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Kevin Mercadante

A technological tool at your fingertips is opening new doors for real estate investors. Real estate crowdfunding sites are changing the game. We’ll tell you about the top 5 best real estate crowdfunding sites that stand out from the crowd.

Best Real Estate Crowdfunding Sites

Commercial real estate investments are essential for a well-rounded real estate portfolio. Investors aim to have diversified portfolios to reduce the risks of putting all their eggs in one basket. Crowdfunding is opening doors and offering new real estate investors and even small real estate investors the opportunity to dive into commercial real estate. It gives investors the ability to carefully choose which deals he or she participates in. In each case, the crowdfunding site analyzes and evaluates the available opportunities, offering investors a chance to select from fully “vetted” deals.

We reviewed nearly a dozen real estate crowdfunding sites. Since real estate crowdfunding is fairly new, we’ve approached our review from the standpoint of a small investor looking to diversify into commercial real estate investments for the first time. We looked at the following to narrow down our top 5 picks:

  • Ease of platform use
  • Investment options presented
  • Fees
  • Required initial minimum investment
  • Simplicity of investment selection
  • Availability of managed investment options
  • Reviews by third parties

Our Findings At-a-glance

  • Best for new and small investors: Fundrise
  • Best for more advanced investors: Realty Mogul
  • Best for investors looking for lower risk commercial real estate deals: PeerStreet
  • Best for managed investment options: Fundrise
  • Best site for low fees: CrowdStreet (no fees charged)
  • Best for single property investment: RealtyShares

Fundrise took the top spot in our analysis, and it really wasn’t even close. The platform offers too many advantages over its competitors, including:

  • A minimum initial investment of just $500
  • Availability of both taxable accounts and self-directed IRAs
  • No requirement to be an accredited investor
  • Select from eREITs for equity investments, or eFunds for debt investments
  • Goals-based investment combinations
  • A low annual fee
  • Some liquidity

Fundrise is the perfect real estate crowdfunding site for new investors to cut their teeth on. Once you’re comfortable with the process, you can move some of your real estate allocation to another platform to select individual deals that meet your preferences. Learn more about Fundrise and our other top picks in our summaries below.

 

The Best Real Estate Crowdfunding Sites

1. Fundrise

 Fundrise is a bit different than the other sites in that it’s a REIT platform. More specifically, they offer electronic real estate investment trusts, commonly known as eREITs. The difference between REITs and eREITs is that eREITs are only available through Fundrise and fees are low at just 1% per year. You don’t have to be an accredited investor to invest on Fundrise. However, one downside is that since eREITs aren’t publicly traded, they aren’t particularly liquid.

Fundrise also offers electronic funds, or eFunds. These are mostly like mutual funds for real estate but they’re set up as partnerships. It saves the investor on double taxation. Fundrise offers eFunds commission-free. But one important difference from eREITs–which are set up primarily to generate income–is that eFunds mostly focus on growth. That said, Fundrise offers three different goals-based investing styles:

  • Supplemental income–invested primarily in debt deals
  • Balanced investing–invested in both debt and equity through eFunds and eREITs
  • Long-term growth–invested primarily in equity

Fundrise requires just $500 as a minimum initial investment. Accounts available include taxable accounts and self-directed IRAs. Generally speaking, investments are expected to last five years, before return of investing capital.

Another Fundrise advantage is that the platform does offer limited liquidity. After a 60-day waiting period, you may obtain liquidity monthly. There are limits, but it’s more generous than competing sites.

2. Realty Mogul

In the number two spot, we like Realty Mogul. It isn’t as new investor-friendly as Fundrise, but it has a lot to offer for investors who are looking to spread their real estate wings. It’s also one of the largest and best known sites in the real estate crowdfunding space.

Realty Mogul offers the full range of real estate opportunities, including both commercial and residential properties, as well as single-family investment homes. Your investment can be either debt or equity related. Debt investments pay monthly distributions, while equity investments are paid on a quarterly basis. Realty Mogul also offers regular taxable accounts, and you can invest in the platform through self-directed IRAs held by third-party trustees.

We like the low minimum initial investment of $1,000, as well as the very low annual fees (less than 1%). Typical investment terms run from six months to 10 years, though debt investments rarely exceed 12 months. If you get comfortable with Fundrise, Realty Mogul could be the next step in the process.

