The Pros to Medicare Supplemental Insurance Plans

Protection from Astronomical Medical Bills

Health coverage through Medicare only covers 80% of the total costs which leaves you to cover, out of pocket 20%.  In order for Medicare Part B to begin paying it’s 80% you must reach the yearly deductible.  Depending on the Medicare Supplemental Insurance Plan you choose the extra 20% will be partially covered.

Coverage When Visiting Outside the United States

Some Medicare Supplement Plans offer coverage outside of the U.S. in case of an accident or unexpected illness.  If you find that you travel outside of the United State on a regular basis it is important to purchase a Medigap plan that covers your health care needs outside of the country.

During Open-Enrollment – Guaranteed Acceptance

If you apply for Medigap within your open enrollment period (six months after the 1st of the month in which you turn 65) coverage and rates are guaranteed.  This means that it doesn’t matter what illness you bring to the table, Medicare and Medicare Supplemental Plans are guaranteed to accept you for coverage.  This is just one of the reasons it is important to enroll during the open enrollment period.  After this time, insurance companies can deny you coverage or increase your rates, on top of a late enrollment penalty that you will be responsible for.

Renewable Policies

No matter what health problems arise, all standard Medigap plans are assured to be renewable to you.  This means that no matter what you are diagnosed with insurance companies cannot deny you plan coverage as long as you make the premium payments.  Your policy renews automatically each year.

Choice of Medicare Doctors

When you purchase Medicare Supplemental Insurance you will be covered when you visit doctors that participate with Medicare.  The only exception is Medicare SELECT.  This is a type of Medicare Supplemental Insurance that requires use of select medical providers and hospitals within the network.

Multiple Plans to Choose From

Medigap offers 10 different plans to choose from to help Medicare enrollees pay for expenses not covered by Original Medicare costs.  Medigap plans that offer the most coverage also have the highest monthly premiums whereas the opposite is true with lower premium Medigap policies.

Standard Policies

There are ten different Medigap policies.  The plans are standard throughout the U.S. and are regulated by the law.  Plan benefits are the same from state to state meaning that the Medigap Plan F coverage in Michigan is the same as Medigap Plan F coverage in Texas.  In Massachusetts, Minnesota, and Wisconsin standardized plans are a bit different.

The experts at eMedicare Supplemental Insurance, powered by Omega, have all the answers you are looking for when it comes to your Medicare Supplemental Insurance needs.  More information can be found at




Medigap Plans – Two Popular Plans Ending In 2020

Are you enrolled in Medigap?  Do you turn 65 soon and know you will be applying for Medicare and enrolling in a Medigap policy?  If so it is important to note that two of the most popular Medicare Supplemental Plans will no longer be available to enroll in.  Medigap Plans F and Plans C are being discontinued as an enrollment option as of 2020.

Medigap insurance is purchased to cover the medical expenses that are not covered under Original Medicare.  Believe it or not Medicare Insurance doesn’t cover 100% of copayments or deductibles and also has limitations to what it will cover.  Private insurance companies offer Medigap plans, also known as Medicare Supplemental Insurance Plans, were created to fill in these voids.  Currently in 2018 there are 10 different Medigap plans available.  Each of the ten plans offers a different combination of insurance benefits.  This allows participants to decide the combination of benefits that is right for their health needs and budget.

Two Most Popular Plans

Medigap Plans F and Plan C remain the most popular plans offered because they both cover the full deductible of Medicare Part B.  This means that if enrollees participate in Medigap Plan F or C they do not have to pay the Medicare Part B deductible. In fact, Medigap Plan F is the most complete Medigap coverage available to participants including: doctors fees, medical tests, and hospital fees.  Medigap Plan C is very similar to Plan F however does not cover extra fees that doctors charge over what Medicare allows.  These two plans, Medigap Plan F and Medigap Plan C are the most enrolled in plans available, more than 53% of enrollees have coverage under one of these two plans.

Litigation was passed by Congress in 2015 that states in 2020 private Medigap insurers are no longer going to be allowed to offer any Medigap plans that cover the Original Medicare Part B deductible.  Participants that enroll in either Medigap Plans F or C will be allowed to keep their coverage for the rest of their lives, but no new enrollees will be allowed to enroll in either of these plans. Critics believe Medigap Plan F makes it too easy for Medicare enrollees to see a doctor without considering the cost.

