Having a baby has given you a new perspective on life — including your finances. Suddenly, you’re not just worried about making it until the next paycheck. Instead, you’re thinking about things like how you can set your child up for the brightest future possible and how to care for your family if something happens to you.

Revisiting your financial plan during major life changes is always a smart move, and there’s no doubt that starting a family is a big change. Instead of just worrying about your finances, take these actions to set your family’s future up for success.

 

For all your insurance needs, contact Rhoads Insurance. Visit our site for quotes!

 

Enroll Your Baby in Health Insurance

Signing your child up for health insurance is one of the first financial matters to take care of after having a baby. Depending on your insurance provider, you’ll have 30 to 60 days to enroll your child in health coverage. You can enroll your child in an existing policy, change policies, or enroll in CHIP or Medicaid if you qualify.

 

Buy a Life Insurance Policy

Health insurance isn’t the only policy you need. Life insurance becomes important after you have kids because most couples couldn’t cover the costs of living including childcare on a single income. Life insurance keeps your family afloat if the worst happens, and buying it doesn’t have to be complicated. You can compare quotes online before talking with an agent, and if you want, you can even get a policy that skips the medical exam; neither simplified issue nor guaranteed issue life insurance policies require medical exams. However, if you’re in good health, you’ll probably save money with a medically underwritten policy.

 

Update Your Beneficiaries

As you get life insurance in order, think about the other accounts and policies you have. Have you updated beneficiaries since starting a family, or do you still have exes or your parents named on accounts? Update retirement accounts, insurance policies, and wills so they name your spouse or a trust as the beneficiary.

 

Upsize Your Emergency Fund

Insurance protects against big emergencies, but what about the little mishaps that throw a wrench in your finances? Whether it’s a broken-down car or a sick child keeping you out of work, it’s important to have a financial cushion for weathering all of life’s little emergencies. If you normally keep a three-month emergency fund, bump it up to six months now that you have a family. And if you don’t have an emergency fund at all, now is the time to start one!

 

Start an Educational Savings Account

It may feel strange thinking about college when your child is still a newborn, but it’s never too soon to start saving for your child’s future. Plus, education savings accounts aren’t only for college expenses. Depending on the type of account, you can use your savings for education expenses spanning from elementary school through college.

 

Make Sure Your Business Stays in Order

New parents who also run a business need to make sure they keep a close eye on operations, as time marches on regardless. For example, if you haven’t yet registered your business as an LLC, take some time to do so, as this will help protect your personal finances from your business’s finances in the event that something goes wrong. You can simplify the registration process by using a formation service like Zenbusiness.

It’s also very important to make those quarterly tax payments on time; this can help you avoid trouble come tax time, as the last thing you want is to stare down a larger-than-expected tax bill. Last but not least, devote some time every day to your business’s finances, which will help keep you abreast of what’s happening and what needs to be addressed.

 

Bonus: Plan for Charitable Giving

It’s not in the budget for every family, but if it is for yours, consider making charitable giving part of your family’s financial plan. Charitable giving is a wonderful way to help less privileged families and sets a great example for your children as well. Whether you give money or give time, your contributions make a big impact on the missions you serve.

It takes more than money to raise great kids, but that doesn’t mean finances aren’t important when starting a family. The steps you take today will impact your family’s financial well-being for years to come, so make sure you’re putting financial security at the top of your to-do list. When you make these financial moves a priority, you create a bright future for your growing family.

 

Image via Unsplash

Financial planning for parents is essential at every level. If you want to ensure that you have things under control, Rhoads Insurance Agency advises that you take a look at your current situation and see what needs to be changed. This way, you’ll develop the financial security for which your future self will be thankful.

 

Make Sure Your Budget is Accurate

If you’re like some people, you may have a general monthly budget that you keep in your head or scribbled in a book somewhere. That’s a good start, but that’s not enough to maintain good financial footing.

According to Payoff, a successful budget starts with knowing your expenses down to the last cent. This should include not only recurring monthly payments but also sporadic ones, like car insurance payments and registration fees. Make sure you account for your savings and debt payoffs as well. It can be difficult to get everything to come together on paper if you have a lot of information to juggle. In that case, consider using top-notch budgeting software that will bring everything together for you. Some programs even offer tracking features so you can see how much you’re saving or how much of your debt you’ve repaid.

