Having health insurance makes it possible to receive medical care while only paying a fraction of that careâs true cost. Insurance doesnât cover everything, however. Some of the cost of your care is still up to you to pay, and that cost comes in two primary forms: copays and coinsurance.
What Is a Copay?
A copay is a flat amount of money that youâre responsible for paying for a health care service. Copays typically apply for things like a doctorâs appointment, prescription drug or medical test. The amount of your copay is dependent on your specific health insurance plan.
You can typically expect to pay your copay when you check in for your service, be it an annual physical, dental cleaning or blood test. Copays are typically lower amounts ranging from $10 for something like a generic drug prescription to around $65 for a visit to a medical specialist.
Depending on your insurance plan, copays may not take effect until after you reach your deductible. Your deductible is the amount of money you must pay out-of-pocket before your insurance provider starts to pitch in. Deductibles reset at the beginning of every year.
When you are reviewing your plan information and you see the phrase âafter deductibleâ or âdeductible appliesâ in reference to your copays, thatâs an indication that the copay is only in place once you meet your deductible. On the other hand, if you see âdeductible waived,â thatâs a sign that your copay is in place from the beginning. It may go without saying, but the latter situation is vastly preferable to you.
What Is Coinsurance?
Coinsurance is another method of splitting the cost of medical coverage with your insurance plan. A coinsurance is a percentage of the cost of services. You pay the percentage, and your insurance company foots the rest of the bill. So, if you have a $8,000 medical bill and a 20% coinsurance, you would be on the hook for $1,600.
Coinsurance typically only comes into play after you hit your deductible. Further, you may have differing coinsurance percentages for the same services depending on your provider network. If you have a preferred provider organization (PPO) plan, your coinsurance could be a higher percentage for providers outside your network than it is for providers in your network.
Similarly, your coinsurance may not apply to providers outside your network if you have a health maintenance organization (HMO) plan or an exclusive provider organization (EPO) plan. Thatâs because these plans typically donât provide any out-of-network coverage.
Copay vs. Coinsurance
Copay and coinsurance are very similar terms. They both have to do with portions of the cost of your health care thatâs under your responsibility. Because of that, and their similar names, itâs easy to confuse the two. There are a couple of important distinctions to keep in mind, however.
The most notable difference between copays and coinsurance is that copays are always a flat amount and coinsurance is always a percentage of the cost of the service. Another difference is that some copays can be in place before you hit your deductible, depending on the specifics of your plan. With coinsurance, you have to hit your deductible first.
If youâre choosing between health insurance plans, make sure to examine the provided copays and coinsurance for each option. While they may not be the most important factor to consider, a high copay can be quite a pain, especially over the course of years of appointments and procedures.
Tips for Staying on Top of Medical Expenses
One of the best ways to stay ahead of surprise medical expenses is to have an emergency fund in place for just such a situation. If you can manage it, have three to six months worth of expenses stashed away in a high-yield savings account. That way, if youâre dealing with medical bills or have to step away from work, youâll have a bit of a cushion.
If youâre not sure how an unexpected medical expenses would fit into your finances, consider working with a financial advisor to develop a financial plan. Finding the right financial advisor that fits your needs doesnât have to be hard. SmartAssetâs free tool matches you with financial advisors in your area in 5 minutes. If youâre ready to be matched with local advisors that will help you achieve your financial goals, get started now.
Itâs pretty hard to argue against having more money in the bank.
But what are you saving for? If you donât have solid financial goals, all those hoarded pennies might end up in limbo when they could be put to good use.
Figuring out where your money should go might seem daunting, but itâs actually a lot of fun.
You get to analyze your own priorities and decide exactly what to do with your hard-earned cash.
But to make the most of your money, follow a few best practices while setting your goals.
After all, even if something seems like exactly what you want right now, it might not be in future-youâs best interest. And youâre playing the long gameâ¦ thatâs why theyâre called goals!
What to Do Before You Start Writing Your Financial Goals
To help keep you from financial goals like âbuy the coolest toys and cars,â which could easily get you deeply into debt while you watch your credit score plummet, weâve compiled this guide.
Itâll help you set goals and create smart priorities for your money. That way, however you decide to spend your truly discretionary income, you wonât leave the 10-years-from-now version of you in the lurch.
First Thingâs First: How Much Money Do You Have?
You canât decide on your short- or long-term financial goals if you donât know how much money you have or where itâs going.
