to a homeowner's coverage because it helps protect the owner and the family from financial disaster if someone files a claim against the homeowner's policy, sues the homeowner or if the courts hold the homeowner legally responsible for someone else's injury or property damage. The standard liability limit for most policies is $100,000, but many people believe that additional protection is needed , especially if the homeowner has sizable assets.

For a small increase in premium, an additional $300,000 to $500,000 may be obtained. Liability coverage protects in three ways: Personal liability, damage to the property of others, and medical expenses for injury to others.

Another way to protect one's assets is to consider an Umbrella Policy which usually adds $1 million (or possibly more) in excess liability coverage to the homeowner's property and automobile insurance policies. It also covers claims excluded from most basic policies such as libel, slander, defamation and mental anguish.

For example, most policies provide liability coverage that covers not only accidents that occur on the insured property but accidents that occur elsewhere. If the family dog bites a neighbor in front of another neighbor's house, for example, the dog owner's homeowner's policy will usually compensate the neighbor for injuries and necessary medical expenses. For more information on home owners insurance visit our specialist site below.

Theft Off Premises

Most policies automatically insure against the loss of personal property even if that property is not on the insured premises when it is lost. If one goes to the airport with several suitcases and they are stolen, this is probably covered. Talk with your agent and/or your insurance company for details.

Additional Living Expenses

Another automatic benefit of which many homeowners are unaware is coverage for living expenses if the covered premises is damaged to the point of being uninhabitable. Not only should the policy pay for the cost to repair the damage to the dwelling, but it should also reimburse the homeowner for the additional expenses of living elsewhere while the repairs are being made.

What Can A Homeowner Do To Be Prepared?

How does someone find out what is and what is not covered? Read the policy carefully. It's not likely to be fun reading, but the good news is that if one reads and understands his or her policy before it is needed, this knowledge may save unexpected financial losses should a problem occur. It is always best to talk with one's insurance agent or the company that issued the policy for details.

Understanding your home owners insurance policy is best handled before a claim is made. In the case of the contents, an inventory of items room by room is important to have with information such as the date purchased, serial number, the original cost of each item and a brief description. Video tape or still photos is very helpful along with the inventory. These items should be stored in a safe place such as a safety deposit box in a bank or savings and loan institution and not in the home because if the home is destroyed, the chances are the inventory and related photos or tape may also be destroyed.

Kamis, 28 Januari 2010

Why Sports Cars Cost More To Insure

Have you ever wondered why sports cars cost more to insure than other types of car – even when the purchase price of the sports car is less expensive?  If so, the following are the main reasons why this is the case.

Car Insurance Group Categories

While many of the factors that determine the make-up of car insurance quotes are not known, what is known is that insurance companies ‘group’ certain types of cars into categories.  For this purposes, insurance companies have groups ranging from 1 through to 20.  Group 1 is the least expensive type of car to insure.  Group 20 is the most expensive type of car to insure.  So, if you buy a Fiat Panda, you’ll be classed a Group 1 car driver.  Buy a sports car, any sports car, and you are looking at being classed a Group 15 and above driver.  Buy a performance sports car, such as a Porsche 911, and you’ll definitely be Group 20 driver!


Over 2 million car crimes happen in the UK each and every year.  Aside from popular model cars, such a Ford, the biggest car crime category is sports cars!  Have a soft-top convertible sports car, and the chances of it being stolen are red hot!  So, even if you live out in the countryside with no one else around for miles, you will still be seen as driving an extremely high risk car when it comes to car theft.  With increased risk, comes an increased premium!


Insurance companies are not charities – they’re in the business to make money.  As such, they keep vast amounts of data and part of that data tells them that if you drive a sports car there is an increased risk you’ll be in an accident and that the accident will be more serious (and costly) than if you were driving a regular car.  As such, the premium charge is going to be higher.

Under 30?

Unless you have just won the Lottery, if you are under 30 there are no appealing factors when it comes to insuring a sports car.  Not only do the insurance company see the car you drive as being a high risk car to insure, but you as the driver are far more risky to insure as well.  Consequently, car insurance premiums for those 30 years of age or under, driving sports cars, is probably the highest of all types of car insurance available in the UK today.

Rabu, 27 Januari 2010

Whole Life Insurance Advice—Is It Better?

If you have decided that whole life insurance is the route you want to take, you need to be well-aware of both its pros and its cons.

Whole life insurance covers you for your entire life, as opposed to term life insurance which only covers you for a certain number of years. However, with that additional coverage comes additional costs. Isn’t that the way things always happen? With whole life insurance, not only are you paying for the cost of the insurance, but you are also paying for the cost of investment. Some have referred to the investment costs as “forced savings,” and, admittedly, there are ways of saving for retirement that make more sense to some. As you get older, the cost of insurance coverage gets higher and the cost of investment gets lower. If you decide to cash in your whole life insurance policy, you may be paid in cash or in insurance that has been paid-up. Yet, with commission fees, market fluctuations, and hypothetical numbers that agents use for illustration purposes, it is not so easy to know how much you will cash in.

Still, there are many wealthy people who opt to purchase whole life insurance policies, and for a good reason. Whole life insurance policies help them in estate planning. By setting up an insurance trust through whole life insurance, they can make sure the proceeds of their insurance policy are used to pay their estate taxes. This is helpful, as estate taxes would otherwise be left to be paid out-of-pocket.

After understanding whole life insurance, it might not seem as safe and secure as its name sounds. Yes, you will be covered for life, but there are also additional costs for coverage that some people just do not need. If you have the extra money to invest in whole life insurance, by setting up an insurance trust, you won’t exactly be wasting money, either.

Why Should You Get Life Insurance?

Everything in life is uncertain that people should prepare for any eventuality. In fact, the only things certain in life are taxes and death. One or both of these things are bound to happen at some point in a person’s life. While taxes will always be present in every society, death can come like a thief in the night.

Sickness and death are frightening as it is. They become all the more frightening when a person has not prepared for such an eventuality. This is the reason why every person should get a life insurance.

People should always plan their finances and getting a life insurance is one way of planning their finances. Getting a life insurance is just like saving up for the future because there are life insurance policies that provide for a cash value in the event that the insurance is not used up by the person insured. Under this provision, the insured can withdraw or borrow from his insurance policy. It also means preparing for the future of the people you love in case something happens to you.

A life insurance can come a long way in helping dependents who experience the death of a loved one. When the bread winner dies, these dependents have no one to turn to but if the bread winner has a life insurance, then he is assured that he will leave his dependents with something to hang on until such time when they are already capable of fending for themselves.

Any person who has an income should get a life insurance not only to serve as a lifeline for their dependents. A life insurance can also take of the death-related expenses of the deceased including expenses for the funeral and even for probate of his will.

Some people are not as lucky as others and they will not be able to leave mansions and lands to their dependents. With a life insurance policy, a parent can now leave even a meager inheritance to his dependents or beneficiaries.

Getting a life insurance policy is very important especially for people who have dependents, particularly very young children who are not yet able to work and fend for themselves. The amount of life insurance a person should get should be based on the number of dependents he has and also on his paying capacity.

A person interested in getting a life insurance policy can choose from several kinds of insurance---the term insurance and the whole life insurance are examples. A term insurance is paid out by the insurer after the death of the insured. A whole life insurance is much more complicated and involves a lot of provisions and benefits.

No matter what kind of insurance you want to get, every person should look at the possibility of getting a life insurance. This will assure them that their loved ones would be taken care of in the event that they are no longer there to support them.

Selasa, 26 Januari 2010

Your Guide To Retirement Planning

Title: In life, nothing is permanent in this world. Everything that comes will definitely go. That is why it is best to put our best foot forward and save more for the future. The best thing that you have to start with is to have a retirement plan.

Some wait to long before they decide to plan for their future. This is not a good idea because we can never tell what lies ahead. So, here's how and when to start retirement planning:

1. The retirement year.

First, decide on what year you would like to retire. It is always best to start something with a goal in hand. This will keep you focused and determined to push it through.

2. Do your homework.

The best way to help you start making your retirement planning is to consult your “employer-sponsored 401(k) or IRA,” or to any of your retirement schemes and investigate on the objective date of your mutual funds and see if it matches your target date of retirement. If it does, then start funding your nest egg immediately.

3. Backups.

There are many instances where your plan can backfire. So, it is best to have backups.

So, when making a retirement plan, better include a backup that will serve as a fallback in case your nest eggs fails or if something else goes wrong. It is best that you do not depend entirely on your funds because sometimes there are circumstances that are beyond our control.

