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~Alex Hastings~
Hastings Insurance Solutions LLC
~Guide One~

2435 Kimberly Road
Suite #100N
Bettendorf IA 52722
563-355-0262 Office
641-494-9494 Cell
855-355-0262 Fax
ExpertInsuranceSolutions@gmail.com
www.HastingsInsuranceSolutions.com
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Are You Making Any of These Top 10 Insurance Blunders?

When it comes to buying insurance, what you don't know can hurt you...and your family...for years to come. Learn how to identify the top ten insurance mistakes and what you can do about them with my free guide, "The Top 10 Insurance Blunders - and How to Avoid Them."

Just reply to this email and I'll send it right out to you.


Quick Quiz

Each month I'll give you a new question.

Just reply to this email for the answer.

What was invented in 1903, and patented in 1906 by G. C. Beilder?
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Recipe: Sticky Soy Glazed Turkey Legs

An exotic way to celebrate the holidays on a small scale

4 Serves
  • 4 turkey drumsticks
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 medium onion, sliced 1/4-inch thick
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup soy sauce

Directions

Preheat oven to 400° F. Season drumsticks with salt and pepper. Place onion slices on the bottom of a roasting pan and arrange turkey legs on top. Dot the turkey legs with butter and roast for about 20 minutes.

Mix together the sugar and soy sauce. Reduce oven temperature to 300° F and brush the turkey legs with the sauce. Continue to roast, while basting the legs every 10 minutes, until meat is cooked through - about 20 minutes. (Cooking time may vary depending on the size of the turkey drumsticks.)


Worth Quoting

This month, some famous quotes on the topic of nostalgia:

It is strange how we hold on to the pieces of the past while we wait for our futures.

Ally Condie


I'd trade all my tomorrows for one single yesterday.

Kris Kristofferson


It shocks me how I wish for...what is lost and cannot come back.

Sue Monk Kidd


I hate the good old days. What is important is that today is good.

Karl Lagerfeld


There is no "what should be," there is only what is.

Lenny Bruce


Nostalgia isn't what it used to be.

Peter De Vries

 


Updates from Alex:
~ June 2014 we will relocate the physical office location, TBD, New Address will remain Local. ( open to suggestions as to where e-mail me anytime)
~ Effective 1/1/14 and after,Wellmark BlueCross BlueShield, Link (Click Here) available to quote and enroll in new ACA plans in Iowa.


How to Prevent Grinch Visits Over the Holidays

Here's a warning as the holiday season approaches: Wrapped presents don't only excite kids - they tantalize burglars. And this comes with a big price tag; the average amount of property stolen in a home burglary is $2,119.

Here are some tips on preventing burglaries that are specially designed to prevent Grinch visits and on making claims:
-Be prepared:

  • Don't advertise your winter vacation on Facebook.
  • Risk is high before, during and after the holidays. Most burglaries occur when daytime routines return to normal.
  • Use classic "burglar prevention" techniques: light timers, holding subscriptions and mail, etc.
  • Recipients may not see the gifts you sneak in, but burglars might. Bring gifts home disguised and after dark.
  • Don't pile empty boxes on trash day. It's too obvious.
  • After a burglary, the chances of being burglarized again increase. Burglars know you'll replace stolen items.
Only 21 percent of stolen property is recovered. Insurance is the best way of compensating for a loss. When choosing coverage and making claims, remember:
  • Avoid actual cash value (ACV) coverage, which considers depreciation. ACV covers cost at time of loss, meaning you won't receive the full value of the item. Replacement cost coverage doesn't consider depreciation, so that if someone steals your TV set, with replacement cost coverage, you would receive a TV set of like value.
  • You usually need proof of ownership of stolen items. This could include receipts, videos, photos and model numbers.
  • Premiums increase after most claims, especially thefts. If policyholders become categorized as high risk form multiple claims, insurers can choose not to renew policies after theft or fire claims.
Like any Claim It's far better to prevent as best you can than pay the emotional and financial costs of being a theft victim.
Travel Apps Designed for Wherever Your Road Takes You

RoadWhether we're alone, or on a family vacation, traveling can present all sorts of challenges. Even the best-laid plans go awry, but thanks to our smartphones, we're always in a position to handle wherever the road takes us, providing, of course, our phones are equipped with the proper applications.

There are apps for everything today, and a plethora of them are focused on travel. Here are some free travel apps to download before you take off:

For the financial whiz
Mint (www.mint.com) holds all of your financial information - from account balances to transactions to investments. Whether you're in a cab, or in line at Disneyland, you'll be able to monitor your finances. Mint also allows you to transfer money within the app and is highly secure.

Oanda Currency Converter (www.oanda.com/currency/converter) can help you determine the value of any product in 190 currencies. This app certainly comes in handy, but makes it almost too easy to spend abroad.

For the practical needs
There never seems to be a bathroom around when you need it...or is there? The SitOrSquat app (www.sitorsquat.com) lists 95,000 bathrooms worldwide, so you can always find one close to you. It includes ratings, so you'll know whether to sit, squat or keep walking.

Of course, every app uses data, That means overage or roaming fees. Onavo (www.onavo.com) compresses your downloaded data usage, so that you use less and get more from it. Onavo backs up to a cloud-based technology and provides monthly usage reports.


