Before you shop for Car Insurance

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Auto Insurance Information You Need To Know

Many people say that selecting the right auto insurance for them is a very difficult endeavor, but that is only correct if you don’t have the right information. Like anything, you need to have the right information to select the right auto insurance. This article contains a number of tips to help you on your way to selecting the right auto insurance for you.

When considering auto insurance for a young driver, be sure to provide the insurance company with all of the proof that may entitle the driver to a discount. It’s bad enough how much they charge for young drivers, you don’t have to willingly let them dip in your wallet, so make sure you are not leaving any possible discounts on the table. It’s always good advise to ask what possible discounts even for younger driver are available.

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Be sure to keep your car secure. Keeping your car garaged, having a security alarm system, using a locking device on your steering wheel, having a professionally installed tracking system and living in a safe neighborhood are just a few of the ways you can save some money on your car insurance. Be sure to ask your agent how you can get discounts on your insurance rates with good security measures.

If you are putting less than 20% down on your car, make sure to look into getting GAP car insurance. Should you have an accident while you are still in the first year or two of payments, you may end up owing the bank more money than you would receive in a claim.

As was stated at the beginning of this article, selecting the right auto insurance plan can be a difficult task, but the process is much easier if you have the right information and know where to look. Use this article’s advice to help you select the right auto insurance plan.

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Is Investing in Real Estate for you?

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Referring To Real Estate Investing, The Best Ideas Are Found Here

Do you want to learn more about investing in real estate? If so, you are in the right place. This article has several tips to help you begin. Once you have read it, you will have a greater understanding of the market. Use these tips to make sound choices in your investments.

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Do not be afraid to spend money on marketing. It is easy to just focus on the numbers and get fixated on how much marketing is costing you. However, it is important to think of the marketing as an investment in and of itself. If done the right way, it will only benefit you in the end.

Go into the meetings that you have with potential investors with a positive mindset, but understand that a negative outcome is possible. Always have a jovial, but businesslike personality to get the people who want to invest to like you. This will go a long way and make your potential investors more comfortable.
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Never invest your money in a property that has not been inspected by an experienced and independent property inspector. Also, be wary of sellers who want to pay for the inspection. The person they use may not be looking out for your best interests. Always get a neutral report or a lookover from someone that you personally trust.

Always be on time when you set up a meeting with a potential client. This will indicate that you mean business and will show no disrespect to your potential customer. Coming to a meeting late shows that you are unorganized and do not care about your customers, which will cause you to lose them.

Stick with niches you are familiar with. This will help you to maximize the profits that you make. You could handle properties that have low down payments, work with starters or just flip houses, but whatever it is you should choose a focus and stick with it.

If you purchase a property and need to make repairs, be wary of any contractors who ask for money in advance. You should not have to pay before the work is done, and if you do, you run the risk of getting ripped off. At the very least, never pay the full amount ahead of time.

Picking good, well-known areas is usually a smart way to go. This is key, because it provides the greatest possible resale value once you are ready to buy it. Properties that are simple to clean and maintain are also ideal.

If your are planing to rent the property make sure to check out very carefully any potential renters. Also secure first and last rental payment to cover any possible damages to your place. If they cannot come up with the money, they are likely to have problems paying rent too. This should be a sign that someone else would be a much more reliable renter.

Many people who are interested in buying and selling real estate join real estate clubs, and you should too! In this venue, you will find a high concentration of people who are interested in the properties you have to offer and/or who have properties on offer that you may really want. This is a great place to network, share your business cards and fliers and promote your business.

Always make sure that you have a financial security blanket when you invest. When minor repairs become necessary or other expenses arise that have to do with the rental property, the money you are holding in reserve is very helpful. Additionally, the reserved cash can help if you can’t rent the property quickly. You will surely have expenses to meet, whether you have a renter or not.

Real estate is a popular way for people to invest their money. You can become one of those people by investing in the real estate market. These suggestions are a fabulous place to begin. Continue learning about the market. Before you know it, you will feel comfortable with the real estate market.

A step fast-forward for radio news?

radio news

Radio communication has come a long way since World War I, when the tactic of sending infantry forward shielded by an artillery barrage was confounded by the inability of the advancing infantry to tell the distant cannoneers exactly where they were.

By World War II the problem was solved, and a staple of the Hollywood movies of that era is the scene where a crouching radioman whispers coordinates. Today there’s not much radio can’t do: we hop in the car, punch a button on the dash, and settle into the music that puts our minds at ease or the news that tells us what’s going on all over the world and our city. During rush hours, radio reports incessantly on the state of the expressways, allowing us to plan our routes accordingly.

The current state of radio is captured nicely by an award that Ron Gleason, director of news and programming at CBS-owned WBBM-AM, told me about the other day. The Web Marketing Association had just named CBS’s Radio.com app the year’s best radio mobile application. “Our audience,” said the CBS entry, “is anyone that wants access to their favorite radio stations, whether it is sports, news, talk, rock, country or any of our other formats, any time of day no matter where they are.” Say you were in Minneapolis last Sunday, and wanted to hear the Bears-Vikings game as called by your hometown’s Newsradio 780 announcers. A couple of clicks on your smartphone and you were in business.

