It Doesn’t Always Pay to Bundle Insurance!

In the last year, I have called 4 different popular insurance companies to see if I can get cheaper rates for my homeowners or car insurance.  I have sat on the phone and given all of my information with both policies sitting in front of me and then we get to the numbers….

Their quotes are always higher than my current policies.

And when I tell the popular insurance those numbers….they apologize and say that I already have the best rates.  They can’t match!  What’s up with that?

So far, it has been cheapest for me to keep my car insurance with Geico and my homeowners insurance with MetLife.  I will say that I’ve been with Geico for a LONG time so I am getting a loyalty discount.

The bundle is often a marketing scam – you assume you’re getting the best price because it’s bundled but often it could be cheaper to stay sepearate.

Protips for Insurance Shopping

1. Be prepared to spend some time and just pick up the phone
So far I have yet to be lucky enough to have a quote generate over the phone.  I sit there and put all my info in then they ask me to call with a reference number….only to have to give them all of the information again.  Don’t waste your time online – call that bitch and cut out the beep boop boop middle man.

2. Have your policies and most recent bills in front of you
They’re going to ask you a lot of questions about your current policy and it’s a lot easier to answer instead of guess.  This also ensure that you’re comparing apples to apples.  It’s also a lot easier to throw a premium number at them before they can push you to start signing up for their insurance.

3. Don’t tell them the premiums you pay until the end
I have just always found this to be easier because then they will be quoting you apples to apples to what you currently have.  If you tell them the number up front they may try to just get you a policy that is closest/below that number but not for the same coverage.  See what the exact coverage you have would be the go from there.

4. Ask if there are any employer or alumni discounts
I save $21.69 on my car premiums just for being a Drexel alumnus.  Every bit helps!

5. Sometimes it pays to stay loyal
I also save $40.16 on my car premiums because I’ve been a client with them for so long – I’ve only had a mortgage for a year but I’m sure I’ll be calling MetLife in another year to see what can be done for me.

I’m very interested to see what other people’s experiences are with this!  Whatchu got?  Lay it on me!

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#TealTuesday #4 My Only Handbag

wp-1483021280753.jpgThis is basically the only handbag I own.  I use this or my Under Armor backpack for all my shit-lugging needs.

I bought this Fossil Morgan Zip Cross Body Bag in September of 2014 and it has been my only real handbag since.  I still have the bag that this one replaced, but the strap was broke n so when I switch out I have to use the same strap.

Aside from not considering handbags – PLURAL- a necessity, here are the strict requirements I have for handbag purchase.  If it doesn’t meet these requirements, I will not buy it (no matter how cute it is.  no matter how on sale it is.  no matter how badly I want something new):

 

Criteria for a Handbag:

Cross Body Strap.  I have to be careful about hurting my back but I NEED to be hands-free and cannot stand bags that have to be held up on your shoulder or at your elbow.  Don’t even get me started on clutches.

Zip Top.  Not only does this keep your bag from falling over/being dropped and spewing your bag full of shit all over the street but it keeps people from being able to pick-pocket you.  In a city, I need that extra bit of security.

At Least 2 Pockets.  This one has EIGHT and I love it.  I like my bags like I like my emotions – easy to compartmentalize.

Real Leather.  Cloth bags get dirty and fall apart a lot faster.  I need something durable that will last and so far Fossil’s leather has been doing good.  Yes, the dye is starting to wear off in some spots on this bag but you

How many handbags do you have?  What’s the oldest one you use?

#TealTuesday #3 The Recovery Edition

So I am recovering from sinus surgery that I had last Thursday.

 

I’m in a pile of teal blankets on my couch with my dog who has a teal collar.  Most likely in my teal jammie pants.

Zzzzz…..

 

Week 2: Electric Boogaloo

Personal Goals

General Health
Last week i only went to the gym once…but also had surgery on Thursday.  So far recovery has been as expected – full of drugs and lots of rest.

GYM July 2016 – June 2017: 34/120

Sub-Goal: Donate Blood – February 20th!

create! Create!! CREATE!!!
I did not create much this week as I have been too fucked up to do much more than watch People’s Court – but I have been working on the book The One Thing: The Surprisingly Simple Truth Behind Extraordinary Results

I also heard back from a local bar that I had reached out to regarding some arts & crafts events so I’m now waiting to see what they have to say.

 

Financial Goals

Pay Down Some Mortgage
I saved $8 this week using Qapital …but the Qapital goal currently has $49.87 in it since I have been saving since November in it.  I’m gonna go ahead and bump this up since that’s going to the mortgage so I’m going to update that.

