How to Get a Fair Estimate From a Contractor

The purpose of getting a real and quality estimate from a potential contractor can only be achieved IF you give him or her all of the proper input to begin with. In order to compare apples to apples, each potential contractor must be given the same information in order for you to make an informed decision based on the price, length of time to accomplish the job or other criteria.

I suggest typing up a piece of paper and including the main points of the job you want to price out. Make copies and distribute to all candidates for their analysis. Keep a copy for yourself.

Contact the potential contractor and make an appointment to see him or her in person. When visiting him or her, take special notice of the surroundings. Note to yourself if the office is clean, organized and don't be afraid to search for any signs of referrals or other special awards that this company may have achieved.

Listening attentively to his questions and then correcting any misunderstandings at this early point will help avoid costly errors down the road. Smile, be friendly but be sure YOU understand things he or she says. Ask questions to clarify any items that do not make sense to you.

Ask for alternatives if you feel your ideas may come in too expensive. Remember, this contractor should have already finished jobs much like you want him to do if he is a reputable candidate.

Do not allow the contractor to run the meeting. It is YOUR project, YOUR money and right now, it is YOUR time that is being invested. You need to feel confident that YOU are getting what YOU want. He needs YOU as badly as YOU think you need him.

Before leaving the meeting, ask for solid referrals. These should include addresses, amount of time the job took and possibly even the referral's name and phone number. You may not get all of this information, but it won't hurt to ask, Get this information in writing so you can reference it in the future if need be.

Once you know with whom you will most likely be working with, ask him or her to visit your site and do an inspection to make for the best relationship possible.

While interviewing contractors, establish any perimeters he or she will volunteer regarding EXTRA CHARGES and cost overruns. These things inevitably happen on most jobs and you deserve to know as much as possible what the contractor will be thinking BEFORE they happen to you.

When possible, test the contractor on his knowledge of name-brands, dimensions, etc. just to see if he knows what he is talking about. For instance, ask a contractor what the run of a stair means. He should tell you that the run of any stair is the distance of the actual tread less the nosing extending above a typical tread. Typical run on residential stairs is 10" and the largest rise allowed will be 7-1/4". Besides, you'll find it fun to "talk his language" for a while and in the end, he will respect you for that knowledge.

Once you know with whom you will most likely be working with, ask him or her to visit your site and do an inspection to make for the best relationship possible.

While interviewing contractors, establish any perimeters he or she will volunteer regarding EXTRA CHARGES and cost overruns. These things inevitably happen on most jobs and you deserve to know as much as possible what the contractor will be thinking BEFORE they happen to you.

When possible, test the contractor on his knowledge of name-brands, dimensions, etc. just to see if he knows what he is talking about. For instance, ask a contractor what the run of a stair means. He should tell you that the run of any stair is the distance of the actual tread less the nosing extending above a typical tread. Typical run on residential stairs is 10" and the largest rise allowed will be 7-1/4". Besides, you'll find it fun to "talk his language" for a while and in the end, he will respect you for that knowledge.

As you decide with whom to work, you must obtain all estimates in WRITING, never accepting anything verbally unless he is willing to place all verbal communication in writing in a short manner. The proposals (estimates) must include professional looking forms that include pre printed leader head that includes contact information. If not stated on the proposal, ask if sales tax, garbage pick up charges, delivery fees, potential interest (not real likely) are included in the BOTTOM LINE price. Examine the BOTTOM LINE price and if possible divide the square footage of a room addition, for instance, into the cost just to see if the per foot cost makes sense. Again, if nothing else, your potential contractor has to respect your "out of the ordinary" interrogation into YOUR job. Never let him or her bully you through the hoops because YOU are spending YOUR money and deserve to get exactly what YOUR are paying for. Your contractor must make a profit to run his business, but he doesn't have to make all of his profit on YOUR job. Typical profit and overhead on normal remodeling jobs should range no higher than 20% of the job cost for each.

Once you have determined who to work with, what the job description is, the sequence in which things will start to happen, not to mention the completion date and the cost in writing, you will proceed with a much clearer understanding of your own project. Never pay more than 25% down to start the job. Allow him to make some investment in his work as well. Have an understanding (in writing) of when the next 25% is due (as the work progresses) and NEVER ever pay the Final bill unless you are completely satisfied with the end result. Once paid it is sometimes very hard to get a contractor back to fix an issue be it large or small. Certainly quality contractors do respond to their customers' needs, but not all.

Make sure BEFORE the contractor commences any work, that he provides YOU with a Certificate of Insurance to demonstrate his compliance with the law. YOU need to be fully insured by the contractor, should something unforeseen happen to you or your property. Remember too, that this insurance is necessary should one of the contractor's employees or subs get injured on the job. A proper certificate of insurance will include Workman's Compensation to cover such an event.

OK, now that you have decided NOT to proceed with that desired remodeling project, feel confident that after reading just this one article (there are many more) that you are certainly 90% ahead of most people. By now you have created a valuable respect of your knowledge of what is really involved when considering work on your property!

If you find this article helpful in any way OR if you have ideas to support this article, let me know by commenting or email. Thanks for reading!

* Try to be at the job site when the work begins on YOUR job.
* Test the contractor's email and phone service to make sure you will be able to communicate with him when needed.
* Drive by his alleged place of business during different times of the day. Look for signs of ongoing business besides yours.
* Always check out as many referrals as you can.

* There are "fly by night" contractors who just want your money in large doses and then disappear forever with YOUR money.
* Check with the Better Business Bureau whenever possible.

Dentists: Questions to Ask the Staff

If you are considering finding a new dentist, there are a few things you should be prepared to ask about the new office over a phone call. While dentists themselves are obviously a major factor when it comes to choosing a dental office, the staff and policies are also quite important. Read on to find out what you need to inquire about when it comes to these details.

One of the first details to seek out is whether your insurance is accepted, as scheduling an appointment at a location that does not take your insurance may force you to unexpectedly have to pay out of pocket. This should be one of your first questions when you call the dentists that you are considering. You should also ask about pricing on their typical services, as insurance does not always cover all services, so it is nice to be able to compare pricing from different offices. If you do not have insurance, you should find out if the office has a payment plan so that you can pay it off slowly.

Another aspect that should factor in to your decision is how fast you can expect to get in for appointments. Many offices usually offer same-day appointments if you call early in the morning, unless of course they are particularly busy. It is nice to have the convenience of being able to be seen the same day, or at least the next day. You should also find out if they offer extended hours on weeknights and weekends, as this is usually helpful for emergencies. If they do not, find out if they either have a dentist on-call for emergency advice, or could recommend somewhere to go to be treated right away.

Finally, find out the general policies of the office. Most dentists impose a fee if you cancel within a day of the appointment, but it usually varies. You should also find out the average time you can expect to wait before you are seem by a dentist, and whether the practice you are considering sees both adults and children. This way, you may be able to keep the whole family at one dental office.

Clearly, there are many questions that you should ask before you decide on a new dentist. Most involve the policies of the practice itself, which can make the difference between a pleasant experience and a negative one. Calling and asking these questions on the phone is a good idea so that you do not waste any time or money on a practice that you do not like.

Major Distinctions of Traditional Home Loans and FHA Home Loans

Recently FHA home loan products have turned considerably favored for refinance and new home buying. However typical mortgage loans maintain their magnetism, as they facilitate the minimum rates attainable.

One of the core differences is the down payment needs. A few people are not acceptable for conventional mortgages because of the notable equity demands for refinance while the house appraisals have dropped significantly. Thankfully, consumers may have FHA loans with as minimal as 3% equity. Although there could be restrains on those loans depending on house valuations in the neighborhood these loans are possible choices in this market.

FHA loans are assumable, so you can possibly transfer the loan to a qualified homebuyer once the home is transferred, and he will not incur the cost of obtaining a new home loan. This is specially handy if you can secure an attractive rate since this would be sort of bonus when you sell your home. But, if the real estate values increase, homebuyer would have to put more down payments to assume your mortgage or have a new mortgage anyway.

Obviously one of the downsides of FHA instruments is the higher mortgage insurance premium and regular loan insurance costs. Loan insurance could be added onto total loan amount. If you have a considerable down payment you would escape those extra costs. When you do not have the home equity, further FHA loan fees and insurance charges seem to be a good option to permit more applicants to obtain mortgages. High down payment needs are visibly the key concern on the way of regular home loans although a few people possess positive credit rating and sufficient income to manage loan payments.

Supposing you have the down payment, you can find the best rates in the market with a conventional home mortgage. Furthermore, your eligibility requirements and loan amount could be more adaptable. You could haggle lower fees and economize on PMI, too. Otherwise, FHA loans are there to answer a lot of people's requirements.

Four Questions to Ask a Home Inspector

Buying a home is a big deal. There is a lot of money involved as well as time and emotional energy. Home buyers can take months to find a home they wish to buy. When it comes time to select the home inspector to further examine the home there are important things to ask the inspector before hiring him or her.

First you want to ask if the inspector is certified or licensed. Not all states have licensing for home inspectors so make sure your inspector is licensed if required in your state or certified through InterNachi (the International Association of Certified Home Inspectors).

