5 Trendy Gadgets to Invest in for Your Home and Family

What’s trending in the world of family gadgets? What new technology should you invest in to improve the quality of your family life? In this article, we take a look at the five hottest and most practical pieces of tech that will positively impact your home environment and make life easier for you and your loved ones.

1) Google Home

Google Home is a voice-activated speaker powered by the Google Assistant. It can do all the things you’d expect from a Google product, like search the internet or give you updates on the weather. You can also use it to control your smart home devices – make sure your lights turn off when you leave the house or switch on a fan before bedtime.

2) Amazon Echo

Amazon Echo is a voice-activated speaker that can play music, answer questions, read the news, set alarms, and make phone calls. It’s a great way to get started with internet-connected home devices. You can use it to do all sorts of tasks around the house just by asking Alexa.

3) Philips Hue Lights

Philips Hue Lights are a great investment for your home. These lights have a variety of color options, so you can personalize the atmosphere of your home. They also have the option to set up timers, so they turn on when you’re not there. This is great because it means you don’t have to worry about forgetting them when you go out!  The Philips Hue Lights are also great because they are environmentally friendly.

4) Nest Thermostat

The Nest Thermostat has been called one of the best inventions of the 21st century. There are many great features that make this thermostat a must-have, but two of the most important are its ability to learn your family’s schedule and its remote control capabilities.

5) Samsung SmartThings

One of the latest gadgets on the market is a product called Samsung SmartThings. Samsung SmartThings is a small hub that connects all your home electronics together. This device can be used to control all your lights, power outlets, garage door, front door, or anything else you can think of using Wi-Fi or Bluetooth. The best part about this device is that it doesn’t require any installation. Simply plug in the hub near your router and you are ready to go!

How do you protect your investments for your home?

CYA is here to make sure that your assets work the way they were made to. Cover Your Assets is a monthly warranty program created by the experts at Consumer Priority Service designed to cover your electronic products. CYA covers every kind of electronic product and appliance that you have in your home, apartment, dorm, or business. New cell phone? Old TV? We got you. These warranties include coverage for accidental damage, water damage, and hardware failure. Find out how CYA can protect your stuff at cya.insure.

10 Questions to Ask Yourself Before Buying a New Home

Before making the decision to purchase a new home, there are plenty of questions you’ll want to ask yourself to help you decide if this truly is the right choice for you. Your financial situation, your family needs, and your long-term goals can all play a role in determining if purchasing a new home is really in your best interest, so it’s important to give these factors close consideration before making such an important choice. Here are ten questions to ask yourself before buying a new home!

1) Am I Ready?

Am I emotionally prepared for maintenance? Homeownership comes with a significant amount of maintenance. Do you have what it takes to keep up with all of your responsibilities as a homeowner? If not, it may be best to hold off on buying until you feel ready. Mortgage, Do I have enough savings for my down payment and first month’s mortgage payment? A 20% down payment is typically recommended when purchasing a home in order to avoid paying private mortgage insurance (PMI). However, saving up that kind of money can take months, especially if you are also working full-time. If necessary, explore smaller options such as down-payment assistance programs and other types of loans that make homeownership more affordable or realistic within your budget. 

2) Can I Afford It?

Purchasing a new home is never as simple as looking at comparables, crunching some numbers, and taking out a mortgage. There are more questions that you need to ask yourself before signing on any dotted lines. For example, do you have enough insurance? What about furnishing your home with essential appliances? Do you already have a mortgage or loans? What maintenance expenses will there be? Where To Start?: While it’s good to understand what life might look like after buying a new home, getting things lined up beforehand makes it easier when you’re ready to settle down. Having insurance, furniture and electronics means you won’t have anything to buy right away – so now’s a great time to start buying these items second-hand. Your loans should already be paid off, too – in which case, it could just come down to paying off your mortgage on your old house or renting somewhere temporarily until your house hunt is over! Discuss everything with your partner/spouse first though; nothing beats two minds coming together when making big decisions like buying a new home.

3) Is This The Right Neighborhood For Me?

When you decide to buy your first home, it’s important to consider the neighborhood. It may not seem like a big deal when you’re just renting, but as soon as you buy a new home, it becomes a home sweet home. If the area is too much for you, it will significantly dampen your desire to maintain the house and yard. Moving to the right place will be key to your happiness. Do your research and remember that there are many different types of neighborhoods: rural or small-town living; suburban living; city life; urban core living; and various kinds of communities that encompass all these options. Which type of neighborhood do you prefer? 

4) What is my Dream Home?

Now is an exciting time in your life—you’re looking for your first home! When it comes time to find your first home, you may be completely overwhelmed by all of your options. You could go with a new home or a used home. Do you want something bigger or smaller? Will you need new furniture and electronics? Should you get insurance or warranty coverage? If you’re looking at new homes, how do you know what’s a fair price? These are all things that most people don’t think about until they’re already staring down big financial decisions. To make sure that buying your first house is as positive an experience as possible, take some time to make sure you’ve given yourself all of your options ahead of time. What questions should I ask myself before I buy my first home? The most important question on your mind might be: How much can I afford to spend on a house? A lot of people will simply look at their income and multiply it by five. But there are other factors that you’ll want to consider, like whether or not you have any student loans if you have any savings set aside for emergencies, etc.

5) Do I Want To Own Or Rent Long Term?

When it comes to buying a home, you’ll have many important decisions to make. First-time homebuyers often have questions about how homeownership works and what their options are when buying property. To help make your decision easier, ask yourself these 10 questions: Do I want to own or rent long term? If I decide that I do want to own, should I buy or lease my new home? What type of financing will be best for me? Are there co-signer issues that might prevent me from obtaining credit? Should I wait until after my divorce is final before purchasing real estate? Can I afford both the maintenance and insurance costs associated with my new property? How much time can I spend on repairs and maintenance? Will I need to hire contractors or workers to maintain my new home? Will I need to move again in five years? 

6) Should I Sell My Current Home First?

