<![CDATA[retiredbrains.com - Blog]]>Fri, 24 May 2019 14:27:09 -0700EditMySite<![CDATA[The Ultimate Family Gift Gide for Grandparents]]>Fri, 24 May 2019 18:57:38 GMThttp://www.retiredbrains.com/blog/the-ultimate-family-gift-gide-for-grandparentsInterested in giving your loved ones something more meaningful than a fruitcake, handmade sweaters, and other traditional gifts from grandparents? Sure, those gifts are from the heart and your intentions are in the right place, but it would be nice to give your loved ones something they can really appreciate. With so many items to choose from, however, narrowing it down can take some practice.

The best way to shop for gifts for your family is to consider their personalities and/or interests. Using this information, you can buy some of the most trendy and useful gifts they’ll enjoy. Below, are a few of the top categories/interests to choose from


If you want to buy a present any member of your family can appreciate you can’t go wrong with a tech purchase. Technology is used in just about everything we do these days, so whatever you get is sure to be enjoyed. Here are some popular tech gift ideas to consider:
  • Computers/laptops - computers and laptops are used for just about everything these days. Whether your grandkids need a new device for school or your children have just started a home-based business this tech gift will come in handy. 
  • Smartphones - Mobile phone technology evolves constantly. Today, they have so many new advancements that they can take the place of a computer or laptop while also serving as a communication device. 
  • Bluetooth devices - Wireless connectivity is a must these days so why not invest in tech devices that operate with Bluetooth technology? A vintage vinyl record player with bluetooth capabilities, for example,  allows music lovers to combine their love of nostalgia with their favorite tunes. 

Antiques and Collectibles

The great thing about giving antiques as presents are that they’re a gift that keeps on giving. When well-maintained, over time, these items become more valuable. Whether passed down as a family heirloom or preserved and traded in one day, it’s a present your loved ones can appreciate. 
  • Silverware - Got a son or daughter who recently purchased a home? Maybe they were recently married? If so, antique silverware is a meaningful gift to consider. 
  • Sports Cards - If you have a grandson who loves baseball, basketball, or football the right card could make their day. You can find rare sports cards online and in specialty stores for sale.
  • Paintings - Vintage paintings are another anitque or collectible that’s a great gift for an adult relative. Great as home decor pieces these paintings can be hung and enjoyed by everyone.

Health and Wellness

Everyone is trying to take a better approach to living healthy lifestyles. From dieting and exercising to reducing stress and more, there are a lot of ways to approach this. Needless to say, there are a ton of products on the market that your health and fitness enthusiasts will appreciate.
  • Spa Essentials - Relaxation and the reduction of stress are at the top of everyone’s list. Help your loved ones to unwind with spa essentials. Anything from aromatherapy candles to bath salts and essential oils will suffice. 
  • Gym Gear - When it comes to exercising the gym remains one of the most popular places to go. You can buy your relatives gym gear to make their experience more successful. Yoga pants, tank tops, mats, water bottles, duffel bags, and running shoes are all examples of gym gear that would be useful. 
  • Cookware or Meal Programs - Healthy eating is often difficult as a result of lack of resources, or limited time. You can give your family a jumpstart in eating right by purchasing cookware or meal delivery services. Cookware that makes cooking easier and healthier frees up time in the kitchen while meal delivery services ship fresh ingredients and delicious recipes right to their front door. 
Every grandparent wants to purchase gifts that their family will receive, enjoy, and use. Admittedly, however, finding the perfect gifts isn’t always easy. There are always so many new things on the market that narrowing down your options can seem daunting. Fortunately, all it takes is a little consideration to their personal interests. Once you’ve figured out what they love, you can then start looking for gifts that can help them enjoy and indulge even more. Hopefully, this family gift guide has given you some insight on how to find meaningful gifts for everyone no matter what the occasion.
<![CDATA[9 Simple Yet Effective Ways Seniors Can Stay Healthy]]>Mon, 20 May 2019 07:00:00 GMThttp://www.retiredbrains.com/blog/9-simple-yet-effective-ways-seniors-can-stay-healthy​As you age, you face unique and specific health concerns. You’re also more likely to get sick alongside other negative health effects. But there are a few things you can do to improve your health and wellness.

1. Take Supplements

As your body ages, it doesn’t absorb vitamins and nutrients from nutrition the way it once did. Your doctor will likely recommend taking vitamins and minerals on a daily basis in order to prevent deficiencies.

A simple, yet often underappreciated supplement is gummies with CBD. This supplement derived from the hemp plant has no psychoactive properties like marijuana, but it comes with a host of health benefits like pain relief, reduced inflammation, stress relief, and more. It’s a legal supplement in some form in almost every state, and those who have tried it have reported numerous health and wellness benefits with minimal side effects.

Consider using a weekly pill separator to ensure you won’t forget to take your pills daily for optimum wellness and nutrition.

2. Drink More Water

​Everyone could benefit from drinking a little more water, but seniors need it more than most. Every cell, tissue, and organ in your body requires hydration to work properly. If you want your immune system to fight off illnesses, your joints to heal from injury, and your body to stave off serious illnesses like heart disease, hypertension, and diabetes, you’ll drink more water.

Consider getting a water chart and filling it out through the day as you strive to reach your goal of at least 64 oz of water daily. If you’re tech savvy, you might consider an app that keeps track of your water intake instead.

3. Socialize

Mental wellness is just as important as physical, particularly for the aging mind. You’ll soon find that your cognitive responses will slow and struggle more with each passing year. Socializing with others stimulates your brains and continually fires synapses to keep it healthy.

Seniors are often lonely too. They’re at a higher risk for anxiety, depression, dementia, and other mental health issues. Connecting with others who are in similar positions as your own allows you to let off steam that might otherwise build into serious mental health issues.

To make sure you’re getting proper socialization, it might be time to move from your long-time family home to a community where there are more people with similar life experience. There are many communities, both outside of nursing homes and within, that offer the senior-friendly socialization you subconsciously crave.

4. Join a Gym

Exercise will protect your joints, muscles, and tendons from falls and old age. You should achieve about 30 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise every day. A gym membership is ideal because you’ll kill two birds with one stone: exercise and socialization.

Choose a gym with plenty of senior-friendly activities. Many wellness centers like the YMCA have dozens of programs designed to help seniors with varying health problems and concerns stay active and healthy through fitness classes. They’ll teach you how to exercise without hurting yourself and give you opportunities to socialize with those with which you have things in common.

5. Sleep Better

Getting a better night’s sleep is an essential part of physical and mental health. While you sleep, your brain archives memories and replenishes energy stores. Your body repairs torn muscles and invites greater rest and relaxation for the next day. If you’re not getting the recommended 6-9 hours of sleep each night, your physical and mental state will suffer.

The sleep industry offers many potential solutions for those who struggle with sleep. Shop around, asking for reviews and recommendations from trusted sources. Your doctor can likely point you in the right direction for a better night’s sleep if you bring it up at your next appointment.

6. Stimulate Your Brain

Alzheimer’s, dementia, and other memory loss problems affect more than 40 percent​ of those over the age of 65. Each year, about one percent will progress from slight memory loss to dementia or worse, which is devastating to both those experiencing it and their families.

Stimulating your brain is a great way to slow memory-related health issues. Find ways to stimulate your brain. Pull out a crossword puzzle, watch trivia game shows, visit museums, and participate in other activities that require cognitive activity. Regular mental stimulation can delay or even prevent mental health problems at the end of your life.

7. Add Color to Your Plate

The standard American diet involves a lot of yellow and white foods. These hold very little nutritional value. As you age, you already struggle to get enough nutrition in the foods you eat, so eating monotone-colored meals won’t help.

As a general rule of thumb, every time you sit down to a meal, look for opportunities to add color. Carrots, bell peppers, oranges, leafy greens, cabbage, strawberries, and other fruits and vegetables are packed with nutrition and taste to improve your overall diet and health.

8. Have Regular Teeth Examinations

Your mouth is linked to your overall health in ways that you might not realize. Receiving an oral examination once every sixth months will decrease your risks for developing certain illnesses, prevent cavities, and help you keep your original teeth as long as possible.

In the meantime, brush and floss regularly. Good dental hygiene goes a long way in promoting your overall health and wellness.

9. Focus on Prevention

​Some things are inevitable with old age. Your memory will worsen, your hearing and vision will degrade, and you’ll have wrinkles and age spots. There’s nothing you can do about those things. However, there’s a lot you can do to prevent serious health concerns, simply by taking preventative measures.

Prevent falls and injuries by removing trip hazards and improving lighting. 
Receive yearly screenings for cancer and other illnesses at your yearly checkups.
Avoid certain risk factors for heart disease and other illnesses.
Eat healthy and exercise to stave off heart disease.
Quit smoking and limit your alcohol and caffeine intake.

Your prevention efforts will not only keep you healthier—they may also save your life one day!
<![CDATA[Writer's Block: How To Cover a Wedding Story]]>Fri, 17 May 2019 07:00:00 GMThttp://www.retiredbrains.com/blog/writers-block-how-to-cover-a-wedding-storyFor those who write for a living, trying to find the right words to convey a message to your audience can present some challenges. This is particularly true when it comes to telling stories about personal moments like weddings. Capturing the very essence of the celebration to give your readers a true understanding of the occasion requires great skill. 

From color schemes and themes to the best venues and where to find the right wedding catering San Diego, New York, or Florida, a writer must learn to cover a wedding story in a way that provides sound advice and gives engaged couples a glimpse at what their wedding could be like. Though there is certainly more than one way to accomplish this, the best wedding posts should include the following elements. 