As is typical with real estate crowdfunding platforms, you must be an accredited investor. However, there is an exception. Realty Mogul offers two real estate investment trusts you can invest in that do not require you to be accredited.

3. PeerStreet

PeerStreet focuses investments on real estate loans, which makes it a true crowdfunding platform. Loans are typically short-term, high-quality, private real estate loans, with terms from six to  24 months. Loans are typically made on residential, single-family properties. Investors select the specific loans they want to invest in. This is very similar to peer-to-peer lending platforms, like Lending Club and Prosper. It even provides an automated investing feature that can add specific loan types to your portfolio.

The minimum initial investment is very low at $1,000, however you must be an accredited investor to sign up. The platform advertises that typical investments will earn between 6% and 12% per year.

One advantage is that they provide both traditional and Roth IRA accounts. Another is that their loan guidelines are fairly strict, usually limiting loan values to no more than 75% of the underlying property value. The short-term nature of the loans also helps to lower risk. The disadvantage is that PeerStreet offers only debt-based investments, and not equity investments.

4. RealtyShares

RealtyShares focuses on small to midsize real estate investments. This includes investing in multifamily residential, office, industrial, self-storage, retail, medical office and hospitality facilities. It can also include single-family properties used for investment purposes. As an investor, you can either invest in a single real estate transaction, or you can invest in groups of properties with similar characteristics.

RealtyShares offers three types of investor participation, including debt, equity, and preferred equity. Preferred equity involves a favored position in the equity capital structure, but with limited upside potential.

For equity investments, you’ll receive distributions on a monthly basis. When an equity investment property is sold, you also get a share of any net appreciation. Debt investments are paid quarterly. Individuals can hold investments within the platform anywhere from a few months to several years.

This platform requires a minimum upfront investment of $5,000. Or you can make individual investments for as little as $1,000. You must also be an accredited investor in order to participate. Fees include 1% on equity investments, and an interest rate spread of up to 2% on debt investments, but there are no upfront fees or annual fees to join.

5. CrowdStreet

CrowdStreet offers investments in commercial real estate. It tends to favor institutional level commercial real estate, rather than investments in small residential property rehabs and fix-and-flip deals. The platform provides substantial information and documentation for each project, enabling investors to evaluate the viability of deals on their own. Investments can be in either debt, equity, preferred equity, or even direct ownership. Investment terms range between three years and 10 years.

The direct ownership option is unique. As an investor, you can work directly with the project sponsor, even giving you an opportunity to invest in deals in your local area.

CrowdStreet investors must be accredited. The minimum initial investment is $10,000. There are no fees to use the platform. CrowdStreet offers both taxable accounts and self-directed IRA accounts.

Important Factors to Consider

Real estate crowdfunding is considered to be high-risk investing and you will generally need to be an accredited investor. This requires meeting the following qualifications:

  • An annual income of $200,000 individually (or $300,000 jointly) for the past two years, with a reasonable expectation of earning at least that much in the future
  • A net worth of over $1 million, excluding your primary residence.

Also, real estate crowdfunding investments are not liquid. The deals you invest in are based on individual properties that do not trade on recognized exchanges. You cannot buy and sell properties in the same way as stocks and bonds. Instead, you’re committed to an investment until the loan term expires or the property is sold.

Remember, return of your investment principle is not guaranteed. You can lose some or all of your investment on any given deal. Debt investments tend to be safer, but still do not guarantee return of principal.

Final Thoughts

Real estate crowdfunding sites provide investors with an opportunity to invest in one of the most profitable–but least understood–asset classes: commercial real estate. Before these sites became available, these deals were only an option for very large and sophisticated investors.

Even if you’re not an accredited investor, there’s still a way to invest using funds where they are available. A well-diversified investment portfolio should include a real estate allocation with a portion invested on the commercial side. Real estate crowdfunding sites give you an opportunity to do just that in a variety of ways designed to fit your comfort level.

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With banks paying historically low rates, savers have other options. Here are 7 alternatives to high yield savings accounts.

Alternatives to High Yield Savings Accounts
Let’s be honest, yields on totally safe savings accounts are pathetically low. Typical savings accounts and money markets pay no more than a fraction of 1%. Even so-called high yield savings accounts rarely pay much more than 1%. But here are seven alternatives to high yield savings accounts.

