Loading...

Follow Four Columns of a Balanced Life on Feedspot

Continue with Google
Continue with Facebook
or

Valid

The stats are in for women and life insurance:

  • 44% of women have no life insurance
  • 60% of households are dual-income households
  • Nearly 4 in 10 mothers are primary breadwinners for their families
  • 5.2 million women are stay at home moms
  • Women earned 59.1% of degrees in North America
  • More than one in three women believes they do not have enough life insurance
  • 30% of women are out-earning their husbands, but wives’ life insurance ownership has not increased with their income
  • Salary.com calculated that the salary of a mother should be $162,581
  • 80% of consumers misjudge the cost of term life insurance

Welcome to my new series on Life Insurance For Women. In the introduction, I mentioned the reasons why women need insurance and how it empowers you.

I am going to interview Chad Viminitz from GoLife insurance   https://golife.ca/fourcolumns on the following ten topics:

  1. Women are being overcharged, a lot, for mortgage insurance – what you need to know!
  2. Why women talk themselves out of the life insurance they want/need?
  3. How to prepare for baby- 3 pieces to financial protection (will, mat leave savings, life insurance).
  4. Is underwriting for women different?
  5. A women’s perspective! Accessing life insurance in an industry designed by men.
  6. Is my life insurance at work enough?
  7. How does term insurance work? What are other types of life insurance?
  8. 5 things to know before buying life insurance online
  9. Stay at home mom’s and life insurance
  10. Don’t get oversold! Discovering your number

In this second interview, we will talk about why women talk themselves out of the life insurance they want/need?

What percentage of women don’t own life insurance?

Over 40% of women have no life insurance coverage and of those that do have coverage, they own 25% less than men. Most households are dual income, and with more women being the primary income earner (30% are out-earning their husbands), life insurance ownership for women has not kept pace. Women place higher importance of owning life insurance than men but the insurance industry has not adapted to giving women access to quality advice and products.

The fear of being overinsured is powerful but how do women talk themselves out of the protection they need?

Financial behavior and psychology are fascinating and when it comes to life insurance there are 3 main reasons:

  1. Underestimate their financial value
  2. Convince themselves that they will adapt (ie. work more, move, adjust lifestyle)
  3. Procrastinate and use “other” financial priorities as a reason to delay

Are there differences for stay-at-home mom’s vs. “working” mom’s?

Mom’s are worth a lot of financial value and just because it’s not reported on their tax return doesn’t mean it isn’t a significant number. Depending on which study you see the financial value of a stay at home parent ranges between $50,000-$120,000. Life insurance is replacement insurance. If there is financial value then getting good life insurance should be considered.

Why can our desire to make the “best” decision actually stop us from making a good one?

The fear of making a mistake is powerful motivator which stops many women from getting life insurance. We want to get the best life insurance and make a good decision, so it can be easy to delay or delegate the decision. Delegation is vital to survival when juggling career, kids, self, friends, family, finances, food and more. Though men view risk and death differently than most women, leaving many with less coverage. Striving to make the perfect decision leaves many families with financial risk and vulnerability. Life insurance is much more of an “art” than science and having some coverage in place is always better than having none.

Why is it important for women to take control of getting life insurance?

Delegation is a critical part of a successful relationship and part of that delegation is making financial decisions. Life insurance is often not the most interesting topic but very necessary, so we delegate the decision to our partner and they don’t want to deal with it either, so it gets pushed down the priority list or forgotten. So we end in a place where both parties say “we need life insurance” but don’t find the time to get it done. Men and women also approach life insurance from different perspectives, generally, women do a better job and one reason why women are over 65% of GoLife applications. That’s why it is important that women take control of the process to ensure the right financial protection is in place.

Are women getting access to the right advice?

The life insurance industry has done a poor job of educating Canadians and especially empowering women to have confidence in making a life insurance decision. Generally, women are much better at understanding risk management than men but women often defer to their partners about decisions about life insurance. Determining how much life insurance to get is straight forward, eliminate debts and protect income. For most women that means 8-12 times annual income, meaning for many Canadians that’s about $500-$1.2 million of life insurance coverage.

Read Full Article
  • Show original
  • .
  • Share
  • .
  • Favorite
  • .
  • Email
  • .
  • Add Tags 

In the personal health and fitness industry, the average burnout rate is three years. Health and fitness have been a huge part of David’s life. As a kid, he played hockey in the winter and soccer in the summer. In the fall of 2005, he fell in love with running and that led him to his passion for exercising. David focuses on women and helps them achieve their fitness goals and making it enjoyable at the same time. He has been in customer service for more than two decades and helps his clients lose unwanted fat and celebrate small victories.

Dave, welcome to my blog, please tell me a little about yourself?

