twp insurance

Oscar Comes To California

OSCAR comes to CA: If you have been noticing all the health insurance advertisements in the last few weeks then you have surely noticed the new player in California named OSCAR. Oscar is marketing themselves as very tech oriented, particularly with a phone app that gives you access to 24/7 doctor visits over the phone, and a fit bit tracker that rewards you with Amazon gift cards for achieving your fitness goals.  For people who do not go to the doctor very much and just want coverage, Oscar may be worth checking out. 

However, here is TWP’s analysis of Oscar for 2016 in LA County:

1.       Oscar in new in California and that means their network is very small. How small? Pretty darn small. You can search their network here: https://www.hioscar.com/search/CA/doctors

2.       Oscar is new which means they are an unknown. An unknown is an unknown. For people who enjoyed the new to California health insurance company Assurant can attest, two years later after the Affordable Care Act began we are having to move every client to a new plan because they are now not offering Major Medical Coverage in the United States.

3.       Oscar is only offering an EPO, which means “exclusive provider network”. In human speak this means that only the doctors in Oscar’s network will accept this coverage. This is not a big deal if you never go to the doctor or if you want to use this network. This is a very big deal if you have specific doctors that you see often and they are not in the network.

4.       We recommend Oscar to those who rarely go to the doctor, enjoy tech and how it is working to make our lives easier, and want to experiment being on the cutting edge of a new health insurance company in California.

If you would like, you can sign up directly with Oscar on their nifty and clean website through our broker link here, and/ or pass this on to your friends and family: https://www.hioscar.com/brokers/referral/715 The benefit of having us as your broker rather than being on your own is that there is no cost to you and we can call the health companies for you be your advocate to help with any situations that tend to arise regarding billing, payment, processing, etc.  


Oscar's List of 2016 Participating Hospitals in LA County: 

● Providence St. Joseph Medical Center ● Providence Holy Cross Medical Center ● Providence Little Company of Mary Medical Center - Torrance ● Providence Little Company of Mary Medical Center - San Pedro ● Providence Tarzana Medical Center ● Providence St. John’s Health Center ● Good Samaritan Hospital ● St. Joseph Hospital of Orange ● St. Jude Medical Center ● Hoag Memorial Hospital Presbyterian ● Mission Hospital Regional Medical Center - Main ● Mission Hospital Regional Medical Center - Laguna Beach ● Huntington Memorial Hospital ● Henry Mayo Newhall Memorial Hospital ● UCLA Medical Center - Santa Monica ● UCLA Medical Center - Ronald Reagan

Medicare Open Enrollment Starts October 15th. Please Schedule Your Appointment.

Medicare open enrollment begins October 15th and ends December 7thPlease book an appointment between those two dates. By law, we can't talk to you about your options before October 15th.  This is our annual review of your Medicare coverage to ensure that you have the best coverage possible.
 
Please schedule your appointment on our new website here or give us a call at 424-288-4254. 
 
Regular Open Enrollment under the ACA Affordable Care Act starts November 1 –January 31, 2016. 
 
You should be receiving your renewal packet in the mail shortly. Whether you are on Covered California or directly covered with the carrier please speak to us prior to submitting your renewal so we can make sure you’re on the best carrier for your needs. Click here to schedule or call us 424-288-4254. Please schedule your appointment after November 1st. We will not have the new rates until then. 
 
Assurant is ending so if you are covered by Assurant please schedule an appointment here or call us so we can move you to another carrier.
 
Anthem is changing from EPO to PPO for Los Angeles, San Francisco, San Diego and Orange Counties.  This is a very positive change because you will now have out of network benefits with Anthem.
 
Blue Shield will also only offer a PPO throughout the entire state of California for all of 2016. They will no longer be offering their EPO policies in Northern California. 

United Health Care is coming to California in a few counties in Northern California but will not include Los Angeles, San Diego or Orange Counties.

How To Wreck Your Estate

One of the best things about celebrities is that they live their lives so publicly that, hopefully, the rest of us can learn from their mistakes.  When it comes to famous people who mismanaged their considerable estates, regrettable stories abound: 

Guitarist Jimi Hendrix left no will and no instructions.  It took 34 years of court battles to come to some resolution, and, according to biographers, relatives closest to Hendrix during his lifetime didn’t get a dime.  Attorneys got plenty. 

