Consumption Sabbath

Give Your Wallet a Day Off

When Should You Sell Your Shares

Posted By on Sep 12, 2019

Texas is known for oil. Often referred to as “black gold,” oil is one of the most lucrative products to come out of Texas. As such, many Texans have rights to oil shares.

These oil shares can turn a nice profit if used correctly. Many people have gotten rich off of oil, and many more will continue to profit off of it. However, some people may not be sure if keeping their shares is even worth the hassle. If you’re not sure whether or not you should keep your share of oil, minerals, or gas, here are some things you should consider.

  • #1 Do you need money now?

While oil can be worth a pretty penny, it often takes time to accrue that value. If you’re incredibly crunched for time, you may not have the ability to wait for the paychecks to start coming in. Liquidating your share of oil can help give you immediate cash, something that’s attractive to anyone in need of a little help.

If you’re getting ready to retire, you might notice your retirement fund is looking a little bit scarce. A small retirement fund is what leads to many senior citizens either working well past the retirement age or struggling to pay the bills. A large sum of money from an oil liquidation can add some padding to any retirement fund and allow you to finally relax after your years of hard work.

  • #2 Diversifying your portfolio

Oil is a great thing to have a share in, but it’s not the only thing. Potential investors like seeing a well-rounded portfolio, even if the shares aren’t particularly large in and of themselves. Liquidating part of your oil, mineral, or gas shares can give you the quick money you need to invest in other prospects. In turn, you may end up making more money than you ever could by just focusing on oil!

  • #3 So you want to liquidate; what comes next?

After you sift through all of the available information, you decide that liquidation is the best path for you. From there, you should find an investor interested in increasing their shares of the oil, mineral, and gas industry.

In addition to a private investor, a mineral auction might be an option worth considering — and The Mineral Auction can walk you through one if you’re unfamiliar. A mineral auction pairs those selling oil shares with those looking to buy- it’s a match made in Heaven. In addition, going to an auction can help settle any questions you may have about liquidation.

Liquidation can be a long process that has long effects on your finances. On top of finding a buyer, you want to make sure that you have the best buyer available. Auctions ensure that you’re getting the highest bidder for your oil share. Furthermore, a mineral broker can help you with any questions about taxes you have. Since liquidating your shares in oil has a massive impact on your taxes, it’s worth meeting with a broker to discuss your options.

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The Dangers of Standing Water

Posted By on Apr 17, 2019

I can’t tell if hurricanes and floods are more prevalent, or with more media coverage, I just hear about them more. Either way, it seems like every other week during hurricane season, I see a horrific story about homes getting destroyed or businesses losing their property to a natural disaster.

However, disasters that completely destroy property aren’t the only problem in the world. Sometimes, smaller issues can lead to bigger headaches because they require constant upkeep or multiple repairs. At least, that was the case for when my brother’s house had a huge standing water issue. He asked if I could figure out a solution because I tend to be the more handy brother in our family.

I didn’t know why he thought it was so urgent to fix the standing water issue, but it turns out that standing water on lawns can affect house foundations, causing dangerous cracks in floors. Even worse, standing water eventually collects dangerous contaminants and chemicals like oil that will eventually seep into your lawn. The damage could be long-lasting and turn your green paradise into a brown, dirty mess!

Standing water can also affect tree roots, potentially leading to accidents. Not to mention the mold that can develop if dirty, bacteria-filled water is just lying dormant in puddles on your lawn. All of that is to say, after doing my research, I understand why he was so insistent on getting his drainage issues resolved on his lawn.

The next step, of course, was to find a company that could fix his drainage issues. I’ve never had standing water issues or anything similar on my lawn, so I didn’t have a trusted company to recommend him off the top of my head. Thankfully, the Internet and friends with experience handling issues like this all pointed me in the same direction: Midwest Lawn Co.

Midwest Lawn Co has over a decade of experience in lawn management services like hardscaping, softscaping, outdoor entertainment space installations, and plain old lawn cutting. But they also are the best drainage experts in the Chesterfield area. Their drainage work is holistic, meaning they take into account all of the factors that will impact the current drainage issues but also future potential issues.

Some of those include future rain averages, expected snow runoff, and more. Midwest Lawn Co will send out a specialist to your property to look at the problems and craft a specific solution to your issues; no one-size-fits-all for this lawn service company! Which is exactly what I feared for my brother’s property. I hate companies who cut corners on anything, whether it’s lawn care, product delivery, or even food preparation. I deserve quality service that matches the amount I pay for!

