Go Green and Save Green with a High-Efficiency Water Heater

(NewsUSA) – As energy costs rise, the "green" movement and conservation efforts have become popular topics. Energy-saving recommendations appear daily in the media, and consumers are being offered subsidies or state and federal tax credits to encourage the purchase of more efficient appliances. However, many homeowners fail to consider their water heater when it comes to going "green."Although today’s water heaters are expected to operate for an average of 13 years, the U.S. Department of Energy recommends shopping for a new water heater if your current unit is more than seven years old. This allows an adequate amount of time for homeowners to research and select a water heater that best meets their needs instead of waiting until their heater breaks down and selecting the cheapest quick fix for cold showers.Consumers are increasingly turning to high-efficiency water heaters when replacing older units or during remodeling and building projects. While these models may cost more initially, savings in water and energy usage continue throughout the lifetime of the appliance, offsetting the price difference. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency reports that these units use 10 to 50 percent less energy, benefits to both your budget and the environment.A recent study by the Gas Technology Institute simulated the residential performance of high-efficiency water heaters and conventional units. The Vertex from A. O. Smith, a hybrid, gas-condensing, residential unit incorporating tank-type and tankless technology, provided the best overall performance at average and high-volume hot water usage, which is the consumption of 64-gallons or more per day of hot water.Endorsed by long-time environmental champion Ed Begley Jr. of the HGTV series "Living With Ed," the Vertex provides sufficient quantities of hot water for shower after shower and operates at 90 percent thermal efficiency. Additionally, it is designed to meet the demands that modern lifestyles require."Using more efficient combustion to produce hot water at lower operating costs and 90 percent thermal efficiency, the Vertex is a good choice for customers who want to save energy without skimping on hot water," said David Chisolm, A. O. Smith Water Heater brand manager.For more information on the A. O. Smith Vertex model, visit hotwater.com/resources/energy-star-qualified-products/.
Source: NewsUSA Entertainment
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Millennials' Savings Priorities? Depends on Their Sex.

Five words or less(NewsUSA) – NewsusaInfographic – One of the biggest differences between millennial men and women when it comes to saving? Vacations.

Women cited it as their top short-term savings goal in TD Ameritrade’s illuminating “Millennials and Money Survey,” while men were most concerned with having an emergency fund.

But don’t think those females surveyed aren’t also worried about coming up short in a crisis. In fact, by a 12-percent margin -; 62 percent vs. 50 percent -; more females were focused on socking money away to deal with what’s described as “the potential for a financial disruption.”

See more differences and the full-sized image here.
Source: NewsUSA Business
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Content Agency Helps Clients With Small Advertising Budgets

(NewsUSA) – These days, there are several ways to get your company’s message out. That is, if you have the money to pay for it. The problem is that small, niche companies need the same exposure (if not more) than the Fortune 500 companies, but are hamstrung by limited resources.Fortunately, advertising doesn’t have to be exclusively PR-centric, but can be a blend of traditional and effective strategies, according to PR News.In this way, Washington D.C.-based NewsUSA does exceptionally well by specializing in writing matte releases — feature articles that help to fill space in newspapers and online media — for its clients.NewsUSA guarantees product placement (around 1,000-1,400 placements per story) for its clients in various media outlets around the world, including television sites and hundreds of digital and print newspapers."NewsUSA’s strength is that it has all these contracts and relationships with newspapers and online media sources that have been built over years and can be trusted for writing and editorial," said www.newsusaadvantage.com/key-team-members/" rel="nofollow">Rick Smith, CEO of NewsUSA. "In terms of mass marketing to the consumer, for some of the budgets that these companies have, there just aren’t a lot of options. That’s where NewsUSA comes in."For NewsUSA client Security Equipment Corporation (Sabre), it granted access to media outlets that the company wouldn’t have had otherwise."As a first-time user of NewsUSA, I was pleasantly surprised, not only with the number of placements we got, but the quality of our placements," said Marisa McKay, marketing manager for Sabre. "Our content was placed in high-profile publications that we wouldn’t have been able to afford if we had to buy traditional advertising space."As a result, the family-owned and -operated manufacturer of the top brand of pepper spray had three stories distributed to more than 3,600 news outlets, both online and in print, for a total reach of more than 90 million readers nationwide. The ad value equivalency of the campaign was more than $1.1 million.Another client, Star Clippers, also saw a huge return on investment when it engaged NewsUSA to write five stories about its ultimate cruising vacation alternative — a tall ship mega-yacht experience aboard authentic re-creations of the classic sailing clipper ships that ruled the waves during the 1800s.In return, Star Clippers garnered more than 6,000 placements that reached more than 319 million readers nationwide, for a total ad equivalency of $3.8 million.For more information, visit www.newsusaadvantage.com.
Source: NewsUSA Business
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How Millennials Are Saving More Money Than Past Generations

