Who's Buying Britain's Farmland?

Twenty-twelve could be considered something of a landmark year for agriculture; the price of farmland has escalated to such an extent that some commentators have hailed it ‘a better investment than a Mayfair apartment’.

In actual fact, the price is said to have trebled over the last decade to an average of £8,900 per acre – which might be some welcome good news for those in farming.

With the value of land increasing so much, farmers ought to make doubly sure that their own fields, sheds and farm buildings are adequately protected by comprehensive farm insurance policies, as should any new land owners – of whom there are a lot. As a consequence of rising farmland values and the advantages associated with owning it, British farmland has caught the attention of many foreign investors.

Yet with a shortage of farmland entering the market (one agent estimates just 100,000 acres will change hands in the South West this year), who exactly is buying our farmland and more to the point, why?

Who are the new buyers?

According to estate agents, the majority of sales are made between British farmers; however many have seen an influx of City bankers and investors from foreign climes making enquiries. Most notably are prospective buyers from Italy and Greece (surprising, given the effects of the Euro crisis) – plus investors from India and China.

There appears to be a split between investors who hope to simply cash in on land values by selling in the not-too-distant future and ‘lifestyle’ buyers who want to ‘procure social status’. Owning a piece of England is considered very desirable in China, for example and sales are highest in the south west of England.

Why are they buying British farmland?

Not only has the value of British farmland trebled over the last ten years, but industry experts expect it to increase by a further third during the next five years. Therefore it’s fair to say that farmland could be considered a lucrative investment right now. Some dismiss it as simply the ‘movement of capital between countries’, but others have emphasised the real benefits to owning British farmland.

Like gold, farmland is deemed a ‘safe-haven’ asset class but with added bonuses, as it offers returns of two – three per cent per annum, if not more due to the rising price of commodities. What’s more, the government applies tax breaks to this sort of land and exempts it from inheritance tax – provided the land is used as a farm.

How are they managing it?

Excluding British farmers, some 30 per cent of the new buyers will not be based on the farm itself. Many live in the city, where they work all week or are situated overseas. In order to maintain the farmland, they will hire a local farmer to manage the acres on their behalf. With any luck, their experienced farm manager will be aware of the requirement for reputable insurance – particularly if the land is left unoccupied at times.

Clearly, foreign investors are injecting much needed funds into the economy, but the debate rages on about the lack of available land for those that genuinely need it for their livelihood. However, it’s unlikely this trend will change in the short-term, if predictions about land values come to fruition.

Know Different Types of Insurance Policies

You may be a twenty years dude or a 50+ old chap, a rich man or a poor fellow, a professional or a student; one thing is common to all the stage that you may be in – buying insurance. It is something that gives you a peace of mind that whatever danger suddenly erupts in your life, you will always be taken good care of. Here are some different types of insurance that you must know before investing in any one of them.

Home Insurance: Every home owner must go for a home insurance coverage to protect his nest from unfortunate happenings. If you consult an insurance agent, he will make an assessment of how much it will cost to get the house rebuilt with the same quality materials. The regular premium that you have to pay for your insurance buy depends on the current valuation of your house.

Car Insurance: It is one of the most common insurances availed worldwide. It is quite natural for you to make sure that all coverage is met. However, it may not be a necessity if your car is fully paid for. If you still decide to get full coverage on such car, it may cost more than what you have spent for your car buy. So, only fulfill the bare minimum as required by the state you are living in.

Life Insurance: This is most probably the very first choice for majority of the insurance buyers. You can put the name of the nominee in your insurance form. In event of your sudden demise before completion of the insurance term, money will be handed over to the nominee. Life insurance is really good because it always ensures that your kids will be under best of care even after your untimely death. Your spouse will get enough for maintenance of house.

Health Insurance: The title says it all. Such insurance provides coverage for surgical expenses, medicines etc. You can buy a single health insurance or family health insurance. Needless to say, the second type requires you to pay more as premium.

Renter Insurance: It is not a familiar type for most of the laymen. Whether you own a home or not, you can always avail this insurance to protect your belongings from some unforeseen happenings. If your house or some of your precious possessions are damaged due to fire or other calamities or burglarized, this insurance will help you recover a part of what have got lost. Even many landlords now want their renters have such coverage.

How Useful is a Term Life Insurance Quote?

