Thursday, December 31, 2015

Ringing in the New Year!

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Entrepreneurs Unite!

Are you dreaming of starting your own business?

Are you a college student or a stay-at-home Mom or Dad who needs extra income?

Do you want to join a community of entrepreneurs to exchange ideas and get tips?

Do you want free training on how to set up your own website?

If you answered 'yes' to any of the questions above, I highly recommend you join Wealthy Affiliate and experience what they can do to get you started on your path to financial independence.

Tax Advantages of Life Insurance

Under current Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) guidelines, insurance policies receive many favorable tax advantages.

Tax-Free Death Benefit
Should the insured die the entire death benefit, including the cash value, is income-tax-free to the beneficiary.

Tax-Deferred Earnings
You do not pay taxes on gains in the policy. Tax is deferred until you decide to surrender the policy, the policy has lapsed, or when certain distributions occur.

Tax-Free Withdrawals
When the cash value in the policy is sufficient, premiums paid into a policy can be taken as tax-free withdrawals up to your cost basis in the policy. This is the premium you paid with after-tax dollars.

Tax-Free Loans
Besides the withdrawals, you can take more money out of the policy in excess of your basis (your paid premiums) through tax-free loans with a very low net effective rate.

When you take a loan from the insurance company, they will take the same amount of the loan from your cash value and transfer it to a loan reserve account. They will charge you interest on the loan. However, the loan reserve earns interest. This is an excellent feature when you need to access your money.

As long as you stay within the IRS guidelines, the withdrawals and loans can be taken without federal income tax liability.

In Canada, insurance policies generally receive favorable tax treatment, and funds are sheltered from taxes. Individuals should consult with their tax professional and their insurance agent for additional information, specifically in regards to policy loans.

Monday, December 28, 2015

Money During Critical Times

What comes to mind when you hear the term "life insurance"?

Do you think of it as something unnecessary?

The main purpose of life insurance is to protect your loved ones, business, or estate if you die. However, in many cases, the insured may have great needs at critical times while still living. Living benefits, also known as Accelerated Death Benefits, are a feature where the insurance company pays or advances a portion of the policy's death benefit to the insured to pay for care or treatment. If the insured dies, the balance of the death benefit will then be paid to the beneficiary.

In cases of serious illness such as heart disease, stroke, cancer, paralysis, and terminal illness with a diagnosis of less than twelve months to live, the accelerated payments will be very helpful for the insured and his or her family.

Thus, life insurance is beneficial not just for the death benefit. With living benefits, the insurance can be more flexible to provide much needed money at critical times. Many Term Life policies have this benefit. It can also be purchased as a rider in permanent life policies.

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

The Inexplicable Universe with Neil deGrasse Tyson

Discover all of the universe's unique mysteries with expert Dr. Neil deGrasse Tyson in this online course at Udemy!

Thursday, December 10, 2015

Books for Pet Lovers

The Chicken Soup series for animal and pet lovers. Like other books in the Chicken Soup series, these books will take you through life experiences and make you appreciate what you currently have.

If you haven't read my blog post regarding pet care you can check it out here.

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Chicken Soup for the Soul - Christmas & Miracles

Inspirational stories based on real life experiences. These books will put a smile on your face, make you laugh, move you to tears, and ultimately make you reflect on what it means to be a living being.

Sunday, December 6, 2015

Kids' Learning Activities

The holidays are here, but that doesn't mean your children have to forget everything that they learned during the school year. Give their young minds a boost and prepare them for the new semester with these educational games and activities.

Thursday, December 3, 2015

Home Sweet Home for Cats and Dogs

How to make your home a better place for your pet:

1. Consider sensitive noses. If you use strong-smelling cleaning products, be aware that pets may not like those scents. Use cleaning products that break down and remove odors rather than just covering them up.

2. Don't hide the litter box. Cat owners will often hide them in closets to keep them out of human sight. Or they may choose a litter box with a lid on it. The cat may develop litter box aversion as a result. So place the litter box in a spot with a clear view and in a room the cat often visits.

3. Fight pet boredom. For pets, the best part of the day is during mealtime, and it can be over within seconds. Extend the fun with food dispensing toys that turn every bite into a game.

4. Add a second water bowl. Cats in the wild do not drink water in the same spot where they feed because the water could be contaminated. So put a water bowl far from the feeding station.

5. Think vertically. Cats and dogs love looking out a window, but often windows are too high for them. Put a platform or piece of furniture near the window so they can see out.

6. Provide a quiet space to retreat. Pets need a quiet, comfortable place where they can take a break from other animals, kids, or visitors. A dog or cat needs some control over its environment.

Check out these cool products for your cat or dog:

The Refined Feline Cat Cloud Cat Shelves

Drinkwell Ceramic Avalon Fountain for Pets

KONG Goodie Bone Dog Toy

Watercolor Cat Painting
Marsala Cat
Mira Guerquin