Talk to the Couple

Your wedding story won’t be much without some specific details and opinions from the couple themselves. If you have the means to do so, start by having an in-depth conversation with the couple. Find out more about their personalities. 

Where did they meet? How did they fall in love? What was the engagement like? What did they like or dislike about the wedding planning process? What were some special moments? What advice might they have for other couples getting married?

Asking those types of questions helps you to add character and personality to the story. It gives the readers something to identify with from the moment they start reading. If you can’t, however, talk with the couple, or you’re writing a fictional piece, try to create answers to the question based on the interests of your target audience.

Write From Personal Experience

Another angle you might take when writing a wedding blog post or story is to write from your own experiences. Whether you’re married or not, chances are you have some experience with weddings. Talk about how you felt as the bride or groom to be during the planning process, before, during, and after the wedding was over. Discuss how it felt as a guest. What things stood out most? What dishes were your favorite and why? Did you like the venue and entertainment? This gives the story more character and brings it to life for the audience. 

Be Very Descriptive

​To truly give readers a real glimpse of the wedding you have to be descriptive. As you’re writing the piece, try to draw on emotions, your own experiences, and the descriptions​ provided by others. As you walk through the venue, what do you see, how do you feel, what were your first thoughts? When you look at the bridal party what about their attire stood out, what were some of the latest trends, how were they acting? What was the day like? The weather,  mood of the audience, and even the taste and smell of the foods? This provides readers with the opportunity to really visualize themselves being there and being in the moment with you.

Weddings are beautiful and sacred ceremonies celebrated all around the world. When presented with the opportunity to write a post on a true love story it may require you to dig deep. Take advice from other writers and blogs, identify your audience, connect with real-life stories or opinions, and be as descriptive as possible. In following this advice you will create a story that your readers fall in love with every time.
<![CDATA[4 Things New Business Owners Don't Always Think About But Should]]>Fri, 17 May 2019 00:24:15 GMThttp://www.retiredbrains.com/blog/4-things-new-business-owners-dont-always-think-about-but-shouldNo matter where you were born, what economic circles you run in, or the type of education you received, every American has the opportunity to try their hand at being a business owner. However, though owning your own business is a romantic notion, it's also important to note that it's no small feat and takes a ton of hard work and determination to pull off successfully. There are a few things you should prepare ahead for when starting a new business, things that you might never use, but need to prepare for anyway.

Legal Issues

Many small business owners think they don't need the services of a lawyer, especially when they're just starting out. This couldn't be further from the truth. There are many eventualities where an attorney could be needed, such as debt consolidation, business planning, and asset protection. They can also make sure your business plan and licensing paperwork is accurate and filed correctly. It's better to have a lawyer on retainer for your small business than to be without one when you need them. To find one, a simple internet search for a small business lawyer San Diego if you happen to be in Southern California, should yield several good results.

An Emergency Plan

In the rosy haze of starting a new business, any kind of disaster is unconscionable. However, in reality, lots of things can happen that are beyond your control. Natural disasters, power outages, fires, floods, internet connectivity issues. Do you know what you would do if your office building were to flood and you had to relocate for weeks? What if your servers go down? Do you have offsite backups? 

If you don't have a clue on how to answer any of these questions, you need an emergency plan before you ever open your doors for the first time. It doesn't have to be an elaborate plan, but having the basics in place could save you a lot of grief if the worst should happen.


Even though the thought of expanding might sound crazy when you're first starting out, but building in scalability from the beginning is a wise move. This could mean investing in a larger network server now to save the cost of upgrading later, for example. The same applies to things like phone systems, POS networks and even leasing a copier. Less tangible things might include just a paper plan for how you will expand when the time comes. Is a second location the right move? Is the office space you have going to support 50% more staff? Planning is key to a successful expansion.

Cleaning Services

​No business owner wants to stay after hours to give their business a good cleaning. However, bathrooms, windows, floors, carpeting, and other janitorial services have to be performed regularly. Since you're already going to be busy making a name for yourself in your chosen field, it's a good idea to hire a company that does the commercial cleaning for you. In this way, you will be able to concentrate on growing your business through marketing and hard work instead of putting your efforts into cleaning your business. If you have an outdoor space, don't forget to plan for its upkeep as well.

​Starting a small business is daunting, exciting, frightening and oh so rewarding...if you do it right, that is. Preparing for the eventualities beforehand will help you and your business succeed in the long run. 
<![CDATA[Tips and Information for Keeping Credit Cards Safe While Traveling]]>Wed, 15 May 2019 07:00:00 GMThttp://www.retiredbrains.com/blog/tips-and-information-for-keeping-credit-cards-safe-while-traveling​Many thieves are usually preying on travelers because this is the time that your guard is down. Hence, you need to be careful whenever you are on a trip. As you enjoy yourself, be sure to keep your cards safe. Here are a few tips:

​1. Share Your Itinerary with Your Bank

If you are in New York and try to pay for dinner in Los Angeles, your bank might suspect fraud and suspend the card. Giving your bank a rough itinerary of a trip you are planning for is now a norm for travelers, particularly if you are doing international travel. Add a week to your return date. This will ensure that in case of an emergency and you can’t return as planned, there are resources to make new hotel arrangements or pay for extra hotel nights. Your credit is most valuable when you are stranded.

2. Pack Well

Pack your wallet similar to a suitcase by taking what’s necessary only. While the PCI Security Council helps to ensure data security compliance among all major financial institutions, that doesn’t mean you need to bring every card you own. Hence, be sure to carry an ATM or debit card along with two or three major credit cards. The rest can be left at home. Double check to ensure the cards you bring will be accepted in the destination country; most cards are accepted in most places, but there are always exceptions. Your bank or credit card provider will be more than able to supply this information.

3. Minimize the Cash Withdrawal Limits

​Debit cards are great ways of obtaining money, and they are also perfect ways for changing currencies. Most debit cards, particularly those that have a visa logo or MasterCard, will work at most cash machines overseas. With a debit or ATM card, the majority of the banks restrict the amount withdrawn in 24 hours. If you are going on a trip with the card, you might need to call up and temporarily reduce the limit. Hence, in case your card information or the card is stolen, and you report quickly, your loss is mitigated. Additionally, you can have a different travel account that is not connected to your typical savings and checking accounts. Deposit on the account the amount you plan on using during the vacation, and use that card during the trip. Therefore, if someone steals from your account, your regular accounts will still be safe.

​4. Have Emergency Phone Numbers

​If you are on a trip and both your wallet and phone are stolen, it might be hard to report the theft if you don’t have the phone numbers of your card issuer written somewhere. Maintain a list of phone numbers of your card issuer to ensure you can call them immediately someone steals your card or card information. Have these numbers in your phone and also keep a written list somewhere safe that is not your wallet. You will be able to put your accounts on hold within minutes of the theft.

5. Ask Hotels Regarding Card Security

​The hotel sector reported eight percent of all card hacks in 2011. While this a reduction from 38 percent figure in 2009, it is still substantial. Hence, be sure to keep credit cards safe while staying at your hotel. Remember to inquire if the hotel computer system has tokenization or encryption technology, which safeguards private data. If you need to receive a package while abroad don't take the safety of those for granted either. One super safe option is to use a package locker. Nowadays, companies exist to manage the delivery and safekeeping of packages on a large scale for living communities or even businesses. Ask your hotel if they have such a service or how you can safely receive a package in the local area. 

​If you want to avoid or restrict the theft of monies in your bank account, be sure to keep these five tips in mind. You will not have to cut your trip short because all your money is gone.
<![CDATA[Helpful Tips for Older Driver: How to Handle Yourself Behind the Wheel]]>Tue, 14 May 2019 16:15:41 GMThttp://www.retiredbrains.com/blog/helpful-tips-for-older-driver-how-to-handle-yourself-behind-the-wheelDriving a car is an essential part of our lives. We spend thousands of hours at the wheel. Day after day, we sharpen our driving skills. It seems it’ll go on forever. Yet, things change as you get older. The seniors aren’t so good drivers as they would be. The level of concentration decreases. The sharpness of eyesight worsens. The reaction rate deteriorates.
​Still, you don’t have to give up the driving pleasure. The following tips will help you to make the driving process safe and comfortable even at the age of 70+.

​#1. Health Condition Is of Primary Importance

You will never get the driving license unless you pass the medical test. The rules demand to take a medical examination every five years after 70. you have to renew it when you turn 75. In older age, however, it’s recommended to visit your physician at least once a year. The following aspects should be examined:
  • the blood pressure;
  • the condition of eyesight;
  • the mental ability to control the vehicle is in focus, too.
In fact, the lives of many people depend upon the condition of your health. An unexpected heart attack often leads to accidents. One more point is important. According to statistics, accidents with seniors often have fatal results. If you feel bad, don’t use a vehicle. If the doctor says to wear glasses, you must do it.

#2. Insurance Is a Must-Have

​Life insurance is one of the most important things to have. It gives financial help in the case of a mishap. When it comes to drivers, car insurance is of primary importance. As a matter of fact, the seniors are accident-prone. The older people suffer grave injuries and more fatalities than younger people. The price of car insurance for older drives is more expensive in comparison with insurance for middle-aged ones.
The car insurance coverage differs from region to region. The most common points include:
  • damage and injuries you cause others in accidents;
  • your own medical costs;
  • collision payment;
  • payments in case your car is stolen or damaged by anything other than car
  • accidents.
​There are many extra options. They may include rental reimbursement, roadside assistance, and full glass coverage. Car insurance is a perfect way to avoid unexpected expenses.

