Category: EIC Content Email

Email for Week of June 17, 2018

subject line: Giving Back To Your Community

Giving back to your community can be a rewarding and fun experience. It is something you can do individually or together as a family. When it comes to volunteering it can be a bit overwhelming to get started. Before committing to a volunteer position there are a few things to consider:

1. Time Commitment- How much time do you want to spend volunteering? One hour a week, one Saturday a month, a few times a year?

3. What are you passionate about? If you are passionate about the organization or cause you are much more likely to enjoy the time you spend volunteering.

3. What are your strengths? Do you have a specific skill that you would like to utilize when volunteering? It could be working as a volunteer to help with event planning, construction, working with children, helping people with finances, organizing, etc.

4. Once you have narrowed down these questions down, find an organization to volunteer with.

Volunteering can be a great experience, but don’t get discouraged if the first time you try it or the first organization you volunteer with doesn’t work out. If you don’t enjoy it or the time commitment is too much don’t give up just find something that is a better fit for you and your schedule. There are many benefits to volunteering. It helps you get connected in your community, you have the opportunity to give back and it looks great on a resume! It is also a great way to spend time as a family.

Warmly,

XXXXX

 

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Email for Week of June 10, 2018

subject line: How to find the best deals on hotels

Booking a hotel has become increasingly difficult as there are so many options to choose from. After finding a hotel that suits all your needs you need to ascertain whether you are getting a good rate.

1. See what online travel sites like Expedia, Hotels.com, or Travelocity are offering. Or you could browse the hotel website to find a good deal. Many sites list special offers as well as discounts.

2. Pricing travel sites like Hotwire or Priceline do offer good rates for good hotels. The only downside is you cannot specify a hotel. All you can do is indicate where you want accommodation. The reservation needs to be made online and is nonrefundable and one cannot change plans or cancel.

3. If you plan your trip well in advance you could get a discount of 50% or more during the off season.

4. Some hotels have special rates for members of AAA, American Automobile Association and other professional bodies or clubs.

Call the hotel of your choice and ask them if they do offer special rates. Many hotel chains also have rewards programs where you can earn points toward free rooms and get free upgrades.

5. If you are traveling in a group, ask about group rates or family rates. Most hotels have different options for multiple bookings. Some even offer a day or two additional stay at no extra cost.

To get the best deal you need to be thorough as well as flexible. Just as you spend time sourcing air tickets at bargain prices you can do the same for hotel bookings.

Read all travel offers carefully. If you are smart you will save quite a lot.

Warmly,

XXXXX

 

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Email for Week of June 3, 2018

subject line: How to know when it’s time to move up to another home, or stay and improve your current home

In recent years more than ten million plus North Americans buy or sell a home.

Of that ten million number a significant percentage of individuals and families had to first resolve the following questions:

Would we better off financially or in terms of our preferred lifestyle by staying put and making home improvements or should we save ourselves the stress and struggles associated with a ‎home improvement project and buy another home?

First Step:
Determine the current price of your home.

Second Step:
Determine what new features and/or improvements you desire in your present home.

Third Step:
Meet with a real estate professional that can:

A. Help connect you to superior local contractors and/or interior designers.

B. Help you determine which renovations are more consequential regarding ultimate resale value.

C. Provide you with information and previews of current and potentially soon to be marketed properties which will help you determine if the alternative of moving is in your best short range and long range interest.

KNOW YOUR OPTIONS!

Should you:

  • Stay in your home as is until it might be a better time to sell.
  • Stay in your home, improve its value and get to enjoy your personalized upgrades.
  • Consult with recommended architects and/or contractor and look to maximize your profit in your property.
  • Determine the value of your home as is, then calculate the costs of renovation and the projected market value once enhancements are complete.
  • Market your property for sale while you plan your renovation.
  • Consider pricing your home to sell as is as well as pricing it to sell after renovation.
  • Determine which area and type of home is enjoying the greatest current and projected demand and consider the future resale of that property versus your current home.

I am well trained to assist you in discovering the possibility of exchanging your lifestyle, net worth, and tax privileges through the use of a Move Up SystemSM consultation. See my contact information on the front to schedule a quick consultation.

Warmly,

XXXXX

 

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Email for Week of May 27, 2018

subject line: 5 Tips to Keep Your Home Safe

No matter how long you are away, it could be a weekend or for an extended vacation, there are measures you can take to keep your home safe.

#1. Don’t advertise you are away. It is never a good idea to post on social media that you are going on vacation.

#2 Make sure all of your entrances are well-lit.

#3 Trim shrubs near your doors and windows to make it harder for burglars to hide.

#4 When you leave set some of your lights on timers to make it appear that you are home.

#5 Open some of your curtains and blinds so that during the day it gives the impression you are home and at night your lights that are on timers will be more visible.