Actor Heath Ledger failed to update his will after the birth of his daughter, Matilda.  His legal will left all of his assets to his parents and sisters.  Confusion and recriminations abounded until the family (much to their credit) decided to gift the entire estate to then two-year-old Matilda. 

James Gandolfini, the actor who played Tony Soprano, left behind a much criticized will that reportedly did not protect large portions of his hefty estate from probate and exposed his heirs to millions of dollars in tax liability.                  

You Too Can Easily Wreck Your Estate...and, in doing so, you may also compound grief issues and soil your legacy among family members and friends whom you hold closest to your heart.  Let us spell out some of the most common examples of bad advice that can cost you and your family so much. 

#1 “Don’t worry!  You’re too young to worry about a will.  You don’t own enough yet to protect.”

Death, injury and illness are not reserved just for the elderly.  There are vital reasons now to address your estate.  Dying without a will may subject your assets to a potentially very expensive and time-consuming probate process.  Your neglect also adds significant stress to the hearts of your loved ones, perhaps in a time of nearly unendurable grief. Your plan should also include documentation to designate who cares for your children in your absence, who cares for you if you are incapacitated, and the quality and limits of your own medical care in the final season of your life. 

#2 “Let someone sign a signature card at your bank so that, if anything happens, at least they can pay your bills.” 

Not a good idea.  Allowing someone else to “fill out a signature card” on a financial account immediately makes him or her a full co-owner of that asset. Not only do countless stories exist about “loved ones” abusing such privilege, but, if either one of you becomes embroiled in a lawsuit, bankruptcy or divorce, you and your “co-owner” are very much at risk.   

#3 “Don’t worry.  All of your money will go to the person listed in your will.” 

Not so fast!  Even if you have a will designating your intended heir, he or she may not get the money you have stashed in specific accounts.  If you own an insurance, brokerage or investment account which cites a beneficiary, that other document will trump the value of your will.  If, for example, you write out a will leaving your whole estate to your cat BUT your former wife is still listed as the beneficiary on your 401(k), your ex-wife will get the cash in that 401(k) account.  

#4 “You don’t need a planner. You can do it yourself with some help from an attorney.”
  

Many people approach estate planning in a piece-meal process, only addressing those issues which impress them as important at the time.  They consult an attorney only if (A) legal documents are required and (B) they can’t find a DIY (Do-It-Yourself) solution on the Internet.  Not good.  Estate planning should never be a patchwork process.  

The lapses or well-intended messes you leave behind may very possibly impact the quality of your final days and compound the tragedy of your departure.  Your estate plan may involve the entirety of your financial profile and, done well, absolutely maximizes your personal wealth for the duration of your life.  Only after your security is settled, should you plan then to maximize the amount of wealth that you pass on as a legacy to those whom you love the most.

Attorneys are often a vital part of this process but are not equipped in many financial matters.  You need a team led by a financial professional.  Don’t compromise the quality of your later years.  Don’t short-change the people you love.  Let’s meet and talk about your good intentions.  

Sources:  (1)  “Six Costly Estate-Planning Minefields, and How to Avoid Them.” Consumer Reports.  consumerreports.org. 4/14/15.  (2)  Goldman, L. “10 Celebrities Who Made Terrible Mistakes Planning Their Estates.  Business Insider.  businessinsider.com.  12/7/10.  (3)  Fabio, Michelle. “The Battle over the Jimi Hendrix Estate.” legalzoom.com.  12/1/09.  (4)  Davis, C. and Ambrose M., “Heath Ledger’s Daughter to Inherit Entire Estate.”  People Magazine.  people.com.  9/29/08

Investment advice is offered by Horter Investment Management, LLC, a Registered Investment Adviser. Insurance and annuity products are sold separately through TWP Financial. Securities transactions for Horter Investment Management clients are placed through Pershing Advisor Solutions, Trust Company of America, Jefferson National Monument Advisor, Fidelity, Security Benefit Life, ED&F Man Capital Markets and Wells Fargo Bank, N.A. 

