How To Select Affordable Health Insurance For Low Income Families

Possibly the best option for low income families searching for affordable health insurance is a subsidy. When it comes to health insurance, subsidies are federal- or state-sponsored health care programs for individuals who meet certain criteria. The federal or state government provides financial assistance to health care providers to begin and continue low cost or free health care to low income families.

If you’re a low income family and believe a subsidy may be right for you, keep the following in mind:

Income requirements Find the income requirements of the subsidy in which you’re interested. Most subsidies base income requirements on the number of people in your family. Which means, in order to be eligible, you must meet a particular monthly income based on the number of family members.

Children Some subsidies only offer health care to entire families if there are children in the families. The age limit for children is usually 19 years old.

Location Most cities, or at least counties, have some kind of health insurance subsidy for low income families. However, if you don’t like the subsidy in your area it doesn’t always mean you can travel to the next city or county. Some affordable health insurance subsidies only provide health care to low income families living in that particular area.

Your needs What kinds of health care needs do you and your family members require? Most medical clinics sponsored by subsidies provide preventative and treatment care for specific female and male needs (Pap smears, STD checks, family planning, screenings of reproductive organs, etc.) as well as limited treatment for common colds, the flu, allergic reactions, etc. However, actual affordable health insurance plans (that don’t rely on walk-in clinics) are usually more thorough. Make sure you understand what care you can and can’t get before selecting a subsidy for your low income family.

Contact the Bureau of Primary Health Care for a subsidy in your area.

How To Select Affordable California Health Insurance Online

When selecting affordable California health insurance online or in any state, for that matter you must be cautious. Other than the information provided on the website database you search, you’re basically taking care of everything yourself. Sure, you can contact, or may be contacted by, a live health insurance agent from the company, but until then your decision-making process may be a blind one unless you enter into it prepared.

Your Eligibility

Before you begin searching for affordable California health insurance online, find out if you’re eligible for employer-sponsored group health insurance or COBRA. Also check out the following California-based health insurance programs: Access for Infants, CalWorks, Family Medical Leave Act, Healthy Families, and Medi-Cal. You can find information about these state-sponsored health insurance programs when you visit the California Department of Insurance website.

Your Search

As you’re searching for affordable California health insurance online, make sure you fully understand the difference between a health insurance policy and a health discount plan. Health discount plans, or medical discount plans, provide discounts for health care. The discount plan usually has a network of doctors and other health care professionals from which you can choose. If you see a doctor who doesn’t participate in the discount plan, you’re stuck paying the full price.

Always read the fine print to know what you’re getting into. Before you select affordable health insurance in California, make sure it’s actually insurance and not a medical discount plan.

Your Aid

The California Department of Insurance has a very informative website available to all consumers. The site outlines the different kinds of health insurance available, including those that are state-sponsored, and even provides a health plan comparison tool. Utilize these free resources to help you select affordable California health insurance online.

Remember, you can also use the California Department of Insurance website to file complaints regarding unsettled insurance claims and other such problems with your health insurance company.

How To Select A Combined Home And Auto Insurance Online

When you purchase more than one kind of insurance policy from the same company, you’re usually purchasing what’s called a “multi-line policy.” Some insurance companies may refer to this as a “combined policy.” Regardless of the name, most insurance companies offer discounts for these kinds of multi-insurance purchases. This means you could save loads of money on premiums by purchasing more than one kind of insurance policy from a company with which you’re already doing business. Cheaper and easier? It just makes sense.

If you already have a homeowner insurance policy, or an auto insurance policy, ask an agent or representative if your insurance company provides the opposite kind of insurance coverage, too (home or auto, whichever relates to your situation). Since purchasing both kinds of insurance coverage will most likely make you eligible for a discount, your insurance company undoubtedly has its own special procedures to get you signed up with a combined home and auto insurance policy.

If you don’t already have either kind of insurance policy, what are you waiting for? While homeowner insurance isn’t always required, auto insurance is required in all states. Get two birds with one stone by searching online for combined home and auto insurance. The process for shopping around for multi-line insurance isn’t much different than shopping for only one kind of insurance.