Second you will want to ask if the person is fully insured. Home inspectors should have both general liability insurance and E&O insurance (errors and omissions insurance). General Liability is for the event the inspector accidentally damages something, like the ladder falls on a car and bangs it up). E&O is for just in case the inspector misses something major like a huge foundation issue.

Third it is helpful to know how experienced the home inspector is. Many inspectors are part time. Some are full time inspectors who will personally conduct over two hundred inspections each year. Find out how many years the person has been doing inspections and approximately how many they have done the past year or so.

The fourth thing to ask the home inspector is the type of report they will provide to you. Is it a check list type report or is a computer used to write a narrative type report and does that report include pictures of the home inspection findings? Reports done on computer and that include pictures are often more detailed and easy to understand.

Be sure to consider all factors when choosing a person to conduct a home inspection for you. Also look for testimonials on the inspectors website to help provide valuable information on client satisfaction.

Two Recommended Hospitals in Guadalajara, Mexico

Guadalajara located in Jalisco, Mexico enjoys great weather all round the year. It experiences mild summers and winter. The climate is close to being perfect and is the primary reason that tourists visit this part of the world. The summer period lasts from June to September while July and August see heavy rains.

As the second largest city in Mexico, Guadalajara has a lively social life. Public locations include malls, bars and nightclubs. Research shows that almost 50% of travelers who visit Mexico need medical treatment for some reason or the other while in Mexico. Guadalajara features good medical facilities run by efficient doctors. Some of them even accept U.S. insurance and health plans. Foreigners must check with their local hotels for details about English speaking doctors.

The Civil Hospital of Guadalajara was instituted some 200 years ago. This large hospital has a prominent position, not only in the city of Guadalajara, but also in the entire State of Jalisco. Almost fifty percent of the hospital beds and incubators found in Jalisco are located in this one hospital. Additionally, approximately fifty percent of the pediatric, gynecology beds in the metropolitan area of Guadalajara are found in this same hospital.

Many other hospitals cater to the local and foreign community alike. Hospital Angeles Del Carmen is a prime health care establishment combining the latest technology with expert doctors and nurses. The entire setup of this hospital helps provide the best treatment for the patients. Foreigners can visit the place for pre-existing conditions and / or medical urgencies.

Hospital Angeles Del Carmen takes great care of its patients through its quality and safe health care facilities. The hospital boasts of its experienced and highly skilled doctors who specialize in all areas of medicine. The sprawling campus features 104 rooms including Junior, Suite Angeles and Standard Suites.

Foreigners visiting Guadalajara can refer to these hospitals in case of any medical problems or accidents as their doctors, staff and nurses are very professional and helpful in nature.

Hard and Fast Rules to Buy a New Car

Buying a new car is always a significant moment in the life of a person and needs careful planning. There are many factors which you should consider before buying such as cost, usefulness, safety, service network, fuel efficiency, seating capacity, loan options, etc. The most basic factors to consider when you buy a new vehicle are:

  • A car suiting your lifestyle
  • Budget
  • Loan facilities
  • Available car models in this segment
  • Features available
  • Insurance option

First choose the amount you want to spend on your new vehicle. Research the market to choose the right type.

Confirm the new car prices from various dealers to get the best prices and finally go for the right deal. Different dealers offer attractive incentives and rebates. Choose the best dealer. You should be careful of hidden costs. In case you are taking a loan, calculate the total amount, total interest and the amount of E.M.I and the period of Loan. Find expert reviews from the internet. Check reviews of experts and their comments on the vehicle you are buying. Check out the features and the additional accessories since different cars come with different accessories. Check out important factors that are crucial to you such as safety, service network and mileage. Compare with other cars to check for added goodies. Examine the engine power and other technical specifications.

Check the different loan companies to get the lowest interest on loan. Always ask for bonuses from the car company. Always go for extended service contract or extended warranty. Car insurance is a necessity as it is a government rule. Check different insurance policies from different insurance companies to get the best rates. Before taking the delivery, check the quality of the car. Always test drive the car. Study and be sure that the car you are purchasing has all the features that you are looking for. Scrutinize and check the exteriors and interiors of the car for finishing. Check for the unwanted noise, ride comfort, acceleration, handling and braking. And finally check your car carefully before driving it home.

How to Get the Justice and Compensation You Deserve Following an Injury

What can you do to maximise your compensation payout? Well firstly it's knowing where you stand legally that will give you the advantage. By seeking the advice of a compensation lawyer you can find out all your rights and entitlements to legal compensation.

A compensation lawyer (or personal injury lawyer) is effectively a legal claims handler that has the ability to negotiate a much better compensation payout for you.

Compensation lawyers will:

  • Prepare your claim with supporting documentation
  • List a schedule of items to claim
  • Arrange the necessary independent medical reviews
  • Present your claim to the insurance company and
  • Arrange the best possible settlement

Obtaining compo from an insurance company can prove a difficult task to say the least but appointing a lawyer can help you obtain a sufficient compensation claim. Some people might think that they should just accept the compensation payout offered from Worker's Compensation, or the CTP insurer but the most important thing is to get a second opinion. Australian injury compensation is there to support injured victims, for any losses or expenses that they incur but also for pain and suffering.

Compensation payouts vary considerably - no case is black and white. You need to have your case fully reviewed by compensation lawyers who can advise you of all your rights and entitlements to Legal Compensation.

By obtaining free legal advice from compensation lawyers and you can establish where you stand legally. If you know your rights to legal compensation you can be in a much better position. In many cases people who contact us receive tens of thousands of dollars more from their compensation payout that they would have. This can really help a family who have suffered the impacts of injury.

Remember, never to sign any offer of a compensation claim (compensation payout) that has been offered directly by the insurer ALWAYS get legal advice first from a compensation lawyer.

Find out more about Personal Injury Claims by discussing your situation with a compensation lawyer who can assist you by offering free legal advice and if your case qualifies, may take your case on a ' no win no fee ' basis so it won't cost you anything to make a claim.

A no win no fee lawyer only charges you at the end of the claim when you have received your payout. If your claim for any reason is not successful you do not have to pay a cent. No win no pay it's as simple as that.

Do be careful. There are lawyers out there who offer 'no win no fee' but charge premiums to cover their risk or still charge certain fees if the case is lost, this in not 'no win no fee'. Always ask exactly what their 'arrangement' means.

A legal claims handler (or compensation lawyer) will be able to assess your comp claim and advise you of your options for obtaining Australian injury compensation.

Using Golf Advice to Improve Life on the Golf Course

Getting involved with golfing can be an extremely exciting experience. Players that are just starting out have a lot of things to think about, so they need to take their time to ensure they know the basics to avoid developing any bad habits that could hinder their progress down the line. If players go in with the attitude of being prepared for what faces them, then they are much more likely to do better in the long run.

The first bit golf advice anyone will give them is to shop around when it comes to purchasing equipment. Equipment is the biggest upfront cost and is essentially the cost to get involved in the sport. Shopping around is a lot easier nowadays thanks to the internet, so this is certainly the best place to start. People can instantly compare the same products from a range of different suppliers to determine which place will be the cheapest. Although you should at least try out various golf clubs in your own hands to find ones that feel right for you.

The next bit of golf advice that the majority of people will offer is that golf insurance is essential. Golf insurance can come in a range of setups. A lot of golfers choose to simply insure their clubs in case they get lost, stolen or damaged. The reality is that this cover just is not enough.

Players should look at getting full cover, as this will stop them from getting into any financial difficulty. Full cover will ensure that they are protected if they cause an accident. Any costs that arise as a direct result of the golfers actions on the green will be covered by the insurer, which gives the golfer peace of mind if not a lot of other things.

Finally, the last bit of golf advice that a lot of experienced players will give is that players need not pay the full price for green fees if they take advantage of some of the voucher schemes available. There is a range of different ways for people to get into golf courses for a lot cheaper than they would normally pay. The internet allows people to research all the different types of golf courses. It is often the green fees that put some golfers off so it is great news that there are ways to lower this cost when golfing with a friend.

So, the first place to start as always is online. Nowadays, there are a range of different websites that offer players the chance to get massive savings on green costs. In fact, some the best websites even offer a 2 for 1 voucher. This means that the cost of playing golf is literally cut in half, saving the players thousands and thousands over the course of a year if you play regularly.

Locksmiths Are On Your Side

The first thing that you may think of when you hear the word locksmith is being locked out of your car. This trained and skilled professional is certainly the person to call in such a helpless situation. While the local police may be able to unlock your car for you with a slim Jim or other similar device, a locksmith has the information and skill needed to get into the vehicle without damaging the electrical components that may be inside the door panel. A locksmith is also sure to avoid common mistakes that are often made by an amateur. Window and door seals, automatic window devices, and on board security systems can all be damaged if the task is approached incorrectly, and even though it may cost less money to break in by yourself or to enlist the help of a friend, the damage that you can cause will outweigh the expense of paying for a professional. If you have roadside assistance insurance with your vehicle's policy, then the cost may be covered as a part of your premium.

