Paying for your insurance during COVID-19 Crisis

Paying for your insurance during COVID-19 Crisis video

Some of our insurance companies are offering leniency guidelines for the payment of premiums due to the COVID-19 virus. The premium leniency varies from company to company and not all carriers are offering assistance.
 
If you are in need of payment assistance or have any questions, please contact our office with an email to customerservice@vargasinsurance.com or by calling our office at 617-298-0655 and asking for a customer service representative to obtain details on your specific insurance company.

Or, Click here to access our online customer service center available 24 hours a day 7 days a week to view your insurance policies, print insurance ID cards, update your contact information, download documents, and so much more.

We recommend you contact us with any questions or concerns you may have regarding your policy with Vargas & Vargas Insurance. 

Please remember that should you suffer an AFTER HOURS emergency that cannot wait until we open up for business, call our 24 hours 7 day a week emergency number: 617-322-5289.

We look forward to the day that we can open our doors and you can visit our offices.  

Stay healthy, remember our elderly neighbors!

❤️

Carloscvargas@vargasinsurance.com
www.vargasinsurance.com
617-298-0655

Making an Informed Choice About Accessing the Cash Value of Your Life Insurance Policy

It’s important that you’re well-informed before you access all or part of the cash value of your life insurance policy. After all, you took out the policy to provide for your survivors. That’s why the agents at Vargas & Vargas Insurance work hard to have the answers our clients are looking for. You need to know what impact accessing these funds could have on their future and your own. 

couple sitting in their house and discussing life insurance policy options

Life Insurance Policies that Accrue Cash Value

Cash value life insurance policies are sometimes referred to as permanent life insurance policies. This category includes whole life, universal life, and variable life. One of the biggest differences between these policies and term life insurance is that the latter policies do not accumulate cash value.

Common Ways to Access Cash Value

Policy Loan

Benefits: The life insurance company may offer you a lower interest rate than you can get with a conventional bank loan or by taking a cash advance on your credit card. A policy loan does not qualify as taxable income. You’re typically not required to repay the money since you’ve basically borrowed your own funds.

Drawbacks: However, policy loan repayment is to your beneficiary’s advantage. After death, the insurer usually deducts the amount you borrowed and the accumulated interest from the death benefit.

Withdrawal

Benefits: When the amount withdrawn is not greater than the total of paid premiums, the withdrawal is not taxed. The rules governing a withdrawal depend on your policy. Some policies allow dollar-for-dollar withdrawals.

Drawbacks: With other policies, a withdrawal reduces the death benefit by an amount greater than what the policyholder withdrew.  Withdrawals that exceed premiums paid are usually taxed.

Policy Surrender

Benefits: You’ll receive the policy’s cash value. 

Drawbacks: Your insurer may charge a surrender fee. If you owe any debt from policy loans, the insurer also subtracts your debt from your cash value. Generally, the income from a policy surrender is taxable. Most importantly, you’re effectively canceling the policy. Your survivors will not receive a benefit from the policy.

We’ve provided this information as a general introduction to accessing the cash value in your life insurance policy. If you have specific questions about life insurance policies, contact our team for assistance.

CARE Act and Economic Injury Disaster Loan

The CARES Act was signed into law today. The SBA Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) program has been accepting applications for about three weeks. The EIDL application is complicated and requires extensive information to be submitted both at the application stage and during the process of the loan request.

EIDL provides up to $2Million and rates are: 3.75% 30yrs PROFIT Businesses; 2.75% 30yrs NON-PROFIT Organizations

ALL business owners negatively impacted should immediately apply for EIDL assistance. You can find the application on SBA.gov and click on the amber-colored COVID-19 banner at the top of the page. Download the
application forms, complete and sign, and upload with accompanying documentation. Be thorough for the best chance of speed and success. ALSO: check off ONLY EIDL financing otherwise your application will be held up.

From our CPA James Henderson, “there are many solutions for business owners.  Some are external.  Like loans, SBA or otherwise, loan modifications, tax credits, grants and vendor/landlord accommodations.  Some are internal, like expense management, cash flow projections/management, client revenue deferral, new service offerings, and staff lay-offs.  This crisis times scream for a holistic coordinated/planned approach, rather than a knee-jerk “get a quick loan for cheap” approach”

“I have viewed many of the seminars regarding the SBA EIDL and CARES act financing, and have several clients engaged in the process.  One thing that has come up over and over again is the necessary involvement of the business owner’s CPA valued advisor to get the right program in place depending on a client’s particular circumstance.  There are payroll tax credits available for retaining your workforce.  And with some deeper dive, probably a lot more.”