Simply search for insurance companies that handle both auto insurance and home insurance. Follow the same steps as you normally would (check coverage and price, research financial rating and customer complaints, and talk with current customers), then set up an appointment with an agent with the company to discuss getting set up with combined home and auto insurance.

It’s pretty easy to purchase auto insurance online; however, purchasing homeowner insurance isn’t always so cut and dry. When you’re ready to actually purchase combined home and auto insurance, it’d be in your best interest to speak with a live agent.

How To Save When Buying Term Life Insurance

Term Life Insurance

Term life insurance has always been known to be a cost effective vehicle to protect your family should you pass away unpredictably. It offers basic, no-nonsense coverage so that your spouse and children could continue living in the same fashion you have accustomed them to while you were alive and working. Even though term life insurance is comparatively inexpensive, it would still be wise to shop out the different carriers as policies vary, as do premiums and provisions. The following are some ideas on how to save even more money when buying term life insurance.

Term Life Insurance Quotes

As noted, it is a good idea to shop out a few carriers to see who would best suit your needs as well as your lifestyle. For example, some companies charge differently for an extreme sport that is a huge part of your lifestyle. If you mountain climb, for instance, one company may charge more for that risk than another carrier. It is wise to either gain multiple term life insurance quotes or have a reputable financial advisor do the footwork for you.

Make sure you ask your financial advisor for carrier price breaks. Some companies offer a break in price if you purchase a certain face value. You could actually end up saving money by choosing a higher face value. If you qualify (policies are also based on current employment) you could end up paying just a couple dollars more for a $500,000.00 policy versus a $250,000.00 policy. Doubling your face value for just a couple of dollars would pay off greatly for your survivors should the unthinkable happen.

After you get your term life insurance quote and choose the best policy, make sure to ask about your payment/billing options. Many life insurance companies offer discounts to individuals who choose to pay their premiums annually, or who pay monthly by electronic funds transfer (EFT).

It is also important to review your term life insurance rates at least ever three years, if not annually. Life changes so often in this fast paced environment that circumstances such as divorce or a birth of a new child will affect your financial needs or your desire to scale back. Term life insurance prices also change annually so depending on the kind of protection you need; you want to give yourself plenty of time to put a new policy in place to avoid overlapping coverage.

Age Makes a Difference

Although many people wait to buy insurance until they are a bit more settled financially and have acquired more assets, term life insurance is less expensive when you buy while you are younger. Term life insurance rates go up as you get older and keep in mind that your “half birthday” may make a difference in the premium that you will pay. Most term life insurance companies will increase the rates on their policies six months before your actual birthday. This is known as “the age nearest” in the insurance industry. While the amount of increase might seem negligible to you, a few dollars perhaps, those few dollars add up over the years especially when purchasing a 20 or 30-year policy. Also, it is best to buy while you are young because presumably you are in better health than the older population. Your chances of getting full approval without restrictions are better when you are in good health and your medical exams come back clean.

Buy Term and Invest the Rest

Truly, by doing a little homework you can save even more on a term life insurance policy. Follow the traditional saying, “Buy Term and Invest the Rest.” You will not only have the financial security your family deserves but you can build a healthy nest egg by investing your savings into a higher interest-earning vehicle.

How To Save On Your Homeowner’s Insurance

Copyright 2006 Stacey Zimmerman

When you take out a mortgage on your home, the lender will require you to show proof of homeowner’s insurance on the property. The lender wants to protect their investment. However, whether or not you have a mortgage on your property or not, you should have homeowner’s insurance to protect yourself in case of loss.

The biggest mistake most homeowners make when getting homeowner’s insurance is purchasing coverage they don’t need. For example, living in a high elevated area should mean they you do not need to carry flood insurance. Many homeowners find themselves paying for flood insurance when there is no possibility of being flooded. However, if you live in an area that could easily be flooded, make sure you do carry this extra flood insurance on your property.