And if youâre operating without a budget, it can be easy to run out of money well before you run out of expenses â even if you know exactly how much is in your paycheck.
So sit down and take a good, hard look at all of your financial info.
A ton of great digital apps can help you do this â here are our favorite budgeting apps â but it can be as simple as a spreadsheet or even a good, old-fashioned piece of paper. It just takes two steps:
Figure out how much money you have. It might be in checking or savings accounts, including long-term accounts like IRAs. Or, it might be wrapped up in investments or physical assets, like your paid-off car.
Assess any debts you have. Do you keep a revolving credit card balance? Do you pay a mortgage each month? Are your student loans still hanging around?
Take the full amount of money you owe and subtract it from the total amount you have, which you discovered in step one. The difference between the two is your net worth. Thatâs the total amount of money you have to your name.
If it seems like a lot, cool. Hang tight and donât let it burn a hole in your pocket. Weâre not done yet.
If it seems likeâ¦ not a lot, well, you can fix that. Keep reading.
Create a Budget
Once youâve learned your net worth, you need to start thinking about a working budget.
This will essentially be a document with your total monthly income at the top and a list of all the expenses you need to pay for every month.
And I do mean all of the expenses â even that $4.99 recurring monthly payment for your student-discounted Spotify account definitely counts.
Your expenses probably include rent, electricity, cable or internet, a cell phone plan, various insurance policies, groceries, gas and transportation. It also includes categories like charitable giving, entertainment and travel.
Print out the last two or three months of statements from your credit and debit cards and categorize every expense. You can often find ways to save by discovering patterns in your spending habits.
Itâll depend on your individual case â for instance, I totally have âwineâ as a budget line item.
See? Itâs all about priorities.
Need to go back to basics? Hereâs our guide on how to budget.
Start by listing how much you actually spent in each category last month. Subtract your total expenses from your total income. The difference should be equal to the amount of money left sitting in your bank account at monthâs end.
Itâs also the money you can use toward your long-term financial goals.
Want the number to be bigger? Go back through your budget and figure out where you can afford to make cuts. Maybe you can ditch the cable bill and decide between Netflix or Hulu, or replace a takeout lunch with a packed one.
You donât need to abandon the idea of having a life (and enjoying it), but there are ways to make budgetary adjustments that work for you.
Set the numbers youâre willing to spend in each category, and stick to them.
Congratulations. Youâre in control of your money.
Now you can figure out exactly what you want to do with it.
Setting Financial Goals
Before you run off to the cool-expensive-stuff store, hold on a second.
Your financial goals should be (mostly) in this order:
Build an emergency fund.
Pay down debt.
Plan for retirement.
Set short-term and long-term financial goals.
We say âmostlyâ because itâs ultimately up to you to decide in which order you want to accomplish them.
Many experts suggest making sure you have an emergency fund in place before aggressively going after your debt.
But if youâre hemorrhaging money on sky-high interest charges, you might not have much expendable cash to put toward savings.
That means youâll pay the interest for a lot longer â and pay a lot more of it â if you wait to pay it down until you have a solid emergency fund saved up.
1. Build an Emergency Fund
Finding money to sock away each month can be tough, but just starting with $10 or $25 of each paycheck can help.
You can make the process a lot easier by automating your savings. Or you can have money from each paycheck automatically sent to a separate account you wonât touch.
You also get to decide the size of your emergency fund, but a good rule of thumb is to accumulate three to six times the total of your monthly living expenses. Good thing your budget is already set up so you know exactly what that number is, right?
You might try to get away with a smaller emergency fund â even $1,000 is a better cushion than nothing. But if you lose your job, you still need to be able to eat and make rent.
2. Pay Down Debt
Now, letâs move on to repaying debt. Whyâs it so important, anyway?
Because youâre wasting money on interest charges you could be applying toward your goals instead.
So even though becoming debt-free seems like a big sacrifice right now, youâre doing yourself a huge financial favor in the long run.
Thereâs lots of great information out there about how to pay off debt, but itâs really a pretty simple operation: You need to put every single penny you can spare toward your debts until they disappear.
One method is known as the debt avalanche method, which involves paying off debt with the highest interest rates first, thereby reducing the overall amount youâll shell out for interest.
For example, if you have a $1,500 revolving balance on a credit card with a 20% APR, it gets priority over your $14,000, 5%-interest car loan â even though the second number is so much bigger.