3. Opt for annuities.

When doing a retirement planning, you should take note also of the different retirement planning strategies that will surely make your plan work. One good example of a retirement planning strategy is the annuities.

Basically, annuities are adaptable indemnity bonds that are exclusively patterned to bestow additional wages at the same time assist you accomplish “long-term” saving goals.

These annuities are the “long-term’ items recommended by most insurance companies, though, there are brokers and other financial establishments that provide this kind of service. They will help you set-up a specific goal and aim for it.

There are two types of annuity: the immediate and the tax-deferred annuity.

In the immediate annuity, you start your retirement planning by giving a hefty amount of money to the insurance company or any financial institution for that matter. After which, your payment scheme will start at once. This type of annuity is usually applicable to those who are already 60 years old and above.

On the other hand, the tax-deferred annuities you may choose whether you will pay the retirement amount instantly or make a monthly disbursement until the time you reach your target date.

This is usually appropriate to those who start their retirement planning early, generally those who are 20 years old at the least.

4. Consider the Modified Endowment Contracts.

Annuities had been heading the limelight for so many years now. Most people would go for annuities, as this is the most popular retirement planning strategy. However, like most plans, it is still vulnerable to problems and crisis. That is why, it is best to make an alternative option when making a retirement planning.

The next best retirement planning strategy is the Modified Endowment Contract or the MEC. This is, basically, one kind of “insurance policy.”

In reality, MEC is similar to annuity, especially the tax-deferred annuity, in terms of the preliminary premium rates. Though, they differ in terms of tax codes.

In annuity, the tax code appears to be very unfavourable especially when the benefactor dies while the “annuity accumulation” stage is in full force. This, in turn, makes the deferred wage taxes on development suddenly becomes payable.

In contrast, the MEC resolves this problem by providing the benefactor or the beneficiaries with an “insurance rider” included in the agreement. The “insurance rider” is made to hand over the full amount to your recipients absolutely free from any taxes.

Moreover, MECs can give you the suppleness of choosing between the variable and fixed account preferences. This, in turn, will make your retirement planning relatively easier.

Nevertheless, whatever retirement planning strategy you choose, the bottom line is that it is really important to save for your retirement as soon as possible.

Most often than not, people linger on a little longer before they start making their retirement planning. This should not be the case because you can never tell what will happen next.

As they say, life is suspense; you will never know what it can offer you until the end. So, the best time to do retirement planning is now.

Senin, 25 Januari 2010

You Can Do What With Your IRA!?

Copyright 2006 Damon Clifford

Everyone knows you can invest in stocks, bonds, and mutual funds with your IRA.  About 97% of the trillions of dollars of IRA funds are invested in these types of assets.  Did you know you can also invest your IRA funds into non-traditional assets like real estate, energy, and tax liens?


Yes, you can invest your IRA funds into a house, a duplex, or a commercial building along with many other non-traditional assets.  A lot of people are choosing these types of investments to better diversify their retirement portfolio.  These are the people that don’t want to see their portfolio rise and fall dramatically due to stock market fluctuations.

Any good broker will tell you to keep your portfolio diversified with many different stocks, bonds, and mutual funds.  More savvy investors say to keep your portfolio diversified with many different assets such as stocks, bonds, mutual funds, energy & real estate.  Some of their portfolio’s actually increased during the most recent bear market!  This was due to their portfolio’s being truly diversified.

There are two main reasons that more and more people are choosing to invest a portion of their IRA funds in non-traditional assets.  First, they don’t know or trust the stock market since it has performed poorly the last couple of years, and nobody can predict what the market will do over the next 5, 10, or 20 years.  Second, they may or may not know what certain companies are doing on the other side of the country, but they do know about that “hot” piece of property just around the corner that would be a great rental house!

One of the added benefits to a self directed IRA is investing in assets that you know, and understand.  The more you know and understand, the better judgment you can make in your own investments.

Once the self directed IRA is set up, you have investment control of the funds. You can use the funds to purchase the house and the income from rent will go back into your IRA. If you decide to sell the house, the capital gains from the sell will go back into your IRA as well. Depending on the type of IRA you have your gains can be either taxed deferred or tax free!

With the self directed IRA, you are in control. Many people are using the self directed IRA to take control of their retirement investments.

Stocks, bonds, and mutual funds still need to be in your portfolio to be diversified, but it’s important to understand that you do have choices outside the stock market!

What You May Not Know About Automobile Insurance

Perhaps the most commonly purchased type of insurance is automobile insurance, also called driver’s insurance or car insurance.   Although laws vary somewhat, virtually all states today require drivers to carry some sort of automobile insurance to legally operate a vehicle on public roads.  The penalties for driving without insurance can range from fines to a suspended license or, in the case of repeated infractions, possibly even a short jail sentence.  Given that driver’s insurance is required in pretty much every state, it’s worth having some basic knowledge about the subject.

Types and levels of Coverage

The type of insurance coverage a person needs, and how much they will pay for that coverage, vary depending on a number of factors, such as the age of the driver, his or her driving record, the age and value of the vehicle, the dollar amount of the coverage, and whether the vehicle is fully paid for.  While auto insurance can get pretty complex, there are four types that everyone should be aware of. 

Liability coverage is the most basic type of coverage; it protects the driver against any claims that might be brought after an accident or other incident that is the driver’s fault.  This is usually the minimum coverage that a driver needs to be considered insured.  Liability insurance usually has the lowest premiums, but it doesn’t cover any damage to the driver’s own vehicle; thus a lower monthly premium needs to be balanced against the risk of a potentially large financial burden.  Also, most loan lenders require a driver to carry comprehensive coverage until the borrower has paid off the loan in full.

Collision insurance covers part or all of the cost of repairs to the driver’s vehicle in the event of a collision, based on an estimate of the project cost for the repairs.  While collision insurance can definitely pay for itself in the even of a car crash, the monthly premiums are higher than simple liability.  Most policies are also subject to a deductible, which means that the policy carrier is responsible for paying a set amount before the insurance company pays.  Deductibles vary widely; generally speaking, though, the higher the deductible, the lower the monthly payments, and the lower the deductible, the higher the monthly payments will be.
Comprehensive coverage is typically required for vehicles that are still in the process of being paid for.  Many vehicle owners also carry comprehensive coverage for expensive or otherwise valuable vehicles.  Comprehensive coverage covers damage that isn’t the result of a collision – fire, theft, vandalism, and so on – although the exact items covered can vary quite a bit from one policy to the next.

Uninsured Coverage protects you if an uninsured or underinsured driver hits you or your vehicle.  Although insurance is a legal requirement in most places, that doesn’t mean that everyone on the road is insured.  This type of coverage means that you won’t get stuck with the repair bill if someone less responsible than you involves you in an accident.

Each type of insurance is available at several different levels of coverage; the higher the coverage (in dollars), the higher the premium will be.  Premiums will also increase if the driver is involved in an accident or receives tickets for traffic infractions.  Additionally, premiums are higher for males than for females, for younger drivers, and for drivers in urban or higher-crime areas.  Despite this, however, automobile insurance is a necessity for any responsible driver.

Minggu, 24 Januari 2010

Using Life Insurance Wisely

Every family should have a life insurance policy on at least one of the financial providers. A policy should always be in place in case one of the primary breadwinners passes away so that the family will be able to support itself if no other source of income is available after the breadwinner dies.

Estate or “Death” taxes can be as high as 55% when the insurance policyholder dies. Many families cannot afford to pay these steep taxes and still maintain the lifestyle that they are accustomed to. Therefore, we have compiled a few tips to help ensure that your family can maximize the benefits they receive from your life insurance policy - and avoid giving so much of it to the government.

First of all, you should know that a portion of your estate will be given to your beneficiaries with a tax exclusion. The number of dollars covered by the exclusion each year varies, but here’s a brief overview: in 2004 and 2005, the exclusion was $1.5 million per person. From 2006 through 2008, the exclusion is $2 million, and, in 2009, the exclusion is $3.5 million. The estate tax is repealed for the year 2010, but the tax returns with an exclusion of $1 million in the year 2011. Now, that can get confusing!

Because the government can take so much of your estate for taxes, it’s important to shield as much as possible with the use of a variety of Trusts. One such Trust is the Irrevocable Life Insurance Trust, otherwise known as the ILIT.

When you establish an ILIT, you will name a trustee to manage that trust. Your trustee can be your financial advisor or a beneficiary. Your trustee will purchase a life insurance contract on your life. Upon your death, the policy’s death benefit will provide liquidity of the assets in your Trust.