These lock focused professionals are also your go to guys if you have recently purchased or built a home. Many new homeowners are so excited at the prospect of owning their own home that they do not stop to consider the safety and reliability of the locks. Door knobs and window locks are purchased in bulk by contractors; they are every day locks that thieves encounter every day, and there is no guarantee that a previously owned home's seller gave up all of his keys. You do not want to find out the hard way that one of his less than trustworthy friends has a spare key to your home. Change the locks, and invest in the services of a professional to do so.

He can not only provide you with added security through special bolts, hinges, window locks, and security systems, but he can also provide you with peace of mind and safety by explaining the most common mistakes to home security that are inviting to intruders. What good is a double bolted lock on the front door when the back door is a pickers dream, and the windows can be popped off from the outside?

Remember that added safety features to your home are often a way to a discount on your homeowner's insurance policy. An insurance company would rather give you the upfront discount now than to pay you later for damage and property loss accrued. Preventative devices are a safety net for you and your homeowner's insurance policy, but they will not come to you with this money saving advice; if you are thinking of having or have had security installed in your home by a certified locksmith, contact the company yourself to inquire about existing discounts.

A Few Important Factors While Hiring a Limousine

While hiring an airport Limousine, there are a few basic factors that you should remember. The most important is the reputation of the rental company from which you're hiring a limo. All the rental companies own websites. The easiest way to know about a company's repute is to search a little and you'll get enough knowledge for your satisfaction. Another way is to contact your travel agent; he'll know for sure a rental company with a good history of customer satisfaction and he will book the best.

Insurance is another important factor. Of course you don't expect anything wrong to happen. But to be on the safe side you must know that the service you are using is insured in case of some damage or theft or even accident. If you go in person to the rental company just make sure that you get a copy of the insurance and the other details.

While hiring an airport transportation, you have to look at your pocket too. Cheaper deals attract you as everyone likes to save money but be careful if you are going for them. There may be hidden faults like they may not provide you the latest car or the quality of service. You have to compromise somewhere if you are going for a cheap company so without compromising go for a quality service.

If you walk in a rental company to hire a Limousine for yourself or for your clients, make sure to inspect everything. You must view the condition of the vehicle both interior and exterior, which gives you a very good idea about the car which you are hiring.

Chauffeurs are also an important element of the Limousines. While hiring a Limo ask about your chauffeur, his license, insurance etc. though every good company provides these facilities but make it definite that you confirm too. Mostly chauffeurs are polite and they have the good knowledge of the place they're going. Your chauffeur should also work like a tour guide. For a business meeting, if your client is visiting you from abroad; confirm if the chauffeur is a multi-lingual so he can work as an interpreter too.

The services provide by different limousine companies is another factor to keep in mind. Different limos have different interiors and settings which can be adjusted according to the demands of their clients. Some limousines have fridge, TVs, CD players, DVD players, bar service etc. Ask the limo rental companies about the services they're providing. If you adhere to these 7 factors they can make your day very special.

New Jersey Long Term Care Partnership Program

New Jersey is the second most expensive state for assisted living facilities and fourth for nursing home, according to Genworth Financial's 2010 Cost of Care Survey. However, the state has the least expenditure for Medicare-certified home health aide services. Meaning, New Jersey residents are laden from sustaining institutional care although it is widely needed.

The long term care scenario in New Jersey is as complex as other states: many of these seniors have to spend large chunks of cash that devastate their entire family, and most of them depend on Medicaid as last resort. The ever-increasing long term care costs can afflict emotional and financial stress to many seniors and their loved ones. Medicaid is the only program meant to address long term care issues, but its reserves are not enough to dole out millions of American seniors and the disabled.

Through the years, paying for long term care has been a topic that seniors choose to neglect because it could make them hapless and, otherwise, they prefer to face death rather than become impoverished. There are private LTC insurers, but only few residents consider this option. From middle-income to low-income groups, most of them turn to Medicaid for assistance but to no avail. Medicaid accommodates individuals below poverty line to prevent the rich and privileged from taking advantage of the program to extend their assets. The stringent rules in Medicaid resulted from the extravagant budget that had been allocated for long term care alone that caused some budget deficit throughout the country.

The New Jersey Partnership for Long Term Care is a program designed to address Medicaid's asset limit that would help residents protect their assets and preserve a dignified living as they age. The federal deficit Reduction Act of 2005 modified the Medicaid rules and ratified the partnership program in four pioneer states - New York, California, Indiana, and Connecticut. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services or CMS approved the New Jersey partnership program on February 12, 200 which is made effective on July 1, 2008.

The most substantial feature of partnership policy is the "asset protection" or disregard for Medicaid eligibility process that allows individuals to keep amount beyond Medicaid's asset limit, or continue coverage even after they have exhausted their insurance benefits. Therefore, policyholders can qualify for Medicaid and save the assets allocated for their heirs and families.

The New Jersey Division of Insurance on December 6, 2006 outlined the following features that should reflect in all partnership policies:

• The product name should be indicated and the word "Partnership" must be included
• The first page should contain the issue date
• There must be a statement that clearly declare that the policy adheres the requirements or definition of "qualified long term care insurance" as stated on section 7702B(b) of the Internal Revenue Code
• There must be a statement that shows the inclusion of Inflation protection. Policies are required to include compound inflation protection for individuals below 61 and some degree of protection for individuals age 61-75.
• There must be a statement that only approved or certified agents are allowed to sell partnership policies.

Work Compensation: When Time Is Not on Your Side

Every State requires that employers have a work compensation plan in place. These regulations are in place for every worker's benefit so they can compensate a worker or their dependents for any work related injury or death. However in order to be able to receive these benefits, there are certain procedures that must be followed. Although these procedures may differ slightly from State to State the basic process to follow for workers' compensation are fairly similar.

The regulations that cover a worker's compensation claim only allows for the employee to file a claim due to a work related injury. This means that a worker's spouse or their children cannot lodge a claim for compensation. The only exception to this rule is in the case of death due to an injury or accident at work. In such cases the spouse or other dependents may file for death benefits and funeral expenses under the work compensation scheme. Death benefits are normally only rewarded to true dependents and not simply heirs. These benefits are there to help the dependents carry on living without the "breadwinner's" income. However, should a workers spouse re-marry their ability to continue claiming these benefits would cease. Death benefits will also cease when the main beneficiary dies. There are certain circumstances under which any dependent children may be able to continue claiming after the death of a spouse.

Medical expenses and a loss of income that result from a temporary or permanent injury are typically covered by this compensation scheme. Death benefits include funeral expenses even in the case of a life insurance policy being in place.

An important point for an employee to keep in mind is that an injury at work must be reported as soon as possible after the date the accident occurred. Any person that is acting on behalf of an injured worker can also provide notice to the employer. In some states, an employee is also required to inform the State Industrial Commission as well. Although some states may impose time limits on filing a claim (90 days in some cases), others may be a little more lenient. In the case of death, this time limit may be lifted. If a worker suffers brain injury or incapacitated due to an injury, then again the time limit may be waived.

Once an employer has been notified about an accident or death in the workplace, it is their responsibility to inform their insurers. If the employer and their insurance company accept liability for injuries then a notice of compensation will be issued to the employee. If the employer and insurance company deny responsibility then an employee's best course of action is to engage a personal injury lawyer. Remember, time limits are imposed on a work compensation claim and any action you plan to take must be done as soon as is reasonably possible. Time limits do vary from State to State and can run up to three years, so do not waste time and possibly deny yourself the right to a fair and just reward for your injuries.

Everything You Ought to Know Car Transport

Do you know what car transport is? In simple terms, Car transport means transporting your vehicle from one place to another. You can transport your vehicle either from one state to another or from city to city.

How to find best car Transport Company? You can browse internet with keywords like car transport, auto transport, car shipping, auto transport etc. You can take help of friends who have used various shipping services. Have a look at local telephone book. Choose a company that has been in this industry for decades. Experienced companies would provide best quality service at affordable price. Visit Better business bureau if you want to know more about the company. Find out from the transport company do they provide insurance certificate. Find out if the company is registered with USDOT and whether DOT and MC number is given to them. Make sure that transport companies have professional drivers who can handle your vehicle in any climatic conditions. Do find out about hidden costs before they pick up your vehicle.

How to choose a car transport company? Many people are confused should they choose open or enclosed service. If you are shipping a luxury or classic car go in for enclosed vehicle. If your car is just a regular sedan, it's better to go in with an open transport. Open auto transport is much cheaper than enclosed car shipping. Enclosed car transport protects your car from various elements like dust, air, snow and sun etc. Find out whether your car will be shipped to your home or nearest terminal. If you want to save money go in for terminal shipping. Find out from the transporter the address of terminal, so that you can pick up the vehicle as soon as it is delivered.

Payment and insurance details Find out what payment method the carriers use (credit card, cashier check etc). Some companies may ask for full payment in advance, while some may ask for a deposit. Remaining amount is usually paid during delivery. Never trust verbal promises of a shipping company. Get everything in written. Check your auto shipping contact. Whether all the costs, deductibles, claim procedures, pick up and delivery dates etc are written properly in the contract. Read the contract till you don't understand the basics. Confirm your pick up date at least two weeks before the actual shipment.

