How to Purchase a Used Automobile: Tips From the Auto Insurance Guys

These days, purchasing a new car requires a lot of money. For those looking for another option due to the financial output, shopping for a used car may be a good bet. Of course, a previously owned car, no matter how sleek and shiny may have hidden disadvantages.

Below find tips from some finely-tuned insurance professionals on how to go about the task of shopping for a used car.

8 Ways to Get a Good Deal on a Previously-Owned Car

• Decide How Much You Can Spend on the Purchase
Prior to shopping around for a good used car, do a personal financial tally. Then focus only on buys you can afford – whether via financing or full payment method.

• Choose the Right Kind of Vehicle
Unmarried people without kids do not need a big car. On the other side of the coin, married individuals with children in tow could use a larger car. Recreational drivers, long-distance drivers and city or highway drivers have different needs as well. Assess your individual requirements, then shop for the car that matches them.

• Check Out Prices and Repair Frequency
Look online to determine what you should be paying for car makes and models according to year and usage. This search will also let you know what type of vehicles requires less maintenance work and what type has less mechanical headaches.

• Learn about the Car's Past
Research a particular car's history by putting in the Vehicle Information Numbers. This will get you to a full report about past collisions, owners and even recorded maintenance and repair jobs.

• Test the Car out by Taking it for a Spin
Drive your prospective car purchase over a calculated route that includes hills, bumps, curves and highway maneuvering. This way, you'll get an idea how the overall driving ability is.

• Get a Professional Mechanic's Opinion
Enlist your favorite mechanic in the decision by hiring him or her to inspect the car for surface problems that a layman like you may not be able to detect.

• Use Your Price-Negotiating Skills
Utilize the knowledge you have gained from all your research on the car to negotiate a price that fairly reflects its true value.

And Last But Surely Not Least

• Do not Forget About Auto Insurance
Before completing the buying process, speak to an experienced independent insurance agent about insurance for the vehicle. After binding the policy, sign the contract, pay, and you are good to go. No worries about the possibility of no coverage on the road to home!

Now that you have a new (used) automobile take care of it with good maintenance practices and remember to keep driving safety a priority.

Happy driving!



Source by M Wyzanski

Pay-As-You-Drive Personal Auto Insurance – Recent Developments

California private auto was changed forever in 1988 with the passage of Proposition 103. Among other things the regulations provided that insurance companies must accept all good drivers (as defined by them) and rate auto on 3 primary factors: Driving Safety, Annual Mileage, and Years Driving (rather than age of driver).

Later some 40 other factors would have accepted onto a list of other permitted secondary factors, although insurance score is not one of them. Territories were abolished in factor of some statistically-built bands related to accident frequency and other factors. Occasionally, even the number and differentials between bands would be narrowed.

The effect of the original regulation and the consequential changes was to cause or increase subsidies for a variety of policyholders:

  • Drivers with accidents subsidize good drivers
  • Long annual mileage drivers subsidize short annual mileage drivers
  • Urban drivers subsidize rural drivers
  • Nearly everyone subsidizes low experienced male drivers

The existence of these subsidies causes shortages in the marketplace and influences behavior that may not be desirable. For example, if drivers with accidents pay too much overall, this may cause an incentive to under report accidents. Less data is usually not good – the absence of accidents in the database will extremely raise rates for the next lower level of accident-proneness, as the higher risk drivers seem to belong in the lower accident group based on their statistics.

Other effects of forced subsidies are the introduction of new companies that are specialists in the over-priced segment of the market, increases in the number of drivers in the temporary market, and rate increases for truly good risks.

Pay-as-you-drive insurance:

It is the limited number of categories for annual miles driven that catches the attention of regulators and others wanting a more refined rating plan. Number of miles driven looks like a reasonable way to measure exposure and is easily understood by policyholders. Presumably in combination with "where you drive" (territory, that is. Although this is not "where you drive", it's "where you LIVE"), it would seem to cover a driver's exposure very well (see next section for what research shows).

The new proposed regulation is being touted as a "green" provision, encouraging drivers to drive less by having their insurance coverage apply by mile driven. California Insurance Commissioner Steve Poizner has proposed this optional rating mechanism, allowing insurers to offer a voluntary option for consumers who are interested in pay-as-you-drive coverage.

Consumer groups are opposed, saying that there is not enough protections in the law for protecting the privacy of insured's everyday activities. Some tracking mechanisms include "OnStar" satellite and GPS-based meters similar to those used in cell phones.