With your ILIT, you can control how the estate is divided and spent. Having the ability to control your own estate, post-mortem, may prove to be especially helpful if you have young adults who are going to receive a sizeable sum of money. You can, for example, enumerate which funds will be spent for education, which for costs of living, and which for other activities. Thus, you can allocate portions of your estate for any activities you wish.

You can also transfer ownership of the life insurance policy you already own. However, there are complications that may arise from the transfer. You will want to consult a qualified attorney to ensure that you fully understand how the system works. For example, if you die within three (3) years of transferring ownership of your existing policy, the life insurance policy will be taxed as part of your estate.

With the right help, figuring out how to handle life insurance (and your estate in general) doesn’t have to be difficult or complicated. Consult a qualified attorney for more information on how to set up your ILIT or other Trusts so that your beneficiaries can receive the most benefit from your assets.

Sabtu, 23 Januari 2010

Types Of Healthcare Plan

There is a lot said about health care these days. With costs rising and no end in sight there is a bigger need than ever for everyone to have the coverage of a health care plan. Health car plans are basically like insurance that helps you cover medical costs. Like any insurance they are sometimes difficult to understand.

There are many types of health care plans available. Each type breaks down into two basic groups: group or individual. Group plans are the least expensive option. They are provided through an employer. Individual plans are offered through private companies and can cost much more than group plans because there are no group discounts to the provider. Within each group there are a few different type of health care plans.

Fee for service plans are the most common and traditional forms of health care coverage. With a fee service the covered individual gets many choices of doctors and hospitals. The insurance provider pays for a portion of your costs while you pay a fee. You pay both a monthly fee for coverage and fees based on the care you receive. Many times there is a deductible that must be met before the insurance provider pays anything. Most plans also have a maximum amount you will pay out of pocket. Once this figure is reached your costs are covered 100%.

Health maintenance organizations or HMO’s are another type of health care plan. HMO’s charge a monthly fee. You are required to use certain doctors who are signed up with the HMO. You pay a fee for any costs you incur called a co-payment. The total costs of any medical care is negotiated between the doctor and the HMO so the costs are lower.

Preferred provider organizations or PPO’s are a combination of the fee based plan and an HMO. There are limits on the doctors and hospitals you can choose, you make a co-payment for each service and you may have a deductible. You can, however, use a doctor that is not part of the PPO. You will still get coverage but you may end up paying a larger fee.

There are other forms of health care plans. The government offer two plans: Medicare and Medicaid. Medicare is a plan for people over age 65 or disabled. The coverage provided by Medicare often changes and can be confusing. There are different types of Medicaid. There is a free type and a fee based type. Medicaid is another government offered plan. It is based on income. With Medicaid all of your expenses are covered. New changes have made it so some care requires a very small fee. There are also variations in Medicaid. To find out information a person should contact their local government human services agency.

Health care plans can be very confusing. Talking with your provider will help ensure you completely understand how your plan works and what coverage is provided.

Jumat, 22 Januari 2010

The Top 10 Ways to Lower Your Health Care Costs

If your medical expenses are increasing, you’ll want to know how to lower them and keep them low. Here are 10 easy ways to reduce your health care costs.

1. Maintain a health lifestyle — it sounds basic, but it really works. If you take advantage of available wellness programs, maintain a healthy weight, exercise regularly, stop smoking, and have regular checkups, you can greatly reduce your medical expenses.

2. Take advantage of free health screenings —if your health insurance doesn't provide adequate health screenings, or if you don't have any health insurance coverage at all, look into free health screenings. Local clinics and hospitals often provide a variety of screenings, such as blood pressure, cholesterol, and mammograms.

3. Compare your health insurance options — you’ll need to get your own coverage if you don’t have employer-sponsored health insurance. Shop around. Because premiums vary widely, you'll probably save money if you get quotes from several companies. Evaluate each plan's coverage and features, taking into account exclusions, limitations, and the freedom to choose health-care providers. Also find out how much you'll end up paying out of pocket in the form of co-payments, coinsurance, and deductibles, because even relatively small amounts of money can really add up if you make frequent visits to your doctor.

4. Reduce the costs of your prescription drugs — if you take prescription drugs regularly, you know they can eat up a large portion of your budget. To save money, order your prescriptions though the mail by using a traditional or online pharmacy. If you belong to a prescription drug plan through your health insurance plan, you may be able to get a three-month supply of your prescription drug through the mail for the same price you would pay for a one-month supply at your neighborhood pharmacy. You can also ask your pharmacist or doctor to recommend a less-expensive generic drug whenever possible.

5. Always check your medical bills for errors — taking a few minutes to go over the charges can save you money in the long run. Check to make sure that the bill accurately reflects the procedures you have undergone and takes into account any applicable insurance coverage you may have. Some errors, such as wrong computer codes, are common, and you may be billed for health care you never received. Contact the appropriate billing office if you think you've found a mistake. If you've received an explanation of benefits from your insurance company that you believe is wrong, ask the company to review your claim.

6. Keep track of your medical expenses — at tax time, you may be able to deduct certain medical expenses if you itemize, and your total medical expenses exceed 7.5 percent of your adjusted gross income. Allowable medical expenses include everything from health-care services to medical aids such as eyeglasses and hearing aids. Keep track of these expenses during the year.

7. Consider joining your spouse's health plan — review both your coverage and your spouse's coverage to see if it makes sense for either of you to join the other's plan. Keep in mind that most plans allow you to add a spouse to your plan within a certain time period after you get married. Otherwise, you may have to wait for the plans' annual open enrollment period.

8. Negotiate a discount with your healthcare provider —you can sometimes negotiate to lower your medical bills. While it may not always work, it doesn't hurt to ask your doctor, hospital, or pharmacy if they're willing to come down in price. Before you begin to negotiate, do a little research to find out what other healthcare providers in your area are charging. You can also ask your healthcare provider if they'll lower their price if you pay in cash up front.

9. Contribute to a flexible spending account — check to see if your employer offers a flexible spending plan that will allow you to put pretax dollars in an account. If so, consider participating. You will be reimbursed for your out-of-pocket medical expenses, such as prescription drugs, dental care, and co-payments. Because flexible spending contributions are taken out of your pay before federal and state taxes are calculated, you get to use pretax dollars to pay your medical bills.

10. Understand your health insurance benefits — your health insurance may cover more than you think. Many insurance companies now provide services that are designed to help you stay safe and healthy. For example, you may receive discounts on vitamins, alternative medicines, health club memberships, or bike helmets. You may also be surprised at the range of coverage your health plan offers. For instance, it may cover dental care for young children, chiropractic care, and acupuncture. Read your plan membership materials to find out what products and services are available through your health plan before you pay for them on your own.

Staying healthy is the best way to reduce your health care costs. Getting a quality health insurance policy and understanding its benefits will also go a long way to keeping your medical bills as low as possible.

Kamis, 21 Januari 2010

Tell The Truth With Life And Critical Illness Insurance

Insurers treat the non-disclosure of information on an application form very seriously indeed, and it is the most common cause for the rejection of a life or critical illness insurance claim. This true story explains that the situation isn’t always black and white, and demonstrates the severity of the penalty. We have changed some details to protect the anonymity of the policyholder.

Ms W had to have an operation to eradicate cancerous lymph nodes from her groin, and immediately fell ill after surgery with an infection she picked up in hospital. Critically ill, she had already made a claim on her critical illness insurance, however she received some unexpected bad news. Her claim was rejected and she was not going to receive the £200,000 she was insured for. How did this happen? Read on so we can explain.

June 2001 – Ms W went to see her doctor about an area of flaky skin on her back, she assumed it was something like eczema. Her GP wanted a specialist to have a look, and made a referral to a dermatologist. Before the appointment arrived, the patch of flaky skin cleared up, so Ms W cancelled the appointment, thinking no more about it. She did not imagine that it was anything serious, and the GP had not given her the impression that there was anything to worry about.

August 2001 – a sales representative from Ms W’s life insurer, Standard Life, called for a routine sales visit. Ms W’s circumstances had changed and she now had a young family depending on her. The sales rep suggested taking out a critical illness insurance policy, and she readily agreed. Ms W took out £200,000 worth of critical illness insurance.