 

Plan for Emergencies

When you’re dealing with financial planning, you can’t neglect your emergency fund. Traditionally, it’s advised that you have between three and six times your monthly income set aside for emergencies. Since that may seem overwhelming at first, Better Money Habits suggests tackling manageable saving tasks instead of focusing on the grand total. Even if it’s a small amount, it’s important to start saving and it’s recommended that you use automatic transfers so you have no excuses.

If you’re looking for ways to save so you can build your cushion faster, consider using discounts when you’re shopping. It can also be helpful to buy things second-hand as long as it’s safe to do that, and focus on reusing items whenever you can. You can also look into getting a life insurance plan that has cash value accumulation, which can be used in emergencies and to help pay for your child’s college education.

 

Plan for the Future

As you’re putting your financial plan into action, make sure you’re thinking about your future as well. This is where estate planning comes into play. When you have a plan in place, it will ensure that your assets are handled as you wish and any children under 18 have an appointed guardian.

Another must-have is life insurance, as the funds from the policy will cover expenses generated by your passing or if you’re incapacitated. Term life insurance, in particular, can be very helpful as it guarantees a set death benefit after a certain amount of time. The good thing about these policies is that they tend to be fairly inexpensive, especially for those in good health. The funds from a term life policy can be used to cover things like unpaid bills, lost income, and funeral expenses. You may also consider looking into life insurance with living benefits, which means that you would receive the death benefit before your passing if you become chronically or critically ill.

 

Re-Invest In Your Future by Heading Back to School

Although the idea of going back to school might be scary, there are numerous benefits to seeking out higher education to establish a better future for your family. For example, an MBA can be an extremely useful tool to help you achieve that sort of stability that we all crave. Not only can you increase your earning potential with an MBA but you can also gain invaluable experience that will serve you throughout your life. This expanded skill set will have a direct impact on leadership ability and business knowledge that can lead to an increase in overall career prospects. Regardless of what degree you choose, know that there are numerous ways to advance your career through online programs that cater to working professionals.

 

Balance College and Retirement Savings

Everyone wonders if they have enough money saved for retirement, and as a parent, you also have to think about the cost of a college education. Based on recent estimates, a public college education can cost as much as $230,176 in 2035. It’s tough to definitively say what your retirement needs will be when you get to that age, but a cost of living calculator can give you an idea.

This means you need to find a way to balance saving for your kid’s college at the same time as your retirement. Depending on your personal circumstances, you can choose to stagger your savings or save for each at the same time. Whichever route you choose, make sure you do your research so you’ll end up with a strategy that works for you.

Financial planning for parents can be equally important and challenging. That doesn’t mean it’s impossible though. If you have an accurate budget and a detailed plan for the future, your ideal financial future will be within your grasp.

Photo courtesy of Pexels

When it comes to exploring your insurance and college funding options, turn to expert Dan Rhoads at Rhoads Insurance Agency. Reach out today for assistance.

Are you confused by Life Insurance? Can’t decide which plan to go with? Or maybe you think you just don’t need it? Well here’s a Hint: You’re thinking about it all wrong.

As an agent, I actually get angry when I hear about people who have children, but they have no, or very little, life insurance. I’m angry at the person, I’m judging them hardcore, and I think:

“You’re a #$!# adult, with people depending on you, and you don’t have the $&%# sense to make sure that if you die they’ll be okay?! You work your butt off, you work that way to provide for them. So if you’re not there to provide for them, then what happens to them?”

It makes me angry that people learn things the hard way, when they don’t have to. They get a mortgage, take care of their family, and think that they don’t need life insurance. Then, one day, something happens – they die, or can’t work anymore, or have out-of-control medical bills. These people come to me and ask for help, when it’s too late. Their only resort then is a damn GoFundMe campaign!!

And don’t over-complicate it. If you die, do you know what the ONLY question your spouse will ask your insurance agent is? Your spouse won’t ask whether it is Term or Permanent Life Insurance. The only question they will ask is, “How much is it?”

As an agent, I don’t even care whether you get the life insurance with me or not. If you’re not asking this simple question, “Do I have enough Life Insurance,” then you’re setting your family up for financial loss.

