When is Purchasing an Annuity a Good Idea?

Many have increasingly turned to annuities to secure a stable retirement. An annuity is a financial product. It provides a steady and reliable income stream over a specified period or for the entirety of one’s life.


It acts as a contractual agreement between an individual and an insurance company. Individuals invest in a lump sum or make periodic payments in exchange for regular disbursements, commonly during retirement.


Financial planning ensures a secure and worry-free retirement. As individuals navigate retirement readiness, the role of annuities emerges as a critical component in their financial toolkit. Unlike other investment vehicles, annuities offer a unique proposition.


They guarantee a predetermined income flow. Hence providing a sense of financial security in an unpredictable economic environment.


Individuals gain access to a financial instrument. They can not only address the need for a consistent income stream during retirement. They also act as a shield against the uncertainties of market fluctuations.


The Best Senior Services deeply values this plan and is here to aid in exploring.


Structure your annuity with The Best Senior Services.


This guide will show why purchasing an annuity becomes a prudent decision. These financial tools play a pivotal role in fortifying one’s economic foundation.

Understanding Annuities

In financial planning, individuals often turn to diverse financial instruments. And each caters to distinct financial objectives. To understand these tools comprehensively, it’s crucial to differentiate between three primary types: fixed, variable, and immediate.

1. Fixed Options

  • Stability: These options provide a steady and predictable income stream.
  • Consistent Returns: Fixed options offer a set interest rate. So, it ensures a reliable return on investment.
  • Risk Mitigation: Ideal for financial security and a consistent income flow.

2. Variable Choices

  • Investment Dynamics: With variable options, individuals can invest in various sub-accounts like mutual funds.
  • Market-Dependent Returns: Returns hinge on the performance of chosen investments, exposing investors to market fluctuations.
  • Flexibility: Suited for those comfortable with risk-seeking potentially higher returns.

3. Immediate Payouts

  • Timely Income: Immediate options initiate income disbursement shortly after the initial investment.
  • Lifetime Assurance: Payments persist throughout the annuitant’s life, addressing the uncertainty of longevity.
  • Ideal Timing: Suitable for individuals seeking immediate income upon retirement.

Operational Dynamics

These financial instruments operate on a straightforward yet effective mechanism. It involves a contractual agreement between individuals and insurance companies.


  • Investment: Individuals make lump sum payments or contribute periodic premiums.
  • Accumulation Phase: Funds grow during this phase, accruing interest or investment returns.
  • Distribution Phase: Upon the annuitant’s decision to receive income, the annuity enters the distribution phase. Then, regular payments begin.

Reliable Income and Longevity Risk

One standout feature of these instruments is the assurance of a guaranteed income. It significantly mitigates longevity risk – the risk of outliving financial resources.


  • Income Assurance: These instruments provide a dependable income stream. Hence, they offer financial stability and peace of mind.
  • Longevity Risk Management: These instruments ensure you keep getting paid for life. They act as a safeguard against the uncertainties of living longer than expected.


Understanding these distinctions is essential. Fundamental mechanics and guaranteed income empower individuals to make informed decisions. Hence, aligning these financial tools with their unique goals is more accessible.

When Annuities Make Sense

Individuals often find solace in specific scenarios where certain financial instruments shine. Exploring when these instruments, specifically known for their reliability, make sense unveils valuable insights.

1. Retirement Security

Financial instruments, especially those guaranteeing steady income, become exceptionally favorable during retirement. It is ideal for individuals seeking a reliable economic foundation. Financial instruments provide peace of mind and stability.

2. Market Volatility Concerns

In unpredictable market fluctuations, individuals often turn to financial instruments for stability. These instruments act as a buffer against market volatility. They safeguard against sudden economic downturns.

3. Long-Term Financial Planning

Financial instruments offer a consistent income stream for those with a long-term view of financial planning. Their ability to provide financial security over an extended period aligns with long-term financial planning objectives.

Benefits of Steady Income Streams

  1. Financial Security in Retirement


Financial instruments assure a steady income stream during retirement. They provide a reliable source of funds. This regular income ensures that individuals can maintain their lifestyle and cover essential expenses. This is without worrying about market fluctuations.


