How to get sponsors for your vehicle

How to get sponsors for your vehicle

What does it take to get a sponsor for your custom vehicle project?

Everybody always asks me, “how did you get so many sponsors?” The short answer is, “because I asked”. I know this is an overly simplified answer, but it really is the main key to getting sponsorships. The second key to being successful when soliciting potential sponsors is having something worth sponsoring that is interesting and unique. It sounds easy, but it’s not as simple as it sounds. I got the idea for soliciting sponsors from truck I saw in Four Wheeler many years ago called “Project MPG”. It was a nondescript, white Ford F-350 dually which had been customized under the hood to produce the maximum miles per gallon possible. Their project truck had about eight or nine companies sponsoring it. When I first began my Custom Ford project, I contacted the owner of Project MPG for some advice. He very quickly gave me the brush off and being unhelpful was an understatement. So I took the initiative, based on my experience in marketing and business in general, and started making ‘sales’ calls to companies that manufactured the products I needed for my project.

I knew that there would a lot of folks out there with a desire to build a custom four wheel drive truck and hope that they could get corporate sponsorship to lessen the financial burden. So before I even started disassembling the truck, the first order of business was to build a website about the project so that potential sponsors would be able see that I’m not just another “Joe Schmoe” trying to get some free parts. Once the website was created and online, I had a powerful sales tool with which I could contact the companies for which I was seeking products. I never asked for money, and conversely, never received any either. What I did receive was significant support financially through companies providing products and services for my project in exchange for the advertising and marketing opportunities my project provided. This was a win/win program for both of us. I won because I was able to secure products for ‘free’ or at cost. The sponsor won because they got to have their product associated with a potentially high profile marketing vehicle (pun intended).

The next step was determining who to contact at the various companies when the need arose. Finding the right person with whom to speak in a large company can sometimes be quite challenging. When dealing with smaller companies, it is usually much simpler, but not always. Once you find the right person, the next step is introducing yourself in such a way as to not come across as “wanting something”. It is much better to explain why you are calling, what you need and ask if they offer any kind of sponsorship opportunities. This set’s the stage for your conversation. The person on the other end now knows who you are, what you want and that you’re not trying to get something free right out of the gate. This greatly helps your chances of success. Now you have room to discuss and negotiate with them. Always be honest, but you don’t have to show all of your cards up front. Let them speak. They will usually give you a lot of good information about their company and about how they operate. Makes sure you let them know that you’re flexible and that even a partial sponsorship such as offering the product at cost or a significantly reduced rate would work as well.

Once you’ve set the tone, you need to let them know, somehow, about your website. Many times, they are curious and will pull up your site while you’re on the phone. Use this to your advantage. They can now see that your project is real and not just some pie in the sky pipe dream. Let them know how their “donation” will benefit them. Answer these questions for them: How will my company benefit? How visible will the vehicle be? (translation: how many shows will the vehicle attend and where). How visible will my company be? (translation: how will people know my company sponsored you?) If you can answer these questions effectively, you have a very good shot at receiving a “Yes”. If you can’t answer these questions effectively, then you have no business even picking up the phone. All you’re doing is wasting their time and yours.

Once you get the much sought after “Yes”, the next step is to show you’re sincere. Get their name up on your website under the list of sponsors. Make sure that everyone knows that Acme Corp. supplied the XYZ brand muffler bearings for your custom creation. Lastly, when the vehicle is done, get it out in front of the public. If you stay true to your word, you’ll have a much better shot at the next company as your project progresses. Good luck and be sure to let me know how your sponsorship quest pans out.

© 2007 Project Responder

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Handy Ways To Help You Save Big On Auto Insurance

Automobile insurance can be a complex and frustrating maze to wander through with no particular direction and no path out. Since you really cannot test the product first, you need to go into the process of selecting auto insurance armed with solid and reliable knowledge. Please read on for some very valuable advice on automobile insurance, from people who have tried and tested the business and know how to best operate in it!

To file an insurance claim correctly, you must be aware of your company’s rules. Contacting your agent as soon as possible should always be your first step as this will set the machinery into motion. Your agent will be the one coordinating the details such as scheduling any appraisers to evaluate the damage and put you on the road to getting the repairs made.

If you are a senior citizen and you own your car but don’t drive very much anymore, then you may be able to save on automobile insurance. Consider insuring only the main driver of your vehicle. If this person has a good driving record then you can get a much lower rate.

