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You obviously don’t want your employees consuming alcohol or using mind-altering substances while they’re on the clock. However, have you ever considered what after hours binge drinking, alcoholism or abuse of prescription drugs might be doing to your company’s bottom line? The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) estimates the total costs of drug abuse and addiction are $524 billion a year. Illegal drug use alone accounts for $181 billion in healthcare, productivity loss, crime, incarceration and drug enforcement.

A successful business and a competitive employee benefits package go hand in hand; you’ll rarely find one without the other. Not only do generous perks attract more job candidates to your company, they also help you minimize employee turnover, improve morale and increase productivity. But don’t stop at paid time off and a 401(k) plan. Consider these voluntary employee benefits you should add today.

Critical Illness/Cancer Insurance – Supplemental critical illness and cancer policies are becoming increasingly popular with American workers. A Hartford study found that Generation Y workers participate in these programs at a higher rate, so they may be a particularly attractive addition to your benefits package if you’re recruiting or employing younger workers.

Mother Nature can throw one heck of a punch. And as residents on the East coast learned yet again with the
winter storm Jonas, you don’t want to be on the receiving end of her wrath. Unfortunately, she seems to be striking out more often than ever, drenching parts of the U.S. in a series of extreme precipitation events that lead to flooding—the most common, and most costly, form of natural disaster according to FEMA. In fact, over the past several years, about 60 percent of all declared disasters involved flooding.

Life is full of guidelines, although some activities require more regulations than others do. For example, the official rulebook of the National Football League is over 100 pages long. The certified version of the Affordable Care Act has more than 900 pages. In contrast, buying real estate appears pretty simple; just avoid breaking these four essential home purchase rules.

1. Use a real estate agent.

Your residence may be the single biggest purchase you’ll ever make; don’t you want an experienced professional by your side? Sure, you can learn a lot about the process online, but according to the National Association of Realtors, 88 percent of homebuyers still choose to use a real estate agent or broker. There are many reasons to do so. For one, their services are generally free because the seller’s agent splits his or her commission with them. Also, a buyer’s agent can access historical price data for the area; without one, you’re definitely in danger of paying too much for the property.


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