Quoting from the article:

"The Environmental Defense Fund estimates that if 30% of Californians participate in this voluntary coverage, California could avoid 55 million tons of CO2 between 2009 and 2020, which is the equivalent of taking 10 million cars off the road. This would save 5.5 billion gallons of gasoline and save Californians $ 40 billion dollars in car-related expenses. Additionally, the California Air Resources Board has recommended the adoption of pay as you drive as one of the means to meet future climate change gas reduction targets. "

Hard to ignore potential emissions reductions like these numbers.

b> But the research shows:

The research shows that pay-as-you-drive insurance may not get at the true exposure to auto insurance claims for each insured. For liability coverages, age / gender combination, along with insurance score and geography are the largest claim level predictors. For property damage coverage, the model of the car takes over as the number on predictor (the others then follow). This information is from a research paper The Relationship of Credit-Based Insurance Scores to Private Passenger Automobile Insurance Loss Propensity, Michael Miller, FCAS and Richard Smith, FCAS, Epic Actuaries, June 2003.

Pros / Cons of Pay-As-You-Drive:
Pros:

  • Exposure for insurance tied to miles driven – easy to understand by drivers
  • The amount you pay for insurance would be directly controlled by the driver, rather than on factors such as sex, age, martial status, etc. that the driver has no control over.
  • The current proposal is for an optional credit, giving low mileage drivers a choice.
  • Reduced emissions

Cons:

  • The amount a driver pays should be as closely tied to his / her exposure to loss as possible, to avoid cross-subsidies and comply with Actuarial Standards and Principles.
  • Tracking mileage is difficult and some methods proposed inspire fear of lack of privacy in some consumers and consumer watchdog groups.

My opinion is that there are better, less complicated ways to refine the rating plan options when it comes to annual mileage, and still emissions lower emissions and "green" policies. One obvious one is to simply increase the number of mileage bands in the current plans and offer "green" discounts (and debits) based on the type of vehicle covered. Discounts for Prius's, debits for Hummers.



Source by Kimberley Ward

20 Reasons To Lease Equipment

There are numerous benefits of leasing, a method of financing equipment which has been popular for many years. It provides some very unique benefits over conventional bank financing or an outright purchase, and here are 20 reasons to lease equipment.

1. Pay As You Use

Leasing highlights the utility value of the equipment. In other words, leasing provides the opportunity to pay for equipment as it is generating revenue for the company. No different than paying employees bi-weekly or monthly as opposed to pre-paying them for the next 2 or 3 years of work. Both are assets of the company, and it makes no sense to pre-pay for either.

2. Payments Are Fixed

In most cases, lease payments are fixed for the duration of the term. This has a major advantage over conventional bank loans or purchases from a credit where the interest rate are commonly based on a floating rate. Knowing in advance what the payments will be, facilitates ease of budgeting and reduces interest rate risk.

3. Longer Terms / Lower Payments

Many banking institutions will limit the term of a loan to 12or 24 months, at which time the rate and terms of the loan are re-negotiated. Based on the useful life of the equipment being leased, it is not uncommon the see fixed lease terms as long as 48 or 60 months. This in effect lowers the monthly payment at a fixed rate.

4. Obsolescence Protection

In this era of major technological advances, certain types of equipment purchased today, can be obsolete within one or two years. Most leases offer a provision to economically upgrade equipment within the last year of the lease contract thus giving the company a built in obsolescence protection. In addition, although the leasing company holds title to the equipment, the will generally allow the vendor to provide a trade in on the existing equipment.

5. No Down Payment

Conventional banking institutions will generally require a down payment of 10%-25% in order to undertake financing on most equipment. In a lease transaction, the entire amount is financed with only the first or first and last payment being required at the time of lease inception. In some cases where the financial strength of the company is not sufficient to support the amount being leased, a small down payment may be required.

6. 100% Financing

Traditional financing methods will frequently not allow soft costs such as installation, freight, maintenance, and software to be included in the loan. These must be paid directly out of working capital. A lease, on the other hand, will allow soft costs to be included, thus conserving working capital and allowing for a single monthly payment for the entire acquisition.

7. Fast And Easy

Depending on the dollar amount of the acquisition, a traditional loan may take many days and require approvals from higher levels within the financial institution. This can mean delays in getting the order placed for the much needed equipment. The credit process for a lease acquisition is generally much faster and can be as quickly as a few hours up to a couple of days. Again depending on the size of the acquisition.

8. Creativity And Flexibility

Banks are typically known for their creativity and flexibility. The are bound by the Bank Act which limits some of the things they can do to assist their client base. Leasing, on the other hand has evolved into a method of financing which focuses on the specific requirements of the client. Payments can be structured to accommodate irregular revenue streams during the year or set up to match payback on a piece of equipment that has a quantifiable monthly savings. Leasing is the ultimate form of creative financing.

