Hastings Insurance Solutions LLC
2435 Kimberly Road
Bettendorf IA 52722
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."
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Recipe: Ghostly Coconut Macaroons
Yields about 24 macaroons
- 4 large egg whites
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1-2 teaspoons orange zest
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 4 cups sweetened shredded coconut
- 8 ounces bittersweet chocolate chopped and slowly melted in the microwave.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Whisk together the first five ingredients in a medium-sized bowl until the sugar and salt are dissolved and the mixture is frothy.
Add the coconut and stir until moistened and combined. Shape mixture into about two dozen 1 1/2-inch balls and place on baking sheet. Bake for about 10-15 minutes or until just starting to turn golden.
Remove from oven and cool completely before decorating. Dip macaroons in melted chocolate or use a toothpick dipped in melted chocolate to draw eyes on your coconut ghosts.
This month, the world according to author Dr. Seuss:
I like nonsense, it wakes up the brain cells. Fantasy is a necessary ingredient in living.
You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself any direction you choose.
Oh, the thinks you can think!
The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you'll go.
They say I'm old-fashioned, and live in the past, but sometimes I think progress progresses too fast!
Step with care and great tact and remember that Life's a Great Balancing Act. Just never forget to be dexterous and deft. And never mix up your right foot with your left.
It's not about what it is, it's about what it can become.
How to Pick the Homeowners Policy That's Right For You
Congratulations! You've made the decision; it's time to become a homeowner. But before you even start your home search, look into the kinds of homeowners insurance you'll need. Follow these tips to protect your new family home for a lifetime:
Insure your home at replacement value
When you purchase homeowners insurance, Occasionally you'll have a choice between actual cash value and replacement value. Actual cash value insures your home at the amount it was purchased for. While this seems like a good idea, keep in mind that housing prices fluctuate with the market. Replacement value covers a total loss, including rebuilding and labor costs. It's pricier than actual cash value, but worth the investment.
Purchase flood insurance or other endorsements
Consider where you live and the correlated risks. Water damage from a burst pipe is typically included in your home policy, but if a flood ruins your basement, you're responsible for the damage. Live in California? Earthquake damage is also very expensive and isn't covered by most insurance plans. Find out if you live in a high-risk location that is prone to floods or earthquakes. Floods are the most common natural disaster in the U.S., so the extra insurance cost is worth it.
Set the right liability limits
Most homeowner policies automatically include a $100,000 coverage limit, but that may not be enough. In an accident, you could be held responsible for property damage and bodily injury totaling well over $100,000. Evaluate your personal assets and earning potential to find the right limit.
Avoid These Three Mistakes When Buying a Health Plan
Whether you're purchasing health insurance through your employer or an independent market, there's no such thing as "one size fits all" healthcare. Choosing the right insurance plan for you requires careful consideration and research. While fine print can be confusing, it's worth taking the time to understand the details of your health insurance plan, as well as your personal situation.
Here are three common mistakes many people make in selecting a health insurance plan:
Choosing an inconvenient network: HMO and PPO plans work within a healthcare network. Visiting a doctor outside that network can be expensive. Ensure your primary care doctor is covered by your health plan, but don't forget to check on specialists and emergency care as well.
Over or under-insuring: A young, healthy individual without dependents may not need as much insurance as one with a family of four. Over-insuring yourself means you'll pay higher premiums for care that isn't used. But under-insuring can be even more expensive if you're faced with a serious disease or accident; even a significant amount of coverage may not be sufficient. So don't skimp, and be sure to examine the fine print for procedure-specific limits and out-of-pocket maximums.
Focusing on deductibles and co-pays: Trying to limit your out-of-pocket costs with low deductibles and co-pay amounts may seem like a good idea, but could cost you more in the long run. As long as you can afford it, raise your deductible amount and try eliminating co-pays. You might be surprised at how much you really save.
Take Your Computer Pill: It's Good For You
Swallowable micro-computers are revolutionizing health care - and raising concerns.
The size and shape of a pill, these computers monitor your body's systems and record your vital signs. Some can even follow your body's response to medications.
They share information with doctors wirelessly, in one case through a cellphone app. Connected to the outside world by a wearable patch, this pill effectively runs on you, generating electricity as soon as it hits your stomach.
Some have raised privacy concerns about wider access to the most intimate goings-on in your body, but robo-pills could help prevent complications in a host of diseases or ensure you receive treatment quickly when needed.
Bambi Collisions Can Raise Your Car Premiums
Fall is deer hunting season, meaning it's time to hit the brakes for Bambi, and also review your auto insurance.
From September to December, deer migrate and mate, increasing chances of collisions. According to the Insurance Information Institute (III), the top month for deer-vehicle collisions is November, with October second.
Many are serious: An estimated 200 people die in deer-vehicle crashes annually. But even minor collisions will cause costly damage. One large insurer's claim history indicates that deer hit over one million vehicles in a 12-month period - that's one million reasons to double check your current policy to be sure you have adequate coverage.
III says the average cost of a deer collision claim totals $2,800. Typically, animal-related damage is covered under comprehensive coverage, not collision, but only if you hit the animal. If you swerve to miss Bambi and hit a tree, guardrail, or other car, it becomes a collision claim.
Although the damage would still be covered under your collision coverage, collision claims are rated the same as at-fault accidents by insurers, which likely means an increase in your premiums. Comprehensive claims - unless several claims are filed around the same time period - won't generate a similar increase.
If you have both coverage types, review your deductibles. Raising deductibles is a popular way to save money, but are you ready to pay $1,500 towards deer damage? Even if you answered "yes," it's easier to save money by avoiding deer altogether, which you can try to do by following these tips:
Fall Driving Tips
Keep your eyes open between sunset and midnight, and early morning when deer are most active.
If you see one deer, more are likely to follow.
Slow down at deer-crossing sites.
If you have no choice, hit the deer, not another vehicle or object.
Following these tips will help protect you...and hopefully, Bambi.