Archive for December, 2010
Most of us have to buy a car in order to get to work. Face it, public transportation just isn’t available in most places. So the question is, how do you maintain that vehicle with the least amount of expense. That is where the Carchex extended auto warranty comes in. It doesn’t pay for normal maintenance such as oil changes, but it does cover most major repairs depending on the policy you purchase. What you can expect out of an extended auto warranty is:
- peace of mind that your vehicle will be in good mechanical condition
- predictable maintenance costs for your vehicle since the extended auto warranty will cover those unexpected repair costs
- better resale value of your vehicle since extended auto warranties can be transferable
With the Carchex extended auto warranty in particular, you can expect one of the lower premiums around since they can tailor the policy to your needs and shop around for the best value for you. What I like about this policy is that you can choose the repair location. So if you already have a favorite mechanic, you can still take your car there. No need to drive out of your way to locate the place an insurance company expects you to take your vehicle to.
Paying the repair bill is also consumer friendly. You pay your deductible but the company pays the remainder directly to the repair place, so you do not have to come up with the money out of your pocket. I am sure many of us have found ourselves waiting for reimbursement checks from insurance companies before. If your car needed a sudden unexpected repair, it probably was not in your budget, so this is a great feature of the Carchex extended auto warranty. At least I prefer using my money for what I budgeted for, not emergencies.
Most of the plans you can choose from also provide 24 hour roadside assistance and extended towing benefits. This may not be as important to people living in large cities, but those that travel extensively through the large expanses of the Western states will appreciate some help with the towing if the car happens to break down in a fairly uninhabited place.
You are likely wondering what this company’s track record is like. When checking for reviews online, I found the typical complaints such as, the salesperson promised some feature which wasn’t provided, or the company did not fully pay for the repair. The number of complaints I found was surprisingly low, so if this is a product which fits your need, check into it.
One word of caution is that Carchex extended auto warranty does provide extended auto warranties which are underwritten by other insurance companies. You will want to read any contracts you sign very carefully and check out the company you were referred to as well. You want a stable company with a good financial balance sheet, so if you have a claim, it will get paid. This company makes it easy to do business on the internet, but that does not relieve you of your responsibility as a consumer to check out what you are purchasing.
Make sure the policy you are looking at purchasing is truly what you want. The price has to be right, the services provided have to be right. Extended auto warranties only make sense if they save you money if something goes wrong with your vehicle. After all, if they didn’t, you might as well just pay for repairs when they happen. This one is definitely worth checking into.
Do you like to fly into exotic places? Do you snatch up a bargain when you see it? Perhaps you were one of those adventurous souls who were the first to return to Indonesia after the tsunami. If so, you probably already know how handy international travel insurance can be. Thousands of travelers found out the hard way about the difficulties resulting from trip delays when the volcano on Iceland interrupted air travel for weeks. You could have saved yourself some frustration if you had had global travel shield international travel insurance at the time.
Global Travel Shield is an American Express Travel Related Services Company. American Express has been in business for over 150 years. With a travel insurance policy through Global Travel Shield you have access to the customer support network of American Express. The volcanic eruption that shutdown air traffic over Europe for weeks is an extreme case and most international travel insurance is designed to cover the average problems that crop up, not the extreme cases. For example, the global travel shield international travel insurance will cover up to two nights in a hotel if your flight is delayed or canceled. In many instances the airline companies will take care of you if the delay is their fault but if you have chosen to travel on bargain airlines, this may not be the case.
However, global travel shield international travel insurance offers other kinds of travel insurance:
- Global Air Trip Protector
- Global Baggage Protection
- Global Trip Delay
- Trip Cancellation or Interruption
- Global Medical
You should seriously consider a Global Medical plan if you are traveling to a country where the medical services are not as developed as here or where the general living standard does not encourage hygiene. You should consider this a requirement if you are traveling off the beaten path. There is only so much prevention you can do. If you find yourself on a cruise ship and your body develops a serious health problem, you may need to be evacuated. There is a limit to services offered on a ship. Or imagine yourself enjoying the exotic sites of India when a spider bites you. Some of those creatures can bring forth powerful reactions.
As with any insurance policy you should read it carefully before you purchase it and know what proof you need to obtain to be reimbursed for travel related mishaps. It varies with each policy. When I travel, I keep the telephone number for the travel insurance company with me at all times. So far, I have been quite lucky in my travels but the occasional incident has occurred, allowing me to experience health services in different countries. I have not yet had to use global travel shield international travel insurance but I do have experience with other American Express Travel Related Services and I was quite pleased with their response.