Total Tech Hotels: The Future is Now

Computer EyeWalking into some hotels can feel like a trip to the future; high-tech hotels are popping up across the globe, offering guests some futuristic technological amenities. And they seem to keep them coming back.

They're called total-tech hotels or resorts, and their offerings go far beyond cable TV or iPod docking stations.

Imagine a mirror television where you can fix your hair and tune in to the news? Or robots that take your luggage? Or a room key that permits you to enter by scanning your iris? And then there's the in-room oxygen system that helps guests in a Colorado hotel acclimatize to altitude changes.

Even if you're not a techie, you can still enjoy visiting a total-tech hotel. They make it easy: Tech amenities are user-friendly and intuitive.


Technology Helps Drivers Save on Insurance Premiums

Historically, auto insurance was created to protect drivers' financial interests. Its basic principles remain the same, but now the auto insurance industry is using technology to help policyholders save money and drive safely. Here are a few of those innovations:

Use-based premiums
Devices placed in a policyholder's car allow insurers to track mileage and driving behavior, important factors used when calculating premiums. The devices monitor mileage and habits such as speeding, and how often and how hard brakes are applied. Since these programs were initiated, newer technology has resulted in improvements, such as the MyRate program, in which information is wirelessly transmitted over cellphone networks.

Simulations
One way to save money is to avoid accidents, but reactions to potential dangers vary. Driving simulators allow new drivers - especially teenagers - to practice their reactions in a safe environment. It also offers parents discounts on the premiums they pay for teenaged drivers.

Crash test dummies
Used during safety tests so scientists understand how different crash types impact the human body, crash test dummies now more closely resemble humans and include ribs that break and spines that curve like ours.

Apps
Key2SafeDriving is a smartphone app that installs a device in the vehicle and places phones into "safe driving mode" when the car is being driven. Other apps, such as SaferCar, provide vehicle safety ratings, and RepairPal locates mechanics and requests repair estimates.


Why so Many Women Now Need Life Insurance

Historically, life insurance has been considered a must-have for heads of household - the breadwinners who will need to provide for spouses and children on their deaths. In the past, that was usually the male partner; now, increasingly, the breadwinner is a woman.

Many Women are the Breadwinners
Women make up 51 percent of the population. The majority of college graduates are women, and more than half of the labor force is female. In fact, nearly 62.8 percent of women are wholly or partially their families' providers. Nearly two-thirds bring home at least 25 percent of their family's earnings.

With this economic trend comes the responsibility for ensuring the family's needs will be met in cases of unexpected death - and that's why it's so important for women to consider life insurance.

Covers Short and Long-Term Needs
Life insurance can provide a lump sum of money to replace income in the event of the death of the breadwinner. This sum can cover short-term expenses, such as the cost of a funeral and paying off incurred debts. It can support requirements such as housing, food and clothing for surviving family members. And it can provide for long-term expenses, such as college educations or retirement nest eggs.

Help With Household Tasks
Life insurance can also help with some of the household responsibilities, which, for the most part, are still handled by women. These responsibilities, which generally keep households running smoothly, include child or grandchild care, and household chores.

With adequate life insurance, families are able to find other means of getting help around the house, either in the short term or for the long term.

Life insurance, of course, can never replace the individual, but it can help pay for the vital services provided to spouses, children and grandchildren. It only makes sense to consider it. An advisor can help you determine the best options for you and your family.


Review Your Health Care Benefits Prior to Year-end
As the end of the year approaches, many of us are thinking about health insurance; for example, most employers open up enrollment to health care benefits. Newer employees can sign up, and other employees can change benefits.

Now's the perfect time to review options, reduce costs or add coverage. But many put off taking action because of the volume of paperwork and confusing terminology.

It's particularly important to be proactive this year, as the Affordable Care Act (ACA) will be mostly implemented in 2014. Here are three steps that may help simplify your review process:

Learn the language: There are many terms exclusive to health insurance that have different meanings in other contexts. Online searches are great, but only visit reputable websites.

Update: This is the time to make necessary alterations if you've experienced a major life change, including marriage, divorce, having children, relocating or the death of a spouse.

Even if nothing has changed, review your coverage. Employers may have increased deductibles, removed options or be offering new plans. If you aren't aware of any changes, ask.

Consider Health Savings Accounts (HSAs): Many employers offer HSAs. These are good options for young, healthy single employees, and also may be more attractive than Flexible Spending Accounts (FSAs) which have changed under the ACA. With an HSA, you contribute from your paycheck, pre-tax, to pay for health expenses such as co-pays and prescriptions. Unlike FSAs, money unspent in an HSA accumulates and earns interest.

This newsletter and any information contained herein are intended for general informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal, financial or medical advice. The publisher takes great efforts to ensure the accuracy of information contained in this newsletter. However, we will not be responsible at any time for any errors or omissions or any damages, howsoever caused, that result from its use. Seek competent professional advice and/or legal counsel with respect to any matter discussed or published in this newsletter.
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NOTICE: This blog and website are made available by the publisher for educational and informational purposes only. It is not be used as a substitute for competent insurance, legal, or tax advice from a licensed professional in your state. By using this blog site you understand that there is no broker client relationship between you and the blog and website publisher.
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