Factors to consider before shipping your vehicle: Get copies of insurance policies and other agreements in writing to avoid misunderstandings later. Go through the insurance plan properly so that if any damage has occurred during transit you can claim for damages from Transport Company. Find out how much can you claim in case of damage to your vehicle. Get telephone number of the driver while picking up your vehicle.

Planning for Death

How do you plan for your death? How do you even start? Or to know where to look for the information? Most of us, don't even believe that now is the time to start planning for our death. So, when is a good time? When you get a better job? Wait until you get married or have children? Or waiting until your older?

The answer is NOW. Don't wait until you reach a certain point in your life to plan for this. Stop to think for a moment. Besides reaching any of those milestones, you would still have your family that would have to take care of those plans for you. Now wouldn't you want to not have to put any of your family through that? Let me help you make plans for that day.

Now, If you don't have an insurance policy on yourself, then you are putting the rest of your family at risk. Meaning that they would have to cover the cost of your funeral. Unless you have the money to leave for those arrangements. Speaking from personal experience on being in this situation, recently my family went through this. A close cousin of mine, died suddenly at 35. He didn't have any insurance of any kind. This was the most difficult thing his mom had to ever do. To ask the rest of our family to help bury her child. I hope you never have to be in this situation. This is why planning and preparing is so important.

Besides the insurance, having a burial policy is a good idea too. This way you will have the immediate burial issues handled. This burial policy should take care of your not only the coffin, but also things like the obituaries. Check with the funeral home provider too to be sure of what all is exactly covered in the policy.

Next, a cemetery plot. Yes, you can buy these before time too. To my understanding if you are an active member of a church, you do not have to pay to get a plot in the cemetery. But, please, check with your church to be sure that info is correct. (Because I have been a member of my church since childhood, and I never knew that there was a fee, until my cousin had died and needed a plot.)

Headstone. This fee is separate from all the rest also. Here, you can check to simply get an estimate of the general type you would want to have.

I know that all of this is hard. To picture you planning your own death and funeral. Thinking of insurance policies and headstones. But, this is the same place your family will be. They too will have no general idea about what to do. Help them. Take some of the burden off of them. Losing you was painful enough.

Blackjack Tips To Use At The Casino

Blackjack is a game that features a variety of different types of strategies and rules that anyone should follow. There are a number of blackjack tips that can be used to help with improving the person's ability to work with a good plan for handling individual hands and rounds to where they can be more successful in a game.

It will help to take a look at every single variation at a table before playing. These variations include such things that relate to how a blackjack dealer will play according to the rules and how different bets can be handled in games. These are all considerations that should be used to help with figuring out what one can do in a game.

Another tip to use is to take a look at the card that a dealer is working with. It may be best to stand if the dealer ends up getting a lower number due to how the dealer will have to work harder to get a blackjack going. The dealer will need to hit more often and might end up having to stand at 17 depending on the table that the dealer is at. In fact, if the dealer has to stand at 17 it might be a good idea to double down when the dealer shows a 7 card that can cause this number to be likely.

Splitting can sound like a good idea but it will be important to take a look at the cards that are used in the splitting process. It will help to split when an ace or an 8 or lower is being used. However, it is best to avoid splitting when dealing with face cards or 10 cards.

Doubling down can be a smart move depending on the cards that are involved. It will help to double down with any hand that has 11. This can also be done if the hand is 10 and the dealer is showing a 9 or less. These can provide the best odds to the player.

Don't forget to also avoid insurance. While insurance does sound like a good idea, the truth is that most insurance bets will end up being losing bets. This is also something that is often promoted by casino tables with the intention of trying to get players to spend more. Avoiding the use of insurance on any hand is a good idea just to see that any potential losses that may be involved in the game can be avoided or at least controlled.

These blackjack tips are all valuable things to use when playing this exciting game. These are used to help with improving a player's ability to work with different cards and to easily handle the game as it is being played.

Different Sources of Mortgage Funding in Canada

Most Canadians go to their bank for a mortgage and don't consider other sources of funding for their home. This article will give you a brief description on the different sources and how you can leverage a mortgage broker to do all the finance "shopping" for you.

I am going to take a quick minute to explain a few terms:

Conventional mortgages - there is a minimum of 20% down, good credit, provable income.

High-ratio mortgages - when there is less than 20% down. In Canada, the minimum down payment is 5%.

Second Mortgage - when the client does not want to break the first mortgage in order to get additional cash out of their home, they get another mortgage. This is the second lien on the home.

Some of the different sources of funding are:

1. Chartered Banks - a large financer in the residential mortgage industry by far. They offer both conventional and insured high-ratio first mortgages.

2. Trust Companies and Mortgage Loan Companies - These lenders have traditionally been the leaders in residential mortgage financing. Most Mortgage Loan companies require you to work with them via a mortgage broker.

3. Life Insurance Companies - typically finance multi-residential and commercial properties.

4. Finance Companies - Offer conventional, high-ration and second mortgages. You must go through a mortgage broker to use their services.

5. Credit Unions - are more prominent in the smaller communities. They offer first, second and high-ratio mortgages.

6. Private Investors - individuals or small groups who have cash to lend. You must go through a mortgage broker for their services.

Is there a difference between the banks, trust companies and credit unions? Yes! The banks typically want the best credit and provable income clients. Trust companies and Credit Unions are more flexible with their requirements.

What is the difference between a conventional and high-ratio mortgage? From the borrower's perspective, there is little difference, but the Canadian legislation prohibits most financial institutions to lend more than 80% of the purchase price unless the mortgage is insured against any defaults. You as the borrower will be charged a fee for the default insurance.

Does every lender offer the same rate? NO! You need to shop around and this is where it is a great idea to work with a mortgage broker. They will search for the best mortgage for you.

Things to Think About Before Hiring an Electrician

When hiring an electrician, it is important to do your due diligence and make sure you hire a licensed electrician. It is very important when you have electrical work done to make sure you have any necessary permits and have all the work done up to city, county, township, or other municipal codes. If you do not do everything up to code, it could be difficult in the future to sell the home without having to redo the electrical work.

It is also important to make sure the electrician is insured and bonded. Hiring a backyard mechanic to do electrical work in your house is a terrible idea. If something goes wrong, homeowners insurance is not necessarily going to cover the damages from using a non-licensed and non-insured mechanic.

When selecting an electrician to hire, it is important to spell out how he is to be compensated in the beginning. If it is a bigger job, determine if he will get paid prior to completion for a partial amount. I recommend against paying up front for the electrical work. I also had a friend have a really bad experience with this type of situation. If the electrician cannot do the job and get the materials without being prepaid, it is time to find a different electrician!

Another important step in hiring an electrician is to determine if there will be other contractors necessary for the job and decide who is in charge of the other contractors. If there is going to be a painter or a drywaller, do not assume anything with the electrician and clearly define who is going to take care of that part of the job. If it is something as simple as fixing a doorbell then it is not as important to take this step.

It is also a good idea to know how your electrical system works or at least have a small conceptual grasp of this. Most residential homes have a line coming in from outside that the electric company takes care of. From that metered box it comes into a panel in your home where all the circuits are. Some circuits in your home are for carrying 240 volt wiring and tend to be for bigger appliances like an oven or water heater. The other circuits are 120 volts and are for the smaller things like microwaves or computers.

Having an idea what type of voltage you will need, how big or small the project is, and if the electrician is licensed and insured are all things you need to know ahead of time before hiring an electrician.

Easy Science Projects For Kids And Fun

One of the first science projects I ever saw as a young child was that of a volcano that actually erupted. At only six years old, I couldn't imagine how they made it spew and bellow out real smoke. It was cool.

Science is fun, once it becomes easy and parents are always looking to find those easy science projects for kids that they can complete at the last moment. Kids need to learn about the world around them and what makes things what they are and what makes things work. They need to expand their interests and knowledge and science projects are a great way of doing just that.

Easy science projects for kids are not always so easy for the parents to find. They frantically search the interned at the last minute looking to help their child complete a project that in fact, they knew about for weeks. Following the guidelines below should help ease the minds of those parents looking to help their child with the science experiment and will without a doubt help them get a great grade.

There is a lot more to understand than to think one can rush out and get everything needed to complete the project in a couple of hours. Just knowing what materials are required for the experiment is only the beginning. Parents will need to know how to set up the project and how it should be laid out and organized. Knowing these things will insure just how easy science projects for kids can be. Here are a few things parents needs to know when helping set up the science projects for kids and to insure their child gets the best grade possible.

The project guide should be organized exactly like a science project board containing the following information: the purpose, hypothesis, supplies, procedure, data, results, conclusion and research. Using charts will save lots of time and insure the project stays on track.

As the project gets underway, the importance of using charts becomes quite clear. As one phase or part of it is completed, simply mark through it moving to the next step. This way it is quite easy to tell exactly where you are on the project and how many more steps and time are required to see the results.

While working on your easy science projects for kids, as you move through the list of procedures, keeping the work area clean and free of clutter is important. Do not allow the area to become cluttered as this could cause undue delays on projects that require specific time constraints.