#3. Being at the Wheel

There is a list of items that always should be present in the car of seniors:
  • first aid kit. The pain-killers or antibiotics, adhesive tape, and band-aids are able to save your life. If you have serious trouble with your health, you should keep the necessary medicines at hand;
  • documents with contact information of your relatives or friends;
  • emergency mobile phone;
  • chargers;
  • the warm clothes and blankets;
  • some snack and water;
  • batteries and flashlight.
You should keep in mind that long-distance driving isn’t a good idea for seniors. If you have to span distant ground, it’s better to travel with a company.

​So, driving when you are a person in years is a reality. You have only to be careful and follow certain rules.
<![CDATA[Why a Will Could Give You Peace of Mind]]>Fri, 10 May 2019 12:40:19 GMThttp://www.retiredbrains.com/blog/why-a-will-could-give-you-peace-of-mindA Will is a legal document that allows you to write your wishes of what you want to happen to your property or belongings and who you want to leave them to. It is an important thing to have because, if you do not have one, the belongings you want to give to your family members might not go to the people you want them to. If you are looking for peace of mind about where your estate will go when you die, keep reading to find out why a Will is right for you.

You Can Make Decisions

One of the reasons for making a Will is because you can decide who you want to leave belongings to. When it comes to making a Will, you get to make all of the decisions. However, if you don’t have a Will in place, money or belongings can go to people in your family that you haven’t spoken to for years. This means that the family members that were involved with the relative that passed away will not get anything. Things may also get turned over to the legal system. The Treasury has a host of protocols they use in the event that someone dies without a Will and your family members and close friends could get little say in it.

Avoids Arguments with Family

When writing a Will, you can decide who gets what or you can decide where your things will be put. However, if you do not have a Will in place, your family members might be more inclined to have disagreements and arguments because they might think that your belongings should go to other people whereas, some might think they are entitled to more than what they should be. If you have a family who is prone to bickering like this, a Will lets you know that no accidents can happen after you have gone.

Things can Happen Unexpectedly

There are many reasons why you need a will; you do not know when a life-threatening disease or accident could happen to you or another family member. If you don’t have a Will put in place before something life-threatening happens, any wishes you have might not be honoured. If you know that you have something which you want to give to a family member or friend, make it legally binding as soon as possible.

Can Make Changes at Any Time

Another reason you should make a Will is that you can make changes to it at any time you have to, so for example, if you want to add more people to your Will or take people away. All it takes is a visit to your solicitor.

In Conclusion

Overall it is important to make sure you have a will put in place to ensure that you can give your family your belongings that you want to give them. This will avoid arguments happening throughout the family and ensure everyone is left with something that you want them to have. If you are looking to put your affairs in order and approach the end of your life with complete peace of mind, you are going to need a Will.
<![CDATA[Building vs. Buying Your Dream Home for Retirement: The Pros and Cons]]>Wed, 01 May 2019 02:15:49 GMThttp://www.retiredbrains.com/blog/building-vs-buying-your-dream-home-for-retirement-the-pros-and-cons​You've thought about every part of your retirement from where you want to travel to, to how you're going to make extra money to supplement your already growing retirement fund. Now, it's time to make the decision between buying and building your retirement home. Read the few pros and cons to each to help you make an informed decision.

​Pros and Cons of Building

Pro: Trained Professionals
​One of the most significant advantages of having a home designed and built for your retirement years is you get to choose the trained professionals that do the job for you. From the most reputable builder to hiring a master of construction management to design your home, you are in control of who works on every aspect of the house you choose to have built.
​Con: Licenses and Regulations
There are more steps to building a home than buying one. First, you have to find the land, then make sure it's on top of sewer and water systems. After that, environmental checks must be done, as well as securing permits and licenses. These are things that your builder can help you with, but they can still be a hassle.
Pro: It's Greener
When you buy an existing home, you inherit that home’s problems. There could be hidden problems, such as mold in the basement or rotting wood that isn't discovered until after the paperwork is signed. Building your own home allows you to move into a clean house, one that is environmentally friendly as well
Con: More Money is Needed Now
​There are more costs associated with building a home, one of them being that you are going to have to find a way to pay for another place to live while your home is being built. 

​Pros and Cons of Buying 

Pro: It's a Streamlined Process
​Local agents are amazing helpers. For example, if you want to retire to San Diego County, having a reputable Carlsbad real estate agent in your corner can streamline the process of buying your home exponentially. All you have to do is search for the right home, make an offer, and you'll be moved into your dream home and enjoying your retirement before you know it.
Con: Repairs and Maintenance
When you buy your dream home instead of building it, you aren't going to get precisely what you want. Repairs, remodeling, and reshaping the house can run into the thousands of dollars. And that’s on top of what you already paid in closing costs, down payments, mortgage fees, etc.!
Retirement is a time that many people dream about as they get older and grow tired of the everyday rat race that is a traditional nine to five job. One of the things that many retirees look forward to most is finding their dream home for retirement. This is the home that you want to stay in for the rest of your life, so it's essential to get it right. That's why weighing the pros and cons of each is so important.
<![CDATA[What to Do if You Suspect a Loved One Died Due to Negligence]]>Wed, 10 Apr 2019 07:00:00 GMThttp://www.retiredbrains.com/blog/what-to-do-if-you-suspect-a-loved-one-died-due-to-negligence​Losing a loved one is one of life's most challenging experiences. Whether your loved one is a small child or a beloved grandparent, we are never ready to say goodbye to those closest to us. However, this process is even more devastating when you suspect that the death could have been prevented. If you believe that your loved one has been a victim of negligence, medical malpractice, or abuse at the hand of healthcare providers, keep the following information in mind.

Seek Professional Assistance

One of the most important steps you can take is finding professional legal assistance as soon as possible. If you've been researching wrongful death suits, you will likely find an overwhelming amount of information. Instead of trying to tackle everything yourself, contact a reputable wrongful death attorney to see if they’re willing to take the case.

Most quality firms provide one-hour consultations at no cost to you, so you can get answers to your basic questions without any risk. As you explain your case and your suspicions, the wrongful death attorney will let you know whether he believes your case is strong enough to proceed. You'll also discover helpful information about deadlines, statutes of limitation, and other vital legal guidelines in your specific state.

Gather Documentation

As soon as you suspect a loved one has died due to medical malpractice, we recommend that you write down everything you remember. Make notes of dates, times, and personnel, and include as many details as possible. You never know what information might prove to be the most helpful in your case, and you want to document everything while the information is still fresh in your mind. If possible, take photos to provide further support to your claim.

You will likely speak with numerous medical personnel before you get to the point of contacting an attorney, so we recommend that you document these conversations, too. Most private conversations cannot legally be recorded without consent, but you can make notes of who you talked to when the conversation took place, and what was discussed.

Your attorney is here to help you gather this documentation, interview witnesses, and perform other important tasks, so you'll be working as a team as your case is built. In many cases, proving claims can be time-consuming and complicated, so please feel free to ask your attorney questions at any time so that you feel comfortable about what is occurring.

Take Care of Yourself

Taking up the fight against a healthcare system or provider is not an easy task. It is even more draining when you are grieving a loss. Because of this, we want to encourage you to take care of yourself. When you have a professional attorney that you can trust, you should no longer feel like you are fighting the system alone.

You honor the memory of your loved one by doing everything possible to keep yourself physically, emotionally, and mentally healthy. When you get overwhelmed by the possible negligence or malpractice, don't forget to fill your heart with good memories of your loved one and the happy times that you spend together.

It's OK to take as many breaks as necessary as you are working through this process. Surround yourself with supportive, loving people, and treat yourself to whatever relieves your stress. On hard days, call a friend to meet for lunch, schedule a relaxing massage, or simply enjoy a calm walk outside in nature.

Finding a negligence or medical malpractice suit can be an emotional task, but you can find justice for your loved one by working with a professional who has your best interests in mind.
<![CDATA[Expensive and Unhealthy Habits You’ll Want to Break Before Retirement]]>Tue, 09 Apr 2019 07:00:00 GMThttp://www.retiredbrains.com/blog/expensive-and-unhealthy-habits-youll-want-to-break-before-retirementHow prepared are you to retire? You may be putting money into a savings plan, paying down debt, and mapping out your retirement life, but there’s a bit more that needs to be done if you’re going to retire happily. For instance, kicking expensive and unhealthy habits to the curb. You see, once you retire, you don’t have the backup of a steady check nor the youthfulness and health from years prior.

If you made a bad money decision or participate in unhealthy habits when you were employed full-time or young and healthy, chances are you could wait until your next paycheck or bounce back from a health problem. Now, however, you’re getting older and your income is fixed meaning you have to develop good habits that will prolong your life and stretch your budget. Here is a look at some of the most expensive and unhealthy habits to start changing today. 

Not Using a Budget

Do you have any idea where your money is going every pay cycle? Are you using your income to its fullest potential? Are there things you could do to cut back and save more? There are questions a budget can easily answer for you.

Neglecting to keep track of your finances in retirement, however, can cause you to fall deeper into debt and drain your savings faster. Start using a budget now to prepare you for the future. There are plenty of applications and software you can use to make budgeting easier.

Smoking and Drinking

​If you’re nearing retirement and are still engaging in smoking cigarettes or drinking alcohol, you need to kick these habits - and fast. The longer you hold onto these vices the more damage it does to your body. Both increase your risk of developing diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease, and cancer and reduce your lifespan by years. Not to mention, they’re both very expensive habits to keep up.

