Thursday, June 23, 2016

Millennials Prefer to Rent but Pass on Renters Insurance

Renters Insurance, insurance, finance, money, personal finance

According to a survey published on insuranceQuotes, Millennials prefer to rent homes, and most of them don't like to get renters insurance. Even though that coverage is not expensive, and having non could cause a huge financial hardship.

Based on the April 2016 survey for done by Princeton Survey Research Associates International, 66% of 18 to 29 years old are renting their home, compared with just 37% of consumers overall. What is alarming is that less than 33% of Millennial renters have renters insurance.

When questioned about not having renters policy, 59% of renters in the 18 to 29 age group said that cost is not the primary reason. Instead, they believe it’s unnecessary because they live in a very secure property (61%), or they don’t own enough personal property to insure (43%). And 41% of them said they’re avoiding renters insurance because they don’t understand how the product works.

A lot of the consumers are foregoing the benefits of renters insurance because they underestimate the benefits and overestimate its cost. The average annual premium is $188 (or $15.67 per month); however, 25% of 18- to 29-year-old respondents believe they’d have to pay $1,000 or more. People need to be educated since it is an affordable financial safety net that every renter should have.

Other report highlights include:

    Renters who don’t have renters insurance because they don’t understand the product increased from 27% in 2015 to 33% this year.
    Renters who don’t have insurance because they don’t know where to get it also increased from 20% in 2015 to 26% this year.
    College graduates are more likely to have renters insurance compared to high school graduates or those with a lesser education – 64% to 24% respectively.
    35% of respondents mistakenly said a renters policy does not cover personal property damaged in a natural disaster or property stolen from you outside of your rental home (60%).

The full report is available here:

The survey was done by Princeton Survey Research Associates International (PSRAI) through telephone interviews with a nationally representative sample of 1,000 adults living in the continental United States.

Here is why Renters Insurance is important for me personally:

1. If my stuff is stolen like my iPhone, iPad or laptop, furniture or bicycles could cost thousands of dollars. Renters insurance covers more than just theft it also covers fire, water problems and vandalism.

2. If you burned your dinner and it resulted to smoke damage. Your landlord will bill you for that damage even if none of your property was damaged since his property has been.

3. Renters insurance is about $12 to $30 a month for $30,000 worth of coverage a small cost with big pay off.

Thursday, June 9, 2016

Homeowners Needs to Take Another Look At their Insurance Coverage As Hurricane Season Starts

Homeowners, insurance, homeowner insurance, coverage

Homeowners needs to reexamine their insurance coverage annually, specially those who live in places that are heavily affected by tropical storms. They need to know if the cost of their premiums are shooting up, or if their deductibles have changed, or if they are entitled to new discounts.

This year it's really important to do that because it is expected that hurricane will be most active this year since 2012, according to forecasts released by The Weather Company.
These storms are already affecting the southeast United States. Tropical storm Bonnie battered the Carolinas over Memorial Day weekend, and Colin, which made landfall Monday and resulted in state of emergency declared.

Colin which packed a 50 mile-per-hour winds produces heavy rain, tornadoes and hail that battered residents along Florida's Gulf and Atlantic Coasts. The residents protect their property using sandbags. Officials distributed 13,000 sandbags to residents of Tampa, which has a history of flooding. Some residents have evacuated the area.

This why it is important to reevaluate their homeowners insurance policy. Let's assume that the replacement cost value of the property is correct, a homeowners policy will cover any wind damage caused by a hurricane. However, it will not cover damage due to flooding and homeowners need to be aware of whether they have a hurricane deductible.

Insurance companies sell policies with a hurricane deductible to limit their exposure to devastating storms. Usually, these hurricane deductible is much higher than the standard one for homeowners insurance policies. A total of 19 states have hurricane deductibles, and most of them don't have a set dollar amount but a percentage of the replacement cost value of a home. That can be huge depending on the damage incurred. 

Insurers don't choose to have a hurricane deductible. This deductibles are incorporated in homeowners insurance at the discretion of the insurance company and are activated under the terms of the policy, usually when the National Hurricane Center issues a warning or names a tropical storm.

The Insurance Information Institute issue this different hurricane deductibles across the 19 states that have and it is posted on their website, or consumers can refer to their respective state's department of insurance for details on them.

The states with special storm deductibles include: Alabama, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Mississippi, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Texas and Virginia.