Selling your current home before buying your next one has advantages and disadvantages. On one hand, selling now will allow you to avoid two sets of mortgage payments while you find and move into your new house. However, by staying put, you won’t have any opportunity cost when it comes time to sell—if there’s no better offer for your house, then at least you’re not losing money by taking that deal. There are pros and cons to both options; if either is what interests you most, set up a consultation with an experienced real estate agent as soon as possible. He or she can help walk through all of your available options and narrow down which ones would be best for you moving forward. If I Don’t Sell My Current Home First, How Long Should I Rent?: If you decide to rent until you’re ready to buy, it’s smart to make sure you get in touch with a reliable property manager who can make sure your rental property is being taken care of properly. But how long should you stay? In general, experts recommend renting for no more than six months in total.

7) What Do I Want in A Home?

If you’re going to buy real estate, buying a new property is much different than buying something used. Take your time and really think about what you want and need in a home. Make a list of your must-haves for your new home. For example, if you’re moving from an apartment or rental home, do you need extra storage space? Do you want new appliances or do they not matter as much as other factors? Are there amenities that are important to you like an attached garage? Be honest with yourself so that when it comes time to make decisions, you’re not feeling buyer’s remorse. Also, keep in mind that more expensive homes come with more maintenance needs.  Know what those are before making any final decisions! How Much Can I Afford?: Once you know what you want in a home, figure out how much money you can afford to spend on your mortgage each month. This step may be easier said than done because it requires calculating your monthly income and expenses. Start by creating a spreadsheet with all of your monthly income (including bonuses) and subtracting taxes, insurance premiums, retirement contributions, etc. What’s left over will likely be less than what you were spending on rent each month.

8) Is My Credit Score Good Enough For A Mortgage?

Credit scores are based on several factors, including payment history, debt-to-income ratio, and the amount of credit used. Generally speaking, if you’ve had a credit card for more than two years and have paid it off in full each month for most of that time, you can expect your score to be pretty decent. Loans fall into three main categories: first mortgages (the largest loans); home equity lines of credit (HELOCs), which are loans taken out against your home; and home equity loans (also called second mortgages), which aren’t secured by your house but still serve as good sources of cheap cash. HELOCs generally charge lower interest rates than standard mortgages and you’ll typically pay them back over longer periods of time. If you’re thinking about buying a new home, it’s important to know how important your credit score is. If you’ve never purchased a home before or haven’t done so in many years, there’s no doubt that lenders will check your credit report before issuing a mortgage. However, even borrowers with excellent credit may find themselves rejected when applying for certain types of mortgages due to other factors such as income or down payment size. This is why knowing what lenders look at when making lending decisions is so important. Your credit score is one of the most important factors in determining whether or not you get approved for a loan, but it isn’t necessarily everything. While you should make sure your score is high enough to get approved for a loan, don’t obsess over points—if you apply and get denied once or twice because your scores aren’t quite high enough yet, that’s okay! In fact, getting denied early on can actually help build up your credit. Every time you apply for credit and get turned down, you add another hard inquiry to your report. The more hard inquiries listed there—which stay on your record for two years—the worse off things might seem from an outside perspective (but only from an outside perspective). Keep applying until you find something that works!

9) Where Can I Get The Best Rate On A Mortgage?

Mortgage lenders vary in their mortgage rates. While it’s tempting to go with whoever is offering you the lowest rate, in reality, that may not be your best choice if it comes at too high of an interest rate and/or with unfavorable loan conditions. If you’re not sure where you can get a good rate, ask your real estate agent or mortgage broker for recommendations on local lenders they use frequently. Asking friends who have purchased houses recently can also be a helpful place to start; many will recommend one lender over another due to either low-interest rates or friendly customer service experiences. Check out reviews online for any potential lenders as well—there are plenty of forums and review sites where people discuss experiences with various companies’ mortgage offerings.

10) Will I Have The Right Insurance Coverage?

Home insurance policies are an absolute must for new homeowners. The average home in America is valued at about $200,000—and if you’re on your own or married, that can go up significantly. You need to have enough coverage on your house so that any physical damage is covered (this includes everything from wind damage and fire damage, even vandalism). But that’s not all. You also need to cover losses like liability and theft. Theft covers everything from your furniture being stolen to someone hurting themselves while they’re in your home; it’s another very important aspect of homeowners insurance coverage—and one many first-time buyers often overlook 

How do you protect your investments in your home?  

CYA is here to make sure that your assets work the way they were made to. Cover Your Assets is a monthly warranty program created by the experts at Consumer Priority Service designed to cover your electronic products. CYA covers every kind of electronic product and appliance that you have in your home, apartment, dorm, or business. New cell phone? Old TV? We got you. These warranties include coverage for accidental damage, water damage, and hardware failure. Find out how CYA can protect your stuff at cya.insure.

The Perfect Cup of Coffee for New Home Owners

Did you know the benefits of a good cup of coffee? 

1. Boosts energy levels

2. May be linked to a lower risk of type 2 diabetes

3. Could support brain health

4. May promote weight management

5. Linked to a lower risk of depression

6. Could protect against liver conditions

7. Supports heart health

8. Could increase longevity 

Coffee is a beloved beverage known for its ability to fine-tune your focus and boost your energy levels.

In fact, many people depend on their daily cup of joe right when they wake up to get their day started on the right foot. In addition to its energizing effects, coffee has been linked to a long list of potential health benefits, giving you all the more reason to get brewing.

As a new homeowner, you need to get the right appliances to make your house feel like a home. One of the most important, however, isn’t always considered right away – the coffee maker or coffee brewer. This small appliance can make or break your morning routine and you don’t want to end up regretting your choice when it comes time to brew some joe! Follow this guide to find out how to choose the best coffee brewer for you and your family so you can enjoy that first cup of coffee in your new home! 

Congrats on your new home! 

Now that you have a new place to call your own, there are plenty of choices to make on how you’re going to furnish it. One area where most people spend quite a bit is their kitchen and coffee/tea service. Purchasing an espresso maker can be an overwhelming prospect. In fact, these appliances can be pretty expensive if you aren’t sure what you want (and don’t want) in one. When making your purchase, consider how much time and effort you’re willing to put into making coffee as well as how much money you want to spend on doing so. We’ve got some ideas below that will help you choose between some of today’s most popular options for home brewers. 