If you do not work with a CPA, our friends at Aurora Consulting are offering free advice and an affordable consulting fee if a business needs their direct assistance to collate the information and complete and submit the application to SBA. SBA allows a consulting fee up to $2500 maximum. Linda and Trevor have agreed that they will charge only $750.00 as their consulting fee to complete and submit an EIDL application. They will accept a $250.00 upfront payment with the balance due later at a date to be agreed upon by both parties. They don’t want to negatively impact your already-strangled cashflow and are willing to work with anyone who needs their assistance. Basic advice and guidance is free of charge.

They attended a webinar provided by the Governor of Connecticut, Ned Lamont, to discuss the basics of the CARES Act to provide assistance to business owners.  

Here are highlights from the webinar with more to follow in another newsletter soon:

CARES Act website is not active yet

SBA.gov website does not yet have CARES Act information 

Programs will not be available for a week or two

It is recommended to apply for BOTH EIDL and CARES Act financing. Get the applications in process. Once a determination is made for approval, you should then choose which of the two loans works best for your needs.

CARES Act Loans are basically an SBA 7a Loans up to $5MM, short term loans that will be converted to grants if you retain employees.

Employee Retention: this has been most actively discussed in the media and seems to be a priority of the CARES Act financing options. That leads to other questions about how to qualify and that aspect remains to be seen based on the soon-to-be-released CARES Act guidelines from SBA

RECORD KEEPING: Step up the quality of your record-keeping in terms of Employees and Operating Expenses. A mention was made that “forgiveness” of the loan will be decided after an interview and query for proof or Employee retention and that funds were used for Operating Expenses.

SBA does not yet have a timeline when the Lender guidelines will be available to follow for lending but there is an urgent priority within SBA to coalesce the information from the CARES Act and to get information to SBA Lenders

501C3 organizations are eligible under EIDL and CARES Act 

500 employees or less

They are looking to access the Small Business Owners Guide for CARES Act which should be available tonight and we will share pertinent information with you in other email newsletter updates

Linda and Trevor have been fielding calls and queries from anxious business owners all week. They are doing their best to parse the information and get ACCURATE information to you. We strongly recommend you slow-down your decision-making. We’ve already seen some business owners making bad decisions to obtain capital out of desperation. We use the phrase “EVER-EVOLVING” to describe the lending atmosphere in general, and the emergency programs specifically.

Please contact Aurora Consulting and mention that you received this message from us, please SHARE this email with anyone you feel may find the information useful.

Please reply to this message should you have any additional questions!

Coronavirus (Covid-19) Update

The safety of our clients and team has always been our first priority. The #coronavirus (COVID-19) has likely had an impact on our personal and business lives, and we continue to monitor this evolving situation closely.

Vargas & Vargas Insurance is prepared to have our staff work from home and will follow all instructions set forth by federal and state authorities. 

We will be able to provide the same service and customer care as we have in the past. However, the situation is very fluid and we trust you will understand if it takes a little longer than usual to respond to you. There are various ways to reach our team:

Via a call 617-298-0655
Via a text 617-409-0329
Via our service center, click here
Via our website, www.vargasinsurance.com
Via an email to customerservice@vargasinsurance.com
Or, Click here to access our online customer service center to view your insurance policies, print insurance ID cards, update your contact information, download documents, and so much more.

If you have traveled to ​China, Iran, South Korea, Italy, Japan, Hong Kong​ or have been in contact with someone who is ill because the incubation period for this virus is two weeks. Please refer to the CDC website or mass.gov as resources for any updates and refrain from any interactions with the public.

The best way to help yourself and others from spreading the virus is to practice good prevention methods.

1. Wash your hands frequently with soap and hot water for at least 20 seconds.
2. Use hand sanitizer when unable to wash your hands.
3. Sneeze and cough into your elbow, not your hands!
4. Avoid touching your face (eyes, nose, and mouth) with unwashed hands.
5. Stay home if you are feeling sick and avoid close contact with others who may be sick.
6. Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects (including cell phones).