As long as your auto insurance is in accordance with state law, you should not have to purchase a more comprehensive package. This is a great way to save money. If you are a safe driver in a relatively safe area, you can drop certain features like collision coverage and end up saving a bundle of money.

If you’re currently covered by a car insurance policy and happen to see the same policy for a better price, do not jump at the offer right away. A lot of drivers will instantly switch sides when they see the dollar signs, but they never bother to read the fine print. Companies lure you in with the promise of low payments, but leave you lacking in coverage, so always be weary of this fact.

Never drive your car without liability insurance. This insurance type can save you a lot of money as the insurance company pays the damages you caused to someone. Without this insurance type, you would be liable for all the costs. Choose the coverage that is right for you and your unique situation.

The best tip your can get to reduce your car insurance is to keep your driving record clean. Nothing increases your premiums like getting into an accident. Always drive within your own capacity and stay away from dangerous conditions. For example, if you don’t see well in the dark, then don’t drive at night.

Take a close look at your auto policy and take off any “extras” that you won’t use. For example, you might have emergency roadside assistance included in your plan. If you don’t think you are going to use this, drop it in order to decrease the amount you are spending on your insurance. Your agent can help you figure out what else might apply.

One tip to lower your auto insurance costs is to keep a good FICO score. Auto insurance companies are starting to look at your score and you will want to have a good one so you can save some extra money. If your score is on the low side work on it to make it higher.

One of the absolute greatest factors in the price of your auto insurance remains, unfortunately, completely outside of your control, this is your age. The majority of companies consider people under 25 to be a higher risk and due to this you will end up paying more. Remember, especially when you are younger, to check constantly with your agency for discounts based on age year by year.

When looking into auto insurance, you need to think about how much insurance you will need. Each state has a minimum amount of coverage each driver needs to maintain, so be sure to use that as a starting point. If your car is worth more, then you need more insurance. Similarly, if your car is a beater, chances are your insurance costs will be significantly lower.

Check your auto insurance policy annually for any errors. It is important that you review the make and model of your car and yearly mileage estimate and update any incorrect information. Also, make sure that you are receiving any applicable discounts for safety equipment, such as automatic seat belts and car alarms.

One of the things that you can do in order to get cheaper auto insurance rates is to increase your voluntary excess. This extra is the amount of money that you will compensate in the event of a claim. By increasing this your insurance provider will then decrease your monthly premium.

Some might say insurance is becoming like death and taxes, simply one of life’s unavoidable unpleasant experiences that we don’t have much control over. Hopefully, this article has shown you otherwise and has armed you with beneficial tips and tricks you can apply easily to bring down the cost and aggravation of your automobile insurance today!

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Types of car insurance scams and ways to avoid them

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Closet Problems & Solutions

Closet Problems & Solutions

A messy closet is a problem a lot of people have and they aren’t sure how to fix it. The messiness can come in many different forms but the root cause is most likely a lack of organization. If you start out organized it is much easier to stay that way. Here are a few common closet problems and some solutions that can be implemented at any time.

Are your hangers a tangled mess or do your clothes constantly slip off? Sounds like you have wire hangers hanging in your closet. To prevent tops from slipping off and falling to the floor or the dreaded hanger crease in the middle of your pant leg, invest in some wooden or plastic hangers. Not only are they functional, it is more attractive to have a uniform type of hanger in your closet (all wire hangers do not count).

If you are consistently looking for a mate to the pair of shoes you want to wear you need to put a system in place to organize your shoes. There are many options for shoe organizing, you can purchase a hanging canvas shoe rack that goes on your hanging bar, a shoe tree, or install some shelving in the bottom part of your closet. This is a quick and easy job, something that can be accomplished in under 2 hours (set-up and organization).

Chances are there are many things you can remove from the closet that doesn’t belong. Put your spare blankets in a linen closet or under the bed, and take the clothes you have been meeting to drop off at the donation bin out to the car so you won’t forget to do it another day. Find the proper home for whatever else is living in your closet when it shouldn’t be.

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Auto Insurance Information You Can’t Afford To Miss

Auto insurance is an essential part of financial planning, but understanding it and choosing the right policy can be tricky. There are so many different kinds to sort through, and then choose. Here are some tips to help you get the right auto policy for you:

When considering auto insurance for a young driver, keep in mind the type of car in relation to the type of insurance you are buying. If the car itself is not worth that much money, pay special attention to the extras on the claim, as well as the deductible amount. Most providers will work with you, based on your choices.