 

 

 

Good News: Blue Shield Individual (Under-65) Plans are Now Accepted at UCLA and Cedars-Sinai

Blue Shield of California has reached a long-awaited agreement with University of California Health System (Hospitals and IPA/Medical Groups), including UC Davis Medical Group, UC Davis Medical Center, UCLA Medical Group, Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center, UCLA Medical Center Santa Monica, UC Irvine, UCSD Medical Center, UCSD La Jolla, UCSF Medical Center, UCSF Mt. Zion, Langley Porter Neuro Psychiatric Institute, and UCSF Medical Center at Mission Bay.

Effective July 1, 2015 the University of California Health System providers will be participating in Blue Shield's Individual and Family Plan (IFP) Exclusive PPO Network and IFP EPO Network with Covered California on-Exchange and off-Exchange directly through Blue Shield.

This is great news! Blue Shield’s network is finally growing and now has a similar size network to Anthem’s. Blue Shield is also a PPO plan so it will also pay for out of network services. This can be very important especially if you see a therapist since most therapists do not take insurance. In this situation, we recommend a gold or platinum plan so you do not need to meet a deductible before getting a reimbursement.

Get Ready for Open Another Open Enrollment!

The Fall Open Enrollment will be here before we know it. This is our busy season and our goal is that each one of you feels you are given white-glove service. We will be contacting you to set up an appointment to talk about your health plan during the open enrollment periods.

Here is the schedule:

Medicare Open Enrollment for Medicare Advantage and Part D Plans: October 15 – December 7

Individual Plans: November 1 – January 31, 2016

Update on Assurant:

Unfortunately, Assurant is closing their doors for health insurance business so we will be contacting all of our Assurant clients to make sure they are successfully moved to a new plan by December 15, 2015.  Let us know if you know someone that could also use our help in moving from Assurant to a new plan. As always, there is never any extra fee for our services when we help with insurance related products.

Please give us a call at 424-288-4254 if you have any questions.

Don’t Let the Cost of Inflation Threaten Your Retirement Dreams

In a long lost movie called “The Great Rupert,” a dancing squirrel finds one man’s horde of cash stashed away inside the wall of his duplex apartment and showers it, one bill at a time, through a hole in the ceiling upon Jimmy Durante, the occupant of the adjoining space. Durante, of course, is thrilled by his good fortune. His neighbor, on the other hand, loses his hard-earned nest egg, one wadded up bill at a time.

There’s No Good Fortune in Inflation!

Like a hidden rodent, inflation gnaws away at the substance of your retirement dreams until, bit by bit, the value of your own treasure -- your long-term security -- is depleted. Just think, a paltry annual inflation rate of 2% would have eroded the value of cash, stashed away in the year 2000 in some apartment wall or coffee can, by 34 cents on every dollar in today’s value. In effect, we’re being robbed...and yet we might as well be battling a squirrel for all the recourse we have. At whom can you point a finger and cry, “Thief! Thief!”?

You Have to Fight Back!

Within a much larger arsenal of weapons at our disposal as financial professionals, here are four basic rules to live by:

1. A Comprehensive Plan is Absolutely Essential.

Just as a wise man works with his CPA or his financial advisor to devise clear tax strategies, so you need to plan well to protect your retirement dreams against inflation. Very often, by carefully reviewing your financial choices with you, we can not only help you fight inflationary drag; we may also recharge your savings plan to build even more security and comfort.

2. Re-Check Your Investments.

Every single investment is either resistant or vulnerable to inflation. Are your investments secure? Just as you go to a doctor to check out the state of your physical health, you need to seek out a financial professional to secure your investments against the ravages of inflation. Let us help you in this regard.

3. Buy Your House.

Even as the housing market has taken a beating over the last decade, it still makes sense for retirees to own their own home. A fixed-rate mortgage will establish the amount of your monthly payment for decades.

4. Don’t Let Lifestyle Inflation Creep In.

“Lifestyle inflation” is marked by an increasing
cost of daily living, not so much because of the decreasing value of money as much as it is our appetite for better things, coupled with an ever growing range of options. Think! You used to just love your little cell-phone, but today you feel naked without a smart-phone. You place a high value on the camera, calendar service, GPS and a thousand other handy phone applications. Do you need all that? Now multiply that phenomenon by applying it to restaurants, kitchen equipment, home services, your car, etc., and you can see the result -- a constantly increasing cost of living without an increase in real value.