Another item to check on is how far away you live from the fire department, as well as a fire hydrant. The closer you live to either one of these could significantly reduce your rates. Your insurance agent should ask you for this information, however, if they don’t, make sure you give the information to them to see if it could lower your rates.

If you are like many homeowners, you may find that you have your life insurance with one company and your auto insurance with another. If you have all of your insurance policies with the same company, it could give you as much as a twenty percent discount on your insurance rates. You may also want to ask your insurance agent about how much you can save by raising your deductible on your homeowner’s insurance.

Another way to save on your homeowner’s insurance is to ask them what type of discounts you would be entitled to if you made changes to your property. By adding security measures, such as an alarm system or even double locks on doors and windows, may entitle you to several discounts.

If you are the owner of a dog, you’ll want to make sure your insurance agent is aware that you have one. Unfortunately, if you have a dog that is on the list of dangerous dogs to have, it may either raise your rates or they may not insure you at all. In order to protect yourself, however, you’ll want to check with them to find out where your dog fits in to the picture and you may end up making further security measures regarding your dog. A large fenced in area for your dog may help to reduce your rates.

Another important matter is renter’s insurance. This only applies to you if you have a rental unit in your home, but it will protect you and your renter’s for any loss of items due to an unforeseen incident in your home, such as theft or fire. Many landlords require their renters to provide proof of renter’s insurance before they move in. If they do not have renter’s insurance, the loss of their items may fall back on you.

The most important thing you can do to save money on your homeowner’s insurance is to price compare your home insurance once every year. Make sure if you have made any updates to your property, you update your current insurance company. Insurance companies, along with their rates, change quickly and if you’ve had the same insurance company for years, you might be surprised at how much you could’ve saved over the years.

How to Save on Your Auto Insurance like George Bush

Copyright 2006 David Maillie

The price of gas just keeps on going up and has no apparent relief in site (probably due more to George Bush’s close personal ties to big oil and the middle east than anything else). This in turn is driving up inflation and the cost of almost everything we buy or need including auto or car insurance. Here’s how to turn the tables in your favor and save money on your auto insurance like George Bush would if he had to pay for his auto insurance.

We’ve all seen the commercials and mailings for Progressive and Geico telling us to get online and compare auto insurance companies and get competing quotes. There is a good reason for this it will save you money. In most cases, shopping for auto insurance quotes online will save you big money (the average online auto insurance shopper pays 38% less in auto insurance premiums). Get online and shop your auto insurance. You will save money.

It also helps to drive defensively and safely. According to the National Foundation for Highway and Traffic Safety, aggressive drivers cause 90% of all accidents and pay 30 70% more in auto insurance premiums. Take a defensive driving course. Many technical and community colleges offer these courses and they may also reduce points on your license and DMV record. That leads to another important way of saving money on your auto insurance – get points removed from your license. You get points for things like speeding, not stopping for a stop sign, running a red light, and not waving to George Bush (Just kidding). These points cause immediate rate increases on your auto insurance. Most states offer free or nearly free courses that will reduce the points on your license for most infractions (except for drunk driving and driving under the influence you have to have a powerful name like Kennedy or Bush and then you get driven home).

Another way to save money on your auto insurance is to increase your deductible and assume more risk.. You will save money by, for instance, going from a $250 deductible to a $1000 deductible. One word of caution, do not drop uninsured and under insured motorists coverage. Due to George Bush and his lenient policy in the past with illegal aliens in our country from Mexico we now have over 20 million illegal and uninsured motorists in America.

Another great way to save money on your auto insurance is to drive a vehicle with a low theft rate. It is a proven fact that auto insurance companies charge higher premiums based on car brand and model theft rates. Since George Bush did practically nothing to stop these illegal aliens from Mexico we now have millions of them and they love to steal cars as some have found it easier than purchasing and they love Honda Civics and Accords. We don’t hear of many of them tooling around in a Mazda or a minivan. Maybe if George Bush invoked trade restrictions with Mexico this would change and jobs would come back to America?