Having car insurance is a necessary and important thing. However there are things that you can do to help keep your costs down so that you have the best deal while still being safe. Check out different insurance companies to compare their rates. Reading the fine print in your policy will help you to keep track of whether or not terms have changed or if something in your situation has changed.

One great and underrated way to save on your monthly auto insurance premiums is to join an automobile club. Especially if you are driving a classic or rare vehicle, joining an auto club will allow you to join with a group discounted rate, ultimately saving you hundreds of dollars annually on your insurance premiums.

If you have a good credit score, there is a good chance that your automobile insurance premium will be cheaper. Insurance companies are beginning to use your credit report as a part for calculating your insurance premium. If you maintain a good credit report, you will not have to worry about the increase in price.

Your teenage driver may be eligible for a number of discounts that could make auto insurance more affordable, so be sure to ask. Some companies will give a discount to good students with a GPA above 3.0. Your teen’s premiums may also gradually decrease as they accumulate a safe driving record. Defensive driving courses and a car with plenty of safety features can also get you a cheaper policy.

If you are just buying a car for jetting around town, see if your insurance company offers discounts for low mileage driving. The less you drive, the less likely you are to have an accident that your insurance will have to pay for. Most companies recognize this with discount offers.

Although it may seem strange, try to purchase an older vehicle when looking for a new car. This is because the insurance rates on older vehicles are not nearly as high as on newer ones. If you already have insurance and you switch to an older vehicle, make sure to let the insurance company know.

If you want to save even more money, check into getting all your insurance needs through the same company. Most insurance companies will offer a discount on their insurance if you have more than one policy with them, such as your homeowner’s insurance or renters’ insurance. This can reduce your rates.

When looking into auto insurance, the best advice you could probably receive is to check different companies and get competitive quotes. You will then know you are getting the insurance coverage you need, at a price you can afford. Check the policies side by side to be sure the one you choose has everything you need.

Consider population when you are buying auto insurance. The population where your car is insured will greatly impact your rate for the positive or negative. Places with a larger population, like big cities, will have a much higher insurance rate than suburban areas. Rural areas tend to pay the least.

Whenever possible, avoid filing and submitting minor claims to your vehicle insurance provider. Unfortunately, increased reliance upon insurance services directly translates to significant increases in monthly rates. Consider filing claims only if you are unable to cover the cost of repairs, and if failure to have repairs creates an unsafe driving condition.

A great tip for getting affordable auto insurance is to consider dropping your coverage if your car is only worth a couple of thousand dollars. Since coverage pays for damage to your vehicle, you would only need to have a couple of thousand dollars to replace the car. Therefore, there is no need in having high coverage in this instance.

Don’t forget to inquire about special discounts when you are purchasing an auto insurance policy. Discounts are usually based on risk, and if you are a lesser risk to the insurer, they may lower your premium. Discounts may be given if you’ve had a good driving record, have an anti-theft device installed in your vehicle, or if you’ve taken courses on safe driving. Check with your agent to see if you qualify for any of these, or any other discount that might be available.

As stated above, auto insurance is incredibly important to your current and future financial planning. It is also important to understand the different kinds to choose the best policy for your personal needs. Following the above tips, is a very good place to start.

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Should You Buy a Car Through a Car Club?

Should You Buy a Car Through a Car Club?

People are always looking for ways to save money and this quest to save money extends even to classic and collectible cars. This makes it seem completely plausible that looking at a good car club to find a great deal on a car. Many car clubs have places where members are able to advertise their cars that they are offering for sale. This can allow you to quickly and easily skim over the ads and see what is available.

One of the biggest benefits from buying from a car club like this is if you are already a member you have probably already seen the car extensively and have a very good idea about the overall condition of the vehicle rather than taking a chance on what is under the hood. Many people purchase a car on the hope and prayers that there is nothing wrong with it. By buying a car, that you are already familiar with you can avoid many of the hassles that car shopping brings with it.

Additionally, buying a car from a car club can allow you to pick out something at a great deal. Many car club members simply what the money back that they have invested into the vehicle. This can allow you to pick up a vehicle at a great deal and allows the previous owner to get money so they can move onto the next car project they have been planning. This can really allow you to find some really fabulous deals without having to do huge amounts of haggling.