Please contact us for a free review of your financial portfolio and investments to make sure that you are protected against inflation and other financial threats.

Source: Ning, David. “Five Sensible Ways to Combat Inflation in Retirement” U.S. News & World Report / Yahoo! Finance. 11/28/12
Investment advice is offered by Horter Investment Management, LLC, a Registered Investment Adviser. Insurance and annuity products are sold separately through TWP Financial. Securities transactions for Horter Investment Management clients are placed through Pershing Advisor Solutions, Trust Company of America, Jefferson National Monument Advisor, Fidelity, Security Benefit Life, ED&F Man Capital Markets and Wells Fargo Bank, N.A.

How To Avoid Being "Rocked" By Retirement

How to Avoid Being “Rocked” by Retirement

Most Americans have visions of what their retirement may look like -- time to pursue avid interests; perhaps continued education, fishing or endless days of golf; relocating to follow the grandchildren; or time to renew the dearest relationships of your life. Well, maybe. Many retirees face a serious time of adjustment, especially if they haven’t planned financially, psychologically, and relationally. When push comes to shove and “retirement” becomes a reality, you may be challenged by some aspects of that adjustment. Here are a few to consider:

1.The Emotional Adjustment May Rock You for a Time.

Walking away from an established role often involves serious head-games. For years and years when people have asked, “So can you tell me about yourself?” you began by saying, “I’m a teacher” or “Well, I’m an attorney” or “I’m in construction.” All of us, to some extent, define ourselves by what we do. When you retire, that fundamental perspective shifts. For a time, we may not really know who we are within retirement’s dramatically different landscape. The adjustment may require time, encouragement of loved ones, or even professional help. Owning a clear plan before you make that transition eliminates uncertainty and makes the whole process easier. We would love to help you put that into place.

2. Spending Down Assets Can Be Difficult.

Whoa! Here’s another twist! For long years, you’ve socked away dollars and managed resources to be able to afford retirement; then, suddenly, you’re spending, pulling those assets in an entirely different direction. Alicia Munnell, Director of the Center for Retirement Research for Boston College, says many retirees find spending their hard-earned resources may initially seem “repulsive” and that retirees may sometimes need to give themselves “permission to spend their money.” The expectations of children, grandchildren or loved ones, who may or may not be anticipating some kind of inheritance, may very well increase anxiety issues.

3. Building Wealth Is Only Half the Battle.

Accumulated wealth is no guarantee of long-term comfort. If you don’t believe that, you can look at the majority of retired NFL players or lottery winners! Even before you take that first step into retirement, you should have a clear plan in place to conserve your assets, to absolutely maximize the value of every available dollar. Chasing dreams recklessly -- meaning “without a plan, established priorities and/or clear direction” – may result in your eventually waking up penniless.

4. Medicare Doesn’t Pay It All.

Successful retirement planning often involves understanding that medical expenses may still be a major concern even with Medicare. Hearing aids and dental care can be two leading examples of expensive issues where Medicare won’t help.

5. Very Few Retirees Relocate.

There may be lots of talk about moving to follow grandkids or to sunbathe in warmer climes, but very few people do. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, only one out of every 100 retirees, age 65 and over, moved to a different state from 2009 to 2013. You don’t want to just stumble into retirement. The prerequisites of a healthy retirement -- especially the process of accumulating wealth to achieve a quality life-style – require time and careful planning. Give us a call to discuss your options. We would love to help.

Sources: (1) Brandon, Emily. “10 Surprising Facts about Retirement” U.S. News & World Report. yahoo.com. Feb. 17, 2015 (2) Cussen, Mark P. “Journey through 6 Stages of Retirement” Investopedia. investopedia.com. Feb. 17, 2015

Investment advice is offered by Horter Investment Management, LLC, a Registered Investment Adviser. Insurance and annuity products are sold separately through TWP Financial. Securities transactions for Horter Investment Management clients are placed through Pershing Advisor Solutions, Trust Company of America, Jefferson National Monument Advisor, Fidelity, Security Benefit Life, ED&F Man Capital Markets and Wells Fargo Bank, N.A. 

Getting Old is Not for Sissies

How to Prepare for the Cost of An Aging Parent

Getting old is not for sissies.