If you are experiencing the above symptoms, please seek medical attention right away and call the healthcare facility ahead to let them know you are coming!

It is more important than ever to strengthen our social bonds. Seniors face particular health risk from this virus, yet taking precautions only reinforces social isolation. Please take the time to call, text, or send a message to your neighbors. Ask if any elderly friends or neighbors need help with grocery shopping. Remind them to stock up on prescriptions and to make provisions for child care in case they may need to seek treatment. Consider setting up a phone tree or email list for your block so that people can be in touch about what they need.

Stay healthy, wash those hands and let’s remember our neighbors!

Lower Mills Holiday

Do I need motorcycle insurance in Dorchester?

Nothing is better on a nice sunny day than being on your very own motorcycle and driving the roads in Dorchester, MA. When you are looking to get a motorcycle, you also need to consider your other needs and responsibilities. One factor to consider is your need for motorcycle insurance. There are several reasons why you need to have motorcycle insurance.

Compliant with State Laws

One important reason why you need to have motorcycle insurance is Dorchester is because it will keep you in compliance with state laws. Similar to any other state, those that operate a motorcycle in the state of Massachusetts need to have liability insurance in place at all times. When you have this type of coverage in place it will provide protection to all other drivers and pedestrians on the road if you are ever found to be at fault in an accident.

Lender Requirements

Many motorcycle owners today end up taking out a loan when they buy their motorcycle. If you do have a motorcycle loan, the lender will undoubtedly require that you carry a full collision and comprehensive insurance policy at all times. This will then give you coverage for a wide variety of situations that could cause a loss, including theft or accident damage. It will also protect the lender’s loan collateral. 

Before you get on a motorcycle in the Dorchester, MA area, you should reach out to Vargas & Vargas Insurance. The professionals at Vargas & Vargas Insurance know how important it is to be covered by insurance when you get on the bike. When you work with them, the insurance professionals will work hard to ensure that they fully understand your situation. They will then work to get you into the right policy for your situation. 

Morning Motivation – Week of May 27

I find that starting my week with words of wisdom helps me to stay productive and in a positive mood. What do you think?

“Discipline is the bridge between goals and accomplishment.” – Jim Rohn

If you remember, last week I shared with you the first three “free traffic” sources for your business website : search engines, free ads and articles. Here are my recommendations for the final two sources of free traffic for your business website:

Giveaway Marketing

Offer something of value that you can give away for free. Think of an informational booklet, or even an entire book; these are good examples of giveaways. Consumers love to get free stuff, especially if there’s information they can use without committing to a purchase. With a giveaway of this nature, you’ve become a resource for someone interested in what you are providing. You’ll want to include links back to your website so that they know how to connect with you.

Participate in Forums and Online Groups

This is a free way to earn that ever-important marketing asset: trust and respect. When you participate in online forums with valuable advice and insight, you become a resource; you become a trusted professional by virtue of your online reputation. Focus on groups specific to your industry and comment on questions posted in the group. Be sure your comments are not simply stale “business card” posts with your contact information and a “call me” statement. Engage with the question by answering it. Better yet, start the conversation by posting your own questions. If you are willing to give something away, you’ll receive positive results.

When forum members get to know and trust you, they will seek you out by virtue of curiosity. They’ll visit your website at their leisure. You’ll see the organic hits to your site increase as a result. Better still, when they need your professional guidance, they’ll reach out to you directly of their own accord.

An important note about participating in online forums: timing and consistency is everything.  If you visit the forums specific to your topic of interest and get involved, the likelihood of targeted free traffic to your site increases exponentially.

These are my suggestions for effective methods to drive free traffic to your site. These methods take time. But if you have more time than money at this point, I promise you, these techniques work.

Which of these five sources of “free traffic” will you try first? Hit “Reply” and let me know which works best for you. Tell me, how I can help you try something new in your business?

Is Motorhome Insurance Mandatory?

A lot of families pack up their camper for a road trip during summer. It’s one of the best ways to travel and see the country with your family. But if you own or are considering getting a recreational vehicle, commonly referred to as an RV or a motorhome, you may be confused on whether or not you need a motorhome insurance. When it comes to motorhome insurance, many factors come into play and laws vary from one state to the next. 
 