Before we go into the list, understand that these alternatives are not completely safe. There is some risk of loss of principle, and there’s at least a small chance of default. And in some cases, you’ll also have to tie your money up longer to get a higher yield. But if it’s a choice between earning less than the rate of inflation, and earning a few points more, it may be worth the risk.

1.High Yield Bonds

These are bonds issued by corporations. The typically pay higher yields than certificates of deposit (CDs) or U.S. Treasury securities, because they carry higher risk.  But there are some top-rated companies issuing high yield bonds that seem relatively safe.

If you don’t like buying bonds from individual companies, you can always invest in a mutual fund or an exchange traded fund (ETF) that holds high yield bonds. That will lower the risk of loss on the failure of any individual issue.

The returns on these securities can be impressive. Money/US News has a list of 17 high yield bond funds. As an example from the list, iShares 0-5 Year High Yield Corp Bd ETF has a one year return of 5.18%.

2. Dividend Paying Stocks

Many large, well established companies pay dividends on their stocks. And while the current bull market has most investors chasing after price growth, some stocks offer healthy dividends. NASDAQ.com has a list of dividend paying stocks, and there are scores that pay over 5%.

One of the advantages with dividend paying stocks is the potential for capital appreciation. While you’re earning a solid dividend yield, the value of the underlying stock(s) can also rise, providing you with a double-edged gain.

3. Preferred Stocks

Preferred stocks have similar benefits to dividend paying stocks. You can get a strong dividend return, plus the potential for capital appreciation. The major advantage with preferred stocks is that they are a more secure investment than common stocks. For example, should the company declare bankruptcy, preferred stock would be paid ahead of common stock.

The website Dividend.com has a long list of preferred stocks that yield in excess of 5%.

4. US Treasury Notes

U.S. Treasury notes are an investment in U.S. government debt. That makes them the safest of all securities. There’s virtually no chance of the issuer going into default, and you’ll always get your investment principal back if the securities are held until maturity.

US Treasury Notes have maturities ranging from two years to 10 years. They can be purchased in denominations as low as $100, and pay interest every six months.

2-year notes currently pay 2.21%. 5-year notes pay 2.63%.

5. Municipal Bonds

Municipal bonds are debt securities issued by state, county and municipal governments, and their agencies. The biggest attraction is that they are tax free for Federal income tax purposes.  But they’re also tax free if you are a resident of the state from which they are issued. This gives them a double tax-free benefit. The best strategy is to purchase these bonds in your state of residence.

The tax benefit is no small advantage. If you are in a combined Federal and state tax bracket of 30%, a 3.5% yield effectively becomes 5.0%. But it also means that these bonds should not be held in a tax-sheltered retirement plan. Since such accounts are already tax deferred, the tax benefit of municipal bonds would be lost.

But even apart from the tax benefit, municipal bonds provide a healthy return. Morningstar reports that the average annual return on municipal bond funds is 3.51% over the past five years. You can invest in individual bonds in your state, or you can invest in a municipal bond fund. The funds can also be state specific.

6. Peer-to-Peer (P2P) Lending

The number of P2P lending platforms has grown in recent years, and for good reason. The yields on P2P investing is much better than what you can get in traditional super safe investments. P2P lending is basically being on the investor side of banking. You are providing the funds that borrowers are using for loans. Since there is no bank in the middle, you get the higher returns.

For example, P2P giant Lending Club advertises average returns of 4% to 6% per year, and I’ve heard of some investors doing much better.

There’s the risk of default by borrowers, but returns are net of those losses. P2P investing can be used to increase the overall return on your fixed income assets by holding a portion of that portfolio in these securities.

7. Longer Term Certificates of Deposit

CDs are a way to preserve absolute safety in your interest-bearing investments. They offer higher yields than high yield savings accounts, with the limitation that you’ll tie your money up for a longer term. But if you have no immediate use for the funds, it could be well worth the wait.

For example, Ally Bank currently pays 1.45% APY on high yield savings. But they pay 2.50% APY on their five-year CD. You’ll be increasing your yield by more than a full percentage point by going with the five-year CD. Note that these rates are subject to change.

Do you know of any other alternatives to high yield savings accounts?