If you’ve been a smoker or drinker for years, beating these habits may be easier said than done. Fortunately, there are ways you can start the process of letting them go for good. For example, you could order a vape kit which doesn’t contain tobacco and begin there. Since vape liquids have varying levels of nicotine, you could wean yourself off of cigarettes. As for drinking, perhaps removing it from your house, steering clear of environments where drinking is involved, and going to addiction treatment if you’re suffering from addiction.

​Not Exercising

When you’re younger, not exercising isn’t necessarily a big deal. Your metabolisms are high, immune systems are strong, and, for the most part, your health is under control. As you get older, however, your mind and body don’t function the same. They require diet and exercise to remain in optimal health.

Start incorporating physical activities into your day. Whether you go to the gym, start walking around your neighborhood, dance while you’re cleaning the house, walking further from the parking lot to your job, using the stairs instead of an elevator, or walking the dog regularly, it all contributes to shedding pounds, strengthening your body, and enhancing your mind.

Impulsive Spending

How many times have you walked into a store or searched a website and saw something you wanted but didn’t necessarily need? Though it’s nice to treat yourself to something you like on occasion, impulsive spending money can result in serious debt. If you keep this habit up in retirement, you’ll run through your monthly income very quickly.

To stop shopping impulsively you should first start by living with a budget. Having a designated amount to spend on miscellaneous things allows you to treat yourself within reason. Another way to cut down on your spending habits is to try the 24-hour rule. If you see something you want, wait 24 hours before deciding to purchase it. If in the 24 hours you don’t have that same intense urge to buy, then don’t.

Retirement is supposed to be one of the best times in your life. You’ve worked, raised a family, and navigated the ups and downs of life and as a result, made it to the other side. If you want to enjoy these years of your life, it is imperative to keep your health and finances first. Kicking the above-mentioned habits now will help with ensuring that you can live a retirement lifestyle you’ve always dreamed of.
<![CDATA[End Of The Line, Or Is It? Dealing With Infertility as an Older Adult]]>Fri, 29 Mar 2019 15:35:28 GMThttp://www.retiredbrains.com/blog/how-to-create-a-strong-bond-with-your-surrogate
Almost all living things are designed to reproduce. That’s simply evolution and survival at work. It is one of the most natural of functions and to some, becoming a parent and being able to raise the next generation is the defining moment and ultimate purpose in life.

But not everyone is so blessed to have the ability to reproduce. Some are unable to because of an accident, because of their physiology, and others, sadly, simply are unable to find someone to share this miracle with.

It’s a frightful prospect to know that your branch of the family tree could end with you. It can be a painful realization to find that your life was not as fruitful as you might have wanted. After all, what’s the point of having everything when you don’t have anyone to share it with? So, what should you do?

Acknowledge The Situation

The first step to solving any problem is to acknowledge that it even exists and that there’s a need to determine whether to fix it or accept it. The importance of being able to express these feelings is vital in being able to come up with a solution. Keeping these negative feelings inside is going to cause emotional distress and will ultimately break you down. Face your problems head-on.

Be Honest With Your Loved Ones

Your greatest support is going to come from your partner or your family. You won’t be able to count on that support if they don’t even know what’s going on. Make sure to share your feelings with them in a healthy, positive way. Challenges shouldn’t break bonds, but rather, strengthen them.

Join an Infertility Support Group

It’s also important to find people who are empathic of you, those who completely understand what you’re going through because they, too, are going through the same thing. By talking to those who are at all different stages of the infertility journey, you may find the support and stories of hope you’re looking for.

Seek Therapy

When none of the abovementioned tips work, then it’s time to seek professional help. Fertility counselors are trained to help you overcome the initial hurdles of infertility. They are able to provide clients with insight and offer sound advice. They are your best option if you’re unable to express your feelings in a healthy way.


Once you’re over the initial hurdles and you’ve already accepted your situation, you may want to either remedy it or simply live with it. If you really want to give it a try, you can consider opting for surrogacy. It’s unconventional, but not as uncommon as you might think. It’s slowly becoming a more accepted method of growing a family. This surrogacy blog even illustrates the surrogacy process and provides stories and tips on what to expect.


​If surrogacy isn’t the thing for you, then you can also consider adopting a child instead. You will be assessed by a social worker in your ability to exercise parental authority over the child, as well as other requirements such as being at least 16 years older than the adoptee. There are many children who are in need of a permanent home and this could be an opportunity to make a difference in the life of a child.
<![CDATA[Downsizing After Retirement to Supplement Your Pension]]>Fri, 29 Mar 2019 05:38:45 GMThttp://www.retiredbrains.com/blog/downsizing-after-retirement-to-supplement-your-pension​Many people look forward to retirement, as it finally gives them the opportunity to do something with their golden years rather than worrying about working for hours each day. However, one thing that can hamper your ambitions for finally enjoy life is finances. While you may be receiving an income from your pension, this may be nowhere near as much as your income was. In addition, it may not be enough to fund the type of retirement you want.

So, what can you do in order to fund your retirement and supplement your pension? Well, there are steps you can take in order to cut some costs such as looking for cheaper providers for utilities or finding cheap health insurance to save money. However, one major move you can make it is look at downsizing your property.

Some of the Key Benefits of Downsizing

​There are many people who come to retirement age and find themselves still living in the family property they have been in for years. With the kids generally having left home by this time, the property is often far bigger than you need. Even though your mortgage may be fully paid by this time in your life, you still have to take other points into consideration such as the cost of running a larger property.

Many retired people spend years struggling along on a modest pension while they have tens of thousands – maybe hundreds of thousands – tied up in their property. By selling up and downsizing, you can continue to enjoy a mortgage-free life by paying outright for your new property from the money you get for your property. At the same time, you will also have additional money to put in the bank, enjoy your retirement, and leave to loved ones.

The cost of running a larger home can also make a big difference to your finances. Paying the bills on a larger property can result in your spending far more than you need to when it comes to your bills. This is wasted money if you only make use of part of the property. By downsizing to a smaller property that is cheaper to run, you will not only be able to make use of the money that is tied up in your current property, but you will also be able to reduce how much you have to pay on your bills and expenses.

There is one more major benefit that comes with downsizing. Looking after and maintaining a larger property can be time-consuming and stressful, particularly when you are trying to enjoy your retirement and relax. With a smaller property, you will find it far easier to look after your home. Cleaning, maintenance, and general upkeep will be far easier than with a larger property. 

So, if you want to tap into your equity to help make retirement more enjoyable, downsizing could be the ideal solution. This is a great way to get money in the bank and make life easier once you start drawing your pension.
<![CDATA[Ways to finish your college homework faster]]>Wed, 27 Mar 2019 07:00:00 GMThttp://www.retiredbrains.com/blog/ways-to-finish-your-college-homework-fasterIt’s no secret that many students have a thing against homework. It’s often been called an unnecessary problem that students have to deal with, and homework is often considered ineffective. However, it’s still present in the system, so it means that students will just have to deal with it. There are ways to go about when doing homework so that you’re more effective, because a lot of times you just want to be done as quick as possible.

​Always have a plan

Plenty of students start doing their homework randomly. That means that they just jump in the first thing they see when they open the backpack, and that there’s no plan for what and how they’re doing. This method is often considered very ineffective and a waste of time, because having a plan is always superior. Creating a list with what you have to do, as well as allocating the amount of time you think you’ll need, are definitely the best way to approach writing homework. Planning out everything means that you’ll spend less time figuring things on the go, and more time enjoying your free hours.

Never work in crowded surroundings

​In many cases, homework is serious work, and it’ll require your full focus and awareness to properly complete it. Sometimes even having a single person around just doing their thing can be distracting. That’s why you need to find out where your personal groove is, and use that place to its full potential. It’s almost always for the best to work in a secluded spot, one without a TV to slow you down, or without too many distractions that can take away from your focus.

Turn off unnecessary devices

Unless you’re sure that you’ll need your computer or phone, never have them turned on while you’re doing homework. It’s no secret that electronic devices are the biggest distraction for work, so having them off can really do wonders. Instead of feeling pressured to return a text or check social media, you’ll be entirely immersed in your work. Whatever it is that’s normally distracting you can wait for a couple of hours while you finish with your obligations.

Get outside help​

Sometimes you just don’t have the time to manage all of your homework and projects. Instead of missing on deadlines and hoping that you can get an extension, you can easily find help from someone else. Using a college paper writing service is definitely a smart move, because it not only saves you on time, but it pretty much gives you a guarantee that the work will be done with proper research and on the right topic. You should consider using help, because at the very least it saves up on time.

​Drink water and snack while working

You’re probably doing homework at the end of the day. That’s when you’re tired the most, and you’ll probably want to do nothing else than simply lay down and relax. That’s your body’s way of telling you that your reserves are depleted, and it’s up to you to bring yourself back to full speed. Water is something you should never forget, because it’s smart to be hydrated at all times, but also don’t forget about snacks. Snacking on something that will keep your brain working for an extra hour or two is definitely a smart choice.

Take breaks between work​

Sometimes when you’re extra tired your mind and your body just aren’t in sync enough. Those are moments that everyone recognizes, and in those cases you should most definitely take a short break. Pushing through it will lead to worse results, which in turn might lead you to have to redo a large portion of your homework. That’s something you want to avoid because it’s the complete opposite of efficiency.

​Always reward yourself at the end

Human brains work on a reward system. If you feel like you’ve done a good job, then definitely do something about that. Whether that’s simply eating a tasty treat, or playing a game, or even just going for a walk, rewards have an incredibly positive effect. Make sure to utilize them as much as possible.

