16. January 2017 · Comments Off on Small Business Finance – How to Calculate Your Needs · Categories: Finance

Your optimism on the future of the business may overshadow the crucial aspects and specific details required in keeping the business on the progressive status. Sometimes, owners happen to be very aggressive and confident in terms of financial standing that they tend to become very lax when dealing with borrowing money. This creates a big problem since every cent of the money borrowed needs to be put into proper use. Unfortunately, what happens to some is that when they have the chance to borrow money, they borrow more (or less) than they require.

So when it is time for you to take a small business finance, you have to know how to calculate your needs.

There are several factors that affect the amount of money you need. They are worth discussing one by one.

Credit rating – The eligibility for a loan, especially on small business finance, is based mainly on the credit rating of the person. A good credit score means higher amount of loan and lower interest rate. Tip: Obtain a copy of your credit report long before you approach a lender. With a good lead, you have enough time to improve it further or to have your score fixed should there be any inaccuracies. Also gather all your business documents. This includes financial statements with attachments and schedules, tax returns, financial statement (interim year-to-date), and other documents that will help the lender assess your loan application. By doing so, the processing time is reduced.

Savings – Establishing a business or keeping a business running requires a good capital. Pulling out money from your saving will significantly reduce the amount of money you require for a loan. Tip: before you borrow money from lender, tap your resources first. This can cut the amount of money borrowed and the interest you pay, which in turn will increase your profit further.

Expected return/monthly expenses – Before borrowing money, project the amount you can afford to pay back. Your expected income minus the monthly expenses should be well over your loan payment.

Amount required – How much money do you need? Where should the loan go? These 2 questions should be answered first before you go to a lender. You do not simply say, “as much as you can lend” when you asked by the lender on how much money do you need. A reply like this will definitely shut your chances of getting a loan. Have a good estimate of how much money you need. Know where the money should be spent. This way, you can better plan the repayment or project whether or not you can afford to pay the loan back. Another good thing about knowing exactly how much you need is you can carefully manage your finances against other factors that were mentioned above.

Your credit rating, savings, expected return, monthly expenses, and amount of loan required should therefore be included when calculating your needs.

How to Calculate Your Needs?

Once you know where the money should go, identify which items are optional and which are necessity. Having a good funding on your small business is imperative but creating an impartial judgment towards management of funds will bring you a long way. Pinpoint the total amount of money you need by enumerating the small detail. For example, the start up expenses you may include: installation of fixtures and equipment, fixtures and equipment, decorating and remodeling, starting inventory, licenses and permits, legal and other professional fees, deposits with public utilities, consulting and software, advertising and promotion for opening, cast, etc.

Then ask yourself, “Can you afford to pay for the loan?” Borrowing is easy, paying it back can be a problem. So to make sure that you can afford to pay the money back, make a good projection of the future income of your business. Compute your monthly expenses which may include the following: monthly expenses, salary of owner-manager and staff, rent, supplies, advertising, telephone, utilities, delivery expenses, insurance, interest, taxes, maintenance, legal and other professional fees, etc. Deduct these expenses from the projected monthly income. Is your net income more than enough to pay your loan? If yes, then the loan can be borrower. If not, then it is not worth the risk.

Finally tap all your available finances. Do not rely entirely on your lender. Subtract the amount of money you need from your savings. The difference should only be the money you should borrow.

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10. January 2017 · Comments Off on #EANF# · Categories: Health Insurance

The health care and health insurance dilemma in the United States penetrates and corrodes the very core of the quality of the American life. Our politicians and legislators are falling all over each other to produce both State and Federally mandated solutions for one of the most expensive problem facing our nation today. Documentaries such as “Sicko” with Michael Moore, and countless television stories and newspaper articles scream the need for change. As the never-ending inflation of medical services and prescription drugs rises, the bureaucracy of the insurance providers keeps pace by increasing premiums, and lowering quality of coverage for most Americans in their health plans. Drug companies are under constant scrutiny to offer more competitive pricing, but face little regulation compared to the foreign countries who have elected to impose cost controls endemic to their individual society’s perceived needs.

So in the face of such a negative equation, how does a capital-driven society like the United States of America re-vamp its health care system, and still maintain the theology of “choice” and “capital market competition”? And how do we do it without killing more Americans?