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When you buy a new phone, you can get cash for your old one. To help you get the most money, we’ve assembled the 7 best places to sell a used smartphone.

sell a used smartphone

Brand new cell phones are expensive, especially as the technology improves. One way to lower that cost is to sell an old cell phone to pay part of the cost of a new one. To help the effort, here are seven places to sell an old cell phone.

Gazelle

Gazelle is a name that is practically synonymous with selling old cell phones. They primarily work with Apple phones, but you may be able to sell even a broken unit there. The site is a virtual supermarket for the buying and selling of cell phones.

What’s more, Gazelle pays cash for your cell phone, and there are no fees. This is an advantage compared with other sources that often offer an in-store credit. They will pay by check, Amazon gift card, or PayPal. They even offer same-day payments.

And just in case you forget to do it, Gazelle removes all personal information from the device. You should always do that anytime you sell an old cell phone But it’s nice to know Gazelle will come in behind you and take care of it anyway.

An Apple iPhone 7 32GB shows an offer of $200.

uSell

One of the advantages with uSell is that you can sell just about any used phone there. That includes all the major brands, and you can sell them for cash. In fact you can compare cash offers from hundreds of different buyers in a matter of seconds.

The disadvantage with uSell is that they are not a direct buyer. Instead, you are dealing with different buyers through the site. You must send in your cell phone to be inspected. If the phone passes the inspection, they’ll pay you by either check or PayPal.

An iPhone 7 32GB (Verizon) in good condition shows an offer of $243.60.

Sell.com

Similar to uSell, Sell.com is not a direct buyer of cell phones but an online marketplace, something like an eBay for cell phones. That of course is not a bad situation. But the process may be more complicated than simply going to a centralized buyer.

Instead, you have to advertise your phone for sale, wait for a buyer, and then work out the details from there. It’s not the simplest place to sell a cell phone, but it can offer you an opportunity to get a better price, since it’s a marketplace that specializes in the devices.

An Apple iPhone 6 (16 GB) shows as going for $189.95.

eBay

eBay is usually the best way to get the top price for your phone. That’s because you’re selling the phone directly to another buyer, and you don’t have to pay an intermediary along the way.

Start by scanning the prices on similar cell phones already listed on eBay. Price yours a little bit lower than the prevailing value if you want to sell it quickly. As is always the case with eBay sales, it helps to include a few photos and list as many features on the phone as possible.

Amazon

You may be able to sell your phone through the Amazon Trade-in program. Amazon takes trade-ins on all kinds of items, including cell phones.

Through the program, you can receive an Amazon.com gift card in exchange for a cell phone. There are no fees for the program, either. When you send the phone in, you can print a free prepaid shipping label. And if the phone is returned for any reason, there’s no cost on return shipping either. You can even use the Amazon App to make the trade in. All you need to do is open the app and scan the item.

Once you send your phone in, Amazon will appraise it. You’ll receive an email notification within two business days letting you know if the phone was accepted or rejected. The process can take up to 10 business days to complete.

An Apple iPhone 6 (16 GB) shows “up to $95.05.”

For Damaged Phones–EcoATM

EcoATM is almost unique among places the sell an old cell phone. That’s because you actually do it in person. EcoATM has kiosks located throughout the country where you make it happen. They recycle electronic devices from nearly every major brand. And when you turn your phone in, they pay you cash for it.

You place your device in the kiosk, where EcoATM will examine the device, and give you the best price. If you agree to that price, you get cash on the spot. Not the best place price-wise, but it’s as quick as it gets.

An iPhone 6s Plus 16GB Verizon/Unlocked shows a payment range of between $5 and $90.

To Your Cell Phone Provider for a Credit

One of the easiest ways to sell your old cell phone is to turn it into your current provider. Cell phone providers sometimes offer to redeem your phone as a way to keep your business.

For example, you can check out the Verizon device trade-in page. Verizon lets you trade in your old phone to get a credit on your Verizon Wireless account. Alternatively, you can get a Verizon Wireless gift card. Each will be based on the appraised value of your old phone.

You can trade in up to 10 devices, including names like Apple, Samsung, LG, Motorola or other manufacturers. You send in your device, and the carrier will appraise it. Then you’ll get an email confirmation of the appraised value. Verizon will issue the credit within one to two billing cycles or send a gift card within two weeks.

Check with whoever your current cell phone provider is, and see if they have a similar program.

