• 4 services Medicare does not cover

    Medicare is a health insurance program issued by the government. The program covers people aged 65 or older, certain people with disabilities, and patients with end-stage renal diseases. It encompasses several plans and is divided into four parts with certain services – A, B, C, and D. Out of these, Part A is free for those who’ve paid Medicare taxes for at least ten years, but the others have to pay a premium.

    Even though the program is helpful for many, some Medicare plans are complicated in terms of coverage. This makes it difficult to understand. They might cover various aspects of health care, but many conditions are not covered as well, some of which include:

    Dental care
    Medicare plans may cover basic health care services and X-rays, but they have a limit of $1,500 annually. Medicare plans may not cover routine dental checkups and treatment of certain dental services. They also do not cover dentures and fillings. However, in the case of emergency hospitalization, patients can use Part A to pay off certain dental services.

    Long-term hospitalization
    Usually, all Medicare plans cover up to 90 days of hospitalization. The benefit period begins on the first inpatient day at a hospital or nursing facility and ends when inpatient care isn’t received for more than 60 days. Furthermore, if the patient suffers two or more accidents within 60 days, the Medicare plans cover the cost for only one of them.

    Cosmetic surgeries
    Original Medicare plans do not cover the costs of cosmetic surgeries. However, if it is due to a deformity or injury, the patient can use Medicare plans to pay for certain health care services such as artificial limbs, artificial eyes, and replacement parts. Furthermore, breast cancer survivors can also employ Medicare to pay for a post-mastectomy breast prosthesis.

    Health care received while overseas
    In most cases, original Medicare plans do not include health care expenses incurred outside the country. However, the expenses can be paid for in rare and specific circumstances, which include the unavailability of the nearest US hospital close to the borders. In addition, certain plans may also cover healthcare services received on a ship in US territorial waters.

    Medicare Advantage plans offered by private healthcare insurance companies cover the exclusions from parts A and B of Original Medicare. Some common examples of such plans are Health Maintenance Organization, preferred Provider Organization, Private Fee-For-Service Plans, and Special Needs Plans. For example, United Healthcare offers Part C Medicare Advantage with $0 copays, dental benefits, prescriptions, vision benefits, hearing benefits, and exclusive OTC credits. All private insurance providers who offer such plans with Original Part A and B benefits must follow the rules set by Medicare.

  • 5 trusted websites to make money online

    Making money online has never been easier! The ever-expanding online world is swamped with legit opportunities that’ll help add some extra bucks to your bank from the comfort of your home. And, the best part is that you don’t always need to have certain skills or qualifications to earn money. Don’t believe us? We’ve compiled a list of trustworthy websites that can help you make money online. Try them!

    If you have a hard time trusting online survey sites, you likely haven’t tried Swagbucks. It is one of the most popular and legitimate websites that will pay you for everything from filling out surveys to watching videos to shopping online. You will receive your earnings in the form of gift cards from top retailers like Amazon and Walmart or cash back from PayPal.

    Interested in taking up some freelance work? Consider creating an account on Upwork. It’s the world’s largest online marketplace to find great clients and grow your independent career. Regardless of what skill you have, be it writing, video editing, software development, graphic designing, or marketing, you can find work in no time.

    If you’re looking for motivation to clean up your closet, then check out ThredUp. You can sell items you no longer wear or need for cash, such as jeans, shorts, tops, dresses, swimwear, shoes, handbags, and backpacks. Another great thing is that there is no shipping fee for sending them your package. Keep in mind that you will receive the payment only if your items are accepted.

    Most of us have electronic waste lying around the house. So, why not make some money by selling them out? With Gazelle, you can trade your old Samsung, Pixel, OnePlus, iPhone, or any other phone, and even iPads and tablets for money. They will also cover your shipping costs. Gazelle pays via check, or they send you Amazon gift cards. Also, you can request a cash transfer to your PayPal account.

