Life Insurance: Term vs. Permanent

 

When people are alone, they don’t even think about life insurance, but as soon as there is a loved one, family, or a partner, then the idea begins to make a lot more sense.

The first reaction is often the most common; to take out a term life policy. This plan is the most basic form of life insurance, providing coverage for a set period once the customer has been approved. However, even though these plans can go for as long as 30 years, at the end of that period, they end with nothing left for the customer. Then the person either needs to take out a far more expensive plan due to age or walk away, according to Vargas & Vargas Insurance.

With permanent life insurance the customer gets a double benefit. First, there is the primary interest, coverage that provides a financial safety net for loved ones if something happens to the customer. Second, a permanent life insurance plan doesn’t expire or end as long as the customer wants to maintain it. Finally, there is a savings component where some of the money paid into the plan as a premium goes into a savings account. The customer can then access this account in later years or ensure it goes to a partner or beneficiary, providing ready cash at a time when income is limited in the future. Granted, the permanent life insurance approach costs more due to the increased benefits, but the customer retains more of the value overall.

To find out more about how life insurance works, the experts at Vargas & Vargas Insurance can help those in Dorchester, MA with questions or concerns. We have handled multiple policies over the years and are up to date on all the latest aspects of life insurance plans available.

 

Weight Loss Tips for Your Bikini Body

Bathing suit season is here once again. If you’re getting ready to hit the beach or go out on your boat, you may be thinking about how to lose those extra pesky couple of pounds that you gained over the winter. When it comes down to it, weight loss is all about calories: burn more calories than you consume, and you will lose weight. However, this is sometimes easier said than done. Here are a few tips that will help you consume less calories (and burn more):

  • Cut out drink calories: You may be surprised how much juice, soda, and alcohol calories add up! Drinking low-calorie beverages like water, tea, and black coffee is a great start to any diet.
  • Portion control: Instead of giving yourself a giant serving, use a smaller plate to cut back on the size of your meals. Tell yourself that you can always go back for seconds, but odds are you won’t need to.
  • Increase your protein intake: Protein makes you feel fuller longer and boosts your metabolism. Chicken, eggs, avocado, and almonds (among other foods) are great sources of protein.
  • Take the stairs: In addition to eating less, take even small opportunities to burn a few extra calories. Take the stairs, park in the back of the lot, or take a short walk during your lunch break.

If you’re planning on heading out on your boat or watercraft this summer to show off your swimsuit body, first call Vargas and Vargas Insurance Agency at 617-298-0655. We can help you with your boat insurance needs, and much more! And remember, stay safe while you’re out on the water!

Where Are You Now? A Half-Year Check-In On Your 2017 Goals

 

“Vision is a destination – a fixed point to which we focus all effort. Strategy is a route – an adaptable path to get us where we want to go.” -Simon Sinek

Can you believe that the midpoint of 2017 is almost upon us? If you look back on the first half of this year, did you get done what you wanted to accomplish? How many of your goals are you hitting or have you abandoned? How are you feeling about your year so far? Pull up a chair and a mug of something warm and let’s talk about it. I’ve sitting outside enjoying a delicious organic coffee from my friends at Plate Restaurant and one of their “chubbs” What are YOU drinking? Leave a message below and let me know.

Deliberate Living
When I looked at my business over 13 years ago, I came to a realization: I wasn’t really working as tightly to my plan as I had wanted. And as you know, I do a yearly goal alignment exercise at the beginning of the year and now I have started also looking mid-year at my progress with my goals.

We all get flustered – something fails, we end up feeling like we can’t make it all work, or we set our goals so high or they are so varied that we can’t possibly hit them. Have you heard that expression “You can’t be a servant to two masters?” I’ve been thinking a lot about that. I want to give you a quick run-through of how I’m handling this and what I’m doing to make 2017 my strongest year ever.