  1. Peace of Mind


The predictability of income from financial instruments contributes to peace of mind. Hence, individuals can enjoy their retirement years without economic uncertainties. They can get a fixed amount regularly. Thus, it offers a sense of security that aligns with retirees’ desire for stability.

Mitigating Market Volatility

  1. Risk Mitigation


Financial instruments act as a crucial tool in mitigating market volatility. It is by providing a guaranteed income. The stability offered by these instruments shields individuals from the adverse effects of market downturns.


  1. Consistent Returns


While market investments may face fluctuations, financial instruments have fixed returns. So, they offer a dependable income. This consistency proves invaluable, mainly when individuals aim to reduce exposure to the uncertainties associated with market investments.

Financial instruments prove the most advantageous. Especially where financial stability, reliable retirement income, and market volatility mitigation are paramount. Their ability to offer steady income streams in various circumstances makes them valuable tools.

Considerations Before Purchasing an Annuity

Before adding financial instruments to your portfolio, know about their risks. Consider the following factors to make informed decisions that align with individual financial goals:

Addressing Potential Drawbacks and Risks

  1. Limited Liquidity


Financial instruments may have limitations on liquidity, restricting the ease of accessing funds. Consider the implications of reduced liquidity on overall financial flexibility, especially in emergencies.


  1. Market Dependency


Certain types of financial instruments may tie returns to market performance. Understand the level of dependency on market conditions. Assess whether this aligns with risk tolerance and overall financial strategy.

Factors to Consider


  1. Fees and Charges


Examine the fee structure of financial instruments, including administrative fees and any charges for surrendering the policy. Understand the impact of fees on the overall returns and weigh them against the benefits provided by the instrument.


  1. Surrender Charges


Some financial instruments impose surrender charges for early withdrawals or cancellations. Evaluate the surrender charge schedule and assess the implications of potential charges based on the intended investment horizon.


  1. Impact on Liquidity


Assess how incorporating financial instruments may impact overall liquidity. Consider whether the reduction in immediate access to funds aligns with short-term financial goals and liquidity needs.

Guidance on Assessing Alignment with Financial Goals

  1. Understand Individual Goals


Clearly define short-term and long-term financial objectives. Evaluate whether financial instruments contribute to achieving these goals or if alternative strategies may be more suitable.


  1. Risk Tolerance Assessment


Conduct a thorough risk assessment to determine the level of risk tolerance. Ensure that the risk associated with financial instruments aligns with individual comfort levels and overall risk management strategies.


  1. Professional Advice


Seek guidance from financial professionals with expertise in financial planning and instrument selection. Leverage professional insights to assess whether financial instruments complement broader financial strategies.


Examining associated factors is paramount when considering potential drawbacks. This thoughtful approach ensures that these tools are strategic in achieving long-term financial success.

Types of Annuities

Understanding the subtle differentiators among annuity types—fixed, variable, and immediate—provides valuable insights into how each serves distinct financial objectives.


  1. Fixed Annuities


Fixed annuities offer a stable income stream, shielding investors from market volatility. These are good for folks who want a steady income in retirement.


They’re ideal against market risks because the interest rate stays fixed. It doesn’t change with market ups and downs. This appeals to individuals who prioritize financial stability over potential higher returns.


  1. Variable Annuities


Variable annuities provide flexibility by allowing individuals to invest in various sub-accounts. They are for investors with market exposure. They are also ideal for those seeking the potential for higher returns through varied investment options.


Returns are linked to chosen investments, so they offer the opportunity for increased yields in favorable market conditions. They appeal to those looking for potential growth while acknowledging the associated market risks.


  1. Immediate Annuities


Immediate annuities cater to individuals requiring primary income, with payouts commencing shortly after the initial investment. They are ideal for retirees transitioning into a fixed income and seeking instant financial support.


Lifetime payouts address the risk of outliving financial resources. It provides consistent income throughout an individual’s life. They appeal to those prioritizing longevity protection and a reliable income stream in retirement.

How Each Annuity Type Aligns with Different Objectives

Individuals should consider their unique financial goals and risk tolerance when choosing the right annuity. Here’s a breakdown of how each annuity type aligns with different objectives:


  • For Stability and Predictability: fixed annuities serve individuals prioritizing stability and predictable income, shielding them from market volatility.
  • For Flexibility and Growth Potential: Variable Annuities are ideal for those seeking flexibility and potentially higher returns, willing to navigate market-linked risks.
  • For Immediate Income Needs: Immediate Annuities provide instant financial support to retirees or those needing immediate cash flow.