Buying a car from a car club is another good way to ensure that you helping to support the club as well. Many clubs ask that a small donation of the sale price be given so that it can benefit whichever charity the group is associated with. This can allow you to even donate money to a charity inadvertently. It is important to realize that not all car clubs have this requirement. Some only charge a small fee for the seller to advertise, some charge nothing at all. Each club has their own rules in regard to this and determining how the club operates in terms of sales is going to require asking the president or other club member’s questions.

As you can imagine those who are looking for a great deal are likely to be very happy with the great deals that are possible from the car clubs. Finding that great deal on a perfect car really is possible. Yet it is very important to remember it is still ultimately about making a profit. You still need to do your homework to determine how much the vehicle is worth. If for some reason, you are looking to purchase a kit car or restored classic you may need to take additional time to determine the true value.

Realize that not all appraisals for vehicles will take into account exactly what the vehicle offers. This includes components such as turbo chargers, custom bumpers and even newer engines. These are components that would require a special appraisal to really determine the true value of the vehicle. If you are willing to put a bit of work into the process it is still possible to find that great deal, but still come to the situation knowledgeable.

If you are quite uncertain, what type of car you are interested in buying you should check out some of the car shows. Many times these shows that are sponsored by car clubs will have several cars with for sale signs. This can allow you to really look around and see everything that is available and make a wise decision. Of course, not all cars at a show are going to be for sale, and not even all of the shows are going to have any vehicles for sale but if nothing else this gives you a great opportunity to learn how the vehicles should look and give you a bit of detailed information on determining the value.

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All The Help You Need To Get An Amazing Car You Can Afford

The process of purchasing a car is something that strikes fear in the hearts of many. The fact is, however, that by spending the necessary time to research the process ahead of time, car buying does not have to be so daunting. Read the article that follows, and you should have the information you need to make the best choice for you and your family.

Always ask the seller if they are willing to let you do a test drive. While some private sellers may not offer you the chance to do a test drive, there are many that will. You should try to do your deal with someone who will allow you to see how the car runs.

Do not let the car dealer talk you into buying a car that is not within your budget. Many people are smooth-talked into buying sports cars because the salesman says they would look good in it. Remember that salespeople are motivated by the commissions they will make if they sell you an expensive vehicle.

Before you set foot into a dealership, do some research online. Check nearby dealership’s websites and record their listed price on the vehicle you want, as well as any special deals they might be offering. Having this information at your disposal will be a valuable asset when it comes time to negotiate with a salesman.

Do not allow anyone to intimidate you into making a purchase that may not be the right one for you. Do not fall for lines like “This will be gone if you try to buy it later.” These types of statements are usually made to sway you into make a purchase right away.

Do not be turned off from a car because it is used. Most people would like nothing more than to buy a brand new, shiny car. But, is this really feasible for your financial situation? Many used cars are perfectly fine and will not break your back nearly as much as a new car will.

Have a budget in mind before you go car shopping. This involves assessing your monthly income and bills, and having a clear understanding of how much you can really afford to add to those. Doing this will help you to stay in budget when you make your new car purchase.

Shopping towards the end of the month is wise. Everyone has a quota to meet each month. With only a few days left in the month, your salesperson might be one sale short of meeting his or her monthly quota. When this happens, you are more likely to get a good deal.

When shopping for a car, you should take along a friend that has no interest in you purchasing a car. You can steer clear of problems this way. They can even go on the test drive with you to point out issues they notice.

Understand the financing office. Most dealerships make the bulk of their money in the financing office. Your interest rate, extended warranties and other add ons are all sold at a premium once you are in there. Understand this, and select any of those options carefully. Most are not necessary for the average car owner.

Don’t divulge your trade-in car immediately. You want to offer your trade-in after you’ve already negotiated the price of your vehicle. Many dealers will give you a worse deal when they know a trade-in is involved.

If you are looking to purchase a used car, it is of the utmost importance that you get a copy of the vehicle maintenance and repair history. This will allow you to see what has been done to the car, and if it has been in any serious accidents.

If you are thinking about buying a car that is still under warranty. You need to make sure that whatever is left of the vehicle warranty is in writing. You don’t want to purchase a car only to find out that the warranty has been void, leaving you paying extra for nothing.

Don’t hand over the keys to your trade in until the deal is signed. If they have your car “hostage,” they can use it to pressure you to buy the new car. Wait until the deal is done to ensure you keep control of the situation at all times during the transaction.