The Future Of these Two Plans

For participants that are able to enroll in Medigap Plan F and Plan C before they no longer exist may seem like a no brainer.  While it appears that you would want to lock in the coverage while you still can participants should note that premiums could increase over time as there would be no new enrollees.  This occurs because the participants enrolled in these plans will continue to age without the younger, healthier participants enrolling to offset the expense.  As premiums rise participants enrolled in these Medigap plans may no longer be able to afford to stay enrolled.

Choosing a Medigap plan is crucial as it is difficult to switch once you are enrolled.  During your open enrollment plan, companies cannot consider pre-existing conditions in deny coverage or set the costs of premiums.  After this six-month period which begins on the 1st day of the month you turn 65 because there is not a guarantee that you won’t be charged more based on your health.

While Medigap Plans F and Plans C are being phased out there are still an abundance of Medigap coverage to choose from when picking a plan that will help participants fill in the health care gaps left from Original Medicare.

The experts at eMedigap Plans, powered by Omega, have all the answers you are looking for when it comes to your Medigap Supplemental Insurance needs.  More information can be found at


Common Eyesight Problems That Are Solved with Laser Eye Surgery

Lasik surgery is not the cure all for every eye sight issue. Not every issue that you have with your vision will be solved with the same surgery; just like every ailment with your body can’t be solved by undergoing the same surgical procedure.  In the article below we will educate patients on the most common eye issues that laser eye surgery, LASIK, can possibly remedy.

The three most common problems that patients are bothered by that can be treated with LASIK include: nearsightedness, farsightedness, and blurred vision.  When you meet with your ophthalmologist they will measure your vision.  Vision is measured using units known as diopter.  If you are nearsighted this final number is expressed as a negative number whereas farsightedness is represented with a positive number.

Myopia – Nearsightedness

Many patients that are plagued by nearsightedness can find their vision corrected with LASIK surgery.  LASIK eye surgery provides successful results to most patients suffering from Myopia however, severe cases may be told that laser surgery is not right for them.  A consultation will be done to see where your vision lays on the spectrum to determine if LASIK is an option for you.

Hyperopia – Farsightedness

Although LASIK surgery is available to patients with farsightedness the consultation is a bit more in depth than it is for nearsightedness.  The evaluation of patients goes into greater depths as it is important to determine the degree at which the cornea is flattened.  With a flat cornea the eye is shorter than normal and causes object that are in the distance to focus behind the retina.

Astigmatism – Blurred Vision

Patients with blurred vision in one or both of their eyes most likely have a condition known as astigmatism.  This occurs because of an uneven steepening of the cornea.  Often this ailment can be corrected through LASIK surgery.

As previously stated, the first step in determining if the problem you are experiencing with your eyesight makes you a candidate for LASIK is to schedule a consultation to meet with the surgeon.  Even if laser surgery is not an optimal treatment of your condition it is important for you to understand that you have other options, both surgical and non-surgical.

The professionals at Rohr Eye & Laser Center focus your treatment plan around achieving the best possible results for the candidate.  If LASIK isn’t going to give you the result you are looking to achieve we will explore both surgical and non-surgical solutions that provide you with the vision of your dreams.

Rohr Eye & Laser Center offers the most advanced technology available to suit your lifestyle and visual needs.  As a leader in laser vision correction and cataract surgery, our goal is to help you achieve the best vision possible without glasses or contact lenses.  More information can be found online at

Filters, Purifiers, and Softeners – What’s the Difference?

Water treatment terms are often switched between one another.  Many people, mistakenly, believe that the process between filtration, purification, conditioning, and softening are all one in the same.  With all of the confusion that surrounds the process of bringing quality water to your home and family it is important to have a basic understanding of the difference between each process.

Most homeowners believe, although it is incorrect, that when they are looking for cleaner drinking water, free of lead and chlorine that the installation of a water softener will meet this goal.  Of course, as stated previously, this is not the case at all.  Water softeners are installed in homes as a way of removing minerals in the water.  The minerals that are removed are those that cause your homes water to feel “hard” and create buildup in your plumbing.  To bring cleaner water, that is free of contaminants a water purification system would better suit your goal.

