Autumn 2009

Hang In There – It’s Your Future

As the media continues to predict gloom and doom in the economy, many New Zealanders are looking at how they can’ tighten their belts’ in an effort to cut spending where they can. And it’s quite understandable that insurance, along with other household spending, will come under the
spotlight with some of our clients. But the worsening economy now makes having adequate cover even more important. In fact, that’s why just about everyone takes out cover – to be able to protect their family, health & lifestyle in exactly this sort of economic climate.

In other words, during a recession when nothing is guaranteed, it can be much harder to make headway if something happened to your health
(therefore making it more difficult, if not impossible, for you to earn) than when things are buoyant. Therefore your insurance cover now plays a much more important role than ever. In fact, over the last few months we have experienced a significant number of clients actually increasing cover.

Flexibility’s The Key
Should you have no choice but to seriously consider cost savings, flexibility can be the key to continuing with protection. For example, you can temporarily downscale the amount of protection you have on your Life, Trauma or Income Protection policy resulting in lower premiums.

Alternatively, increasing the excess on a policy can also have savings benefits. Or maybe your family situation has changed with children no longer being dependant.

Cancellations Cost
Taking the drastic action of cancelling your policy will certainly cost you ‘peace of mind’ but could also have significant financial consequences in the future. That’s because nearly all our policies are “’ guaranteed renewable.’ For instance, if you took out a policy 5 years ago and your health was good, the conditions of cover continue each time you renew- even if your medical situation has since changed. But if you cancel now,
only to take up the policy when things get better, you’ll start from scratch again both in terms of premium cost and a medical reassessment. For some that can result in up to a 200% increase.

Your bottom line?
First, consider your current circumstances and if finances allow, increase the amount of protection you currently enjoy to further offset the economic uncertainty. Alternatively, if you have no other choice than to make cost savings, talk to your advisor as to how your current policies
can be fine-tuned temporarily to meet your situation.

And finally, if you are tempted to cancel, think seriously about the severe consequences of doing so, and talk to your advisor before making such a drastic decision.

At Eric James & Associates we’re happy to sit down with you at any time to review your current situation and ensure you continue to enjoy peace of mind regardless of your current financial situation.

FREE PHONE: 0800 ERIC JAMES (0800 374 252) or (03) 977 4400

What Cover Best Suits You?

More Prize Winners Enjoy the Benefits of Protection with Eric James & Associates If you are considering giving you and your family greater protection in these uncertain times or simply reviewing your current situation, the following is a general list of the types of cover available and their benefits.  All the types of cover differ in regard to terms and conditions, lump sums and payment options.

As individual circumstances differ from person to person, your Eric James & Associates’ Advisor can tailor–make a package that is unique to your lifestyle, financial situation and aspirations. Plus provide regular reviews to ensure your cover always remains relevant and cost effective.

Life Cover

This is a lump sum payment in the event of death or a terminal illness. It provides your family with a payment that replaces lost income or repayment of a debt (e.g. mortgage).
Life Income Cover
In the event of death or terminal illness, this type of policy provides your family with a regular monthly payment (to replace the loss of income so they don’t have to worry about their financial future.

Income Protection
A monthly payment if you are unable to work due to a disability as a result of an accident or illness. It allows you to maintain your lifestyle and
continue to plan for your future despite suffering a disability.

Medical Insurance
This provides for the reimbursement of major medical expenses. It allows you to gain immediate access to the best care available at a time when the last thing you want is to end up on a long, hospital waiting list.

Trauma Insurance
If you were to suffer a major event such as a heart attack, cancer or stroke for instance, this lump sum payment will give you the financial freedom to control you own destiny; seek alternative treatment; get the help you need or replace lost income.

Mortgage Replacement Cover
A monthly payment to cover the cost of your mortgage if you are unable to work due to a disability. You’ll have peace of mind knowing your home will remain secure.
Total and Permanent Disablement
This is a lump sum payment if you become totally or permanently disabled. You can use this sum to pay off debt, replace lost income, pay for
rehabilitation or any additional help you might need.

Waiver of Premium
Paying for your insurance will be one less thing you need worry about as this cover pays for your premiums if you are unable to work because of a disability.

Heart disease continues to be the number one killer of New Zealanders.

Here’s some general tips as to how you can help enjoy a healthy heart and active lifestyle.

TOP 10 TIPS FOR A HEALTHY HEART

1. Stop smoking
Quitting smoking is the single most important thing a person can do. If you are a smoker, you are twice as likely to have a heart attack than a non-smoker.

2. Cut down on salt
Too much salt can cause high blood pressure, which increases the risk of developing coronary heart disease.

3. Watch your diet
A healthy diet can help to reduce the risk of developing heart disease, and can also help increase the chances of survival after a heart attack. You should try to have a balanced diet, containing plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables

4. Monitor your alcohol
Too much alcohol can damage the heart muscle, increase blood pressure and also lead to weight gain. Binge drinking will increase your risk of having a heart attack.

5. Get active
The heart is a muscle and it needs exercise to keep fit so that it can pump blood efficiently round your body with each heart beat. You should aim for 30 minutes of moderate intensity exercise a day.

6. Manage your weight
The number of people who are overweight is rising fast. Carrying a lot of extra weight increases the risk of life-threatening conditions such as coronary heart disease and diabetes. Try to become more active.

7. Get your blood pressure and cholesterol levels checked by your GP
The higher your blood pressure, the shorter your life expectancy. People with high blood pressure run a higher risk of having a stroke or a heart attack.

8. Learn to manage your stress levels
If you find things are getting on top of you, you may fail to eat properly, smoke and drink too much and this may increase your risk of a heart attack.

9. Check your family history
If a close relative is at risk of developing coronary heart disease from smoking, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, lack of physical activity,  obesity and diabetes, then you could be at risk too.

10. Make sure you can recognise the early signs of coronary heart disease
Tightness or discomfort in the chest, neck, arm or stomach which comes on when you exert yourself but goes away with rest may be the first sign
of angina, which can lead to a heart attack if left untreated.

The winner of our recent Auckland promotion was “Jamie Kitzen & Justine Kaaka” of Papakura.
And in Christchurch our prize winner was “Jikita de Schot” of Halswell.