Certified & Insured trainer coming on 10 years. I have always been an active person with Hockey and Soccer, but it wasn’t until I lost fat back in 2005. After that, I got hooked into learning about how I can help others transform their body and feel great.

Women over 40 who want to lose 40. I love that caption. Talk to me about this program?

Women over 40 who want to lose that unwanted extra fat are my niche. It’s funny because my aunt and cousin told me that I would relate to older women ( I am 35 now) because I am like a son. I am pleasant to be around and love to have fun. See I am only 5’2 and not very bulky, there is no real threat or intimidation. For years, women have put others before them and now it’s their turn. I help show them that getting fit, doesn’t have to be a bad thing.

Magazines are full of getting abs in six weeks, lose these many pounds in six weeks. Is this more of a marketing gimmick or realistic?

This is all a gimmick and unrealistic goals for both men and women. These magazines play on the emotions of the consumers and do a very good job. It if were that easy wouldn’t we all be in the best shape of our lives? There is no real trick to getting fit. Time + effort = results. Clients come to me all the time and it’s hard, to be honest with someone who is paying you. That being said, they are paying for the expertise, and not lies.

Losing weight is a combination of weight training and food. How important is food and the whole psychological and emotional part of the mind in this process?

Food = comfort. When you are sad, you eat, when you are stressed, you eat. Even when we are happy WE EAT. I use to think that it was 50% food and 50% exercise. I now say it is 100% on each side. Food is fuel, weight training helps BURN calories and gives you muscle (not the big bulky ones that we all think we will get from training 2 times per week) Carbs have a bad name and I try to inform my clients that there is good carbs (complex) and bad carbs (simple) and if we consume more of the good and less of the bad, we are doing great. Without going into great detail, we need to find our TDEE and BMR and those show us how many calories we should be consuming and how many to lose weight. Calories burned vs calories consumed = fat loss.

What is unique about you and why should my audience want you as their personal trainer?

It’s my approach to the whole fitness world, I believe that it is OK to eat cake, cookies, and wings. Yes, I said it, I preach about portion and moderation control. I bring fun and stories to our sessions with a none judgemental view. In an industry that produces trainers like a factory, the burn rate of trainers (especially In-Home) is 1-2 years. I have been doing this since 2010. You want results, you come to me.

You focus on women in your business. Any reason for this and why?

I enjoy showing women that they CAN do something. I always hear that they have tried in the past and never got fit, and I take great pride in showing them that they CAN.

 I like the fact that you offer online and video training. How does that work? What if someone is not the most technology-friendly person?

Online/Video training is great because it removes a lot of the barriers that sometimes arise when I sit with clients. Time and money. Online training IS different than video training. Online training is a weekly emailed out a program that is ONLY for the specific client (no copy cat programs). The client gets an excel sheet with a video link of me..

Read Full Article
  • Show original
  • .
  • Share
  • .
  • Favorite
  • .
  • Email
  • .
  • Add Tags 

Carolina Esguerra Colborn earned her MBA from the University of the Philippines, was a former jet setting executive. She immigrated to the United States, married and cruised North America in an RV. In a span of four years, Carolina and her husband cruised in their RV a hundred thousand miles across Canada, US and a few states in Mexico. Her book Carolina: Cruising to an American Dream talks about her experience traveling and her own experience to be a wife and keeping her identity. Carolina talks about her blog and about her life.

Carolina welcome and please tell me what is your blog all about? Who is your audience? What is your main message?

As the by-line of my blog says: “It’s not only about the obvious journeys, the travels past 70 that make the most sense; it’s also about the inner ones, the fine insights distilled by constant travels.“ I am talking to all travelers. I hope the younger ones are inspired to believe that traveling can be for a lifetime. I also hope the older ones can see how to transition to travels that are more comfortable, more convenient and more immersive. My main message is this: “You can travel until the end, even when you sway on your rocking chairs or get lost in the comforts of your armchairs. And you can tell us all your stories.”

What made you blog about cruising?

My wedding was in a private cruise ship on Lake Union in Washington. We thought it had to symbolize our cruising into a life of cruising, into a never-ending honeymoon. And what better way to remember all of the happiness than through a blog with words and pictures?

How does writing help you? (cover of my first book)

It helps me express my innermost thoughts and feelings about our wonderful cruising lifestyle.

Please tell me about your executive background. You are highly educated. Why give all that up and move to the US

I didn’t give up anything. I retired early, at 54. I thought I had given enough to my country. Having been a single parent for twenty years, I wanted to experience life with a lifetime partner. There is no divorce in the Philippines so it would have been impossible to find one there. And my first grandson was born in North America. By that time, I have had four sisters, three daughters, two granddaughters. I wanted to take care of a baby boy!

