Three Ways to Help Employees Find the Right Benefits

3 ways to help employees find the right benefits Shopping for an item in the store can be frustrating if you don’t know exactly what you’re looking for and where to find it. The experience can be even more challenging if you can’t find someone to help you. Many employees feel the same way when selecting health care benefits plans. The wording and coverage options can be confusing. Here are three ways to help employees find the right health benefits. 1. Take a family health inventory to better pick the right benefits Employees should make a list of the expected health needs for the upcoming benefits year, such as: Medical Procedures and tests Prescription medications Dental services, including orthodontia, crowns and implants Vision exams, prescription contacts or eyeglasses Hearing test and aids 2. Evaluate benefits choices and costs Most people spend 30 minutes or less reviewing their benefits options. They often are unfamiliar with the insurance language and coverage choices. Information can be simplified by using these tips: Use boxes, charts and illustrations to help navigate through the decision process. Highlight insurance premiums, copays and out-of-pocket costs. These are important figures to be considered when evaluating benefits that fit into budgets. Break down finances into understandable examples, such as daily or weekly costs. Review benefits plans to ensure current providers are listed. If not, members will need to switch providers or be willing to pay extra for out-of-network care. 3. Consider ancillary plans while looking at benefits Dental, vision and hearing benefits help employees and their dependents head off health problems. Many serious medical problems can be detected during regular exams, which may help lower health expenses...

Retirement Saving Tips

If you find yourself with an empty nest and a good-paying job, you may be tempted to indulge in a few splurges that weren’t possible when college tuition or mortgage payments were due.

Budgeting for Beginners

This article was first posted at https://www.fulfillinglife.com/insight/budgeting-for-beginners/ Budgeting for beginners If you don’t use a budget system to track your expenses, don’t worry, you’re not alone. A budget is a monthly plan for your money that uses your income as a cap for your spending. In fact, a budget is the first step to living within your means and identifying areas where you can cut back on expenses to put more toward your saving goals. Budget basics The first step in creating your budget is listing your various sources of income and amounts. To be sure you live within your means, you shouldn’t spend more than you earn, so this monthly total is important to know. Next, determine how you spend your money, otherwise known as expenses. Track your spending for a month. Gather bills and receipts, including online receipts, and don’t forget occasional splurges like new shoes or concert tickets. You may want to group expenses into the following categories: Fixed committed expenses: essential expenses that are the same from month to month, such as rent or mortgage, phone bills, utilities and insurance payments. Variable expenses: essential expenses that vary from month to month, such as food and clothing. Luxury expenses: expenses for things you like, but don’t necessarily need. The important thing to remember about budgeting is to create a system that works for you. Whether you fill out your income and expenses in writing, record your expenses in an Excel spreadsheet or use one of the many online budgeting programs and apps, find a system you can stick with and feel comfortable using. Saving more money on...

Making The Most of Your Tax Return -Josh Wilcox

As Benjamin Franklin put it many years ago, “In this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes.” With April 15th fast approaching at least one of those things may loom large in your life (possibly both if you are afraid you’ll have a heart attack when you see how much you owe). For many out there, though, you may be celebrating a nice check from Uncle Sam for your tax return. While I’m not a tax expert or accountant, I’d like to take this month to help you get the most out of that return. First, it’s important to understand where your return comes from. While it may be fun to get a check for a few thousand dollars in April every year, it isn’t free money. This is simply a return of taxes you have overpaid throughout the last year. In essence the IRS is returning money that you lent them, interest free, over the last year. If you have trouble saving money it can be a way to prevent you from overspending, but if you save well it’s likely taking money that you could be using to grow your savings each month in vehicles providing you a potential return on your money. This simple calculator from Kiplinger can help you determine how many withholdings to claim to maximize your take home pay. After you’ve determined your most advantageous tax strategy it’s time to make the most of any return that you do get. The simple answer is save it. Unfortunately, that’s not always the easy answer. It may be a great way to pay...