Joining professional groups like AAA. AARP, etc can also save you money on your auto insurance as you may be entitled to group rates. There are many other ways also. Now you know how to save money on your auto insurance and why we are earning less and executives at big oil are earning more and more (George Bush takes care of his friends). Also, I don’t know if it’s a republican thing, but lets think before we put a Bush in a political office in the future. If you haven’t yet had the opportunity, please watch Farenheit 9/11 and learn more about George Bush and his brother in Florida.

How To Save On Your Auto Insurance

Let your fingers do the walking Remember that Yellow Pages Ad Campaign? Excellent advice if you’re shopping for auto insurance. Shop around and do it yearly. Don’t just keep paying the invoice over and over without comparison shopping. Below are a few suggestions to help you get the best deal available on your automobile insurance policy.

Insurance agents really have a lot of leeway. They can price match and they can offer many discounts. There are also many decisions you can make about your policy that will save you a bundle. For example, if you change your deductible on your collision from a $50 deductible to a $1000 deductible, you’re inline for a huge premium savings. If you don’t think you could come up with $1000 out of pocket, then change it to a $500 deductible; you’ll still save a sizable amount on your annual premium payment.

You can also get more of a savings if you change your comprehensive deductible. Many people needlessly carry full coverage on their older vehicle. They originally purchased the vehicle new, paid for full coverage and to this day, continue to pay the same high rate. Their ten year old vehicle may be worth $1000 or less, yet they continue to pay $250-$450 every six months (total $500 to $900 dollars a year) to keep full coverage on their old vehicle.

However, if they have an accident and totaled their vehicle, the insurance company will only pay them the wholesale value of the vehicle. The amount they would receive could be $1000 or less. A vehicle that old just needs the insurance that protects the other person in case of an accident.

Another method to save more on your insurance is by combining your vehicles and other insurance together to get you additional savings. All insurance companies offer a multi-car discount (if yours doesn’t, it’s time to switch companies). Further, many will discount more if you have your homeowners or renters policy with them.

There are a few other discounts that you may not be taking advantage of. It seems obvious, but make sure you are getting the correct rate for your age. There are discounts for various ages than can save you lots of money. Check with your agent on this one. Also alarm systems on your vehicle are usually good for a discount. Additionally, anti-lock brakes and air bags can also help lower your premiums.

Don’t just keep paying the invoice when it comes in. Your insurance bill should be an automatic trigger for you to make a few phone calls to see if you can save even more money on your auto insurance premiums.

How to Save on Car Insurance

Everyone who owns a car needs auto insurance. This article will give you some tips on lowering your auto insurance costs. You will find a checklist of items to ask your insurance agent that may qualify for discounts. Keep in mind that not all discounts can be applied with all insurance companies in all states.

1. Shop Around

Go to your favorite search engine and type in “free car insurance quotes online”. You’ll see a long list of insurance companies that you may even be familiar with. Visit at least five car insurance websites and look for a link to free quotes. You will then be asked basic information about yourself, your driving history, and your car’s make, model, and year. It just takes a couple of minutes, and shortly thereafter, they will email you a no obligation quote. Write down their website address, their toll free number, and customer service email address.

Each insurance company will ask you generally the same questions, and will give you options about how much coverage you will want. Find your current policy, if you have one, and take note of the coverage you currently have. Always provide the same information and ask for the same coverage at each company so you will be comparing apples to apples. Read the fine print and make sure nothing is excluded from the quote like Rental car coverage, towing, medical, etc…

For the purposes of the quote, the insurance company will not ask you your social security number, but keep in mind your actual cost maybe higher or lower depending on your credit history. If you’re not sure about some of the terminology or coverage, take notes so that you can ask the insurance company about them directly.

Once you have at least five quotes emailed to you, take the lowest two or three quotes and see if they are less than what you are paying now. Most likely at least one of them is much lower. At this point you will want to call them directly to get the most accurate quote by providing additional personal information. For additional discounts, here is a checklist of things you should ask about.

