Life’s Challenges and Rewards

Life’s Challenges and Rewards

One of the amazing things about this journey called life is just how often things work out. Not always, of course, but often enough to bring a much-needed smile, a laugh, or to keep us moving forward.

Let’s take relationships, for example. Just when we think we may never find that special person or are hurting from a breakup, someone may appear out of seemingly nowhere. Not always, of course, but enough to keep us interested and in the game.

When we have babies, the worry is constant. How are they progressing? Are we providing a great environment? Are they learning enough at the right pace?

Then there’s that first day of school; fighting back the tears until they are out of sight.

Then an amazing thing happens. They are alright and you are fine. In fact, you may find you can get more things done and may even have a few minutes for yourself.

But as your child reaches their teenage years, there can be a rocky road for a bit. You begin to worry about them becoming old enough to drive. But then another interesting thing happens. When they get their driver’s license, they can take themselves to practice and shopping. They can even run errands for you. You may never stop worrying, but you realize this just may work out.

Of course, when they go to college, it all starts again. Will they be alright? Will they find good people to hang out with? Will they make good choices? Then it happens again. They are off, hopefully, making you proud, and you have your house back. It just may bring another smile.

The story repeats itself in many ways. Some of the things we worry most about never happen. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be prepared, however.

That’s a big reason to have adequate life insurance…to be prepared. No, it can’t prevent bad things from happening, but it can help reduce stress and worry. It can help ensure things work out.

If you would like to discuss how life insurance can add to the quality of your life, contact one of our independent life insurance agents. It is more affordable to get than many realize, and it is easy to get started. We look forward to assisting you.

How Many People…

How Many People…

Some random statistics about the number of people who can do something or fit somewhere at any given time. Have you ever wondered how many people…

Attend DisneyWorld on a given day?

Attendance is a pretty closely guarded secret at DisneyWorld in Orlando, but estimates place the average combined attendance of their parks (Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Animal Kingdom, etc.) at about 320,000 daily.

Can Be at the top of the Gateway Arch in St. Louis at any given time?

Yes, you can take a tram to the top of the Gateway Arch if you don’t fear heights or closed-in spaces. About 160 people at a time can take in the stunning view from about 600 feet above the Mississippi River. Sixteen windows accommodate the views.

Watched the Beatles first appearance on the Ed Sullivan Show?

A staggering 73 million people watched the Beatles make their first appearance on American soil on the Ed Sullivan Show. That translates to about 45% of the total televisions in use at the time. To put that in perspective, just over 19 million people saw the finale of Game of Thrones.

Can fit on the world’s largest cruise ship?

Symphony of the Seas is the world’s largest cruise ship with a capacity for 6,780 passengers. The ship is an astounding 20 stories tall.

Are millionaires in the United States?

It is estimated that there are 28 million millionaires in the U.S.

Have peanut related allergies in America?

Peanut and peanut-related allergies affect about 1.1% of the population. While that may not seem like much, it still translates to over 3 million individuals.

Have walked on the moon?

Along with Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin, a total of 12 human beings have set foot on the surface of the moon.

Are born and die each day?

Worldwide, about 385,000 people are born each day. In comparison, there are about an average of 175,000 deaths each day across the globe.

You may not realize that less than half of Americans have life insurance. This can add stress and challenges for a family already going through difficult times. Life insurance can be affordable and easy to obtain. Getting started can be as easy as contacting one of our independent life insurance agents. Get your no-obligation price quote today.

The Biggest Factors Impacting Life Expectancy

The Biggest Factors Impacting Life Expectancy

Some people believe they have little impact on how long they will live. Some believe how long they will live is predestined. Most experts, however, believe it is a combination of factors.

Accidents aside, most agree a person’s lifespan is determined by two broad categories; genetics and lifestyle choices.

Genetics

Genetics are basically the factors that you are born with and inherited from your parents. Genetics can influence everything from eye and hair color to the likelihood of you suffering from one of the three types of genetic diseases. Gender is influenced by genetics, and that too has an impact on lifespan. While genetics is a critical factor in how long you live, you have no influence on your genetics.