Homework can be tricky because it often requires a lot of your time. With some proper planning and preparation you can become very efficient and save on time.
<![CDATA[What to Know About Genealogical DNA Tests]]>Mon, 25 Mar 2019 19:07:45 GMThttp://www.retiredbrains.com/blog/what-to-know-about-genealogical-dna-testsThroughout time, people have been on a quest to find their origins. Some individuals search through history books, and some people search through different religions. Recently, science has offered a new option to get answers. Genealogical DNA tests look at genomes in the blood and give an estimate of what ethnicities a person comes from.

This test has gained popularity worldwide due to the ease and speed of it.

Although the idea of a genealogical DNA test sounds promising, there are a few drawbacks to be mindful of. Genetics is a field that scientists have only begun to understand. For this reason, the test results are not 100 percent accurate.

The results of a genealogical DNA test can cause a serious identity crisis for a person if the test says something different from what he or she was raised to believe. We often grow accustomed to our alleged family roots, so finding out we aren’t really Irish or Italian can mess with our heads. On top of that, the results may not even be correct. Therefore, take the results as the estimates that they are and be sure to mentally prepare for unwanted results.

If you have ordered a DNA testing kit, be sure to research the company performing the results. Sites such as DNAGeek provide a trove of insight into how these tests vary from one another. For instance, does the company keep some of your DNA for any reason? Does the company share your results with any outside sources? These are important questions to have answered before submitting your sample.

Unfortunately, this act does give companies the freedom to share information under certain circumstances. For example, if obvious identifying characteristics are removed from your sample, then the company can sell it. Therefore, privacy is a big factor in deciding whether to submit a DNA testing kit.

Aside from the drawbacks, these tests have done a lot to help people. While this test can weaken a person's cultural identity, there are plenty of testimonies that say the test results helped to strengthen it. Many adoptees are not as concerned with what country their ancestors came from, as much as they are about who their immediate family is today. The genealogical test has helped to reunite adoptees to their biological families. Since this test goes deeper than paternity or maternity, people can find brothers, sisters, aunts, uncles, and grandparents. The results are kept on a database and alerts are sent out when there is a match to someone else's results.

Genealogical DNA tests are a revolutionary development. So far, the benefits are outweighing the downsides. If you or someone you know is looking to take one of these tests, be sure to educate and prepare yourself for the results. Also, remember that the tests are not all the way accurate. Knowing your background can give you more insight into what you are as a person, but it will not tell you who you are. Therefore, when taking these tests, do not overanalyze it. Take it for what it is, interesting and informative.]]>
<![CDATA[Life Quotes to Encourage You for Your Accomplishments]]>Wed, 20 Mar 2019 22:36:10 GMThttp://www.retiredbrains.com/blog/life-quotes-to-encourage-you-for-your-accomplishmentsBig achievements require steady persistence and effort, and sometimes the path to success is long and meandering. At moments like this, when we feel demotivated and exhausted, inspiration is a powerful force that propels us forward. A few words of wisdom from people who have overcome all the hurdles and written their names in history can help you regain the energy you lost.

Do not overlook the importance of inspiration. The most monotonous work can still feel meaningful if you keep your goal in sight. These life quotes may bring the spark you need to reach your target and continue striving for perfection in spite of all odds. After all, the people whose words you will find below, knew what they were talking about.

​Powerful Words

​1. Perseverance

As the football star Pele, said, “Success is no accident. It is hard work, perseverance, learning, studying, sacrifice and most of all, love of what you are doing or learning to do”. Do not give up too easily and walk on.

Politician Colin Powell would agree with the famous sportsman, as he once admitted, “A dream doesn't become reality through magic; it takes sweat, determination, and hard work”. On another occasion, the statesman and four-star United States general rephrased it as, “There are no secrets to success. It is the result of preparation, hard work, and learning from failure”.

2. Find meaning in routine

If you feel soul-crushed by a repetitive job, heed the words of Dwayne Johnson: “Success isn't always about greatness. It's about consistency. Consistent hard work leads to success. Greatness will come”. The effort you make today may be crucial to your quest to achieve great things further on.
​Even Pope Paul VI praised the value of hard work when he famously said, “All life demands struggle. Those who have everything given to them become lazy, selfish, and insensitive to the real values of life. The very striving and hard work that we so constantly try to avoid is the major building block in the person we are today.”

​3. Hard work vs. talent

Importantly, talent is no guarantee of success. No matter how gifted you are, you won’t go places unless you put in real work. According to the world-famous Stephen King, “Talent is cheaper than table salt. What separates the talented individual from the successful one is a lot of hard work”. If sportspeople inspire you most, consider the quote from the football quarterback Robert Griffin III, “Hard work pays off - hard work beats talent any day, but if you're talented and work hard, it's hard to be beaten”.

Words of advice from people who managed to achieve fame, prominence and wealth, may be just the thing you need in times of discouragement. Stay the course and never lose sight of your goal. Eventually, your hard work will pay off.
<![CDATA[A guide to downsizing]]>Fri, 15 Mar 2019 20:14:40 GMThttp://www.retiredbrains.com/blog/a-guide-to-downsizingDeciding to downsize in order to prepare for retirement is becoming an increasingly attractive option to make. There is an estimated 2.5 million people in the UK that move into smaller properties in order to improve their cash flow and disposable income. However, you may be wondering whether it would be the right option for you. We have put together a guide to downsizing, explaining the main things you need to know about it.

Why should I downsize?

There are a number of different circumstances where downsizing could be worth considering. For example it is particularly popular option with ‘empty nesters’ whose children have now permanently left home, and therefore choose to downsize so that they can use the equity that has been raised to boost their income before, or during retirement.

Others may downsize as they are finding it difficult to get approved for a new mortgage, meaning they have no other choice but to downsize.

From a financial position, downsizing can give you a huge injection of cash, providing that you own the home outright and have paid off your mortgage. Equally if you have not paid your mortgage, you will be going to paying a lower monthly rate, which should free up some funds for leisure, holidays or to supplement your pension.

Plus, if you are planning a new lifestyle change whether it is buying a boat, new car, holiday or buying a place overseas, you can do so with the money you have freed up, without having to take out personal loans or similar.

Downsizing options

​If you are downsizing with no urgent debts outstanding, you can take your time with the housing market and find the best option for you. It is important to plan ahead and find a place that is accessible and easy to use for old age. Having large staircases or a long distance to park the car is not ideal for seniors.

It is worth telling your estate agent (if you are using one to sell your house) about your intentions to downsize. A professional might be able to advise whether you should move or consider making improvements to the home. One has to consider the turbulence of the property market and which option is going to yield the best returns.

If you would like to sell your property sooner rather than later, you could look at getting in contact with a specialist house buying service, who can considerably speed up the moving process on your behalf. Providing that you accept the offer and are happy with the terms and conditions, this could mean you end up moving into your new, smaller property in just a matter of weeks.

Things to consider when downsizing

Before you make the commitment of deciding to downsize, you should consider the following key points:
  • Remember hidden moving costs: don’t get too caught up in the idea of moving in order to release equity if you have not also taken into consideration other costs of moving too, such as: agent’s fees, surveys, repairs and removals. Be sure to factor in these costs before you decide to downsize.
  • Plan ahead: you should always keep in mind that you are making a long-term decision, and therefore you should be considering things such as having grandchildren to stay over, or having an office if you need to work in the future.
  • Location: The location of a property makes a big difference to its value. If you downsize in a high-end area, it may not help you access much finance.
  • Think about space: you should seriously consider whether you would be able to function in your day- to-day life by moving into a smaller property. Would you still be able to do the things important to you, such as entertaining family and friends, or pursue your hobbies? Taking into account just how much space you need, or how important it is to you, is vital when thinking about downsizing.
  • Think about storage options: the last thing you want when you move into a new smaller property is not having enough storage to put all your possessions. This is why it is important to remember not only the potential money you could save, but at what expense does this have on your comfort in your new home?
  • Consider selling or donating: When looking to downsize, it is wise to think about which items you really want to take with you in your new, smaller property. Now is the best to get rid of all the things you don’t need by either selling at an auction, online or at a car boot sale, or alternatively you can donate items to a local charity.
<![CDATA[How to borrow from family and friends in the right way]]>Thu, 14 Mar 2019 07:00:00 GMThttp://www.retiredbrains.com/blog/how-to-borrow-from-family-and-friends-in-the-right-way​Borrowing from family and friends is the most popular way to borrow money in the UK and indeed across the world. Where mortgage borrowing was £73.5 billion last year, borrowing between parents and children was around £88 billion for things including new homes, cars, debt consolidation and towards new businesses.

But when money comes between close relatives and friends, it can get ugly and can lead to conflict if not handled in the right way. We proudly offer some of the top tips for borrow successfully between friends and family

​Understand what the money is for

​Being transparent between all parties is very important and this starts with understanding what the money is for. The person who is lending the money typically wants to know what their investment is going towards and can feel betrayed if it is used improperly.

Essentially, they want to know that their money is being used for good such as paying off debts or helping the person get a start on life through their living situation or business. The last thing they want to hear is that their money is misused for recreational purposes, illegal activity or consumer spending.

Being clean and honest from the beginning is a good way to lend between friends and avoid any confusion down the line.

Putting repayment terms in place

​When borrowing small amounts between family and friends such as £10 here and there, the money is rarely questioned and there is typically no need for interest or repayment. Many people just simply write it off or repay at their next availability.