What Are We Trying to Eliminate in Our Water Anyhow?

Before we can truly understand the processes involved with taking the impurities out of our water it is important we understand what we are removing and why. Pure water is simply hydrogen and oxygen, H20; however, water doesn’t occur in this form naturally.  It picks up minerals, impurities, and a number of other chemical compounds as it makes its way to your faucet.

Mineral sediments in our water systems can be both good and bad.  Things like calcium and magnesium are needed whereas like chlorine, pesticides, herbicides, waste, bacteria, and viruses in your homes water supply can be quite harmful.  Impurities in the water are removed using two different kinds of water treatment systems: filters and purifiers.

Along with creating healthy water there are other reasons that people would want to treat the water in their home such as a reduction of in scale build-up which increases the lifespan of your appliances.   Water softeners are the system, once installed prevent minerals from passing through the water supply in your home into your home’s pipes and appliances.

Water Filters

Water filtration systems eliminate and work to decrease chlorine, lead, mercury, magnesium, copper, chromium, nickel, iron, hydrogen sulfide, and more.

Water Purifiers

Water purification systems work to remove bacteria and viruses.  Purification does not mean that the water is free of chemical contaminants that are removed by filters.

Water Softeners

Water softening systems work to replace the “hard” elements in the water with salt or potassium that will not create build-up.

A water treatment option should be chosen only after an analysis of water is done.  Many homeowners find that a combination of treatment systems work best to bring them the quality water they are looking for.

The experts at Reynolds Water Conditioning have a solution to your homes unique water quality needs including: arsenic, bacteria, chlorine, rotten egg smell, fluoride, hard water, iron, lead, acid, tannins, radon, and more.  More information on our water treatment solutions including water softeners and conditioners, water filtration and purification, reverse osmosis drinking water, and iron & odor removal can be found online at

Winter is Right Around the Corner

When it comes to closing your plaster pool for the winter there are three goals for most homeowners:

  • Preserve the quality of pool water
  • Secure all pool equipment
  • Protect the pools plaster surface

Water freezes, it’s pretty simple.  When the temperature dips below 32 degrees Fahrenheit the water in your pool will begin to freeze.  When the water freezes it will expand.  Water that is allowed to freeze and expand without any special treatment given to it can cause homeowners a lot of grief in the from of busted plumbing, plaster cracks, and more.  The best way to prevent these issues is to follow a precise closing method when the season ends that includes draining the excess water from the pools plumbing.

When winterizing your plaster swimming pool one key element that must be taken into consideration is the need for chemically balanced water.  If the water is not balanced when you close your pool for the season there are a few issues that could arise including: build up and corrosion.  If water issues exist when you close the pool they will still be there when the pool is opened next spring which can make the opening process more difficult.  Stagnant pool water often “attracts” the growth of algae.  Chemicals also help to eliminate issues with pool staining from dissolving metals that are not being filtered.

Before the pool is closed down for the winter is crucial that homeowners not only take time to balance the chemicals in the pools water and include additives to prevent algae growth and staining.  Not only is balanced water important but also clean water.  The pool should be thoroughly cleaned and free of leaves, dirt, outside debris.  Any outside material left within the pools water has the ability to leave unsightly markings on the pools plaster surface.

Another step that is super important when closing your pool is the water level.  The pools water level should be lowered below the skimmer and all plumbing, drains, and pool equipment should be drained.  Once the pipes are drained it is important to use drain plugs to prevent the water from seeping back into the plumbing.  DO NOT completely drain the water in your pool.  This is especially true when it comes to plaster pools.  Water needs to be kept in the pool to avoid under ground water from putting pressure on the plaster which would cause it to crack.  Although having a pool re-plastered is common, it is not practical every year and is not financially cost effective to have done on a regular basis.

Pound Pool Plastering offers several options when it comes to servicing your pool including plaster, caulk, tiling, cement decks, plumbing, and coping in both commercial and residential settings.  More information can be found at

Is It Time to Replace the Windows in Your Home?

Our homes can’t tell us when something is wrong or not working in the manner that we need it to.  It does however give us a number of signs when something isn’t running exactly as it should be.  This is especially true when it comes to our home’s windows.  The windows on our home can last upwards of 20+ years when high-quality windows are purchased are well-maintained.  It is important that homeowners pay attention to their homes and know what to look for when it comes to replacing the windows of their homes.