If you’re a recent new homeowner and interested in furnishing your kitchen with an espresso maker, it’s best to understand how they work before making a purchase. 

If not, take some time learning about home espresso machines—specifically which ones we chose for our comparison below. 

What do I buy?!

It might seem like there are a million different things you need to buy for your new home, but in reality, the only essential thing is a washer and dryer (thank goodness!). We’ve found that the most budget-friendly options tend to be washing machines. They’re relatively inexpensive, they do the job well enough and they don’t take up too much space either. If you can afford it and you have room in your home for it, by all means, consider a combination washer-dryer unit! It will save time, money, and space. But if you go with a traditional washer-dryer combo, plan on spending around $800-$1,000. Then, depending on how big your family is or how often you entertain guests, there are other appliances to consider buying—either right away or later down the road. For example, while an oven may not be essential at first glance, we’d recommend getting one within six months of moving into a new place so you can cook larger meals and host more people without worrying about having enough countertop space or running out of room in your refrigerator. And while coffee makers aren’t as vital as refrigerators or ovens—they’re still nice to have. Ensure your new appliances are protected with a coverage plan like the ones offered by CPSCENTRAL.COM. Make sure those investments last a long time! 

French Press

If you’re looking for simplicity and a solid cup of coffee, a French press is your best bet. Many brands sell presses that allow you to customize sizes and brew types based on your preferences. And these are small appliances so they won’t take up much counter space in your new home or condo. Once you have an idea of what kind of coffee drinker you are (you like it dark, maybe with a little milk or cream), then check out different options at places like Williams-Sonoma, Sur La Table, and Crate & Barrel. At least one reviewer will likely say he or she makes better coffee with their press than anyone else can make with their Starbucks latte machine! So there’s that too. One last tip—get a grinder if you don’t already have one, because whole beans tend to make for more flavorful cups of joe.

Coffee Grinder: Like French presses, these aren’t necessarily expensive appliances, but they’ll give you total control over how fine or coarse your grinds are and can really improve flavor if you’re making drip coffee at home instead of buying it from Dunkin’ Donuts every morning. Most electric models run around $40-$50 bucks, though high-end ones might cost $100-$200 depending on how fancy you want them to be.

Don’t waste your money on buying coffee outside.

Starbucks and Dunkin’ are 2 of the biggest coffee chains in the US. So it’s no wonder that coffee drinkers are arguing over which offers better quality coffee and service than the other. But buying coffee at big coffee chains like Starbucks or Dunkin’ is a waste of money. Buying a cup of coffee can cost up to $5.00 in some cities. If you bought one a day, that’s $25 per week and $100 per month. That is over $1,000 every year wasted on buying expensive coffee that you can make at home easily and save hundreds of dollars per year! Plus enjoy your favorite blend at any time with no lines or limits on refills so you don’t have to worry about running out when in a rush. Your kitchen countertop is probably where you spend most of your time in during morning hours. It’s great if you live alone, but not everyone does. Many people end up buying separate coffee makers for each family member to avoid conflicts over who gets to use which machine first in the morning. The downside? This costs even more money! The solution? Buy an affordable and efficient coffee maker that allows multiple users without having to buy another unit again.

Pour Over

The Pour Over is a brewer that requires more preparation time than the rest. The extra effort is worth it, though. Pour Overs are inexpensive and can be used with a variety of coffee grinds and filters, making them an attractive option if you’re looking to try new things with your coffee brewing technique. You can find these at any local grocery store, making it easy to pick one up without needing a trip online or over the border. They’re also good for people who want something quick and easy in the morning before they head out the door. Plus, they fit perfectly in your Refridgerator so there’s no need to find room on your countertop or kitchen table—your coffee stays as fresh as possible! These brewers come in many shapes and sizes, but what they all have in common is a glass cone-shaped carafe that sits atop a small stove burner. A paper filter sits inside of it and hot water drips through directly onto your grounds. It takes about five minutes to make two cups of pour-over coffee (one cup per person), which makes it great for those who want their caffeine fix fast! However, because each drip takes about 20 seconds to complete, you won’t want to rush through making your cup of joe.

Syphon

The best coffee brewers allow you to produce an excellent cup of coffee but they also have other functions and abilities. There are different varieties out there so it can be quite overwhelming for a first-time homeowner who doesn’t know where to start. The way you should go about buying your coffee maker depends on what you want from it, what you already have, and how much space you have in your kitchen. The most common types are single or double-barrel Syphon machines which rely on gravity instead of pushing water through as a steam machine does. This results in higher-quality brews with delicate aromas.

Kettle, a little fancy.

Kettle Coffee brewers are coffee brewing tools. These machines are ideal for coffee connoisseurs and people who want to experiment with making their own blends. Kettle Coffee brewers tend to be more expensive than other types, but they offer additional benefits as well. For instance, these brewers allow you to make iced coffee without diluting it; there’s even a setting on some models that can keep hot water in reserve until you’re ready to brew. When shopping for one of these products, look for features like an adjustable thermostat and temperature control in order to ensure optimal brewing. 

Espresso Machine, yes, please! 

Did you know Espressos, in particular, contain antioxidants that boost the immune system? Espresso shots can even reduce the risk of heart disease and stroke, especially for people who are obese. Sounds like an espresso machine isn’t a bad idea. As the name suggests, espresso machines are designed specifically for making espresso-based drinks. These machines have three main components—the group head, the boiler, and the portafilter—all designed in such a way that water heated in the boiler is forced through finely-ground coffee by pressure into a serving vessel (the cup). For home use, a machine like Baratza’s Sette 270 takes care of all these processes automatically. If you’re looking for something more basic, check out Miele’s fully programmable 6-Bar pump-driven home machine. The company is also known for its high-end appliances and has been around since 1899!

Percolator for the older generation.

The percolator’s an old favorite. The original gangster of coffee brewers, the percolator dominated the coffee scene back in the day but has since fallen out of favor. It’s still a huge staple in many homes of the older generation. They aren’t too interested in trying the newer machines. They like to stick to what they know or in if we can use the term, “If it’s not broke, don’t fix it.” With the percolator’s complex heating method, though, it’s a good choice if you’re going for that classic coffee taste. It’s also usually cheaper than other options and easier to clean up after. An easy way to brew coffee using a percolator is to use a press pot instead of regular coffee grounds. All you have to do is add water and let it sit overnight. It may sound gross, but using boiling water speeds up the brewing process and uses less electricity overall.