I am sure you have faced many challenges in life. Share some of them and how you have dealt with them and overcame them.

The major one really was the break-up of my marriage to the father of my children. That led me to focus on my career for twenty years, making sure my children were very well provided for. When they were all in careers of their own, I changed my focus and migrated to North America: Canada first where one daughter resides, the US next where another lives. I visit Australia, the home of my youngest daughter.

Give yourself some advice at 18 28, 38, 48, 58, and 68

At 18, one must study well. 28, marry well. 38, parent well. At 48, prepare for retirement. At 58, enjoy retirement. 68, decide what to leave your family or the world.

What has marriage taught you?

Life is better shared. It is easier when burdens are divided; more joyful when triumphs are joint.

Talk to me about some amazing countries, places, or cities you have visited and why.

We went in the fall to the Arctic Circle in our RV. The alpine tundra was a majestic carpet of yellow, orange, gold, and reds that blanketed hills and valleys. There was nary a soul and, even with the biting cold of the wind, we felt utmost serenity. It was like we were one of the first people discovering the paradise that is called earth. (Arctic Circle).

The post Carolina Colborn: American Cruising rv appeared first on Four Columns of a Balanced Life.

Read Full Article
  • Show original
  • .
  • Share
  • .
  • Favorite
  • .
  • Email
  • .
  • Add Tags 

Diana is a mom of two from Toronto. Diana’s Healthy Living started as a health blog many years ago and has since covered different content related to beauty, food, and travel.

I wrote about The Confederation Bridge on her piece Top Canadian Landmarks You Need To Visit.

The post The Confederation Bridge appeared first on Four Columns of a Balanced Life.

Read Full Article
  • Show original
  • .
  • Share
  • .
  • Favorite
  • .
  • Email
  • .
  • Add Tags 

Mar is a 30-something mom living in Toronto, with her husband and two daughters. To & Fro are her blog and the little corner of the world where she combines the two things that she loves the most – her family and the outdoors.

I wrote an article on Bruce Peninsula National Park for her piece on Best Family-Friendly Camping Destinations in Ontario.

The post Bruce Peninsula National Park appeared first on Four Columns of a Balanced Life.

Read Full Article
  • Show original
  • .
  • Share
  • .
  • Favorite
  • .
  • Email
  • .
  • Add Tags 
Sonia, it is a pleasure to interview you.  I want to know something important about you? 

Thank you for having me. I am a Nigerian born but have lived in the United Kingdom most of my life. I am a single mother – I have a 5-year-old daughter. I am the eldest out of 3 children, however, I have 2 older step sisters and 5 half sisters and 2 half brothers. I know, my family is very big. I have 2 disabilities from childhood. I am deaf, I wear 2 digital hearing aids, and my right arm was amputated after a car accident in Nigeria when I was 6 years old. Despite having these disabilities, I have a very positive approach about life and I have always been a fighter to have my own independence.

Walk me through what is life with Sonia all about? Who is your audience and why should we read it?  

My blog, Life With Sonia, is a lifestyle blog. I initial started blogging to share my personal experiences as I grow as a single parent and starting life all over again. Due to the fact that I have a 5-year-old who is about to start primary school, I feel this is when parenting and guidance actually start. When she was a baby, it was much easier and under my control, but now I feel there is going to be a lot more experiences that I have to be ready for and I want to share that with the world. My audience can be anyone really, from high school students to parents. I try to share posts about life lessons from when I was a teenager to the woman I am now. I have been through a lot growing up, which includes, bullying, racism, discrimination and having no confidence in myself at all. And now as a mother, I also want to give something to my daughter to go back to when she starts school and facing difficult times. Hopefully, someone could learn from it, and hopefully, someone will be inspired by it.

Life is not about finding yourself; it is about creating yourself.  Please comment?

We all have a gift. When you are transitioning from a toddler to an adult, you were finding yourself. You had dreams, you took classes, and you graduate. Now what? You start working, right? 5 years down the line, you realize this was not for you, and then you start finding and building another dream all over again.  At this point, you realize that you have wasted the last 10 years of your life finding and chasing a dream that wasn’t meant for you in the first place. Instead, you should have been working and building yourself to your expectation and not what your families, friends, and society expects from you.

We as a society are caught up in perfection. You talk about stop having this perfect body. What have you learned through the process?

The perfect body has become one of my top blog posts. A lot of the times, we have done things that are beyond imaginable to achieve this ‘perfect body’, and no matter what we do, are never satisfied with we have, we always want to go higher and do better. However, putting your health at risk should not be part of the deal. It’s okay to want to look have some curves, big breasts, big bums, etc. You can work on that naturally, or get cosmetics, but your body has a limit and we are all uniquely designed. With that being said, you can not achieve what you really want, without risking your health.