Are the windows damaged, warped, or broken?

Sometimes windows need to be repaired instead of replaced.  Minor problems like replacing broken hardware, adding new weather-stripping, or fresh caulking are some of the simpler repairs that can be done on windows. Replacing a window that has a broken sash, has become damaged, or warped may be the better option.  The window may still be in “working” order but really need to be replaced.  Windows that have a draft, fog up, stick, or won’t stay open are telling you they need to be replaced.

Are you ready to lower your energy bills?

Properly installed windows lower your monthly utility bills year-round.  Drafty windows can increase your energy bills upwards of twenty five percent.  Replacing the windows in the home with more energy-efficient windows can reduce your heating and cooling bills.  It can also be a huge selling point down the road when you are considering putting your house up for sale.

Can your home’s curb appeal use an update?

The windows and doors of your homes are one of its most noticeable characteristics.  If they appear old and damaged the overall look and feel of your home will seem outdated.  Look at the color on the window frames and screens, are they faded, do the screens have holes in them? Curb appeal is everything when it comes to your home and your homes windows are a huge part of the overall look of your home.

The type of windows that you choose can also change the total appeal of your home.  Some homeowners choose to go from fixed sash windows to new ones that open.  Another option is to increase the size of the windows to increase the amount of natural light that comes into the home.  Daylight increases the productivity, adds coziness, and creates a warmth within your home.

As a full-service home improvement contractor servicing all Southeast Michigan, Kearns Brothers, Inc. offers clients a wide range of services to meet their construction needs including: roofing, siding, window, masonry, chimneys, gutters, and insulation services.  More information can be found at

Design Choices With iFenceUSA Aluminum Fencing

A four-foot-tall aluminum fence in white, adorned with circles offers a contemporary design to enhance the clean look and feel homeowners are looking for in a backyard oasis.  A six-foot-tall, classic black aluminum fence with an added dual driveway gate offers sophistication and style to regal, two story colonials in brick.  Aluminum fencing offers several unique design options which offer homeowners a way to individualize their unique story.

Aluminum Fence Height:

  • The height of your home’s aluminum fence is one of the more critical choices you will make when selecting your new fence.  The height of your homes fence will depend on the job that it needs to perform.  Aluminum fencing used around the perimeter of a pool must be four feet or higher other than that the only other regulations you need to consider is those in place by your HOA and local municipalities.

If a fence is only for aesthetics you can literally choose any height that is offered for sale, from three feet to twelve feet.  Are you using the fence to keep children or pets inside the yard?  Is the fence being added for additional safety, to prevent unwanted visitors?  Maybe the fence is purely for aesthetics.  Whatever the reason, iFenceUSA has a fence that meets your height requirements.

Resort, Residential, Commercial, or Industrial Grade:

  • Another choice that homeowners need to make is when selecting the grade (thickness of aluminum) of fencing. It may seem obvious that homeowners would choose residential grade aluminum fence however that is not always the case.  The grade of fencing not only determines the strength and thickness of the aluminum that is used in your fence but also the size of the individual pickets, and then length of the aluminum fencing panels.


  • iFenceUSA offers eighteen unique options of aluminum fencing to choose from including popular options The San Marino, a flat top aluminum fence style and The Bella Vista, a simple and elegant spear top style. There are three major options when it comes to aluminum fence styles: flat top, exposed spears & finials, and flat top with spears.

Flat Top:

The most popular style in aluminum fencing which covers the pickets so that there is nothing left above the top flat railing.

Spears & Finials:

This style offers a more decorative option for aluminum fence.  The pickets are spruced up with a variety of ornamental styles of finials, spears, butterfly scrolls, and circles.

Flat Tops with Spears & Finials:

Aluminum fencing that offers homeowners a combination of elegance with ornamental option with a subdued flat railing.