The decision is yours. 

As a new homeowner, you’ll have plenty on your plate, so don’t let choosing a coffee brewer be another stressful decision. Weigh your options and decide what’s best for you. You may also want to consider adding a coffee grinder or espresso machine if you want to try making your own specialty drinks at home—you can always upgrade later! It all comes down to what matters most. For example, if you plan on brewing a lot of coffee each day, you’ll probably want a bigger model with multiple carafes and advanced features. If not, keep it simple with something smaller that doesn’t take up too much space or cost too much money. 

Protect your investments, and yes a coffee maker is an important one! Along with other all the wonderful things you’ve invested into your home. 

How do you protect your investments for your home?  

CYA is here to make sure that your assets work the way they were made to. Cover Your Assets is a monthly warranty program created by the experts at Consumer Priority Service designed to cover your electronic products. CYA covers every kind of electronic product and appliance that you have in your home, apartment, dorm, or business. New cell phone? Old TV? We got you. These warranties include coverage for accidental damage, water damage, and hardware failure. Find out how CYA can protect your stuff at cya.insure.

What’s the difference between Gen Z and Millenials? Their cell phone usage says it all.

Every generation has been defined by some key differences from the one before it, and Millenials and Gen Z are no different. These two generations of people have shown an interesting evolution in technology usage, with Millenials’ love of cell phones giving way to Gen Z’s increasing preference for social media, instant messaging, and their cell phones’ cameras. Here’s what you need to know about each generation’s cell phone habits and preferences, as well as how they can impact your business if you aren’t paying attention.

Why do we love our smartphones so much?

It’s an age-old question: What is it about smartphones that make us so attached to them? Are we just passing time or are we engaging in a meaningful experience with these devices? Is there something inherently addictive about our mobile phones? Or are they simply a better way to communicate than ever before? Researchers have recently begun exploring these questions, but there is no conclusive evidence to date on why people love their smartphones so much. However, one thing does seem clear: The next generation of smartphone users—Generation Z—seems even more obsessed with their phones than Millennials were at their age. In fact, some research suggests that Generation Z may be spending more time on social media and playing more games on their smartphones than Millennials did at similar ages. So what is it about these new users that seem to make them even more reliant on technology? And how will their habits change as they grow older? Only time will tell. But for now, it’s probably safe to say that we won’t see any decrease in smartphone use anytime soon. With smartphone usage only increasing, let’s try to keep our phones working as long as possible. Check out CPSCENTRAL.COM for all your cell phone protection plans. 

A Day Without Our Smartphones

In our opinion, smartphones are more than just another device to check text messages, browse social media or scroll through your newsfeed. We believe that people use their smartphones as a crutch for many daily activities, in fact — two-thirds of millennials would not be able to last a day without their smartphones (source). This statistic is especially apparent when comparing Generation Z (Gen Z) to Millenials’ use of smartphones – according to an AT&T survey, 83% of 16-19-year-olds wouldn’t be able to go 24 hours without their smartphone as opposed to only 67% of adults age 55+. As you can see, there is a distinct difference in how these generations view smartphones and we think it comes down to one thing: trust. Millennials have been around long enough to witness major security breaches on corporate servers and government databases; therefore they may feel hesitant about putting sensitive information on something that could potentially get hacked into. On the other hand, Gen Z has grown up with technology being around them at every turn; therefore they feel comfortable using technology for almost everything. They don’t question whether or not their data will be secure because they simply assume it will be since everything else in their lives is connected via some sort of digital network.

Technology Stops, We Go On

Smartphones have taken over our lives, there’s no denying that fact. One generation believes they can’t live without them (Millenials) while another believes they are more in control of their technological devices than ever before (Gen Z). However, upon further investigation, you will find that neither is correct—the truth is much simpler than that. Our tendency to check our phones every 20 minutes isn’t going anywhere anytime soon but we can be thankful for one thing: new technology stops working when we need it most! If your smartphone died while you were on your way to an important meeting or if you desperately needed a smartphone app while stuck in traffic – how would you react? The next time you notice yourself reaching for your smartphone to fill a void in your life, consider what might happen if technology stopped working. Would you still feel as dependent on it as you do now? Or would you be okay with just sitting back and enjoying life? You may not realize it yet but Gen Z has figured out something about smartphones that many adults haven’t quite caught onto yet: smartphones don’t make us happy – using them does. Keep being happy with CPSCENTRAL.COM. They will keep your phone working as long as possible. 

Cell Phone Usage In Public Places

A major culture shift is underway in America, but instead of taking decades to materialize, we’re living through it right now: Millennials are abandoning public spaces for internet access at home or in their local Starbucks. And if there were any doubt about how different these two generations are, just look at their cell phone usage; millennials use them in public places more than Gen Zers do (86% vs 72%). Why? Because they’re constantly on guard against looking like a dork; by hiding behind a screen rather than talking to friends or coworkers face-to-face, they can avoid looking silly or unintelligent. The irony here is that it was exactly that fear—of seeming unpopular—that drove them out of their homes and into public places when they were teenagers! It’s not surprising then that many teens from Generation Z are even less likely to be seen using their phones in public than older generations (only 44% admit to doing so). Gen Zers have grown up with smartphones and tablets as an integral part of daily life—they’re used to having constant access to information, entertainment, and social media. As such, they don’t see why anyone would want to waste time staring at a tiny screen when you could be spending time interacting with other people. It’s also worth noting that teens from Generation Z grew up during a period where social media began becoming ubiquitous; as such, many feel uncomfortable being observed while using their devices.

Can You Still Enjoy Life Without One?

