Archive for August 2010

Top 5 Things People LACK In Their Financial Plan

As I have traveled the country speaking and teaching about personal finances, I am continually reminded that this crusade has A LOT of work to do!   Many people just do not have a clue about how to win with their money.   It was not taught to them in school (and they may not have paid attention even if it were), they have not taken any classes since, and time is so limited that the last thing they want to do is to use the one spare moment they do have to read about money.   BUT if one does not take control, money will usually always be a problem and a source of endless frustration.   It can even cause lasting injuries to relationships.

With that said, I want to share what I believe are the Top 5 Things People LACK In Their Financial Plan:

  1. Monthly Written Spending Plan The old adage is true: “Fail to plan. Plan to fail!”
  2. A “Get Out Of Debt!” Plan Debt robs us of our ability to go do EXACTLY what we have been put on earth to do!
  3. A Written Will Statistics show that nearly sixty percent of people do not have a written will!   If you do not prepare a legal will, the government will decide who gets what.
  4. Life Insurance Again, statistics show that a majority of people who have dependents relying upon their income to sustain their lifestyle do not have adequate life insurance.   Term life insurance is just too cheap for this to happen!
  5. Health Insurance We know that it is EXPENSIVE, but it is way more expensive to not have it!

I hope that these help you take your finances to the next level!   Would you add anything to my list?

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Top 5 Ways To Save Money

From time to time, my family revisits ways that we can save money.   Invariably, we find a way to save a lot.   Recently, we completely cut off cable to eliminate that bill.   I haven’t missed it yet.   I might start missing it when college football starts up, but I certainly don’t miss the cable bill!

Our team has put together a list of the Top 5 Ways To Save Money – Without Selling Anything! This list has certainly impacted our money in a huge way.   Hopefully, this list will help you save a ton of money too!

  1. Auto/Home Insurance The average person saves $500 – $600 per year just by obtaining new quotes!
  2. Life Insurance Chances are high that you are overpaying!   Find out more and obtain instant quotes (without talking to anyone!).
  3. Zero-Percent Balance Transfer Credit Cards Move your high interest debt to zero percent interest debt!
  4. On-Line Savings Accounts On-line banks pay five to eight times the interest that most local banks pay.
  5. Groceries Cash envelopes and coupons really work!

In fact, I would LOVE to hear how much money you save by doing these five things!

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SERIES: Health Insurance – Part Five – The COST Of Not Carrying Insurance

Over the past 21 months, my family has participated in a wild ride with health insurance.   The experience has been enlightening, incredibly frustrating, annoying, confusing and intimidating.   Can I get an Amen! and a witness?!?!   In this series on health insurance, I am going to share my experience AND some helpful tips on saving money on health insurance.

Part Five The COST of not carrying health insurance

This series started out with me sharing my story of dropping maternity insurance coverage only to discover 16 days later that our baby boy was already on the way.   I got the joy of paying about $7,500 extra.

There are several COSTS to not carrying health insurance, some are obvious – others not so much:

  • Monetary penalty This is obvious, of course.   I only had to pay $7,500 extra for my debacle.       I say “only” because I have seen SO MUCH WORSE!   A heart attack costs many multiples of what I had to pay.   Accidents do happen.   My twin brother is an ER doc – and every single day he sees people that are experiencing a life-altering health care crisis.   With a 100% mortality rate, I would say the chances of you or a family member experiencing a large health-care bill in the next ten years is very high.
  • Emotional Stress I meet with people in 1-on-1 financial coaching session all of the time.   One of most common causes of unbelievable stress is unpaid medical bills that were incurred without insurance coverage.   In some cases, the stress has become so great that people begin to lose hope and despair of ever winning with their finances – and it ALL could have been avoided if they had just carried health insurance.
  • Avoid necessary care/Delay visits to doctor When a person does not carry insurance (or do not have money to cover their deductible), they will avoid going to the doctor or emergency room.   Now, in some cases, this is a good thing.   The financial penalty has reduced the number of people going to the doctor for a hangnail.   But in many other cases, people have avoided a doctor’s care for necessary and sometimes urgent care.

What are some other costs you can think of that are a result of NOT carrying health insurance?

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Sneaky and Fast Financial Emergencies

My family spent a week at Table Rock Lake in Missouri this summer swimming, skiing, wakeboarding, kneeboarding, tubing, boating and fishing.   It was an incredible week.   Except for the broken toe I sustained while doing a good deed and the faceplant I performed while wakeboarding.

The faceplant reminded me a lot of some financial emergencies my family has sustained.

  • It happened so fast I did not see it coming
  • It HURT – at first I could not even register the pain, then I felt more pain than I ever wanted to
  • It happened even though I did not want it to
  • It was visible to everyone that I was on the edge of a mess, but I was not able to hear them for the noise

In fact, they had the camera rolling as I crashed.   You can check it out by clicking the 43-second YouTube video below or by clicking HERE.

You can hear how much sympathy I received at the end of the video when you hear the laughter.   Ever noticed that some people have no sympathy for your financial mess?

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SERIES: Health Insurance – Part Four – Ways To Save

Over the past 21 months, my family has participated in a wild ride with health insurance.   The experience has been enlightening, incredibly frustrating, annoying, confusing and intimidating.   Can I get an Amen! and a witness?!?!   In this series on health insurance, I am going to share my experience AND some helpful tips on saving money on health insurance.

Part Four Ways to save on health insurance

I need health insurance, but I don’t want to have to take out a small business loan to pay for it!   Here are some key ways that I have saved on my health insurance.

Increase the deductible By increasing the deductible, I have assumed more personal risk and decreased the risk being carried by the insurance provider.   This means that they can offer a much lower premium to me.   In chapter 12 of my book, I Was Broke. Now I’m Not., I share how I compare insurance policies using the premiums and deductibles to see which one is the best financial decision.

Live a healthy lifestyle In a large group health insurance plan, you are automatically admitted to the insurance plan.   In an individual plan, you will be accepted/charged according to your personal health history.   We can’t control all of our health, but by controlling what we can, we can have a healthier life and better rated insurance premiums.

Go to work for an employer with group health insurance coverage If you can not obtain coverage or you have health history that is hurting your ability to obtain affordable insurance, obtain a job that offers group health insurance that does not have a clause that excludes your pre-existing c0nditions.

Don’t work, be a complete slob, and live life on the government dole Be broke.   Don’t be productive.   Save nothing.   Go to the hospital and rack up HUGE charges and let all of us tax-paying, law-abiding, hard-working citizens pay it for you.

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