Annual Report

The current White House’s administration also has been trying to simplify it all for borrowers with loans backed

Borrowers can expect savings, but the banks aren’t required to give them today’s rock-bottom rates. Under the settlement, the new rate must be at least 0.25 percentage point

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How Do Medical Insurance Companies Make Their Money

How Do Medical Insurance Companies Make Their Money

If you are someone that is unfortunate enough to live in a country that doesn’t offer free healthcare to all of its citizens, then you are probably familiar with the world of medical insurance....

Understanding Money: How the Rich Stay Rich

Understanding Money: How the Rich Stay Rich

Many people are under the incorrect impression that once you’re rich you’ll be able to stay rich without doing much, this is not the case at all. Everyone knows how difficult it is to get rich if...

Examples and Case Studies

Examples and Case Studies

There are numerous examples of successful community currencies. Time Dollars whose purpose is to “reweave community” is a currency which is now applied in several hundred communities in the...

The Sufficiency of Money Game

The Sufficiency of Money Game

The game can be played with one or several people.  You can play it by yourself, with your family or a group of friends or strangers.   Imagine for the duration of the game that there is no...

Consumer Rights: What are the Rules and Regulations in the UK

Consumer rights are something that we all just expect to have when we should be celebrating that we have them as it’s only in the last 100 years that consumers have been given these rights and things used to be much different. Now there are plenty of rules and regulations in the UK that are in place to help protect any consumers from things such as scams. The UK followed the US’s lead when it came to consumer rights. Back in the 1960’s President J.F.Kennedy outlined what he thought consumer rights should be in a speech, this speech is widely remembered and March 15th, the anniversary of the speech, has become ‘World Consumer Rights Day which is widely celebrated. After seeing the popularity of these rights in the US the UK also committed to consumer rights in the 1960s. Since then, the rules and regulations have had to adapt to an ever-changing society and have become much more complex. Keep reading to find out what the rules and regulations in the UK are.

What are consumer rights?

As briefly mentioned consumer rights are relatively recent rights that protect any consumers when buying a product or a service. In the past things like this didn’t exist as there were no real means for quality check and no real framework in place to be able to handle things such as returns. Consumer rights are extremely important as without them if you were given a damaged item, the wrong item, an item of lower quality than advertised, a partial item, or a different item than what you paid for, there would be nothing that you could do about it as you’d have no rights. Say for example you purchase new broadband and you should always compare broadband deals before buying, but if you forget and purchase the wrong one, it is thanks to consumer rights that you can return and cancel it to purchase the one you prefer.

The Consumer Rights Act (2015)

The Consumer Rights Act is the most important and relevant consumer rights regulation in the UK. It highlights the standard that consumers expect when entering into a contract for a product or service, these are that of satisfactory quality, fit for purpose, and are as described. This act was a massive win for consumers as they now had additional protection against those providing the products/services. As most of you will know over time your consumer rights begin to change, it was this act that set out that within 30 days of purchase if you purchase something and it does not meet all 3 of the standards then you absolutely have the right to a refund. After 30 days this changes, you may ask for a refund but the person who sold you the product now does have the right to refuse this. Within 6 months you can still return an item that has had a fault since it was delivered, if the place you’re returning it to can’t prove that the fault wasn’t there when you received the item then you are entitled to a refund but after 6 months if you try this you will have to prove that the fault was always there to get a refund.

Online

Now more than ever people don’t actually go into shops to do their shopping but more people tend to order online as it’s quicker and more convenient. Luckily, there are rules about online purchases which are also laid out in the Consumer Rights Act. These state that if you purchase something online, so without seeing it in person, the Consumer Rights Act will cover this so your purchase will be held to the same standard as in shops. The period of time in which you have the right to a refund is different, it is from when you purchase the order till 14 days after you’ve received the delivery. If you’re ordering online there are some more rules around the purchase as it has to be delivered to you, The person shipping your item is responsible and the act again protects consumers, if you don’t receive the item you ordered within 30 days then you would be entitled to a full refund unless you agreed with the supplier that a later time frame was acceptable.

Digital Content

Digital content is another area that is covered by the 2015 Consumer Rights Act. Digital content is classed under the act of anything produced and supplied in digital forms, such as films and games. If digital content is faulty then you can request for it to be repaired, if it cannot be then you can ask for a price reduction and this can be up to 100% of the cost.

Recovering from Debt: 6 Tips to Get a Handle on your Financial Crisis

Cutting Down on Luxury Items

One of the best things to do when you find yourself in a financial crisis is to cut down on nonessential items that you are spending your money on, it may be hard at first but once you start to stop things that you are wasting money unnecessarily on you will find that the money you save adds up to a nice amount that can be spent on trying to get the rest of your finances and debt in order. It may not be a nice feeling having to cut down on luxury items but if it can help you to get your life back on track by reducing your debts then I’m sure the struggle will be absolute; ly worth it in the long run.