Remember my email message last December that said this on setting goals:

Make them “SMART.” This is an acronym, as you probably know, and it is interpreted in various ways by different teachers. When I refer to SMART goals, I mean goals that meet five criteria. They must be:

  • Specific—your goals must identify exactly what you want to accomplish in as much specificity as you can muster.
    • Bad: Write a book.
    • Good: Write a book proposal for The Life Plan Manifesto.
  • Measurable—as the old adage says, “you can’t manage what you can’t measure.” If possible, try to quantify the result. You want to know absolutely, positively whether or not you hit the goal.
    • Bad: “Earn more this year than last.”
    • Good: “Earn $5,000 more this year than last.”
  • Actionable—every goal should start with an action verb (e.g., “quit,” “run,” “finish,” “eliminate,” etc.) rather than a to-be verb (e.g., “am,” “be,” “have,” etc.)
    • Bad: Be more consistent in blogging.
    • Good: Write two blog posts per week.
  • Realistic—you have to be careful here. A real goal should stretch you, but you have to add a dose of common sense. I go right up to the edge of my comfort zone and then step over it. (If I am not out of my comfort zone, I’m not thinking big enough.)
    • Bad: Qualify for the PGA Tour.
    • Good: Lower my golf handicap by four strokes.
  • Time-bound—every goal needs a date associated with it. When do you plan to deliver on that goal? It could be by year-end (December 31), or it could be more near-term (September 30). A goal without a date is just a dream. Make sure that every goal ends with a ‘by when’ date.
    • Bad: Lose 20 pounds.
    • Good: Lose 20 pounds by December 31st.

Reevaluate your own goals for 2017
If I were thinking through the categories of how I’d change my goals for 2017, this is what I would all myself:

  1. Where am I now?
  2. Where do I want to be?
  3. What do I think is missing/needs improvement?
  4. What do I already know?
  5. How can I reach my goal?
  6. What needs to be in place to stay consistent?

I hope that these questions are helpful. Work through them and you’ll see that it helps in lots of ways. Use it however you see fit. It’s how I’m starting my mid-year goal review exercises to prepare for the remainder of 2017.

I’m looking forward to living deliberately from my plan, and my plan involves serving you to the best of my ability. Help me stay accountable? Please help me understand how best to serve you – please leave a comment below.

And know that you are loved.

Hope to see you around the neighborhood!

C

Preparing to Sell Your Home

If you’re thinking of leaving the Boston area, or if you’re just upgrading to a new home, you need to get your home ready for market. With the help of a top notch real estate professional, you can have your home ready to show off to potential buyers in no time. To start preparing a little early, use the following Realtor-approved tips:

  • Curb appeal is crucial – make sure that your lawn is manicured, and touch up paint if necessary. Outdoor furniture and windows should be clean, and shrubbery and flowers should be pruned.
  • You want to make sure that your home feels spacious, so put away clutter. If you’re planning on moving, you can start packing away anything that you won’t need in the near future so that your home feels roomier.
  • Are there any repairs that will need to be done before your home sells? Get a start on those now – some sellers won’t like the idea of buying a home that needs repairs. For an idea of what needs to be done, ask for the help of a licensed home inspector.
  • When buyers tour your home, they will need to be able to envision living there. Help this process by depersonalizing the space – remove family photos, toys, and pet items from view.

And remember, when you do sell your home, talk to your Vargas and Vargas Insurance agent about how to cancel or transfer your existing Massachusetts home insurance policy. We are happy to answer any and all of your questions, and we will work hard to make the home insurance process as easy as possible for you and your family.

Do I Have to File a Claim?

FAQ: Do I Have to File a Claim?

We’ve all been there – you have a very minor issue with your home or car, and you think “I can handle this on my own… Do I have to tell my insurance company?” While it’s true that the answer depends on many factors (including your insurance provider and the terms of your coverage) here are some thoughts that can help you navigate this confusing situation:

Check your policy conditions –  there may be language within that requires you to submit a claim. If you fail to notify your insurance provider about any occurrence that may result in a claim, you could be in violation of your policy condition, which could result in forfeiture of coverage for the incident in the future. This means that if the situation turns into more of a mess at some point, you may be up a creek without a paddle!