If youâre motivated by quick wins, the debt snowball method may be a good fit for you. It involves paying off one loan balance at a time, starting with the smallest balance first.
Make a list of your debts and (ideally) donât spend any of your spare money on anything but paying them off until the number after every account reads â$0.â Trust me, the day when you become debt-free will be well worth the effort.
As a bonus, if your credit score could be better, repaying revolving debt will also help you repair it â just in case some of your goals (like buying a home) depend upon your credit report not sucking.
3. Plan for Retirement
All right, youâre all set in case of an emergency and youâre living debt-free.
Congratulations! Weâre almost done with the hard part, I promise.
But thereâs one more very important long-term financial goal you most definitely want to keep in mind: retirement.
Did you know almost half of Americans have absolutely nothing saved so they can one day clock out for the very last time?
And the trouble isnât brand-new: Weâve been bad enough at saving for retirement over the past few decades that millions of todayâs seniors canât afford to retire.
If you ever want to stop working, you need to save up the money youâll use for your living expenses.
And you need to start now, while compound interest is still on your side. The younger you are, the more time you have to watch those pennies grow, but donât fret if you got a late start â hereâs how to save for retirement in your 20s, 30s, 40s and 50s.
If your job offers a 401(k) plan, take advantage of it â especially if your employer will match your contributions! Trust me, the sting of losing a percentage of your paycheck will hurt way less than having to work into your golden years.
Ideally, youâll want to find other ways to save for retirement, too. Look into individual retirement arrangements (IRAs) and figure out how much you need to contribute to meet your retirement goals.
Future you will thank you. Heartily. From a hammock.
FROM THE BUDGETING FORUM
Starting a budget
A reminder NOT to spend.
Grocery Shopping – How far away is your usual store?
See more in Budgeting or ask a money question
4. Set Short-Term and Long-Term Financial Goals (the Fun Part!)
Is everything in order? Amazing!
Youâre in awesome financial shape â and youâve made it to the fun part of this post.
Consider the funds you have left â and those youâll continue to earn â after taking care of all the financial goals above. Now think: What do you want to do with your money?
What experiences or things can your money buy to significantly increase your quality of life and happiness?
You might plan to travel more, take time off work to spend with family or drive the hottest new Porsche.
Maybe you want to have a six-course meal at the finest restaurant in the world or work your way through an extensive list of exotic and expensive wines. (OK, Iâll stop projecting.)
No matter your goals, itâs helpful to categorize them by how long theyâll take to save for.
Make a list of the goals you want to achieve with your money and which category they fall into. Then you can figure out how to prioritize your savings for each objective.
For example, some of my goals have included:
Short-term financial goal: Save spending money for a trip overseas.
Medium-term financial goal: Pay off my car within a year, or sell it â and its onerous loan â and buy an older car I can own free and clear.
Long-term financial goal: Buy a house I can use as a home base and increase my income by renting it out while I travel. This will probably take me through the rest of my 20s.
By writing down my short- and long-term financial goals and approximately how long I expect it will take to achieve each, I can figure out what to research and how aggressively I need to plan for each goal.
It also offers me the opportunity to see what I prioritize â and to revise those priorities if I see fit.
Jamie Cattanach (@jamiecattanach) is a contributor to The Penny Hoarder.
This was originally published on The Penny Hoarder, which helps millions of readers worldwide earn and save money by sharing unique job opportunities, personal stories, freebies and more. The Inc. 5000 ranked The Penny Hoarder as the fastest-growing private media company in the U.S. in 2017.
As if fearing the health-related consequences of the COVID-19 coronavirus wasn’t enough, there’s also a fair amount of financial uncertainty related to recession and an unstable economy. People all across the United States are wondering how they’ll pay their bills and make ends meet as they file for unemployment and wait for a one-time stimulus check that may not cover the bills.
It’s unfortunate, but some bad actors will always take advantage of situations like coronavirus. In addition to everything else, individuals also need to be on the lookout for COVID-19 scams that are cropping up. In fact, there are so many coronavirus scams out there right now that the FTC created an FTC Scam Bingo game to try and spread the word.
Read up on what COVID-19 scams to look out for and how you can protect yourself and your finances.
COVID-19 Stimulus Check Scams
Some scammers are tricking people into thinking they need to provide personal information to obtain their government relief check. Consumers do not need to sign up for the federal stimulus checks. The government plans to distribute them based on consumersâ 2018 or 2019 federal tax returns starting April 2020. Keep in mind that the IRS does not initiate contact by email, text, or social media.