I had an iPhone in high school and didn’t use a cell phone for six years. I was able to go about my life without worrying about missing out on important calls or texts. My friends were never worried I wouldn’t get their calls or miss out on opportunities. We hung out face-to-face, talking, laughing, and having fun! Some of those same friends are now always on their cell phones and they feel weird if they aren’t. People think that when you have one, you can’t enjoy yourself without it. But that isn’t true at all! Just because someone doesn’t have a cell phone doesn’t mean they don’t know how to live life; it just means they know how to appreciate things like being with friends instead of trying to take pictures of them every second and post them online for likes or comments. The whole point is: You don’t need a cell phone in order to be happy with your life or be social with other people. In fact, research shows that more than 90% of teens believe living without a cell phone makes life easier and less stressful.

Is There Such Thing As Too Much Screen Time?

Smartphones, tablets, mobile apps…there’s a growing body of research that suggests that today’s adolescents are too attached to their phones and tablets. A survey by Common Sense Media found that 85% of children under 8 use screens for entertainment while 50% say they have used a device in school when they should have been paying attention. For those ages 12-17, those numbers jumped to 87% for entertainment screen time and 71% using screens during class time (source). Based on these statistics, parents might be wondering how much screen time is too much? And perhaps even more importantly: What does excessive smartphone use look like? Is there such a thing as too much screen time for kids or teens? The answer is yes—and no. There isn’t one right amount of screen time for everyone because what matters most isn’t how much time you spend with your devices but what you do with them. In other words, quality matters just as much as quantity. Here are some tips to help you make sure your kids aren’t spending too much time staring at screens: 1) Set limits and boundaries. When you give your child a choice about whether or not he wants to use his tablet or smartphone, it can give him ownership over his tech habits and encourage him to set his own limits about what he chooses to do with his devices.

How to take a break from using your Smartphone?

The first step is to admit you have a problem. For many of us, that’s the hardest part. Many of us are deeply attached to our phones: we wake up with them, fall asleep with them, and spend the majority of the day using them. You might think you don’t have a problem because you don’t check your phone every five minutes—but over time, those few minutes add up to hours spent scrolling through Instagram. The solution is simple: disengage from your smartphone throughout the week. Take a break for at least one hour each day. Don’t worry about how much time you spend on your phone; just commit to taking breaks throughout the week so you can get back in touch with reality. The more frequently you take breaks, the easier it will be to maintain healthy habits in general. Plus, when people ask what’s wrong when they see that pained look on your face as you scroll through Instagram, tell them nothing! I was just checking my email!

Take care of your Smartphone. 

Cell phones are inextricably woven into our culture, thanks to their portability, accessibility, and ability to keep us connected with friends and family while on the go. Unlike traditional landlines that can only be used when you’re home or at work, smartphones give us access to instant communication around the clock. So what happens if your smartphone is damaged by a fall, water damage, or even theft? Fortunately, there are many steps you can take to protect your investment and minimize any losses should something go wrong. First off, don’t let your smartphone run out of battery life before putting it away for safekeeping—you may think that charging overnight is a good idea but studies show that charging your phone for extended periods of time could actually shorten its lifespan. If you’re not going to use your smartphone for an extended period of time (like overnight), turn off its power completely by plugging it into a power source instead of leaving it plugged in so that it continues to charge. Another way to take care of your Smartphone investment is to purchase a Warranty Protection plan. CPSCENTRAL.COM has a variety of warranty plans that can help keep your Smartphone running for as long as we can. 

Let’s Get Back To Life

Life is a lot more fun when we learn to let go of our cell phones. Using devices like Kindles, iPads, Samsung Galaxies, or the latest model of the iPhone doesn’t need to be a time suck. Life isn’t going anywhere. In fact, these tools are supposed to make us smarter, more productive people – not take our attention away from real life. So why don’t you take your kids for a walk today without checking your Snapchat notifications on your iPhone? Get back to life! We have been told by social media sites that we can use them whenever and wherever we want, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. There was a time when people actually talked to each other face-to-face; a time before Netflix made movie night at home more convenient than ever; and yes, even before selfies were invented. These distractions may seem harmless enough but overuse can lead to many detrimental effects: loss of productivity at work (or school), lack of sleep, social anxiety disorders…the list goes on. The bottom line is that cell phones are great tools but they shouldn’t take up all of our lives. Don’t get me wrong, I love my iPhone as much as anyone else does—but I also know how to turn it off every once in a while. The next time you’re tempted to check your Snapchat notifications while out with friends or family, just remember what life was like before cell phones existed – and then ask yourself if using one right now will really improve your quality of life. Chances are good that if you really think about it, there will be plenty of things in your day worth being distracted from – whether they’re real-life experiences or cell phone apps! It’s time to take a step back and reconnect with reality. If we don’t give ourselves some space from technology, no one else will do it for us. No one likes reading a book on an iPad better than holding an actual paper book in their hands, watching a movie projected onto a big screen TV better than watching it on their iPhone 6s Plus in bed, or talking to someone face-to-face better than talking to them through FaceTime. Let’s get back to life! After all, what would happen if everyone decided that cell phones didn’t matter anymore? No texting at red lights. No taking pictures during dinner parties instead of enjoying conversations with those around you. It would be an interesting experiment indeed…and probably pretty refreshing too!

How do you protect your investments for your home? 

CYA is here to make sure that your assets work the way they were made to. Cover Your Assets is a monthly warranty program created by the experts at Consumer Priority Service designed to cover your electronic products. CYA covers every kind of electronic product and appliance that you have in your home, apartment, dorm, or business. New cell phone? Old TV? We got you. These warranties include coverage for accidental damage, water damage, and hardware failure. Find out how CYA can protect your stuff at cya.insure.

Get in Shape at Home: The Best Gym Equipment for Your Home

The best way to stick with your exercise routine and maintain your fitness level, no matter what the season, is to have access to quality gym equipment at home. That way, you can be sure that no matter how cold or snowy it gets outside (or inside!), you’ll still have time to work out and stay in shape throughout the year. For those of us who have large spaces dedicated to physical fitness and recreation, having our own home gym makes staying fit easy and convenient; we don’t even need to wear shoes! 