    As the name suggests, Skillshare is where you share your skills and get paid for them. All you have to do is make quality videos on your topic of interest like crafts, film, fashion, cooking, or anything else you love to do. The platform will then compensate you for every minute of your video watched by their Premium students. The best teachers on Skillshare make more than $100,000 a year.

  • 4 apps you can use as a side hustle to earn quick cash

    Earning a few quick bucks apart from your primary source of income is always helpful. Whether for selling used items or a side hustle, the internet is brimming with websites and apps that let you make money. However, many of these are not as legitimate as they appear. So, if you want to earn cash with apps, here are the best options.

    This app has an A rating with Better Business Bureau and more than 10 million active users worldwide. It is one of the best apps that lets you earn cash quickly. Swagbucks offers $10 to new users as a welcome bonus. Besides, it is easy to use; all you need to do is watch videos, play games, or take part in search surveys, and the company will deposit the amount in your PayPal account. Swagbucks also gives you the option to redeem the money and use it as a gift card on shopping websites.

    If you are an avid shopper and want to earn cash with apps, Dosh is one of the best options for you. Available on both Android and iOS, Dosh lets you make money every time you use your card for shopping online or at walk-in stores. The amount keeps getting deposited in your “Dosh Wallet.” Then once you have earned $25, the app lets you withdraw the money. In addition, the company has tie-ups with major brands and merchants that offer you cashback if you purchase stuff through Dosh. Plus, you get $5 by simply linking your card with the app.

    HealthyWage is a unique app that motivates you to earn cash by losing weight. It lets you set weight loss goals and rewards you with money accordingly. For instance, its 10% challenge requires you to shed 10% of your body weight in six months in exchange for around $300. However, note that you will be required to verify your weight with your doctor, gym, or any other outlet that partners with the app.

    If you are looking to earn cash for decluttering your living space, apps like Decluttr are for you. The app lets you sell used DVDs, Blu-rays, videogames, and other household electronics quickly. All you have to do is scan the item on your phone, and Decluttr will make an instant offer. Once you accept the offer, you will be required to print a pre-paid label and send the goods. You can drop them off at the nearest UPS store or any other authorized dealer outlet.

  • A 3-step guide to selling a timeshare

    A timeshare is shared ownership of a property, wherein multiple individuals own a “share” of a particular home or property in return for its access for a stipulated period, typically once a year. Investors may sometimes wish to sell their timeshare for various reasons, like the inability to pay for travel or illness. If you want a release from your timeshare ownership, you must consider a few things to sell it fast and safe.

    1. Determine the value
    Owning a timeshare means you have essentially paid for a set number of vacation days upfront. A timeshare’s value decreases over time, unlike real estate, so it should not be purchased as an investment. Additionally, you need to have realistic expectations while reselling it. It is quite likely that the resale value will be lower than the price you paid while originally buying the timeshare. Some owners simply return their timeshares to the property managers without asking for any money, but if you wish to get back at least something, you can determine the value of a timeshare by researching the resort it is located in and checking the prices of similar timeshares currently up for sale. The valuation depends on the location, maintenance, and how long you have owned it.

    2. Pay the maintenance
    Ensure that you pay the maintenance fees before listing your timeshare for resale. This is important if you’re wondering how to sell a timeshare fast, as it prevents repossession and gives your timeshare value.

    3. Choose a selling option
    One of the most reliable ways to sell a timeshare is to contact the property manager and ask for their help. Another option is to run advertisements in the real estate or travel section of a local newspaper. You can also list your timeshare on websites like Craigslist, RedWeek, Timeshare Users Group, or eBay.
    Another option is to rope in a professional resale agent to help you sell your timeshare. Selling your timeshare through agents should not cost anything. If resale companies or agents ask for a large sum of money upfront, it is a red flag. When hiring a resale agent, make sure to check with the American Resort Development Association to avoid scammers.
    Many “timeshare cancellation companies” claim that they can get your timeshare contract canceled, but these contracts cannot be canceled unless you are in your rescission period.

