Why did I get in the Insurance Business?

Lately, several people have asked me why I decided pursue the life insurance business considering the fact that there are already so many people doing it. After getting this question so many times, I’ve decided to finally prepare a written response.

The Market. The market for life insurance is huge. While no one likes to talk about dying, I have yet to meet someone who did not want to leave a legacy for their family, a cause they believe or just cover the cost of their own funeral so they aren’t a burden on their family. It is common knowledge that insurance is the least expensive way to accomplish these goals.

However, given this general fact, studies show that more than 68 million Americans do not have life insurance or are underinsured. I’m willing to bet this number is much higher. Furthermore what may not be so obvious is the fact that life insurance can be used for more than just a death benefit.

An insurance representative that really understands this, can position you to maximize insurance policies throughout your life. You may use insurance policies to reduce or eliminate taxes, protect assets from creditors and lawsuits, as well as to help you form your own bank.

My personality. In enjoy the insurance business because it allows me to be creative in my approach to helping others help themselves. My undergraduate degree is in business and my Masters is in Human Relations. While I kind of fell into both of these degree programs, the financial advisory business just seems to naturally fit my background and personality. I have a unique understanding of money and business, I listen well, understand how people make decisions, and I love coaching and assisting them create the results they deserve.

The lifestyle. I love the lifestyle the insurance business affords me. Why? Because it is full of choice. Moreover, since I work out of an independent agency, I have even more options and latitude. I have the flexibility to make my own schedule, work with clients I like, choose my level of income and choose the companies I represent. Best of all, I am always learning. Many major insures pay for independent reps to travel and attend trainings across the country in order to stay current. These trips are always educational and fun.

Top 10 Reasons You Shouldn’t Buy Life Insurance

10. You don’t want your spouse to spend the death benefit on their new playmate after you expire

9. You think death is only for “old people”

8. You don’t think you can afford it today so your plan is to wait until you’re old or have medical problems so it can be more expensive tomorrow.

7. You’re a big time investor and don’t like the idea of using a little money now to get a lot of money later because you won’t be around to spend it

6. You never benefited from a charity, foundation, institute, or religious organization and don’t think they deserve to use “your money” on other people when you’re gone

5. You’ve made millions and think it would be cool to watch from the “other side” as your family conducts an estate sale in your honor to pay the 45% death tax

4. You think too much money will ruin your kids and teach them to despise the very “hard work” that helped kill you

3. You actually think other people want to wash cars, put on bake sales, and collect donations to pay for your funeral

2. You’re a selfish angry bastard and have no intention of leaving a legacy for anyone

1. You’ve worked your whole life and have nothing to show for it

If you live in Arizona and none of these reasons represent you visit Barca Financial Group

Who Needs Final Expense Insurance?


Can you imagine the number of commercials, and advertisements you’ve seen about insurance over your lifetime? Now think about the number of times you’ve actually talked to an insurance representative specifically about insuring your life and protecting your family.

You could probably count the number of times on one hand. When you decided to have this often dreaded conversation, maybe you decided to make a purchase or maybe you didn’t. If you purchased life insurance early on and let it lapse or didn’t buy any at all, its quite possible that if you’re older or have health issues you will not be able to purchase term or permanent insurance which normally pays larger death benefits to your loved ones.

If you’re mature in age (50+), fall into the aforementioned category, and you do not want to be a burden on your loved ones…then Final Expense Insurance is the way to go.

It is more flexible than burial insurance coverage which is limited only to burial expenses, it gives survivors freedom to apply the policy benefit to medical debts, legal costs, or other expenses as they see fit. Additional, Final Expense insurance is guaranteed to age 100.

The average funeral cost between $8 – 12,000 and must be planned in less than a week. While this is not the most pleasurable topic, it is important to decide how your family will pay for these expenses.
Final Expense Insurance is Guaranteed

2 Types Final Expense Policies

Guaranteed Issue final expense insurance policies will NOT turn you down – everyone 50 to 80 years of age who applies will be covered – no medical questions asked and no medical exam needed. The downside to guaranteed issue coverage: first your costs will be higher because the risk to the insurer, your health, is an unknown, and second the policy’s face value benefits at death may not be payable immediately.