Gratitude in life is very important. How are you grateful on a daily basis?

Sometimes in life, you don’t need much to stay grateful. Knowing that I am one step closer to achieving my dreams and having my daughter telling me she loves me every day is how I stay grateful on a daily basis.

You write a lot about being a single parent. Name me some of the challenges?

Being a single parent is a challenge itself. I don’t think anyone plans to be a single parent, and want to deal with all the challenges that come along with it all alone. I have struggled with confidence in believing that I can do it all by myself. Managing budget finance was very challenging and it’s still is. I also struggle with self-care. As a parent, you want to give your child everything you have but to do that you have also think about yourself.

Talk to me about some of the tough times you have had to deal with in life. How did you overcome it?

When I was 3 months pregnant, I was diagnosed with HIV. It was the darkest times of my life. I was so confused, asked lots of questions. I was pregnant, and now being diagnosed with HIV? I thought the doctors got it wrong. It couldn’t have been me, no way. I cried a lot, every single night. There were times I had tried to commit suicide because I just couldn’t handle the news. The pregnancy was supposed to be one of the best things that have ever happened to me but now I was facing another challenge. My parents were not as supportive as I would have liked. I felt very lonely and depressed. Couldn’t eat or sleep. Asking myself what’s going to happen in the future? What if the baby has the virus? How’s her life going to be? There were so many negative thoughts going on. When my daughter was born, she was tested negative. That was a big weight off my shoulder. I took it upon myself to make sure my daughter knows that I love her and to create a better life for my daughter and myself. So, when she was 2 years old, I was decided to stop crying and fight hard and went back to further education in hopes to get a good job and live a better life.

Do you want to give yourself some advice on 17 and 27?

I wrote a blog post called ‘ Letter to my younger self’. In the post, I spoke about how things are finally coming together. I would tell her not to try to fit in and stop worrying about what other people think about her.

What have you learned through motherhood?

Motherhood has taught me many things about life. I have learned how powerful ‘Love’ is. You have not experienced any real love until you’re a parent.

Why should we visit Aberdeen and what are the good restaurants to eat at?

Aberdeen is a city that welcomes any culture from all over the world. The city is small but has everything to make you fall in love with it. The weather is not great throughout the year, however, with that being said, we appreciate the warm and sunny weather in the summer and white snow in the weather. In Aberdeen, we love to eat. The city center is filled with lots of restaurants, small or big. What I love about it is that we have different food from different cultures. So, everyone is welcome and feels at home.

The post Life With Sonia appeared first on Four Columns of a Balanced Life.

Read Full Article
  • Show original
  • .
  • Share
  • .
  • Favorite
  • .
  • Email
  • .
  • Add Tags 

Nena Hart is Director of Nursing at Maui Health Systems. She is also a mother to four amazing children, wife, married for 15 years and a blogger. Nena is real and vulnerable about how she changed her heart from a stone to a living, healing heart. She considers herself super blessed.

Nena, help me understand your broken heart and how it changed to a healing hart?

Well, my dad went to prison when I was 12 and I lost both of my grandmothers that following year. Something just broke in me, my heart, my gentleness, everything just turned to hurt and anger. Long story short, I was sent away after my behaviors escalated and I was expelled. I went to a Christian boarding school that after some controversy is closed now. I stayed there for 18 months. My heart only truly started to heal after I met my husband, Jed. It was God’s way of showing me the truth of his promise that he had something amazing for me. Something that I had believed wholeheartedly was not ever going to be possible for me because of all I had done.

Talk to me about converting your heart from stone to flesh?

I had great mentors and support in my life who have counseled me and gave me hard truths about life and how to use the natural consequences from my actions to grow. When I got married, I started to understand what love really meant, the choice, the humility. I started to realize what a selfish and self-focused person I had become. I started to realize this because I saw the kind of person my husband was and recognized I was not like him at all.

Growth and success in life need a lot of healing, introspection and will to deal with stuff. Explain how you did it and came out thriving?

I have tried really hard to realize (usually after the fact haha) that I am not right and don’t need to be. That I am not all-knowing. I ask people why they did things and intentionally choose not to judge their answer. I am quick to judge a person so it has to be something I stop myself from doing.

In your blog, you talk a lot about tools in dealing with life. I want to know more about these tools.

Reflection and asking why. Writing, journaling.

Cutting out sources of negativity – even movies and the news if needed (I don’t watch gory movies, I don’t watch the news, and I don’t read smutty gossip type magazines, period) it doesn’t take me anywhere I need to go mentally, or in my career, as a parent, wife etc. I try to only read helpful, encouraging, uplifting, positive materials.