 

Increasing Your Work Hours

Another eBay to bring extra money in that could really help you to get a handle on your finances would be to try and get some extra hours at work, depending on your employment status and the type of job you may have it may differ slightly. However, you should be able to request overtime if it is available and you could speak to your bosses about the possibility of increasing your contracted hours to increase your overall income. Sourcing extra work can have a big change in your life as you will find yourself busier and more tired during your free time, however, if you truly are serious about reducing your debts and avoiding a financial crisis then I’m afraid you’re going to have to be prepared to work for it yourself and gradually improve your situation.

 

Consolidating Your Debt

If you are in a situation where you find yourself with multiple debts spread across a number of different things that you have bought on credit or finance then there may be a more beneficial solution available to you. Many people are in debt and this has resulted in the development of consolidation agencies that will offer big loans so that you can pay off any debts at once and owe your money to one company that offers small repayments made over a few years. This is a great way to improve your credit score and will put you in a  better situation as you are in agreement with an individual company rather than having multiple people charging you interest and demanding repayments, consolidating your debts allows you time to think and time to raise the extra money that you need which saves a lot of stress in the long run.

 

Selling Your Home

A more drastic step that should be taken as a last resort and only if you really need to would be to move out of your current home and downsize to smaller more affordable accommodations. Although being in a financial crisis is very stressful you have to be realistic with what you can afford, if it turns out that this includes your home then I’m afraid you are going to have to look at alternative living arrangements that are more within your budget. You should not be too hesitant because if you need to sell your house fast you will be competing against a lot of other sellers.

However, it is likely that you will be left with a significant sum after the sale, and using this money to pay off any debts could be a great decision to take off some of the pressure and stress. It may seem daunting but moving to a new home could be just what you need to give you a fresh start where you are in a more comfortable financial situation.

 

Looking For a Higher Paying Job

If you feel that a lot of your financial issues are coming from not having a large enough wage then I would definitely urge you to enquire into the process of getting a pay rise, if this is not something that is possible then you may want to think about look for another job that has a wage better suited to your lifestyle. There is no harm in looking around at what other positions are available in your area and by simply sending off a few applications you could find a better paying career in no time. The more jobs you have and more experience then the more life skills you are going to learn, as well as this is you are able to secure a higher wage you can put the extra money towards bettering your financial situation and getting rid of a portion of your debts.

 

Budgeting

When you have finally gotten yourself back on track in terms of knowing where you need to send your money and cutting down on the things you don’t really need to be spending on you should set up a weekly budget of how much you are going to spend each week to help you avoid getting into a mess again. Anyone who has been in debt before will tell you how much they try and avoid repeating history and setting up a budget is a great way to keep track of your spending habits as well as limiting yourself on things that you are spending a considerable amount of money on each week.

You can set up a budget either online or by simply writing down your income and dividing it between your weekly outgoings, within your budget, you should also set some money aside to be saved so that you have money to fall back on in an emergency.

How Do Medical Insurance Companies Make Their Money

If you are someone that is unfortunate enough to live in a country that doesn’t offer free healthcare to all of its citizens, then you are probably familiar with the world of medical insurance. Medical insurance gives you the opportunity to cover medical bills that you may not have thought possible to overcome. However, if you look into it, the money that you put into your medical insurance really doesn’t add up with the estimated costs of your injury or illness.

Though this may seem confusing, it makes sense if you think about it. After all, what would be the point of insurance if you were still paying the full cost of the surgeries that you have? This means that your medical insurance is covering the rest of your bills. However, this begs another question. If medical insurance companies are only taking in a margin of what the medical bills actually cost, but are still paying the bills, then how do the companies make money?

Though this may seem confusing, you only need to meet someone that works in medical insurance to know that most medical firms are making plenty. Working in insurance is an extremely desirable job due to just how much money some of the bigger players in the sector are able to make every year.

 

How do they make money?

Insurance companies face no struggles when it comes to making money and there are in fact two primary streams of revenue for most insurance companies out there. These are known as investment income and underwriting income, but in the complicated world of insurance, it can be a difficult task to differentiate the two. Worry not, we have done the work for you.

 

Underwriting Income

Underwriting income may be the most popular way of making money that you may be familiar with in the world of medical insurance. If you have a healthcare policy, then you will know that you have to pay a monthly insurance premium. This is basically the set cost that you have to pay in order to have your medical bills continuously covered.

Premiums differ depending on the plan that you selected when you first joined your insurance company, yours may be more or less than the average depending on how much money that you spend every year.  Unless you have an ongoing medical condition, it is unlikely that the insurance company will have to use your money to cover any medical costs for yourself and so this money is pooled. This pooled money is used in many ways. If you are under a medical firm then it is likely that your money will be pooled with others that haven’t required any medical attention that month. This money will be partly used to cover the medical bills of someone else under the same firm, but a lot of money will be leftover.