Navigating the Annuity Market

Navigating the annuity market requires a thoughtful approach. This is to ensure well-informed decisions that align with financial goals. Consider the following tips for choosing the right annuity product:


  1. Define Financial Objectives


Clearly articulate short-term and long-term financial goals before exploring annuity options. Align the features of the selected annuity with specific financial objectives to ensure a tailored fit.


  1. Evaluate Risk Tolerance


Assess personal risk tolerance to determine the most suitable annuity type. Match risk preferences with the features of fixed, variable, or immediate annuities for a harmonious fit.


  1. Compare Contract Terms


Scrutinize contract terms, including fees, surrender charges, and payout options. Thoroughly understand the terms to make informed decisions based on individual preferences and financial circumstances.

Researching Reputable Annuity & Insurance Companies

It’s crucial to partner with a reputable insurance company. So, checking premium qualities like financial strength, customer reviews and testimonials, and regulatory compliance is an excellent strategy.


  1. Financial Strength


Prioritize insurance companies with a solid financial track record. Assess their financial stability and ratings to ensure the reliability of the chosen annuity provider.


  1. Customer Reviews and Testimonials


Explore customer reviews and testimonials about the insurance company. Real-life experiences provide valuable insights into the company’s commitment to customer satisfaction.


  1. Regulatory Compliance


Verify that the insurance company complies with regulatory standards and requirements. Ensuring adherence to industry regulations enhances confidence in the company’s integrity and accountability.

Plan a Secured Future

Understanding individual financial goals, risk tolerance, and contract terms is paramount in annuities. Fixed, variable, and immediate annuities offer unique benefits, catering to stability, flexibility, and direct income needs. Researching reputable insurance companies adds an extra layer of assurance.


Consult with financial professionals for personalized guidance. They can provide tailored advice and ensure well-informed decisions. Align your annuity choices with your aspirations to empower your financial journey and secure a stable and rewarding financial future.

How can I Find Quality In-Home Care to Take Care of my Mom?

The great majority of elderly people live at home and at some point, they will need some assistance. So, if you oversee your parent’s care, you will, at some point, need to obtain extra support for them. There are different choices to choose from when your parents need help. For example, there are home health care, assisted living, nursing facilities, hired caregivers, and family member support, among others. Some are covered by health insurance and some will be out-of-pocket expenses.

There are lots of things to consider, some are listed below:

  • How much help do they need?
  • Does Medicare or insurance cover the care needed? If not do you have a budget to consider?
  • Are your parents open to having someone in their home?
  • Do your parents want to relocate?
  • Is there a family member available and able to help?

The Challenge

From years of experience, the only option to keep elderly parents in their homes would be to hire caregivers. In most cases, keeping the elderly at home appears to be the least painful and costly option. However, it might be difficult to convince your parents to welcome a hired caregiver into their home.  And even more difficult to locate someone who can be trusted.

Another option for care would be family member help. One of the things we often see is that children of the elderly attempt to do miracles. They struggle to keep their parents safe and happy in their homes that are often not designed for their situation.

A Family Member or Hiring a Caregiver for Help

Family members often feel bad about the situation at hand. Children are up against a challenge that no one should address on their own. Our normal houses and communities are not designed to care for fragile elderly people. So, remember that while children often berate themselves, they are attempting to accomplish something impossible. As referenced above, there are lots of help for the elderly.

Another option is to employ someone to help with your parents. If you can locate the proper individual, there are actual benefits to employing someone to assist in caring for the elderly. It can improve your parent’s social isolation and offer the children a respite.  In addition, it can provide an objective view of their condition — a hired assistant can be beneficial to everyone.

Home Care vs. Home Health

“Home care” or “personal care” are terms used to describe paid home assistance. Providing home care may assist your parent with a wide range of duties including bathing, dressing, and feeding. Also, included are driving, shopping, food preparation, and light cleaning.

“Home care” and “home health” terms are not interchangeable. Physician-ordered medical treatments fall under home health. This is provided by medically competent professionals such as nurses and therapists in the patient’s home. It is also covered by Medicare.

