Tips to Saving for College

If you have kids, you will want them to go to college, but you also know that the cost of a college education isn’t cheap, and they are only rising. If you want college to be a part of your kid’s future, there are some things you can do today to make college a reality.

Create a Separate Account

Create an account where you will not touch the funds. For example, don’t start saving money for your kid’s education by putting money into the same savings account that you may have to dip into when you need money for other things. You will never be able to save enough money that way. Instead, put the money into an account strictly for education and nothing else, and only add to this account when you can financially do so.

Consider Investing the Money

You may want to consider investing the money in any number of ways to make your money grow. It’s a good idea to invest your money in a low risk account, such as a savings account or CD. In this way your money can safely grow without risking any loss.

Many states now offer education savings accounts where you can essentially “lock in” current tuition rates to pay for your child’s education years later. To take advantage of this savings account, you will need to choose how much tuition coverage you will want to use. Once this amount is determined, you can have the option to pay this rate all at once or through installments.

Take Advantage of Your Current Investments

You may want to consider using your current investment or retirement accounts to borrow money against yourself. This is a popular option with certain types of accounts, like the 401k or 403b. You will have to pay the money back with interest, but the interest rates are low, and you are still putting this money towards your retirement.

As you can see, there are plenty of options available for getting or saving the money you need to pay for your child’s college tuition. The key thing to remember is that, like any other investment, it takes time and organization to plan for college.

There Has to be an Easier Way – Life Insurance

Everyone knows that life insurance is an important fact of life. Departing from this world does not wipe out all of your debt, take care of children or fill the income void. But the complexity, expense and fine print often drives people into placing this sensitive subject on the back burner until it is too late. Here are some tips for buying life insurance so you can make a swift and educated decision on taking out a life insurance plan.

Two Choices in Plans

There are only two different types of insurance policies to choose from, whole and term. Always select term insurance to keep a plan simple and inexpensive. Whole insurance pays huge commissions to an agent plus uses your premiums to invest in market funds. It takes years to realize any type of equity in this type of plan. Whole insurance was once popular before there were so many investment plans available. Premiums for term insurance go toward one cause only, payment upon death.

How Much to Buy?

If you have a family that is dependent on your income, take your yearly salary and multiply by ten. If you are single and have little reason for leaving a large sum of money to family, buy enough to cover your burial and current expenses. Just remember, as you age situations change and a term policy will become more expensive the older you become.

Buy Online

Local agents are not really significant. Once you have a term plan for a set period of time, that is all you need. A local agent will only suggest plans that will benefit his or her commissions. The Internet offers thousands of companies, many with price comparisons and simple payment plans. Limit your search by eliminating insurance companies with poor ratings and questionable pasts. Your plan will be of little use if your life insurance company suddenly goes out of business.

Make the decision to get adequate coverage for your personal situation and stick to it. Once you know what type of policy to buy, how much you need and where to receive without hassle, simply make the payments. Insurance does not have to be complicated or expensive and that nagging little voice that reminds you to get coverage will be gone for good.

4 Easy Ways to Save Money

People are always looking for ways to trim their expenses, so they can save for the future. A few commonsense changes to your spending habits can help you build a substantial nest egg in a short while. Simply take all the money you gain by cutting down on a few non-essentials, and squirrel it away into a high-yield savings account. Your fortune will grow before your eyes, opening new doors of possibility for travel or whatever else your heart desires.

#1 Buy Used

Shiny new cars on the dealer’s lot and gleaming laptops in the electronics store may look appealing, but their sticker price is significantly higher than models that are as little as six months older. Consider purchasing pre-owned items from reputable sellers and you will save a small fortune.

#2 Brew at Home

A store bought cup of plain coffee can cost you two dollars plus tip every day. Not to mention the added expense if you opt for a latte or cappuccino. Consider purchasing quality coffee beans and brewing your own cup of coffee each day at home. This way, you can drink great java for what it would cost you to tip your barista and save the rest.

