Thursday, March 25, 2010

Shopping for Cheap Auto Insurance Online

The recent downturn in the economy has more people than ever before looking for ways to save money. One of the more common ways that people try to save money on their monthly bills is by finding cheap auto insurance, but the big question is whether or not you are really gaining anything buying low priced car insurance or will it end up costing you far more than you are saving if you should get into an accident. If you take your time and do your research, you may find that it pays to save on your insurance.

So the next logical question is "How do you go about finding cheap auto insurance?" There are several ways you can go about finding the best rate on your next auto insurance policy. You can of course go to each of the insurance agencies in your local area and talk to them. They will each give you their best rate on the coverage you need. This has been the way we have been buying insurance for decades and still works quite well for those that have the time.

The big drawback to shopping for cheaper rates this way is that it does take an inordinate amount of time. If you have nothing better to do with your time you can definitely find budget priced insurance. At least this used to be the way it worked, however thanks to modern technology and the Internet you can now shop online for low priced auto insurance from the comfort of your own home or while you are at work from your office computer.

At one time the only people looking the cheapest insurance were those who could not, for one reason or another, get insurance at an affordable rate from one of the big insurance companies. With the recent downturn in the economy, almost everyone is looking for ways to cut down on their bills. Finding a way to cut down on their monthly car insurance bill can go a long way to making sure that there is money left over to put food on the table.

By using the Internet you will be able to look at a wide variety of different insurance companies and see which ones can offer you cheap auto insurance that while inexpensive is still going to give you the coverage you need. Most of the online sites for these companies can give you instant quotes for the insurance you need. If you happen to find one that fits your needs, you will be able to buy your policy online and be insured by the time you leave the site.

If you have spent time looking online for cheap rates and have not been able to find the coverage you need for the price you can afford to pay, then you need to check out comparison websites. Rather than shopping directly and getting quotes individually, get them all in one place.

Here is a valuable government guide which shares 9 ways to lower insuring costs:

Friday, March 19, 2010

Hard Money Loan – Borrowing Made Easy

When you require funds in urgency and cannot wait for weeks to search for lenders for traditional loans, your best option is to go for a Hard Money Loan. There are tons of loans available in the market today for real – estate investors, but one common type of loan is hard money loan. Such loan allows investors to buy and fix investment property and if used correctly it can be definitely put money in your pockets.

A hard money loan is a specific type of borrowing in which a borrower receives loans based on the value of a specific commercial real estate. The lender approves the loan based on the equity in the assets. The ease for getting such loans has made the interest rates go higher than other categories of loans. Unlike traditional money lenders in hard money loan, the lenders do not spend amount and time in verifying the borrowers’ credentials like his income, tax history or credit history. The lenders borrow the amount totally based on the value of the real assets. Hard money loan is funded very quickly and you do not have to wait for weeks. There is considerable flexibility in the loan terms which can vary from 6 months – 20 years.

Hard money lenders restrict their lending to not more than 70 percent of their assessed value of a real estate property. This shows the rest of 30 percent is your goes to your down payment or equity. There are many high costs involved in hard money loan which makes the loan very expensive. The lenders always look for a strong return on their investment and charge you rate of interest in between 10 – 18 percent. There is also another major disadvantage as your loan will not be reported to the credit bureaus. This means that even if you pay your loan in a timely manner, it will not improve your credit report in any sense. There is also the facility of foreclosing properties with delinquent payments through hard money lending. These types of issues are generally avoided by traditional banks.

Thus hard money loan gives you the benefit of a large amount of funding without considering your financial income or credit history. You just have to have a real estate property and have enough of equity assets to fill out the application for such a loan. If you solely think that you can get a benefit from hard money lending, then do your research and know your lender well before signing on any documents for the loan.

Friday, March 12, 2010


According to Reuters News, the United States boosted it's investigation of taxes last year by 10 percent. Tax authorities also boosted their investigation of other financial crimes (again, by 10 percent).

The Internal Revenue Service is trying to pursue wealthy tax cheats. They reported a 13 percent rise in the number of reviews of what is known as 'legal source' crimes. A 'legal source' crime is a legitimate business by which the income hidden in some way.

Their convictions are also up slightly.They say there was also a 13 percent jump in 'illegal-source' financial crimes. These are crimes from gambling or gun-running. For some inexplicable reason, there was a reduction in their pursuit of narcotics-related crime.

Last year, the IRS had a voluntary amnesty program to encourage tax cheats to come forward without fear of jail time. Last year about 15,000 taxpayers decided to take advantage of the amnesty program.

A Tax Amnesty program provides comprehensive tax relief. Typically an amnesty program has a very short window of opportunity. The goal is to collect as much back taxes as possible in a very short period of time, usually two or three months. The IRS waived penalties if you filed returns and paid your taxes during the amnesty period.

The bad news for tax cheats is that authorities are culling this information to potentially go after other individuals and other financial institutions that may have been helping Americans evade taxes.