  • 4 reasons for mortgage refinancing

    If mortgage refinancing (mtg refi) rates today are low, many homeowners will rush to refinance their mortgages. It is quite appealing to opt for mortgage refinancing when one can secure a lower rate. This often helps in lowering monthly payments. In addition, refinancing helps pay off the mortgage quicker; some even cash out the equity on their home.

    Here are few reasons why one should consider mortgage refinancing:

    Get a lower interest rate
    If mtg refi rates are low, getting a mortgage refinancing makes complete sense. This is because the interest rate on the existing mortgage will get lower. There can be a saving of nearly 1 to 2 percent. With lower interest rates through refinancing, one can save money. Moreover, there will be an increase in the rate of building equity on the house. In addition, monthly payments will become lower. It is usually recommended to opt for refinancing when the interest rate can be lowered by a minimum of 2 percent.

    Reduce the loan term
    Whenever mtg refi rates fall, homeowners can take the opportunity to get a shorter loan term on an existing loan. However, there won’t be much change in the monthly payments in such cases. The repayment term almost reduces by half, with any change to the monthly payment amount. In some cases, the monthly payment might rise slightly. So, it is important to do the due diligence before opting for mortgage refinancing.

    Convert Fixed-rate or ARM
    In most cases, adjustable-rate mortgages (ARMs) offer lower rates compared to fixed-rate mortgages. However, if there are periodic adjustments, the rate for an ARM may be more. In such cases, it is beneficial to convert to a fixed-rate mortgage with lower interest rates. This will help in securing against future hikes in the rates. On the other hand, for homeowners who do not plan to stay in their current homes and want to quickly pay off the monthly payments, converting a fixed rate to ARM is beneficial. This is useful if the mtg refi rates for ARM are falling.

    Get some quick equity
    No matter what the mtg refi rates are today, refinancing a mortgage can be risky. Hence, homeowners must have a solid reason to want to go the refinancing way. For many, a major emergency expense often requires them to tap into the equity of their homes. In such cases, mortgage refinancing can be a sound decision. College education, home remodeling, or medical emergency are some of the reasons why some prefer to refinance their mortgage.

  • Know the basics of VA streamline refinancing

    Veterans and military families can opt for refinancing offers that give homeowners an option to reduce the ongoing interest rate. VA Interest Rate Reduction Refinance Loan (IRRRL), also known as VA Streamline, is the simplest refinance option, which involves minimal paperwork and overhead costs. However, despite the substantial benefits every scheme is different, and it must be thoroughly discussed with an expert.

    What are the benefits of IRRRL?
    The interest rates will be fixed, contrarily to how they usually fluctuate depending on the market rate. Additionally, there’s the benefit of monthly payment savings once a family signs up for VA Interest Rate Reduction Refinance Loan.

    While the VA borrowers are entitled to 0.5 percent funding fee, that too can be waived off under certain conditions. If the veteran develops a disability due to their service, and is not compensated nor given retirement, the family surviving them are entitled to this benefit.

    How does IRRRL affect the year term?
    With the help of this VA IRRRL the term year of a loan can be adjusted. If your term loan is of 30 years, one can bring down the term to 15 years. However, the monthly payments will be increased. So, it’s recommended that one must calculate the monthly payment and the interest cost over 20 years to understand what’s a better choice.

    Cash-out is an option with IRRRL
    VA Interest Rate Reduction Refinance Loan (IRRRL) allows cash-out on certain terms and conditions and it must be applied before the window of 90 days closes. Additionally, a VA-backed loan can replace one’s current loan with another under new terms and conditions, and it holds an option of cash-out of home equity. Most people opt for cash-out of home equity to be able to pay for student loans, debts, make home improvements, medical needs, and other essential needs.

    Let’s take a look at the current VA IRRRL rates today and get an idea of what can be the lowest. A 30-year VA IRRRL Streamline’s interest rate is 2.75% with 2.894% APR. Whereas, for a 15-year VA IRRRL Streamline, the interest rate is 2.375% and APR is 2.708%. Another VA-backed loan termed for 30 years known as VA IRRRL Streamline Jumbo comes with an interest rate of 3.125% and 3.252%.