Creating accountability and allowing people in who are worthy and want to build you up.

Literally leaving behind temptations, and situations that set you up to fail. Cutting ties as much as possible with those who bring you down and do not support your ultimate goals of growth (not your crazy goals of blowing all your money on weird investments) but people who are users, who need you to fail to make themselves feel better, or people who cannot love you in a healthy way. I created physical, emotional and mental distance from these people. Why – because I know I am NOT strong enough to be around people who are bad news. I had to start completely over.

Are religion and spirituality the same to you or is it different and why?

No, not really. I am a Christian. Religion to me is very confusing and not a relationship with Jesus, which is what I have. Spirituality can really be anything you want, the wind, the sky, I think it is very open to interpretation. What I am is saved by the Grace of God. It is VERY specific. It is not a debt I can repay. I have been restored from a dark place and it’s a personal experience that you can’t describe as do’s and don’ts. I think many people miss out on by being “religious” I also find that it is really easy to treat people badly when religion and rules are your guiding factor. That is not what Jesus wanted from us. It’s the opposite of what he preached and practiced on Earth.

Forgiveness….easy to write about…easy to talk about…but in reality, it is a process. Any comments?

I haven’t even fully achieved this yet. Sometimes an ugly memory will come up and I will feel resentment. I had expectations of people that they were not able to live up to, many unintentionally. My hurts are things I have to choose to let go of.

Humans are made to connect. There is a hole in each of us that can only be filled by connecting with people. We are leading busy lives and fail to connect. Does this alarm you?

It does sometimes when I realize my kids are in front of me begging me to play and I’m working or on my phone. I have to put it down and get on the floor face to face with them. Intentional parenting is something I’m really passionate about and I’m working on a separate blog about it!

How has marriage changed you?

Marriage has forced me to be a less selfish version of me. It has been so hard and so easy to watch 15 years go by. Every day, choose to continue loving. I refuse to keep score against my husband. I refuse to expect fairy-tale romance and Instagram worthy pictures. THAT IS NOT REAL LIFE. I won’t sit and feel sorry for myself because marriage is not perfect. I have read tons of books and done several courses and it is your perspective and your self-talk that determines the health of your marriage. It is not something your partner can “do” for you. It’s not their job to make you happy and you won’t “feel happy” being married. Not real. False expectations. That being said, my husband is the same (even though we are total opposites) so it makes it easy when we are both committed to being positive and making it work NO MATTER WHAT. We consider each others feeling’s and apologize. Practicing humility and repeating Ephesians 4:2 A LOT.

You are a mother of four children. What have you learned from this experience?

These people need you to be understanding Growing up is so hard. They need 1:1 time with you. They need you to not freak out when they tell you something that as a mom makes you want to DIE. They need you to be approachable and not run them all over God’s creation to every single thing that they get invited to. They need boundaries. They need No.



Give me some tips to have a successful marriage?

Be humble. Don’t keep score. Don’t be right. It’s not worth being right, and there is no right answer, and it probably doesn’t even matter. “Is my marriage worth winning this argument?” Coming from divorced parents, I would do just about anything to make my marriage work for my kids, but God gave me a great guy and that helps a lot.

Let us talk about how faith, food, finance, and family are important to you?

I LOVE FOOD. ALL FOOD. I love to bake with my kids and make them special things. It is a kind of comfort that speaks to me. I like to teach my oldest how to cook things. My mom used to let me “bake” experiments and it helped me be creative in the kitchen. Most of my recipes are experiments ha ha. Faith is what should drive my life and my actions and my parenting, and my marriage. It should be #1 in my life. I struggle with that because reading my Bible is really challenging for me. Prayer comes easy for me. Just talk to God. Ask him what he wants, tell him what you want. Apologize when you screw up. It is a relationship.

My husband and I are completely debt free except for my hefty school loans. It has been a painful process but 110% worth it. No credit cards. We follow Dave Ramsey and completed Financial Peace TWICE (I’m a slow learner and stubborn). it has probably saved our marriage more than twice. We don’t fight over money anymore. We use every dollar app and do a budget EVERY month. I’m a spender and our full-time income. I budget money on things I like to spend on (clothes and stuff for the kids mostly). It makes everything very simple and straight-forward. We pay with cash or debit. We have a small emergency fund and own a home (that we rent in another state) and our vehicle.

Photo Credit: Cherie Lynn Photography

The post Nena Hart: A Healing Heart appeared first on Four Columns of a Balanced Life.

Read Full Article
  • Show original
  • .
  • Share
  • .
  • Favorite
  • .
  • Email
  • .
  • Add Tags 
Ashley a pleasure to connect with you. Please tell my audience a little about you?