The sales representative talked Ms W through the application form, filling in the answers on her behalf. When they came to the section about any incidences of referral from a GP, Ms W was unsure what the question meant, and asked the sales representative for clarification. According to Ms W, the sales rep told her that she only needed to mention a referral if it related to a serious matter. Ms W didn’t think it was worth mentioning the GP referral for the flaky skin, since she thought it was probably just eczema. She didn’t mention it so it didn’t go on the form. Ms W signed the form after completion and she applied for the Standard Life policy believing that she had provided all the required information.

Ms W soon received notification that she was insured for £200,000 in case she developed a critical illness.

Two years later – Ms W learnt that she had skin cancer, and major surgery quickly followed to try and remove the cancer. Ms W naturally made a claim on her critical illness policy, for which she fully expected to receive a £200,000 payout.

Soon after, Ms W received the rejection letter from Standard Life – the claim was rejected on the grounds of “reckless non-disclosure”. As far as the insurer was concerned, Ms W had withheld information on the application form, and this had invalidated her claim.

As you no doubt have realised, Ms W should have mentioned the GP referral to a dermatologist – and her failure to mention it resulted in a severe penalty. How could she have made such a mistake?

Two major errors were made:

1. When Ms W was asked to give details of any referrals she asked the sales rep what kind of referrals they meant. She was advised that she only needed to mention referrals relating to serious conditions. This advice was incorrect. The question asked for details of “all occasions her GP had referred her for tests or treatments”. ALL OCCASIONS means ALL – whether they were thought to be serious or not. The insurance company needs to know absolutely everything they ask for on the application form, and Ms W unfortunately did not provide that, thanks to the sales rep’s advice.

2. The GP did not give Ms W any indication that the flaky skin could be something serious, a fact that the GP stood by later. Ms W did not realise that the skin condition could be anything other than eczema, and so when told that she only needed to give details of referrals relating to serious conditions, she truly believed that her dermatologist referral was not worth putting on the form. She made this decision based on advice given by the sales rep, and it was a genuine mistake on her part.

Taking the above story into account, we think that Standard Life should realise that Ms W made an honest mistake, and did not deliberately withhold any information. The sales rep did not give the right advice, and Ms W followed that bad advice in good faith. It wasn’t her fault, and Standard Life should relax the penalty in this particular case.

Make sure it doesn’t happen to you

Filling out a life or critical illness insurance application form has to be taken very seriously indeed. You must read every single question and answer each one providing all the necessary information and detail. Withholding information is not an option, don’t be tempted by the thought of cheaper premiums because on making a claim, you will be found out and the claim will be invalid. Don’t take that risk!

Hopefully, Standard Life will see that Ms W did not deliberately mislead them, and they will give her the payout she deserves.

People that do deliberately mislead the insurers do deserve what they will eventually get – nothing.

NB: Standard Life rejects 5%, Friends Provident rejects 15% and Legal & General rejects 16% of all critical illness claims because of policyholders withholding information (whether deliberately or not). The insurance industry realise that they need to do something to address the situation, and are currently developing new ways to get information from applicants, and to publicise the severe penalties for not providing full and accurate information.

Rabu, 20 Januari 2010

Permanent Or Term Insurances?

There are many insurance companies in the world giving their life insurance quote.

It's pretty difficult to pick which one is the best. What should you do? One strategy that'll work is to keep switching insurance companies. Any company will make more money by selling to people who are more price sensitive.

A person needing an insurance may be willing to pay high. A person who keeps switching insurance shows that he is price sensitive and hence, he will get a lower price.

Your life is not the only thing you can insure. You can also insure your house and your car. There are many websites offering free car insurance quotes and home insurance quotes.

There are usually two types of life insurances.

Term Insurance

Term insurance is paying the life insurance while betting that you'll die. You bet $2,000 per year. If you die during that year, you win, say, $1 million dollars. If you don't die, there goes your $2,000.

Life insurance has a major drawback -- You get to die first before you can get your money. So many insurance companies combine life insurance with some form of investment. Is this a good idea? Most of the time, it is not.

Permanent Insurance

Permanent insurance is insurance with savings. Say, you paid $20,000 per year for 10 years. If you die within that10 years, you'll get $1 million. However, at the end of the 10 years, if you fail to die, you still get your $200,000 back, often with interests.

Your insurance agent will usually encourage this. Why? Because they get more commission out of this. Why? Because insurance companies make more money out of this arrangement. Why? Because it's not good for you, at least usually.

First of all, this is not an apple to apple comparison. Say you pay your life insurance to get $1 million dollars. Maybe you got to pay $2,000 per year. With compound insurance, to get a $1 million dollar settlement, you need to pay $20,000 per year, but only for 10 years. Usually, the insurance agent will make things even more confusing for you by offering $100 million dollar compound insurance for $2,000/year.

So how do you make it apple to apple? You compare the permanent insurance with regular term insurance plus regular investment. So, the permanent insurance of $20,000 per year is equivalent with $2,000 term insurance and $18,000 per year investment. If you buy the $2,000 term insurance and invest the $18,000 per year, how much money you'll make after 10 years? A simulation shows that you'll make $286,874.

Now, is permanent insurance a good insurance? Well, just compare that $286,874 with what you'll get back under the term. Usually you'll get less. When you get less, the insurance company makes more. So insurance companies provide greater intensives for the insurance agent to sell permanent insurances.

However, permanent insurance have one advantage. Tax benefit. Your assets can accumulate free of tax. Also, regular investments will often be subject to inheritance tax while insurance may not be.

So a good strategy is to simply buy permanent insurance with $0 coverage. They'll compare the ROI of the permanent insurance apple to apple. Hence, all mutual funds will turn to insurance company providing effectively the same service. It's good, it works, it's productive, and hence governments prohibit that, of course.

You can check out whole life insurance quotes on the web.

Mortgage Insurance Protects Bank Forced Repossess Your House Loss

The coverage usually is supplemental to a Mortgagee's Title Insurance policy, and the premium is customarily paid by the buyer.  As with most other types of insurance, you pay a monthly premium on top of your monthly mortgage payment for this policy.  A mortgage insurance policy protects the bank in the event they are forced to repossess your house and sell it at a loss.  Private mortgage insurance is an insurance policy designed to protect the lender in case you do not pay back your mortgage loan.  A one-year paid receipt for homeowner's insurance policy for at least the amount of the mortgage is required at the loan closing.

  As soon as the sum insured is paid out the mortgage life insurance policy ceases.  A mortgage insurance premium is a policy that insures the lender against loss if the homeowner defaults on a mortgage.  top Insurance Fees Your policy of homeowner's or hazard insurance will need to be current at the time the new mortgage closes.  Compare the cost of a term life insurance policy to a mortgage insurance policy.  It is often less expensive to purchase a term life insurance policy to function as a mortgage protection life insurance policy.  The idea behind mortgage protection insurance is straightforward: You pay a premium, which remains the same for the duration of the policy.    You have a separate policy for the mortgage and other policies for other life insurance needs.  An individual mortgage insurance policy, obtained directly from an insurer, puts you in control of your own coverage. 

  If a borrower stops paying on a mortgage, the insurance company ensures that the lender will be paid in full.  Disposable Income A term referring to all income remaining after all necessary expenses are paid, such as mortgage, car payment, insurance, etc.  Private mortgage insurance can help out enormously, especially after you have already paid your closing costs and your down payment.  The refunds will involve premiums that were paid for unnecessary mortgage insurance over the last three years, although aides to Mr.  It also does not allow you the option of retaining the insurance coverage past the point in time that the mortgage is paid off.

  Most mortgage insurance premiums are paid monthly as add-ons to the principal, interest, insurance and tax escrows.  Your insurance terminates when your mortgage is paid off or transferred to another party.  Private mortgage insurance can be paid on either an annual, monthly or single premium plan.  Homeowner's InsuranceExperts say that even if a mortgage is paid off, homeowner's insurance is still a good buy.  Lenders are paid in advance for how is difficult to 80 of borrowers, who put down on mortgage insurance preamble.  Once your loan balance is paid down to less than 75% or 80% of property value, you can cancel your mortgage insurance.  The mortgage loan insurance premium may be paid in cash or added to your mortgage. 

  With mortgage insurance, the borrower pays the premiums, but the lender is the beneficiary.  A mortgage insurance apart from providing security against losses to the lender also helps in reducing the down payment. Mortgage insurance coverage on low-down-payment loans protects a lender against losses due to homeowner default, says the company in a news release.  With PMI, the borrower pays a premium to a mortgage insurance company selected by the lender.  When you have private mortgage insurance you are essentially protecting the lender from any bad deeds on your part.  Don't throw away your money, ask your lender for the details about private mortgage insurance and your mortgage.