When looking to buy a new or used vehicle, make sure that you never elude to the fact of how much money you have on your person. You only want to talk about what you think you should put down in regards to the terms and price of the vehicle being discussed.

Car shopping is not always an enjoyable experience, given the multitude of factors that must influence the final decision. Education and information are critical tools when it comes to making the right selection. Heed the tips and guidance found above, and you can have a car shopping experience that is not only stress-free, but that results in the perfect choice being made.

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Tried and True Fundraisers

Tried and True Fundraisers

When someone is put in charge of fundraising, their first instinct is to look for something new and different. While change is great, sometimes the tried and true fundraisers work best. That’s why they are tried and true, right?

Whichever fundraiser you choose for your group, consider the amount of time and resources you will need to accomplish your goal. Ask anyone who has organized a quick and easy fundraiser, and they will tell you there was not much quick and easy about it. That’s where tried and true fundraisers come in.

Try one of these ideas for your next fundraiser:

Yard Sale/Garage Sale
Athlet-A-Thon Events
Product Sales
Car Wash
Overlay Fundraiser

Yard Sale/Garage Sale
Parents, neighbors, family members all donate their unneeded belongings to the cause. Locate a site to hold your sale. One person’s yard or the parking lot of a business work well, with permission of course. Advertise cheaply in the local newspaper and by using flyers.

Increase your traffic by advertising that this is a multi-family sale. Each family can attend their own table or you can schedule block times for groups of volunteers to work. How many working volunteers you need will depend on how much stuff you collect. By the end of your sale, you will see that, indeed, one man’s trash is another man’s treasure.

Athlet-A-Thon Events
Called by various names, these “thon” events not only raise money, but showcase the talents of the team! Each team member gets sponsors to sign up for a flat amount or a certain amount they will pay per lap, distance throw, accurate kick, whatever talent or group of talents works best for your team.

Your target sponsors can be local businesses, neighbors, family members, and so on. Save money by making your own pledge forms.

Product Sales
Product sale fundraisers can vary in duration and complexity.

There are three basic categories of product sales:

Immediate sale
Flyer sale
Catalog sale

If simplicity is your goal, go for the immediate sale, or cash and carry items. These are usually low ticket items and often involve something edible. Consider the size of your target audience and order products accordingly. You don’t want to get stuck with leftovers.

For medium complexity and higher revenue and profit than immediate sales, is the one to two-page flyer offering products from a similar category. This is more complex than a cash and carry sale because a second visit to the customer is required to deliver the products they bought.

The more complex product sale fundraiser is the catalog sale. Suppliers offer all kinds of product catalogs from candy or seasonal items to safety and first aid kits. Because catalogs offer a wider variety, the first sales call is more involved. Before choosing which catalog your team offers, consider who you will be selling to. The usual suspects are family members, neighbors, co-workers and local businesses.

Knowing what other area groups are selling or have recently sold can help determine what kind of product you choose to sell. Imagine trying to sell sweet treats on the heels of the Girl Scouts cookie sale. Knowing your competition can determine your level of success.

Car Wash
The most tried and true of them all, the car wash stands true as a great way to raise money. Some advanced planning is involved and getting your volunteers lined up is an important step. Secure a place to hold your car wash; many gas stations and convenience stores are very approachable about having a car wash at their site. It increases their traffic and brings in more potential customers.

You will need a water source (or two), cleaning supplies, promotional posters, and plenty of car washers. Be sure to have some of your volunteers holding signs where passing traffic can see them. Waving car wash signs at a safe location near a busy intersection works well. You can charge a certain amount per vehicle, or simply ask for donations. Often, taking donations reaps more money than a flat fee per car.

Profit Tip: Use An Overlay
Any of these tried and true fundraising methods can be enhance by doing an overlay fundraiser. Do a cash and carry product sale or bake sale at your yard sale, car wash, or “thon” event. While you’ve got your resources gathered, take advantage of it and make as much money at one event as possible. Who knows, you might not have to do that second fundraiser after all!

For any fundraising effort, always make sure your team members are safe and supervised. Be sure each team member can tell a potential “customer” what group they represent and why they are raising money. Everyone should also know what the collective goal is, and the average amount each individual needs to attain to make that collective goal.

By using a tried and true fundraiser, you are using a proven method for your team’s fundraising success.