How to Protect Yourself
Do not respond to any correspondence claiming to be the IRS or other branch of the government requesting personal information in exchange for access to your stimulus check. For accurate information about the federal relief checks and when you can expect yours, visit the IRS’s coronavirus resource.
Student Loan Scams
Americans owe over $1.64 trillion in student loan debt, so itâs no wonder that scammers are preying on this financially vulnerable population. Watch out for offers to forgive your student loan debt in its entirety or change your repayment plan for a fee, or requests for other personal information in order to suspend your payments in response to coronavirus. There is no such thing as instant student loan relief, and you should not need to pay a fee for help from your loan servicer. All federally backed loans have automatically suspended payments and set interest to 0%.
How to Protect Yourself
Do not accept unsolicited offers to help you with your
student loan payments and never give out your personal information. If you are
having trouble making payments because you’ve lost your job, reach out to your
loan servicer for options.
Social Security Scams
Social Security scams are common, but coronavirus has put a new twist on the scam. Now, in addition to watching out for scammers claiming that your Social Security number is about to be suspended, you also need to watch out for calls or letters claiming that your benefits will be canceled due to coronavirus-related office closures. Social Security offices are closed, but officers are still working, and your benefits will not be suspended. And your Social Security number will never be suspended.
How to Protect Yourself
If you are unsure if a call or email is from the Social Security Administration, reach out to them yourself for confirmation before sharing any personal information. If you have already given you Social Security number to a scammer, visit IdentityTheft.gov/SSA for steps on how to protect your credit and identity.
Because older individuals are particularly susceptible to COVID-19, scammers have been targeting them with Medicare scams. Be on the lookout for fraudulent Medicare representatives asking you to verify personal information, like your bank account, Social Security, or Medicare numbers. Medicare representatives will never call you to verify your account number, offer you free equipment or services, or try to sell you anything.
How to Protect Yourself
not sure if a phone call is legitimate, hang up and call Medicare yourself.
That way you can confirm that you are talking to an actual Medicare
representative. To reach the Medicare office, call 1-800-633-4227.
Whether it’s a natural disaster or worldwide pandemic
like the coronavirus, legitimate charities work hard to aid people in need.
This can include providing food, funds, housing or other forms of assistance. Unfortunately,
fake charities can crop up too. They might use names that sound similar to real
charities and may even have emails, websites and phone numbers that seem
legitimate but aren’t.
How to Protect Yourself
Donate to charities that you are already familiar with. If you’re questioning the legitimacy of a charity, you can use third-party websites to check credentials. Options include Charity Navigator and Give.org, which is maintained by the Better Business Bureau.
Protect Yourself from COVID-19 Scams
As you continue to navigate the uncharted waters of a
worldwide pandemic, be on the lookout for COVID-19 scams. If you’re ever unsure
about something, you can consult trustworthy government resources or well-known
news outlets to verify information. Share this information about scams with
others so they know what to be on the lookout for as well.
More resources on scams:
Seniorâs Guide to Avoiding Scams
Tax Season Scams
Student Loan Scams
The post COVID-19 Scams appeared first on Credit.com.
When you buy a home, youâre making an investment in yourself and your future. Youâre building financial stability, equity, and experience. You have a place to call your own and you can customize the space just how you want. Yet, you might be wondering how to get to that point â this is why saving up is so important.
There are some upfront costs to owning a home â primarily a down payment. Find out how much you should budget using a home loan affordability calculator and figure out how to save the amount you need. After all, the best way to save for a house is to formulate a budget that helps you work towards your house saving goals step by step. Soon enough, youâll be turning the key and stepping into a home you love.
Step 1: Calculate Your Down Payment and Timeline
When figuring out how to save for a house, you may already have a savings goal and deadline in mind. For instance, you may want to save 20 percent of your home loan cost by the end of the year. If you havenât given this much thought, sit down and crunch the numbers. Ask yourself the following questions:
What is your ideal home cost?
What percentage would you like to contribute as a down payment?
What are your ideal monthly payments?
When would you like to purchase your home?
How long would you like your term mortgage to be?
Asking yourself these questions will reveal a realistic budget, timeline, and savings goal to work towards. For instance, say you want to buy a $250,000 house with a 20 percent down payment at a 30-year loan term length. You would need to save $50,000 as a down payment; at a 3.5 percent interest rate, your monthly payments would come out to be $898.