Most policies that guarantee issue require a vesting period of up to 3 years during which full benefits will not be paid. Should you pass before the vesting period is over the policy will only return the premiums already paid in, most often with interest added.

Simplified issue policies do ask questions about your physical condition but they are primarily written for mature adults with a decent bill of health .

The monthly premiums for simplified issue policies are lower than the “guaranteed” policies and full face value benefits are payable right away.

Bottom line: If you are over 50 and are no longer able to purchase term or permanent insurance. You should consider Final Expense insurance. A simplified issue policy would be the best deal if you can qualify and be covered immediately.

Learn more at www.barcafinancial.com

Get Ready for Life Insurance Awareness Month

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The month of September will mark the beginning of Life Insurance Awareness Month. Life insurance awareness month is actually and educational campaign designed to encourage consumers to review their life insurance needs in order to ensure that their loved ones are protected. In my next several blogs we will discuss various aspects about life insurance so that you really “get it.”

According the LIFE Foundation, a consumer-focused non-profit designed to educate consumer about various insurance products, 3 in 10 adult Americans have no life insurance and most with coverage need more than they presently have.

In families where the primary bread winner passes without being covered by life insurance, many financial hardships can be expected for the family.

Some of the expenses that will need to be paid at the time of dealth may include a funeral ($10,000), death taxes (45% of assets unless a trust or some other protective measure has been implemented), day’s of lost income due to grief, debt, mortgage, etc.

The bottom line is that death can be more expensive than living. It is important that we all plan for this time.

Visit www.lifehappens.org for further information about Life Insurance awareness month.

How to choose a Mortgage Loan Modification Company (Part 6)

Be cautions about phone and email solicitations from loan modification companies

In case you guys haven’t already figured out loan modifications can be big business for those that can make it happen.

When I say “make it happen” I’m speaking of marketing or persuasively attracting customers.

“The best marketer will always win.”

Selling a loan modification is no different than someone selling you a checking account.

If you’re thinking “You mean to tell me that I’m being sold a checking account, but I need it don’t I” you’re not alone.

I didn’t realize the bank was doing a sales job on me either until I got a job at a one…and boy are they good. Not that banks are not a good idea but we’ve been conviced that we actually “need” on like we need air.

Being sold by a bank can be hard to spot but every “free” feature you sign up for is really a sale.

Believe it or not, there is a transaction taking place. You’re giving the bank your money and they are providing the service of “watching it” for you.

Now as a banker my job was to convince you that our bank could “keep an eye on your money” better than you could, the banker down the street or the bed bugs under your mattress. Was this 100% true? Maybe, maybe not

Never-the-less, this my friends is banking sales 101. Sounds crazy if you really think about it? I digress…

Getting back to the point of this post…Just because you “need” a loan modification doesn’t mean you should act desperate and respond to any flashy piece of adverting that comes your way.

I’m not saying that everyone that voiceblast you a phone call or sends you and e-mail is bad. Just know that many of these companies are marketers first and self-proclaimed loan modification gurus second.

With that in mind make sure you choose wisely. Do your research and most importantly follow you gut. If the person you’re dealing with doesn’t sit well with you choose someone else.

How to Choose a Mortgage Loan Modificaton Company (Part 5)

Be mindful of loan modification companies that tell you to stop paying your mortgage.

Ok, I’ve heard this one a lot and there is a lot of truth to banks only wanting to work with you if you are 3 months behind on your mortgage. Banks do this not to ruin your credit for not paying them back, but as a part of a system to prioritize which loans get modified first. Loans that have not been paid for more than three months recieve the most immediate attention.

Before I go any further, let me say up front I am in no way suggesting you not pay your mortgage but if you really need the banks attention, there is a way to do with out destroying your credit.

When you pay your mortgage, if you pay after the grace period (usually the 15th) but before the end of 30 days your banks will simply make an annotation on your account.

However, if you pay after 30 days the credit bureau will be notified. The key here is not to be more than 30 day’s late.

