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Personal Finance Round-Up: Preparing For A Sickness or Injury

By Money Crashers

We often think that getting hospitalized due to an illness or injury is something that we cannot predict or prepare for, but that’s not true.  Over half of the people that file for bankruptcy do so because of extremely large medical bills that they cannot pay back.  Now, this may be partly due to unbelievably high medical expenses and unaffordable health insurance, but it if you plan for bad things to happen, they won’t seem so bad when they don’t put you in bankruptcy.  Here’s a good article from Bargaineering on how to prepare for a sickness and/or injury.

Here’s some other great personal finance articles from the past week:

Vanguard Expands Target Date Funds to Young Investors. This is very cool to see Vanguard offering investment products to teenagers and college students.  We need MORE investment companies targeting kids, NOT credit card companies. [Consumerism Commentary]

How To Negotiate Like A Pro. If you learn the art of negotiating and put it into practice when buying large items like cars, appliances, real estate, and other big ticket items, you’ll save hundreds of thousands of dollars over your lifetime. [Five Cent Nickel]

Calcuating Net Worth, Should Home Values Be Included? This is a great question, and I think they should be as long as you have an accurate and realistic value for what your home could sell for.  The best way to estimate that number is to look at the similar comps in your neighborhood of homes that have recently sold.  See what Frugal Dad has to say about it. [Frugal Dad]

Save Money On Baby Goodies with Daily Deal Websites. This is a good list of websites where you can find daily deals specifically for baby stuff. It caught my eye since we’re only 22 weeks away from having a baby! [WiseBread]

How To Spend Unexpected Income. This is a must-read, because we often end up blowing extra, unexpected income such as bonuses, commissions, or monetary gifts.  That money can be put to good use if you have the right mindset about it. [Christian PF]

Why Invest In Stocks. Think it’s crazy to invest in stocks at this time or ever? Take a look at some support for investing in stocks and the rational behind it. [Free From Broke]

Is Your Money Working For You, Or Are You Working For Your Money? Here are some interesting insights into money and how to best utilize it and maximize how much money you are bringing in. The post offers some great tips for your financial life. [Frugal Confessions]

Bargaineering)

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  • http://frugalzeitgeist.com Forest

    Hey Erik, nice roundup.

    Coming from the UK I still can’t wrap my head around why anyone in their right mind would not support universal health care…. To watch so many people’s lives ruined by medical bills every year is heart breaking :(….

    Thanks a million for adding my link.

  • http://www.frugalconfessions.com Amanda L Grossman

    Hello Erik!

    Thank you for the inclusion.

  • http://www.investitwisely.com Kevin@InvestItWisely

    Hey Forest,

    I’m not sure about universal health care (every country has its own way of doing this, and there are pros and cons to each system), but I’m completely with you when it comes to those expensive medical bills. Why on heck is medical care so damn expensive in the USA? It’s much more affordable and cheaper in other countries; I remember my Korean roommate telling me how $300 a month in insurance covered the whole family of 4 or 5.

    Maybe it has something to do with the cartelization of the industry? I guess it also doesn’t help that you use insurance to pay for every little thing. Imagine how much more expensive car insurance would be if you could use it to fix every little thing that goes wrong with the car, and even use it for regular maintenance!

    If you want to know what I support, it’s catastrophic coverage for all, and perhaps dental/medical for the young if the parents are unwilling or unable to provide. However, if people have the ability to pay, but refuse to do so, I don’t feel sorry for them. Likewise if people absolutely refuse to exercise or take even basic health precautions, like not smoking two packs of cigarettes a day. People should have the responsibility to look after their own health… it’s their body after all!

  • http://www.investitwisely.com Kevin@InvestItWisely

    Thanks for the mention, Eric! Yep, Southeast Asia is a beautiful place to visit, and the people can be charming, but some of them are just out to make a quick buck, at your expense!

  • http://frugalzeitgeist.com Forest

    Hey Kevin, that’s not a terrible option at all… Not sure how to determine exactly who can and can’t pay but it could work for sure.

    I am for social medicine like I am for social firemen and social police…. Could you imagine having to have fire insurance before the fire engines would leave the station come and put your buildings fire out! HELP I HAVE A FIRE…. OK, sir, Can I have your policy number please….

    The way it works in UK is you have social medicine for all. We pay a percentage of our wages to that and if you don’t work you don’t pay. The standard is good as far as I have experienced but if you want luxury then you can add private insurance on top. I would say your national health and private insurance added together is probably level to what is being paid in USA for just normal health insurance…. but of course I could be wrong.

    • http://www.investitwisely.com Kevin@InvestItWisely

      To me, the biggest downside of socialized medicine are the impatient doctors and the queues. Doctors, even the nice ones, don’t really want to see your face (though, who knows, American doctors might be like this too). However, it could be a cultural thing. I am honestly not sure how socialized the Korean system is; my roommate told me that everyone pays insurance. As foreigners we paid out of pocket, but it was very cheap.

      The doctors there were all nice; in fact, it was pretty cool how the system was set up because it was like being on an assembly line in a car factory. No waiting on a seat! You go in, you see a nurse right away, then you see a doctor, then you see a second doctor, then you get a prescription, then you’re on your way!

      The queues piss me off, however.If I relied on the public system, I would wait months or years for a MRI, not knowing if I had a brain tumour. My grandmother has been waiting for more than 6 months to have an operation to have a hernia fixed. This is in spite of the tens of thousands of dollars of taxes she has paid over her lifetime. This is the reality of socialized care… in fact, were it not for a court case recently where the supreme court struck down some restrictions against private care, I don’t think we would even have the option.

  • http://freefrombroke.com Craig

    Thanks for the mention Erik!

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