One last thing parents need to know is that keeping their kids engaged in the experiment and giving them ownership of the project will help them understand it is their responsibility to see it to completion. Following these few simple guidelines will just about guarantee that all of your easy science projects for kids are a huge success.

A Discussion on Hospitals in Baghdad

The capital and most important centre of the Iraqi republic, Baghdad is the best city the republic has. A culture that dates back to the most ancient of times and a rich history makes Baghdad a city that feels like out of the world. The city has a unique charm about itself that sets it apart from cities in the west. Having faced many hostilities Baghdad is recovering well since the evacuation of the American army. The government is trying its utmost to offer proper medical and health facilities to its residents and tourists alike.

The public hospitals are affordable and offer good treatment for basic ailments. Nevertheless, if the patients face a serious problem, they might not get attention that is required, since the hospitals have shortage of staff though the equipment is not all that bad. The doctors are firm regarding accepting no credit cards. You need to carry ready cash with you, since every part of the treatment process, right from the consulting part to the tests, need to be paid for on the spot, and separately. A bit of tact and restraint is needed in case you think the attention received is not adequate. Try talking a little politely, instead of getting into arguments. 

Insurance is an important aspect that needs to be dealt with before you leave for a trip to Baghdad. Check with your local insurance provider of the formalities needed to extend your medical policy cover, to the costs incurred on treatment in Baghdad. Most doctors do not accept the insurances. You must always carry the proper documentation with you along with the records of any past medical problems. Most hospital staff possesses knowledge of English; though you may hire a translator. Young Baghdad residents shall be more than happy to extend a helping hand, at a small fee. 

There are pharmacies in the city that give over the counter medicines on producing a prescription. It is safe, however, to carry adequate supplies of such medicines with you. The best known hospitals in Baghdad are the Baghdad Medical City, Ibn Sina Hospital, Al-Yermouk hospital, Shaheed Adnan hospital, al-Hayat hospital, al-Rahebat hospital and the Karkh hospital. The hospitals are of standards that are not really top notch; nevertheless for small problems they can serve you well. For larger issues you would need medical evacuation to a better country nearby.

Electric Bikes - The Cheap Way to Commute

Electric bicycles have been growing in popularity for the past several years. Higher energy prices and increased environmental awareness have sparked people's interest in this new form of alternative transportation. Although riding a standard bicycle is even cheaper, electric bikes will allow you to get to-and-from your destination without breaking a sweat - and without breaking the bank. Here's how electric bikes can save you money:

100% Electric - No Gasoline

Electric bicycles don't use gasoline. So if you live within 10-20 miles of your destination, why waste money (and harm the environment) driving a car? Although electric bikes are limited to 20 mph, you'll avoid the stress of driving and constant stop-and-go traffic. In heavily congested areas, you might actually get there faster on a bicycle.

On average, it costs less than $0.10 per charge to operate an electric bicycle. This translates into roughly a half a cent per mile. In comparison, the average motor vehicle gets about 25 miles per gallon. At $3.00 per gallon, this translates to about $0.15 per mile for gasoline alone - or 1500% more than an electric bike. Add in license, insurance, registration, maintenance and other fees, and the cost skyrockets.

No Insurance or Registration Required

With an electric bicycle, you don't need insurance and registration is not required in most states. Considering the amount of money you'll save on insurance alone, you could pay for a new electric bicycle in just a few months.

No Parking & Limited Maintenance Costs

No need to worry about paying for parking with an electric bike. And while the average vehicle repair will cost you hundreds (or even thousands) of dollars, an electric bicycle will cost just a fraction to run and maintain. The most common repair is fixing flat tires - $10-$20 in damages. And batteries will need to be replaced every 1-4 years (depending on the battery type), but the cost pales in comparison to maintaining a motor vehicle.

Electric bikes provide you with an economical option to your gas-guzzling vehicle. Plus, they're eco-friendly and virtually harmless to the environment! Why aren't you riding an electric bicycle?

How To Determine If Your Security Company Is Stealing From You

I have been involved in the private security and investigation business in Albuquerque New Mexico for the last eleven years. I have seen and heard a lot from new or old security customers about the actions of the security staff whom they employed. I employ a large number of guards myself and have may supervisors to keep tabs on them in the field. I have found there are several top reasons that security consumers become dissatisfied with their security company/ guard. I have noticed several top ways that security companies commonly deceive and rip off consumers. Hopefully, this will give consumers some insight into the industry and ways to keep a watchful eye on their guards.

The Top 10 Ways I see security companies being ripped off and stolen from in the Albuquerque market:

Guards not present, especially at night. This occurs when the client contracts for service and the guard company does not execute. Sometimes this occurs when a guard is actually scheduled but does not show up, some guards aren't even scheduled but the client is knowingly billed for the work.

Guards are asleep, drunk or not performing security on property. The client's expectation is that the guard is working to prevent theft or make people safe when in reality the guard is in his own personal car, sleeping, talking on the phone, computer or watching a movie. I have heard about some guards being drunk or under the influence of drugs while on duty. This is a quality control and supervision problem but it is the security consumer who ultimately pays.

Fraud. Security company lies about performance, vehicle patrol hits and sends false reports.

Theft. Guards actually steal from customers. This is very common on construction jobs, apartment complexes (laundry room theft) or really anywhere.

Unlicensed guards. This brings a host of problems to a customer. Licensing is required by the state together with an FBI background check. No license means the guard could be a felon.

Security company has no insurance. This leaves the consumer without protection in case of litigation.

Negligent security guard. This occurs when a guard does something wrong and the client is liable because they hired the guard or company.

Violent security guard. This causes so many problems and is actually common. Security officers should be screened, hired under supervision and monitored. Unfortunately, many are not and they use improper force on innocent people. Guards often use OC spray (pepper spray), expandable batons, handcuffs and Taser devices when they have no justification under the law. The state requires state approved training but many guards carry these weapons with no licensing.

Security company lies about its experience to get a contract. The client must check references.

The security company or its officers, owners are untruthful. I can tell you first hand that mistakes happen in security. Problems arise on a weekly basis and the best way to handle these issues is to report them to the client. After all, they have the right to know what happens on their property. Many clients report that they don't think that their security company is truthful with them about serious problems and they try to shift blame to others. One big problem for vehicle patrol clients is that the company reports more "hits' for the property than they actually did. The industry term for this is "ghost hitting."

Negligent hiring of security guards and defense of these guard's actions has caused many security consumers lawsuits/ litigation in Albuquerque this year. Historically, the security client is enjoined into lawsuits together with the security company when it is filed.

Security consumers have many choices for guard companies. Choose carefully and beware that cheaper prices can sometimes be a red flag. In Albuquerque, a guard company breaks even when they charge approximately $14 hr. for guard services. This is no profit, just expense (wage, tax, insurance, supervision, company overhead expenses for that guard). New Mexico sales tax is 7% of all gross sales. Consumers can expect to pay $17-20 hr. for guard services depending on the duties for guards. A dedicated car on the property is expensive and adds cost. Vehicle patrol is when a guard drives throughout the city patrolling client's properties. It is reasonable to expect 4-6 "hits" per night for a rate of $500-800 per month. This is a more cost effective solution however it is an area where security companies lie to clients. If a company tells you that you can expect 7 or more hits per night, I would be suspicious.

Do the math. If you want a guard to spend at least 10-15 minutes on your property for a patrol hit then that is 40-75 minutes for an honest company. There is drive time between each property and you have to have several properties to break even, maybe as many as 10. The guard can only work a 10 hour shift so that is a maximum of 600 minutes, with no lunch. Look at the expenses:

Monthly Costs Associated With Vehicle Patrol

Wages/Tax/ Benefits for Guard ($10 hr.)- $2500

Car Cost/ Maintenance- $400

Vehicle Insurance $300

Gas (200 miles per night) $600

TOTAL $3800 per month to break even

I wrote this article to give security consumers some reference on the industry and some of the common problems. The best thing that a consumer can do, from my perspective, is to interview several companies or go strait for the best. Don't make a decision based on the cheapest rates because that does not equate to value in security. Remember that the sales person or owner of your company may not be representative of the actual guard that will do your work. Request an interview of the guard who will work on your property, demand copies of his state license, training certificates and background check. Get copies of state license (from the NM Private Investigators Board), insurance and bond.

What makes Albuquerque so different in terms of the security industry? I am aware about many different security markets but I have never seen some of these problems. Most consumers don't know that the industry is filled with unlicensed companies and guards that have no background checks. If fact, this is the norm rather than an exception. The industry is regulated by the NM Private Investigator's Board under Regulation and Licensing Division but they are under-staffed and unresponsive in many cases. A consumer should be able to call to verify licensing on a guard or company but this can't happen if they don't answer the phone. The Internet verification system is not working as of this writing. I have been critical of the bad overall conditions in the New Mexico security market and in a recent interview, RLD Superintendent Kelly O'Donnell acknowledged this problem in an interview with the Santa Fe Reporter Magazine:

Superintendent O'Donnell acknowledges Hamic might be right about the epidemic of unlicensed security guards.
"I think that this industry in particular faces a real challenge from unlicensed activity," O'Donnell says. "This industry has the potential to attract some people who might be willing to ignore the law occasionally. The board has cracked down on them. Have they been 100 percent successful at that? Well, no."