Their customer service department provided me with exactly what I asked for and was easy to get a hold of. As far as pricing goes, you should check out a number of competitive products and choose the one that suits your needs. Travel is one of those activities many people develop an individual style for. So no one policy will fit every traveler. Know yourself. Consider what you are likely to do and what risky situations that could lead to. Those are the ones you want to protect yourself for. If you travel with carry-on luggage only, no matter where you go, baggage loss is not an insurance coverage you need.
AccuQuote provides the AccuQuote Free Life Insurance Quote based on the information you enter online. In the state of Illinois there is an AccuQuote company which is accredited by the Better Business Bureau with an A+ rating. This company has been a member of the BBB since 2003. Not all AccuQuote companies are accredited by the BBB. The one that is, has had very few complaints against it and those have been resolved.
If you enter your information online you may receive an AccuQuote Free Life Insurance Quote very quickly. The benefit of this service is that they check over 100 companies for life insurance quotes, so you can easily get an idea what the best rate available is. However, only about a dozen of those companies are the large well-known companies you are familiar with. You will want to research the insurance company they suggest yourself. Not all insurance companies are financially stable and for a life insurance policy, you want to make sure the company can pay out your policy if it becomes necessary.
As part of your AccuQuote Free Life Insurance Quote, you enter the amount of life insurance coverage you are interested in. Most Americans have about 4 times the coverage of their annual salary. However, you may find that this is not enough to cover the expenses that would occur should you die. This is especially true if you have young children who you expect to go to college some day. So you may want to bracket your inquiry by entering a minimum amount you think you should have and then checking for an amount you think it may truly take in order to provide your family with the security you would like them to have.
The beauty of automated systems is that they don’t care about having to do the work twice and you may find that the rates don’t scale linearly. In general, just about everyone needs life insurance at some point in their life. Whether you are a homemaker or a business man, your services would be expensive to replace. Even single people may find that they have financial obligations they don’t want their family to have to deal with without the funds to do it. This does not just mean the funeral expenses. This includes any businesses you may have, debt that is shared with someone else, or property that you may want them to be able to keep but has expensive maintenance.
It doesn’t cost anything to get a AccuQuote Free Life Insurance Quote, so why not find out how much it would cost you to protect your loved ones. You won’t be buying insurance online. That process still takes some medical check-ups which have to be done in person. At least to my knowledge blood samples cannot be sent over the internet yet. Who knows some day, such analytical tools may be available. For now you are stuck having at least a brief physical in order to obtain life insurance.
One of the major benefits of GEICO, the company, is that it belongs to Berkshire Hathaway. Berkshire Hathaway has a lot of cash flow due to Warren Buffet’s investment style. You will not have to worry about the financial strength of GEICO. GEICO has done an amazing job of creating brand awareness for their company. Who hasn’t heard of the gecko commercials? The gecko is always telling us how we can save money with GEICO Car Insurance.
Checking with the Better Business Bureau, the various GEICO companies have mostly been accredited by the Better Business Bureau and ratings vary from B+ to A+ to no rating yet. In fact, the worst GEICO company I found had a complaint filed with the Better Business Bureau at a rate of one per day, but even that company managed to survive. Most of the complaints with the company had to do with advertising and sales practices and were resolved by the company.
It is not hard to see how a company could get into trouble with advertising. GEICO Car Insurance regularly advertises with statements claiming to save money over other insurance companies. If you look at their website, you will currently find a claim of an average savings of $500. This claim is actually based on customer surveys, so if that one isn’t accurate, who is to blame? The company or the customers who didn’t report the correct numbers?
On the flip side, any company that can receive an A+ rating must be doing something right. If all I knew about GEICO was that it was owned by Berkshire Hathaway, I would consider it a great company to do business with. Warren Buffet believes in companies that are well managed. No service type company would be considered well managed if they didn’t take care of their customers. In the service industry not taking care of your customers is a fast track to bankruptcy.
So what coverage does GEICO offer? Basically, the full array:
- bodily injury liability
- property damage liability
- medical payments
- uninsured motorist
- comprehensive physical damage
- emergency road service
- rental reimbursement
- mechanical breakdown
The nice thing about GEICO is that it is an auto insurance company not a company that finds the cheapest insurance coverage for you from some other company. You deal with GEICO when you buy a policy from them and their customer satisfaction is very high. As with most websites, getting a quote from GEICO Car Insurance is very simple. You type in your information and you will be contacted with the quote.