Home care, on the other hand, is not a medical service, nor is it covered by Medicare. Families usually pay for home care out of their own pockets. Or, sometimes, Medicaid or long-term care insurance will cover home care. If you are planning to employee help for your parent, learn how the system works. It could save you lots of money. Below are the four actions you take to improve your chances of success.

Consider a Home Care Agency

Home care is frequently delivered through agencies. Often the same agency can provide numerous types of care for your parent(s). Check with your parents’ physician for a list of options for the care they need. Physicians usually know who would be best for their patient’s needs.

Working with an Agency

From discussions with friends, coworkers, and caregivers, it appears that working with an agency is the way to go. Without a doubt, choosing an agency is a frustrating experience. What you think you need and what a normal agency generally provides are frequently incompatible. Understanding this disconnect and changing your expectations is critical to getting the most out of an agency.

Because it’s our parents, we’re hoping that the agency will send us a senior-care Mary Poppins. And she will be well-paid and willing to come in for an hour or two to assist them. In actuality, the agency pays roughly $15 to $25 per hour for someone to come to your parents’ home. This person may utilize public transit and work for many agencies and/or occupations. Also, they may or may not receive benefits, supervision, or ongoing training.

It’s vital to understand what the agency’s home care services will provide vs. your must-have requirements. Often it is best to purchase a good amount of home care hours from the organization you choose. This way they have more freedom in scheduling the most important things on your list. It will be a costly option to hire someone to assist your parents. But on the other hand, you’ll also have a higher chance of obtaining the personal assistance you want, using an agency.

Consider Avoiding an Agency

Many people opt to bypass home care agencies and hire a home care helper on their own. Because there are many restrictions with the agency model, this helps families get the care they want. The benefits of this strategy can be significant. You have a better chance of finding someone who is truly remarkable. As well as a good match for your parent – but the difficulties of finding the right person are substantial. This option requires that you find the individual without the assistance of an agency. And you must handle all of the screening and scheduling yourself. In other words, you must be the employer, with all the responsibilities it involves. And there is no guarantee of training or quality of the person you hire.

There are also internet-based businesses that build online marketplaces with varied levels of administration and supervision. Care.com, for example, allows you and potential caregivers to meet online. Then it provides background checks, pricing, and online bill pay. Look into “Carelinx” and “Honor” if you reside in the West or Southwest. They appear to be making efforts to increase the compensation of staffers. Another company is “Honor” and they will develop a care plan and assign care managers. In addition, “Honor” and “Carelinx” appear to strike a fair balance between the requirement for in-person and digital connection. This is something that traditional agencies are struggling with.

Manage it All

Finally, the most difficult aspect of hiring in-home care is that you must manage it most of the time. You’re in charge of more than simply day-to-day duties and home-care personnel. Including understanding the bizarre medical care system, legal complications, and several other logistical issues that arise. And you’re attempting to accomplish it all while staying inside your budget and avoiding family feuds. This is a significant amount of weight to bear.

Additional Help

Consider employing services that aren’t oriented toward older individuals. For example, online options like grocery delivery and transportation services (like Uber). Also available are service providers like TaskRabbit or Amazon House Services. These provide more normal duties like driving, shopping, and home upkeep for your parents.

If possible employ an Aging Life Care Professional, generally a social worker or nurse. Generally, someone who will take on these more complicated and multi-dimensional obligations. If you can’t afford a full-time manager, hire a consultant for a few hours to help design a care plan. They can also assist you in reducing the possible 66 agencies down to four or five choices. Taking these basic steps of care planning and expert advice will pay off in the long run. And hopefully, save your sanity and be the best choice for your parents’ care.

6 Ways to Protect Yourself from Being Scammed

We’re all familiar with what a scammer is: someone who will tell you false information to gain access to your money or identity. As we grow further into a digital era, we become more aware of the scamming techniques that may be used against us to take what we’ve earned. Unfortunately, scammers are also becoming smarter and are implementing new ways to trick us. Not everyone is able to recognize that they are being scammed, especially seniors.

However, this doesn’t mean we should sit back and let someone try to steal our information or money. It’s important you know what scammers will do so that you can identify this and stop it from happening to you.