However, for larger sums that run in the thousands, it can be worth putting repayment terms in place such as getting repaid in full by the end of the month, year or in monthly installments.

This adds a bit more formality to the transaction and manages expectations for all of those involved.

​Do you charge interest?

Between close relatives and friends, it is not common to charge interest on an informal loan such as this. However, some social groups expect interest to be charged and this is likely to be determined between both parties. The rates charged should be more competitive than your local bank or if you went with a direct lender for bad credit, where you might be limited to higher rates.

Alternatively, some parents or friends may wish to take a percentage of sales or a stake in the business that they are investing in, preferring to take a long-term view than the immediate returns from a loans agreement.

Using parents or friends as a guarantor

If the parent or friend is unsure whether to lend money, they can act as a guarantor for a loan. This means co-signing a loan agreement and agreeing to repay any interest if the main borrower cannot keep up with payments. This can be a great way to give someone an opportunity, without having to put all the money upfront. However, there are risks, since the guarantor can be left with a huge sum to pay if it does not go to plan.

Should you write a formal loans agreement?

​The Money Advice Service embraces the idea of putting together a formal loan agreement between family and friends. This can consist of just a few pages outlining the terms of the loan including rates charged, repayment expectation, amount borrower and late penalties if viable.

This does not need to be made by a lawyer, but can be put together on a word document and signed by both parties – for the very least to manage expectations.

Provided that you cover these areas, borrowing between family and friends can be very productive and effective. Some of our favourite restaurants and start-ups have thrived under this model including Facebook, Apple and Amazon!
<![CDATA[Making Money Following Retirement]]>Tue, 05 Mar 2019 00:06:24 GMThttp://www.retiredbrains.com/blog/making-money-following-retirementIn years gone by, many people who retired from work found themselves at a loss what to do in order to keep themselves busy and active. After years of working, it can come as quite a shock to have literally nothing to do, and this sort of lifestyle simply doesn’t suit some people.

Fortunately, in today’s digital age, there are far more ways to keep busy and even earn money after you have retired. Just because you have officially retired from work, you still have financial commitments ranging from housing costs through to utility bills and life insurance policy costs. By taking advantage of modern technology, you can keep yourself busy and make some extra cash to
supplement your pension.

Some Simple Ways to Make Money with Modern Tech

By turning to modern technology, you can make extra cash and keep yourself active and busy even after retirement. Perhaps you enjoy doing research and have a flair for writing. If so, you could offer online content writing services, which is something you can do from the comfort of your own home by setting up a home office. You can work as many or as few hours as you like doing something like this, which makes it an ideal choice for those that want to strike a balance between keeping busy and enjoying their retirement.

Maybe you have a flair for baking or crafts such as making jewelry, greetings cards, or scented candles. If so, you can create all of these at home and then advertise them online. You can sell them via a range of different portals such as on social media sites, on sites such as eBay, or even by setting up your own website. If you cannot create your own goods but you would like to make money from selling online, you can consider opening up an eBay store through which you can buy and sell items to make a healthy regular income.

If you have a background in accountancy or book-keeping, you could also offer your services to businesses on a part-time basis after you retire. There are many businesses and individuals looking for experienced number-crunchers, so this is a great way to put your skills and experience to good use, keep yourself busy, and make some extra cash. Again, you can do this from the privacy and
comfort of your own home and work the hours and days that suit you and your retirement plans.

Simple Solutions for Life After Retirement

​There is no doubt that modern technology has provided us with a simple solution to make life more exciting after retirement. You can continue working and doing something you enjoy, you can bring in extra cash to supplement your income, and you can eliminate the risk of total boredom setting in. You also get to enjoy the benefit of flexibility, as you can work from your own home and during
hours and days that suit you. This makes it easy to enjoy earning and working even after you retire.
<![CDATA[5 Tools Every Self Employed Worker Needs]]>Fri, 15 Feb 2019 05:21:46 GMThttp://www.retiredbrains.com/blog/5-tools-every-self-employed-worker-needs
​Being your own boss is a liberating and fulfilling experience. When you’re making your own hours and setting your own prices and policies, the benefits are exponential. Being self-employed does mean you’ll require assistance now and again, so we’ve compiled a list of the five tools you need if you’re self-employed.

​1. Time Management Software

You can be the hardest and most talented worker out there, but if you’re constantly missing or late for appointments, you’ll find keeping clients to be a challenge. Being on time shows professional responsibility and maturity, and shows the attendees that you’re serious about the purpose of the meeting.

While there are hundreds of apps for time management on the web, the best one for you will depend on your needs. Are constantly showing up late? You may just need an alarm clock and reminder that you can set to an earlier time.

Are you always forgetting about your engagements? You may need a calendar to help you document those important dates and send reminders before they arrive.

Google Calendar is a simple and free time management application that can be downloaded onto any mobile device or used on a desktop/laptop. It allows fully customizable events and reminders, as well as the ability to invite anyone with a Google account to said events.

This makes tracking the attendees easier than ever while providing a simple and reliable interface to help you keep your appointments.

​2. Invoice Generators and Payment Processing

Receiving payments and sending invoices is arguably the most important part of your business. Your revenue stream keeps you paid and the business running smoothly, so your billing process should be as painless as possible for both you and your customers.

Your invoices should be professional and concise. They should contain your logo, contact information, and details of the sale, as well as your payment and return policies. If you’re not familiar with designing documents, you can try using an online invoice maker instead.

This will allow you to choose and customize templates rather than starting from scratch. The invoices will look clean and professionally created, which in turn makes you look more professional as well.

After you’ve created the perfect invoice, you’ll need to set up a way to send and receive customer payments. Wave offers payment services as well as an online invoice generator so that all of your billing needs are organized in one central location.

Make sure your customers are aware of your invoicing preferences. If you deal strictly with online invoices, keeping the customer aware will ensure there are no surprises during your first transaction.

Likewise, if you’re making the change to online invoices, be sure to let the customer know as
well. Keeping your customers informed increases the likelihood that you’ll be paid on time and generate returning customers.

3. Project Management Tools

​Once you’ve got your time managed and your billing system in place, you’ll want to utilize some tools to help your projects remain on task and organized. It’s easy to get lost in a sea of projects, especially when you’re passionate about what you’re doing.

Project management software makes it easy to organize tasks and delegate to other team members (if any). Sites such as Basecamp provide the user with a central hub where projects can be assigned, and users can be held accountable for their role in those projects.

If you’re unsure what to look or in a productivity app, or which are the best rated, Proofhub has compiled a list of the 36 best project management software and tools for 2019.

Once you’ve taken control of your tasks, you’ll find you’re much more productive and organized, allowing for extra time to start new projects or even take a break. Organizational skills are the key to running any successful business.

4. Cloud Storage

Cloud storage is the best alternative to the traditional filing cabinet or bin storage for important documents. It’s also a great way to send and receive documents, pictures, and other media from anywhere in the world.

Cloud storage is essentially a virtual hard drive. Your account is linked to a predetermined amount of storage space (which is usually free up to a certain amount) from which you can grant permission to other users to view and edit documents.

The best cloud storage is secure, although nothing that’s internet based is ever entirely airtight. Choosing cloud storage can save you money in paper and printing costs while consolidating space and facilitating easy sharing of documents. That’s one advantage which any self-employed worker should consider.

​5. A Website Builder

​Every business should have a stunning website associated with their brand. Your website acts as a central hub for your services and products, and as a catalyst for your customer base to give feedback and request support.

Website building is easier than ever with sites like Wix, which offer free templates and discounted hosting services. With online templates, you can design a professional looking website for much less than the cost of a web developer.

In addition, you can create and update your website from anywhere in the world, meaning real- time improvements and adjustments on the go.

Another Great Addition To Any Self-Employed Worker
While these tools we’ve listed are definitely necessities, one of the most important tools at your disposal is your team. The team you choose to build can have a significant effect on the success or failure of your business.

Be sure to recruit reliable and passionate people, and never be afraid to share a larger vision. A team that helps your company grow will benefit from said growth, as will your business in general. People will always be the most important tool for any business.
<![CDATA[Cavities Aren’t Just for Kids — Taking Care of Your Teeth as You Age]]>Thu, 07 Feb 2019 17:53:40 GMThttp://www.retiredbrains.com/blog/cavities-arent-just-for-kids-taking-care-of-your-teeth-as-you-age​More seniors reach their 70s and 80s with natural teeth intact, something that was unheard of decades ago. As you plan your active retirement, make sure your teeth can stand up to all of the new things on your plate. It’s possible they have a few battle scars, like old fillings, or a bit of wear and tear. Your teeth have served you well, so make sure you give them a little TLC, so they’re in tip-top shape as long as you need them.

​Dental care is even more important as you age

Modern dentistry has better tools and technology than ever before. For example, in the past, many people didn’t have widespread access to fluoridated water, and a higher percentage of people smoked. These factors can raise your risk of tooth decay as you age.

You can’t isolate dental health from your overall well-being. Dentistry doesn’t just treat your mouth; it provides a view of your whole health. Consider your dentist one of several specialists on your medical team who can help keep you healthy. Just as your endocrinologist advises you about diabetes or thyroid disease, your dentist is a mouth specialist.

Dental problems are common as you age, due to side effects from medication, aging fillings, and receding gums. From dry mouth to periodontal disease, these issues become more widespread the older you get. Oral health directly impacts your overall health, so it’s important to address tooth and gum health with the same level of priority as heart or digestive health.