Going to the Gym VS a Home Gym

Many people prefer to work out at home, but some don’t realize just how many amazing benefits there are to an at-home gym. It can be less intimidating than a commercial gym and you’ll have it whenever you want. No more long hours driving, plus you don’t have to worry about someone judging your form or being too crowded. If that sounds appealing, keep reading to learn about some of the best equipment out there for getting in shape at home. You might be surprised by what kinds of great items can be found on Amazon! For example, if you purchase home gym equipment, such as resistance bands or weights, then you can easily customize your workouts. With all these different options available to you at home, there is no excuse not to exercise. So take advantage of all these benefits and get started today! Just make sure to talk with your doctor before starting any new exercise routine. This will help ensure that you don’t injure yourself while working out. Also, make sure to stock up on home workout essentials like fitness clothes and shoes. These small details can make a big difference when it comes to building a home gym!

Picking out a treadmill

When you decide to start working out, there are a few pieces of equipment that are staples. If you want to exercise in your home, consider investing in a treadmill. While treadmills can be found at many gyms and fitness centers, they’re also available for purchase through sporting goods retailers and online stores. When choosing a treadmill, keep these considerations in mind: cost, size, and features. Most home treadmills range from $500 to $1,000 but pricier models with more advanced features are available as well. Make sure that any treadmill you buy is large enough for your height and weight—it should have an ample cushioning system (to avoid pressure on joints) and will hold up against continuous use over time. Most treadmills offer an array of preset programs or let users create their own workouts—they may also have wireless heart rate monitors or Bluetooth capability so users can connect with fitness apps on their smartphones or tablets. For safety reasons, make sure any treadmill you buy has slip-resistant decks or rubber footings—this will help prevent injuries if a user loses his/her footing while exercising.

Pull Up Bar for your home

While traditional gyms have their advantages, you may not have time to make it there. With that in mind, your home is an excellent place to work out and stay fit. Home gyms are now common, with many homes finding room for them; others need small space-saving equipment to meet their needs. A simple pull-up bar attached to a doorway will allow you to do dozens of exercises – pulling up on doorways is not just limited to chin-ups! To pick out what’s best for your home gym, consider your budget and how often you plan on using it; then buy based on quality over price. 

At-home workout programs

Did you know home workout programs are extremely popular and offer a variety of options to help you get fit from home? They typically contain DVDs or streaming videos demonstrating exercise routines, detailed fitness plans, and diet guidelines—everything you need to get started working out on your own. Many feature high-profile celebrities or trainers as instructors so working out at home has never been easier or more fun! Look for programs that come with all the equipment you need so nothing holds you back from getting in shape at home quickly and easily. Most programs also include nutrition guides containing useful information about food preparation, portion sizes, and healthy recipes so if weight loss is one of your goals they can be invaluable tools.

Choosing a spin bike for your home. 

When buying gym equipment for your home, you want to make sure that it’s safe and durable. A spin bike is a good choice because it’s low-impact, meaning you can use it every day if you want (though make sure to consult with your doctor before starting a new exercise routine). It’s important to choose a bike that fits well in your home; bikes come in multiple sizes and can range from under $200 to well over $1,000. If you’re just getting started on an exercise regimen, aim for an affordable model so that if money is tight, or if you decide after a few months that exercising isn’t your thing, you aren’t stuck with a bunch of unnecessary equipment. Otherwise, think about how much room you have available and what other equipment might be appropriate for your home gym. For example, a recumbent bike will take up less space than a regular spin bike but still provide some of the same benefits. And if space is no issue at all, consider buying two or three different types of exercise equipment—not only will it give you more variety during workouts but it’ll also allow you to work out different muscle groups throughout the week. Remember that working out should be fun! Choose exercise gear that helps motivate you rather than frustrate or bore you—you’ll be more likely to stick with an exercise plan when doing something fun and exciting instead of tedious and boring. 

Finding the best yoga mat for you

What makes the best yoga mat for your home? There are a few things to keep in mind. First, you’ll want to invest in something made with high-quality material and a design that’s best suited for your level of practice. Second, pick one that won’t become a tripping hazard—especially if you live with roommates. Finally, make sure it has some cushioning to help protect your joints and ensure comfort during long practice sessions. If you have questions about which type of yoga mat is best for your home or needs, be sure to check out our comparison guide. It’s full of easy-to-understand information and everything you need to know when shopping for your next yoga mat.

What about a Stairmaster for your home?

Using a Stairmaster at home is an excellent idea. It’s one of those home workout tools that help you burn lots of calories, get your heart rate up, and strengthen your muscles. If you’re going to purchase a Stairmaster as part of a home gym, you should think about buying one that has some kind of incline setting; it will make all that time on the machine more effective and challenging—which is what you want! A gym Stairmaster isn’t necessary if you have access to outside stairs or if there are stairs in your apartment building. But if you live in an apartment complex without nearby stairs, buy a treadmill instead. Or consider purchasing both types of exercise equipment—you can use them interchangeably! For example, if you go shopping online, treadmills often cost less than $1,000 while a good Stairmaster can run over $2,000. Plus they require very little space (most are just 6 inches deep) so they’re great for apartments or homes with limited square footage. There’s no better way to start strengthening your body from head to toe than with a good workout routine at home!

How to purchase weights

There are plenty of brands for at-home weights and dumbbells, and that’s one of the best parts about them. You can find many options that you like, and find what works best for your home gym. Some options are Bowflex and Body Solid, two manufacturers you may have heard of or seen before. Both offer durable designs that provide a solid weightlifting experience. Many people looking to purchase weights will likely be very happy with either brand. This is just an example; there are many more out there to consider when purchasing a set of weights. And remember to use Amazon as your go-to source! Keep in mind, also, that weights aren’t everything–there are plenty of other great pieces of equipment you can get for your home gym. For example, consider resistance bands – they’re portable and cost-effective (often costing less than $10 per band), and they’re great for stretching muscles. Exercise balls are another good option, providing core strength training while improving balance. Kettlebells can help develop upper body strength while helping to burn fat – not bad for a single piece of equipment! If you want something even simpler than all that, then check out elastic exercise straps. They work well with many different exercises, including chest presses, lat pulldowns, and leg curls. So if home gyms sound appealing but getting started seems intimidating – don’t worry!

What about Kettlebells for at-home workouts? 