9. Purchase And Renewal Options

At one time leases were structured in such a way that the only purchase option available was the Fair Market Value of the equipment determined at the end of the lease term. Over the years, the market has made it clear that they want a better define purchase price set out at the inception of the lease. As a result, most leasing companies will set a mutually agreed upon end of term purchase price at the outset of the lease. This can range from $1.00 to 25% and is often reflected in the monthly payment. In addition, the purchase option can again refinanced under a new lease contract generally over a 12 to 24 month term.

10. Conservation of Working Capital

In a recent industry survey, the number one reason for leasing equipment was conversation of working capital. By using lease financing, working capital is freed up to be used in the day to day operation of the business for things such as purchasing inventory, advertising, trade shows, and hiring employees. Essentially, leasing allows a company to reduce the amount invested in a depreciating asset, and use the money where it will generate a higher return.

11. Simplified Forecasting

Lease payments show up as an expense on the company income statement. Because payments are fixed and pre-determined at the outset of the lease, companies are able to intelligently forecast and budget into the future.

12. Capital Budgets To Operating Budgets

Within large organizations, capital acquisitions generally require a higher level of approval than operating expenses, and as a result take more time. A lease acquisition, being a monthly expense, will generally fall within an operating budget affording managers within various departments or business units to approve acquisitions of much needed equipment.

13. Tax Benefits

Because lease payments are treated as an expense on the income statement, the payments can generally be written off. Because each company has unique financial circumstances, and accounting firms which differ on the accounting treatment of a lease, it is suggested that the accounting firm be consulted prior to making a decision to lease on the sole basis of tax advantages.

14. Low Interest / No Interest Programs

From time to time vendors of equipment will offer time sensitive low or no interest marketing programs to help them sell slow moving inventory. It is prudent to watch for these types of programs or ask the vendor if they have any leasing incentives available.

15. Master Lease Agreements

A Master Lease Agreement is simply a document which contains all of the terms and conditions of the lease and is signed once and covers all future lease acquisitions. Generally a lease line of credit is pre-approved for a dollar amount which will accommodate anticipated acquisitions over a period of time. As equipment is acquired, a simple one page document is signed. This saves time and is effective in an expansion or a major project.

16. Preserve Bank Credit Lines

No company wants to be operating at the top of their credit line and are often reluctant to approach the bank for a credit line increase. It is prudent business practice to have funds available for unexpected events-a slow month or quarter, unpaid receivables, or an unexpected damage claim. The use of leasing creates a new credit facility without any effect on the banking relationship.

17. Hedge Against Inflation

Leasing allows for payment of in dollars, and in turn pay those costs incrementally in inflated future dollars, as the equipment is used.

18. Competitive Edge

Staying ahead of the competition often requires the latest and best technology. Leasing equipment lets you do the job more efficiently, more effectively, and more economically. In addition it provides the advantage of continually upgrading to latest available technology at a reasonable cost.

19. Sale And Leaseback

A Sale & Leaseback is a specialized lease transaction where the leasing company will purchase unencumbered equipment, at a fair market price from a company, and lease it back to them. It is a tremendous way of freeing up capital which is tied up in depreciated assets.

20. Enhanced Corporate Image

The vehicles in the fleet and the equipment in the production, all have an effect on the corporate image. Leasing allows assets to look new, fresh, and and create the image of a successful company.

In summary, leasing came about as a means to acquire equipment and it is no wonder that many equipment manufacturers have set up their ow leasing arms to help their customers acquire products in the most effective way. Leasing just make good business sense.



Source by Kelvin Johnstone

What Your Small Health Care Business Needs to Know About Insurance

Are you a small health care business? Every small business entity understands that risk exposure is part and parcel to putting up shop, but those in the health care fields know it on a larger scale. Lawsuits in regard to professional liability and general or what other is known as property liability are but one of the hazards to understand and acquire tailor protection from.

Other forms of coverage that may be necessary include:

• Workers compensation
• Umbrella as well as Excess Liability Insurance
• Management Liability Insurance

Working together with an independent insurance agency that deals with many of the top carriers who have strong financial backing and operate in the country and abroad is one way to zero in on appropriate coverage.

Doing so will also give you the opportunity to purchase a package business owners insurance plan that groups various shielding pieces of coverage together to get you optimum protection at a significantly discounted premium.

Underscoring all of the above of course is the wonderful sense of peace of mind that comes along with insurance coverage – peace of mind that allows you to concentrate on running your small medical business without the intrinsic worry of all things risky.

What type of small healthcare business can avail itself to insurance specifically designed with the industry's needs in the forefront?