But apps keep coming and bragging rights are never long settled. HearHere Radio, a Chicago-based start-up, will grant Radio.com its Bears game; but let’s say you’re back home in Hinsdale, it’s Monday morning, and you’re facing the long drive to work in the Loop. Let’s also say HearHere’s Rivet News Radio app works the way it’s supposed to. It’s divided greater Chicago (from the Loop 40 miles out in all directions) into five zones and, thanks to GIS, it knows you’re starting out in the zone it calls “west suburbs.” It gives you the state of the expressways through your zone but spares you all the others, and when your car passes into the “Chicago” zone, its traffic report changes accordingly. Rivet is leading you—in sort of the way field radios let the artillery lead the ground troops pushing west through France.

As I write, the date isn’t certain yet, but HearHere wants the Rivet app available at the iTunes Store in early December. Apps for other devices will follow.

Rivet—a late-in-the-game name change from H2 Radio—is intended to be about a lot more than traffic reports. “Giving listeners unprecedented control over what kinds of news they hear and when they hear it, and customized for wherever a listener happens to be,” boasted a mid-November news release. In other words, none of the news you’d rather not know—which, like it or not, is how the public has selectively skipped through newspapers for decades.

Charlie Meyerson runs the Rivet newsroom (now hiring). Fifteen months ago he pretty much laid out the idea of Rivet News Radio in a visionary application to the Knight News Challenge (that didn’t win anything).

“Traditional news radio is constrained by format, unable to provide on-demand access to expanded coverage, wastes time on weather and traffic information irrelevant to any one user at a given time and isn’t customizable,” said Meyerson’s pitch to Knight. “The Smartphone News Network will give users a multichannel, customizable and time-shiftable news experience, created from the ground up for smartphones.”

As he sees it, the plague of radio stations that take news seriously, be they all-news stations like WBBM or public radio stations like WBEZ, is redundancy. “If you listen to them any period of time you’ll hear the same story time and again,” he tells me. And some of those stories won’t interest you any more than expressway conditions two counties over will. “There’s tremendous clutter from the listener’s point of view.”

So Rivet slices and dices: the region’s traffic into zones; its own programming into categories (government and politics, business, sports, entertainment, technology and science, lifestyle) that you can program your smartphone or Internet-enabled dashboard to receive or ignore. Most of these stories will be generated by the Rivet newsroom; some will be curated (with NPR stories in the mix). When a story comes along you don’t care about, you can fast-forward through it. Or you can rewind to hear it again. And you won’t have to wait for Rivet to cycle through to traffic: if you wish, when you turn on Rivet it’ll be the first thing you hear. The journalists in the Rivet newsroom “will be free of the tyranny of the clock,” says Meyerson. “Any story can be as long as it is interesting, with the understanding that listeners who become impatient can fast-forward to the next item.”

Getting out from under the clock is a value Meyerson says he took with him from his last big job, bureau chief and City Hall reporter for FM News 101.1, an experiment in tony all-news broadcasting launched in August 2011 by Randy Michaels, who went back to broadcasting after being bounced as CEO of the Tribune Company. FM News 101.1 lasted only 11 months, but before the plug was pulled it won several awards for its coverage of the sentencing of Rod Blagojevich, a story to which Meyerson says his station dedicated almost three hours of commercial-free coverage.

At this stage, HearHere Radio is two key people. The other is its founder and CEO, John MacLeod, a former executive vice president at Navteq who has three patents in his name for breakthroughs in the purveying of personalized traffic reports. “Today the majority of mapping and routing is done with digital maps embedded in cars, or via smartphones,” says MacLeod. “I see Internet radio [in cars] happening even faster. My estimate is that within five years the majority of audio listening will happen through Internet radio, and a significant portion will be in cars.” MacLeod’s backed by surveys that show the radio news audience collapsing about as rapidly as the newspaper-reading audience, while the online news audience soars. One recent Pew study found that the number of cell phone owners who have streamed online radio through their car stereos has almost tripled in the past three years, from 6 percent to 17 percent. I called Ron Gleason, news boss of Newsradio 780, because I wanted his thoughts on Rivet Radio.

“Charlie and others were involved in the start-up of the all-news FM station against us but it lasted less than a full year,” Gleason reminded me by way of preamble. “The idea of that programming was to be something brand-new and totally different, but the people spoke, and the people like what we do. Our ratings are as high as they’ve been for a couple of years.

“Our radio station is set up in a way that’s easy to use. If you want to hear the top stories, you know exactly when you can do that. Traffic and weather is on the eights, the network news is the top of the hour. Sports are at 15 and 45 past the hour, business reports at 25 and 55. Our listeners are very trained to what we do.”

This, of course, is what Meyerson calls the tyranny of the clock, afflicting news producers and listeners alike. I reminded Gleason of the ability the Rivet audience will have to fast-forward and rewind to the news it wants.

“OK, I’ll give you that,” he said. “I don’t have a DVR for radio available for you at the moment. That’s fair. But I don’t know how many people are willing to fast-forward or rewind when listening to news.” Radio is different from television, he argued. The audience comes and goes. The subject matter isn’t favorite shows preserved to enjoy at a later date. It’s news—volatile and ephemeral. As for those traffic reports—if they’re personalized, that means they have to be recorded, Gleason said. “If it’s recorded, it’s not up-to-date. Traffic changes constantly.” His reports are live.

Live on the eights, that is. Rivet’s reports may not be live but they’ll be “fresh,” MacLeod promises. “If there’s an accident we can push out an alert to listeners—we’re not waiting for time on the eights.”

When I think of radio traffic reports I think first of tone-deaf absurdity. (“And on the Stevenson,” the racing voice intones, “debris from that collision between the school bus and the molasses truck has finally been cleared away, and traffic’s running smoothly again.”) Do frequent drivers think of how they deserve better? If Rivet gives them better, will they notice?

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