For some lawns, simply installing a grate or easy drainage tool will suffice. But for more extensive issues, subsurface drainage systems may be necessary. Additionally, Midwest Lawn Co will work to protect your pond or water features. Flooding or standing water that seeps into the pond is not only gross but dangerous for the long-term stability of your pond. They will build a pond wall or a draining path for standing water as part of the solutions to draining problems.

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What to Do About Your Borer Problem

Posted By on Oct 28, 2018

I care a lot about trees. Maybe too much, at least according to my friends. The thing is, though, I love to see beautiful green trees in my city and in the local towns. They provide shade from the Texas sun. They provide beauty everywhere you look. They provide fresh air. And they just make life more pleasant.

So, I obviously take tree pest care seriously as well. That’s why I’m putting this out there as a general information piece for those tree owners who may have a serious pest issue and not even realize it. Your tree may be fighting its own borer war, and it may need you to come in for reinforcements.

What are Borers and What Do They Look Like?

Borers are insects that, as their name suggests, bore into your trees and steal their nutrients. They’re extremely dangerous for your tree’s health, and they can be extremely dangerous to deal with, since they may cause your tree to become brittle and for the tree to fall over with very little notice.

According to Hamilton Tree Care, there are three main types of borers you may encounter:

  • The cottonwood borer: Large black and yellow insects, these guys can chomp up a tree very quickly.
  • The redheaded ash borer: These guys aren’t limited to just ash trees, as they’ll attack any dying tree. You’ll know them by their red and yellow colors and by the sawdust they leave behind.
  • The emerald ash borer: These guys are immigrants from China, and they’re causing serious devastation across the U.S. They aren’t in Texas yet, but they’re coming…

Whatever kind of borer you’re looking at in your tree, you need to take the matter seriously. These pests mean business. When they start in on your tree, your tree is in a fight for its survival. That can put your landscaping at risk, and it can also put your safety at risk, since large branches or the whole tree may topple over on your home or on individuals in your yard.

What Should I Do?

Okay, you’re probably sufficiently concerned now. You’ve seen evidence of a borer infestation. You know it’s serious. What do you do?

Go to the experts. You can attempt to treat this problem on your own if you want, but the best thing is to bring in tree care experts who understand the issue and don’t waste time trying out ineffective defenses. Treating your tree incorrectly may lead to the opposite result you were looking for, and the time you waste trying to figure out the right treatment could be fatal for your tree.

Just contact your local experts and let them do the fighting for you. This will also keep you clear of any dangerous falling branches.

Trees are an important part of our parks, our yards, and our forests. We should do more to watch over them. I hope now, if one of your trees has a borer issue, you know what to do to make sure your tree stays strong and healthy for years and years to come.

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Surviving my student loans

Posted By on Oct 18, 2017

I’m looking at my options as a student loan holder, and I thought I’d share my thoughts for anyone else in this position (I get the impression that for anyone under forty, you’re all in this position with me, big boat, but it’s still sinking).

Like a lot of people, I’m struggling to pay back my loans. My education background probably reads as something people snark at as the perfect example why millennials are worthless. I have a master’s in medieval history.

Now, I know that sounds like poor life planning, but it really wasn’t. I was being groomed by several well-established professors for a professorship position. All that would have gone swimmingly in any other decade, but the last ten years have been tough for anyone hoping to get into academics for two reasons: one, the recession (which sent a lot of people back to school when the jobs dried up and exhausted scholarship opportunities) and two, the adjunct professor position.

Point one is obvious, but point two requires a little explaining. In the last decade, colleges and universities have discovered the adjunct position saves them a lot of money. Instead of hiring full-time professors who are experts in their fields, they can hire part-time adjuncts, who make very little money (as little as several hundred across an entire semester) and teach the low-level classes. These adjuncts may be experts or not, but they are cheap. Hiring so many adjuncts have saved universities lots of money, but it has also made choosing a career in academics all that much more impossible.

So, I’ve been left with a lot of loans to pay off and not a lot of money to pay them with. Here are the options that I see available:

  1. This seems like perhaps the best option. I could finally get around to consolidating my loans and getting on an income-based repayment plan. That would keep my payments low. In twenty or so years, whatever is left on my loan is forgiven. But there are downsides. For one, with the current administration already cutting some student loan programs, there’s no guarantee this one will survive. Also, if I still have a hefty bill at the end that is forgiven (a very likely possibility), that forgiveness is charged as income on my taxes, which could send me into bankruptcy in my fifties.
  2. File bankruptcy and hope for the best. There are student loan lawyers who claim to be good at helping on this, but it’s still something of a long shot. It is almost impossible to get student loans removed through bankruptcy because of a series of stupid federal laws. I’d have to be able to claim they are making me destitute which is close to true but not close enough.
  3. Continue on the same. I could try to talk to the loan companies, get a slight reprieve, and hope a better job comes along to help me pay everything back. This, too, is a long shot.