The full article is here:

Get Published! What Is a Literary Agent and Why You Need One?

You are an aspiring author who wants to get your self-help book published by a traditional publisher, right?

Then let me ask you a couple of questions.

First, how many acquisition editors do you know personally? "Um, er, well...I don't know any" is your reply. Do you know which publishing houses are looking for a book like yours? "No, not exactly..." you say. And how many publishing contracts have you personally negotiated? "Well, none actually" you confess.

Exactly! That's why you need a literary agent.

Successful agents not only know which publishers might have interested in your book, they know the acquisition editors at each publishing name. They have relationships with some of the most important people in your life-the editors who can make your dream of becoming a published author come true.

Some people are a little afraid to use an agent. But you may already use agents for all kinds of enterprises: You probably used an insurance agent to get your health or car insurance. The last time you bought or sold property, you may have had a real estate agent broker the deal. While a lot of people book their plane flights online these days, it's possible that you've relied on travel agents sometime in your life. And while you might not think of an attorney as an agent, lawyers represent you when you're involved in contested legal matters. There are all kinds of agents who have special expertise and can represent you in many important matters. A literary agent is no different.

But what exactly does a literary agent do?

A literary agent is a publishing professional who represents you and your book to viable publishing houses. Your agent will probably give you ideas about how to strengthen your proposal and, once it's ready, submit it to publishing houses that are buying your kind of book. Once you get an offer, your literary agent helps you understand the contract, negotiates changes you might want and ultimately transforms you from an aspiring author into a published author. They have relationships with acquisition editors and knowledge about the publishing industry-both of which you don't have and both of which you need.

Can an agent in the entertainment arena such as movies, television or music properly represent you and your book?

Short answer: No.

A little longer answer: Would you ask your real estate agent to find you the best life insurance policy? Would you want your travel agent representing you in a court of law? Would you want your insurance agent to sell your house? No, no and no. You need a literary agent-the only kind who can get you a publishing contract and properly protect your interests. Remember, the publishing houses have teams of attorneys who carefully write contracts in the best interests of them, not you. They're not interested in protecting your rights-they are interested in their own. And believe me, there are a number of ways publishing houses can tie your hands if you don't know how to read the fine print.

Yes, you need someone who knows who and when to call when it's time to submit your book, what pitfalls may exist in the offered contract and the ability to negotiate on your behalf.

Traveling With Hire Car Companies

Traveling out of town requires good adequate transportation. Those who do not have a good traveling vehicle may decide to hire a car company to provide them with transportation. Most individuals when hiring a car company will look for ways to save money and hassle. To do that they must follow a few basic steps.

First, scope out the car agencies in your location. Many of the companies will operate the same. Usually, for a set amount per day, a vehicle can be rented. Most agencies will provide a customer with a car, truck or any other type of driver/passenger vehicle. The customer will sign a contract with the company,provide proof of insurance, and in most cases be asked to put down a small deposit. The car is to be returned in the same condition, on the day stated in the contract. Failure to do so can result in extra fees being paid. Most agencies will also provide customers with a half a tank of gas, which is expected to be refilled when it is returned.

There are some car clubs that will rent out their vehicle for special events. Most of these individuals expect individuals renting their car to follower stricter rules. You may be asked to take out extra insurance in instances like this. Since most car club members have classic cars; this is not an unusual request. These club members have made huge investments in their cars and do not want to lose their money.

Tips For Leasing a Car

Completing Quote Request Form

Being specific on your vehicle derivative will speed up your contract hire quote request.

Vehicle Insurance

All vehicles require fully comprehensive insurance for car leasing and customers must notify their insurance company regarding the specific use of the vehicle to prevent any problems in the event of a claim.

Contract Hire Vehicle Maintenance

Always refer to the manufacturer's manual for service mileage intervals and check your oil and tyre levels regularly.

Car Leasing Non Maintenance agreements

Please remember that the customer is responsible for maintaining and servicing the vehicle as recommended by the vehicle manufacturer.

Manufacturer's warranty

All new vehicles come with a manufacturer's warranty. Please note that a manufacturer's warranty does not mean free servicing with car leasing.

Roadside Assistance & Free Servicing

Check out the manufacturer's website before selecting your options as we would not want you to pay for something they may be including for free with the vehicle

Save money on mileage

Save money by reviewing your mileage after 11 months and if you have miscalculated the initial estimated mileage, your lease agreement may allow you to reduce or increase the contract mileage by rescheduling the agreement therefore increasing or reducing the finance rental, removing any potential penalty for excess mileage.


Provided you do not exceed the total lease mileage, it does not matter if you do more miles in year one and less miles in year two.

Vehicle Test Drive

Always try and test drive a vehicle before entering into a contract hire agreement to make sure it meets your requirements and expectations.


Before entering into a car lease agreement check your tax implications first as Personal lease agreement may be more cost effective.

Sole Traders & Partners

Sole Traders & Partners benefit from the fact that they are not currently affected by the 2002 CO2 tax regulations. (Only their employees are affected).

Company Car users

Please note when you add more optional extras to a car, this can increase the P11D value, which could increase the benefit in kind CO2 tax you pay. (This does not affect Personal Contracts)

High Mileage Users

The smallest change in mileage can dramatically affect the monthly contract hire cost to you or your company and by checking the manufacturer's service intervals could help your decision to perhaps choosing 28,000 per annum instead of 30,000 and cut costs.

Questions & Answers

If you are ever unsure about anything, always feel free to ask the question especially with documentation.

Fuel Choice

Calculate your estimated mileage and compare fuel costs with mpg for the most economical choice.

Lease Extension

It may be possible to extend your lease agreement while awaiting delivery of your next vehicle.


In the event of an accident always contact your insurance company immediately and then contact your leasing provider.

Special Offers

Please note that special offers are often available on a limited number of vehicles for a restricted period of time. In order to benefit from these offers a swift enquiry is essential as they can change from day to day.

Credit Unions Vs Traditional Banks

Credit unions are becoming more and more popular for people seeking a place to stash their cash. Although you have to qualify to join a credit union, their accessibility is growing. They're typically based around a specific market-employer or church, for example. But today, many have extended their membership to include residents of a specific city or town plus family members.

One of the most significant advantages credit unions have over traditional banks is that, historically, they can offer better rates and fewer fees because of their not-for-profit status. They don't need to inflate the rates to satisfy investors. It includes everything from CD's and money market accounts to credit cards and loans. As you may already know, this translates into more money in your pocket!

Take a quick look at some of the major differences:

Credit Unions

· Serve members, not customers. Only members may deposit money or borrow money.

· Owned and controlled by members. A board of directors is elected by and from the membership.

· Not-for-profit-after expenses are paid, any surplus money is returned to members in the form of higher dividends, lower interest rates, and free or low-cost services.

· Most are insured by the National Credit Union Share Insurance Fund (NCUSIF) and managed by the National Credit Union Administration, which is a government agency.

* Serve groups that share common interests, such as where they work, live, or go to church. They're part of a worldwide support network to share ideas, information, and resources.

Traditional Banks

* Serve customers in the general public

* Owned by stockholders who expect a certain return on investment. Only investors have a vote and authority in running the bank.

* Only investors get a share of profits.

* Insured by the federal government, through the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. (FDIC)

* There are state and national organizations for banks, but typically, they don't share information or resources.

Some of the pitfalls of "banking" at a credit union include: limited ATM networks and possible smaller range of products. For example, not all credit unions offer on-line bill pay. As with any financial decision, it's up to the consumer to weigh the pros and cons to make the best decision based on personal circumstances.

Bank on Yourself Is the Way to Get Wealthy on Auto Pilot

The idea of retiring tax-free seems crazy when you first hear it, but why should we not retire tax-free, the biggest expense in our live is taxes and when we retire we are wealthy then we were when we first started out. So our taxes will be higher not lower, that stinks if you have a large taxable account that the Government can get their hands on.

It doesn't have to be that way though, with the system of Bank on Yourself, you become the bank. To most people that idea just seems foreign. Most people ask how can I become a bank? The answer is in your investment, most people are told to invest in the stock market and that's a good idea but how you do it makes all the difference. The majority of people invest in mutual funds. The idea was that if your investment fund was diversified enough that your retirement would be safe from a dramatic financial loss, but the problem with that theory is that it didn't work. The two thousand eight crash of the stock market proved that. In two thousand eight people lost over thirty five percent in their safe retirement accounts. Even though the next year the stock market had a good return, all of the talking heads were saying that the market was coming back, even though you still were in the red. Now the people that followed Bank on Yourself strategies did not lose anything. During the two thousand eight crash they not only did not lose a penny but they earned two percent tax-free.

You see the secret to making money is to never lose any money, if can never lose then you can invest with confidence. That's the strategy of bank on yourself uses insurance to protect your investment. We insure everything else important in our life. For example your house, car, and boat I would bet to say all have insurance on them in case of catastrophic lose. So why not your most important thing you can not afford to lose. Your retirement. The bank on yourself strategy is not a new strategy its quit old. Insure your retirement so you don't lose any more money in case of another great drop in the stock market.