Kettlebells are one of the best pieces of gym equipment to help you get a great workout from home. Kettlebells are relatively cheap and easy to store, so it’s easy to fit your workouts into any schedule. If you’re looking for a total body workout that will challenge your cardio as well as build muscle at home, kettlebells are for you. So what about kettlebell workouts? Kettlebell workouts aren’t just for men looking to get a buff upper body; they help target all parts of your body, which is why they’re so popular with athletes, especially those looking for speed and agility improvements. They can also help improve your posture because they require great balance and coordination while strengthening multiple muscles. 

Tonal, Mirror Project, Bowflex, and more.

Home gyms aren’t just for bodybuilders. Any new homeowner or homeowner can benefit from having a piece of exercise equipment (or several) on hand, even if you don’t have a lot of space. Tonal, Mirror Project, Bowflex, and other home gym systems can give you access to a huge range of exercise routines right out of your house. No more long commutes to and from expensive fitness centers—not to mention awkward trips back and forth between machines or time spent waiting on equipment at gyms. You can see benefits with your new home gym almost immediately as soon as you start incorporating them into your daily routine.

Gym Membership VS At Home Gym

Although joining a gym can be convenient and cost-effective, you may find that it’s just not for you. Working out from home allows you to save time and energy, both of which are better spent elsewhere. If you’re not sure whether to purchase gym equipment or join a gym, ask yourself why you want to get into shape. Is it for your health? To feel stronger? To boost your confidence? There’s no one-size-fits-all approach to staying active—so what works for someone else might not work for you. Figure out your needs and only then decide between a membership or home gym equipment.

Benefits of Investing in a Warranty Protection Plan for your At-home Gym.

If you are going to invest a large amount of money in fitness equipment, you might want to consider getting an extended warranty protection plan. These plans will cover repairs and replacements if there is something wrong with your gym equipment that prevents it from being used. You also get additional support for installation and training. If something does go wrong with your home gym, you don’t have to spend a lot of time researching or buying parts because it can all be done by the people who make your warranty protection plan. 

How do you protect your investments for your home? 

CYA is here to make sure that your assets work the way they were made to. Cover Your Assets is a monthly warranty program created by the experts at Consumer Priority Service designed to cover your electronic products. CYA covers every kind of electronic product and appliance that you have in your home, apartment, dorm, or business. New cell phone? Old TV? We got you. These warranties include coverage for accidental damage, water damage, and hardware failure. Find out how CYA can protect your stuff at cya.insure.

Cable TV vs. Streaming Services: The Battle for Your TV

Unbelievably, cable companies are still trying to convince us that they’re worth the money, but people aren’t buying them anymore. Today, you can sign up for Internet-only streaming services such as Netflix and Hulu and still get all of your favorite TV shows and movies. These streaming services provide on-demand entertainment with quality picture and sound for much less than you’d pay for cable TV every month, with more channels than you can count on one hand. Today, more and more people are cutting the cord to watch their favorite shows via streaming services like Netflix or HBO Now. 

Netflix

Founded in 1997, Netflix is a classic example of disruptive innovation, changing industry standards and expectations through digital distribution methods. It started out as a DVD-rental service that used mail delivery to customers before adding streaming services years later. In 2007, when it was just starting to develop its streaming business, Netflix considered buying Hulu but decided not to do so after finding that its costs would outweigh potential benefits (Netflix’s CEO has said he regrets losing out on an opportunity). A few years later, however, it realized how important video streaming could be and jumped into that space with both feet by producing original content that propelled Netflix into a new arena as well as helping legitimize streaming video as an entertainment medium in general.

Hulu

If you’re looking to cut cable and don’t have a lot of money to spend, Hulu is an excellent streaming service option. With 60 million monthly users and more than 90% of millennials reporting that they use Hulu, it’s definitely one of your best options out there. Compared to Netflix, Hulu has a more narrowly tailored selection of movies, but since it’s offering them all at once on its app rather than one episode at a time through mail or streaming services like Netflix (another advantage—there are no advertisements), Hulu offers more bang for your buck in terms of quantity per hour spent watching. Plus, Hulu has exclusive deals with many cable networks so you can watch episodes from shows such as The Bachelor before they air on TV. Hulu also has deals with Showtime and Starz so you can watch new releases from those channels too.

Amazon Prime Video

If you’re a frequent Amazon shopper, then it’s worth giving Amazon Prime Video a try—even if you don’t intend to be an Amazon Prime member (which, we’ll talk about below). The video streaming service offers thousands of movies and TV shows that you can watch at no additional cost by signing in with your existing Amazon account information. As of early 2017, there were more than 2 million titles available in total on Amazon Prime Video as well as 2 million titles available on Netflix in addition to what’s available on HBO Now, Showtime Anytime, and CBS All Access. Watch whatever you want, whenever you want—so long as it’s accessible via one of those three channels! Amazon Prime members get access to all of their content without ads or commercials. This is true even if you subscribe only to Amazon’s standalone video streaming service and not its annual membership program, which grants access to other benefits like free two-day shipping on eligible purchases and exclusive discounts on certain items. Plus, Amazon packages all of its videos in high definition using its proprietary Dolby Digital Plus 5.1 surround sound audio technology so they look better than any other subscription-based streaming service out there.

HBO MAX

Streaming services like Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon have changed how we consume entertainment by eliminating our need to hunt down shows in a weekly or monthly block of time and watching them on our own schedule. These services are much more flexible than cable TV, which requires you to pay upfront for a block of programming that could contain dozens of hours worth of content. However, as streaming services continue to grow in popularity—particularly among younger generations—cable companies have begun offering streaming packages with skinny bundles at lower prices. HBO Max is one such service that offers its users access to live TV channels and on-demand content without any ads (similar to what’s offered by cable). While these streaming packages may be cheaper than traditional cable plans, they’re not necessarily better value for money if you only watch a few specific channels.

Disney Plus

What Disney’s streaming service means for your streaming habits, Disney Plus, which launched in late 2019, has a lot of people watching—both kids and adults alike. If you’re looking to cut your cable or satellite bill in favor of a cheaper, more convenient streaming option, it might not be worth dropping all your subscriptions just yet. Since you’ll be saving some extra cash for switching to streaming from cable, some of that excess money should be invested into protecting your streaming devices. Check out CPSCENTRAL.COM for all of your streaming device protection plans. 