#3 Dine In

While special occasions may rightfully warrant a night out at a restaurant, there is no real reason to spend a ton of money eating out several nights each week. If you are crunched for time, simply cook a huge batch of pasta or start a slow-cooker meal on your way out to work and it will be ready for you by the time you get home. You will save a lot of money by eating in, plain and simple.

#4 Let Nature Entertain

The cost of movie tickets, bar tabs, and amusement park admissions add up quickly. Change a few of your monthly outings to free forays into nature: a long hike, a trip to the beach, an exploration of your local parks. You will save money, and get yourself into better shape with all that exercise. You don’t have to start eating granola or wearing hemp jewelry, just change things up every once and a while and save significant folding cash in the process.

These four simple money-saving ideas will help you cut your monthly expenses, allowing you to put some money away each month toward major purchases. None of these ideas will drastically alter your quality of life, but they will definitely trim your expenditures.

Investment Tips

If you don’t want to spend your retirement living in a studio apartment and eating Spam and Ramen noodles, it’s important to take investing seriously. You don’t have to be an expert if you follow a few tips.

The first rule you should follow is to invest in a 401k at work if you have one available. It would be great to invest to the max, but that’s not realistic. What you should do, at a minimum, is invest enough to get any matching funds your employer offers, even if it means skimping in other areas, such as emergency savings. If your company matches contributions dollar for dollar up to 2 percent of your pay, then you should contribute at least 2 percent. Otherwise, you are forgoing free money.

In addition to investing in a 401k, you should also invest in an individual retirement account if you can afford to. The government lets you invest up to $5,000 annually ($6,000 if you are 50 or older) in this tax-deferred account. You can choose either a traditional IRA, in which you exempt your contributions and earnings from taxes until you withdraw them in retirement, or a Roth IRA, in which you pay taxes up front but then never have to pay taxes again, no matter how much money your investments make.

No matter what retirement accounts you invest in, you need to make sure you know what your goals are, your time frame and how much risk you are willing to accept. For example, if you are young and expect to have a guaranteed pension when you retire, you may be more willing to make risky investments in your other retirement accounts in exchange for the possibility of large returns. In this case, you would likely invest most of your money in stocks. If, on the other hand, you are nearing retirement and need your retirement accounts to fund most of your retirement spending, you would want to be more conservative, keeping more of your money in bonds and cash.

A final rule to follow when investing for retirement is to leave your money alone. Tapping your retirement accounts early (usually before age 59 1/2) not only drains your retirement savings, it can also result in a 10-percent tax penalty.

Getting the Most Out of Travel Insurance

Before taking a trip, purchasing a travel insurance policy should be a top priority. While most travelers don’t stop to think about the need for travel insurance, it can actually provide a number of benefits. This type of coverage can provide help while you are away from home and in need of assistance.

Travel insurance is designed to pay benefits where other insurance policies stop short. For example, if you are traveling to a foreign country, your medical insurance probably well the cover you if you are injured or become sick. In this situation, travel insurance will kick in and help you pay for your medical care. It can even pay to have you transported back to your home country if you are injured.

Travel coverage also make it possible to avoid losing money when your plans change. For example, if you have to cancel your trip, it can reimburse you for any cancellation fees or money that you miss out on because of the cancellation. If you lose your bags while traveling, the travel insurance can pay you for your lost possessions.

When looking for a travel insurance policy, it is important to review the terms and conditions that the insurance company provides. For example, some insurance policies only cover a single trip while multi-trip travel insurance covers multiple traveling arrangements. If you are a frequent traveler, you may want to get a multi-trip policy so that you don’t have to shop for a policy every time you travel. With a multi-trip policy, you can sometimes get a discount compared to buying individual coverage for each trip that you take.

Before deciding on policy, you should also check to see what types of benefits the policy provides. For example, some policies only provide air travel benefits that pay if you are injured while on a flight. Others provide medical coverage and reimburse you for trip cancellation fees. Every policy is different and they all have unique benefits options for you to consider.