(NewsUSA) – Sponsored News – Millennials may still have a way to go before totally gaining their footing as adults, but many are already better at one thing than past generations: saving money.That’s one of the findings of Fidelity Investments’ intriguing second biennial "Millennial Money Study." Yes, 47 percent of those surveyed confessed that their parents have helped them cover expenses since being on their own — and that includes everything from cell phones (21 percent) to clothing (16 percent) to rent/mortgages (12 percent). But most have apparently used that cushion to help start socking bucks away.How much bucks? Well, not only do 62 percent have an investment account, but — are you ready? — 59 percent have a fatter emergency fund, totaling an average of $9,100, than both Gen-Xers or Baby Boomers. See full-sized image here. 
Source: NewsUSA Business
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Riding While Female: The New Peril in the Age of Uber

Five words or less(NewsUSA) – Riding while female.
It’s the new shorthand for the potential danger faced by women using app-based, ride-hailing services like Uber and Lyft. And if you don’t understand just how dangerous many say it can be, you’ve obviously missed the slew of headlines like these from across the country:
* “Uber Driver Charged With Rape Ordered Held After Dangerousness Hearing” (Boston Globe, August 2016)
* “Police Had Tip That Lyft Driver Charged With Sexual Assault Planned to Flee Country” (Dallas Morning News, November 2015)
* “Police: Uber Driver Returns to Rape, Burglarize Passenger at Her Home” (FOX8-TV New Orleans, January 2016)
* “Fake Uber Driver Arrested After Brutal Sexual Assault of Passenger in Westlake: LAPD” (KTLA-TV Los Angeles, April 2016)
That’s right, per that last headline, we’ve now reached the point where bad guys are actually posing as Uber drivers in order to lure unsuspecting women into their cars.
“With the alarming number of alleged sexual assaults involving ride-hail app drivers, it’s urgent that we bring this issue to the forefront of conversations,” says Delilah Rumburg, CEO of the nonprofit National Sexual Violence Resource Center.
To that end, the organization has allied with another nonprofit, the National Limousine Association (NLA), which — in calling for a “Passenger Bill of Rights” last year as part of its “Ride Responsibly” initiative — has been at the forefront of a nationwide movement to subject drivers for the Ubers of the world to the same rigorous criminal background checks as those behind the wheels of taxis and limos.
And now, upping the ante, both have enlisted none other than Pamela Anderson — yes, the former “Baywatch” star — to make their case in a Public Service Announcement. “You can’t always vet the driver you are using,” she says in “The Driving Game!” video, “but the service you are using should.”
Whether even Pam will be enough to steel the backs of politicians up against formidable opponents in the ride-hailing industry in general, and Uber in particular, remains to be seen. The main sticking point: forcing the industry to finally start spending the extra bucks to fingerprint their drivers instead of relying on what NLA President Gary Buffo dismissively calls “the perilously incomprehensive background checks” Uber and its ilk continue to defend.
Just how formidable is the ride-hailing industry?
Well, a few months after Uber and Lyft pulled out of the Austin, Texas, market last May, rather than comply with new fingerprinting regulations that voters had just endorsed, the issue came up again in Massachusetts. Boston, you understand, had been experiencing a rash of alleged sexual assaults by Uber drivers that left women on edge. Even so, lawmakers were unable to muster the votes needed to include a fingerprinting requirement in the statewide law that ultimately passed.
“It’s really frustrating when you see these attacks happen over and over again,” State Senator Linda Dorcena Forry, who favored fingerprinting, tells the Boston Globe. “It’s hurtful to the victim and hurtful to the community.”
“When,” she adds, “is it going to stop?”
Source: NewsUSA Business
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Natural Stone: Discovering New Forms of Art