It looks to me like option one really is the only option at this point. I’m going to look more into consolidating through the federal government. I’ll just have to hope the program stays open. Taxes in twenty years, well, hopefully I’m rich by then.

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Cars getting wrecked or totally wrecked, and individuals getting severely injured in car accidents is part of the daily news in the U.S. Cars crashing with another motor vehicle, crashing into a concrete barrier, a wall, a tree, a lamp post or any other solid object, or hitting a motorcyclist, a bicyclist or a pedestrian, have always left properties damaged or, worse, individuals with permanent disability or dead.

Over the years, the number of car on roads and highways has steadily increased; with this, however, is also the increase in the number of car accidents. Studies conducted by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) show that more than 90% of all car accidents are actually due to driver error, which includes driving while impaired by alcohol, illegal drugs or prescription drug, driving too slow, driving above the speed limit or driving too fast despite dangerous road condition, using a handheld phone while driving, failing to observe safety traffic rules, such as ignoring traffic signs, going through a red light, driving recklessly, and driving while distracted. Car accidents can be avoided, definitely, but only if drivers act responsibly whenever behind the wheel.

Aside from those listed above, which are the top causes of car accidents, the NHTSA also include failure  to use signal lights, tailgating, overtaking improperly, and making sudden turns.

An accident is always a traumatic experience, especially to those who sustain injuries and the trauma increases based on the severity of the injury sustained. Besides the injury, another cause of great worry for victims and their families is the financial burden the injury can result to. This is due to the medical treatment and the loss of income as the injury is sure to render the victim incapable of reporting to work. Even the opportunity to land in a good job may be affected by the injury sustained.

As pointed out by the law firm Habush Habush & Rottier S.C. ®, there is no telling how difficult it can be to deal with the financial repercussions of a car accident on your own. If the accident that injured you was caused by the irresponsible actions of others, you may be entitled to seek compensation for your damages.

Filing a lawsuit against the at-fault driver, however, should be done without delay for, according to Sheboygan car accident lawyers, in Wisconsin, for example, the statute of limitations restricts the amount of time in which you have to file a claim after an auto accident. After this time has passed, you may be unable to secure the compensation you need. Thus, it is important to discuss your case with an attorney as soon as possible.



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The Dangers of Bicycle Accidents

Posted By on Mar 7, 2017

Bicyclists are very vulnerable persons on the road. First, they are not like drivers who are somehow protected inside vehicles. Second, they have very limited protections against impact. Third, they are small enough to be disregarded by unsuspecting motorists and get hit. This makes bicyclists more prone to injuries compared to others.

Bicycles are becoming popular because they are economical, green, and promotes fitness. This also means that more and more people are becoming prone to bicycle accidents and injuries.

Common Causes of Bicycle Accidents
Low Visibility Incidents: Bicycles have their own lane, but because of their size, they may not be entirely visible to other cars, so they are at risk of getting hit by unsuspecting motorists. This is more dangerous during night time, foggy situations, and other conditions where visibility can be an issue.

Turning Issues: Vehicles that suddenly turn without regard are some of the leading causes of bicycle accidents. There are times where low visibility is to blame, but there are also times that driver recklessness is the culprit. Examples include vehicles making a right turn and making a bicyclist crash into their right side and vehicles suddenly turning in an intersection while a bicyclist is passing through.

Door Surprises: Before opening a vehicle door, it is a common safety procedure to look back for any incoming motorists who might get hit by the sudden obstruction that an open vehicle door may pose. But some vehicle occupants don’t do this procedure, resulting into bicyclists crashing into suddenly opening vehicle doors.

Common Injuries Associated with Bicycle Crashes
Head Injuries: There is a reason why bicyclists wear helmets. It is the fact that the head area is very vulnerable when riding and crashing. This may result into traumatic brain injuries and even facial disfigurement.

Broken Arms or Legs: The arm and leg areas are very vulnerable when it comes to accidents. When bicyclists crash, their first instinct is to move the arm area forward to absorb the impact, resulting into arm injuries that may be severe enough to be fractures. Since the legs are the primary parts involved in cycling, they are also prone to damage.

Road Rashes: When a bicyclist crashes, he may absorb sufficient friction energy from the pavement, soil, or wherever else he or she has landed. The impact may result into scratches, cuts, and even complications from these injuries, such as infections.

According to the website of the Amerio Law Firm, those who have been injured because of the negligence of another may have legal options, such as getting compensation. This just proves that the law does not tolerate reckless behaviors in the road, so you and the others around you should be careful on triggering any kind of accident.

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According to expert bikers, chances of avoiding accidents and staying safe is higher if bicyclists observe the following road rules on how to ride a bicycle properly.