Step 2: Budget for the Extra Expenses
Just like a new rental, your home will have fees, taxes, and utilities that need to be budgeted for. Homeowners insurance, closing costs, and property taxes are a few examples of cash expenses. Not to mention, the cost of utilities, repairs, renovation work, and furniture. Here are a few more expenses you may have to save for:
Appraisal costs: Appraisals assess the homeâs value and are usually ordered by your mortgage lender. They can cost anywhere from $312 to $405 for a single-family home.
Home inspection: A home inspection typically costs $279 to $399 for a single-family home. Prices vary depending on what you need inspected and how thorough you want the report to be. For instance, if you want an expert to look at your foundation, there will likely be an additional cost.
Realtor fees: In some states, the realtor fee is 5.45 percent of the homeâs purchase price. Depending on the market, the seller might pay for your realtor fee. In other places, it might be more common to contract a lawyer to look over your purchase agreement, which is usually cheaper than a realtor.
Appraisal and closing costs: Appraisals assess the homeâs value and are usually ordered by your mortgage lender. They can cost anywhere between $300 and $400 for a single-family home.
Step 3: Maximize Your Savings Contributions
Saving for a new home is easier said than done. To stay on track, first create a savings account that has a high yield if possible. Then, check in on your monthly savings goal to set up automatic contributions. By setting up automatic savings payments, you may treat this payment as a regular monthly expense.
In addition to saving more, spend less. Evaluate your budget to see what areas you could cut down or live without. For instance, creating your own workout studio at home could save you $200 a month on a gym class membership.
Step 4: Work Hard for a Raise
One of the best ways to boost your savings is to increase your earnings. If you already have a job you love, put in the extra time and effort to earn a raise. Learning new skills by attending in-person or virtual training seminars or learning a new language could increase your earning potential. Not only could you land a raise, but you could add these skills to your resume.
Sometimes, putting in the extra effort doesnât always land you a raise, and thatâs okay! When getting a raise is out of the question, consider looking at other opportunities. Figure out which industry suits you and your skillset and start applying. You may end up finding your dream job, along with your desired pay.
Step 5: Create More Streams of Income
Establishing different income streams could help your house savings budget. If one source of income unexpectedly goes dry, having other sources to cut the slack is helpful. You wonât have to worry about the sudden income change when paying your monthly mortgage.
For example, creating an online course as a passive income project may earn you only $5 this month. As traffic picks up, your monthly earnings could surpass your monthly income. To create an abundant financial portfolio, there are a few different ways to do so:
Create an online course: Write about something youâre passionate about and share your skills online. Sell your digital products on Etsy or Shopify to earn supplemental income.
Grow a YouTube channel: Start a YouTube channel and share your skills to help others within your industry of expertise. For instance, âHow to start a YouTube channelâ could be its own hit.
Invest in low-risk investments: From CDâs to money market funds, there are a few types of investments that could grow your cash with low risk.
Step 6: Pay Off Your Biggest Debts
Before taking on more debt like a mortgage, itâs important to free up your credit usage. Credit utilization is the percentage of available credit you have open compared to what you have used. If you have $200 in debt, but $1,000 available on your credit card, youâre only using 20 percent of your credit utilization. A higher credit utilization could potentially hinder your credit score over time. Not only can paying off debts feel satisfying, but it could also increase your credit score and prepare you for this next big purchase.
To pay off your debts, create an action plan. Write out all your debt accounts, how much you still owe, and their payment due dates. From there, start increasing your payments on your smallest debt. Once you pay off your smallest debt in full, you may feel more motivated to pay off your next debt account. Keep up with these good habits as you take on your mortgage account.
Step 7: Donât Be Afraid to Ask For Help
Whether your touring homes or want help adjusting your budget, donât hesitate to ask for help. If youâre trying to figure out what your budget should look like, research budgeting apps like Mint to build a successful financial plan.
If youâre curious about additional mortgage expenses, your budget, or investment opportunities, reach out to a trusted professional or utilize government resources. Not only are they able to help you prepare for your next big step, but they could also help you and your finances in the long term.
Step 8: Store Your Savings in a High Yield Saving Account
While you may have a perfect budget and a home savings goal, itâs time to make every dollar count. Before you add to your account, research different savings accounts and their monthly yields. The higher the yield, the more your savings could grow as long as your account is open.