  • One of the last but important decisions homeowners will make has to do with the color of their new fence. Black aluminum fence panels, both matte and glossy, are the most popular option for homeowners.    iFenceUSA offers nine color choices when picking out your new fence including: Matte bronze, Bronze, White, Matte White, Green, Beige, Matte Sandstone, Black, and Matte Black.  When choosing a color for your fence consider the color and style of your home, choose a color that will compliment your home and matches its style.


iFenceUSA is an online distributor of wholesale aluminum fences and gates for residential, resort, commercial, and industrial installation.  As an industry leader in maintenance-free aluminum fencing products we have all your aluminum fence and gate needs covered.  More information can be found online at 

What Should You Know About Aging in Place?

Financially, It’s Worth Tweaking

The average cost in the United States to live in an assisted living community is upwards of around thirty-six hundred dollars a month, that is roughly forty-two thousand dollars a year.  Age in place modifications for the average single-story home on the other hand are roughly between ten and fifteen thousand dollars.  That is one heck of a cost savings over the course of seven to ten years.  If simple age in place modifications can keep you at home even one year longer than you anticipated the amount you save is astronomical.

Don’t Over Complicate

Even the smallest updates can make a huge difference in how you co-exist with your home.  Start with something as little as replacing the hardware on doorknobs, cabinets, and more.  In bathrooms it is important to install sturdy grab bars, replace dual faucets with single-handled faucets, upgrade the toilet to a comfort height style, and increase the amount of lighting.  Kitchens are much like bathrooms with the addition of roll-out shelving and undercabinet lighting.

Renovate for Accessibility

Accessibility modifications are costlier than the previously mentioned simpler updates in hardware and lighting but can add more independent living years for you.   Consider installing a handicap ramp to entry ways with steps.  Depending on the length and incline needed a wheelchair ramp can be installed for under three thousand dollars.  Another common accessibility renovation that is recommended is the installation of a lip free shower.  If you choose custom-tiles, upgraded materials, fixtures, and fixings a custom, curb-free shower can run a family up to fifteen thousand dollars whereas simple, modular options run around three thousand dollars installed.

Think Bigger

Sometimes structural changes to the home are needed.  Some of these options can include widening doorways, creating a more open floor plan by eliminating walls, and event he addition of elevators in some cases.  If you are doing a major renovation to the home that is the time to think about the longevity of your life in the home.  It is less expense to do large structural changes while doing major renovations within your home.

Considering Using the Equity in Your Home

With the equity that has built up in your home over time there are multiple ways to pay for age in place modifications:

  • Cash-Out Refinance of Your Mortgage
  • A Home Equity Loan
  • Line of Credit
  • Reverse Mortgage

Glen Miller the Home Doctor is a licensed general contractor servicing Livingston County and the surrounding areas.  Glen offers a wide range of services including home maintenance plans, age in place remodeling, kitchen and bathroom remodeling, finished basements, and hardwood floor refinishing.  More information can be found online at



What Can You Expect from Your Bankruptcy Attorney?

One of the ways that people get out from under an oppressive debt is through filing for chapter 7 or chapter 13 bankruptcy.  Having debt discharged through bankruptcy can offer many people a great sense of relief.  The process itself however can be quite daunting without hiring a proper bankruptcy lawyer helping your through the process and forms.  When you are seeking an attorney’s assistance with the bankruptcy it is important to find one that offers you: competence, sound legal advice, preparedness, and representation.


Bankruptcy cases can range from straightforward to utterly complex.  The attorney you hire to handle your bankruptcy should have the skills that you need to have your bankruptcy proceed properly.  Your bankruptcy’s difficulty will range depending on a number of elements including:

  • The facts of your particular situation
  • The chapter of bankruptcy you are filing: chapter 7 or 13
  • The assets that will need to be sold
  • The status of employment and business ownership
  • The involvement of interested parties

Sound Legal Advice

Once you have established a relationship with a bankruptcy attorney a contract will be signed to specific the working agreement between you and your lawyer. This agreement will state what services you should expect that they will provide vs what you are to provide for yourself.  The first thing that your attorney will discuss with you is whether it is in your best interest to file for chapter 7, chapter 13, or another option.  This decision is based on what makes the most sense for you to achieve your financial goals. Your attorney should also brief you on what you can expect throughout the bankruptcy process along with the difficulties of your unique case.


Your attorney is in charge of making sure all of the paperwork that you need is filed and properly and within the timeline provided for your case.  You are required to disclose proper financial information to your attorney including: income, expenses, assets, and information pertaining to your debt.  Once this information has been received it will be processed and the two of you will review the information before it is filed.