To answer these questions it is necessary to take in to account what works and what doesn’t in both American society and other societies where socialized medicine is the norm. The problem that Uncle Sam and many self-made American business folks have with socialized programs is the ability of such programs to denigrate a societies progress, and step away from our independent roots, both financially and health-wise. In order to continue to allow health insurance providers to shore up their billions of investment dollars ( a key pillar in our financial framework) and still take care of every American who is sick requires us to radically change the way the risk of such health problems is transferred, but to still collect regular premiums from taxpayers to fund the collective system. My proposed solution will be spelled out in this article in relatively simple terms forming a base architecture which will allow independent insurance providers to remain, independent hospitals and doctors to remain independent, and drug companies to remain competitively profitable while still insuring every American.

Proposal Architecture

I would propose a three-tiered system for Health Insurance, Prescription Drugs, and Medical Providers of all types:

I. Insurance Method

In order to keep insurance companies profitable and provide 100% base health coverage to all Americans at the same time, you need a combination of the net effect of socialized medicine and American free trade. A fund must be created by the federal government which closely mimics a Re-Insurance Company. Most insurance companies whether in the health field or commercial insurers have large re-insurance agreements and policies with major funds. A classic example is Berkshire Hathaway’s “General RE” which underwrites some of the largest global policies in the world in their niche. For description purposes, the federal government needs to take the opposite approach of a non-profit, heavily taxed medicare and insurance system by creating the world’s largest re-insurance vehicle. The re-insurance department is funded by A) a percentage of all health care premiums from all health insurance companies, and B) a 1.5% federal income tax increase across the board for all Americans. From this point forward, all health insurance providers are required to have a BASE INSURANCE LEVEL on all policies which will include a) full prescription coverage included, b) all doctor visits covered, and c) full major medical coverage with no deductible.

From an actuarial standpoint, what you are doing is not eliminating health insurance premiums for Americans. All working Americans who earn more than $16,000.00 per year must pay a scale-adjusted premium of the same category and type for the “base policy”. The scale for premium is driven by total income per individual or household based on their current employment. However, you have just turned the entire insurance industry in to one big “group plan” where the risk is spread out over the entire country. Using the proportion of healthy Americans to those requiring services at any given point, this simplistic approach lowers the premium for the base policy to affordable levels for all wage earners, and gives the base policy for free to low income individuals and families. Those people who meet the low income standards get the same base insurance as everybody else, and are required to file with a private insurance company of their choice for insurance. The federal RE fund pays all insurers a minimum base amount equivalent to what they would get from a paying client. The “Federal RE” model receives 30 to 35% of the private insurance company’s base premiums for all policies. The base premiums and the amount each individual must pay is determined by an actuarial committee of the new federal RE fund, but should be adjusted very rarely. Once the percentage is set, it becomes law, and the 1.5% tax increase across the board is primarily a cushion for the low income and poor.

Insurance companies then endeavor to differentiate themselves by adding features to the base policy for their clients for their marketing and packaging. They do NOT differentiate themselves by providing sub-standard insurance, as it is not optional. The base policy for all is a major medical insurance policy based on California Standards, and covers all co-pays and deductibles 100%. In order to make additional insured dollars, the health insurer must provide more elite services to guarantee a client who is willing to pay for additional features an even better position than the base position. This enables the following to occur in logical order:

* The federal government actually makes money on investing insurance premiums the way insurance companies do by their re-insurance department. Risk is spread out over each American that can afford to pay premiums. Premiums are minimal because of the inflated group size and reduced insurance company risk. The combination of a small federal tax increase to hedge dollar volume and beef up the account combines with receiving the RE premiums and investing them makes this federal program slightly profitable, and with the ability to adjust policy when needed.

* Insurance companies lower their risk, and are able to simplify and streamline their base coverage for major medical. Since all rules apply to all insurers (new or old) they can compete based on important but “ancillary” products to improve the insurance quality of those that can afford extra benefits. Major payouts will be largely reduced due to automatic RE participation on the policy’s base components.

II. Prescription Drug Costs

By making Federal RE the “co-payer” in most medical transactions for both medicine and medical services, you have also created a need for a private-style approach to controlling the cost of drugs and other prescriptions. This is a sticky area, because development costs for drugs are hyped as being out of control if they cannot be later recouped with high prices.