Before Spending on a New Roofing System - Evaluating Your Roofing Contractor

A new roof system is a sizable investment that you need to plan well. Because it involves some investment, it would be a good idea to spend some time to evaluate your roofing contractors the right way.

One of the most important aspects of your evaluation is to insist that you only work with professional roofing contractors. You want the best kind of results you expect and you can only get this with the professional contractors. You also want to get this project done at a fair price as well.

You have to be aware that not all roofing contractors are the same. It is recommended that you pre-qualify your roofing contractors to ensure that they have the capacity to get the job done right.

In this article, I will feature a few guidelines to help you find the right professional:

License of Your Contractor

The first move that you need to do is check that the roofing contractor is properly licensed. Go to the state's Licensing Board or Department of Professional Regulation. These agencies will provide you with the needed information.

Business Address and Other Important Information

Aside from the license, you also need to check the business address of the contractor. Other important information is telephone number, business license, tax identification number and other pertinent information.

Proof of Insurance

You should also ask for the proof of insurance of your roofing contractor. You should assert your right to see the copies of his workers' compensation certificates as well as the liability coverage. For your information, these aspects vary by state. It is recommended that you consult your respective state laws. If the contractor is not insured properly, you as the home owner may be legally liable for any accidents that may happen during the construction. In fact, there are so many home owners that were dragged to litigation due to the lack of insurance for the workers.

Financial Capacity of Your Contractor

You should also ascertain that your contractor is financially secure as a company. This will ensure that your project will not be delayed due to financial constraints on the part of the contractor. As a practice, licensed contractors will normally disclose his current financial status.

List of Past Projects

Finally, look for a list of the completed projects of the contractor. This will provide you with the overall track record and a reference of the previous clients. You can even call these clients and ask for feedback.

Selling Your Car - 8 Tips for the Best Deal!

When it comes to selling your car you want to achieve the highest price possible. Follow these tips to put more money in your pocket:

1. Clean the car. It is amazing how many people try to sell a dirty car. A clean car gives potential buyers the impression that the car has been well looked after.

2. Don't try to sell without a valid MOT certificate. To achieve a higher price it pays to have a full servicing done as well as the MOT. You will not be accused of selling a non road worthy vehicle later.

3. If your car has suffered any minor damage it will be worth having it repaired. You can buy kits to remove surface scratches and getting minor dents fixed is usually inexpensive.

4. Before you put a price on your car, try valuing it at a number of the websites offering free valuations. You will have a better idea of what it is worth and can produce printed "evidence of valuation" if selling privately.

5. If you are selling your car in order to buy a new one, consider a trade-in as they are much easier to arrange and cause a lot less grief than a private sale. But remember that you will get less money when negotiating a trade-in.

6. If you are selling your car privately, take some pictures. Try to do this on a sunny day as the amount of light in the picture can affect the appeal of the car.

7. You need to decide where to list the sale. If it is a really cheap car you could try your local shop window or a free newspaper. But if you want more money consider listing it on AutoTrader or similar types of car magazines.

8. Write your advertisement out carefully. Yes, you want to attract buyers but don't lie or print misleading information. Simply highlight the necessary information. You want to attract interested buyers but don't want to get thousands of calls asking for clarification on points that should have been listed. So at the very least include:

a. Make, model and year of registration
b. Valid MOT and FSH (full service history)
c. Age, mileage and color
d. Price which should end in 5, 7 or 9 but never 0 e.g. £9995 rather than £10,000 (never put the amount you would be happy with but inflate it a little so you can negotiate with a buyer)
e. Engine size, fuel type and perhaps condition (be careful with this one)
f. Do not say in the advertisment that you will consider all offers as this makes you appear desperate to sell.

Be careful when allowing people to test drive your car. If your insurance policy is named drivers only they will not be insured so unless they provide proof of full cover do not let them behind the wheel as you will be committing an offence. Accept payment only as a bank draft and always check with the issuing bank that the draft is genuine.

Once you have successfully sold your car, you need to provide the buyer with a written receipt showing the time and date of the transaction and remember to keep a copy for yourself. The DVLA need to be informed of the sale but you want proof that you were not driving the car if an offence is committed before ownership is transferred. These tips on selling your car will make the process a lot smoother for all parties concerned.

Pay Off Your Debt - Debt Management Tips

October Edition - Financial Freedom

"A day will never be more than you make of it." Josh Hinds

If your day consists of doing the same things you did yesterday, last month, and last year financially, and you are no farther ahead than you were, then, do something different.

Congratulations to one of our readers. She made a bold move recently and started her own business. She did something different.

Do something different and prepare your own Net Worth Statement. Yes, according CNN/Money, "It's hard to figure out how to get somewhere if you don't know where you are." Regardless of whether your financial net worth is negative or in the positive, it is where you need to start building from that point on. Net worth means that you have calculate all of your expenses (liabilities), and subtract those dollar amounts from your assets (things of value including savings, retirement, houses and car values, etc). The sum is your net worth or owner's equity. Although, unless you need to for insurance purposes, you may not want to include jewels and furs. Forms are easily available if you need them.

The average net worth by age is about $900 for 25 year olds and under; $15,000 for 25 to 34 year olds; $95,250 for 35 to 44 year olds; and $163,334 for 45 to 54 year olds. (source: CNN/Money - pre economic downturn)

The average net worth by income is: Under $25K (x 1000) is $12,500; $25K-$50K is $75,000; and $50K-$75K is $168,450.

Do something different and prepare your own budget. Calculate all of your income from all of your sources, and all of your expenses from food, clothing and shelter, to mortgages, insurances, and car notes, etc. Use available free software to do this. The software will encourage zealous attention to detail. The results will give you suggestions on what percentage of your income you should be devoting to certain categories like insurance, savings and investments, and general living expenses. I ran the free software from Money Magazine's web-site and discovered that I was spending 10% more on insurance than I should, and like most people I was investing about 17% less on savings than they suggest.

Budget calculator link:

Using these software tolls may take a little time, but considering that most people spend more time planning a vacation, the time spent will be worthwhile.

Creating Extra Money Tip of the Month - Use debt elimination software to calculate how much you should pay on each credit card (bill) each month and systematically eliminate everything from the high interest "bad debt" to the lower interest rate debt in a very short period of time while using the same amount of money you now spend each month on those same bills.

What's left? Lots and lots of cash.

Keeping Your Car Costs Down

In The recent economic climate people are trying to save money in any way they can. One of the ways people are saving money is by keeping their car costs down. There are several ways to lower your motoring costs some bringing a more drastic saving than others. A lot of what you can do is often limited by your circumstances. It's no good buying something like a Ford KA when you have a wife and three kids to cart around town especially if one child needs a car seat rather than a booster. If you don't need that huge four wheel drive car you have to commute into town, or that huge engine size estate car because you don't have a caravan an option is to downsize cars. Smaller cars often have smaller engines but because they weigh less are just as nippy. This could easily half your fuel costs. If you can change from a petrol car to a diesel car brilliant! Diesel cars are much more fuel efficient and a great way to save cash, especially if you drive a lot of miles.

Car insurance offers another saving. People just want an easy life and insurance companies are fully aware of this. That's why it is much more likely you will get an amazing deal with a new company. The company is banking on getting your custom and keeping it in the long time and recouping their previous discounts. Shopping around for a better car insurance deal is now much easier as there are several one site checks all web sites. Changing insurance companies is not a huge task that can return a huge saving.

The penultimate thing I suggest is a bit of TLC for your car. Even 5 minutes spent checking your tyre pressure can save a few miles per gallon. Keeping your car serviced can keep your engine efficient especially such things as changing air filters on time.

The last thing I suggest is quite simple and often overlooked, and that is to slow down! Most of us drive faster than we need to at some point. Cars have a sweet spot for efficiency and once revs go above this level the fuel usage can double. If you can adopt a more relaxed driving style that utilises better planning such as gradual breaking at junctions can save fuel and money.

Universal Health Care From All Over

The health care reform bill has recently been approved in the US. Because of this the Europeans are gloating that it took this long for this kind of legislation to be passed. Europe has always had their systems controlled by their governments. The US has finally come around to this concept.

In history, Germany has one of the oldest universal health care structures. It dates back to, their first chancellor, Otto von Bismarck's legislation. This was followed by Britain in 1911, which covered majority of employees including their dependents provided they were giving to the scheme for a minimum of 5 yrs. In 1948, following the signing of Article 25 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the National Health Service was created. This broadened the security of the government's health initiatives to include all legit citizens of Britain. Majority of other countries that signed the Human Rights Declaration followed suit with their own versions of health care systems. The US was one of the signatories who did not ratify the right to health.

Universal health care, no matter what country implements it, all have one thing in common, that is, there is some form of involvement by that country's government whether through regulation, legislation or taxation. They usually prescribe what sort of care must be given, based on what, & to which particular individuals. Some programs are partly paid by the client with most of the costs from either taxes or obligatory insurance while others are shouldered by taxes alone. Sometimes, the government runs the system directly.