Who is streaming? 

According to a recent Nielsen report, nearly half of Americans (48%) say they’ve used an internet-delivered video service such as Netflix or Hulu within a week of being asked, while just 38% said they had done so in 2014. Additionally, more than one-quarter (27%) said they have streamed a movie or television show using a digital subscription service like Amazon Prime Video or CBS All Access within that same time frame — up from 16% two years ago. What does all of that mean? As streaming services continue to grow in popularity, so too will live TV services that deliver customers access to dozens of networks and channels without forcing them to sign up for pricey cable packages (and lousy customer service).

Cable TV

Cable is a high-cost investment and your bill will only go up when you have to pay for new channels, hardware and Internet. But you can still get great shows like Game of Thrones and live sports with it. If all you need is access to cable programming, there are plenty of streaming services that let you watch Live TV over your computer, smartphone or tablet with apps like WatchESPN, Fox Sports Go or SlingTV (which has CBS). Getting rid of cable isn’t as simple as just signing up for one service; use these resources to help make an informed decision about how best to do it depending on what’s important to you. In many cases, combining both options could save you money in the long run.

2 Ways to Save Money On Cable TV 1) Cut back on premium channels: Most people don’t need HBO and Showtime – which typically cost $15 each per month – but they’re easy to add through online accounts or via your cable box remote. 2) Switch providers: Depending on where you live, switching providers might be easier than expected. Start by calling customer service at your current provider if you want more details about available deals. Cable isn’t the only investment that you should make for your home. Investing in a protection plan for your TVs, Laptops, or whatever device you may use to watch your shows, is important as well. Let CPSCENTRAL.COM help you find the best coverage options to keep your devices running smoothly. 

Millennials and the Streaming Era

Millennials, or Generation Y, were born between 1980 and 1995. They are less likely to subscribe to cable, are tech-savvy, and are always on the hunt for better services at lower prices. Their spending power is also increasing year after year due to steady employment rates and salary growth across most industries. Experts estimated that they would account for $200 billion in annual retail sales by 2020! This means that companies need to take notice of what Millennials want and make changes accordingly if they hope to stay relevant in today’s marketplace—and no one knows their wants better than streaming services like Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime Video, and more!

Baby Boomers and Streaming

Baby boomers are among the most devoted cable television viewers in the country. And, as streaming services become more commonplace and competition heats up, it seems that these older generations may stick with what they know over making a change to something unfamiliar or new. During their youth, there were many channels that needed broadcasting space, including news stations and educational broadcasts on how to create cars and make electricity safer–why would they need cable? They remember their time before the advent of YouTube when watching television meant buying a series of shows on VHS tapes or renting your favorite flick from Blockbuster Video. As you can see, baby boomers have been around long enough to experience changes in technology firsthand and have seen them happen slowly over time. In fact, they’ve been able to watch younger generations go through similar changes during their lifetimes—and now they’re seeing yet another one with streaming services like Netflix and Hulu. This makes them far less likely than other age groups to try out a new service like Netflix because if it didn’t exist when they were young adults, why should they bother trying it now? If you’re part of Generation X or younger, you might think that all older people love Netflix—but not so fast!

Streaming Quick Facts

According to a report from Experian Marketing Services, Streaming services will have captured 40% of TV-watching households by 2019, up from around 25% today. That doesn’t mean cable companies are done for—far from it. But that does mean it’s time to get serious about going digital and start exploring streaming services in 2015. One service that works particularly well with laptops and Macs is DirecTV Now, an Internet-based subscription service that lets you stream dozens of channels live directly on your computer or mobile device (and not just Windows-based computers). Best of all, you can try DirecTV Now free for 7 days by clicking here! If you like what you see, simply enter your credit card information when prompted at signup. You won’t be charged until after seven days, but there’s no penalty if you cancel before then. Note: Streaming services aren’t right for everyone. If watching sports is important to you and/or streaming isn’t available in your area yet, consider keeping cable instead. You’ll also want to make sure any streaming service has plenty of apps available across different platforms (including Roku, Apple TV and Android), so that even if someone else wants to watch something else they can easily do so using their own account login info.

How long will Cable tv last?

Cable has had its run, and now we are beginning to see it come to an end. Cable television is slowly being edged out by a new technology – streaming services. These entertainment options have been around for a while, but they’re gaining in popularity quickly as people seek cheaper alternatives to expensive cable packages that aren’t inclusive of live TV anyway. How much longer will cable last? Read on to find out… 

Streaming services give you thousands of shows with just one subscription, while still allowing you to view all your favorite shows on live TV through apps like SlingTV or PlayStation Vue. It really doesn’t matter what kind of shows you’re into – there’s something for everyone! You can stream live sports events like baseball games or basketball games without paying anything extra either. If you want something other than sports, there’s always news channels such as Fox News and MSNBC or perhaps even breaking networks like HLN for those who love their true crime stories! Live news isn’t exactly hard to get if you have cable tv either – many providers offer free news channels with their basic package.

To Stream or Not to Stream

That is no longer a question as most people use streaming services over cable TV in America and around the globe. Even though there are still plenty of ways to watch traditional cable, more than 50% of all households with a television pay for a video service—of those homes, 37% have only internet and never access traditional programming (Nielsen 2016). This trend isn’t going away anytime soon because technology keeps making it easier and more convenient to stream content from anywhere you want. Now is an excellent time to find out how much you can save by switching your household from cable TV to streaming services like Netflix, Hulu or SlingTV. Chances are you may be surprised by just how much that number has dropped! So, before you decide on cutting ties with cable once and for all, here’s what you need to know about streaming services vs. 

How do you protect your investments for your home? 

CYA is here to make sure that your assets work the way they were made to. Cover Your Assets is a monthly warranty program created by the experts at Consumer Priority Service designed to cover your electronic products. CYA covers every kind of electronic product and appliance that you have in your home, apartment, dorm, or business. New cell phone? Old TV? We got you. These warranties include coverage for accidental damage, water damage, and hardware failure. Find out how CYA can protect your stuff at cya.insure.