I was born and raised in Vancouver, Canada, and lived there my whole life until I decided to move halfway around the world to Edinburgh, Scotland back in September 2015. I enjoy traveling with my husband, Arek, and I document our journeys with photographs. On a daily basis, I spend time meditating first thing in the morning and always try my best to be grateful for the little things in order to try and live a balanced life.

What is one journey away about? How did it start? What is the main purpose of it?

One Journey Away is our platform to showcase our photography and videography, provide people with our travel tips & tricks, and let people in on our life in Scotland. It actually initially started just under my name as I wanted to start blogging and have a place (other than Instagram) to display my best photos, but Arek soon got into taking videos, so we rebranded into One Journey Away. We mainly just want to share with others the places we’ve been, including our own backyard.

You moved from Vancouver to Scotland. What motivated you to make the move and why Scotland?

I wanted to explore more of Europe, and with Vancouver being the westernmost city in Canada and the few holiday days I got over there (especially when compared to the UK), it made it difficult. I knew there was a 2-year “working holiday” visa that the Canadian and UK governments had put together for 18-30-year old’s, so I decided to take advantage of that. I knew that I didn’t want to move to London, and Scotland just seemed like the quainter, quieter northerly neighbor – like Canada! It also helped that I had a good friend living in Scotland at the time (also on the same visa) who raved about Edinburgh, so that reassured me that I was making the right decision.

Help me understand what you have learned from traveling? Has it changed you and in what ways?

Traveling has definitely opened my eyes to new cultures and different ways of life. It has taught me to be more open and receptive to others, whether that be in regards to others’ choices, lifestyles, or even their opinions. I wouldn’t say that traveling has drastically changed me, but it’s allowed me to learn a lot more about the world.

What has been the response to your blog? Is blogging all glamorous as it is made out to be or is it hard work?

The blog is barely 6 months old, so it’s still relatively new! At the moment, it’s mostly family and friends who are enjoying the content, and they’ve indicated that they thoroughly enjoy it. It’s definitely hard work to keep a blog afloat, especially if you work full-time as well! My commitment to the blog from the start was to be consistent, and for me, that means publishing new content once a week as that’s what’s manageable for me. It also means thinking ahead and ensuring I have a lineup of topics ready to go. While it is hard work, it’s also very enjoyable for me, and I hope that that will be what keeps the blog going in the long-term!

What advice would you give someone who wants to move from one country to another?

Go for it! Honestly. Travelling is amazing and it’s a privilege to be able to travel, but moving to another country and truly experiencing life in another country is something you can’t get from traveling alone. Travelling is like the tip of the iceberg and moving somewhere is the rest of the berg. A lot of people may have fears of not being able to find a place to live or secure a job, but I’ve always believed that everything will work out exactly the way it’s supposed to and when it’s supposed to. And this has always been true for me. The universe will reward you for leaping out of your comfort zone and everything will be okay.

Name me some interesting places you have visited and what is so special about it?

Right up there at the top of the list is definitely Meteora in Greece. It’s a rock formation and has monasteries sitting atop these pillars of rocks. I don’t remember how I stumbled across it online, but when I saw it, I knew I had to go there. And when we planned our holiday to Greece a number of years ago, we made sure to make time to visit Meteora. We sat atop one of the pillars to watch the sunset and it was just stunning.

The glaciers in Iceland were also amazing to see. We did a bit of a road trip around the south of Iceland at the beginning of 2018 and to see glaciers up close and personal is astounding. It seems a lot of people who venture to Iceland keep to the Golden Circle, but if you venture out just a little bit further east, you get to witness some glaciers. It’s just so cool to see something that is so, so many years in the making, and the size of them make you realize just how small we are!

What does women empowerment mean to you?

For me, women’s empowerment means that women have the right and power to make their own decisions and to be able to speak up and have their voices heard without being drowned out. In the West (perhaps with a few exceptions), we seem to be shifting towards an age where women can and do feel empowered to be equal to men and to break stereotypical gender roles.

Tell me something special about the city you live in? Why should we visit it and some good restaurants?

Edinburgh is by far the most beautiful European city I’ve ever seen. There is a charm to it that just can’t be explained. I don’t think you’ll find anybody who’s been to Edinburgh and didn’t like it. Few cities in the world – if any! – can say they have a castle on top of an extinct volcano on one end and another extinct volcano you can climb up on the other! There is so much history to Edinburgh, much of it captured in its stunning architecture, and having plenty of green spaces in the city center doesn’t hurt either!