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The group will accept any vehicle with an engine whether or not it runs.

What You Need To Know About Auto Insurance

Do you know what insurance companies hate? An informed customer. Knowledgeable auto insurance customers get better coverage and lower rates than those less informed. Who do you want to have the advantage when you buy auto insurance, yourself or your insurer? Read on to learn how you can tip the balance in your favor.

If you are driving into Canada or Mexico, many people don’t realize that your American car insurance won’t cover you in a foreign country. You will need to purchase auto insurance ahead of time online, or in the border town or city where you will be crossing over into either Canada or Mexico.

To save money on your car insurance shop for it before shopping for a new vehicle. Besides your driving record and location, the biggest factor in your price is the car they are insuring. Different companies will set different rates that are also based on their experiences paying claims for that type of car.

Before buying a car, take into consideration the cost of the insurance policy for the type of car or cars you are looking at. Generally, the more expensive the car is, the higher the insurance cost will be. Take into account the insurance cost before purchasing the car you have chosen.

Only allow repair companies to use quality parts on your vehicle. Some repair shops will attempt to charge your insurance company for high-priced parts while actually giving you lower quality ones. Double check to make sure you are getting the highest quality parts that go with your vehicle, because that is what the insurance company will be charged for anyway.

Keep your insurance updated with who is actually driving your car. A lot of parents forget to take their children off of their insurance even after they have moved out and gotten coverage of their own. The more drivers on your policy the more you are paying so make sure and keep it up to date.

Be extra careful when you drive so as not to be caught in a scam. Insurance rates are as high as they are due to sophisticated staged accidents which are perpetrated by criminals all over the country. Ensure that you photograph any crash scene and call the police immediately to report the accident.

If you live in a city, own a car and you are getting car insurance, it may be wise to think about moving to the suburbs. By making this move, you could be saving thousands each year on your car insurance, as it is always more costly in the city.

Perhaps you cannot afford to pay much for your auto insurance, but remember that it is a legal requirement to have insurance in order to drive a car. If you get pulled over and cannot prove that you have auto insurance, you will get a fine. Get an extremely cheap insurance if you need to.

Everyone knows that a Ferrari is an expensive car, but what you may not know is that the insurance will be vastly more expensive as well. If you have your heart set on a car like this, make sure that you consider the increased prices of the insurance as well. At times it can be as much as 3 times the price of a normal car.

Know just how much your car is worth when you are applying for car insurance policies. You want to make sure you have the right kind of coverage for your vehicle. For example, if you have a new car and you did not make a 20% down payment, you want to get GAP car insurance. This will ensure that you won’t owe the bank any money, if you have an accident in the first few years of owning the vehicle.

If you are trying to save money on auto insurance you should look at the deductibles available to you and how much of a difference a high deductible makes in price. Go with a high deductible if you can because this will save you money on your insurance premium.

Though it may seem obvious, it bears explicit statement: You should make sure all the cars in your household are on the same insurance policy. If you have recently combined households with someone, compare your insurance and see which policy will offer better consolidated coverage. In virtually every case, a blanket policy is significantly cheaper than individual policies.

Shop for auto insurance yearly. Even if you have no intention of changing policies, or providers, take the time to compare your rate. You can often find savings within the insurance organization you already use, but you will not know to ask without good backup information. Question big rate disparities.

When you pick up simple auto insurance tips like these, you arm yourself to fight for the best insurance deals available to you. You stand out of the pack and get better treatment from your insurer. Educating yourself on auto insurance is bad news for insurance companies, but good news for you and your wallet!

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Giving Your Car to Charity – The New Tax Rules

Giving Your Car to Charity – The New Tax Rules

The IRS has changed the regulations on donating vehicles to charities. If you donated a car last year, you need to read the following to understand the new rules.

Giving Your Car to Charity – The New Tax Rules

Millions of people donate cars, boats, RVs, motorcycles and many other forms of transportation to charities each year. While doing a good thing is one motivation, reaping a sizeable tax deduction is also a motivating factor. Unfortunately, the IRS has concluded that more than a few people were deduction very optimistic values for their cars. Instead of auditing everyone, the IRS simply changed the deduction rules for vehicle contributions to charity.

If you donated a vehicle of any sort to a qualified charity, but claimed less than 0 as a deduction, you can stop reading. The rule changes don’t apply to such situations. If you are claiming a deduction in excess of this amount, read on.