And this is equally true: serving as the caregiver for your mom and dad may take all that courage and more.

Make no bones about it. You may very well need the wisdom of the sages, the flexibility of a circus gymnast, and an army of counselors and advisers to successfully navigate the obstacle course reserved for those committed to caring for aging parents. Especially if your parents don’t want to cooperate, you can anticipate reaching the outer limits of your emotional bandwidth trying to serve them.

No matter how young or old, how healthy or infirm your parents may be now, you should take note of these guiding principles. Time and attention invested now will pay off in spades if a season of real crisis appears. 

#1 Time Is Not On Your Side

The time to talk about “elder care issues” is NOW!  Putting off the big discussion about your parents’ wishes, asset management, their insurance, care-planning and estate issues can very well leave you trying to navigate a House of Horrors with your hands legally tied and your eyes blindfolded. 

Shared silence endangers the quality of their own last days and, perhaps, your own financial security as well. At the very minimum, these five legal documents need to be in place:

A. A medical directive or “living will”

B. A medical power of attorney and HIPAA release

C. A durable power of attorney for finances

D. A revocable living trust

E. A legal will

Understand that these documents must be completed while each parent is mentally capable of making his or her own decisions. If one slips into an advanced state of dementia or suffers a stroke or head injury, then the difficulty of your journey is compounded unnecessarily.  Ask us for a list of estate planning attorneys that can help you create these documents.
 
Secondly, a list of your parents' financial assets needs to be available, preferably including account numbers, recent statements and contact information for any responsible financial agents. Knowing where their most recent tax records are held may be helpful as well.

#2 Know that Every Move You Make Carries Legal and Financial Implications.

Consider this scenario.

Because of a serious debilitating condition, your parents face a decision involving long-term nursing care. Medi-Cal or Medicaid can offer what amounts to a financial life preserver. But Medi-Cal can deny payments for lots of reasons, can demand answers about your parents’ spending decisions, and can seize your parents’ home for repayment of long-term care expenses even if a will already exists to pass their home on to you!  Regulations vary from state to state, so doing your homework is critical.
 
#3 Understand Your Parents' Assets and Debts

Getting involved in your parents’ finances may seem intrusive to them, but it’s really important for both their sake and yours as well.

Debts may pass through to your parents’ estate and could affect you. Those obligations will vary according to their state of residence, the companies to which they owe money, and their insurance coverage.

It’s a clear fact that, as parents age, they become more prone to making costly mistakes AND stand a much greater chance of being targeted by those who would take advantage of them.

If your parents own their home or have debt obligations against it, make sure they are current on payments. Credit card statements can also give you a snapshot of their finances.

No one knows for certain what you or any other member of your family may face in coming years. Your true security comes with understanding and carefully managing the assets you gain during your productive years, assets sufficient to face life’s sudden jolts and challenges fearlessly.

We help people build that security. We work with you to grow real wealth which can provide for a rewarding lifestyle and stand sentry against scary financial seasons.  Let us help you manage the transitions of your parents’ lives and yours as well.

Please contact us for a free analysis of your current portfolio. (424) 288-4254. 

Sources: (1) Pulawski, Shirley. “Eight Essential Things to Know When Estate Planning for Aging Parents.”   My Bank Tracker.  mybanktracker.com. Nov. 20, 2014. (2)  Costal, Karen. “5 Legal Documents you Need for Your Loved Ones” caring.com/checklists.  Dec. 12, 2014. involving long-term nursing care. Medicare or Medicaid can offer what amounts to a financial life preserver. But Medicare can deny payments for lots of reasons, can demand answers

Investment advice is offered by Horter Investment Management, LLC, a Registered Investment Adviser. Insurance and annuity products are sold separately through TWP Financial. Securities transactions for Horter Investment Management clients are placed through Pershing Advisor Solutions, Trust Company of America, Jefferson National Monument Advisor, Fidelity, Security Benefit Life, ED&F Man Capital Markets and Wells Fargo Bank, N.A.

How to Draw the Attention of the IRS

How to Draw the Attention of the IRS: 

For millions of Americans, the prospect of having the IRS audit your tax return is enough to cause your stomach to tense, blood pressure bump upward, and palms grow a little clammy. While none of us wants to or should pay Uncle Sam a dollar more than we owe, none of us ever wants to be among the roughly 1% of Americans this year summoned by the IRS to justify our tax calculations either.