Since the federal government in the form of Federal RE is now a payer/customer of the pharmaceutical companies, prices for medications must find a happy medium to allow for development and free trade, but with sane maximums for purchase. It is the job of the federal government to prevent monopolies. A monopoly is not defined as a single producer of a product (or drug) being the only source for a given product. A monopoly is defined as that single-source-producer charging an amount which hurts our society, and potentially prevents competition. (generic drugs) Standards must be developed for the maximum payment amount allowed for each category of medicine and medical supply. This will be an ever-changing exhaustive piece of work, done on a very ongoing basis by employees of Federal RE. The purpose is never to set prices, but to determine the maximum the fund will allow an insurance company or itself to collectively spend on a medication, taking into consideration all aspects of the newness of a product by using fluctuating actuarial and monetary scales. If a Pharmaceutical supplier will not meet these maximums, then unfortunately, the medicine will not be available until they are willing to bend. This is a flaw in the ointment than cannot be fixed any other way due to the way drugs are really developed in the United States. Americans who add to their “base policy’ with supplemental insurance that covers expensive cutting-edge medicine could receive the medicine, but not the base-only policy holders. Drug companies will therefore be forced by demand to reduce their charges at least to the point of scale, in most normal scenarios. This portion of the plan cannot be altered to appease any particular party, because if you do the entire buying system falls apart. However, groups currently involved in assisting low-income victims could shift their focus to those precious few who are not able to get the most cutting edge product in time. The money simply cannot be covered by Federal RE. That does not mean another vehicle cannot be refocused, whether private or public, to assist in those few cases percentage-wise which require the latest cutting edge medications not charted as buy able.

III. Medical Treatment under Federal RE conditions

Medical treatment at this juncture is now available for all Americans, and in almost all cases their prescriptions are covered also. But now that we are prepared to fill up every clinic and major hospital with patients, how do we control the clinically insane costs of running that clinic or hospital? We can stave off socialized prescriptions via creating a powerful buyer in the market Through Federal RE, and having simple cost-overrun standards that are non-negotiable and consistent. But the clinics, hospitals, and emergency rooms didn’t get any cheaper. Since all Americans (at a minimum) are covered by the best type of major medical insurance money could previously buy, the billing systems and related bureaucracies are naturally streamlined over time. But sadly, medical charges have very little to do with the actual cost of a procedure, and everything to do with what the various hospital and clinical administrations CAN charge in each situation. If we govern the pricing of each procedure too closely, then we are mimicking the socialized policies of countries who we do not wish to be.

I would argue that the same way maximums were set in item #B above, a geographically mapped system to avoid over-charges could be applied. What constitutes an overcharge is again decided by committee at Federal RE in much the same way that pharmaceuticals are banned when costs are unreasonable to both the insurers and the government. Because 100% of the American population is insured with Basic (unless they foolishly “opt out”) the CUSTOMER is now the dual processors of Federal RE and the private insurance company involved in each case. If cost controls are unreasonable by today’s standards to any given clinic, the quality of health care will suffer tremendously when the operating units do not get to charge whatever they want, or whatever they used to feel an insurer will pay. But when medical organizations get 100% continuity in payments through a single-payer style system with few errant delays in the simplified processing, they will actually make far more money than they do now in the world of constant claim disputes, and zero consistency. The monitoring committee, as with the prescription committees, are comprised of qualified professionals at Federal RE who understand the true economics of a hospital or clinic. Severe overcharges that are way beyond scale cannot and will not be honored. Plenty of money will still be spent for procedures (especially at the onset when the system is brand new) but the whole key to controlling price is actually not price controls as the system matures…but rather the lower cost of running a hospital and clinic when the payments are made for services with lightening speed. That’s right..there is no reason to hold up funds under the new program once the services are provided. Medical billing will be a snap, and the incredible amounts of money spent on corrective systems can be lessened for each institution. Speed of payment to medical facilities is a major factor for overall success. So is having a fairly large and very intimate accounting system to track abuses. Frequent audits will replace much of the former aggravation of charging insurance companies, and will be a much more regular event at hospitals. A strong governmental role in auditing each facility regularly is actually a pillar of this plan, and will be gone in to more detail in later articles as to who and how this occurs, and how frequently.