I typically recommend the Royal Mile Tavern on the Royal Mile as a nice, casual pub to get in a traditional Scottish meal of haggis, neeps, and tatties, with a deep-fried Mars bar for dessert! It’s nothing fancy but has a great atmosphere in there. For any vegetarians or vegans, Henderson’s on Thistle Street is a great place to visit. And if you’re looking for something incredibly high-end, Martin Wishart on the Shore in the neighborhood of Leith is a Michelin-starred restaurant that lives up to its name.

How do you balance food, faith, finance, and family?

Family comes first, and in order to ensure we can visit Canada at least once a year, our finances have to be in order! I like to think we’re on top of our finances, wherein aside from the usual monthly bills, we typically only spend money on food. It’s important that we nourish ourselves well with nutritious, home-cooked meals. In terms of faith, I lean towards the spiritual side of the spectrum, where I believe that there is a higher power out there that will ensure my family is safe and all aspects of our life will work out exactly as it’s meant to.

Photo Credits: Jörg Angeli on Unsplash, Haggis w/neeps & tatties by

Read Full Article
  • Show original
  • .
  • Share
  • .
  • Favorite
  • .
  • Email
  • .
  • Add Tags 

Kim Boehlke is a mortgage agent/business development manager with Champion Mortgage Inc.  She has been in the financial services since 1995. She has been delivering mortgages since 2013 and has been a mortgage agent with Champion Mortgage Inc for 4 years.  I talk to her on the phone and via email as to what really is a mortgage agent, what is her unique value proposition, her core competence and how she helps her clients. I strongly recommend her for all your mortgage needs.

What is a mortgage agent?

Someone who can give you access to a variety of mortgage products. Mortgage agents are incentivized to keep in touch, to keep your rate competitive over the life of your mortgage. Even mid-term, it can make sense to move your mortgage.

What is the advantage of going to you versus my bank branch?

At champion.ca we have improved the process of obtaining a mortgage through an online application portal, document-management services, automation, web-based information delivery systems, and online meetings. These technological tools speed up delivery times and increase the accuracy and amount of communication and education clients receive.

Check out my google reviews. The first link is in video form. The second takes you to our Mississauga and Guelph Google Review pages.

https://youtu.be/wFhDYQVjD8M

I educate on options, I prepare as much as possible for anything unexpected; I bring it together and make it happen.

Do I get better rates through you?

The rate is a simple feature of the mortgage. You get a competitive rate through me. I try to get clients to examine the other features. Mortgages sold on rate are often lacking in service and can sometimes not be what you think, such as mortgages with astronomical penalties when the mortgage is broken mid-term.

What do I need to do to qualify for a mortgage?

I like to have about a 10-minute call to get a sense of what you want to do. Then it’s filling out an application and send me your ID and income documents.

I book another call which can be 10 minutes or as long as you need. You get your pre-approval and you are ready to go!

How long must I stay in the same job? What about being self-employed?

There are no hard and fast rules on these. It’s case by case depending on credit and down payment and the rules and programs are somewhat fluid. The shorter your time out of school, the more scrutiny there will be. Put in that condition of financing and we will see what we can do.

For those who do not have a great credit rating do they have to pay a higher rate?

In the current environment, there are certain FICO scores that are magic, 600, 620, 650, 720 are a few that come to mind. These give you access to certain products and rates depending on what you are doing. Below 600 will mean higher rates for sure. A little known fact is that when consumers do a soft pull of their score (a credit pull that does not show up as an inquiry), it is a different number, then when we do a credit pull for a mortgage inquiry. However, the two numbers, though not exactly the same, are usually not too far off in my experience. It’s not known exactly how Equifax calculates their numbers so I don’t know why the numbers are different.

Do you go and visit your client or do we have to come to you?

I do love visiting clients, especially to sign those last papers. However, one of the extremely efficient options I have with champion.ca is to meet online, share my computer screen and have a clear and effective meeting that way. I often have later in the evening appointments when the little ones are tucked in, to be able to focus.

Kim can be contacted at kim@champion.com, 647.847.1309 or toll-free at 877.341.1299 x 802,  Mortgage Agent and Champion Mortgage Inc. 10212.

Photo Credits: Tom Rumble on 

Read Full Article
  • Show original
  • .
  • Share
  • .
  • Favorite
  • .
  • Email
  • .
  • Add Tags 

Welcome to my new series on Life Insurance For Women. In the introduction, I mentioned the reasons why women need insurance and how it empowers you.