[ ] $500 deductible

[ ] $1,000 deductible

[ ] Paying monthly, semi-annually, or annually

[ ] More than 1 car

[ ] No Accidents in 3 Years

[ ] No Moving Violations in 3 Years

[ ] Driver Training Courses

[ ] Defensive Driving Courses

[ ] Anti-Theft Devices

[ ] Low Annual Mileage

[ ] Air Bags

[ ] Anti-Lock Brakes

[ ] Daytime Running Lights

[ ] Student Drivers with Good Grades

[ ] Auto and Homeowners Coverage with the Same Company

[ ] College Students away from Home

[ ] Long-Time Customer

[ ] Other Discounts

2. Saving Insurance Premium on cars you own outright.

If you own a clear title to your car, meaning there is no bank loan on it, then you may want to consider dropping the collision/comprehensive coverage. As a rule of thumb, if the cars value is less than $3000, it may not make sense for you to pay for this additional coverage. Over time, the cost of the additional insurance premium will exceed the value of the car. It’s pretty simple math.

Check the fair market value of your car either through or even your local newspaper. See what other people are trying to get for the same car. Keep in mind your cars mileage, condition, and age. Has it been in an accident before? Does it have unusually high mileage in excess of 15,000 miles per year? Does it need new tires? You get the idea. Be realistic, because in the event that this car is in an accident and is damaged beyond repair, it is unlikely you will get the full value of the car.

3. Ask About Insurance Rates in Different Areas

Rates can vary widely even in the same state. Different locals have different accident rates, population, and crime. These all factor in to the final cost. If you are moving to a different area, ask about what the rates are for that town.

4. Ask About Getting Other Insurance Policies Together With Your Auto Insurance

Combining insurance policies with the same company can often give you additional discounts. If you own a home, ask about combining your homeowners insurance with your auto insurance. Also ask about other polices, such as life, health, and business insurance. Most insurance companies cover a wide range of policies and will give substantial discounts when you do business exclusively with them.

5. A Clean Credit History Can Reduce Car Premiums:

Having good credit can also lower your insurance costs. Many insurance companies will use credit information to price auto insurance policies. Drivers with good credit and a clean driving record may qualify as a “preferred” customer with lower risk and will be rewarded with lower premiums.

6. Low Mileage Discounts

Some companies offer discounts to drivers who drive a lower than average number of miles per year. If you car pool, take public transportation like the subway, or work from home, you will most likely drive few miles per year than the average driver.

7. Group Insurance

Some insurers offer discounts to drivers who work for certain companies or belong to professional associations, and alumni groups. Ask your employer, group or clubs that you belong to if they have any special arrangements with different insurance companies.

Using all of these tips can save you hundreds of dollars per year, especially when you have multiple cars and multiple drivers in the same household.

How To Save Money On Your Pet Insurance

Here in Britain we are a nation of pet lovers and treat our pets like we do ourselves and our children, this includes giving them the best food, treats, toys, care and of course the best in health care by way of a vet. However when it comes to our pets they can also cost us a fortune, especially if you should have to visit the vet. However much we love our pets the bills for x-rays and medication can be sky high, however you can insure your pet. Insuring your pet doesn’t have to as expensive as you might think and could save you money in the long run.

Insurance for your pet isn’t limited to paying out when it comes to vet bills, most insurance taken out for your pet includes for other eventualities that can arise. For example should your pet be stolen then most insurance companies will pay out for a reward offered.

One way of having money for any eventuality to cover your pet, is to not actually go with an insurance company but instead set up an account which is solely for your pet and deposit money either as a lump sum or put away a little each month and allow it to build up in case you should need it. This can often work out cheaper than paying actual premiums through an insurer.

However if you wish to go with an insurer then shop around for the best deal with the cheapest premium, things you should take into account when it comes to purchasing insurance include the amount of excess that you pay. If you pay more excess then your premium will be lower.

Also watch out for hereditary conditions being excluded, many breeds have certain conditions which are know to be passed from generation to generation so make sure your pet doesn’t fall into this category or insurance could be worthless.

Finally take into account if there is a maximum pay out limit per year. Some policies will only pay out to a set limit, if you have an older animal that needs regular treatment then it might not be covered.