 You can ask the lender to cancel your private mortgage insurance once you get to the 20-22 percent equity mark.  Much of the available jobloss mortgage insurance is available at no cost from the lender as part of a loan package or program.  All dealings concerning mortgage insurance are usually handled by the lender.  Private mortgage insurance helps to protect the lender if the borrower cannot repay the loan.  Private mortgage insurance (PMI) is a form of insurance that protects the lender against loss in the event the borrower defaults on the mortgage.  In effect, the mortgage insurance company shares the risk of foreclosure with the lender.  Private mortgage insurance is insurance that protects a lender in the event that a homeowner defaults on a loan.  http://www.insurance-health-quote.com/mortgage-insurance/

Selasa, 19 Januari 2010

Long Term Care Insurance Should I Get This?

Yes, you may want to consider a long term care insurance plan if you don’’t want to drain your retirement savings and other investments in the future! It is currently estimated that nursing home costs are more than $10,000 per month. Imagine, how much this will cost you on an annual basis if you had to pay this money out of your pocket if you needed care from a nursing home! This would be financially devastating without long term care insurance.

Did you know that prior to the passage of the Deficit Reduction Act of 2005, most Americans were able to count on Medicaid to assist them with long term health care. The Deficit Reduction Act changes all of that. This new law places the majority of long term health care costs on you, especially if you have assets. Unfortunately, middle class Americans will be hit the hardest with this new law.

How does the Deficit Reduction Act affect me if I need nursing home care and have assets? Well, for the most part, you will need to exhaust your assets before you will be eligible for Medicaid. Under this new law, there is a five year look back period from the date that you apply for your Medicaid benefits. This five year look back period, is to ensure that you have not transferred assets to relatives, friends, or other individuals. If you have transferred your assets to someone, Medicaid will count this against you and you will have a period of penalty wherein you will not qualify for benefits. Basically, this means that you could be out of money and Medicaid will not pay for your nursing home care!

The other side of this new law is that even if you have not transferred your assets to someone, you cannot have more than $500,00 in home equity. The majority of your assets including trusts and annuities are viewed differently under this new law.

It is important, that you consider long term care insurance as part of your retirement planning. With passage of the Deficit Reduction Act of 2005, it is a must! Unless you are independently wealthy and don’’t mind coming out of your pocket with more than $10,000 per month for your prospective nursing home care! For the average person, this would be a severe financial hardship.

What age should I consider getting a long term care insurance plan? You may want to consider in your early to mid fifties. However, it is recommended that you consult your insurance agent or financial advisor about this.

Planning is important, in order to assist you in eliminating a potentially devastating financial disaster. You want to live out the golden years of your retirement as stress free as possible. So make sure you plan for your future long term health care needs!

Life Insurance - Plan For Life

The very best time to arrange life insurance is when it’s furthest from your thoughts. Take a typical young man. He’s at the start of his career, possibly still living at home, but thinking of looking around for a flat. He has a car and the insurance that he arranged for it was probably his first step in the insurance ladder.

If he decided to take out some life insurance, whilst he’s still young, fit and healthy he’d get the best possible rates. Probably the most valuable insurance at this stage is Critical Illness (CI) cover.

Whilst life insurance is designed to pay out to your beneficiaries if you die, CI cover will give you valuable support if you become critically ill. For our young man, starting on his career, an illness of this type could be a financial disaster. It is a fact that one in three people will develop cancer at some time in their lives, but the good news is that treatment and cure rates are improving all the time.

Advances in medical science thankfully mean that more and more people will survive many of the major serious illnesses. Unfortunately this recovery can take many months, or even years and necessitate long period of time off work. It may not be possible to carry on with the same work, meaning a change of career. In some cases it may be necessary to change your home and car.

Without CI cover, he’d probably find that his company would pay his salary for around three months and after that he’d have to rely on incapacity benefit. For those on contract work and the self-employed the situation is even worse. CI insurance will pay out a lump sum to cover your expenses and leave you to concentrate on your treatment and recovery.

There’s a very wide range of CI policies available. All will cover what are know as “Core Conditions”, which are Cancer, Stroke, Heart Attack, Coronary by-pass surgery, Kidney failure, Major organ transplant and Multiple sclerosis. Some will cover up to 30 additional conditions.

At the time of purchase of the policy, the medical conditions for which you would be covered should be fully listed. Go through this carefully and make sure that you understand any exclusions within the cover.

It is essential to fill in the application form very carefully. If you fail to disclose a previous illness or condition, then you may find that the insurers will refuse to pay out. Our typical young man should be fine here, as long as he makes sure that he discloses all illnesses, no matter how minor they seemed at the time. The older you get, the more conditions and illnesses there are to remember and the greater chance you’ll forget something which you thought was trivial.

Having got CI cover sorted, this would be an excellent time for our young man to arrange some simple life insurance. Simple life insurance is reasonably priced and offers important cover. A term insurance policy will run for a set number of years. If the policyholder should die during this period, a lump sum would be paid to his dependants. Even if there are no dependants when the young man first takes this cover out, there may be loans and other debts and maybe some fairly “light” cover, for a limited term would be a good step to take. It can be topped up as circumstances change. Certainly his insurance will never be cheaper – when it comes to insurance, it’s a case of the younger the better.

Our smart young man doesn’t even have to waste his valuable time chasing up insurance. A quick visit to an on-line broker will give him all the advice he needs and the very best of quotes, with on-line discounts too.

Senin, 18 Januari 2010

Is Term Insurance Right For You!

For some reason I always seem to receive a lot of mail this time of year on the subject of “Life Insurance”.  Most want to know the benefits or pitfalls of Term Life Insurance over Permanent Life Insurance.

Term Life Insurance is by far the most cost effective way of securing a life insurance policy available to the general public. Term Life Insurance covers a specific period of time - normally the policy will run for periods of 5, 10, and 20 years. As the age of the insured increases, the cost of the premium will increase. Premiums are calculated on the mortality rate, which is usually dependent on the persons age, sex and whether that person uses tobacco.

This type of policy allows the insured or the owner to pay a set premium for an agreed period. The Insurance company provides monetary benefits to the beneficiary in case of death of the insured during that period. Usually, the benefits received on the death of the insured is income tax free.

There are four parties in term life insurance: (1) the owner is the one who pays the premium; (2) the insured is the one on whose death, a death benefit (face value) will go to the beneficiary; (3) the beneficiary is one who will receive the proceeds of insurance on death of the insured; and (4) the insurer is the company providing the insurance. Depending on the Insurance company you choose, the premiums can be paid monthly, quarterly or annually.  For example, Fred pays $50 dollars monthly to XYZ Company for insuring the life of Margaret (his wife) for a period of 10 years. Should Margaret die during the 10 years of the agreement, XYZ company will pay $25,000 to Joe (son of Fred and Margaret). Here the insured is Margaret, the owner of the policy is Fred, the beneficiary is Joe and the insurer is XYZ Company. If Margaret does not die during the 10 years, XYZ Company will not be liable to pay any money to any of the parties involved. Often the owner and the insured are same. That is, a person buys a policy to cover his own death and nominates a beneficiary.  Husbands and wives often insure each other in case of death.

What is Term Life Insurance? It is a legal contract with terms and conditions and assumed risks. Sometimes there can be special provisions in the agreement like suicide terms, wherein on suicide of the insured, there is no benefit accrued to the beneficiary. Term Life Insurance is based on two concepts: (1) theory of diminishing responsibility and (2) Buy Term and Invest the Difference (BTID). With Term Life Insurance, the responsibility or liability of the insuring company reduces as the policy reaches its maturity. What makes Term Life Insurance the most cost effective type of insurance available to the public is that there is no cash value at the end of the period. Studies have shown that the mortality rate in Term Life Insurance can be as low as 1%. Hence the concept of BTID.

Rather than going for permanent life insurance (where on the expiry of the agreed period, the owner will accrue some cash benefit and there is a savings component in it) it is considered cheaper to buy term life insurance and take care of the savings components by investing in other areas.

With the present market giving good returns on investments, buying a term life insurance is a more attractive option than permanent life insurance.

Have an opinion or a question you would like me to answer, then write me! http://www.CarlHampton.com

Minggu, 17 Januari 2010

Insurance Against Rising Mortgage Payments

There's good news for those shocked by rising payments on interest-only and adjustable-rate mortgages. It's possible an insurance product may help eliminate some of the stress.