You may be asked for more information by the court or the court’s trustee.  If you or your attorney fail to provide this information in a timely manner and you miss the deadline the following consequences may occur:

  • Delay in your bankruptcy proceedings
  • Dismissal of your case

Because of the serious nature of the consequences it is critical that the bankruptcy attorney you hire is diligent with paperwork and following required deadlines.


After the paperwork has been filed and the court has received everything it needs all debtors will be required to attend a hearing known as a 341 meeting of the creditors.  Depending on your case you or the bankruptcy attorney representing you may need to go to other hearings as well.  Your attorney will advise you when you meet with them on what type of hearings you will be required to attend.  Your bankruptcy lawyer should attend all hearings with you.  Some of these can include:

  • Chapter 13 bankruptcy confirmation hearing
  • Chapter 7 bankruptcy reaffirmation hearing
  • Motion/objection hearings


Bohikian Law Group specializes in bankruptcy services including chapter 7 and 13 bankruptcy.  More information can be found at


Just How Important is a Contact Page to a Website Afterall?

It’s obvious that your sites HOME page is the most important page of your web site design.  It is the landing page and will receive the most traffic of any of the pages within your website.  The second most important page, is often the most neglected when optimizing your site, can you guess what page we are talking about?  If you guessed the CONTACT page you are correct!  Consider the goal of most of the pages on your website are created for the sole purpose of getting clients to reach out to you in one way or another.  Yet the CONTACT page is most often the most underwhelming page on your website.

Considering that most CONTACT pages have very little information on them other than a basic fill information form, an email address, phone number, and perhaps a physical building address.  Face it, that information can be a bit unenticing for website visitors.  Since the goal of the page is to reach out and touch base with you, it is important that this page persuades them to do so.

Basic Contact Page Rules

Provide More Than One Method of Contact:

  • We have heard it over and over again that people hate being directed to fill out a standard, one-size fits all form on websites. We also get many businesses that don’t want to list their phone number because they don’t want to spend the day fielding phone calls.  It is crucial to the success of any company that they don’t focus too much on what they want but instead focus on the customer, CONTACT pages are made for your customers not you.  It doesn’t matter if you don’t want the phone number listed, if a customer prefers to call you then it is important they are able to easily do so.  Give your customers every option possible on your websites CONTACT page: include an easy fill form, an email, a phone number, a physical address, and any other method of contact that you know your customers desire.

Invite Customers to Contact You:

  • Even if the CONTACT page seems self-explanatory it is important to note that for visitors to your site its not that simple. Your site must include a message that is welcoming and invites visitors to contact you with whatever method they are comfortable in doing so.  I hear it all the time, “Just go ahead and slap up a contact form, people will know what to do.”  Even though we can assume that visitors will see information to contact you, it is important to make them feel as if you are really waiting for them to reach out.  Otherwise visitors may see the form as an abyss,
    • We are happy you found us and look forward to hearing from you!”
    • “We are here to help, get in touch with us today and a representative will get back to you as soon as possible.”
    • “We value your questions and input, please reach out to us today.”

It doesn’t have to be anything fancy or elaborate, just a welcoming message that lets visitors know their information will be followed up on.

Use Something Other Than “SUBMIT”:

  • More than one study has been done that shows website traffic is more likely to send information if the text button says something other than “submit”. Be more specific and illicit action: “Let’s Get Started Today”, “Send Your Message”, “Get in Touch with Us Today”, or any other way to get the message across.
Don’t Forget to Say Thanks:
  • A thank you page after visitors share their contact information with you is important for more than one reason. It not only allows you to keep track of conversions within Google Ads, it can also increase traffic to other pages on your site.  A well optimized thank you page should offer visitors suggestions on other areas of the site to interact with while they are waiting to hear from you.

As the second most visited page to most websites, the contact page is an important aspect to remember when optimizing your company’s website.  With proper optimization to this single page you can increase contacts and isn’t that the reason we have websites to begin with, more contacts equal greater business opportunities.

Creative Programs and Systems, CPS, is an all-inclusive IT solutions company offering a variety of services including: managed IT services, IT consulting, residential computer services, custom programming, website design, iphone & android app development, and more.  More information can be found at