These tips don’t guarantee your home won’t be broken into but they are great preventative measures.

Warmly,

XXXXX

 

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Email for Week of May 20, 2018

subject line: Tips to Reduce Your Calorie Intake When Eating Out

You may have seen the advice on how to shave calories at restaurants but really, are you wanting to pay high restaurant prices for undressed salads and plain steamed vegetables? If not, how then can you solve the dilemma of too many calories when you eat out?

Here are some tips for getting the calories out of restaurant meals while still ordering your favorites.

1. Order one dinner and ask for an extra plate. Many restaurants will do this for a dollar or two, and it’s well worth it. Then share the meal with your friend and you split the cost straight down the middle. Another option is to order from the so called “appetizer” menu. Two people could order three appetizers, one dessert and split the whole thing and it’s still a ton of food!

2. Skip the pre-meal bread and rolls.

3. Stop ordering drinks.

4. Slow down, you eat too fast! What’s the rush? Take your time, savor the moment, enjoy the flavors.

5. Ask for a to-go box at the beginning of the meal. When the food is served, immediately portion off some to take home for tomorrow.

If you really want to get a handle on your eating habits, look first to where you eat, second at what you eat, and third how much you eat. Where, What and How Much?

Many restaurants now show the calorie content of their food and offer healthy meal options on their menu. For a list of healthier dishes at almost 60,000 different restaurants you can go to HealthyDiningFinder.com or calorieking.com.

Try these steps, choosing one tip at a time and see how easily you can take some of the calories out of restaurant food. Small changes over time can really add up. These small changes can help you still enjoy your meals out without consuming large amounts of calories in the process.

Warmly,

XXXXX

 

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Email for Week of May 13, 2018

subject line: Simple Bathroom Updates

If you want to spruce up your bathroom but you don’t want any remodeling involved, try a few of these simple updates to give your bathroom an updated look and feel.

1. New Hardware- replace your old towel bar, toilet paper holder, hand towel holder, and vanity knobs with new modern ones.

2. New Shower Curtain and Towels- By hanging a new shower curtain, towels and hand towels your bathroom will have a whole new look and feel. Try a pop of color to add some brightness to the room.

3. Paint the Walls- A new coat of paint is one of the best ways to create the biggest change.

4. Hang a New Mirror- Replace your old mirror with one that has a bit of character.

5. Add a Backsplash- A simple backsplash above your vanity will help give your bathroom that custom look.

You don’t have to go through all the work of a remodel in order to make a big difference!

Warmly,

XXXXX

 

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Email for Week of May 6, 2018

subject line: Design Trends For The Home

Ready to give your home an update? Here are some new design trends to keep in mind when making those upgrades.

Wood floors are still here to stay when it comes to home trends, but the shift is in the shade of wood. A darker wood was once more popular, but it seems that a lighter wood is the new trend and in a wider plank around 5 to 7 inches in width.

People are also looking for a simpler trim style and moving away from the crown molding.

While white kitchen cabinets have been very popular the new trend is going toward a more colorful kitchen with darker colors on the cabinets. Darker colors for lower cabinets and lighter upper cabinets are being seen a lot in new kitchen designs as well.

According to some home designers, a few other trends that we will be seeing more of will be bare brick walls and more color throughout the entire home, not just in the kitchen.

Lighting will always be an important feature in the home. Many are leaning toward more unique types of lighting to add more personality and style to the home. Vintage fixtures continue to be a popular option. When it comes to lighting don’t be afraid to mix metals. All the fixtures in your home do not have to match.

Another trend is the use of more natural elements in the home with an emphasis on wood being used throughout. In addition, accessories to make the home feel more cozy such as faux fur throws.

Minimalism is not just for the millennials, many are leaning toward less clutter and decorating with items that have a purpose.

Of course, you don’t want to make decisions simply based on a trend. Your home is your oasis. It should make you feel comfortable and relaxed so choose items and materials that you like and that you will enjoy for years to come.

Keep function in mind as well. While some trends may look nice, they may not be practical for everyone.

Warmly,

XXXXX

 

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Email for Week of April 29, 2018

subject line: How To Make A Smart Donation

Making a charitable donation has many benefits, it helps make a positive impact in the lives of others, you feel good about giving and it can be tax deductible. Here are few steps to help you with your philanthropic endeavors.

1. Determine a cause you care about: What impact do you want to make? Helping animals, veterans, children, international missions, etc.

2. Do your research: Before deciding to give to an organization do some research on where your money goes.

What percentage of their budget is spent on administrative costs?

Charitynavigator.org is a great website full of information on charities and their transparency with their funds. Guidestar.org is another website that provides you with information on charities and has a rating system to help you understand which charities are the most transparent with their funds.