In September of 2020, the national average interest rate on savings accounts was capped at 0.8 percent. If you were to deposit only $100 into a high yield savings account with an APY of 0.8 percent, you could earn $80 off your investment over the year. This helps you save extra money by just putting your money into a savings account.
First, set a savings goal to match your estimated down payment and mortgage monthly payments. Then add your contributions to a high yield savings account to grow your money overtime.
Donât forget to budget for extra mortgage expenses like appraisal costs, home inspections, realtor fees, or closing costs. Keep in mind, your monthly utilities and fees may also be more expensive than your current living situation.
Prepare for the additional costs by increasing your earning potential and optimizing additional income stream opportunities.
Free up your credit utilization by paying off as much debt as possible before buying a house. Keep up these good habits throughout the length of your mortgage term.
When you purchase a home, youâre building a piggy bank for your future. Every month you pay your mortgage, you pay part of it to yourself because you own the home. Instead of paying rent to someone else, you reap your own investment when you sell. Most importantly, though, youâll have a place thatâs truly your own.
The post How to Save for a House in 8 Steps appeared first on MintLife Blog.
Thereâs this mansion in Beverly Hills that a large part of the worldâs population has already seen, even though they might not realize it.
Itâs a historic house thatâs been used in endless Hollywood movies, TV series, and music videos. After you finish reading this article, you might just realize that youâve seen this house before, too. Well, now you will also know its history, and when you see it again on your TV screen (and more than likely, you will), youâll recognize it.
The place weâre referring to is known as Greystone Mansion or Doheny Mansion, and itâs located at 905 Loma Vista Drive in Beverly Hills. The Tudor Revival mansion was originally completed in 1928, after three yearsâ worth of construction and a total cost of over $4 million — an insane amount at the time.Â
The inception of Doheny Mansion
The 55-room, 46,000-square-foot mansion lies on a 16-acre site within Trousdale Estates. It was designed by architect Gordon Kaufmann and built by the P.J. Walker Company. The land was actually a wedding gift from oil tycoon Edward Doheny to his son, Edward âNedâ Doheny, and his new wife, Lucy Smith.
Edward Doheny was an American oil tycoon who drilled the first oil well in Los Angeles in 1892. His story was depicted in the Academy Award-winning movie There Will Be Blood, starring Daniel Day-Lewis. Interestingly enough, the movie was actually filmed at Doheny Mansion.
Ned Dohenyâs house became known as Greystone because it was built mainly of stone, and has a grey, stone-cold appearance. The house took roughly three years to build, and included stables, kennels, tennis courts, a gatehouse, a swimming pool and pavilion, a lake with babbling brooks and waterfalls, and even a fire station.
A bittersweet move-in for the Dohenys
Unfortunately, Ned Doheny didnât get to enjoy his new home for too long. Just four months after moving into Greystone Mansion, Doheny was found dead in the house, alongside his secretary and friend, Hugh Plunkett. The case was ruled a murder-suicide, however, some claim that thereâs more to that story.
Doheny was killed by his own gun, and he was not buried with the rest of his family, but in a different cemetery, just a few yards away from where Plunkett was laid to rest. This has led some to believe that Doheny might have committed suicide, however, this is just a theory that certainly adds a bit of mystery to Greystone Mansion.
Following Ned Dohenyâs death, his wife Lucy remarried and lived in the house with her children until 1955. Greystone Mansion was later sold to Paul Trousdale, the developer of Trousdale Estates, who then sold it to Henry Crown of Chicago. The businessman never actually lived in the house, but leased it out to film studios — and thatâs how Greystoneâs prolific movie career started.Â
Over the decades, Greystone Mansion has been featured in numerous Hollywood movies and TV series, including classics like The Big Lebowski, Eraserhead, The Witches of Eastwick, Death Becomes Her, Batman & Robin, The Bodyguard, Dark Shadows, The Prestige, The Social Network, and X-Men.
The mansion has also made appearances in TV series, including Alias and The Young and the Restless, and it also played the part of Chilton Academy in Gilmore Girls.
Last but not least, Greystone Mansion has been featured in commercials and even music videos. You might have already toured the house alongside Robert Downey Jr., in the music video for Elton Johnâs single I Want Love. Let us refresh your memory:
In 1965, the City of Beverly Hills purchased Greystone Mansion, and a few years later, the property became a public city park. It was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1976, as Doheny Estate/Greystone.