It is a fact that all of us do not know what’s going to happen in the future. This is definitely true, however the pessimists  among us discern that the uncertainty we all experience in the future is what exactly the insurance agents are preying on; but, among the most rational and clear-cut policies available is the term life insurance. Due to the many information floating around the corner regarding term life insurance – specially term life insurance quotes, it is imperative to comprehend how it works and how it befits to people.

The Definition of Term Insurance

Certainly,  insurance is a significant thing to obtain for all aspects of our life: may it be car, health or home. It is a form of securing our lives. The term life insurance is the first step towards making out life insurance quotes.  In real meaning, this kind of insurance gives coverage only for a limited amount of time, along with fixed rate payments made until the policy matures. When that happens, it would based on the holder of the policy whether to renew or choose differently.  This type of policy varies from the usual policies since this policy is only temporary and actually not for life. For instance, if the term set is 30 years, so after 30 years the coverage would cease and only when the policy holder dies within the fixed period which the insurer is responsible to expend.

Why Term Life Insurance Quote  is The Best Deal

Getting a quote is not that tough if you know what you exactly desire. Determining your budget as well as your coverage will mean anything to your term insurance. It is simple to put the fact that term life insurance quote constantly stands out as  the best deal against the many options of life covers available on the market.  It’s because of two major reasons: first is the fact that payments are constantly affordable. The second one is the cover integrates each financial obligations that are greatly affected during the death events.  The lists of obligations frequently include consumer debt which possibly exists, medical care costs for families or dependents, the mortgage and the university education costs for dependents. Even when you obtain an insurance quote rapidly, it is imperative to carefully look at the lists and ensure that everything will go beyond the conventional costs of the funeral.

Consequently, the key benefit is not just the reasonably priced fixed payments on the life span of the insurance policy, but the piece of information that virtually exists on every expenditure that may unenthusiastically influence the beneficiaries and family of the policy insured is covered.

The term life insurance quote is helpful in any aspects of our lives. It also helps the holder of the policy to take pleasure of a life insurance policy benefit without needing to pay large installments. In addition to, the family of the policyholder will enjoy the financial stability being provided by the term life insurance quote for term life insurance is a solid  plan.

How to Care for an Aging Parent during These Tough Economic Times

For many, a peculiar role reversal happens when they hit middle age. Aside from the aching bones, lack of energy and planning for a much-needed retirement trip; many in their 40s, 50s and 60s are faced with caring for an aging parent. A recent MetLife survey found that nearly 10 million adults over 50 are emotionally and financially supporting an aging parent, a number that has steadily increased over the past 20 years. As an older or middle-aged adult yourself, you’re torn between providing an acceptable level of care while planning your own retirement or saving for your children’s future. With careful planning, it’s possible to care for an aging parent as the country continues to struggle through an economic downturn.

Sit Down for “The Talk”

As an adolescent, you probably dreaded the day you were embarrassingly forced to suffer through “the talk.” It’s now your turn to have a frank and open discussion with your parents, but this time about their finances and personal papers. Having an open and honest relationship with your parents helps, but this doesn’t necessarily mean they’ll be thrilled to discuss a normally taboo subject with their grown children. It’s crucial to sit your parents down and go over their monthly expenses, benefits and income. Inquire if they’ve considered long-term care insurance, or if they’ve spoken to their lender about a reverse mortgage.  Also, inquire about any important legal or financial documents necessary to prepare a will or trust, including bank statements, brokerage accounts and life insurance policies.

Keeping Your Parents at Home vs. a Nursing Home Environment

Despite the few minor inconveniences, you’ve decided to adopt the “it takes a village” philosophy by asking your aging parents to move in. Before you assume this is the most financially sound option, keep in mind the level of care your parents require and if they could receive stipends or benefits to help pay for a nursing home facility.  Your parent’s health might not be a factor now, but in a few years one or both could require a live-in nurse, and these professionals charge at least $20/hour. Aside from this, you must take in the emotional and logistical aspects of asking your children to share their home with their grandparents. Once again, it’s important to sit down with your parents and discuss their wishes, and speak to an attorney or Medicaid representative to learn about any assistance available to help cover the cost of in-home help or nursing home facilities.

