5 Things You Need But Don't Actually Have
April 25, 2016
Life is full of tangible items we have but don’t need, and things we want but don’t have. The newest iPhone, a smart watch, another pair of shoes, the newest video game. But what about the items we need, but don’t actually have? These may be items you wouldn’t think about frequently, or ever, but they can help make your life more convenient and to increase your safety, security and overall well-being.
1. Renter’s insurance
If you don’t own your home and your rental goes up in flames at no fault of your own, your landlord is responsible for the damage to the property. But what about your personal belongings inside? Renter’s insurance provides you coverage of your personal belongings. Not only does a renter’s insurance policy cover damages and loss due to fire, but may also cover theft or other natural disasters depending on your provider and policy. For a (generally) low payment each month, you can rest easy at night knowing that the monetary value of your Macbook, Samsung Smart TV, engagement ring, and vintage video game collection is covered and accounted for in case of a horrible incident that leaves you without your belongings you worked so hard for.
Let’s paint another picture. Hypothetically, your apartment building catches fire or the roof of your rented home becomes damaged to the point it is deemed no longer livable until fixed. Where do you move to? Your in-laws? That sounds dreadfully aggressive. Renter’s insurance helps policy holders cover their living expenses while seeking temporary residence, such as hotel rooms and even restaurant bills – any expense that you typically wouldn’t incur. So hooray! There’s no need to slumber in a crowded basement bedroom and be forced to make small talk over coffee and under-cooked quiche.
Renter’s insurance doesn’t stop there. If someone becomes injured or disabled while in your home, it is your responsibility – you are liable. If said person requires medical attention and you are found responsible, you might as well say goodbye to a large portion of your savings. Doesn’t sound like something you’re interested in? Enter renter’s insurance. Policies help cover your legal bills, the injured person’s medical expenses, and more. (Source)
2. An emergency savings account
I like to call this account the “oh shoot I didn’t account for this accrued, unavoidable expense and I can't afford to dip into my savings again” account. Typically, most hard-working individuals don’t account for that fender bender, doctor-recommended MRI, or your flooding washing machine that needs to be repaired. Think about it. If you get paid biweekly and you put away $50 of each paycheck into a separate emergency savings account, you could have $300 in 3 months. These surprise curve balls life throws at us shouldn’t add to our daily financial stress (which according to an APA survey, 72% of people experience every month) – so let’s be prepared!
3. A plant
The health benefits of having a living plant in your home or in your office are more substantial than one would initially think. According to Bayer Advanced, a plant can help you breathe easier, purify the air, improve your health, and sharpen your focus.
During photosynthesis, plants take in the carbon dioxide we exhale and release oxygen for us to breathe. Ah, the good ol' circle of life. This fresh oxygen helps to ease our breathing while also aiding in the removal of toxins from the air that are often emitted from dirty carpets, our pets, blown in through open windows, cigarette smoke residue, and more.
Plants are also known to help increase concentration, sharpen focus, and reduce fatigue and stress. An increased level of oxygen to the brain is responsible for these benefits which are provided to by plants through the process of photosynthesis.
So get up and go get a plant! While you’re out at the store picking out some serious greenery, stop by your bank as well and open up that emergency savings account. Who doesn’t love to kill two birds with one stone?
Don't forget to water your plant often and keep it in a place that is accessible to some shining sunlight.
4. A primary care physician
One of the most valuable reasons to have a primary care physician rather than relying on urgent care and the ER every time you need medical attention is the rapport and trust you can build with a single individual. Your doctor learns your medical history, health habits, and current medical diagnoses (if any) and can instruct the best course of action for whatever reason you may be paying the doc a visit.
Cost is another factor. According to Compass PHS, copays for an urgent care visit can be around $25-$50 more than a trip to your doctor. If you head over to urgent care because you don’t think you’ll be able to get squeezed in to see your doctor, most physicians reserve blocks of time throughout their day to allow for sick patients visits. If it’s after business hours and seeing a professional can’t wait, urgent care is a (monetarily) better choice than the emergency room – unless it’s a life-threatening emergency or an episode that needs immediate medical attention!
5. A toaster oven
If you managed to survive college without one of these puppies, then God bless. The toaster oven is the miracle appliance of all appliances – the high and mighty, the bees knees, the cat’s meow. What would normally take, say 20 minutes, to reheat a slice of pizza from last night from the time you preheat the oven until your crispy delicacy comes out piping hot, the toaster oven can accomplish such task in about, I’d say, 6-8 minutes. The science behind it? Volume! It’s much quicker to heat up a space the size of a shoe box than an entire oven. Cheers to the genius behind this holy box.
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