Saturday, July 30, 2011

Benefits of a Local Agent – How to Find Them and What to Ask

Choosing individual health insurance from a local independent health insurance agent allows you to settle a deal face to face. This human aspect of purchasing insurance is quickly depleting, but you can still make use of a personable agent who can literally sit down with you and find the coverage you need. There are a number of benefits of working with a local independent health insurance agent.

Filing an insurance claim when you have a local agent is much easier as well. Even though no one imagines they will need to file a claim, it’s always a possibility. With an agent on your side, you have someone to defend your rights instead of going up against the insurance company all on your own.

Insurance coverage can be expensive, and with a local agent, you can save money. Ironically, the opposite—that working with a local agent is more expensive—is often assumed. If you find the right agent, this assumption is absolutely false, especially when you consider the personal attention you receive to secure the perfect coverage.

How to find them
  • A local independent insurance agent is what you will be seeking for the best insurance buying experience possible. Ask friends and family members who they have worked with on a local level and what their experience was like.
  • Outside your social circle, you can conduct your own research online. Check out the Alpine Agency and what they have to offer in terms of individual health insurance, guaranteed issue health insurance, Medicare supplement plans, and life insurance. Getting started with a local agent here is easy.

What to ask

  • Before you settle with one agent or another, inquire about their experience and training. If you get a negative feeling from anyone you talk to over the phone, continue your research until you find the perfect local agent for you.
  • Along with assessing the agent’s credentials, you need to find out more about the coverage you can receive when choosing individual health insurance plans. Ask about your right to choose your own doctor or hospital, how specialist referrals work, what the exclusions are, specific benefits of one plan over another, and of course what the premiums, deductibles, and co-payments will be.

Friday, July 29, 2011

Health Insurers Need to Improve Customer Relationships to Compete

Nearly 50 percent of health customers are willing to pay more for quality customer service -- a factor U.S. health insurers need to address to effectively compete for new clients -- according to a new survey from Accenture.

Accenture conducted a survey of 1,000 insured individuals to assess the impact of customer service on consumer preferences and found that nearly 80 percent expect customer services to be easier, more convenient.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

8 Toughest Retirement Decisions

For past generations, planning for retirement was a relatively simple process. When someone reached retirement age, they threw a party, turned the job over to someone else and went home to live on their company pension. Retirement planning nowadays is a radically different proposition that involves asset allocation, retirement plan rollovers, transfers and distributions and a series of life choices. There are several tough decisions that most people must make when they stop working. The most difficult of these choices includes:  
1. When to Retire
Those who are willing to work a few more years can usually enjoy a considerably better standard of living than those who retire early. But deciding when to retire can also be complicated by the possibility of layoff, early retirement incentive packages, personal health and other factors. 

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Chimp Brain Bigger Than Humans?

Unlike the brain of our closest living relatives, the chimpanzees, particular parts of our human brain shrink in volume as we age, probably as an evolutionary consequence of our longer lifespan, suggest US researchers who report how they used MRI scans of chimps' brains to arrive at their findings in an early online issue of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences published on 25 July 2011. 

Read full story here...

Friday, July 15, 2011

Retirees Need Less Stocks, More Annuities

*This article can also be accessed if you copy and paste the entire address below into your web browser.

Posted via email from bnice's posterous

What is Short Term Health Insurance?

I know this guy Stephen and he just started a new job that offers health benefits to its employees, but not for the first 60 days.  He looked into COBRA from his previous job, but it was way too expensive.

This is where Short Term health insurance fits best.  It also works well for college students, and kids who can't get coverage on their own.  This policy offers catastrophic coverage for people temporarily without coverage.  He can get coverage for 30, 60, 90, or 120 days.  

This is a completely paperless process.  Your application and enrollment materials will all be sent and received electronically.

It is also considered creditable coverage so it bridges the gap perfectly for group plans.  Plans start at $20

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Women and Health

More than any other demographic, women seem to have slipped through the cracks of the health care system. One in five women is currently uninsured; another 15 percent are on federal assistance programs. Historically, this has been in part due to gender rating, a common practice in which insurers charge women more than men for the same policy — sometimes by as much as 50 percent.
Fortunately, systems such as these are starting to be outlawed and women stand to gain more affordable access to care.
Read Full Article Here

New Baby... Buy Insurance

You’ve just had your first baby boy. Or maybe it was a little girl. Either way, congratulations. You don’t need us to tell you that life is going to change, and change quickly. You’ve no doubt already become accustomed to the idea of sleepless nights, midnight feedings, dirty diapers, and all of that kind of stuff. But what you may not have thought about with the birth of your baby is term life insurance.
But, you should. After all, there’s someone depending on you and your income now. If you haven’t already scheduled an appointment with your insurance agent, do so. You’ll want to adjust the amount of your term life insurance. And if you don’t have any life insurance yet, you’ll want to invest in some immediately.
Think about it. That little guy is totally dependant on your income. If you were to die today, what would happen? Who would pay for:
  • Diapers
  • Food (18-20 some years’ worth of groceries is a lot)
  • Health Insurance
  • College Tuition
Of course, there are a lot more expenses that junior will have growing up, but our purpose here is just to get you thinking about it. Even if your spouse has an income as well, chances are that it won’t be enough to cover your child’s expenses. These days, the average in state tuition is almost $8,000. And if, by chance, your little guy grows up to be a scholar, Harvard and Yale are much, much more expensive.
We know, your little guy is probably going to get a football scholarship anyway. You can already see that killer instinct in his eyes when he screams and reaches for that rattle. But on the off chance that he might need a little help paying for college, you might want to consider putting aside some savings for him and investing in term life insurance, just in case the unthinkable happens.
And while you’re at it, consider taking out some life insurance on your baby. We know, no one wants to think about their baby dying, but in the unlikely event it happens, you definitely don’t want to worry about where the money for final expenses is coming from. Besides, buying life insurance on him now guarantees that he’ll be able to get life insurance himself later, even if he has health issues.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Not all Bacteria is Bad

In today's world, it's all about making sure we are clean and take every precaution to ensure our health.  Have you ever thought that the "germs" could help?  What if I told you germs help fight against cancer?  Or could help oppose bad breath, or are the reason allergies are more common today than ever.  Take a look at this article and don't discount bacteria.