Many Americans could not afford an unexpected $1,000+ medical bill, and deductibles are often even higher than that. So just imagine needing $10,000 a month for chemo, or needing open heart surgery! That’s what happens if you’re diagnosed with cancer, heart attack, or other critical illness. You may need help with your deductible.

A critical illness (CI) insurance policy can fill that gap in coverage and keep you afloat. CI pays you a lump sum that you can use however you like – to pay what your health insurance didn’t cover, or to pay household bills while you take time off work to recover.

 

Did you know that there are 2 ways to get CI coverage?

Stand-alone CI policies larger than $50,000 are not avaiable though. That would help with deductibles.

Another, better way to get CI benefits is to get life insurance with living benefits. Living benefits bundles critical illness benefits together with chronic and terminal illness benefits, into a life insurance policy. This isn’t available with all life insurance policies, so talk to your agent about it.

With this type of policy, you can convert 75-95% of your life insurance’s death benefit into something you can receive while you’re still living.

If you need life insurance, this is a much more economical way to plan your benefits. Call us to learn more.

Is Life Insurance Worth It?

Still not sure – Is life insurance worth it? Don’t take our word for it. Listen to someone who has lived through a loss without it.

Purchasing a new home can be both exciting and stressful. For many people, a mortgage is the largest investment they will make in their lifetime. But would your loved ones be able to cover mortgage payments if something unfortunate were to happen to you?

Don’t let worries like this add to the stress of purchasing a home. Term life insurance from Foresters Financial offers an affordable solution to mortgage protection and can be tailored to meet your unique needs.

What is term life insurance?

Term life insurance can be an affordable life insurance option. It provides a fixed death benefit for a fixed premium payment, over a fixed period of time. Your premium payments are guaranteed and will remain level for the term you select.

But my bank is offering me mortgage insurance

Your bank or other mortgage lender will likely recommend their mortgage insurance. However, regular mortgage insurance offers you little control in what happens to your coverage. The lender is the beneficiary and decides how proceeds are spent while your coverage declines as you repay your mortgage.

With Term Life insurance from Foresters, you’re always in control. You own the certificate, decide who the beneficiaries are and your coverage amount remains level even though the mortgage balance decreases. And if you decide to move your mortgage to another financial institution, your term insurance goes with you. You do not have to reapply for coverage and your rates won’t increase.

More than just mortgage protection

What’s more, because term life insurance can be used for a range of time-sensitive expenses, and not just mortgage protection, you’ll have the option to renew your
certificate once the mortgage is repaid or convert to a permanent or universal life insurance plan. Premiums and the death benefit are guaranteed plus there’s a wide selection of terms, issue ages and valuable built-in features.

Your insurance, your life, your way

Term Life insurance from Foresters offers you options to customize your coverage and also provides you the opportunity to contribute to your favorite causes with our Charity Benefit provision.

Love Insurance

If family is the most important thing in the world…you’ll plan and protect it with life insurance.

That’s why we say Life Insurance is really Love Insurance. You don’t get it because you want it for yourself. You get it when you worry about what would happen to the people you love, if you die.

Source: LifeHappens.org

Heart Disease Life Insurance | Reading PA – If you have heart disease or heart disease runs in your family, it’s important for you to plan ahead for your family’s financial future. Because heart disease is the No. 1 cause for death in the United States, it’s important to keep track of your heart health and make sure that you have preparations in place for your family.

When considering whether or not you need life insurance, ask yourself some simple questions. If you passed away, would your family be able to afford the mortgage to keep their home? Would your family have money for basic necessities like food and clothing? Would your children be able to go to college? All of these situations are important to consider as you’re making the decision for your coverage.

If you answered no to any of these questions, it’s important for you to seriously consider getting coverage for you and protection your family’s financial future.

Term life insurance provides coverage for your family in the event of your death so that they can still afford expenses like the mortgage payment, groceries and college tuition. By planning ahead and putting these protections in place, you are guaranteeing your family the future you planned to have together, even if you are not able to be there. If you are an income provider, term life insurance will cover your family by providing them with your missing income so that they are able to pay bills and live comfortably.