    While there are many benefits of switching to the lowest VA IRRRL, one needs to watch the closing costs that incur with every change and it could be a huge amount. So, when calculating monthly savings and term savings, also ensure you discuss the closing costs with your lender.

  • 5 reasons to get commercial vehicle insurance

    Insurance helps cover unexpected costs and liabilities that may incur in the future. Investing in a decent insurance policy also protects your assets, be it rental or owned. If you are a business owner and own or rent vehicles that transport goods and consumables, you must invest in commercial vehicle insurance for the following reasons. There are several monetary benefits, some that also save tax in the long run.

    Some of them are mentioned below:

    Get additional cover
    Your regular auto insurance may not cover all costs that arise out of accidents or personal injury involving commercial vehicles. Also, most personal auto insurance policies are not valid for liabilities accrued out of vehicles used for business purposes. This is where commercial truck insurance will provide customized, comprehensive insurance suited to your business needs.

    Follow regulations
    The law in many states requires business owners to get a commercial vehicle insurance policy. The insurance is mandatory if your business transports goods and hauls heavy-duty equipment. Even if your company provides service from a vehicle, your auto insurance policy will not cover the liabilities. Any business, partnership, or corporation that owns vehicles for commercial use must buy this additional cover.

    Customized coverage
    One of the main advantages of buying commercial insurance is that you get custom cover for specific damage, repairs, or the replacement of certain parts. The insurance provides for anything necessary to protect your business interest from liabilities that arise out of an unforeseen circumstance. The semi-truck insurance quotes are available at competitive prices and can also be modified seasonally to avoid overpaying insurance.

    Employee coverage
    Some commercial policies also provide cover for employees who drive the vehicle. If any personal injury or liability arises from an accident or mishap involving the employee, commercial vehicle insurance will provide for these unexpected costs. The policies are also valid for businesses that do not own but rent vehicles for managing logistics.

    Beneficial for offsetting costs
    Lawsuits can be lengthy, tedious, and create a financial burden on the business. Even though basic auto policies provide cover for lawsuits, commercial vehicle insurance provides double this cover to pay for legal fees, court proceedings, and even damages if the liability falls on the business. More importantly, commercial insurance can be written off as a business expense and is tax-deductible.

  • 5 easy steps to make a successful VA loan application

    Veterans or those on active duty can avail of VA loans for any financing purposes. The federal government guarantees these loans. However, to get them, there are specific steps to be followed for successful application. These steps include everything from looking for the best VA loan lenders to maintaining a stable credit score. Here are a few easy steps to make a successful loan application for veterans.

    1. Get preapproval for the VA loan
    With preapproval, you can determine your budget. This process involves telling your VA loan lender about your homebuying goals, employment history, and military service. Some documents required during this process include copies of your driver’s license, DD-214 or Guard/Reserve points statements, recent pay stubs, and bank statements.

    2. Look for VA-approved loan lenders
    Always shop for a lender who is an active participant in the VA loan program. The best VA loan lenders would offer several options and deals. The deals generally differ based on discount points, interest rates, and VA closing costs. If you face any difficulty, a loan officer can help you find the right VA loan lender.

    3. Get an eligibility certificate
    A certificate of eligibility or COE is proof that you have met all the eligibility criteria for the VA loan. You can obtain the COE directly through the government’s online portal for VA. However, VA loan lenders also offer ways of applying for a COE.

    4. Get a contract or purchase agreement signed
    A purchase agreement or contract is essential to get ahead with the VA loan process. This contract encompasses multiple contingencies, such as assurance of home inspection, the process of handling repair requests, the number of days for the buyer to secure the finances, and so on. A loan officer and real agent can assist you in preparing a robust contract.

    5. VA loan closing
    This is the final step. Before loan closing, most VA loan lenders verify your employment and other crucial information for the last time. Then a Closing Disclosure is dispatched right before the loan closing is scheduled. With this document, you can compare the loan information and final closing costs with the initial estimates.

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