Five words or less(NewsUSA) – Art can take on many different shapes and sizes in a variety of media. From watercolor paintings and bronze sculptures to still-life photographs and wood carvings, art can become the focal point of any interior living space. But, what if art could become part of a home’s architecture in unexpected ways? The answer is yes, it can, and it comes in the form of natural stone.
Perhaps it’s the allure of the exotic location from which it originated, or an unusual texture or uncommon color — representing that single event in time illustrating when and how the stone was created. Whether it’s a rare stone that is one in a million or one that was uncovered from the depths of the earth, natural stone can truly make a beautiful and exotic piece of art.
“Mother nature definitely has defined and shared her art with us through her supply of natural stone,” says Tom Harty, director of procurement at Stone Source, a company that specializes in curating natural stone and a member of MIA + BSI: The Natural Stone Institute. “The beautiful and creative veining found in natural stone is like a painting on a canvas.”
Whether natural stone is used to draw attention to a fireplace design, or is carefully selected as a standout countertop in a bathroom, the ways in which it can be used are endless. Some homeowners even enjoy mounting stone slabs on interior walls as pieces of art.
Chris Schulte, president of Las Vegas Rock, Inc., a quarry that concentrates on extracting metaquartzite stone and also a member of MIA + BSI, explains that the company’s “rainbow gardens” offer a multitude of natural stone colors ranging from purples and reds to yellows and browns. Some of these stones are so beautiful, they can stand alone as art. “We have many customers who have purchased slabs as wall art,” he says. “In fact, in the cities of Henderson, Nevada and Las Vegas, government buildings have slabs of metaquartzite displayed on the walls.”
Onyx is another type of exotic natural stone that can be used in artful ways. “The translucent character of many onyxes lends them to be backlit and incorporated as decorative pieces,” says Harty. In fact, popular uses of onyx include bar backsplashes, built-in wall cabinets, bathroom countertops, staircases, and fireplaces.
Those who find beauty in nature might see natural stone as more than just another building material; they see it as a unique piece of fine art. For more information about natural stone, visit www.usenaturalstone.com.
Source: NewsUSA Entertainment
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Businesses, Athletes Are Getting in on Game Apps

(NewsUSA) – Sponsored News – There are few topics that cause as much heated debate and passion as sports — especially football. And in this digital age, mobile technology only enables such zeal — which is probably why sports apps are arguably one of the most popular ways to keep up with a beloved team, as well as help diehard football fans decide who will win a matchup on any given Sunday.Consider this: according to the NFL, 70 percent of fans use a second screen while watching football, use apps to allow for easy access to player stats and analysis, and keep in touch with other fans who are watching the game.1One company that is making itself known as the premier place to go for NFL predictions is Pick Factor (www.pickfactor.com). Why? Because it helps gridiron enthusiasts by analyzing thousands of predictions from top sports websites, blogs, radio, and newspapers such as ESPN, Fox Sports, and CBS Sports, finally coming to a consensus prediction for every game.Think you can pick like a pro? Now Pick Factor has launched its new Pick ’em app that allows everyone to test their own predictions. The app not only helps those entrenched in football warfare (be it recreational, an office pool, or various leagues), but now users can also create their own leagues with friends or compete in public leagues.Jim Omer, president of Pick Factor, says that retired NFL players and sports bars have partnered with the company to create their own leagues in order to have their "own game experience.""Famous athletes and businesses are constantly looking for new ways to engage their fans and consumers. This is a way for them to do that," Omer says."I like to think of it as an innovative sports app that’s fun for football fans, and provides our partners with a unique way to promote themselves."For more information, visit www.pickfactor.com or Jim Omer at jim@pickfactor.com
Source: NewsUSA Business
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Content Agency Provides the Best Bang for Your Advertising Buck

Five words or less(NewsUSA) – These days, there are a several ways to get your company’s message out — if you have the dollars to pay for it. The problem is that small, niche companies need the same exposure (if not more) than the Fortune 500 companies, but are hamstrung by limited resources.
Fortunately, advertising doesn’t have to be exclusively PR-centric, but can be a blend of traditional and effective strategies, according to PR News.
In this way, Washington D.C.-based NewsUSA does exceptionally well by specializing in writing matte releases — feature articles that help to fill space in newspapers and online media — for its clients.
NewsUSA guarantees product placement (around 1,000-1,400 placements per story) for its clients in various media outlets around the world, including television sites and hundreds of digital and print newspapers.
“NewsUSA’s strength is that it has all these contracts and relationships with newspapers and online media sources that have been built over years and can be trusted for writing and editorial,” said Rick Smith, CEO of NewsUSA. “In terms of mass marketing to the consumer, for some of the budgets that these companies have, there just aren’t a lot of options. That’s where NewsUSA comes in.”
For NewsUSA client Security Equipment Corporation (Sabre), it granted access to media outlets that the company wouldn’t have had otherwise.
“As a first-time user of NewsUSA, I was pleasantly surprised, not only with the number of placements we got, but the quality of our placements,” said Marisa McKay, marketing manager for Sabre. “Our content was placed in high-profile publications that we wouldn’t have been able to afford if we had to buy traditional advertising space.”
As a result, the family-owned and -operated manufacturer of the top brand of pepper spray had three stories distributed to more than 3,600 news outlets, both online and in print, for a total reach of more than 90 million readers nationwide. The ad value equivalency of the campaign was more than $1.1 million.
Another client, Star Clippers, also saw a huge return on investment when it engaged NewsUSA to write five stories about its ultimate cruising vacation alternative — a tall ship mega-yacht experience aboard authentic re-creations of the classic sailing clipper ships that ruled the waves during the 1800s.
In return, Star Clippers garnered more than 6,000 placements that reached more than 319 million readers nationwide, for a total ad equivalency of $3.8 million.
For more information, visit www.newsusaadvantage.com.
Source: NewsUSA Business
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Which Home Upgrades Really Pay Off?