So how do you minimize your exposure to the IRS? Understand this: the IRS usually doesn’t just choose names like a blindfolded executive drawing names out of a hat at some office party. There are red flags that tax-payers raise in filing taxes, red flags that cry, “Pick me! Pick me! Pick me!” And just as you perhaps inadvertently hoist those flags, you can also consciously lower your taxpayer’s profile and minimize your chances for an audit.

Consider the following principles:

1. Higher Income Draws Closer Scrutiny.
Reporting more than $200,000 in income will automatically hike your chances of being audited from 1.11% to 3.93%. No one advises you to earn less, and yet tax law allows for methods to reduce your reported income. Take full advantage of the “Income Adjustments” on page 1 of your Form 1040 to squelch the size of your adjusted gross income even before you reach for Schedule A deductions.

2. Failure to Report Income Is Like a Red Flare.
The IRS receives copies of all of the W-2’s and Form 1099’s that are delivered to you, so omitting reported income is simply foolish. Don’t do it.

3. Higher Deductions Draw Attention.
The IRS takes into account the median deductions for categories like medical expenses, charitable contributions and taxes. If you fall outside this range, it raises a red flag.

4. Be Careful When You Estimate!
The word “estimation” implies questions about the value of reported transactions. Whether you’ve donated property to a charitable organization or are calculating a business deduction for your office at home, you need to have the documentation to substantiate your deductions.

5. Home Offices Are a Red Flag All by Themselves!
Like any good business, the IRS is going to concentrate on those areas that, over history, have proven the most lucrative. High, high on that list are home office deductions which, very often, the IRS can chop down considerably. Understand this: a legitimate home office claim can include a portion of your rent or mortgage, real estate taxes, utilities, phone bills, insurance, even relevant landscaping -- IF AND ONLY IF you use claimed “office space” exclusively and regularly as your principal place of business. If you take the home office deduction, be prepared for scrutiny.

6. Watch Your Business Expenses!
Entertainment, travel and auto, meals and other business expense are as commonly abused in the private sector as they are in government offices. This is fertile ground for the IRS, and they know it -- especially among self-employed individuals.  The law prescribes that you hold receipts for any such expense of $75 or more and that you record the amount spent, place, names of people present, and the business purpose of any cited event.

7. Report Foreign Bank Accounts!
Want to get into deep trouble? Try to conceal from the IRS a foreign bank account or financial activity conducted overseas. It’s the nature of our world now that banks, here and abroad, are forced to report more and more detailed information, and, in recent years, the IRS has made it a high priority to research the overseas assets and activity of citizens parked here at home. Penalties in this area are among the most stringent.
Sources: 1. “IRS Audit Red Flags: The Dirty Dozen” Kiplinger.com. 11/14/12 2. KFMR Certified Public Accountants & Business  Consultants. “Average Itemized Deductions” Financial Fitness  Special Edition.    KFMR.com. 12/1/12. 3. Perez, William. “Tax Planning Basics: 3 Ways to Reduce Your Taxes” About.com.

Investment advice is offered by Horter Investment Management, LLC, a Registered Investment Adviser. Insurance and annuity products are sold separately through TWP Financial. Securities transactions for Horter Investment Management clients are placed through Pershing Advisor Solutions, Trust Company of America, Jefferson National Monument Advisor, Fidelity, Security Benefit Life, ED&F Man Capital Markets and Wells Fargo Bank, N.A.

Living The Life of Riley

Accruing True Wealth: Put Your Money To Work For You

Ever heard someone say, “Oh yeah! He’s rich! He’s livin’ the life of Riley!” Dictionary.com defines “life of Riley” as “a common expression for a carefree, comfortable and thoroughly enjoyable way of living” as in this sentence: “Since winning the lottery, he’s led the life of Riley.”

For most people who struggle financially, real wealth means being able to sleep in, live where they want, travel when they want, kick back or celebrate whenever they want, and not sweat about financial decisions. Being rich, indeed, means living the life of Riley -- carefree, comfortable and thoroughly enjoyable. But if being rich was that simple, people who come into lots of money in a short period of time would remain wealthy throughout their lives. And most don’t.