In Massachusetts, for instance, you will be required to carry valid liability insurance to drive legally. But do you need a separate insurance for your camper or fifth wheel when driving on Massachusetts roads? Well, not necessarily. But the fact that you may not be legally obligated to carry motorhome insurance for your RV doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t. At Vargas & Vargas Insurance in Dorchester MA, we can help you choose a motorhome insurance coverage that makes sense for your situation.
 
When Is Motorhome Insurance Required?
 
One critical factor that comes into play when it comes to deciding whether you need a separate motorhome insurance policy is the class of the RV. There are three major classes of RVs i.e. class A, B, and C. Class A motorhomes include long RVs such as luxury coaches. The small class of recreational vehicles are covered in class B and include camper vans, travel trailers, and cargo van type designs. 
 
Fifth wheels and other vehicles whose camper portions extend over the cab area are in Class C motorhomes. You definitely need a separate motorhome policy if you have a Class A or Class B motorhome. You may also need motorhome insurance if your RV is a rental or if you don’t own it outright. Find the right coverage for your camper or motorhome at Vargas & Vargas Insurance in Dorchester, MA. Give us a call if you need more information on motorhome insurance. 

Recap: Avoid These Home-Buying Mistakes

“A man must be big enough to admit his mistakes, smart enough to profit from them, and strong enough to correct them.” – John C. Maxwell

Looking for a new home can be a stressful experience, and many people are afraid that they will make mistakes during the process. Thankfully, you have Boston business professionals on your side! We compiled a list of some of the most common mistakes made when buying a home so that you can avoid them. Here are just a few examples. Read the full post from last week for more details.

  • Going to tour potential new homes without a definitive “Wish List” in mind.
  • Forgetting about hidden costs, like closing costs and post-move expenses.
  • Buying a home for your present needs instead of considering the future.
  • Not asking your home inspector questions about the home you’re looking to buy.
  • Avoiding negotiations and agreeing to pay full price.
  • Not buying enough Massachusetts home insurance for your new house.

If you need help with your new home purchase, Vargas and Vargas Insurance Agency can refer you to a local professional. We know all the best loan officers and real estate agents in the area and would be happy to share their contact information. Just call 617-298-0655 and ask! Also pick up the phone and call our agency with all your home insurance questions and quote needs.

April National Days Calendar

April 1st

  • April Fools’ Day
  • National One Cent Day
  • National Sourdough Bread Day
  • Easter – Changes Annually

April 2nd

  • National Ferret Day
  • National Peanut Butter and Jelly Day
  • National Reconciliation Day

April 3rd

  • National Film Score Day *
  • National Chocolate Mousse Day
  • World Party Day
  • National Find a Rainbow Day
  • National Tweed Day
  • SAAM Day of Action – First Tuesday in April
  • National Tweed Day

April 4th

  • Jeep 4×4 Day
  • National Chicken Cordon Bleu Day
  • National Hug a Newsperson Day
  • National School Librarian Day
  • National Walk Around Things Day
  • National Walking Day – First Wednesday in April
  • Childhelp National Day of Hope – First Wednesday in April

April 5th

  • National Caramel Day
  • National Deep Dish Pizza Day
  • National Go For Broke Day
  • National Raisin and Spice Bar Day
  • National Read a Road Map Day
  • National Burrito Day– 1st Thursday of April
  • National Alcohol Screening Day – Thursday of the First Full Week in April

April 6th

  • National Caramel Popcorn Day
  • National Sorry Charlie Day
  • National Student-Athlete Day
  • National Tartan Day
  • National Teflon Day

April 7th

  • National Girl Me Too Day *
  • National Handmade Day*
  • National Beer Day
  • National Coffee Cake Day
  • National No Housework Day
  • National Love Our Children Day – First Saturday in April

April 8th

  • National All is Ours Day
  • National Empanada Day
  • National Zoo Lovers Day

April 9th

  • National Cherish an Antique Day
  • National Chinese Almond Cookie Day
  • National Former Prisoner of War Recognition Day
  • National Name Yourself Day
  • National Winston Churchill Day

April 10th

  • National Cinnamon Crescent Day
  • National Encourage a Young Writer Day
  • National Farm Animals Day
  • National Siblings Day
  • National Equal Pay Day – A Tuesday in April – Changes Annually
  • National Library Workers Day – Tuesday of National Library Week