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Insurance Companies Join the Fight Against Opioid Epidemic

Opioid addiction, health insurance, insurance companies

Health insurance companies are now joining the fight against Opioid addiction. Cigna, a health insurance firm that insures about 14 million Americans, is the newest major health insurance provider to fight the staggering opioid addiction numbers and deaths. The company is targeting what experts are saying the number one cause of the addiction, over-prescribing of prescription painkillers like oxycodone, hydrocodone and morphine.
Opioid addiction, health insurance, insurance companies
Other insurance companies like Aetna and Blue Cross Blue Shield have also taken similar steps over the past several years to prevent deaths and pull down the numbers of people who get addicted to this drugs. It doesn't just save a lot of people, it also makes good business sense. According to research, it cost public and private insurance companies about $72.5 billion annually to deal with prescription painkiller abuse, treatment and “diversion” (when patients sell the medication instead of taking it).

Big health insurance companies do have access to prescription information for its customers. The have records every-time their customer fill a prescription using their insurance. Cigna’s new measure will be to flag customers who are deemed high-risk — either for getting large amounts of opioid medicines, for getting narcotics from different doctors or for being on the medicines for a long time and they will contact with those customers’ doctors.

The doctor can give their patients other treatment options if addiction is an issue. If the doctor feels the patient still needs to be prescribed long-term narcotics, Cigna can limit where the patient is able to pick the medicine up and which doctors are able to prescribe narcotics to them, so that the doctor is able to closely monitor whether that patient seems to be needing more and more painkillers.

Cigna is targeting to lessen the number of opioid prescriptions written to its customers by 25%, back to the number of prescriptions that were being written in 2006, which the insurer calls “pre-crisis.”

Monday, May 9, 2016

Smartphone Insurance 101

Smartphone Insurance, insurance, cellphone protection

Smartphone are expensive and easy to lose, break or stolen, this is why smartphone or cellphone insurance is in demand nowadays. Smartphone insurance covers lost, stolen or damaged phones. However, you should take note of the following information about this kind of insurance:

1. Deductible can be as much as the cost of the smartphone - iPhone 6S with a 2-year contract from Sprint is priced at $199.99. The Sprint’s Total Equipment Protection insurance costs $11 per month. Unfortunately for you if you lost or break your smartphone the insurance deductible will be $200.

This happens since carriers heavily subsidize smartphone prices if you purchased it with a contract. The retail price for an iPhone 6S is about $650. Installment plans, which often require no upfront payment for the phone, they simply spread its cost out over your contract term.

2. The Insurance Company will Determine the Replacement Smartphone - Your insurance company will have the final say on the replacement smartphone it may be of the same make and model, it maybe of different color or type. It may also be refurbished.

3. Carrier companies can dropped you from your plan for making a claim - Most insurance providers limits customers to two claims in a 12-month period. This can be a problem for people that are particularly accident-prone. The trouble is, those are the people for whom cellphone insurance makes the most sense.

Here are Cellphone protection plans:

AT&T -
Monthly fee: $7.99.
Deductible: $50-$199, depending on device. They offer declining deductible program that can give you 25% to 50% less.

AppleCare+ -
Cost: $99-$129 for two years of coverage.
Covers: Damage (two incidents) and phone malfunctions.
Deductible: $79 or $99 per incident, depending on model.

T-Mobile -
Monthly fee: $10.
Deductible: $20-$175.

Sprint -
Monthly fee: $9-$11
Deductible: $50-$200, depending on device.

SquareTrade -
Cost: $119 for two years of coverage.
Covers: Damage and phone malfunctions.
Deductible: $99 for all claims.

Verizon -
Monthly fee: $7.15 (smartphones), $5 (basic phones, tablets).
Deductible: $99-$199 (smartphones), $49-$199 (basic phones, tablets).

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Ride-hailing Insurance For Uber, Lyft and other Transportation Network Company (TNC) drivers

uber, TNC, grab, lyft, taxi

If you are an Uber, Lyft and other Transportation Network Company (TNC) driver you'll need more than your personal auto insurance because there are gaps in the coverage.

TNC services three Drive Period. 
Period 1:
App open – waiting for a match. 
Period 2:
Match accepted – but passenger not yet picked up (i.e. driver is on his/her way to pick up the passenger).  Period 3:
Passenger in the vehicle and until the passenger safely exits vehicle.

Ride-hailing coverage like that one that Mercury Insurance offer is design to fill the gaps and provide TNC drivers with insurance coverage that will protect them throughout the entire drive cycle. So if drivers get into an accident in any portion of the drive cycle and are liable they will be insured up to the limits of coverage purchased.