Final Thoughts on Selling an Old Cell Phone

Any time you trade in or sell an old cell phone, you should fully expect to get less than what you originally paid. If you think in terms of a lot less, you won’t be disappointed. For example, you may have paid $600 for your phone brand-new, but don’t be surprised if you can only sell it for around $100. Obviously, the later the model of your phone, the more you’ll get for it.

Yet another important point is that you have to be careful that you remove any personal information from your device. Smartphones contain a lot of personal information, including account access information and maybe even your Social Security number. You don’t want to turn over your device with that information to an unknown third party. Some of the services listed above will do that for you, but never assume that’s the way it will work.

Have you tried to sell an old cell phone in the past? How did it go for you?

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The best life insurance is term. And Haven Life Insurance claims to provide term life insurance with less fuss and cost than other companies. We put these claims to the test in our Haven Life Insurance review.

Haven Life Insurance Review

Haven Life Insurance is a 100% online, tech focused life insurance company. It provides fully medically underwritten term life insurance in as little as minutes on many policies.

The company is a relative newcomer to the life insurance field. It’s fully owned by one of the largest companies in the life insurance industry.

We spent time putting Haven Life to the test. We wanted to know whether its website is easy to use. And of course, we wondered if its premiums on life insurance were competitive.

In short, Haven Life is an excellent choice for anyone who wants to get hassle-free coverage in the shortest amount of time possible.

About Haven Life Insurance

New York City based Haven Life Insurance was founded in March, 2013. But don’t let the company’s recent founding scare you away. Haven Life is a wholly owned subsidiary of Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company (“Mass Mutual”).

Mass Mutual is one the largest and best established insurance companies in the United States. The company was founded in 1851 and has over $560 billion in life insurance in force.

Third Party Ratings of Mass Mutual and Haven Life Insurance

Mass Mutual has a rating of A++ (Superior) from insurance industry ratings provider A.M. Best.

Haven Life Insurance has a Better Business Bureau rating of A+ (on a scale of A+ to F). The company has been BBB accredited since July, 2016.

Haven Life also has a Trustpilot rating of five stars out of five (Excellent), based on 284 reviews.

How Haven Life Insurance Works

Haven Life Insurance offers only term life insurance. It doesn’t offer any of the various flavors of permanent insurance, such as whole life, variable life or universal life. Their policies are available in all 50 states, plus the District of Columbia.

Unlike many traditional insurance companies, Haven Life uses a fully automated, 100% online underwriting process. They refer to this as their algorithmic underwriting process. It uses the information you provide on your application, as well as external data, such as:

  • MIB
  • Underwriting information exchange among member insurance companies
  • Pharmacy benefit managers
  • Consumer reporting agencies
  • Other publicly available sources

Haven Life uses sophisticated technology to analyze the data, inform you if you are qualified for coverage, or if additional medical information is needed. The entire process takes place in a matter of minutes.

Eligible applicants: In order to be eligible to apply with Haven Life Insurance, you must meet the following criteria:

  • Be a U.S. citizen and resident
  • Between the ages of 18 and 64
  • Not active military or in the process of enlisting
  • Have no intention to use the policy for business purposes
  • Not planning to use the policy to replace another policy

Policy limits: Policies are available for a minimum of $100,000, up to $2 million for applicants under 60, or no more than $1 million for applicants between the ages of 60 and 64.

Policy terms: Policies feature terms of 10 years, 15 years, 20 years and 30 years.

Premium payments: Haven Life Insurance offers only one payment method, and that’s a monthly draft through a pre-authorized checking account (PAC). The draft takes place on the “monthinversary” of your policy effective date. There is currently no capability to make annual, semi-annual, or quarterly payments.

Payments include a 31-day grace period. Within that time, you can make the premium payment with no lapse in coverage, nor any interest charged on the late payment.

Customer service: Available by phone and live chat, Monday through Friday, 9:00 AM to 6:00 PM, Eastern Time. If assistance is needed after business hours, customer service is available by email.

Haven Life Insurance Policy Features

All life insurance companies have certain provisions, in addition to the basic death benefit. Haven Life Insurance has the following provisions:

Level Premium: Your monthly premium payment will remain fixed throughout the length of the policy term. If your payment is $30 per month, and you have a 20-year term policy, the premium will not change for 20 years.