Interest-only loans and adjustable-rate mortgages, made popular when interest rates dipped below 5 percent, made low monthly payments possible even when borrowers put little or no money down.

However, many homeowners are now seeing payment increases as low introductory rates increase and interest-only periods end.

Experts believe the increases are contributing to rising foreclosures-up 45 percent in January, according to foreclosure listing service RealtyTrac.

"One trillion dollars worth of mortgages will reset to new interest rates next year-we could be facing a major crisis," said Bill Ruh, Government Affairs Director of the California-based Citrus Valley Association of Realtors. "Buyers may think they can only purchase a home using a short-term or fancy combo loan, but the reliable 30-year-fixed mortgage is an attainable and secure option."

While many have tried to avoid it in the past, new types of private mortgage insurance (MI) offer that secure option, providing a lower monthly payment than many combo loans.

One type of mortgage insurance, called "single premium", lets buyers borrow the full amount needed, with no added monthly fees because the one-time premium is financed within one loan. And if the value of the home appreciates enough to cancel the insurance within the first five years, buyers receive a partial refund. In today's real estate environment, mortgage insurance sometimes cancels in as little as two to three years.

Compare the savings on a "single premium" loan to a "piggyback" mortgage on a $175,000 home purchased with a 5 percent down payment.

The single premium loan has a $1,076 monthly payment, while the piggyback is $1,142 per month. If the mortgage insurance were canceled after three years, the single premium loan holder would receive a one-time refund of $1,630.

Said Kevin Schneider of Genworth Financial, Inc., "With single premium products, monthly payments are among the lowest, and homeowners have peace of mind knowing that payments will not fluctuate."

Sabtu, 16 Januari 2010

Insurance Made Easy: A Guide For The Consumer

For most of us, insurance coverage represents a love-hate relationship. We hate paying for the premiums, but love having the right kind of coverage when it is needed. We realize that is important to have insurance coverage, but just the thought of contacting different insurance agents, or researching different insurance plans, can not only be a scary experience, but incredibly overwhelming. Knowing what types of insurance are available, and making sure you have the correct coverage for your life’s needs is a task that should be given careful consideration.

Using the following suggestions, whether you are a novice or a veteran insurance buyer, will help you to make critical insurance coverage decisions. First and most important, is to ask yourself the question; what kind of insurance do I need? There is auto insurance to protect yourself and others when driving. Health coverage is a vital issue to address, as well as life insurance, disability and long-term health care. If you have a home, you need to protect your most valuable possession with home-owners insurance. There are many types of insurance for each of the categories mentioned. Asking the right questions can make all of the difference in deciding on the policy that fits you best.

Auto Insurance

Auto insurance is required in most states. You may not be required to carry full coverage, which includes collision, comprehensive and medical coverage; but you are required to carry liability coverage. Liability is the foundation of any auto insurance policy. If you are at fault in an accident, your liability insurance will pay for the bodily injury and property damage expenses caused to others in the accident, including your legal bills. However, if your vehicle is damaged, the expense to repair it will not be covered without having a full coverage policy. Collision, comprehensive and medical coverage are for your benefit. Collision will pay for the repair to your vehicle, while comprehensive coverage will pay for damages to your car that weren’t caused by an auto accident. Medical payments coverage will pay for you and your passenger’s medical expenses after an accident. This coverage will pay no matter who is at fault.

Collision coverage is usually the most expensive part of a policy, you can choose a higher deductible, say $500 or $1000, and keep your premium costs down. If you have a newer vehicle and have a lien against it, the lending institution will require that you have full coverage. By working with a professional insurance agent, the agent would be able to give you many cost saving suggestions that you could take advantage of to lower your rates, and still give you the coverage you need.

Health Insurance

Health insurance is one of the largest expenses that we face today. Educating yourself about the different types of health insurance available will assist you with your insurance buying decision. There are many types of plans, but essentially two kinds of health insurance: Fee-for Service and Managed Care.

Fee-for-Service assumes that the medical professional will be paid a fee for services provided. Managed Care encompasses various plans and can include: health maintenance organizations (HMOs), preferred provider organizations (PPO), or point-of-service (POS). These plans provide comprehensive health services to their members and offer financial incentives to their members to use providers in their network. Health insurance is one of the least understood types of insurance; many people feel they do not need health coverage, but just one major illness or accident can force you into bankruptcy when you can’t pay your bills. This is why you need to understand all the different types of plans available and what plan would best suit your needs and budget. Meeting with an insurance professional and asking the right questions, can save you many sleepless nights of worry and provide you with some peace of mind.

Life Insurance

There are some basic things to consider when you are assessing your life insurance needs. You should first consider your financial situation and the standard of living you would want your dependents or survivors to maintain. Would you want a policy that would cover funeral expenses and final medical bills, or do you have a family to consider where your coverage would also pay outstanding debts, child-rearing expenses, and educational costs? There are two main types of life insurance available. They are Term Life and Permanent or Whole Life.

Term provides death benefit protection for a specified period of time. You can buy a policy in increments of 10, 20 or 30 years. These are usually less expensive, but your rates can increase each time you renew your policy. With Permanent, the costs of the policy are stretched out over a longer period of time, usually spread out over your entire life. Permanent can also be used as a savings vehicle. Once the premium has been paid, the company invests the additional funds. It’s a very important choice as to what insurance company you choose. A knowledgeable and experienced agent can answer all of these and your personal questions about life insurance.

Disability Insurance

Is disability insurance really necessary? Many of us can easily become sick or disabled tomorrow and not be able to work for two or three months. Would you have enough savings to cover your living expenses? There are two types of disability insurance. Short term and long term disability.

Short term will pay you a percentage of your salary for a short period of time. These policies are usually not very expensive, and usually cover a period of three to six months. Long term disability insurance picks up where your short term leaves off. Long term will pay a percentage of your salary until you are 65 years old. Disability insurance can be costly when you by it on your own, but it should be a part of everyone’s financial plan. It could easily be argued that you need disability coverage more than life insurance.

Long-term care Insurance

Another form of insurance that people around 50 years of age should consider is long term care insurance. There are many confusing forms of this insurance, but it essentially covers costs you would incur when you can no longer perform activities of daily living, such as dressing yourself, bathing yourself, or the need of skilled nursing care at home or in a care facility. Medicare and Medicare supplemental insurances don’t cover most long term care expenses. This is a very important insurance, you would need the help of an insurance professional, one who specializes in long term care insurance, to make sure you have the best coverage to fit your long term care needs.

Homeowner’s Insurance

If you are a homeowner and you have a mortgage on your home, your lender requires you to have homeowner’s insurance. There is much more to consider than how much your coverage will cost, you need an adequate policy that will give you the right level of protection; plus special provisions for your valuables and other possessions. You may need additional coverage for things such as earthquakes or floods. Before you get a policy, you will need to take an inventory of what you have in your home. Know what your insurance limits are, learn the difference between replacement-cost and actual-cash-value coverage. Again, consulting with an insurance professional and one who will listen and understands your specific needs is essential.

With all of the different types of insurances available, it is best to be prepared when selecting a policy. Choosing the wrong insurance policy can have disastrous consequences for both you and your family. There are many decisions that need to be made when looking for insurance, such as deciding what type of insurance you would need, and also considering what you can afford. You want to be able to speak to an insurance agent who will not pressure you or try to sell you insurance coverage you do not need. A professional can suggest and compare different plans and advise you which plan would best fit your own unique needs. All the while, offering this service at no cost to you.

Jumat, 15 Januari 2010

I Don't Want To Pay For Auto Insurance! What's It For Anyway?

There are approximately 20 various types of insurance policies available and auto, home, life and health top the charts.

The concept of insurance has been recorded to be first practiced as far back as 2nd and 3rd millennium B.C. Just about anything you think about or hold value too these days can be insured. Auto or vehicle insurance is one of the most common types of insurance and is a basic policy to protect you against losses incurred from car accidents, theft, vandalism and various other mishaps. Auto insurance can be purchased for different vehicles like cars and trucks as well as recreational items like motorbikes, boats and motor homes. In recent years the internet has been instrumental in helping people to know the various policies available to meet their needs and compare prices.

What's auto insurance for anyway?

Auto insurance is basically a contract between you the customer or car owner and an insurance company. According to this contract you the customer agree to pay a certain amount of money or premium to the insurance company and the company agrees to payout any losses as defined in the policy.