Different countries have various systems for universal health services depending on the degree of involvement of the government. Switzerland and the Netherlands have systems run by private companies which are heavily regulated by the government that they cannot take advantage of the mandated insurance. They make their killing through supplementary insurances. In Italy, Spain, UK & some Nordic countries, the government is fully involved in health care services and eligibility is based on citizen rights and not mandatory insurance.

In Canada, the system is funded by taxes but private companies supply a lot of the services. The physicians collect a fee according to the services rendered. In Australia, 67.5% of the system is funded by the government while the rest is shouldered by private companies. In nations such as France, Germany, & Japan, they use a multi-payer system-health service funded by both public and private sources. The private funding comes from employees, together with their employers, contributing to sickness funds that are regulated. The contribution depends upon an individual's salary.

Marital Strife, Verbal Abuse, Infidelity? Only Consult Certain Experts to Fix Your Marriage!

As a marriage therapist in Cary, Crystal Lake and Huntley, Illinois, I have treated many couples to repair the damage caused by previous counselors who did not know what they were doing. It is crucial to get the right help the first time!

You may not realize just how many types of counseling providers there are until you need one. Should you see a psychologist, a psychiatrist, a social worker or a professional counselor?

Or, perhaps, first, you should attend a professional seminar, attend certain classes or consult a minister? The answer depends on your unique situation, including your finances, urgency of the situation and whether or not you and your spouse are willing to be forthcoming with a professional who you do not know.

Most counselors or therapists have either a masters degree or a doctors degree. For master's degree counseling professionals it can be confusing because, depending on their qualifications, they can practice under different licenses.

Common examples include the licensed professional counselor (LPC), the licensed clinical social worker and the licensed marriage and family therapist. Counseling professionals who have their doctorates are usually licensed as psychologists.

Physicians specializing in mental health treatment (psychiatrists) have little advanced training in counseling but are considered experts in the prescription of psychiatric drugs.
Family medicine practitioners may also diagnose mental health conditions and prescribe psychiatric medications, though they usually have little training in either of these areas.

When selecting a marriage therapist, consider the following:

While most therapists can provide counseling for a range of issues, a counseling professional specializing in marriage and family therapy usually would possess greater expertise in marriage problems. For example, a psychologist who uses psychological testing and has advanced training in family therapy would be ideal.

To enhance the odds that your family and marriage problems can be solved, a spouse or child may need medication to battle such problems as ADHD or chronic depression. Your family doctor can legally prescribe psychotropic drugs.

However, depending on your needs and the intensity of the symptoms, you might want to consult a psychiatrist, a medical doctor who prescribes and manages psychiatric medications. The seriousness of your marital problems is a crucial variable.

Generally, the more severe or complicated are your problems, the more expertise and training you need to look for in your therapist. Consulting a master's degree level counselor often is sufficient.

However, family problems, combined with severe psychological issues, such as schizophrenia, alcoholism, bipolar disorder, ADHD and severe depression may require consulting with a psychiatrist (for medication), psychologist (for diagnostic testing and therapy) or both.

The type of health insurance you have is also an important consideration. Check your policy beforehand because coverage can vary widely.

Your insurance policy may have a list of specific counseling professionals covered, or may only reimburse certain types of therapist providers. Your insurance company can explain what types of counseling providers it pays and what limits apply.

Another form of therapy, a Self-Therapy Kit (STK), is self-help for non-urgent problems and does not involve your insurance company or, for that matter, mental health providers. STKs are not for you if you have dangerous problems in your relationship such as, physical, sexual or child abuse; in those cases it is imperative to consult a professional.

STKs are a type of educational therapy that focuses on helping you and your partner to eliminate or reduce non-urgent, non- dangerous symptoms in your relationship. They are educational therapeutic programs that require no medicines or counseling.

Just browse a selection of STKs and select one that will demonstrate how to detect infidelity, what to do about it and how to eliminate verbal abuse and other relationship-destructive behaviors. They are designed to assess options for your marriage and then advise how to implement a behavioral program to get your marriage back on track.

Usually they provide some combination of: daily personal coaching through phone or internet, visual and audio examples and solutions for poor communication, email consulting and specific back-up techniques to implement quickly in a crisis. They are often ideal for those who are so private that they would rather not consult an outside professional.

STKs are multimedia packages that usually deliver direct coaching, targeted advice and solutions and easy to understand directions which show what to do to eliminate verbal abuse and to dramatically improve your marriage.

WGA and WIA in the Netherlands

On the first of January 2006 the WAO was replace by the WIA, a new Return-to-work scheme (Wet Werk en Inkomen naar Arbeidsvermogen). And the WGA, Return-to-work scheme, this is a scheme introduced for persons not found fully and permanently disabled who are no longer able to earn more then 65 percent of the income of a persons with comparable levels of education and work experience.

Also the WIA (Work and Income act) was introduced.The new WIA consists of two statutory provisions:

  • the Regulation governing income protection for individuals registered as wholly and permanently incapacitated (IVA)
  • the Regulation governing the re-employment of partially incapacitated individuals (WGA).

The WIA has two aims: to promote reintegration and to protect the incomes of employees who are restricted in the work they can do due to illness or incapacity. The primary aim is to promote a return to work, i.e. to increase the long-term reintegration of employees with (temporary) health-related work restrictions.

Employers have to cover the risk of partial disability under the WGA. They can choose between private insurance companies and the public insurer (UWV) or may even carry the risk themselves.

The financial system is based on an activating system: employers with many ex-employees on disability benefits pay higher contributions than employers with fewer employees on disability benefits (experience rating). The contributions consist of two components: the basic contribution (the same for all employers) and the differentiated contribution. This latter one differs per individual business and is applicable to the first ten years of every benefit for employees of that business. Employers who have opted to carry the WGA risk themselves only pay the basic contribution. These employers have opted to carry the financial risk of disability of their employees fully themselves for the first ten years, or to take out insurance with a private insurer.

Specialised companies have introduced a contributions scan for the WGA contribution (WGA premie) The aim of the scan is to catch persons that are not entitled to receiving a disability benefit and to revoke that or to grant IVA benefit.

Sedation Cosmetic Dentistry - Find Out Who Needs This Kind Of Treatment

Most of us weren't born with a naturally perfect smile. There's always something that isn't quite right, whether its misshapen teeth, gaps, damage or discoloration. These imperfections can make it very uncomfortable to show your smile, even around friends and loved ones. Even with the stress and self-consciousness that goes with having a lackluster smile, fear of the dentist causes many people to never even try to improve the situation. Sedation cosmetic dentistry can change all that.

Sedation Cosmetic Dentistry Information

Cosmetic dentistry is designed to give people their most beautiful, dazzling smile. Cosmetic dentists are the ones who give Hollywood stars their perfect, bright white teeth. These dentists are qualified to handle all the normal dental health procedures of your regular dentist, but also offer cutting-edge treatments to beautify your pearly whites. Laser whitening, porcelain veneers and invisible orthodontics are among the many treatments offered by cosmetic dentists.

Sedation dentists specialize in treating patients who experience fear and anxiety about visiting the dentist. Also referred to as "sleep dentists," sedation dentists offer patients anti-anxiety medications or (in some cases) anesthetic options for making their dental visits as stress-free and pain-free as possible.

For many patients, it's embarrassment over their smile or their tooth condition that makes them nervous about seeing a dentist in the first place. Sedation cosmetic dentistry is specially designed for this sort of patient. Sedation cosmetic dentists understand the frustration and lack of confidence that come with an unsatisfying smile, and provide their patients with a calming and confidence-building dental experience.

Sedation Cosmetic Dentistry Costs

Even for standard checkup and cleaning visits, dental care can be expensive. Most insurance providers offer very limited coverage for special procedures, causing both sedation and cosmetic dentistry patients to pay out of pocket. In cosmetic dentistry, the costs can be equated with cosmetic surgery, which is also rarely covered by insurance providers. Since it's seen as voluntary, rather than necessary, treatment, insurance companies typically don't offer any assistance in offsetting cosmetic surgery or dentistry costs.

Sedation dentistry requires the use of sedatives or anesthesia, which is also paid for out of pocket. For most basic visits, sedation dentists will administer anti-anxiety medications such as diazepam (Valium) or triazolam (Halcion). These medications can cost up to $400, depending on your insurance and prescription coverage.

For more extensive procedures, anesthetics ranging from regular nitrous oxide "laughing gas" up to general or intravenous (IV) anesthesia may be recommended. Anesthetics must be administered by a dental anesthesiologist, who are typically not part of your dentist's practice. Anesthesiologists typically bill in time increments rather than by the procedure, so their rates may escalate by procedure. The cost of anesthetics is rarely covered in cosmetic and sedation dentistry, meaning patients must pay for both the anesthesia itself and the billing from the dental anesthesiologist.

Despite the out-of-pocket costs, cosmetic dentistry patients generally consider their treatments a small price to pay for confidence and feeling attractive. More and more people are turning to cosmetic sedation dentistry as a way to get the brilliant, beautiful smile they've always wanted.