Commissions can be charged by real estate agents, brokers, leasing agents – anyone selling anything. Learn more here about types of commissions and how you can get the best deal.
Ilyce kicks off the show with new information on the Medicare prescription drug plan. Ilyce then takes calls on topics from double commissions to handling surrendered annuities for an elderly parent. As of November 15, 2005, you can elect into a medicare drug plan. Each company typically provides 3 plans at 3 different prices points with different coverage. Here's some of the Medicare information that was discussed on the show:
Today, Medicare participants receive 75 percent of drug costs, after they pay the $250 deductible up to $2,250 in total spending. The plan currently pays 95 percent of drug costs after the participant spends a total of $3,600 in out of pocket expenses. The new plans are supposed to do better. A quick look at the Georgia drug plans that are available show that most offer 3 tiers, with the monthly premiums ranging from $17 to $62.29. The plans cover anywhere from 77 to 99 of the top 100 drugs. Most include tiered co-pays for drugs, which haven't yet been spelled out in the literature. Enrollment begins November 15, 2005, and coverage begins January 1, 2006, or the first day of the month after you sign up. If you currently get drug benefits from an outside insurance source (like a job you hold), there isn't a financial incentive to sign up now. But, if you don't have outside drug benefits, then the government wants you to sign up now. If you sign up later, the premiums will rise. For more information, check out www.cms.hhs.gov/map/map.asp. You can check out any state's plans from this website.
When relocating to a new city, should you buy or rent? It depends on how long you will live in your new city. If you're relocating for only a short time, it's better to rent a home. Buying may make sense if you buy a fixer upper and repair it to increase its value.
Talk about complex real estate transactions! A reader is considering selling a home to a buyer with bad credit and a nice home. Is there a way for them to simply swap homes and avoid real estate commissions?
When you're buying life insurance you have two main choices: whole life or term life. Another phrase for whole life insurance is universal life insurance. When you buy whole life insurance you pay the insurance agent a commission upfront. Term life insurance works differently -- you can buy a new policy every year or pay a consistent rate for the entire duration of the policy. Learn about the differences between whole life and term life insurance.
For sale by owner is one way to try selling property. When you choose to sell your property for sale by owner, you don't hire a real estate agent to help you. The buyer and the seller can save 6 percent commissions that would otherwise go to a real estate agency. But who gets the for sale by owner commission savings? A buyer of a for sale by owner property should not enter the transaction expecting to get a lower price.
A real estate deal an agent presented to a seller looked unusual, but a good real estate attorney would make sure the deal is legitimate. Ilyce advises a reader who is selling their farm and was approached by his real estate agent with an unusual deal. A real estate attorney will examine the deal and make sure the real estate agent's offer is legitimate.