  • Be part of the traffic and never ride on the right edge of the road, very close to the gravel shoulder, as this may be covered with sand or other debris that can make your bike’s wheel to to skid and cause you to fall;
  • Ride on the right side of the street, at least three to four feet from the gravel shoulder. Along this path, other drivers, even pedestrians, will easily see you. Traffic is also slower at the right side of the road, so this will be a safer path, than at the left, where vehicles run faster;
  • Ride, at least, three feet away from cars parked at the side of streets. This is will keep you safe from car doors suddenly being opened or from cars starting and trying to merge back into the flow of traffic;
  • When riding downhill and your bike begins to run as fast as cars, ride in line with them. Pull a bit to the right, when you begin to fall behind. When passing a car, however, make sure that you pass on its left side; a driver normally expects to be passed on its left side; and,
  • At a red light or at stop signs, stop behind the car that is already stopped awaiting the green light. Never stop at the right side of a vehicle, especially a truck as it may crush you if it makes a right turn.

There are many other precautions that bikers need to observe when riding, especially at night. But there is no safer and smoother way ever to ride than by observing traffic safety rules and riding with the flow of the traffic. Riding this way is also a guarantee that, if ever an accident occurs, your personal injury lawyer will be able to fight for your rights and earn for you the maximum compensation that the law allows, since you will clearly be without fault in the accident that occurred.

In 2009, about 51,000 were injured and as many as 600 were killed in bicycle accidents. These numbers continue to increase, showing the great danger bikers are exposed to. In fact, in 2013, fatal bicycle accidents increased to 900, while about 494,000 were rushed to emergency departments due to injuries. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), the most common causes of collisions between motor vehicles and bicycles include:

  • motor vehicle drivers directly and abruptly turning in front of bikers;
  • drivers, from parking areas or driveways, driving into traffic and cutting a biker’s right of way
  • drivers failing to slow down at intersections
  • drivers running a stop sign or traffic light
  • drivers not taking time to double-check for incoming bikers
  • reckless driving due to negligence or alcohol influence

The (NHTSA) continuously reminds all motorists of their duty to respect the rights of bicyclists on the road, as this is one of the best ways to make transportation smooth and safe for all. Legally, bicycles have the same rights on the road as any other type of motor vehicle. Unfortunately, though, many bicycle riders get involved in accidents because many drivers refuse bikers the space they need on the road. These accidents often result to severe injuries or death.

In its website, the law firm Habush Habush & Rottier says, “bicycles are a fun form of exercise and recreation. For others, they serve as an alternative form of transportation with significant economic and environmental benefits. Whether they are riding for transportation or purely for fun, cyclists face significant risk of injury if they are involved in an accident with a car, truck, or other vehicle.”

Sad to say, but “even cyclists who are extremely diligent about their safety run the risk of being involved in an accident and sustain injuries, such as cuts and bruises, sprains and broken bones, internal organ damage or spinal injuries. Bicyclists who sustain these and other injuries due to another person’s irresponsible actions shouldn’t have to deal with the consequences by themselves. Contacting a personal injury lawyer immediately after an accident may help an injured bicyclist understand his/her legal rights and the possible legal actions he/she can pursue against the liable motorist.

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Buying A Possibly Mold-Infested House

Posted By on Oct 18, 2016

It is important to recognize potential mold issues before buying a house. When house-hunting, make it your responsibility as well to check for presence of molds and potential mold infestation, but the seller also has the responsibility of disclosing information mold problems and to discuss an agreement around the mold problems that is discovered during the flow of the sale. There are many ways that you can detect molds in your potential house.

Aside from doing your own inspection of the house, you can ask for a home inspector to do it for you and give you their professional assessment of the possible danger and risks of mold growth inside the house. They can include their assessment in the inspection report and cite anything that can lead to mold growth. According to the Hach & Rose, LLP personal injury lawyer team, states require sellers and agents/appraisers to disclose information regarding possible presence of molds in the house, as well as circumstances tor situations that can lead to mold growth, otherwise they might be held responsible for withholding information that can endanger you and your family’s health.

If the homeowner or the seller/agent did not disclose any information of a mold infestation in the house that eventually lead to health complications to the new residents who brought the house, the owner or seller can be held liable for negligence and failure to disclose information. It can be difficult to point out who can be held legally responsible for the damage the mold infestation has caused, therefore finding a personal injury attorney should be top priority. They know how the process works and can advice you the best option whether to sue or settle with those responsible. Furthermore, personal injury lawyers understand the state laws can know how each factor in the case can affect the outcome, making a strong case against the owner/seller and ensuring that all damages can be properly compensated.

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