Mercury's ride-hailing insurance increases drivers' personal auto policies to cover Period 1 through Period 3 of the drive cycle, this will fill the gaps and gives the driver protection not provided by ride-hailing companies. Their ride-hailing insurance will also fix the insured's vehicle in a covered loss if those coverage have been purchased from Mercury.  In addition, if the policies provided by both the TNC and Mercury include coverage for the insured's vehicle, then the Mercury policy will pay for any "gap" between the higher deductible on the TNC policy and the lower deductible on the Mercury policy.

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

What To Do With Your Tax Refund?

You get tax refund when you overpaid the government it's not a bonus money since you earned it through hard work. After filing your taxes you'll find how much refund you're gonna get. If you have a huge tax refund, normally people will buy a new car or that new UHD TV that will blow your mind or a new game console. But if you're smart, just use it to pay off some of your debts. If you have no outstanding debts, then you can start or add some in your savings account.

You can also diversify your portfolio, save for your retirement, start a college fund for your children or add money to your emergency fund. However, you wouldn't want to gamble that money away. That will be a complete waste. Check out the Infographic below on "How to Make the Most of Your Tax Refund"

Click here for proceed to the Infographic

Thursday, March 31, 2016

California Legislature approves $15 minimum wage increase, will be highest in the US

California wage raise increase, $15 minimum wage

California lawmakers approved a sweeping plan on Thursday raising the minimum wage to $15 an hour over the next six years. This will be the nation’s highest statewide minimum wage and it will take effect by 2022.

The Assembly passed SB3 with a 48-26 vote. The the Senate voted 26-12, people cheered the move and "Si se puede" can be heard from the gallery above. The legislation now goes to Gov. Jerry Brown, who is expected to sign it into law after previously working out the plan with labor unions. Brown will sign the wage hike into law in Los Angeles on Monday.

Democrats who control both legislative chambers in California praised the move as a boon to more than 2 million of state’s poorest workers. Opponents complained it was rushed and did not include a wide group at the negotiating table. Business owners and economists fears that the yearly increases will be tied to inflation and will make California hostile to business.

The state of New York was considering a similar move.

Under the plan, California's hourly minimum wage would increase from the current $10 to $10.50 on January 1. Businesses with 25 or fewer employees would be given an extra year to comply. Increases of $1 an hour would come every January until 2022. The governor could delay increases in times of budgetary or economic downturns.

California’s current $10 an hour minimum is tied with Massachusetts for the highest among states. Los Angeles, Seattle and other cities have recently approved $15 minimum wages, while Oregon officials plan to increase the minimum to $14.75 an hour in cities and $12.50 in rural areas by 2022.

In New York, Gov. Cuomo and state lawmakers continued to negotiate Thursday over Cuomo’s proposal to gradually raise the state’s minimum wage from $9 to $15 by the end of 2018 in New York City and by mid-2021 elsewhere in the state.

Thursday, March 24, 2016

Long-Term Care Insurance Are Too Expensive

Long-Term Care Insurance, insurance

If you check out the prices of today's long term care insurance, I'm sure you'll ask who can afford them? They are just too expensive for the regular working class like us.

Long-term care insurance policies pay back policyholders a daily amount for services to assist them with activities of daily living such as bathing, dressing, transferring (to bed, chair, etc), housework, shopping for groceries or eating. Unlike traditional health insurance, long-term care insurance is designed to cover long-term services and supports, including personal and custodial care in a variety of settings such as your home, a community organization, or other facility.

In Pennsylvania, premiums have gone up as much as 130%, yearly rates have exceeded $8,000. So why are they so expensive? President of Rosenthal Wealth Management Group Larry Rosenthal said that nowadays, people are living longer and aren't necessarily living healthier. So insurance companies left the market since there are little or no profits and those that remain have increased premiums significantly to keep up with costs.

Here are some alternatives way to pay for Expensive Long-Term Care Insurance:

Short-term care insurance - this policy is like long-term care insurance, however the benefits are typically capped at one year. This policy is more affordable and they may also be available to older seniors or those who aren't otherwise eligible for long-term coverage.

Life + long-term care insurance - the combination of long-term care coverage and life insurance may help consumers avoid the type of rate increases currently being experienced in Pennsylvania.

Long-term care annuities - These annuities require a hefty upfront payment, but if you need long-term care, your overall cost may be lower than what you'd spend on insurance premiums.