Lifestyle Choices

The area where you have the biggest impact on your lifespan is in your lifestyle choices. Lifestyle choices are the conscious decisions we make in our lives that may influence our health and well-being. Lifestyle choices include your decision to smoke or use tobacco or to drink alcohol. You can choose to eat a poor diet and not exercise. Lifestyle choices may even include risky behaviors like mountain climbing, sky diving, or driving a race car.

You can definitely affect the likelihood of expanding your lifespan with better lifestyle choices.

The bottom line is that while you may not be able to influence your genetics, you have a lot to say about your lifestyle choices. Choose wisely.

You should also choose wisely when it comes to life insurance. The type of life insurance you choose and where you decide to get it from can greatly impact your coverage and what you pay for it. Premiums will also be affected by your age and health. When you contact one of our independent insurance agents, they will search  a network of companies seeking the best value for your situation. Along with valuable protection, you’ll be getting precious peace of mind. Getting started is as easy as reaching out to us. We look forward to assisting you.

What People Fib About on Life Insurance Applications

What People Fib About on Life Insurance Applications

Whether it is called fibbing, misrepresenting the truth, or simply lying, not telling the truth on a life insurance application can have serious consequences. It could even lead to a claim being denied.

It is critical that a life insurance application be filled out accurately and truthfully, yet people still feel compelled to fib. What are they likely to be untruthful about? Here are some examples.

Tobacco Use

Smoking and the use of tobacco products are a red flag when it comes to life insurance, so applicants may be prone to stretch the truth.

Family Health History

It can be important to disclose the truth about your family’s history with cancer and diabetes in particular. These are genetic factors that can impact your lifespan and your life insurance premiums. Not disclosing the truth could void life insurance protection.

Legal and Illegal Drug Use

No one is proud of illegal drug use, but if it is a problem that results in some form of treatment, that can be something that can be traced or tracked.

Alcohol Use

Many life insurance applicants will minimize how much they use or abuse alcohol. Try to play it straight on your application.

Height and Weight

Like with your driver’s license, it is likely you may make yourself look a little bit more fit on your life insurance application. Don’t use your imagination too much.

You can anticipate that if something on your application looks awry, your application may be subject to review. If the misinformation on an application is the cause for a claim to be denied, the premiums paid over the life of the policy will be returned.

The best tactic is to be honest on your life insurance application. It could avoid some serious issues in the future.

If you are pricing life insurance policies, we can help. Our independent agents can search a network of companies to provide your best value, even if your application is not perfect. Contact us today.

What Is a Life Worth?

What Is a Life Worth?

When we judge what a human life is worth, it can often be based on what we read or see in the news. It seems there is almost always a story in the news about a family receiving millions of dollars in a wrongful death suit. It may be from malpractice, an auto accident, construction accident, building collapse, or one of many other causes. One party is found liable for the death and the court issues a judgement that could be in the millions of dollars. Is this indicative of what a human life is worth?

In such cases, the court will take into account many variables. How old was the victim, and what was the potential lifetime earning power? How egregious was the situation? What was the impact on the family? Were punitive damages included?

The case could be made that a human life is worth millions of dollars or is even priceless.

Then there’s the facts about life insurance.

Did you know, for example, that about half of Americans don’t have life insurance? Are you aware that experts estimate the average life insurance payout to be less than $50,000? Furthermore, did you know the average person only spends about $26 on life insurance premiums?

This may not sound like we view human life as priceless.

To be fair, there is a cost to life insurance. To get an appropriate amount of life insurance, there may have to be a shift in priorities. We may have to take a larger view of our lives, our families, and how we want to financially protect them in the future.

Finally, consider this: If you earn $60,000 annually and work 25 more years, your income would be $1.5 million.

We encourage you to contact us to discuss your life insurance situation. We will be pleased to provide a free, no-obligation quote. You may be surprised at how affordable a significant amount of life insurance can be.