Understand There Is Help Available

The Medicare and Medicaid landscape is forever evolving, and don’t assume that just because your parents are eligible for Medicare means they’re nursing home bills are paid for. In many cases, a parent must spend down the majority of their assets to become eligible for Medicaid, which then helps pay for the cost of private nurses or residential facilities. If you cannot completely count on Medicare or your parent’s savings, don’t hesitate to research community or state assistance programs designed to help individuals 65 and over. A great place to learn about the various income or age-based programs available is your county’s department of aging. For instance, your parents could be eligible to receive low-cost meals, help with their energy bills or a stipend to help cover the cost of prescriptions or other necessary medical equipment. There is plenty of help out there; you just have to convince your self-sufficient parents to look into it.

Learn About Long-Term Care Insurance

As a caregiver, it’s important to understand your limitations, and to realize there will come a day when you cannot physically, or financially, care for your parents. Instead of depleting you or your parent’s savings and investments, talk to them about speaking to reputable long term care insurance companies.  These policies pay for extended care in the unfortunate event your parents are no longer able to care for themselves. Several plans are affordable, and provide your parents with security, stability and most importantly, peace of mind going into the future.

The financial, physical and emotional stress of caring for a parent during any economic climate is too much for many to cope with. If you’re faced with supporting or assisting an aging parent, don’t hesitate to seek help for yourself as well. 

Betty Johnson is a licensed social worker and guest blogger. She’s currently revamping her county’s department on disability and aging in hopes of making more assistance readily available to her community’s senior members.

Living Longer than Expected and the Presidential Election

It can be a good quandary. Someone buys life insurance in case something unforeseen happens, or the inevitable and their heirs are left with a valuable asset. In today’s trying economic times, and as people live longer than previously expected, a life settlement may become the best choice for someone to live an independent lifestyle in their golden years.

Life or sometimes known as viatical settlement  is one where someone sells their life insurance policy to a Life Settlements provider for an amount in-between the cash surrender value and the overall death benefit for an amount to be used as the individual sees fit. The Life Settlements Provider then pays the monthly fees for the insurance policy and collects from the policy when the time is due.

The past decade has not been kind to many who were counting on high interest rates from savings, or counting on equities in such instruments as an IRA or 401K. Many projections have left the elderly with far less finances at present than they believed they would be able to appreciate when they first started saving.

The upcoming election and its effect on health care is of significant interest to seniors, as many are faced or will be faced with daunting debt from medical bills. They have a choice between Barak Obama’s Affordable Care Act, or Mitt Romney’s desire to repeal and replace the law.
Under the Affordable Care Act, more citizens of the United States will have some form of insurance than under Romney’s plan. The Affordable Care Act covers more of those in the lower income brackets. The Affordable Care Act is projected to give a tax credit of $3900-$4500 to an estimated 20 million eligible by 2016. Under Romney’s plan, 10 million will be eligible for a tax deduction of $1900-$2600.
Of significant interest to the elderly is the Affordable Care Act’s ban on restrictions of lifetime or annual benefits. The older one gets, the closer they may be towards exhausting their lifetime allotment. This ban does not exist under Romney’s plan.
Obama’s plan for payment involves greater focus on preventative care and pay-for-performance incentives. Romney’s plan will shift more of the burden of health care to the states. He also wishes to put a cap on non-economic damages in malpractice lawsuits.
The next President will have a great influence on savings for the elderly in regards to their health care, as well as influencing the overall economy to improve or decline.

Tips On Getting The Right Insurance for Your Business

Did you hear the one about the business owner whose premises went up in flames? Dang, he thought. Never mind. The business is insured. She’ll be right.

He was insured- that much was true. He was not, unfortunately, insured against fire.

His business? Paper products.

Having insurance is one thing, having the right kind of insurance another entirely. In order to choose the insurance that best suits your business, and will ensure you aren’t left in the cold after a catastrophe, you need to take a close look at the kinds of incidents your business is most vulnerable to. The chap peddling paper products should have made Property Cover his number one priority.  Property cover insures against damage to buildings, contents, and stock caused by fire.

Hmm, you think. I run a web design business. My office is in city skyscraper. I’ve never heard of anyone in my building losing their merchandise or equipment due to property damage. In that case, you can perhaps give Property Cover a wide berth without losing too much sleep at night. The most relevant insurance coverage for your business is Computers and Electronic Coverage, which will ensure that you’re covered in the event of theft, accidental breakdown, fire, and interruptions to business.

Some businesses, for a variety of reasons, are more vulnerable to employee theft or dishonesty than others. Perhaps you have a large turnover of staff. Maybe your employees work without supervision around sensitive company information or cash registers. Maybe they even have access to bank account details. If this a potential source of concern for your business, you might consider  Employee Dishonesty coverage which Mckenzie Ross offer. This insures you against employee theft and fraud.