(NewsUSA) – Sponsored by GAF – If you don’t care about blowing tens of thousands of dollars on upgrades that add little or nothing to your house’s value, you might as well stop reading this and go Google "Pokemon Go" for updates on the latest weird mishaps to befall distracted players. But if you do care — and you’d especially better if you intend to ever sell — then Remodeling magazine’s annual Cost vs. Value Report for 2016 is must reading.Still there? Thought so.So let’s begin by acknowledging what’s perhaps the report’s biggest takeaway: All the academics and real-estate pros are right to "tout the value of projects that promote curb appeal." Read on to see why, and where else your money is or isn’t well spent.* Worth it: a new front door.You’re looking at returns on investment of 91.1 percent for a steel one and 82.3 percent for a more upscale (and expensive) fiberglass one. Of course, a fresh coat of paint on your existing door can help spiff things up too.* Not worth it: upscale bathroom remodeling.You may think everyone shares your dream of a huge bathroom with a whirlpool tub, heated towel bars, and stone countertops. Not so, warns Patsy O’Neill, a sales associate with Sotheby’s in Montclair, New Jersey: "You could spend $60,000 or so on it, and it still might not suit a buyer’s taste." Which helps explain why it has one of the worst returns on investment.* Worth it: fiberglass attic insulation.A huge win for greenies. The magazine finally agreed to add an energy-efficiency project, and it topped the list by recouping 116.9 percent of its cost.* Not worth it: composite deck addition.Another also-ran — and, no, Alaska didn’t skew the results. But be aware that sometimes even the seemingly coolest upgrades may simply be out of whack for a particular neighborhood. "You can turn your house into a palace, but the payoff will be small if it’s the only mansion on the block," Craig Webb, Remodeling’s editor-in-chief, tells Time.com.* Worth it: a new roof."Buyers pay a premium for one already in place," according to Credit.com. No kidding. A perennial Remodeling magazine A-lister, it’s the ultimate curb appeal enhancer when you consider that your roof is the first thing prospective buyers notice even before exiting their cars.And if yours looks like something out of "Twister"? "It’s a huge turn-off," says O’Neill, "and makes buyers predisposed to find even more things they don’t like." If your roof needs replacing, check out the Value Collection Lifetime Designer Shingles from GAF (gaf.com), North America’s largest roofing manufacturer, which have the look of luxury shingles at a very affordable price. And remember: Don’t be afraid to use a new roof as the "negotiating tool" with buyers that Credit.com says it is.Watch the video here.* Not worth it: an upscale master suite.Those same "taste" issues aside, returns of only about half your investment make this yet another expensive miss. 
Source: NewsUSA Business
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Reverse Mortgages Can Be a Valuable Retirement Tool

Five words or less(NewsUSA) – This article is a paid advertisement. The content was provided by One Reverse Mortgage.
Today’s reverse mortgage has more uses than you may realize. In fact, many financial advisors are now recommending this loan to their older clients. Why?
A reverse mortgage allows you to access a portion of your home equity and use the funds to pay off your current mortgage.* Any remaining money can be used for anything. The program has a variety of products to meet specific goals.
The fixed rate loan allows you to receive a lump sum or monthly distributions. The purchase loan product allows you to purchase a home without a required monthly mortgage payment as long as you live there.* However, according to One Reverse Mortgage, a leading lender in the reverse mortgage industry since 2007, the most popular and beneficial loan option is the line of credit, which has the potential to grow in value over time.
It’s a fact that people today are living longer; and studies show that many are not financially prepared for retirement. According to an article from Time Magazine, one in three Americans does not have any money saved for retirement.**
The reverse mortgage line of credit addresses these concerns. It isn’t just for people who have an immediate need. It is even more beneficial as a retirement tool because the line of credit product can actually extend the life of your retirement savings and give you access to more money later. Another smart way to utilize it is to live off the proceeds to delay using other benefits to give them time to increase in value. The greatest feature of the reverse mortgage line of credit is that the available funds increase in value over time when left untouched. It can be a perfect safety net for future expenses – both planned and unexpected.
The mission of One Reverse Mortgage is to educate people about this program and how it can be best used in retirement. The experts at One Reverse Mortgage are licensed professionals and the company operates nationwide. It also has an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau.
For more information, visit www.onereversemortgage.com
* Homeowner is still responsible for taxes, insurance and property maintenance.
**Kirkham, Elyssa. “1 in 3 Americans Has Saved $0 for Retirement.” Time Magazine. 14 March 2016. http://time.com/money/4258451/retirement-savings-survey
Equal Housing Lender. Listed in all 50 states. One Reverse Mortgage NMLS #2052
These materials are not from HUD or FHA and were not approved by HUD or a government agency.
Source: NewsUSA Business
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