When comparing policies, it is important to make sure that you are comparing apples to apples. Make sure that you’re looking at policies that have the same coverage limits and the same options. For example, you cannot compare a flight insurance policy against a comprehensive travel insurance policy. Once you are sure that you are comparing the same types of policies, you can compare one policy against another.

Car Rental Insurance Tips

If you are planning to rent a car, you should probably consider purchasing the additional car rental insurance that the car rental company offers. The insurance can provide you with several benefits and peace of mind. However, before investing in the insurance, find out what coverage is available to you and discover additional tips that you should consider to save you money on your car rental insurance.

Types of Coverage

Car rental insurance companies offer a variety of coverage options. Some types of coverage include:

Collision Damage Waiver

By not signing this waiver, you will be responsible for the cost of any damage that occurs to the vehicle. You may pay only the deductible, but you could pay up to the total value of the vehicle. With the waiver, you are released from any liability that may result in you driving and damaging the vehicle.

Personal Accident Insurance

This optional insurance provides coverage for death or medical expenses that may result if you are in a serious accident while you are driving the rental vehicle.

Personal Effects Coverage

This coverage is also optional and protects against damages to personal belongings that result from loss or theft while the belongings are located within the rental car.

Additional Liability Insurance

This coverage protects you in case you are in an accident with another party. The coverage pays for the other driver’s medical bills and property damage.

Check the Fine Print

Even if you purchase car rental insurance, the coverage may not apply under certain situations. For example, if you are driving recklessly or on unauthorized roads.

Shop Around

When you are considering renting a vehicle, check on the price of car rental insurance. Even if a vehicle is more expensive than a competitor’s quote, a lower price for the insurance policy can make it a better deal.

Thanks to Cheap Auto Insurance for these state specific links:

Alaska

wyoming

Check Your Current Coverage

Some portions of car rental insurance may be covered by existing insurance coverage that you have. For example, your auto insurance policy may already provide liability coverage. Additionally, your current auto insurance policy may cover any damage that results while you are driving in the rental car and you are in an accident. Your credit card may offer coverage for rental vehicles if you used the credit card to secure the rental.

Car rental insurance can provide you with a great peace of mind, but check your existing coverage so you only purchase the coverage you need.

Tips for Getting Health Insurance

It is vitally important that everyone carries some type of health insurance. The truth is that you never know when an emergency will occur, and it is a good idea to be prepared for the inevitable by having the right coverage. The average trip to the emergency room will cost thousands of dollars. Because of this, it is imperative that you have insurance so that you can be sure that the price of your hospital visit does not fall completely into your own pocket. By following these few simple tips, you will be able to get the coverage that you need at a price you will easily be able to afford.

The first step in getting health insurance is to determine which company you would like to get it from. You should do an online quote to see which company is best for your needs. Some companies charge more than others, while others will tack on fees and charges that you do not necessarily want. Once you actually open a policy, you will want to look and see what the coverage includes. If you notice that it includes a lot of things you do not want or need, you can ask the insurance provider to remove these from your policy.

Another great method to saving money on health insurance would be taking a physical examination. Many insurance companies do not require that you go for a physical to get coverage, though they can reduce your coverage costs if you do go for one. The insurance company just wants to see if you are a health risk or if you are generally healthy on a day-to-day basis. For instance, smokers will often have higher insurance rates than nonsmokers. Quitting smoking is one of the quickest ways to lower your rate by hundreds of dollars a year.

Health insurance is really very important if you want to be able to live a comfortable life that includes the right medical care if needed. So many individuals do not have this type of insurance, and they are often faced with ridiculous fees if they have to visit the emergency room. Health insurance does not have to be expensive. It just takes a little research on your part to find a company that will really go out of their way for you. This ensures that you and your family are well taken care of at all times.

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