Save Like a Motherfucker
I noticed that my bank started charging me $1.99 a month for a FinanceWorks budget tracking…since I use mint.com I called the bank and cancelled this service.  That will save me $21.89 this year!  I also finally got paid this past Friday but am waiting to move anything to savings until I see how much the surgery cost.  The surgery and CT scan should not cost more than $875 total so let’s see what that comes out to when the bill comes!

Mortgage: $49.87/$1,000
Savings: $0/$1,000
So $2,000 towards each of these goals by June? It’s still reasonable.

Professional Goals

Continuing Education Credits for Health License
I have confirmed with the person at work that I can set up times to meet weekly for insurance so I will set that up once I am back at work.  I also have coupons to take classes for all of my CE credits

Learning About Annuities
I spoke with the person I need to and will also reach out to her once I get back to work.

Blog Goals

Why The Fuck Are You Reading This?
I’d actually like to know why the fuck you are reading this.  It’s probably going to take me some more time to get my voice but I’m interested to see what’s working and not so far.

Weekly Updates
Two down!

Surgery Day!

If you’re just tuning in, I am having my sinuses roto-rootered today!  So as you are reading this I am in the various stages of handling that and will be home for the next week.

I actually had this surgery once before in October 2013 and the feature photo was from that recovery.  I’m in a slightly better spot this time around with a new doctor, new medical regiment, decent health insurance, and paid sick time.  Last time, I managed to pay $3,000 for this surgery and had to take unpaid time off.  It’s amazing what can change in three years of progress!

I’m excited to line up some more blog posts and get a few more drafts started in this time.  I’m also excited to lay on the couch with my dog.  People at work think I’m nuts for being excited and thinking of it as a vacation….but recovery is kind of the ultimate vacation because you literally can’t do anything.  I’m pumped.

What should I binge on Netflix this week?

 

 

 

 

#TealTuesday #2

Going through my goals – health is a huge part of that.  Here is a typical picture of me at 7ish in the morning getting ready to go do some fitness.2016-08-25 07.23.05.jpg

Tuesdays are also one of my gym days.  Check that sweet runner’s jacked.  I don’t run.

I’ve lost about 100lbs since 2006 and am in a constant struggle to maintain a healthy lifestyle.  I’ve had this jacket for many years and it has stayed comfortable through my journey!  I’ve had this jacket since I lived in Maryland and won’t get rid of it despite it being a lot louder than I prefer my clothes to be these days (yes, even at the gym.)  But I am making it do and getting my buff on.

I’m using a series of apps to keep track on my fitness:

AchieveMint  lets you earn points for linking your trackers and you can cash out rewards.  It takes awhile but I like it – Sign Up with my referral link and you will get a bonus!

Fitbit – my Charge HR tracks my exercise, steps, sleep, water, and heart rate.  LOVE IT.  I also love doing Challenges with my friends.  Add me and let’s step it out. (links to higi, achievemint, and myfitnesspal)

My Fitness Pal tracks my food and cardio (links to my fitbit and achievemint)

higi is where I track my blood pressure and weight.  They’re at most Rite Aids and Wallgreens.

Zodiac Signs and your Money Management

From Thought Catalog’s  What Your Zodiac Sign Says About How Good (Or Bad) You Are With Money by Kara Stevens:

Sagittarius

Sagittarius has a strong work ethic and zero qualms about rolling up his or her sleeves and putting in a hard day’s work. This fire sign is passionate about what they do for a living. They spend judiciously,purchasing items of quality or great usefulness. The financial health of Sagittarius is typically good since they are quite good at socking away a sizeable amount of cash and make careful spending choices.

Accurate or accurate?  I’m only not good at socking away sizeable amounts of cash because I’m adept at throwing sizeable amounts of cash into debt.

I take everything I read regarding zodiacs with a grain of salt!  I’m aware that the stars do not define everything…but it’s fun to think about when mine are often painfully accurate!

How did this post align with your sign?

A Better Way to Goal – Wuddup, 2017?

“To be happy we need something to solve. Happiness is therefore a form of action;”
Mark Manson, The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck: A Counterintuitive Approach to Living a Good Life

I’ve spent the last few years haphazardly monitoring my goals that every year seem to be the same themes with little progress….and every year I end up feeling unfulfilled.

This year, I’m going to go a bit above and beyond. I turned 30 this month and I’m finally ready to grow and focus.  Less nickel and diming and more big-picture shit.  I think I’ve put together some legitimate, measurable goals for 2017 that I am excited to work towards.