Most people would agree that it’s better to submit a claim from the onset rather than risk the potential of having no help from your insurance provider if the problem gets more complicated.

As you know, Vargas and Vargas Insurance Agency is always available if you need to make a claim on one of your Massachusetts insurance policies. There are many ways to contact us – call 617-298-0655 during office hours, call our 24/7 line at 617-322-5289, text 617-409-0329, or email us. We will always do everything in our power to ensure that you are satisfied with your insurance experience, so let us know if there is anything that we can do for you!

The Top 3 Summer Insurance Claims

Here at Vargas and Vargas Insurance Agency, we want to make sure that your valuables stay safe. That’s why we are constantly offering blogs with safety tips for our customers. And if something does go wrong, our top of the line insurance policies will help you get back to normal quickly. If you’re interested, here is a short list of some of the most common insurance claims that we see in the summer time:

  • Car Accidents – Sure, these accidents happen all year round, but in the summer more people are on the road, whether they’re going to enjoy a day at the park or going on a road trip. This increased traffic leads to an increase in auto insurance claims.
  • BBQ Fires – When the weather warms up, so do the grills! Barbequing is a great way to get family and friends together to enjoy the outdoors, but can be a hazard if the proper safety procedures aren’t followed.
  • Burglaries and Break-ins – Summer is a great time to go on vacation. Unfortunately, burglars know this, and that’s why crimes like these are more common in June, July, and August. Prevent a break-in by following these safety tips. You should also check to make sure that your home insurance is ready for a claim – just in case.

For more information on how to avoid claims like the ones listed above, make sure that you check our blogs regularly. And if you’re interested in getting a Massachusetts insurance quote, just call 617-298-0655 to speak to one of our friendly and knowledgeable agents.

Celebrate Summer at the Neponset RiverFest!

The general public is invited to the first Annual Neponset RiverFest, on Sat., July 22 from 10am-2pm, at the DCR Neponset II Park, Dorchester alongside the Neponset River.

New parks and bike paths line the shores of the River, along with beautiful natural salt marshes and wetlands that support more than 200 species of birds, fish and other wildlife, all right in the City.

The RiverFest is a free, family-friendly,  public event. 

Come out to celebrate this natural wonder and discover all it has to offer.

  • Try out a kayak or canoe on the Neponset River
  • Explore a tide pool with the New England Aquarium
  • Attend a fishing clinic with Mass Fisheries & Wildlife

  • Take a chance on a new fishing rod & reel
  • Walk/bike the Greenway
  • Play in the spray park
  • Eat yummy food
  • Create art – and more…

Bring a blanket and a picnic, and spend the day! Entrance to the park is on Hilltop St. near Granite Ave.

For more information, please contact Nancy Fyler fyler@neponset.org  |  781-575-0354 x307

Sponsored by the Neponset River Watershed Association, Department of Conservation and Recreation, Beth Israel Deaconess Hospital Milton, Paddle Boston, DOT Smiles, Whole Foods, and the Cedar Grove Civic Association.

Click here for more details

Monday Motivation June 19, 2017 When You Reach The End Of Your

I hope you had an amazing Father’s Day weekend!

As always I like to start my week off right with some words of inspiration…

“When you reach the end of your rope, tie a knot in it and hang on.”
-Thomas Jefferson

Whether you are new to or a seasoned professional in sales, there are times in our life where we have done all we can… In those times,
don’t give up
don’t stop,
just hang on and continue pushing….

Consistent action, even if the action is just hanging on, will pay off…

Keep pushing and keep creating the amazing life you know you want and deserve!

We have made many changes at our agency to better help you and your clients when you have an insurance question or need a quote.

You can call us at 617-298-0655
You can now text us at 617-409-0329
Or, for a quick insurance quote, you can email: quotes@vargasinsurance.com

Check out our blog for some advice if you are working with a property that is vacant or unoccupied, read the blog here.