​Bone loss from dentures

Although every effort is made to limit bone loss, once you lose all of your natural teeth, it can be hard to stop the process. Natural teeth and implants stimulate the jawbone to grow with every bite you take. But without the bone-strengthening stimulation of chewing, your jaw bone starts to shrink.
Over time, dentures that once fit well will feel loose. Dentures are custom fit to your jaw when they’re made, so if they feel loose, they need to be adjusted to match the changing shape of your gums and supporting jaw bone.

You can use a denture adhesive for a short term fix, but see your dentist to consult about the bone loss causing your jaw bone to shrink away and remodel. Left untreated, this issue can cause nutritional shortcomings because ill-fitting dentures cause people to avoid hard to chew foods.

Replace missing teeth quickly

If you lost a tooth to time and decay, an implant is the only restoration to permanently replace the function of a natural tooth. Implants replace the root and visible portion of an extracted tooth without damaging the adjacent healthy teeth. The replacement keeps the rest of your teeth from shifting into the space next to them and can be used as an anchor to hold other artificial teeth or partial dentures in place.

Like your natural teeth, dental implants need regular dental checkups, but you can plan on them lasting a lifetime. Careful planning and extensive surgical experience are required for the best outcome, like the local dental surgeons at ED USA.

Screenings for other health issues

Visit the dentist regularly for a full oral exam, even if you wear full dentures and don’t have natural teeth. Your dentist performs a cancer screening with every exam. Your doctor will thoroughly screen your mouth, lips, and neck for signs of cancer. The average age of diagnosis for oral cancer is 62, and the highest risk factor is long-term smoking. If you find an ulcer or rough patch anywhere in your mouth, see your dentist to have it evaluated.

Dentists are often the first medical professional to diagnose conditions like diet deficiencies, eating disorders, diabetes, heart disease, and arthritis. All of these conditions are interrelated with your oral health, so your mouth is frequently the first place to show symptoms. Poor oral hygiene can also contribute to many of the same illnesses and conditions, so it’s critical to see your dentist regularly.


​As you age, conditions like dry mouth, aging dental work, tooth loss, and the wear and tear of years can leave your teeth more susceptible to decay. It’s important to take the best care of your teeth so you’ll have them for years, but also because they impact your overall health. If you need a dental procedure, get it done as soon as possible to deter long-term bone loss. Maintaining healthy teeth is far easier than fixing issues afterward.
<![CDATA[How Surety Bond Claims can Destroy Your Auto Dealership]]>Fri, 01 Feb 2019 21:38:29 GMThttp://www.retiredbrains.com/blog/how-surety-bond-claims-can-destroy-your-auto-dealershipAcross franchise and independent auto dealers, more than 36,000 new and used dealerships exist today. Throughout these businesses, many auto dealers understand the importance of having a surety bond in place as it is a requirement for having an auto dealer license. However, most fail to think about their auto dealer bond until it is too late – that is, when a claim is filed against it. Understanding your auto dealer bonding as well as how claims can derail your business success are crucial to keeping the dealership doors open and customers coming in.

Learning About Your Bond

An auto dealer bond is a necessity for nearly all licensed auto dealers, whether selling new or used vehicles. Auto dealer bonds vary from state to state as far as the type of bond needed, the amount, and the price of the bond, but one thing remains constant. Auto dealers are required to have a bond in place because it provides certain protections for customers. If a dealer fails to abide by its state regulations or laws and customers are harmed in the process, a claim against the bond can and likely will be made.

Understanding how an auto dealer bond works in practice helps professionals in the industry stay ahead of the curve in terms of managing claims and protecting their business. It can be challenging to do so, however, with ever-changing industry regulations, when switching surety agencies, or when an inaccurate claim is made. The best step for auto dealers is to recognize the impact claims may have against them, and how their surety agency can help throughout the process.

The Impact of Claims

As with any business in any industry, there may be customers who file claims that have no merit. In these cases, auto dealers need to work with their surety agency to get to the bottom of the claim and have it dismissed or otherwise handled before it becomes an issue. However, when claims are legitimate, due to an auto dealer’s bad business practices, they have a significant impact on the business.

Auto dealer bond claims not only have a negative impact on your reputation, making it more challenging if not impossible to get new customers, but they also influence the cost of doing business in different ways. First, auto dealer bond claims that are found to be accurate are initially covered by the surety agency – that’s the reason the bond is in place. But dealers must repay the claim amount at some point in the future. This can represent a significant cost to the business.

In addition, auto deal claims that result in a payment to a customer or organization such as the state impact the dealer’s claim history in a negative way. When it comes time to renew your required auto dealer bond, you are likely to pay much more for the price of your bond, even if the amount has not changed. This is because surety agencies are extending a form of credit to you with a new bond, and when that credit is used because of a claim, the cost of your next bond goes up. This additional expense, combined with repayment of previous claims, can derail your financial footing as an auto dealer.

Working with the Right Surety

Auto dealer bonds are required as part of doing business in the industry for a reason, and in most cases, the cost of purchasing a bond for your dealership will not be prohibitive. However, to ensure that cost continues to stay at a manageable level, working with the right surety agency is a must. Be sure to find a surety company that understands the auto dealer business, offers tools and resources to help you manage your surety bond and claims, and provides access to claims specialists that know how to handle claims, legitimate or otherwise, when they come.

Having the right surety agency on your side limits the potential for closing the dealership’s doors due to claims over the long-term, and it keeps the cost of your auto dealer bond affordable each renewal period.

Eric Weisbrot is the Chief Marketing Officer of JW Surety Bonds. With years of experience in the surety industry under several different roles within the company, he is also a contributing author to the surety bond blog.
<![CDATA[5 Creative Ways to Make Money]]>Thu, 31 Jan 2019 08:00:00 GMThttp://www.retiredbrains.com/blog/5-creative-ways-to-make-money
The internet has opened a whole new world for money-making opportunities. These days you don’t only have the option of working a part-time or full-time job in order to make income. Instead, the internet has created all sorts of new options for people to make quick cash.

Keep reading to learn about 5 creative ways you can put more money in your bank account.

1. Use Paribus

Product prices fluctuate on a daily basis, and while you may have waited to purchase an item at the lowest price possible, there’s always a risk that the price may decrease even more after you make a purchase. When this happens, you have two options. You can return the product and repurchase it for the lower price, or you can ask the retailer to refund you the difference between the two prices.
But, keeping track of prices after you’ve purchased something isn’t realistic. It also isn’t a simple process to have the price difference refunded to you. To make the process of price difference refunds even easier, you can use the app Paribus. The app looks at your email receipts and keeps tabs on items that you’ve purchased and their current price.

When a price drop is found, Paribus sends you a real-time alert. The app also starts the refunds process for you so that you can quickly get the money you deserve. If you’re not yet convinced, just read Paribus reviews and learn about the tens of millions of dollars that the app has saved consumers.

​2. Sell Items You Don’t Need

We’re creatures of habit, and over the years, instead of cleaning out closets and getting rid of things we don’t need anymore, we tend to hold onto them. But, this causes clutter. Though it can be hard to get rid of the things we’ve held onto for years, you can make serious money by getting rid of clothes, electronics, and even jewelry you don’t wear anymore.

Selling things you don’t need anymore is one of the quickest ways to make money. You can hold a yard sale in your community or post the items online. As you sell items, not only are you able to make money, you can also free up space in your home. De-cluttering while increasing your income is a true win/win.

​3. Watch Videos

Americans watch millions of videos a day, so chances are you partake in this time-wasting task. But, what if you could make money by doing something as enjoyable as watching videos? In reality, you can! Sign up for Swagbucks and get paid for watching selected videos. The site offers hundreds of videos on various topics such as food, hobbies, sports, parenting, and much more.

What’s great about Swagbucks is that the site also pays you for other easy tasks such as taking surveys and searching. These are all things you already do on a daily basis, so why not get paid for doing them?
With Swagbucks, you earn points that can be redeemed for gift cards and cash. The more points you have, the more money you can cash out.

4. Become a Freelancer

Do you like writing? Do you know a little bit about digital marketing and search engine optimization? If so, becoming a freelancer is a great way to pull in some serious cash. Online there's an endless amount of freelance work. If you dedicate enough time, you can make thousands of dollars a month. This is especially true if you land a big client.

As a freelancer you can find jobs for:
  • Creating blogs
  • Posting updates on social media
  • Proofreading and editing
Freelancing can become more than a side hustle! In fact, there are many people who work as freelancers as their full-time job.

​5. Become a Driver

Your car doesn’t have to be a money-sucker. Instead, you could use it to your advantage by becoming a driver for one of many companies. You can choose between Uber, Lyft, Instacart, GrubHub, Doordash, and many other options. Uber and Lyft are ride-sharing companies while Instacart, GrubHub, and Doordash all put you in control of delivering food to customers.

By becoming a driver, you have total control and flexibility over your schedule. You work when you want and for as long as you want. Obviously the more you work the more you make but, the key to a side hustle is making it work for your schedule.


Thanks to the internet and our ever-connected world, there’s no shortage of ways to make money. From working as a driver to creating online content, if you need to increase your cash flow, you can easily do just that with these simple tips.
<![CDATA[How to Prepare your Budget for a New Pet]]>Wed, 30 Jan 2019 08:00:00 GMThttp://www.retiredbrains.com/blog/how-to-prepare-your-budget-for-a-new-petWhether it's a dog, a cat or something more exotic, it's easy to fall in love with a new four-legged friend. Maybe your child has been asking for a pet for years, and you think they're ready to take on some responsibility. However, before you bring someone new into your family, it's important to make sure that you have the budget to handle looking after them.