In this article, we’ll be covering the popular scams that are out there regarding Medicare and will tell you how you can protect yourself from Medicare scammers. But, first, we’ll delve into why scammers try to target seniors in particular.


The FBI has listed four reasons as to why they believe scammers prey on seniors:


  1. Seniors are the most likely to have extra money (a home, retirement savings).
  2. Seniors are less likely to report fraud because they don’t know who to call, they’re embarrassed, or they’re unaware they’re being scammed
  3. Older adults often suffer from memory loss, meaning they’re less likely to be a reliable witness. Scammers know this and use it to their advantage.
  4. Individuals who grew up in the 1930s – 1950s are known to be more polite and trusting. Scammers will use these characteristics against them.


Now that you know why you’re at risk, it’s important to know what the scammers will do.


What they do

The best way to describe how scammers will approach you is to walk you through an example. Let’s set the scene:


Rae Ann has just woken up and has made herself a cup of coffee. While she sips on her coffee, she checks her emails, and sees that she has an email from “John.” He is a Medicare agent who believes her Medicare benefits are about to be suspended. All he needs is her credit card and Medicare information, as well as her phone number, and he will be able to fix her problem. Rae Ann is surprised – after all, she had no idea that her benefits were about to be suspended. She had just talked with an agent last month and he didn’t indicate that she was at risk of losing them. Not only that, but she is diligent on paying her monthly premiums. However, fearing that ignoring the email will worsen the problem, she quickly clicks on the link that “John” provided and types in her information. Shortly after, Rae Ann receives another email from “John” that states her benefits are no longer in danger. Everything worked out great, right?

Two days later, Rae Ann is enjoying another cup of coffee when she gets an alert from her bank. Hundreds of dollars linked to her account has just been spent in another state. She’s shocked and confused. First, she discovered that her benefits may be taken away, and now her credit card has been hacked and hundreds of dollars are gone? After explaining the bizarre events to her neighbor, he tells Rae Ann something she never thought she’d hear. “John” isn’t really a Medicare agent. “John” is a scammer, and she’s just been scammed.


It’s important to note that you can be scammed in more ways than one. Being scammed is not an event that is limited to emails. You can receive scam phone calls or text messages too. Scammers will find anyway to contact you to establish an emergency or immediate benefit: you’re paying too much or not enough, you need to verify your personality, or even messages displaying false promises, like a free health consultation.


And, unfortunately, this is a common occurrence. There are thousands of scammers in the United States alone who are actively trying to take what doesn’t belong to them.


How can you tell if you’re being scammed?

Luckily, spotting a scammer doesn’t have to be difficult. Let’s say that you get an email telling you that your Medicare information needs to be verified. Have you ever wondered who is behind this email? Simply tap on the email address of the sender and see what it is. If the address is sent by someone who has a name separate from who is contacting you, or it’s from one that is filled with random numbers and letters, someone is trying to scam you.


Also, if a deal seems too good to be true, then it is. If something sounds like an amazing deal, then double check with a specialist who will be able to tell you whether what you are seeing is legitimate.


Make sure you’re also reading the email in depth. If the email is filled with sentences in broken English, then you’re reading a message from a scammer.


Finally, there is another method that could expose an entire scam. Copy the body of the email and paste it into your internet search engine. Results could lead to you discovering that this email wasn’t sent to you on accident. Your search will link you to online forums and articles about the specific scam you’re receiving with warnings not to fall for it.


Below is a list of Medicare scams that you need to look out for:


  • Biden Health Email
  • Fake COVID-19 Vaccine
  • Natural Health Sherpa Scam
  • Free Medicare Back Brace
  • ZuPoo Colon Cleanse
  • Medicare Scam Calls
  • Free Blood Pressure Check
  • Medicare Coverage Helpline Scam
  • Free Medicare Alert Bracelet
  • Medical Alert System Reviews
  • The Hospital Lien Scam
  • Buy Tramadol Online
  • Fake Life Alert
  • Medical Alert Device Scam
  • Medical Billing Service
  • Hospital Bracelet
  • Buy Prescription Drugs Online


How to protect yourself

There are a lot of ways to protect yourself from being scammed. The first way is to know who you’re dealing with. Knowing who is contacting you, and whether that person is fake, will clue you in on the best way to respond to someone who is phishing for your information (hint: no response is the best response). Other important things to keep in mind while guarding yourself are:


  1. Recognize the ways people will try to scam you. Sometimes, scammers will try to make themselves seem more credible by coming to you in-person. Any service that needs to be in-person, and is approved by Medicare, will require scheduling. Medicare agents will never show up to your house unannounced. Medicare will also not be calling you unsolicited, especially regarding your Medicare card. Look out for calls that encourage you to “renew” your Medicare card because these are scams. Your card will never expire.
  2. Take no immediate action. Like we stated before, scammers will try to create a sense of urgency so that you quickly respond and give them the information they are seeking. Try not to act on anything immediately. Take the time to analyze what they are wanting and determine whether it is a rational request. Even if it does seem real, contact your Medicare agent to double check.
  3. Never give details away. Sometimes, scammers won’t ask for a sum of money. They’ll disguise the message to make it seem like they need your credit card information altogether. Don’t give this information away.
  4. Regularly check your online bank account and credit card statements. Online bank accounts don’t only reveal how much are in your checking or savings — they also revealed what transactions you’ve had, and where. This is an important feature to have because they will reveal if someone has stolen your information and where something was purchased. But checking your online banking account isn’t your only saving grace. It’s also important to check your credit card statements because they will reveal how much you owe on your billing statement, and what purchases and payments you’ve made. Checking both will help you determine whether someone has stolen your information and making purchases with your money.
  5. Keep your PIN to yourself. A PIN — personal identification number — is the number you enter whenever you use a debit or credit card for financial transactions. Think of your PIN number as the final key to verifying a purchase. If someone has stolen your card, but doesn’t know your PIN, it’s likely that he or she won’t be able to complete the purchase. Never share your PIN with anyone. Sharing it with the wrong person could result in you being scammed.
  6. Report any suspicious or unfamiliar transactions to your banking institution. If you notice a suspicious charge on your credit card statement or your bank account, immediately call your bank. Explain to the teller what you believed happened, and what transaction you are referring. The bank will be able to help you from there.


How to report Medicare fraud

If you notice any suspicious transactions, and you’ve already notified your banking institution, there’s still one more thing you need to do: report the scam to Medicare by calling 1-800-MEDICARE (1-800-633-4227). If you’re in a Medicare Advantage Plan, call the Medicare Drug Integrity Contractor at 1-877-7SAFERX (1-877-772-3379). On the other line will be a Medicare representative who is waiting to help report the crime. This will prevent countless of others from being scammed the same way in which you were or could have been. It’s also important to contact Medicare even if you didn’t fall for the scam that was pitched to you. Just because you understood what it was doesn’t mean someone else won’t fall for it.


Falling victim to a scam is terrifying, frustrating, annoying and humiliating. But you don’t have to be a victim. Read every email you get to make sure it’s legitimate. Talk to someone you can trust if you’re unsure about the credibility of whoever called you. Make no immediate actions.

But, if you’re still worried about who you can trust, let The Best Senior Services help you. We pride ourselves on educating seniors while connecting them with the best agent that will help you protect yourself and choose the best Medicare plan. Visit our website or calls us at 855.979.8277 to get started today.

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Introducing TBSS: What Do We Do?

TBSS was created with a mission of providing seniors with an information hub for senior-specific concerns such as Medicare, various types of insurance and financial services, and other pieces of advice.  We are also partnered with reputable and trustworthy licensed representatives to further assist our website visitors with any other needs or questions.

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Applying for Medicare or changing your plan can be a complicated and confusing process. Our team members are dedicated to answering your questions about Medicare in an easy-to-understand way. As new questions or concerns arise, we will update the information on our site to meet those needs. Furthermore, we have a reliable team of licensed representatives who specialize in Medicare to answer any further questions you may have.

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We are committed to providing a well-rounded range of services for seniors. We know mortgage and retirement services are important issues for seniors, which means they are a priority to us. We have many resources on our site to explain the issues surrounding annuities, reverse mortgage loans, mortgage insurance, and retirement and financial planning.

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TBSS also provides information about these subjects in a sensible and simple way. Not only do we have resources explaining final expense insurance, but we also provide information on issues such as funeral and burial costs. We know these topics can be difficult to consider and plan for, that is why we find it extremely important to explain them in the most appropriate and straightforward way possible.

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