The American dream is still a wonderful thing. We do not have to take away the profit motive from professionals who seek their fortune through honorable health industries, medical jobs, and insurance work. We simply need to define the rules of a new system that uses the age old insurance RULE OF LARGE NUMBERS to create a national group. The same talent required to be a preferred doctor, dentist, or insurance provider still exists in a more comprehensive form. State programs and the endless bureaucracy that encompasses them are eliminated and replaced by the new system. Welfare mothers and low-income households are fully sponsored for the coverage they really need, and the investments of Federal RE: over long period of time pay for most of the built-in deficiency. Hospitals, clinics, insurers, and drug companies all have to compete on the basis of quality and product provided instead of what HMO or PPO they belong to, or what “level of care” is minimally chosen. You will find that in practice it is an absolute fact that Federal RE will actually show a small profit when the smoke clears away, and medical care will improve through TRUE COMPETITION, not the bureaucratic version of it most of us suffer with today.

04. January 2017 · Comments Off on How and Where To Get Health Insurance for Low Income Individuals · Categories: Health Insurance

In the US, reading the statistics of Americans without their health insurance is startling. According to Huffington Post, this 2012, almost 50 million Americans are living without health plans. This is different from years ago. And why does this happen? This is because there are lots of Americans today that don’t have jobs or cannot find stable jobs that can let them have the luxury of paying for their health plans. In some families, paying for their home rent is even a problem. So, is it still possible to secure health insurance for low income families and individuals while in the midst of the crisis? Yes, it is still possible according to experts. We only need to know where to find it.

Health insurance for low income people are actually out there. Unfortunately, some of us know only few of them while other people don’t know how to tap them well. But as we have said, these resources are already here. So in this article we have gathered the most possible sources that we can tap to get almost the same benefits that low premium insurance plans can provide.

Below are the best possible options in place of securing health insurance for low income people.

  1. COBRA. This is the Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act. If you are out of job, you can try applying for COBRA and if you will be eligible you can continue your previous companies’ health insurance through this process. This is better than finding a new health insurance plan but there is a possibility that you may pay higher premium for it.
  2. Workers’ compensation. If you are employed and your job is risky, inquire from your employer if you are under the Workers’ Compensation program. You can have injury compensations if you get injured during your work.
  3. Medicaid. Even if you are employed, better apply for Medicaid especially if you belong to the low income bracket. Medicaid can help you pay your health care expenses or some of it if you can’t afford to pay for it. Medicaid exists through federal and state partnership and was designed to help low income families, disabled and old people with their medical expenses. You can also apply your family to Medicaid because this is an opportunity that your state provides to those who can’t afford paying for regular health insurance plans.
  4. Medicare. This is an option that comes from the government and being administered by the Social Security administration. If you are unemployed or don’t have a regular employment and with a family, you can try enrolling yourselves and your family to Medicare especially if you are getting Social Security benefits. For those who are sixty-five years old or even older, they are most eligible to be under the Medicare programs.
  5. State High Risk State Insurance Pools. All of us do have health problems sometimes and unfortunately when we have pre-existing medical conditions we are usually denied coverage by health insurance companies. If you are denied of such privilege and did not qualify for COBRA while getting health insurance for low income individuals can also be a problem, you can rely on high risk state insurance pools. You can inquire from your city administrators or community hospitals where you can apply for this option. You may still pay premium for the plan but at least this can answer your medical cost even you have pre-existing health conditions.
  6. Short Term Health Insurance Coverage. This is an appropriate option for low income individuals who don’t have regular jobs or just starting to work on their new jobs. This is much like individual insurance policies but in this option you will only be under the coverage for short period of time. You only pay low premium with this one and while you are at it you can find time examining the viability of this insurance company if this could be the right choice for your long-term insurance coverage.
  7. Group Health Insurance. If you are a member of an organization and without the health insurance, you can encourage your group to apply for a group insurance. With this type of insurance, you can choose from various insurance options how you want to be covered. The nice thing about being insured as a group is that you pay lower rates because your premium is scattered among your members. You may not get large benefit from it like what individual insurance plans can provide but at least you are also secured and have something to rely on. If you don’t have a group you can also search for organizations online that accept individuals for their group health insurance.
  8. Group Sharing On Health Expenses. Basically, this is not a type of health insurance for low income people but it is a logical option for those who want financial support during medical crisis. This system works in simple process. You form a group and pool your money and deposit this money to the bank so that you are your own insurance health group. When one of you needed the expenses due to health concerns, the money can be used to support the individual’s medical expenses and he pays when he can be able to work. Religious groups usually do this but this can only be viable if there lots of people who will provide contributions.