The main items covered in auto insurance policies are:

1. Property: in case of damage or theft of a car the reimbursement is paid under the property coverage.

2. Liability: covers expenses incurred for bodily injury or property damage to the other person and or yourself.

3. Medical expense: medical coverage helps pay for treating injuries, rehabilitation and funeral expenses.

Most insurance policies are valid for six months to one year and need to be renewed before the policy expires to avoid gaps of coverage where you would be liable if something were to happen. Insurance companies will usually notify you by mail when it is time to renew your policy. Insurance companies charge a flat rate premium regardless of how much the vehicle is used. Some insurance companies also offer various types of discounts.

The Benefits of Auto Insurance:

In order to protect your assets and financial situation it is very important to purchase auto insurance, this is the main purpose of auto insurance. Auto insurance is not only important for the protection of your vehicle but also in most countries it is required mandatory by law.

It is very important to conduct a detailed study when buying auto insurance coverage because there are different types of policies with different benefits. Consult an expert before investing in any insurance to ensure you get the right type and best rates possible.

Kamis, 14 Januari 2010

How Life Insurance Can Cover Your Mortgage Balance

Discussing the need for life insurance is never a pleasant topic, and certainly combined with talk of mortgage payments, it can be downright distasteful.  But it is your responsibility as the principle breadwinner in your home to consider what might happen if you or your spouse were to perish.  Would your spouse be able to meet the most basic needs of food and shelter?  While the money necessary to pay for basic amenities like food and transportation are attainable through a single income source, most families simply cannot afford to meet their most basic requirement, the mortgage payment, without the income from both spouses.

How it Works
If you are in this situation, it is important to take the necessary precautions in case you or your spouse dies unexpectedly.  While saving enough to cover your mortgage is certainly an ideal solution, it is largely unfeasible for most contemporary families.  As a result, individuals often opt for mortgage protection life insurance policies.  These policies are designed specifically to meet the needs of your home mortgage payment in the event that you or your spouse dies. 

The idea behind mortgage protection life insurance is simple: you pay a monthly premium in exchange for which the insurance company agrees to pay off the rest of your mortgage should you die. 

Pricing for mortgage protection life insurance policies parallels that of traditional life insurance price criteria.  For example, if you smoke your rates will be higher, just as if you are an older individual.  But certainly the most determinative factor in your price will be the amount of coverage you need.  The more you owe on your home, the more insurance you will need to pay it off, which of course means the more expensive the insurance premium will be.

Alternatives to Consider
While mortgage protection life insurance will cover your mortgage payment, as all home owners know, this is only part of the cost of owning a home.  In addition there are taxes and repairs to prepare for.  For a family that has lost a breadwinner, making these types of allocations can be difficult.  As a result, many individuals opt for coverage which goes beyond just mortgage protection and instead provides payments sufficient to cover all the expenses associated with owning a home.  This type of insurance often comes in the form of a term life policy which is for an amount which exceeds the price of your home.  Of course, this extra coverage comes with a price.  But with this coverage also comes quite a bit more flexibility.  Under a term life policy your family is not bound to pay off the house with the money they receive, but can instead use it in whatever manner they feel most compelled to.  This can be especially helpful if there are other medical costs to consider or if you have children approaching college age. 

Life insurance is not a pleasant concept to consider because it requires that we think about the potential for our own demise and the resulting consequences of our death.  It is vital, however, that as individuals who are responsible for the financial support of others, we consider these difficult questions and decide whether a life insurance policy is the best solution for us.

Rabu, 13 Januari 2010

Home Insurance and Hurricane Preparations

The violent winds, rains and storm damage from hurricanes can devastate communities and cause billions of dollars worth of destruction. The losses from hurricanes this year alone have surpassed that from almost any other natural disaster in years. The risk to your home and possessions can be enormous and you really should be considering insurance cover for hurricane damage if you live in any area that is exposed to the risk of hurricane. As well as insurance cover however, there are other steps you can be taking to prepare for, and minimise the damage to your property and risk to your family that hurricanes pose.

Since the Atlantic hurricane season in June and continues through till the end of November, there is a significant of the year during which you should be in some way for hurricane threats. Some of the preparations below will be required by insurance policies, others will not but are still helpful to you and your family. Some of them may even be able to bring down your insurance policy price as the insurance company recognises that you are safer than you otherwise would be and are therefore less likely to be making a claim.

<b>Be Prepared</b>

First of all you should be familiar with the terms of your insurance policy and any disaster preparedness and response plans they have. These will help you in the case that disaster does strike or you find yourself in need of making a claim.

If you think you may need to evacuate your area, you should contact the appropriate authorities before hand to know what those requirements will be. You should have a plan formulated in advance and if there are shelters nearby you should know where they are and how to get to them.

Keep supplies such as food, water, gasoline, portable radios and batteries stored somewhere safe so they will be available to you in the emergency. Several flashlights with extra batteries should be included. Copies of important identification and insurance documentation would also be useful in certain situations to speed up applications in the event that wide spread devastation occurs. Medical supplies such as aspirin and aspirin free painkillers, antacid, bandages, gauze and disinfectant are also useful.

While <b>insurance is a very important step</b> you should be taking to protect your possessions and family in the event of disaster, there are many other steps you can take to prepare for the situation also.

Selasa, 12 Januari 2010

Health Insurance

Health insurance is designed to offer financial protection against losses experienced due to illness, accidents, or injury. This type of insurance comes in many forms that offer differing levels of coverage. It can be purchased as part of a group policy or may be purchased by an individual.

Group policies are generally purchased through an employer, associations, or unions. They may be less expensive because the costs associated with administration are reduced. In addition, the employees or association may pay part of the premium.

Group health insurance has become an incentive for potential employees who are trying to cover their or their families' health care expenses. Some policies offer managed care. Depending on the policies of a managed care provider, preventative health care may be part of the plan. Preventative measures may include regular checkups.

Individuals may purchase individual health insurance polices in the absence of company provided benefits or if they are self-employed. Generally individual health plans can be more expensive, however, they also have some benefits.

For example, individual policies can be customized for your specific needs. Shopping around for health insurance can be helpful by allowing you to compare the benefits and cost of different types of coverage. Consulting with caring agents will help you determine the policy that is best for you and what level of coverage you'll need.

You may be able to save money on the premium of your policy if you carry a higher deductible. The deductible is the amount of out of pocket expenses you pay before your coverage begins.

Health insurance can cover a variety of expenses. For example, it may pay for the cost of hospitalization or surgery. It may also pay other hospital expenses such as the cost of the hospital room.

All health insurance policies are not equal in this regard. Some policies will pay a flat rate daily for the cost of a room. Other types may pay everything after the deductible for the room.

Health insurance may also cover expenses due to a disability, and may cover rehabilitation such as physical therapy, or aftercare. Disability insurance, a type of health insurance, may pay expenses for loss of income in addition to health care expenses.

Some policies also provide benefits for medication or necessary medical devices such as a pacemaker. Also, some contemporary health insurance policies provide some dental coverage. However, it's important to note that levels of coverage will vary between policies, sometimes significantly.

Health insurance may also cover you for existing conditions; however there may be up to a year delay before coverage begins for policies of people with pre-existing conditions.

Health insurance may seem like an undue expense when you are young and healthy, but it's invaluable when you need it most. Consult with a health insurance agent to make sure you have a good understanding of the benefits of your plan. They can help you answer any questions you may have about the conditions and benefits of your policy.

It can also be helpful to compare a number of health insurance companies, so you can get the best policy for your individual needs at the lowest rate.

Becoming educated about your policy from enrollment on can help reduce stress levels during a medical emergency. In this way you can also be more proactive with your own care. And you can have peace of mind knowing that if an unexpected situation happens, you will be covered.

For more information, see Make-Getting-Insurance-Easy.com/health-insurance

Senin, 11 Januari 2010

Florida Homeowners Insurance Coverage

2005 marked a record year for hurricanes in the Atlantic Ocean and Gulf of Mexico, with weather reporters resorting to using the Greek Alphabet to come up with names for hurricanes and tropical storms headed towards the United States. Unfortunately a few of these hurricanes, including Dennis, Katrina and Wilma causes major destruction on both the Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico sides of Florida.

Because Florida is right in the midst of hurricane alley for nearly half the year, finding affordable Homeowners insurance coverage is nearly impossible for most homeowners and sustaining and repaying those Homeowners insurance policies is just as impossible for the actual insurance companies.

For quite some time, in the 1980s and 1990s, many Florida residences were covered by the state run insurance company, called the Residential Joint Underwriting Association. Only recently have large private Homeowners insurance companies, like Allstate, begun taking on homeowners insurance policies in sections of Florida, along the coastlines and in the southern part of the state, where hurricanes are more likely to occur.