Taking a bit of time to work out what you need from your business insurance is a simple way to safeguard against the kinds of scenarios that have the potential to railroad your business. To learn more, visit www.mckenzieross.com.au.

The Most Importan but Often Ignored Insurance Product: Food Insurance

We protect our health, our vehicles, our boats, our motorcycles, our homes, and even our jewelry with insurance in the event of a health issue, accident, or theft. When we think of insurance, we often think about these items – our valued material possessions, and our health, because of the high cost of health care. Even with all this insurance available, there is one that we often ignore, or maybe doesn’t even cross our minds, and that is emergency food storage as insurance.

Who would think that we have to insure the food? We may even take it for granted that food will always be available. We may know that an unexpected disaster, whether natural or man-caused, but make the mistake of “assuming” that water and food will be made available by someone. Well, in an emergency situation, the only one you can depend on is yourself. So, the way you insure that your belongings are safe, you should invest in food insurance in order for you and your family’s survival.

Food Insurance Offers Security

Basically, food insurance protects you in the event of a disaster. In a disaster, there is no guarantee that you will be able to find food or safe drinking water. Think of all the other people that will be doing the same. It may become almost impossible to find adequate food that is not intoxicated for you and your family.

Having emergency food storage as insurance, you can guarantee that your chances of survival during a disaster will increase. Remember, we can live without shelter, but we can’t live without water and food for very long. By investing early in food storage, you will be investing in your future.

Food Insurance Offers Peace of Mind

It can be difficult, time consuming, and expensive to build a supply of food and water. When looking into practicing food insurance for your survival, it will give you and your family peace of mind. You will know that when and if a disaster strikes, you will be able to survive. The material things can always be replaced. A house can be rebuilt. A car can be fixed or replaced. Jewelry can be replaced. One thing that can’t be replaced is your life.

Food Insurance Made Easy

There are many companies that offer easy plans for you to receive freeze-dried and pre-packaged food and water for survival. This is a convenient and wise investment – investing in yourself with food insurance. Emergency food storage as insurance is the protection you need more than anything.

You can start slow and build your food storage, either with survival food companies, or cooking and storing your own food. It doesn’t matter your plan, if you do a little each week, or every other week, you will soon have abundance in food and water storage with just a little effort. This little effort could save your life and your family’s life.

Top Five Money Saving Tips on Life Insurance Premiums

Opting for a Life Insurance plan is always a sensitive issue. Few people feel it is mandatory whereas others think it is not necessary; however it does leave you safe in the knowledge that your family are financially secure after you’re gone. Friends and relatives might come forward to give moral support but generally do not turn up regarding money matters. This is a common scenario in today’s era.

tips following which you can save money on life insurance premiums:

Hence Life Insurance is the only solution to the above problem. It provides financial assistance to your family and off-springs so that they can succeed and fulfil their dreams in your absence.

Payment Protection Insurance (PPI) is another type of insurance which can be utilised during a financial crisis or unexpected mishap. PPI claims is used to pay loans during emergencies or at a time when you are unable to make your payments. In cases such as a person loses his job, is bedridden due to an accident or prolonged illness or in the worst case, if a person has passed away. During such crises the PPI claims take over the responsibilities to pay your loan payments on time and help you to avoid paying penalties due to delay.

Here are the top five tips following which you can save money on life insurance premiums:

Low investment is not always the best one:

The customer must always be sure of the policy before choosing one. It must be noted that the plan that has the least investment is not always the right choice. Accurate calculations must be done and analysis must be made as to whether your investment is in the right hands and whether you can achieve the monthly payments.

Tax deductions:

This is another important factor of consideration while you choose your insurance company as well as the policy. Deductions of tax are dependent on the proposal chosen. Always take the plan that best suits and satisfies your necessities. Also the tax regarding the premiums of the PPI is deductible. Here you can claim the tax paid.

No-load policies:

No load policies are insurance plans with low cost. As mentioned above a detailed study regarding the proposal is mandatory. These are generally purchased from advisors. These advisors take the complete fee at once and do not depend on commissions.

Guaranteed Policy:

Deciding on the strategy that best benefits you is the key goal. Do not choose a guaranteed issue policy if you do not need it because you will be paying high premiums.

Extend you policy:

If you feel your requirement has changed then add proposals to your existing plan. Expanding your plan is more beneficial than buying a new one.