April 11th

  • National Barber Shop Quartet Day
  • National Cheese Fondue Day
  • National Eight Track Tape Day
  • National Pet Day
  • National Submarine Day
  • National Bookmobile Day – Wednesday of National Library Week

April 12th

  • National Big Wind Day
  • National Grilled Cheese Sandwich Day
  • National Licorice Day

April 13th

  • National Make Lunch Count Day
  • National Peach Cobbler Day
  • National Scrabble Day
  • National Thomas Jefferson Day
  • National Blame Someone Else Day – First Friday the 13th of the Year
  • National Donate Life Blue and Green Day– Changes Annually

April 14th

  • National Dolphin Day
  • National Ex-Spouse Day
  • National Pan American Day
  • National Pecan Day
  • National Reach as High as You Can Day

April 15th

  • National Glazed Spiral Ham Day
  • National Rubber Eraser Day
  • National Take a Wild Guess Day
  • National Tax Day
  • National Titanic Remembrance Day

April 16th

  • National Orchid Day
  • National Bean Counter Day
  • National Eggs Benedict Day
  • National Healthcare Decisions Day
  • National Wear Your Pajamas to Work  Day

April 17th

  • National Bat Appreciation Day
  • National Cheeseball Day
  • National Ellis Island Family History Day
  • National Haiku Poetry Day

April 18th

  • National Animal Crackers Day
  • National Columnists’ Day
  • National Lineman Appreciation Day

April 19th

  • National Amaretto Day
  • National Garlic Day
  • National Hanging Out Day
  • National Oklahoma City Bombing Commemoration Day
  • National High Five Day – Third Thursday in April
  • National Get to Know Your Customers Day – Third Thursday of Each Quarter

April 20th

  • National Cheddar Fries Day
  • National Lima Bean Respect Day
  • National Look Alike Day
  • National Pineapple Upside Down Cake Day

April 21st

  • National Yellow Bat Day
  • National Chocolate Covered Cashews Day
  • National Kindergarten Day
  • National Auctioneers Day – Third Saturday in April
  • National Record Store Day – Third Saturday in April

April 22nd

  • National Earth Day
  • National Girl Scout Leader’s Day
  • National Jelly Bean Day

April 23rd

  • National Cherry Cheesecake Day
  • National Lost Dogs Awareness Day
  • National Picnic Day
  • National Take a Chance Day
  • National Talk Like Shakespeare Day

April 24th

  • National Pigs in a Blanket Day
  • National Teach Children to Save Day– Changes Annually

April 25th

  • National DNA Day
  • National East Meets West Day
  • National Hug a Plumber Day
  • National Telephone Day
  • National Zucchini Bread Day
  • National Administrative Professionals Day – Wednesday of Last Full Week in April

April 26th

  • National Audubon Day
  • National Help a Horse Day
  • National Kids and Pets Day
  • National Pretzel Day
  • National Richter Scale Day
  • National Take Our Sons and Daughters to Work Day – Fourth Thursday in April
  • National Poem in Your Pocket Day – Changes Annually

April 27th

  • National Devil Dog Day *
  • National Babe Ruth Day
  • National Prime Rib Day
  • National Tell a Story Day
  • National Arbor Day – Last Friday in April
  • National Hairball Awareness Day – Last Friday in April
  • National Day of Silence – Changes Annually

April 28th

  • National Kiss of Hope Day – Last Saturday in April
  • National Blueberry Pie Day
  • National BraveHearts Day
  • National Great Poetry Reading Day
  • Workers’ Memorial Day
  • National Superhero Day
  • National Rebuilding Day – Last Saturday in April
  • National Sense of Smell Day – Last Saturday in April
  • National Pool Opening Day – Last Saturday in April

April 29th

  • National Peace Rose Day
  • National Shrimp Scampi Day
  • National Zipper Day
  • National Pet Parents Day – Last Sunday in April

April 30th

  • National Bubble Tea Day *
  • National Military Brats Day
  • National PrepareAthon! Day
  • National Adopt a Shelter Pet Day
  • National Bugs Bunny Day
  • National Hairstylist Appreciation Day
  • National Honesty Day
  • National Oatmeal Cookie Day
  • National Raisin Day
  • National Sarcoidosis Day