The mansion continues to be used as a filming location and a destination for special events such as music festivals, fundraisers, and even weddings. Greystone Mansion houses the Beverly Hills Flower & Garden Festival, the yearly Catskills West drama camp, and The Annual Hollywood Ball, among others.
A carefully preserved slice of L.A. history
Greystone Mansion is a remarkable feat of architecture, and most of its original features have been carefully preserved over the years. The property features hand-carved oak banisters, balustrades and rafters, seven chimneys, each designed by a different artist, a movie theater room, a billiard room, a hidden bar, and a two-lane original Brunswick bowling alley. The alley was renovated so that it could be used by the filming crew for There Will Be Blood.Â
Thereâs a grand hall with distinctive, black-and-white marble floors and a very famous staircase. In fact, the staircase at Greystone Mansion has been featured in numerous productions, due to its majestic appearance.
Greystone Mansion also included a servantâs quarters that took up two entire floors on the east wing and was built to accommodate a live-in staff of 15.
There was also a living room with a balcony where musicians performed at special events, and a kitchen pantry with a secret wall safe that held the familyâs silver and gold kitchenware.
This stunning, stone-clad Beverly Hills mansion continues to attract filming crews, and weâre definitely going to be seeing it again on the big screen. At the same time, its beautiful, lush gardens and its rich history will continue to attract visitors from around the world.
Here’s a further glimpse into the mansion’s history, to keep you occupied until you get a chance to visit in person:
Featured image courtesy of The City of Beverly Hills
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You've bought a great pair of jeans, but they're too long and you don’t have time to hem them before you need to wear them. Simply fold them up and tape with duct tape. The hem will last the whole night—and maybe even through a couple of washings. This is also a great tip if you're not sure exactly where you want to hem your pants. Have a "trial run" using the duct tape, and they’re all ready to sew.
2. Use Duct Tape to Mend a Shingle
If one of your roof's shingles has fallen off, you can make a temporary replacement using duct tape. Cut a 1/4-inch thick piece of plywood to match the same size as the missing shingle. Then wrap it in duct tape (you will need several strips), and wedge it in place.
3. Keep Wood from Splitting with Duct Tape
When cutting plywood, first reinforce where you plan on cutting with a strip of duct tape. The tape will keep the wood from splitting as you saw, and then you can peel the tape right off.
4. Duct Tape = Instant Pool Liner
When pool liners tear, it can be very costly to repair them. But duct tape can do the job. Simply cover the tear, and keep and eye on it to make sure it doesn't start to peel off. Believe it or not, a single piece of duct tape can usually last underwater for an entire summer.
5. Duct Tape Your Slippers
To make your slippers waterproof and therefore safe to wear on a quick trip outdoors, simply cover the bottoms with—you guessed it—overlapping layers of duct tape.
6. Duct Tape for Getting Rid of Bugs
If you've got a fly problem, tape five to ten pieces of duct tape to themselves (making a ring with the sticky side out), then hang them from the ceiling near any overhead lights. Flying insects will become stuck, then just throw out the tape and your problem is solved!
7. Customize Tools with Duct Tape
If the screwdriver, hammer, or other tool that you're using is hard to grip, wrap duct tape around the handle until it more easily fits your hand.
8. Make Disposable Vacuum Bags Last Longer
If your disposable vacuum cleaner bag is full and you don't have replacement on hand, it's duct tape to the rescue! Remove the bag and cut a slit straight down the middle. Empty it into the garbage, then pinch the sides together at the slit and fold over. Tape the fold with a liberal amount of duct tape. The bag will hold a little less, but you’ll be ready to vacuum again without having to run to the store.
9. Keep Bugs from Biting on a Hike
Before you start out on your hiking trip, tape your pant legs to your boots with duct tape. This will ensure you'll get no bites from ticks, flies, and mosquitoes.
10. Make Storing Glue and Caulk Easier
If tubes of glue, caulk, and other home repair necessities are cluttering up your work bench, hang them from the wall with nails. Create holes that the tubes can hang from by wrapping a piece of duct tape from front to back on the bottom (non-dispensing end) of the tube. Leave an extra 1/2-inch flap of tape at the end that doesn’t touch the tube and just folds onto itself. Then poke a hole through this part and you'll have a handy hanging hole. Wrap another piece of tape around the tube the other way to reinforce the tape you’ve already applied.
What are your best uses for duct tape? Let us know in the comments below, or on our Facebook page!