Personal Goals

General Health
2016-08-25-07-23-05“lose weight” is pretty typical but this year I just want to focus on making good health decisions.  I’ve gained about 30lbs in the last 2 years which sucks but I am not upset with how I look.  So I am going to get some blood work done in February after my sinus surgery to see where I really need to work but am also going to continue doing healthy shit like not drinking soda and hitting the gym and using my FitBit.
Sub-Goal: Donate Blood – Donating blood is basically the poor philanthropist’s greatest gift.  Too broke to give money?  Here is some shit your body literally regenerates for free.  Have at it.  I’m signed up for a blood drive on February 20th to donate at the University of Pennsylvania (had to wait until after surgery)

Focus on Creativity 
I’ve spent the last few years focusing my energy on committing almost every waking moment to making money – from work to sitting in front of this laptop cranking out surveys and videocounts for apps like Swagbucks and InboxDollars.  Every year, the earning becomes less and the burden to make pennies greater.  It doesn’t make me happy.  So I need to reset that.

2011

Creating makes me happy.  Painting, doodling, collaging, reading, going to art shows makes me happy.  I need to get back to that and bring my focus back to the ways I feel most alive.  I’m gonna do the fuck out of some art this year and I’m going to work the sexiest on me – my goddamn brain.

Financial Goals

Pay Down Some Mortgage
Wuddup, mortgage? How YOU doin? Look, we’re cool and all but I don’t want to hang together for 30 years. So I’m gonna pump money into your principal this year. Take it like a champ. But June I want to have one extra payment of just principal in there – about $1,000.

Save Like a Motherfucker
Between my savings and my Roth IRA there is a lot of opportunity to put more money away and I need to embrace that this year. Ideally I would like to put at least $1,000 away by June between those two accounts.

So $2,000 towards these goals by June? It’s reasonable.

Professional Goals

License Credits
In order to maintain my health, life, and disability insurance license I have to get 24 Continuing Education (CE) credits every 2 years.  It would appear that most people wait until they’re getting the notifications that it is about to expire.  I’m going to get a jump on it and try to get 12 credits done by June.

Annuities
These are not my responsibility at work currently but I want to learn more about them.  There’s not much elaboration here because I have much to learn.

Blog Goals

Why The Fuck Are You Reading This?
I want to be a voice for personal growth.  I want to motivate my fellow “aging millennials” to push through mountains of debt and still live a happy life.  I’m tired of stressing about my student loans and mortgage every goddamn day and it took a meeting with a financial adviser for me to realize that I am paying off my investments in my future and there’s no need to live a life of guilt and deprivation.  Within reason.

Weekly Updates
I want to work to update you on these goals weekly.  I want to spend most of my time creating but I want to check in and be held accountable.  Follow me to share your journeys.  Follow me to ridicule me when I miss a week or have gained another 30 pounds.  Follow me to see a lot of F-bombs.

So these are my goals to solve  – what are you going to accomplish the fuck out of in 2017?

StepBet Challenge: Money Incentives for Fitness! Starts 1/23

It’s very easy to encourage me to do things when money is involved.  In 2012 I did Weight Watchers and lost a shitload of weight…but now I’m 30lbs up again and am just…..unable to do that again.

So I’m putting money down in ways that I can get back.  One of the greatest investments I have made has been my FitBit Charge HR and several sites that I link to it!

My friend recommended DietBet but I am trying out their partner StepBet for a FitBit challenge where I had to hit my step goal 4 days a week and go above my goal 2 days a week…if I do this, I will get my $40 back and then some.

Sign up and join us for Fitbit for Weight Loss: Goal Getters! – $40 Bet
Starts January 23 and ends March 5.

Not a bettin’ man?  You can also use Achievemint to earn for fitness for free- link your fitness and social media apps to earn!  Sign up with my link and earn 250 points.

 

How do you earn money for your fitness goals?

Craft Cave + Painting

Today I have the day off thanks to Christmas – so the man and I are bopping around the house, cleaning up, and tackling some projects.  I am going to start a painting and he is testing out some stripping on a trash-picked end table.

wp-1482771185506.jpgGetting my hands dirty…

Even though he has primarily used the basement so far for projects in the winter…I am really putting a Craft Cave together down there for craft and art projects.  Today I put a base color down on my first canvas in a good 5 years and it feels good to have paint on my hands again.  I’m going to warm up with some paintings of my dog.

 

I will use this link to organize my palette

I’m looking forward to using these hands to make some artwork again in 2017!

What are you doing to live a more creative life in 2017?