And remember that I work deliberately from my plan, and my plan involves serving you to the best of my ability. Help me stay accountable? And make sure you help me understand how best to serve you. Fair?

Have an awesome week!

And know that you are loved.

Carlos

The Best Ways to Treat a Sunburn

Sometimes, no matter how hard you try to practice safe sun, you end up with a sunburn. If that’s the case, here are some tips for you on how you can deal with this annoying and painful issue:

  • As soon as you notice yourself getting burned, go indoors to prevent the issue from getting worse.
  • To help cool off the burned skin, take a cool shower or bath or use a cool compress.
  • You will be more prone to dehydration while you have a sunburn. Make up for this by drinking extra fluids.
  • Soothe skin with a moisturizer that contains aloe. Hydrocortisone cream can also be used if you are in particular discomfort.
  • Swelling and discomfort can also be treated with aspirin or ibuprofen.
  • If your skin begins to blister, avoid the temptation to pop them – they are there to help the body prevent infection. Instead, let them heal naturally and call you physician if symptoms get worse.
  • If you go outside while your sunburn is healing, take extra precaution to protect the more vulnerable burned skin.

Remember, though, that (as the saying goes) an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. While treating a sunburn is possible, it’s better not to get one in the first place – so make sure that you continue to practice safe sun techniques throughout the summer months.

The same is true with your insurance policies: insurance from Vargas and Vargas Insurance Agency will help you prevent mishaps from turning into full-blown disasters. Call 617-298-0655 today to make sure that your insurance portfolio is ready in case you end up needing your coverage in the future.

American Flag Guidelines, how to handle, honor and dispose of Old Glory

 

This is the time of year that we show our American pride by waving the American flag, hanging it on our homes, boats, bikes, buildings, and cars. It’s easy to forget, though, the proper way to handle and hang the American flag. But, did you know that there are rules for how to handle, respect, honor and dispose of Old Glory?

Here are the top ones.

Orient it correctly. The field of stars should always be at the top-left corner, whether you are hanging it horizontally or vertically. The view should always be from the outside-in, so you still have the field of stars in the top left corner if it’s horizontal or vertical. It’s important that the flag be flown higher than any other flag if there are others beside it.

Leave the light on. Traditionally the flag has flown outside from sunrise to sunset, but if illuminated properly it can be left out for 24 hours. You might try a solar light that gets dim during the day and brightens at night, or a garden spotlight to keep it illuminated throughout the evening.

Consider the weather. You do not want the flag subjected to harsh elements of rain, wind, or snow, but long as it is made of weather-resistant materials, it should be able to withstand those elements.

 “Life, liberty, the pursuit of happiness –

– whatever America means to you is symbolized by

the stars and stripes, and we should feel

a sense of pride and gratitude every time we

salute Old Glory.”

Retire the flag once it’s worn out. Traditionally, disposing of a flag is done via burning. If you don’t want to do this yourself, however, you can call the local VFW to dispose of it in a respectful way, or even in a ceremony.

Don’t let it touch the ground or anything beneath it. When flying the flag from your vehicle, you want to attach it to your antenna, or to the right side of the fender, or to your window by letting the Flagstaff hang from the right side.

The flag is not to be used for advertising or promotional purposes. For example, putting it on napkins, plates, and boxes. Anything that’s temporary or can be disposed is restricted.

No decorations of any kind. You can use decorative flag banners, for example, but the flag itself should not be used as such.

It’s important that we handle the flag with the respect, dignity, and honor that it deserves. There are extensive guidelines, per the U.S. Flag Code, that provide more information. If you’d like to be an authority on that code, go ahead and read it. In the meantime, I hope to be your insurance experts. Our team and I are always happy to provide Star – Spangled Banner service to you or anyone you know needing an insurance quote or review.

Please feel free to give us a call at 617-298-0655 or email our team at quotes@vargasinsurance.com

 

Carlos