Because death is unavoidable and your family depends on you, it’s important to plan ahead for your family’s future while you are still able. If you have heart disease or heart disease runs in your family, it’s imperative for you to plan ahead for your family, because heart disease is the No. 1 cause of death in the United States.

If you pass away and your family is missing your income, it will be difficult enough for them to pay regular monthly expenses, let alone funeral and burial expenses, in addition to any debts you may have. Having term life insurance coverage will relieve your family of the financial stresses that come along with losing a loved one.

Benefits to Heart Disease Life Insurance | Reading include:

  • Guarantees your family will be able to continue their lifestyle.
  • Guarantees your family will not incur financial burden, or lose their house over their inability to pay.
  • Pay off outstanding bills, such as credit cards or a mortgage.
  • Covers any final expenses or medical costs.
  • Provides a peace of mind that your family will be taken care of after your passing.

Reading GoFund.Me

Reading GoFund.me – On May 21st 2018 I searched Go Fund Me to see how many times the word “Funeral” would show up. I was shocked that the result showed 916,952 times!

Today, July 31st 2018 the result has skyrocket up to 1,529,114. That’s a 67% increase in just 2 short months.

Families are being left devastated and under insured, with no options but to turn to public support for help. Reading area families don’t look forward to pleading for community support. Reading GoFund.me pages are preventable, simply by purchasing life insurance.

There’s many reasons we tend to put off our life insurance. I’ve found the most common reason is the cost. If affordability is an issue for you, I completely understand because I have been there, so I can help you.

Maybe you’re young and this isn’t your concern just yet. But just maybe it’s a conversation we should be having with your parents, who want and need to protect YOU.

I’m easy to work with. Call us today, and I will be happy to shop some companies, find you something that’s affordable, that protects you from needing to set up a Reading GoFund.me page.

Just remember, you can’t put a price on your family. But there’s a price on protecting them. I would greatly appreciate be the opportunity to protect your legacy. Let me know how I can help.

IRA vs IUL | Reading PA

How do IUL’s stack up? It’s time for an IRA vs IUL | Reading showdown!

Most people planning for retirement believe that 401(k) and IRA plans are the best strategies for retirement. I get it, they’re popular. But in the last 20 years, we had two major market crashes. Understandably, many working professionals worry about the long-term safety of their money. But with its contribution limits, costly tax implications, and investment options’ exposure to market risk, the IRA can be unseemly for careful savers.

I’ve spoken about Indexed Universal Life (IUL) plans as an alternative to Roth IRA’s in particular however, and how they’re competitive.

But how good or bad an alternative is an IUL, versus an IRA? The answer is, of course, it depends. No one can say for sure, because no one can tell the future of how the market and investments will fare.

I can, however, base projections off of current rates, using myself as an example. Some parameters:

  1. I’m a 40 year old male in relatively good health. For the IUL, I’d expect to get a Preferred Non-Tobacco rating (the second-best rating, not the best).
  2. I’m starting with zero invested in either today, and adding $500/month from now until age 69.
  3. I’m using the current interest rate on a typical IUL product, now at 8.26% EOY. There are no fund management fees.
  4. I’m using an optimistic 7.0% rate of return on a IRA, but subtracting 0.5% for fund management fees.
  5. I’m assuming that markets are steady and not fluctuating, because chaos is hard to model.
  6. And, I’m assuming that taxes will stay at their current rate for someone with an annual income of 100k/year.

Lots of assumptions there, but let’s see where that gets me.

 

IRA vs IUL | Reading: The Results

IUL: $500,579. No taxes taken out, because it’s paid for with after-tax dollars.

IRA before taxes: $630,000. After taxes (25% bracket): $472,500

Those taxes really hurt!

 

Some thoughts to consider:

Taxes: Given current federal fiscal deficits, do you think income taxes are staying where they are or going up?

Early withdrawals: If something happens to me and I need the cash value of the IRA before retirement, I’d pay large tax penalties from the IRA. No penalty for early withdrawals from an IUL.

Probate: If I were to die young with an IRA, my investment would probably be stuck in probate.

Life Insurance: If I were to die young with an IUL, my family would get the death benefit almost immediately. My death benefit at this level would start at $411,000, and go up steadily as I approach my golden years.