The following related businesses can find tailor coverage that is so necessary to the field:

• Medical offices
• Clinics
• Imaging centers hubs
• Physical therapy and rehab centers
• Medical and dental labs
• Dentists

If you are part of any of these specific health care enterprises, you may be an eligible insurance class:

• Acupuncture professional
• Ambulatory surgery center
• Cardiac lab
• Chiropractic doctor
• Community health center
• Convenience care clinic
• Dentists' office
• Dialysis treatment centers
• Employee or occupational health clinic
• Health practitioners' offices
Hyperbaric oxygen therapy
• Lithostripsy Center
• Medical spa
• Mental health and substance abuse outpatient center
• Nurse practitioner clinician
• Optometrists' offices
• Oral surgeon office
• Pain management center
• Physical, physiotherapist and occupational therapists
• Podiatrists' offices
• Psychiatrists
• Psychologists
• Rehab, cardiac, outpatient facilities
• Sleep centers
• Smoking clinics
• Speech therapy offices
• Student health centers
• Vascular access center
• Weight loss center, nonsurgical weight loss clinics
• X-ray, radiology or imaging labs

To be sure, any related industry should first consult with an experienced independent agent before assuming they will be accepted for coverage. In addition, speaking with a knowledgeable indemnity professional will help him or her in understanding your needs while giving you a precious the opportunity to learn more about the coverage you require as well as the options out there.



Source by M Wyzanski

Review Of Infinity Auto Insurance Products And Services For US Motorists

The actual Infinity auto insurance provider started in 1955 as the Dixie Insurance Company. Infinity Insurance has evolved drastically since then, and right now has 1900 staff members as well as has clients in 43 Us states.

Benefits Infinity Insurance

Infinity offers lower cost auto insurance to a wide variety of car owners. More mature as well as more youthful motorists benefit from some large rate reductions. Infinity's three different policy categories allow drivers with clean driving records and people with previous violations acquire cheaper insurance. The Infinity insurance firm is financially stable and has an 'A' rating from the insurance company rating agency, AM Best. This gives customers peace of mind, simply because they know they're covered through a business with a fantastic reputation.

Types of Auto Coverage

There are three main forms of car coverage obtainable. These types of categories include Infinity Premier, Value-Added coverage and Low-cost policies.

Infinity Premier Insurance coverage – This kind of coverage is for individuals with a clean driving record, and would prefer greater limits and extra coverage. Comprehensive and collision coverage cost you less if you're an Infinity Premier consumer.

Value Added Coverage – This insurance coverage is designed for individuals who would like insurance, but do not have clean driving history. Regardless of any kind of violations you may have gotten on your own driving record, Value Added policies do not prevent you from acquiring some of the advantages offered in the Infinity Premier products and services, and it's still able to get reasonably priced insurance coverage.

Low Cost Protection – This sort of insurance coverage is great for car owners with transgressions on their own driving record, but would wish to receive less cost car insurance. The low-cost option is the most straightforward coverage provided and is suitable for car owners who would like to drive lawfully, for a lower price.

Infinity Insurance Special discounts

Infinity motor insurance offer clients a selection of solutions to help save more on their promotions. When you cover more than one car, you can cut your insurance coverage amount by as much as 27%.

A cautious car owner gets rewarded by Infinity. When you display evidence of this, you may save as much as 25% for your own insurance premium. If safe car owners renew their insurance coverage with Infinity, will also obtain an additional reduction of 8%.

Young and also more mature motorists also benefit through discount rates from Infinity auto insurance. College students can easily save as much as 10% on their insurance premium, simply by obtaining good grades. More mature drivers that have completed a mature driver course also obtain special discounts. Quite a few customers choose to pay their insurance premium up front. When you choose to do this, it is possible to get a discount on your insurance premium by making a full payment.

Receiving a quote from Infinity

It is simple to get in touch with Infinity concerned a quote by phoning their customer support desk, via their brokers or via their web site. This kind of information is accessible on the Infinity web site, and they also have 24/7 customer service.

Customer Satisfaction and accolades

During an independent investigation of insurance companies, Verizon found that Infinity Insurance has been 'one of the most available, easy-to-reach, and friendly car insurance companies to call. They also have recently opened up a huge 325 seat call center in The state of Texas, which caters for customer service and claims, for English and Spanish speaking consumers.

Infinity Job opportunities

Infinity Insurance have built up a culture of teamwork and believe that their very best asset is their personnel. Customer care, claims personnel, IT, business development, marketing and advertising, accounting and finance are the primary career options offered on the Infinity auto insurance internet site.



Source by Brad Mamnya