Accelerated Death Benefit: This provision provides you with access to a portion of your policies death benefit should you become terminally ill. This is defined as an illness with a diagnosis ranging from 12 to 24 months to live. It allows you to collect a significant portion of the death benefit while you are still living. The proceeds are mainly to cover medical expenses, but can be used for just about any purpose. The amount advanced against the death benefit accrues interest, and reduces the final death benefit.

Waiver of premium: In the event you become fully disabled due to either illness or injury, you will not have to make premium payments during the full duration of the disability. If the disability lasts longer than six months, you will be entitled to a full refund of premiums paid since the date of disability (since it often takes several months to establish a disability determination). This provision is available only on applicants under age 50, and does require an additional monthly fee.

Period of Contestability: All policies include this provision, and it’s fairly common in the insurance industry. For the first two years the policy is in force, the insurance company has the option to not pay the death benefit if death is the result of suicide. The company also has the right to contest payment of the death benefit due to other factors, such as information not disclosed on the application. This means that if you die within two years of the effective date of the policy, the company has the right to review the claim, to determine if payment will be made.

Free Look Period: In some states, you may have at least 10 days from when the policy is presented to decide if you want to accept it. This gives you an opportunity to read the insurance contract, and decide if you want to accept it. Should you decide to cancel for any reason, you can get a complete refund of your premium paid within 7 to 10 business days.

Haven Life Insurance Quotes

Obtaining life insurance quotes is one of the big advantages that Haven Life Insurance provides. In my experience, most life insurance companies require you to provide uncomfortable amounts of information, only after which you will be contacted by an agent. It’s a jumping-through-fiery-hoops process, usually followed by repeated solicitations.

With Haven Life, there’s none of that circus. You answer a few questions–without even disclosing any personal contact information–and you get quotes instantaneously. It couldn’t be easier.

The series of six questions is as follows:

  • I identify as: male/female
  • I was born on: enter birthdate
  • I use nicotine containing products: yes/no
  • I consider my health: average/good/excellent
  • I’m looking for a coverage amount of: increments from $100,000 up to $2 million
  • With a policy length of: 10/15/20/30 years

Once completed, you hit the “Calculate” button beneath, and your quotes appear immediately.

I entered information for a 40 year-old male, non-smoker, in excellent health, for a $500,000 20 year term policy, and got the following results:

I then entered information for a 40 year-old female, non-smoker, in excellent health, for a $500,000 20 year term policy, and got the following results:

Now notice that even though I entered both profiles as being in excellent health, the quotes provided showed monthly premium rates for all three health classes–excellent, good and average.

This isn’t just a mere convenience. One of the issues in applying for life insurance is that health level is highly subjective. It’s not unusual for applicants to state their health is excellent, then the insurance company–based on a search of your medical records–comes back with a rating of “good” or “average”. The advantage with a quote from Haven Life is that you will already know the premium range of the lower health classifications.

It’s important to remember that the quote you receive is just the starting point. You must still make application, and in many cases it will take a few weeks to get from the quote to policy issuance.

Haven Life Insurance Application Process

Like the life insurance quote, the application process takes place completely online. Naturally, the process is more involved and will take more time, though there is a fast-track process that can bring an approval immediately. We’ll get into that shortly.

To get started, you’ll need the following information:

  • Driver’s license number and expiration date
  • Social Security Number
  • Current height and weight
  • Personal and family medical history
  • Your financial information, including salary and existing debt
  • Lifestyle and health history information
  • Ages of your dependents and intention to cover future college education costs
  • Your spouse’s age and income
  • Contact information for your primary care physician

InstantTerm. This is the fast-track approval. It provides an immediate decision on your eligibility for coverage, that way you can get coverage upon signing your documents and making your initial premium payment.

It works this way:

Option One: If you qualify for InstantTerm, you will not be required to take a medical exam. This will be possible for qualified, healthy applicants, up to age 45, applying for no more than $1 million in coverage. This will require that you are absolutely truthful in completing the insurance application, and that information is verified as accurate by third-party sources.

Option Two: If it’s determined that you do need to take a medical exam, the final approval process will take longer. Once the exam has been completed, and labs have been processed–which will generally take between seven and 10 days–the final approval can be issued. This can extend the final approval by an additional 2 to 4 weeks, depending upon how quickly the medical exam is scheduled and all results are in. This will generally happen if underwriting has concerns, either with the information in your application, or from third-party sources.