Why Car Insurance Company Rates Differ

Why Car Insurance Company Rates Differ

While some believe that all car insurance company rates are the same or similar, that is simply not the case. Rates can vary widely from company to company. That is why working with an independent car insurance company can be so valuable. We can compare with a network of companies rather than being captive to a single brand. But why do rates vary from company to company? Why is it worth comparing and seeking out the best value? Here are just some of the reasons why auto insurance rates can differ from company to company.

Different Claims Experiences

Some companies suffer more claims or higher claims than others. This will usually be reflected in their rates. It is one of the reasons companies find safe drivers more attractive.

Companies May Specialize in Certain Categories

There are auto insurance companies who have more experience with classic or vintage cars, drivers with spotty driving records, and those with high-performance cars. An independent insurance agent can help direct you to a company that specializes in your situation.

Different Profit Priorities

Companies each have different profit and loss experiences, which will impact rates.

Some Companies Spend Extensively on Advertising and Marketing

There are multiple car insurance companies that spend extensively on advertising their companies. Some would say advertising helps them sell more and keep costs low; others suggest advertising costs are passed down to the consumer.

Who They Insure

Some companies are more selective about who they insure and the parameters for insuring clients. This can minimize losses and keep rates lower.

Not all car insurance companies are the same, nor are their rates. While rates aren’t the only factor you should consider when choosing your auto insurance company, it certainly is a significant factor.

The point is, car insurance rates can and do differ from company to company. The way to find your best value is to compare, and our independent insurance agents can help you do just that. Contact us today and see the difference we can make.

Why Stay-at-Home Parents Need Significant Life Insurance-services

Why Stay-at-Home Parents Need Significant Life Insurance-services

Traditionally, most life insurance policies have been purchased on what is referred to as the family’s “breadwinner.” This is the person charged with earning the largest portion of a family’s income. But as times have changed, many are recognizing the value of a stay-at-home parent. Today, this is a significant part of modern families. Almost one in five (18%) of parents do not work outside the home.

These parents who don’t work outside the home contribute significantly to the family, providing value in ways that may not be appreciated until they are no longer available. Here is a look at how that value adds up.

Childcare

Childcare is a significant portion of a young family’s budget. Stay-at-home parents absorb these costs and may even provide the additional benefit of home schooling. This can potentially save on private schooling and tutoring. Childcare is far from babysitting.

Cleaning and Maintenance

Many of the parents who stay home find themselves in the position of not only cleaning the home but also keeping it well maintained. These far-ranging duties can include laundry, cleaning, and even yard work.

Errands

Simple daily errands can be extremely time-consuming and costly to outsource. There is the shopping, picking up dry cleaning, being a taxi driver for children, oil changes, car washes, and an endless stream of other tasks.

Accounting/Bookkeeping

Frequently, the stay-at-home parents take on the duties of managing the family finances. This includes banking, organizing and paying bills, and tracking budgets and savings. Stay-at-home parents may also be responsible for making sure the family is getting the best value when it comes to cable and cellular bills.

How would the loss of a stay-at-home parent impact your family? With all things considered, it may be more significant than you realize.

We invite you to connect with one of our independent life insurance agents to discuss your situation. Term insurance is affordable and may be the way to secure the coverage you need. We look forward to assisting you.

Life’s Life Insurance Reminders

Life’s Life Insurance Reminders

Life has a way of nudging us in the right direction and of reminding us when to do it. It happens with life insurance. We know we should carry it, but even in America, nearly half of us (48%) don’t. Here are some of life’s reminders about life insurance.

The Birth of a Child

Many grandparents will gift a new grandchild a gift of a small whole life insurance policy that can build in value through the years. This can take a little burden from the parents while starting a little nest egg for the child’s future.

Marriage

Marriages combine assets and incomes and can add responsibilities. Getting married is an excellent time to start a life insurance plan that can grow as your family and responsibilities grow. New spouses should check in with each other’s current coverage as a starting point.

The Purchase of a Home

A home is the largest purchase many people make and can be their largest asset. Life insurance can ensure any mortgage is covered upon death and that your family can remain in that home.

Starting a Business

Starting a business can be a game changer. It can involve complicated partnerships, significant investments of time and money, and, of course, risks. The death of a key partner can send a business into a spiral. Life insurance can help guard against that.