How to Make Bold Decisions

It can be hard to step out of your comfort zone. Trying a new thing isn’t always easy but sometimes it’s necessary. Take a step back to look at where you are in life. Are you where you want to be or did you have another picture in mind when it came to the future? Many people lose themselves going down a path they THINK is right but it turns out just being one degree off has major consequences. There are numerous ways to get you back track to where you want to go and doing what you want to do. Taking risks is one HUGE way to kick-start the process. To learn a little more about why people get off-course and how you can fix it can be...

New Partnership with Kingdom Insurance Group and Davidson Insurance Agency

    Ameritas Financial Center is excited to announce a new partnership with Kingdom Insurance Group and Davidson Insurance Agency.  Kingdom Insurance Group is located in Gretna. Davidson Insurance Agency, is located in Lincoln. They both represent premier independent property and casualty insurance providers serving over 5,000 families and businesses in Nebraska.   The partnership with Kingdom Insurance Group and Davidson Insurance Agency will allow Ameritas Financial Center to offer more solutions. These include investment, retirement and insurance. Doug Ortlieb, President of Kingdom Insurance Group and Mark Davidson, President of Davidson Insurance Agency, see this union as an opportunity to fully secure their clients financial futures. “The partnership with Ameritas Financial Center is a real benefit for our current and future clients.  We are able to sleep better knowing we have partners from a local independent financial services firm, who serves our clients with the same level of integrity and customer service that we currently provide.  I am excited for the opportunities this presents to our clients and their families,” Mr. Orlieb states.   Mr. Corey Poulosky, President of Ameritas Financial Center is also excited for this new partnership. He states “This new connection with Kingdom Insurance Group and Davidson Insurance Agency provides great possibilities for all.  Our clients stand to benefit tremendously from their connections and experience in serving the people of Nebraska.  Mark and Doug represent the hardworking and trustworthy types of individuals that anyone in our business would dream to work with.  I am honored they have chosen to work together with our advisers at Ameritas Financial Center to better serve all of our clients.”  ...

Financial Terms Everyone Should Know

These basic financial concepts are something that everyone should know. Breaking down investing lingo into layman’s terms is key to understanding your financial picture. Finances can be tricky, and financial lingo can be worse. Here is a list of the top 10 basic financial concepts every investor should have a basic understand of.   Do you know what a Target-date fund is? Often found in 401(k) plans, target-date funds are designed to serve as all-in-one portfolios that are tailored to your expected retirement date. What about a Prospectus? It’s a legal document that contains details about stocks, bonds, a mutual fund or whatever you’re planning to invest in. If you’re wondering, what the expense ratio is on your mutual fund, or you would like a list of all the fund’s holdings, you’d find it in the prospectus. To learn more about these two terms and to learn the other eight terms...

Don’t Be Afraid To Smile!

Admit it, we all get caught up in our day to day activities. Our daily routines seem to drain our energy and our positive (and happy) attitude falls by the way side. The top three reasons people claim to be unhappy at their jobs are: Being underpaid Lack of opportunity to advance in their career Long and inflexible work hours Here are 15 ways to help combat these issues and help boost your mood. *Hint hint* Don’t be afraid to step out of your comfort zone, you may be surprised more often then you...

10 Money Rules to Follow if You Want to Build Wealth

Sometimes it seems as if there’s no way you can be financially successful. Wanting that new car or a new pair of shoes is tempting especially when you’re starting to make a substantial amount of  money. Learning to save and spend your money correctly doesn’t have to be constant struggle. Here are 10 [easy] ways to build your wealth and teach you how to be financially...

Top 4 Retirement Saving Ideas

Here are some simple steps you can take toward retirement readiness. Anne explains. Anne Ackerley is the Head of BlackRock’s U.S. & Canada Defined Contribution Group.  She has written about (simple) ways saving for retirement is necessary.  In her short article, she also writes about how your retirement goals are easily attainable.  To read on about the four retirement ideas she has...