Health savings accounts - For those who have an eligible high-deductible health insurance plan, a health savings account offers a way to put money aside tax-free for medical costs, such as long-term care.

Home equity - Retirees without significant investments may still own a valuable asset: their house. Tapping into home equity through a line of credit, taking out a reverse mortgage or selling a house outright are some of the ways people can use their property to pay for long-term care.

Pensions or Social Security - Depending on the size of your monthly payments and the amount of care you need, paying for services monthly out of a pension or Social Security benefit may be option.

Medicaid - if all else fail, and a person's income and assets have been depleted, the government will step in to pay for care. Medicaid won't pay for assisted living, but it will cover nursing home care and many states also pay for home health care services for eligible people.

Friday, March 11, 2016

2016 Car Insurance Rates Rankings by State

2016 Car Insurance Rates Rankings by State, vehicle insurance, car insurance

The state with the most expensive car insurance premiums in 2016 goes to Michigan, they bag the top spot for third year in a row in the’s 2016 state-by-state comparison of auto insurance premiums. Michigan average car insurance premiums is at $2738.
The 2nd spot goes to Montana at $2297, while New Jersey is in third with $1905.

Florida is the 8th spot they are paying an average of $1,654 annually for insurance, $329 higher than the nationwide average of $1,325.

Maine grabbed the No. 1 spot for the cheapest car insurance at $808 annually.

The rates are based on the average for the 20 best-selling vehicles in the U.S. in order to present more accurate rates for the average driver, without high-end sports or luxury cars skewing the data.

National average     $1325
1     Michigan     $2738
2     Montana     $2297
3     New Jersey     $1905
4     Louisiana     $1842
5     Oklahoma     $1778
6     DC             $1773
7     California     $1752
8     Florida     $1654
9     Maryland     $1610
10     Rhode Island     $1608
11     Delaware     $1607
12     Georgia     $1559
13     Texas             $1510
14     West Virginia     $1456
15     Wyoming     $1421
16     Colorado     $1393
17     Connecticut     $1367
18     South Carolina     $1353
19     Arkansas     $1345
20     Alabama     $1337
21     Massachusetts     $1325
22     Pennsylvania     $1305
23     Kentucky     $1295
24     New Mexico     $1277
25     Mississippi     $1277
26     Oregon             $1267
27     Minnesota     $1257
28     Nevada             $1221
29     North Dakota     $1200
30     Nebraska     $1188
31     Arizona     $1188
32     South Dakota     $1168
33     Washington     $1168
34     Tennessee     $1145
35     Kansas             $1135
36     Indiana     $1113
37     Alaska             $1078
38     Utah             $1061
39     Missouri     $1056
40     New York     $1050
41     Hawaii       $1049
42     Illinois     $1035
43     Virginia     $1020
44     Iowa        $989
45     North Carolina     $987
46     Vermont     $942
47     New Hampshire     $941
48     Idaho       $935
49     Wisconsin     $912
50     Ohio        $900
51     Maine       $808

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Donald Trump Health Care Reform Plan ( TrumpCare )

Donald Trump Health Care Reform Plan, Trumpcare, care

Donald Trump has repeatedly promised that he will not let people die on the streets. Today he has released his Trumpcare health care reform plan. His aim is to broaden the access of health care to the people. He is also for abolishing the individual mandate, which under Obamacare requires all Americans to have health insurance.

Donald Trump laid out his plan to reform the U.S. health care system after repeatedly pledging to repeal and replace Obamacare with something much better.

He posted his seven-point plan on his website ( Besides, scrapping the individual health insurance mandate he also promised to allow competition over states lines for health care plans, and block grant Medicaid to the states, this will let them follow through on his prescription to "eliminate fraud, waste and abuse to preserve our precious resources."

He will also make individual health insurance premium payments fully tax deductible.

His plan clearly is in line with conservatives. He will also "reduce the number of individuals needing access to programs like Medicaid." "The best social program has always been a job and taking care of our economy will go a long way towards reducing our dependence on public health programs."

His plan also requires "price transparency" to let patients to "shop and find the best prices" for their medical care and removing the barriers to entry that currently make it more difficult for cheaper drugs from overseas to enter the American health care market.

He also calls for "reform our mental health programs and institutions in this country. Families, without the ability to get the information needed to help those who are ailing, are too often not given the tools to help their loved ones. There are promising reforms being developed in Congress that should receive bi-partisan support."