The Death of a Family Member or Friend

One of the more sobering reminders of the need for life insurance is the death of someone you may be close to. Seeing what the family goes through can be a stunning reminder. Life insurance may not take away the pain or the tears, but it can help relieve stress and the financial burden of a loss.

Are you ready to consider life insurance? We can help. Our independent life insurance agents can shop for life insurance protection to suit your situation and budget. Contact us today, answer a few simple questions, and get started. We look forward to assisting you.

What Do You Do With Your Spare Time?

What Do You Do With Your Spare Time?

Alright, we understand what you are thinking. WHAT spare time? Between streaming, watching Tik-Tok videos and social media, who has spare time? The point is, we all have spare time; it is just a matter of what we have, or we will decide to do with it. For some, it will be going down some wormhole of a topic on YouTube or Google. Others may be involved in video or online games. The question remains. What are you doing with your spare time? Here are some options to consider to expand your horizons.

Go Bowling

If you don’t get the irony of bowling and “spare” time, all the more reason to head to your local lanes. It may not be climate change, but it is kind of sad to think there will be a generation who never picks up a bowling ball.

Go to the Library

Yes, they still exist and probably offer more resources than you can imagine. Library cards are still free, and some libraries offer high-tech access to audio and video recording studios and more. Plus, you can still find some terrific books there.

Meditate

You can call it checking out or shutting down, but taking 30 minutes or an hour in a quiet place by yourself with no agenda can be rejuvenating. Your brain needs draining once in a while, and meditation is an exceptional use of spare time.

Wash and Wax Your Car

Yes, there are people you can pay to do this. But washing your car gives you some exercise and keeps you connected with the small dings and dents you may not have previously noticed. If you’ve never waxed a car, you are in for a treat. Give yourself an hour or so and watch that baby sparkle. It should almost be illegal.

Save Yourself Some Money

Using spare time to save money is one of life’s great win-win situations, especially when it comes to auto insurance. You may be paying too much and not even know it. By reaching out to one of our independent car insurance agents, they can help you determine if you are getting the coverage you deserve for the price you are paying. It only takes a few minutes and you could end up saving money for years. Give us a call to get started saving money today. It may even be better than bowling.

Five Tiny Things You Can Do Daily to Make Life Better

Five Tiny Things You Can Do Daily to Make Life Better

Making positive changes in your life can be so daunting that you may decide to do nothing. Losing 40 pounds, running five miles, and saving a large portion of your pay may seem impossible. The result is often procrastination. What, however, if tasks were simple and easy to achieve? They can be, if done intentionally and consistently. Here are five teeny, tiny daily steps you can try to make your life and the lives of those around you just a bit better.

Be Grateful

It is amazing how being grateful can reduce stress and help your attitude. If you find yourself being negative or feel stress building, be grateful for the good things in your life.

Move More

If losing forty or fifty pounds seems insurmountable, just make a commitment to move more each day. Get up from that chair more often. Park further from the front door of the grocery store. Take a walk. You don’t have to do jumping jacks or pushups. Just. Move. More.

Thank or Compliment Someone

Be intentional and sincere. A thoughtful compliment can make someone’s day while adding to your own.

Create an Easy Task List

Sure, there are a lot of things to do, but there are likely things you’ve been putting off for weeks, or maybe months. Create a list of these simple tasks and just make a commitment to accomplish one each day. Gotta get a haircut? Want to cancel that streaming service? Should you call your brother? Put it down and get it done.

Do a Less/More Swap

Maybe you should watch streaming less and listen to your favorite music more. Perhaps you should eat less fast food and cook more. You could be less negative and take a more positive approach. This is a double-barrel approach to improving your daily life, because you are not just limiting poor behavior, you are replacing it with life-enhancing behavior.

What can you do in your life to make it just a bit better for you and those you love? Perhaps taking a closer look at life insurance is an option. It is easier and also more affordable than you may think. Connect with one of our independent life insurance agents to get started. You get peace of mind and your family gets a bit more comforting security.