Whether going through the state run RJU association or going through a private home insurance agency, there is no question that Homeowners insurance will be extremely expensive anywhere near the coast in Florida. The same home in Ohio may cost three times less to insure than it would on the coast of Florida, simply because of all the added coverage for hurricane season.

Since most basic insurance policies only cover certain natural disasters that could occur anywhere in the country, most often hurricane damage is not included in this policy. For that reason, Florida homeowners have to go about purchasing extra hurricane insurance to make sure their home will be covered in case hit by one of these ocean storms.

A law was recently passed in 2005 in Florida that requires plain language on insurance policies so that homeowners can easily understand the terms of their policy without being confused by the heavy jargon. Before this, many Florida homeowners were left to fend for themselves or to apply for Federal or Florida aid because many did not realize that even hurricane insurance often does not include flood damage.

Of course this can be tricky to distinguish and this is where many homeowners found themselves at a loss. Even if the flooding is caused by a storm surge of rising water from the hurricane, this is not covered by the hurricane because it is not considered damage due to the high winds or rain of the storm, but is instead caused by the ocean waters rising.

If Florida homeowners are in an area that could be considered a storm surge area, usually even up to 25 feet from the ocean, then they need to consider also including flood insurance as a separate clause to their Homeowners insurance. Be sure to discuss with your insurance agent exactly what types of water damage are covered in the hurricane insurance policy and the flood policy to make sure you are covered from all angles when encountering a hurricane.

Currently legislation is in the works that will limit the amount of surcharges that Florida homeowners can be charged to help prevent price gouging because of the area that Floridians live in. If legislation is passed, this will help level out private and public insurance rates for Floridians, making it easier to acquire insurance from year to year even though they live in an extremely high risk area.

If you are a new resident of Florida and have moved to the state between the months of June and November, hurricane season, you may not be able to acquire hurricane insurance for the first season, as many insurance companies put a block on new hurricane insurance policies until after hurricane season is over.

This is to prevent those who may just acquire the insurance temporarily and then get rid of it after hurricane season is over. Before closing on the home, consider adding the current Homeowners policy into the contract on the home to ensure that you will be covered for the first season. If this is not possible, you may be able to find insurance to cover a hurricane but it could cost a pretty penny.

Factors Affecting you Motorcycle Insurance Premium

Though it isn’t officially required in several states, many motorists prefer to get a motorcycle insurance. It is a good and extremely significant coverage in case the inevitable happens. After all, simply being careful while driving your motorcycle and wearing safety gears isn’t the only insurance you need.

Most of us are aware that motorcycles have higher rate of accidents per unit distance compared to cars. This is because of the exposed driver and the reality that most vehicle drivers are unable to see these smaller driving machines in the traffic line.

If you are transferring to a new state or you have just purchased a motorcycle, you should check first the insurance law of your state before whooshing down the road with your bike. This way, you can be sure that you are driving or riding legally. In case your state requires you to have liability coverage, then there are lots of motorcycle insurance options available for you.

To find the best deals on motorcycle insurance, it is always advisable to inquire first before setting your hands in a particular policy.  There are key factors that affect your motorcycle insurance premium. Among them are:

1.)Engine displacement size (in cubic centimeter) of your motorcycle.  Most of the times, you’ll have higher motorcycle insurance premium if your bike employ a larger displacement engine. This type of motorcycles is generally more expensive and they boast superior performance.

2.)Make or brand of the Motorcycle. It isn’t such a big factor, but it is usually considered in calculating the motorcycle insurance premium. A motorcycle brand with few models usually cost higher than a usual brand.

3.)The age of the driver or the owner. Older drivers normally benefit from cheaper motorcycle insurance rates than younger drivers using the same type of motorcycle.

4.)Type of bike. The type of bike you own and you are planning to insure also affect the rate of your motorcycle insurance. Sport bikes are normally expensive and thus require higher premium.

5.)Is your motorcycle garaged? If your bike will be parked in a garage if you’re not using it, your premium won’t be as high as those who are leaving their motorcycle parked out along the pavement. In the latter case, the motorcycle will be prone to accidents and theft and consequently, it will require higher insurance rate.

6.)Driving Record.  Your driving record as well as your experience affects your motorcycle insurance payment. If your driving record has been messed up by too many tickets and accidents, then you should expect to pay for higher rates.

7.)Number of miles driven every week. It is an important consideration in calculating your motorcycle insurance payment, since the mileage you are likely to put on your motorcycle will push your premium up or pull it down. So you have to decide first if your bike will serve as your service in your daily commute or it is intended only for leisure. If you will use your motorcycle in your everyday activities, then expect to pay higher premium.

8.)Locality. This factor also matter in the computation of the cost of your motorcycle insurance. If you are residing in a big city, expect slightly higher rates compared to those who are living in a rural area but are insuring the same type of bike.

To get a full motorcycle insurance coverage, make sure that your insurance covers liability coverage, no-fault coverage, passenger coverage, collision coverage, uninsured coverage, collision coverage and service coverage.

Minggu, 10 Januari 2010

Discount Life Insurance

Life insurance is a type of insurance policy that provides financial security and peace of mind for you, your family and dependants. It is based on the simple principle that should you die during the term of the life insurance policy, the person(s) named in the insurance policy will receive a lump sum or series of payments for the insured amount. If you have a mortgage and/or are the main income producer in the family, a life insurance policy will ensure your family's future is secure as the payment can be configured to pay off all outstanding debts and provide a substantial income for the ones that you leave behind.

Buying life insurance

When buying life insurance it is advisable to shop around for the best discount. Life insurance premiums can vary significantly between life insurance providers, while some providers will even offer discount life insurance, guaranteeing their premiums to be the lowest available on a like-for-like basis. If you want the best discount on your life insurance policy you'll need to look out for special discount offers run by the insurance providers. This may take some time however, and you're not guaranteed that the next discount offer that becomes available will be the right type of life insurance policy for your circumstances.

Alternatively, you should instead conduct your search for discount life insurance online.

Online = discount life insurance

Why is it important to look online for discount life insurance you may ask? Well, the reasons are numerous! It's quick, it's easy and there is a huge amount of choice available on life insurance policies at the click of your mouse. Best of all though, life insurance policies found online are generally cheaper than those found offline. This is because there are fewer overheads involved in processing an online application form for life insurance than there is when a life insurance company processes a paper-based application. The costs incurred by the life insurance company when they advertise on the Internet are also lower than say if they were to advertise on the TV, radio or via newspapers.

Additionally, portals and web sites that provide a comparison between different life insurance policies, some of which will be discount polices, are certainly worth a visit, especially if they provide access to online application forms. Why are they worth a visit? Well, not only will these portals offer you a selection of the lowest priced discount policies available, but you may also be able to pick up a further discount when buying the life insurance policy through the portal.

Sabtu, 09 Januari 2010

Discount Car Insurance - Saving Money On Car Insurance Is Easy

Car insurance is one part of our family budget that we will always have to deal with and so it behooves us to get better informed. We would all love to buy some form of discount car insurance. The reality of that already exists. There are more discounts in car insurance than ever before. Some of the newer vehicles have so many of them that they are often cheaper to insure than some of the older vehicles. Let’s review some of the discounts available when purchasing car insurance.

Multiple Policy Discount – This one is common and yet there are many people that do not take advantage of this discount. This discount can be as high as 15% with some companies.

Good Driver Discounts – Insurance companies love to reward the driver that has an excellent driving record. These are profitable policyholders and help bring the over all rates down.

Auto Safety Features Discount – Automobiles with airbags and seatbelts receive lower rates. Anti-lock brakes and anti-theft devices also lower car insurance rates. The vehicle identification number will identify all of these features and so it is important to give that number to whoever is quoting your car insurance.

Young Driver Discounts – Many companies give substantial discounts for high school and college students that have a 3.0 grade point average or better. The drivers training discount has been a standard discount for young drivers. Find a company that has both and you will help lower premium dramatically.

Senior Citizens Discounts – Drivers 55 and older are given retirement discounts if no longer employed. Homemakers can qualify automatically at age 55 with some companies. Mature driver discounts are also available when a driving course is completed.

Lower Tort Option – There are some states that have a lower or limited tort option. This is your ability to sue for pain and suffering. The lower tort option limits your ability to sue but at the same time it can save you 20% or more in your premium. Contact your agent or insurance company about the tort laws in your state.