Take professional athletes, for example. Sports Illustrated says more than three out of every four NFL athletes face bankruptcy or serious financial stress within just TWO YEARS of departing the gridiron. The same grim reality is true for 60% of NBA players as well. The internet, as well, is full of fascinating tales of lottery winners who “blew through” prizes of $1 million, $5 million, $10 million and ended up a few years later back at work, living from paycheck to paycheck, and very often buried under debt. So what separates the winners from the losers? What secret is it that some people know, a secret that carries them from rich to mega-rich, while others choke and die financially almost right out of the starting gate?

Here it is. Consistently wealthy people know that passive money isn’t passive. What’s passive money? Money they didn’t sweat to earn. Money that makes new money. Portfolio income (dividends and interest) is a good example, as is rental property, a limited partnership, affiliate marketing, or an enterprise in which you invest but need not play an active role. Passive wealth can lift you from wealthy to mega-wealthy if you grasp just two words: “asset management.”

Wealthy people who want to see passive wealth multiply and expand manage their assets very carefully. These people are not simply “passive.” How do they do it? They look for professional help, people with proven track records and specialized education, to monitor their assets, to minimize the cost of inflation and taxes, to point out and avoid unnecessary expenses, and to invest new income wisely. And they work with those professionals in an open, trusting alliance. That’s what we do for upwardly mobile families, many of whom are wealthy and many more who are serious about becoming wealthy. We manage assets to build real wealth. If that sounds like the path for you, call us.

Sources: (1) Schmalbruch, Sarah. “There’s One Thing People Do Wrong When Pursuing Passive Money” Business Insider: Your Money. businessinsider.com. Dec. 11, 2014. (2) Pagliarini, Robert. “Why Athletes go Broke: The Myth of the Dumb Jock” CBS MoneyWatch. cbsnews.com. July 1, 2013.
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Investment advice is offered by Horter Investment Management, LLC, a Registered Investment Adviser. Insurance and annuity products are sold separately through TWP Financial. Securities transactions for Horter Investment Management clients are placed through Pershing Advisor Solutions, Trust Company of America, Jefferson National Monument Advisor, Fidelity, Security Benefit Life, ED&F Man Capital Markets and Wells Fargo Bank, N.A.

Good News: Healthcare Reform & Medicare

We are ready to sell plans for Covered California.

The main reason a person would get a plan on Covered California is if their income is below the guidelines on this chart.

If you qualify for a subsidy or are unsure if you qualify, please let us know, and we will help you make that determination and ultimately enroll you in a plan. Covered California cannot yet accept applications online, which means that everything needs to be done via paper applications. We can get the application to you by email, snail mail or you can come to our office to fill it out.

If you clearly make more that the income guidelines, we are recommending you wait until after November 1, 2013 to sign up for a new plan. The rates for the "off the exchange" plans are currently only available with two of the five carriers in California (Kaiser and Blue Shield). In November all the carriers should have their rates available and then we can look at the all the options to determine the best value for you.

As always, there is never an extra fee for our insurance services – the carriers pay us on their end.

Medicare Annual Election Period Begins!

October 15, 2013 was the beginning of the annual Medicare enrollment season. If you have a Medicare Advantage Plan this is the time where we can review your coverage and possibly change you to a new plan.

One big change is that Anthem unfortunately raised their PPO plan rates from $28 to $80 in Los Angeles County. If you have this plan, we can look at other options for you like a Medicare Supplement plan or an HMO Medicare Advantage plan.

If you have a Medicare Supplement plan and Part D (drug) plan, we can also change your Part D at this time. Humana has a new plan for $12.60 a month which could be a good choice if you do not take a lot of medications.

Keep In Touch

If you want to have us address your situation right now, please contact us. Otherwise our goal is to contact you before December 15 if you are under 65 and prior to December 7 if you are over 65 and on Medicare!

Investment advice is offered by Horter Investment Management, LLC, a Registered Investment Adviser. Insurance and annuity products are sold separately through TWP Financial. Securities transactions for Horter Investment Management clients are placed through Pershing Advisor Solutions, Trust Company of America, Jefferson National Monument Advisor, Fidelity, Security Benefit Life and FC Stone.