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Showing posts from November, 2010
Global smartphone sales rose by nearly 100% in the third quarter of 2010 compared with the same period last year. That allowed Apple and Research In Motion to pick up market share while large handset companies like Nokia, Samsung and LG, which do not have strong smartphone products, lost ground. The success of the iPhone and smartphones powered by Google's Android operating systems have allowed these 3G and WiFi powered devices to leapfrog over products like the netbook as "PC replacements." iPhone has a huge advantage over netbooks because of the App Store, which has more than 250,000 software applications that enables users to customize their devices to their individual needs. The first major smartphone was the BlackBerry. It was introduced in 2002, but was built for business use. The iPhone, which was first available in 2007, created a huge consumer demand for smartphones. The smartphone has begun to replace a number of other consumer electronics devices. As AT&T and…

Disaster Preparedness

PUBLIC SERVICE ANNOUNCEMENT (30-sec TV) Disaster Preparedness Tips for Homeowners and Renters
Take an inventory of your valuables and belongings. This should include taking photographs or a video of each room. This documentation will provide your insurance company with proof of your belongings and help to process claims more quickly in the event of disaster.To enable filing claims more quickly, keep sales receipts and/or canceled checks. Also note the model and serial numbers of the items in your home inventory.As you acquire more valuables — jewelry, family heirlooms, antiques, art —consider purchasing an additional “floater” or “rider” to your policy to cover these special items. These types of items typically are not covered by a basic homeowners or renter’s insurance policy.Remember to include in your home inventory those items you rarely use (e.g., holiday decorations, sports equipment, tools, etc.).Store copies of all your insurance policies in a safe location away from your home …


Insurance Commissioners Offer Tips for Consumers KANSAS CITY, Mo. (July 17, 2007) - With healthcare costs rising and longer life expectancies, funding long-term care needs is an increasing concern for millions of people. According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), about 9 million Americans, now 65 or older, will require long-term care. HHS expects that number to rise by 25 percent - to 12 million - by 2020. The average annual cost of nursing home care is $74,806, according to Genworth Financial's 2007 Cost of Care Survey, but that figure can fluctuate depending on the level of care required, and the state in which the care is provided.     To help consumers make more informed decisions about long-term care insurance coverage, the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) offers tips and considerations through its public education program, Insure U - Get Smart About Insurance, at Additi…

Finding Health Care Coverage in California

Download the Finding Health Care Coverage in California
Download the Finding Health Care Coverage in California (Spanish)
Written for consumers, this is a user-friendly, 20-page booklet-version of Health Care Options MatrixT Guide that is available in English and Spanish. This is an ideal tool for health care providers to give their patients, insurance brokers to their clients, teachers to their students, business owners to their employees, and many others.

THIS IS FOR INFORMATIONAL PURPOSES ONLY. I am trying to let people know about some resources that are available, but sometimes we are not aware that they exist.

How to Become a Boss by: Jeffrey Fox

Never forget that your success was not earned by you alone
You are never too important to listen and learn from anybody. People who keep their promises flourish in good companies One goal of the great boss is to teach people to think for themselves, to stand by themselves. The great boss encourages food based mini-celebrations Your words carry weight; speak with discretion. Don’t talk about one employee with another employee of equal or close rank. Lightning can strike in many ways – money, flowers, trips, gifts, handwritten notes, public thank-you’s. Be mentally tough. Be emotionally tough. Make the tough decisions. You can care and be tough. You can be tough and nice at the same time. Don’t discount advice given in an obnoxious, rude, or insulting way. Don’t discount advice given in an angry, loud, irritating voice, just because the voice is off-putting. Listen objectively. Listen with self-discipline. Listen. Consider. Decide. Then do what you think is best. It is prudent to have an occasiona…

Property Taxes

Questions You Should Ask About Property Taxes By: Michael Magaw / Peter Wollner Real Estate Update, November 2010

Property taxes are a major expense, one which often totals thousands of dollars per year. But property taxes are not the same for like properties or for every owner.
Property taxes provide much of the revenue used to fund local and state governments. As property values go up, property tax collections also rise which means additional dollars are available for more public services -- and perhaps even for tax refunds. Alternatively, if property values decline, then government programs tend to be squeezed or there is pressure to raise income and sales taxes to make up for short-falls.
How much you pay for property taxes depends on the value of your home and also local tax policies. In the usual case, a property value is established by government assessors. Once a value is set the tax rate is then applied. For instance, if the rate is $1.50 for each $100 in value, then a home worth …