I interpret this to mean that the IRS will look at how much money specific businesses make. If a business, partnership or corporation makes over or under the newly created guidelines -- then, that business will be scrutinized very carefully.

Everyone would like to spend less on taxes. Fortunately, the tax laws make it easy. You can reduce your taxable income through various deductions, or reduce your tax liability through various credits.

Here's some suggestions for uncovering the tax breaks that are right for you:

1.Tax Basics -- First of all, we have to pay our taxes. So, plan in advance on what to do. I file my taxes online using "TAX ACT". Any do-it-yourself software program will work for you (either online or just on your computer). If you're not brave enough to do it yourself -- there are many tax preparers out there willing to file for you. There are lots of free places to get your taxes done as well. I know that there's help for Senior citizens, for sure.

2.Filing Status -- Determine your filing status. Filing status determines which tax rates and which standard deduction amounts apply to a specific tax return. If you've gotten married or had a child (including adoption) in the past year, don't forget to include spouse or child.

Seriously, after we had our first child, my ex-husband forgot to add our son as a dependent!! I had even named the boy after him and all. It can happen. Also remember to change your filing status if you've recently gotten divorced (me!). Persons that are not married but are raising the children on their own are considered to be a "Head of Household". They would need to pay less taxes.

3.Investments -- Taxpayers who invest in stocks, bonds, mutual funds, or real estate can benefit from lower tax rates on long-term gains. If a person were to shift their investments from short-term gains to long-term gains, you could lower your taxes quite a bit. Homeowners have many tax advantages available to them. Oftentimes, annuities are not taxable. Be sure and get some good tax advice before you invest.

4.Some Tax Breaks -- When an investment is valuable and cost a chunk of money, it also comes with a tax savings. The following are some expenditures that may also come with a tax benefit: Capital Gains, Capital Losses, with short and long-term holding periods, Capital Assets, and the sale of your home.

I'm not a tax accountant. Taxes are confusing to everyone (even tax accountants). Be sure and do your research. Most people already know most of what I've gone over here. But, if you don't -- study up. And, remember,the government is finding more ways all the time to catch tax cheaters. So -- Please!! Do NOT cheat on your taxes.

Guest Author:Meghan Furst an insurance agent.I have a blog @ htttp:// Please stop by,read my articles and COMMENT.Or ask questions.I Love questions and will personally answer them.

Thursday, March 4, 2010


We need life insurance to plan for the future. Life insurance protects our loved ones to help replace our income. If you die prematurely, life insurance will provide tax-free cash flow to your loved ones. This income can be used to pay for final medical bills, legal, funeral and other costs

Unless we are extremely wealthy, life insurance is what we use to anchor the foundation of financial security for our families. It could protect our financial resources. We never really know what will happen tomorrow. It should help our families plan for the uncertainties of life. It will give our family a chance to plan for the future. If the father (or mother) and breadwinner dies, he (or she) can leave money so that his family doesn't have to work for a few years and can adjust to life without him.

My sister's husband passed away a few years ago. He was only in his early fifties. He left her with three children to raise on her own. She had been working full-time but, then quit her job to deal with the problems caused by the untimely death of her husband. Her children needed her to stay at home because, although they were "good children and students" before her husband passed --They quickly became problem children and students. One of her boys temporarily got kicked out of school for pushing his fellow students. He needed psychological guidance from a professional for several years to deal with his Daddy's death. She was able to get him back in a regular school, after a bit of counseling.

The large lump sum of money she received allowed her to purchase their home and their autos without having to work for several years. Of course, the money didn't replace her husband. But, the money helped her get by. She now has recovered (if one can EVER recover) from the loss of her husband and is back at work full-time again. Her kids have graduated from high school and she has just one left in college now. She wouldn't have been able to accomplish this without the $250,000 (or so) from her husband's life insurance policy.

Now, I realize that I sounded old fashioned when I spoke about the "husband and breadwinner". I am a single woman, myself. I fully realize that today, woman hold major roles in society and oftentimes are the breadwinner for their families.


Some financial adviser's argue that whole-life policies are NOT superior to term life policies because one can invest in IRAs, 401(k)s, and other tax-advantaged savings vehicles that have tiny commissions, much higher yields and complete portability. I disagree entirely. Most people do not possess the financial acumen to safely invest in those types of resources. And yes, people can hire a professional to handle their IRA'S, 401K'S and etc. But, then where is the savings?

And then, the CHAOS of what's happened in the past two years is enough to scare the be jabbers out of your average person wanting to invest. I know of many professionals that have lost so much money in the stock market that they are now unable to retire and have to either postpone their retirement or even head back to work after already retiring!!! Not a pretty picture when all you really have to do is plop the money down and purchase life insurance. It is GUARANTEED TO BE THERE.

Guest Author

Meghan Furst is an insurance agent. I have a blog @ htttp:// Please stop by, read my articles and COMMENT. Or ask questions. I Loove questions and will personally answer them.