How effective is the organization?

The organization may be supporting a cause you care about but are they actually making a difference? Look at their statistics- depending on the cause it’s not all about the numbers it may be more about their success rate.

Are they tax deductible?

To determine if the organization you would like to give to is tax deductible visit the IRS website. There is a tool on their site called Exempt Organizations Select Check. This is a search tool that enables you to search for an organization and review information about their federal tax status and filings. Here is the direct link to this tool: www.irs.gov/charities-non-profits/exempt-organizations-select-check.

Warmly,

XXXXX

(This article is not intended to provide you with tax advice. Consult with your CPA for any questions regarding your tax deductions and charitable giving).

 

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Email for Week of April 22, 2018

subject line: Are Your Online Behaviors Putting You At Risk?

Many online behaviors put users at risk.

Most of us use the internet as we need to, without a lot of thought about our computer and personal information being “safe” while online, whether it be for work or pleasure.

In fact, a recent survey1 indicated that almost a third of American internet users don’t have, or don’t know if they have; anti-virus, anti-malware, or anti-spyware software on their computer.
This indicates a lot of people take being safe while using the internet for granted. Unfortunately, nothing could be further from the truth. According to the FBI’s most recent information, the FBI is receiving an average of more than 800 calls per day relating to cyber-crime. And in 2016, there were verifiable victim losses due to cyber-crime totaling $1.33 billion.

What About Using A Public WiFi System?

Unless you have up to date anti-virus, anti-malware, or anti-spyware software on your computer, it is not a good idea to use a public WiFi system.

How To Protect Your Computer

Considering the safety issues with using the internet and WiFi systems, it is important you know the necessary steps to take and stay safe while on the internet. According to the FBI, the following safety tips will help protect your computer from intrusion: Keep Your Firewall Turned On: A firewall helps protect your computer from hackers who might try to gain access to crash it, delete information, or even steal passwords or other sensitive information.

Install or Update Your Antivirus Software: Antivirus software is designed to prevent malicious software programs from embedding on your computer. If it detects malicious code, like a virus or a worm, it works to disarm or remove it.

Install or Update Your Antispyware Technology: Spyware is just what it sounds like—software that is surreptitiously installed on your computer to let others peer into your activities on the computer. Some spyware collects information about you without your consent or produces unwanted pop-up ads on your web browser. Some operating systems offer free spyware protection, and inexpensive software is readily available for download on the Internet or at your local computer store. Be wary of ads on the Internet offering downloadable antispyware—in some cases these products may be fake and may actually contain spyware or other malicious code.

Keep Your Operating System Up to Date: Computer operating systems are periodically updated to stay in tune with technology requirements and to fix security holes. Be sure to install the updates to ensure your computer has the latest protection.

Be Careful What You Download: Carelessly: downloading e-mail attachments can circumvent even the most vigilant anti-virus software. Never open an e-mail attachment from someone you don’t know, and be wary of forwarded attachments from people you do know. They may have unwittingly advanced malicious code.

Turn Off Your Computer: With the growth of high-speed Internet connections, many opt to leave their computers on and ready for action. The downside is that being “always on” renders computers more susceptible. Beyond firewall protection, which is designed to fend off unwanted attacks, turning the computer off effectively severs an attacker’s connection—be it spyware or a botnet that employs your computer’s resources to reach out to other unwitting users.

Warmly,

XXXXX

 

1. From Allan Newman Research, a national opinion research firm.

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Email for Week of April 15, 2018

subject line: A New Twist On Camping

For a new twist on the average camping trip why not try renting an old Forest Service cabin or lookout tower? The Forest Service has many cabins and towers available for rent across the United States. These were once used by the Forest Service to spot fires and are now available for the public to rent. For the adventurous spirit these towers and cabins are the perfect fit. Each tower and cabin is unique. So make sure you do your research before booking one. These book quickly, plan in advance and book your stay as soon as you can.

These lookout towers typically have rustic sleeping arrangements such as cots and some form of primitive cooking set up. There is usually no power, water or bedding. Again, this does vary based on the location you choose to rent. These details are listed on the recreation.gov website.

So how do you rent a lookout tower, cabin or other camping spot?

Go to www.recreation.gov. Click on the Find Places and Activities, tab, select Campgrounds and in the search box you can enter the state, city, general area you are looking to go camping in- for example you could search: Look out Towers Montana and a list will populate with options that fit your search criteria.

From there you can review the amenities and fees for each of the options. Most look out towers rent for about $25 to $100 a night. Each area will offer its own unique opportunities for outdoor adventures.

Warmly,

XXXXX

Disclaimer: Travel is personal and each individual’s goals and experiences may differ. This article is merely a recommendation and the author cannot be held responsible for the outcome of your vacation.

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