With all these given options, providing health insurance for low income individuals is always possible. If all of us would realize the things we can get from these options, we don’t need to worry so much anymore. Getting confined in the hospital or treated with serious injuries without the health insurance is simply unimaginable so the only thing that we can do four ourselves is to rely on these options which equate the benefits provided by health insurance for low income people.

29. December 2016 · Comments Off on Finance – Money, Money · Categories: Finance

Finance is a big word for some of us. It’s a little scary. Maybe you immediately go to thinking about “high finance.” That’s even scarier. But what is the field of finance really about? Money. Okay, so money can be a scary word, too, but it’s a little more manageable because we use it more often. In fact, money management is what finance is all about. It can also mean raising the money for something or lending money to someone on credit.

“Finance your dreams,” they say.

You read about people in ordinary jobs, with ordinary lives, who manage to save and invest their money so they can do the things they really love. There’s a whole book about that. Have you read “The Millionaire Next Door?” It’s a good book and it does give us ordinary people some inspiration about going for our dreams. You don’t have to become a millionaire, though to finance some of those dreams.

Think about it. What is it you’d really like to have money for?

Do you want to open a coffee shop? Self-publish your own book? Backpack in Egypt? Make jewelry and sell it at fairs? Paint?

Whatever your dream is, it’s do-able. Do the math. First you want to know about how much it’s going to cost to finance this dream of yours. That’s going to take a little research. Get on the web and look for information. Call people who have already done what you want to do and ask them out to lunch. Most of them will be happy and proud to tell you how they did it. You might even make a new friend.

You’re going to be surprised in many ways. First, it may not cost as much as you think to get started. Second, once you start thinking in new directions, new ideas on how to finance this dream will show up. Third, most of us could save quite a lot by putting a little bit of money aside from every paycheck. Even 5 percent adds up to a lot in just a year.

So what are you waiting for? An engraved invitation? Here it is “You are cordially invited to have fun financing your dreams!” Now get started!

23. December 2016 · Comments Off on Find the Lowest Car Insurance Prices · Categories: Car Insurance

Everyone wants the lowest car insurance rates. Insurance is a significant cost of modern life, getting the lowest car insurance price can give you a significant saving. Here are are few things to bear in mind in order to get the lowest car insurance prices.

1) The drivers.
At the time you are searching for the lowest car insurance, remember that the drivers of the car make a huge difference to the price of your insurance. Insuring young men is particularly expensive, since they are over-represented in crashes; if possible, do not permit young men to drive your car. Young men searching for insurance should consider which insurer best meets their needs. Another important aspect in finding the lowest insurance prices is the history of the drivers on your insurance policy. If drivers have been involved in accidents, or have been charged with traffic offenses, they will be more expensive to insure. When you are looking for the lowest car insurance estimates, minimize the number of expensive drivers you need to insure.

2) The car.
Your car is one variable which greatly changes the cost of your insurance. Let me illustrate: When buying my second car, I had a $10,000 budget. I found two cars in that price range: a plain, fairly young small car from a reputable maker, and a slightly older, but much sportier version of the same car. After driving each, I’d made up my mind- that sporty one was fantastic! After calling my insurance company, it was a different story. The cost of insuring the sporty version would have been half it’s value – I could buy a new car every two years with what I would have had to pay for insuring that car. I went back to the dealership, purchased the sensible car, and kept the money in my pocket. Searching for the lowest insurance means bearing in mind that your car makes a huge difference to the cost of insurance. Sports cars are particularly costly to insure. If you have some kind of sports car, consider insurers who specialise in these types of vehicles. It could be better, though, to buy a car which is cheaper to buy in the first place.

3) Usage.
Many car insurance companies are seeing more thorough information about the way the cars they are insuring will be insured. Some insurers give discounts to drivers who drive less frequently, by electing a ‘pay as you drive’ policy. Asking insurers if they consider the usage of the vehicle can give you the lowest car insurance rate.

4) The location.
Lastly, a key factor in the price of car insurance is the location the car will be kept. The cost of insurance is relative to the crime and accident rates in your area. Keep the cost of insurance in mind when choosing a neighbourhood. If you reduce the insurer’s risk, and your own, in all of these four areas, you will get the lowest car insurance rates.

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