The law firm will use some of this remaining money for the general running of the business, and new laws mean that insurance firms need to spend at least 25% of their income on administrative costs, which are the costs for the general running of the business. So the profit for the business is assessed this way by adding up the premiums that are collected by the firm and taking away the costs of any expenses or claims that have been paid by the company.

 

Investment income

Something that you may not know about the world of business firms is that the money that isn’t spent on claims or other expenses is usually invested. They could leave the money as it is, but this usually means there is very little income left over. What the company chooses to invest the remaining money on really depends on a number of personal factors and insider knowledge that the firm owner may have. The usual ways in which this money is invested are through stocks and real estate as companies tend to try to avoid gambling the money that they make. This money is then given out as a wage.

 

Do the companies make a direct profit from customers?

As previously discussed, the money that you invest into your medical insurance usually never meets the overall costs. Because of this, it isn’t very common for medical insurance businesses to make a direct profit from customers, instead, they are required to use the money wisely.

 

Can you make a profit from medical insurance?

Though it is more common to work as a part of a firm, there is such a thing as independent brokers. These medical insurance brokers work independently and often charge higher premiums. These higher premiums mean that they are able to cover bigger medical bills, which makes them a favorable option for people who worry about medical issues.

If you want to get into the industry, it is actually relatively straightforward as all you need to do is find medical injury leads and work from there. If you need to purchase personal injury leads for sale there are plenty of online resources or independent companies that you can contact who will be happy to help you. However, there are certain laws you need to follow in order to run your business ethically. There are also a number of certifications that you need to earn in order to allow you to practice, but once you have that sorted out then you should be fine.

Understanding Money: How the Rich Stay Rich

Many people are under the incorrect impression that once you’re rich you’ll be able to stay rich without doing much, this is not the case at all. Everyone knows how difficult it is to get rich if you’re not born into a rich family. It involves a lot of hard work and more often than not, working hard isn’t enough to make you rich. If hard work was all it took to become rich then professions such as doctors and medical staff would be rich as they work round the clock. Becoming rich has a lot more to it, it involves taking lots of risks, including things like risky investments and it requires a lot of confidence when aiming for higher-level jobs with 6 figure salaries, etc. However, becoming rich is only half of the hard work, once you are rich there is a lot involved with holding onto that fortune. If you want to get rich and stay rich then a good way to figure out how to do this is by studying those who are already rich, seeing how they got to their position and what actions they’re making to stay rich. We’ve found some of the most common things rich people do to stay rich.

Pensions

Some people may wonder how the rich stay rich once they reach the age of retirement and they’re no longer earning a big salary. The reason the rich can manage to maintain their affluent lifestyle post-retirement is that they are smart with their earning and start to save for their retirement from when they’re young. This is a great way to make your money stretch further as if you make pension contributions to an occupational pension scheme then your employer usually matches all of a portion of your contribution, this is effectively increasing your savings. Even if you’re not rich you should be taking advantage of this and planning for your future and as a rule of thumb the earlier you start saving the better thanks to market gains and compounding.

Hire a Professional

There are many qualified people who the rich can afford to hire who provide them with the best advice on how to stay rich. Accountants, tax consultants, and wealth management firms are all great aides for helping the rich to stay rich as they’ll be aware of any sneaky ways to legally avoid tax and retain your earnings. Hiring an accountant is great for anyone who wants someone to look over their finances and provide them with advice, tax consultants are great for anyone who owns a business, and wealth management firms are more aimed at helping the ultra-rich, the best wealth management firms for the ultra rich usually have a team who specialize in different areas so they can provide you with the best advice.

Tax

The rich who manage to stay rich almost always have a decent knowledge of what taxes are paid for and what allowances and tax reliefs are available. Most people pay a basic rate of tax but the rich are liable to pay tax at a much higher rate, because of this they’ll always try to reduce their total tax payable a year. There are many ways in which they can do this, there are sometimes government incentives that can be taken advantage of for the rich who own their own company, such as tax breaks for hiring ex-convicts, they can transfer the ownership of assets to their spouse if their spouse pays the basic tax rate and there are many things that qualify for capital allowances that they will definitely be aware of and take into account when making decisions.

Source of Income

Many people get rich from working their way up to the top of a company where they’re paid a 6 figure salary, however, this leaves them in a vulnerable position as if they lose this job and are unable to find another one quickly then they may burn through their savings and be back at square one. The rich who stay rich tend to build several sources of income, their job is likely still their main source of income but to protect themselves they will have other income such as a side business or from buying stock in profitable companies and receiving dividends yearly.

Get Rich Quick Schemes

While many people find these schemes appealing, the rich would not stay rich if they started investing in schemes like these. These schemes are definite to avoid as they are rarely successful, the rich know that there is no shortcut to becoming rich. Instead of investing in schemes like these they’ll be more sensible and put their focus on diversification of assets.

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