So if you really must get the banks attention, I’ve heard of many people paying between the 16th and the 29th day of the month for 3 months consecutively, and then contacting the bank about a loan modification.

How to choose at Mortgage Loan Modification (Part 4)

Find loan modification companies that thoroughly explain the loan modification process.

There are several companies that will tell you just how unstoppable they are when it comes to loan modifications. However, it is vital that you understand exactly what you are paying for.

There are a couple of techniques out there that are usually lumped together and called a loan modification. However, these techniques are quite different and vary in difficulty. So make sure you’ve got someone experienced working for you.

The first technique is actually a loan modification (i.e. you or a company works with your lender to reduce the interest rate and monthly payment on your loan.

Another technique is called a “short pay.” That’s right, short pay not short sale. Under this strategy the bank actually reduces the loan amount, the payment, and the interest rate (Hint: This is the more difficult of the two).

For example, you have a $250K loan, a monthly payment of $2500 and an interest rate of 7%. You get laid off and can’t make your payments.

Some firms can actually get the bank to reduce your loan amount to lets say $150K, reduce the payments to $1200, and your interest rate to 4%. I’ve actually seen a similar scenario happen a couple of times.

These are the 2 main techniques I know of, but I’m sure there are others. The bottom line here is to please understand what you’re paying for.

I’ve heard several stories about people, who have written checks to someone for something, and they don’t know exactly what or why…and then of course, nothing happens. From my military days I’d say this is UNSAT or unsatisfactory.

Hopefully these 2 techniques will clear things up about what’s you’re actually supposed to be paying for.

How to choose a Mortgage Loan Modification Company (Part 3)

Check loan modification companies with the Better Business Bureau.

Whenever you do business with a company that is offering a high ticket item it is always a good idea to check them out with the BBB.

However, this does not guarantee that the company you’re dealing with is going to “do the right thing.”

What most people don’t realize is that the BBB is a fee-based organization, no different than your local chamber of commerce. (I actually applied for a BBB sales position one time – that’s how I know)

While the BBB does expect its members to hold themselves to a higher standard and will punish members who don’t adhere to these standards by allowing consumers to post complaints, they are in no way the “business police.”

If you find a mortgage loan modification company that is listed with the BBB good on them. However, I wouldn’t expect to find this often simply because the industry is so new.

Your best bet is to talk to past clients of the company you’re looking at working with, contact your Secretary of State and/or your state department of Real Estate to ensure there are no complaints lodged against the people you’re looking at working with.

You could really go all out and do background checks online but if you feel you need to go this far your gut is probably telling you not to do business with the slickster you’re working with in the first place.

Trusting your gut, intuition, higher-self, god consciousness, holy spirit etc… is probably the best advice I can give.

How to Choose a Loan Modification Company (Part 2)

Only work with loan modification companies that have reasonable fees and offer a money back guarantee.

Before getting a loan modification do your research, get recommendations and shop at least 3 vendors. Loan mods can range from $1000 to $6000.

The sweet spot is around $2000. While loan modifications can be quite time consuming and labor intensive, I would be very cautious of any organization that charges more than $2000.

Attorneys that are in the loan mod business often try to scare you into using their service and suggest that you should pay them more because they have a law degree and “have leverage” with the banks.

Nothing against attorneys but this is simply not always the case. There are several mom and pop shops usually, ex-loan officers that can do a good job. However, you want to make sure you thoroughly check out the organization you plan on working with.

Finally, the organization you choose should offer some form of money back guarantee.

Some organizations may require a nominal upfront deposit to cover labor cost, however, if you do not get satisfactory results the company should give most if not all of your money back.

How to Choose a Loan Modification Company (Part 1)

While banks have had loss mitigation departments for years, the loan modification business is a fairly new animal. This industry has come out of the credit and housing crisis and is worth millions if not billions of dollars.

When done properly (i.e with a reputable company that doesn’t rip you off) loan mods can reduce your debt and provide a great deal of savings for you and your family. If you work with a dishonest company it could cost you thousands.

In my next several blogs I will provide tips on how to find a reputable loan modification company. In the meantime Listen to to what Mr Geithner had to say back in April 2009.

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