Once you receive your quote, you should know if you can save money with this company. Have you ever considered, how average savings might be so high? There is an obvious reason. If you get a quote from GEICO and it is higher than your current insurance coverage, would you switch to GEICO? Obviously not. You have nothing to gain by switching, but if the savings were $500 per year, you would switch, wouldn’t you? So would everyone else. So when GEICO Car Insurance surveys their
customers, it isn’t unbelievable that they really did save that much. They are the ones that saved enough to be motivated to switch to GEICO.
With any luck, you too could save that much. Getting a quote online isn’t hard, so what are you waiting for? I recommend comparing your current coverage and premiums to what else is available at least every two years. Even though many people stick with the insurance their parents had, it may not be the best choice financially. If you make it a habit to check every two years, you make it a purely financial decision, not a family tradition.
These days financing a college education is quite daunting. Tuition is high and still going up, the economy is still in a slump and jobs are hard to come by. Yet, getting a college education is one of the best ways to insure your prospects for a good income in the future. So what can you do? You look for help in finding that financing. One company that can help you is Simple Tuition.
I recently tried out their service and I was impressed. I didn’t try the typical college student profile. I went for the new reality for many older adults who are finding that they need to get a graduate degree to keep their current jobs or reenter the job market. Simple Tuition found four loans I would qualify for with interest rates ranging from 2.87% to 3.84%. That is not bad at all. And it was fast. I received those search results within a minute.
Loans aren’t your only option though. At any age you still have several means of helping to finance your college education:
- grants and scholarships
The vast majority of scholarships are aimed at high school seniors just applying to college, but that doesn’t mean others do not exist. Scholarships are also available to current undergraduate students, graduate students and a wide range of adults with special circumstances. Keep applying. Grants and scholarships are free money. You do not have to repay them, so any amount you can get will reduce the amount you have to come up with. Some scholarships are based on financial need, but not all of them. If you find that your academic performance is at the upper range of students, your current college may even have scholarships you can apply for while already attending the college.
Generally, loans subsidized by the Federal Government have lower interest rates, so check into those first. You definitely need to fill out a FAFSA form. You can do this at www.fafsa.ed.gov. This is an activity you can expect to complete every year. It does require a lot of information but without it you will not even be considered for federal loans, work-study programs and many scholarships at colleges. Make sure you submit your FAFSA in time to qualify for all financial aid considerations at your college. Every college has their own deadline.
Once you have applied for FAFSA, it is time to look at private lenders. This is where a site like Simple Tuition can really help. They will present you with a range of loans that fit your situation and you can apply for the loans right from their site.
- employer reimbursement
Many of the larger companies still offer a tuition reimbursement benefit. This also varies from company to company. Some companies will only reimburse you for courses that are related to their business, others reimburse you for any course taken while seeking a degree. If you are currently employed, check into it.
The average college student ends up with $24,000 in student loan debt when they graduate. It is up to you to find the best financing options for you. Simple Tuition is a great way to get started. This company provides more financial information on their website. The service is free to their users. They make their money by receiving referral fees etc. from lenders when you decide to apply for one of the loans they suggest. Their search will provide you with information on loans from lenders they have an agreement with and others. They are clearly marked as such on the information you receive. In my test, I found no reason to not recommend this site.
One final tip, you do need to allow them to set a cookie in order to receive your loan recommendations.
This company provides free quotes from a range of insurance companies. So they make your task easier. They provide this service for auto insurance as well as about a dozen other types of insurance, a rather impressive list of insurance types compared to other companies. According to TopTenReviews they are in the top ten companies providing help in finding insurance. They rank them at number six to be exact.
When you look for auto insurance, you are asked to fill out an online form which seems to be comprehensive. They ask about all the little details that some insurance companies consider for giving you discounts on your insurance premiums, so the quotes you receive should truly reflect your situation. The form is very easy to fill out.
Here are a few things you should consider before using their services or the services of a similar company for that matter:
– Do they sell your information?
– How do they contact you?
Most online companies will contact you online, but that is not true of insurance agents. They can range from the traditional telephone contact to home visits to online communication. In the case of US Insurance Online they leave all options open. You will have to decide whether you can live with this. I know personally I hate telephone marketing. I have gotten to the point where I simply hang up as soon as I discover the person on the other end is trying to sell me something. That may be rude, but I work from home and being interrupted by a cold call is not conducive to productivity. You may feel differently. I know some people who make a game out of leading salespeople along with outlandish stories. If that is you, have fun.
If you decide that you are comfortable with their conditions, this company will make your hunt for insurance coverage easier. They will provide you with quotes from a number of different insurance companies, so you can make an informed decision based on what is available. Since they do a good job of collection relevant information from you, those quotes will be accurate too. There really isn’t much more you can expect from a free service. Go ahead and try US Insurance Online.
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