I am going to interview Chad Viminitz from GoLife insurance   https://golife.ca/fourcolumns on the following ten topics:

  1. Women are being overcharged, a lot, for mortgage insurance – what you need to know!
  2. Why women talk themselves out of the life insurance they want/need?
  3. How to prepare for baby- 3 pieces to financial protection (will, mat leave savings, life insurance).
  4. Is underwriting for women different?
  5. A women’s perspective! Accessing life insurance in an industry designed by men.
  6. Is my life insurance at work enough?
  7. How does term insurance work? What are other types of life insurance?
  8. 5 things to know before buying life insurance online
  9. Stay at home mom’s and life insurance
  10. Don’t get oversold! Discovering your number

Chad began his career as an advisor in Saskatoon in 1998, then detoured into management for a few years. He returned to his true passion, working with clients, in 2005 when he joined RTR Advisory Group. Chad is passionate about ensuring that the financial future and well-being of his clients is secure. Chad has tailored GoLife to meet the unique challenges that women face.

Committed to excellence and education, Chad holds both his Certified Financial Planner (CFP) and Financial Management Advisor (Wealth Management) designations. Chad achieved his Bachelor of Commerce from the University of Saskatchewan where he majored in finance. Chad is the author of “Money Assassins – How they stole your financial freedom and how you can get it back.” and has written for a variety of other financial publications.  Chad is also a member of The Financial Advisors Association of Canada (Advocis).

What is mortgage insurance?

When you apply and get a mortgage, the bank or lender will ask if you would like to have your mortgage paid off if you die. Given your home is often the largest “investment” you’ll make, people say “Yes”.  It is understandable that no one wants to leave their family with that type of debt. What people are not told is that they are buying creditor insurance and not a life insurance policy, and the differences are big for those wanting to get the best life insurance policy for their mortgage.

Can you highlight 3 differences between mortgage insurance/creditor insurance and a personal term life insurance policy?

Control: The beneficiary of the mortgage insurance is the bank, not your family. With a personally owned policy, your family gets the money and they can decide what the best financial decision is. You don’t own mortgage insurance meaning if you move or have a health change your coverage may not be renewed or be in place. You are the owner of a term life insurance policy and it goes where you go.

Underwriting: With mortgage insurance, you don’t even know if you are covered. It’s only after you die that mortgage insurance looks into your medical history, called post-claim underwriting. A good life insurance policy completes all the underwriting up front, giving you confidence that your protection is actually in place.

Cost: Mortgage insurance costs more, especially for women. Women often pay double, or more, for mortgage insurance compared to a personally owned term insurance policy.

Why are women being overcharged so much?

In most cases, women are being charged in excessive of 100% or more. Mortgage (creditor) insurance pricing does not distinguish between men and women, so everyone is lumped in together. Both men and women are paying too much but women even more so.  Here is an example:

  • 37-year-old women (non-smoker)
  • $500,000 mortgage
  • $46 per month (major Canadian bank mortgage insurance rate)
  • $19 per month (10-year term life insurance policy, from Go Life’s site)

That’s 142% more than she should be, for an inferior product. Basically, women are subsidizing men’s mortality rates and older mortgage holders. A term life insurance policy is a better and cheaper choice for women when compared to creditor insurance.

There is a history of women being treated unfairly by lenders, can you explain?

There was a time when banks and lenders would only lend money based on the man or husband’s income, even if the women or wife was working. Then over the decade’s lenders began lending higher amounts based on a women’s income and finally in the 1970s lenders started giving equal weight to a women’s income. It’s tough for many women to connect with the life insurance industry because historically the industry has focused on the man being the primary income earner. That, of course, is outdated and the industry has been slow to adapt, one reason is the average age of an insurance agent today is 60 and mainly male.

If you have mortgage insurance at the bank, can you switch?

Yes, there is no cost to canceling mortgage insurance with the bank. You can cancel mortgage insurance at any time, you don’t have to wait till your mortgage renewal. Here are the 3 steps to change your coverage:

  1. Apply for a personal term life insurance policy
  2. Receive your approved personal policy
  3. Contact the bank and ask them to cancel your mortgage life insurance.

It’s important to note that having mortgage coverage with your lender/bank is not a requirement for getting a mortgage. Mortgage insurance can sometimes be confused with CMHC, mortgage default insurance, which is required when you buy a house unless you have a down payment of at least 20%.

What happens to mortgage insurance in the case of divorce?

When building a financial plan or buying financial products I recommend choosing options that give you the most control. You own and control a personal life insurance policy; it belongs to you. If you have mortgage insurance at the bank and you have to move or sell the house, your coverage does not go with you. Also remember, the bank is the beneficiary but with a personal policy you decide who the beneficiary is and can change it to your children, other family member or a new relationship.

Why aren’t more women buying personally owned policies to cover their mortgage?

For most purchases, the better option is usually not the..

Read Full Article

Read for later

Articles marked as Favorite are saved for later viewing.
close
  • Show original
  • .
  • Share
  • .
  • Favorite
  • .
  • Email
  • .
  • Add Tags 

Separate tags by commas
To access this feature, please upgrade your account.
Start your free month
Free Preview