The medical exam involves a paramedic coming to your home or office. It will be scheduled at a date, time and location that works best for you. The exam will typically require that you provide blood in urine samples, and that other tests be performed as deemed necessary by underwriting.

Haven Life Insurance Pros and Cons

Pros:

  • Quick and easy life insurance quotes. You answer a few questions online, and get a quote back instantly. Most insurance companies collect your information, then have an agent contact you, making for a more complicated process just to get a quote.
  • If you qualify for InstantTerm, final approval can be had within minutes of application, rather than the four-to-six weeks it takes for traditional life insurance underwriting approval.
  • The quote you receive provides premium rates for all three health classifications, excellent, good an average. There’s less of a surprise if the final approval comes back with a lower rating.
  • You can get the benefit of a fully medically underwritten premium rate, even though a medical exam isn’t required.

Cons:

  • Haven Life does not offer the ability to replace an existing life insurance policy.
  • A noncitizen, or nonresident of the US is not eligible for coverage.
  • You can purchase a policy for yourself and either your partner or spouse. But policies are not available for other members of your family, including your children.
  • Term coverage only, no permanent options are offered.
  • There is no provision for a Haven Life term policy to be converted to permanent life insurance.
  • No coverage available for applicants over 64.

Should You Get Life Insurance from Haven Life Insurance?

Haven Life Insurance is an excellent choice if you want a hassle-free term life insurance policy in the shortest time possible. And if you’re young, in excellent health, and not a fan of medical exams, you can take advantage of Haven Life’s InstantTerm approval.

That’s no small advantage. A lot of people really don’t like undergoing medical exams. With other life insurance companies, a no-medical exam policy will result in a higher premium, and offer a much smaller policy. With Haven Life’s InstantTerm, you can get the same premium as you would on a policy with a medical exam, but without the exam.

There are some disadvantages to Haven Life Insurance, as described in the “Cons” above. And any time you’re shopping for life insurance, you should always get quotes from several companies. This is even more important if you do have less than perfect health.

But other than those caveats, Haven Life Insurance should be on your short list of carriers if you’re in the market for a policy.

If you’d like more information, or you’d like to apply for coverage, visit the Haven Life Insurance website.

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Credit Karma: A Great Place to Get Your Credit Score Free

by Kevin Mercadante

See if this offer of a totally free credit score is legit in our review of Credit Karma. We cover what they offer, how it works, what you get, and if it’s truly free. You’re probably familiar with Credit Karma from their ads on TV, and especially on the web. They’re  an online credit score […]

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Best Robo Advisors

by Kevin Mercadante

A robo advisor can make it easy to invest in an IRA or taxable account. But how do you choose? Here’s our 2018 list of the best robo advisors for your money. This is something of a controversial topic. There are any number of “best robo-advisors” lists, and they all look a little bit different. […]

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7 of the Best Places to Open an IRA in 2018

by Kevin Mercadante

Opening an IRA is an important decision. To help, here is our survey of the best IRA accounts for 2018, including fees and features of each option. Just about every bank, investment brokerage, and robo-advisor welcomes Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs). But there are a handful of institutions that stand out above the rest. Below are […]

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MoviePass Review: Is it Really Unlimited Movies for One Price?

by Kevin Mercadante

MoviePass claims to offer unlimited movie tickets for one low monthly price. Is it too good to be true? We answer that question in our MoviePass review. According to the National Theater Owner’s Association, the average price of a movie theater ticket was $8.84 as of the first quarter of 2017. If you live in […]

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How to Get Out of a Cell Phone Contract without Paying a Fee

by Kevin Mercadante

Being locked into a cell phone contract is no fun. Here’s how to get out of a cell phone contract without paying an early termination fee. We recently received a question that probably every reader can relate to. The writer is asking how to get out of a cell phone contract without paying a fee: […]

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Ally Invest Review

by Kevin Mercadante

Ally Invest offers is a low cost and very easy to use online broker. Formerly TradeKing, we cover all of its features and costs in this review. You’ve probably heard about Ally Bank. They’re perhaps the best-known online bank, offering some of the highest interest rates available on savings accounts and certificates of deposit. As […]

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