The new IRS regulations are pretty simple to understand. If you donated a vehicle to a qualified charitable organization, the amount you can deduct is the exact dollar value the charity receives when it resells the vehicle. Put another way, you can no longer claim the blue book value of the car. The IRS wants to know what it was really worth, not what it would be worth if you hypothetically repainted it, got new tires, rebuilt the engine and so on.

Charitable organizations are more than aware of the new regulations and they will more or less take care of everything for you. To donate a car, you simply arrange for delivery to the charity. The charity will then resell the car at some point in time. The organization will then will send you correspondence detailing the gross proceeds from the sale of the vehicle.

This correspondence should, but is not required to, come to you as Form 1098-C. Yes, another form. Simply take the deduction for the gross proceeds on Schedule A and attach the Form 1098-C to your tax return. If the charity sends you a written letter, attach that to your tax return.

While the above may sound overly burdensome, it really isn’t.

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Tips To Find Cheap Auto Insurance Policies

Auto insurance is an essential part of financial planning, but understanding it and choosing the right policy can be tricky. There are so many different kinds to sort through, and then choose. Here are some tips to help you get the right auto policy for you:

When upgrading your car by purchasing extras or replacing parts, consult with your insurer to determine whether your upgrades will be covered in the event of theft or damage to the car. In a lot of cases, insurance companies do not cover these upgrades. They only consider the added value to the entire car.

If you are a senior citizen and you own your car but don’t drive very much anymore, then you may be able to save on automobile insurance. Consider insuring only the main driver of your vehicle. If this person has a good driving record then you can get a much lower rate.

Did you know that a simple feature on your automobile like anti-lock brakes entitles you to an insurance discount? It’s true; the safer your vehicle is, the less you will ultimately have to pay for auto insurance. So when you’re shopping around for a car, spending a little extra for safety features is rewarded in the long run via lower premiums.

There are many TV ads for auto insurance, most of them advertise incredible savings and claim to be cheaper than their competitors. You should not subscribe to an insurance based only on what you have seen on a TV ad. The prices given on TV are based on a particular configuration of demographics and might not apply to you.

Look for an insurance that offers an accident forgiveness option. If you get into an accident, your premium will not go up. Accident forgiveness works in certain situations: make sure you qualify for it before requesting it. Usually, you can get accident forgiveness if you have a good driving record.

Add your husband or wife to your policy. This can reduce your rates greatly because it shows stability. This shows the insurance company that you are a stable and secure driver. This will lower your rates even more than being unmarried or just adding someone that is older, to your policy.

When looking into auto insurance, you need to think about how much insurance you will need. Each state has a minimum amount of coverage each driver needs to maintain, so be sure to use that as a starting point. If your car is worth more, then you need more insurance. Similarly, if your car is a beater, chances are your insurance costs will be significantly lower.

Get knowledgeable about the coverage you have on your vehicle, versus the coverage you have available to you. You may find that you could have a significantly higher coverage available to you than you are taking advantage of. Sometimes the better packages only cost dollars more than your basic policy.

When trying to get affordable auto insurance, keep in mind your state’s minimum liability coverage requirements. You need to know what minimums to obtain so that you can get a policy that matches these particular minimums. You can find a list of your state’s minimums at your state’s insurance commissioner’s website.

One way you can save money on your auto insurance premiums is to pay the full annual cost up front. Many insurance companies charge an extra fee for people who pay monthly premiums. Talk to your insurer to see how much you could save by switching to an annual payment.

If your old car is not worth anything per the Kelly Blue Book value, think about dropping collision and comprehensive insurance coverage. When you make an insurance claim on a car, the insurer will compensate you for what the Kelly Blue Book value is. If your car is not worth anything, you will receive nothing from the insurer.

A simple way to lower your auto insurance premiums is to ask if there is a discount for security features. There may be discounts for features such as steering wheel locks, auto tracking devices and auto alarms. These features lower the risk of loss for the insurance company and they may be happy to compensate you for it.

Work to maintain a good credit score to keep your automobile insurance costs down. It seems almost silly that these two things are related, but many companies will check your credit before issuing coverage. A higher score indicates to the company that you are responsible, and they will often lower your rates because of it.

As stated above, auto insurance is incredibly important to your current and future financial planning. It is also important to understand the different kinds to choose the best policy for your personal needs. Following the above tips, is a very good place to start.

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