Preparing your budget for a new pet isn't as simple as just figuring out how much you're going to have to pay for their food each month. There are other expenses to consider too. Here are some tips to help you.

​Think about the Adoption Fee

Most of the time, it costs to adopt a furry friend into your home. If you're getting your dog or cat from a breeder, then you're likely to pay a much higher price than you would if you looked for a pet at a rescue shelter. That's one of the reasons why it's such a good idea to look for your dream pet at a shelter before you go elsewhere.

Picking a pre-loved pet to bring home with you is a great way to give these animals a second shot at happiness while saving some money. Some shelters will include extras in your adoption fees, such as spaying, neutering, and vaccinations.

​Veterinary Expenses

Speaking of things like spaying and neutering, you should always make room in your budget for vet bills. If you're lucky, many of the major expenses of adopting an animal will be handled for you by the shelter, but if not, you're going to have to put cash aside for everything from micro-chipping to licensing. Additionally, even if your pet has all their shots, they'll need to go to the vet from time to time, just like a human being needs to go to the doctor.

Remember that a visit to the vet can cost thousands of dollars depending on what kind of support your four-legged friend needs. With that in mind, many people find that it's a better idea to get insurance to help them handle bigger expenses.

Pet Insurance

For the most part, pet insurance is an "added extra" on the list of essential expenses that you'll need to address when getting your new furry friend. However, it's worth noting that it's often a lot better to pay twenty dollars a month for insurance than to shell out thousands if your cat suddenly comes down with an illness that needs treatment.

Remember, when you're looking for pet insurance, you should compare your options, just as you would with any investment. You wouldn't get a loan without looking for the cheapest interest rates, so don't get pet insurance without checking out your premium options.


Feeding your pet will be an ongoing expense that you need to think about when you're looking at your budget. Feeding a cat can be a lot cheaper than feeding a dog, but it will depend on the breed that you decide to get. Some specific kinds of cats and dogs require a very specific diet to keep them healthy, so make sure that you take this into account when you're deciding who to adopt.

It might also be worth thinking about treats and other "added" expenses that might go into your food budget too. Treats are particularly important if you plan on training your pet. For puppies in need of behavioral training, they're a must-have.


​The supplies that you need to support your new pet will depend on the kind of animal that you get. Cats need nail clippers, beds, collars, litter boxes, and food bowls, while dogs need leads, leashes, and sometimes a crate too. There's also things like grooming supplies to think about too.

If you have any places in your home that you want to remain "off-limits" to your pets, then you will also need to invest in gates and locks to make sure they can't access that area.


Finally, a complete budget for your new pet also needs some consideration of toys and entertainment options too. Cats are easy to entertain with plenty of random things around your hats, including cardboard boxes and mats. However, it helps to get them a scratching post if you want to save your furniture.

Dogs often need a few more toys than cats to keep them busy when you're away from the house. Make sure that you stock up on things that they can safely bite and chew.
<![CDATA[5 Ways Quitting Alcohol/Drugs Makes You a Better Parent]]>Tue, 29 Jan 2019 08:00:00 GMThttp://www.retiredbrains.com/blog/5-ways-quitting-alcoholdrugs-makes-you-a-better-parentParenting is a precious job that can be demanding. Often, we as parents feel overwhelmed. Alcohol is a
quick and convenient escape away from the steady attention that children need. Drinking can appear as an aid to help us cope. The question does arise about the real truth concerning mixing alcohol or drugs with parenting.

​What Does Your Child Experience?

Children live in a world where they instinctively see their parents in a way that shapes their world. Parents are the go-to for everything. The kids do not see your needs or desires. They need what they need when they need it. Children do not understand the energy you put out when you are working either in the home or workplace.

Everyone has good and bad days, including the kids, but they may not be aware of yours. When parents drink or take mood-altering drugs, all the children experience is you pulling away from them. The kids depend on the parents for security. When they experience your drinking or the effects of the drugs, they sense that you are less available for them. A sober parent may be tired at times, but the children know you are there for them. 

Role Modeling

Being real with the kids is the key to successful role modeling. I am not suggesting parents dump their
adult challenges on them. What I am saying is the kids are watching the parents respond to their issues. This set of parents are laying the groundwork for the next generation. The kids are watching the parents responses by how they solve the problem, the way parents present the solution and the reaction from others to the solution. 

Drinking and drug use can present a false picture of the way the parent would handle an issue if they
were sober. Being under the influence portrays that the way the parents respond does not have to be
consistent, which in turns devalues the issue and the response. Misunderstandings can escalate an
otherwise simple, straightforward resolution. Serious problems may be downplayed when the parent is
not sober. Children are relying on the parent to show them how to handle problems in a consistent

​Positive Consistency

Children need positive constructive consistency in all aspects their lives. They are looking for the parent
to provide a structure that they can depend on. The kids want to know that they are loved and come first in mom and dad's life. Being under the influence can destroy the consistency of everyday family life.

The weekend can be a problem if the parent makes it a habit to binge. Sure, the kids may be in bed on
Friday night when you open that bottle of wine, roll that joint, or start on that six-pack, but it is the
hangover the next day that affects the kids. This is the time they are looking forward to family time
together while the parent is dealing with a hangover and just want to be left alone. A sober parent will
be there for them, ready to work and play together.

Kids Need To Know They Are Not The Problem

Kids and parents will not always agree. There are times that they require structured discipline. It is
necessary for them to learn to make good choices. If they are loved, the discipline will be a bonding tool. When the parent drinks or takes drugs, the child begins to wonder if coming home to them is a problem. The child will begin to doubt their worth to the family or the parent.

By staying sober, this concern will not arise. Even though there may be differences between the children and their parents, the kids will not think that the parents are trying to escape them or not care about them. The child's self-esteem can be damaged.


Alcohol and drugs are expensive. Even if you have a comfortable lifestyle, the time and money spent on drugs and alcohol could be going toward family use. Think of vacations together, college funds, and
home upgrades. Show the family that they are the most important part of your life. Be there for them
every moment of every day.
To learn more about drugs and alcohol addiction, please visit The Recovery Village website.
<![CDATA[5 Steps You Need to Take to Pay Off Debt Effectively]]>Fri, 25 Jan 2019 19:33:09 GMThttp://www.retiredbrains.com/blog/5-steps-you-need-to-take-to-pay-off-debt-effectivelyDebt is no stranger to most people. In fact, almost 82% of millennials are in debt. However, debt
isn't just for the younger generations either. More than 80% of baby boomers are also in debt.
While it’s somewhat comforting to know that you aren’t the only one facing debt, don’t let this
keep you from taking the steps needed to begin digging yourself out of the financial hole.

Keep reading to learn 5 effective steps in paying off debt. In just a few short months, you’ll find
that you’ve made significant progress in paying down your loans and credit cards

1. Prioritize Your Debt

​Chances are you have a variety of debt. Most people have student loans and credit cards along
with a mortgage and a car payment. In order to pay off your debt effectively, it’s important to
have a plan of attack. Start by prioritizing your debt.

There’s no wrong or right way to prioritize debt, but there are two preferred options. The first
method is to pay off highest interest rate debt first. This typically includes credit card payments
and personal loans. By paying off this debt first, less of your money will go towards interest over
the life of the loan.

The second option to prioritize debt is to pay off the smallest debt amount first. If you have a
credit card with a $1,200 balance, you can likely pay it off in a just a few payments. This is a
quick way to have more money to put towards higher debt amounts.

After prioritizing your debt, you can also use tools like a debt payoff planner to help you to
manage when payments on due along with a projected schedule of when a certain loan or credit
card will be paid off. By using a debt payoff planner, you’ll have visual goals to work towards,
making it much easier to stick to your payoff plan.

2. Always Pay on Time

Another critical tip to effective pay off debt is to always pay more than the minimum. Paying just
the minimum amount due won’t get you anywhere if you’re serious about tackling your debt and
wiping it out for good. While you may not be able to afford to pay double the amount due on all
of your debt, even the smallest amount can have a big impact on your debt amounts.

Before determining how much to pay towards each debt, it’s helpful to sit down and make a
budget. Write out all of your monthly sources of income along with bills and debt payments.
With the money you have left over, you’ll want most of it to go towards the highest priority debt.
From there you can put extra money towards other debt payments.

​4. Minimize Spending

To ensure you can pay more than the minimum amount due, it’s important to find ways to
minimize spending so that you’re able to put more money towards your debt and less towards
day-to-day costs. Some effective ways to minimize spending include:
  • Cooking meals at home
  • Using coupons when buying groceries, clothing, etc.
  • Bundling at-home entertainment services
  • Using cash back apps
  • Comparing prices before making a purchase
By minimizing spending, and only purchasing items that you really need, you’ll have more
money left over each month to put towards your debt. Once you have a good handle on your
spending habits, you may even find that you have money available to put into a savings account
or towards an emergency fund.

5. Increase Your Income

Another effective way to pay off your debt quickly is to fund ways to increase your monthly
income. Do you have items in your home that you no longer use? You could hold a yard sale or
sell them on eBay to make cash while also freeing up space in your home!

Do you like to write and know a little bit about marketing? You could apply to become a content
creator or social media marketer for clients.

The key here is to find an activity that doesn’t take up too much time but also allows you to
make a little bit of money. By increasing your cash flow each month, you’ll have more funds to
put towards debt payments.


Paying off debt without a plan of attack isn’t likely to succeed. Use these 5 steps to effective pay
off your debt and to start enjoying financial security and freedom.