St. Johns Boosters

Where do you go for a referral? 6 Reasons to Call Your Insurance Agent!

Has this happened to you? You need a plumber, a carpenter, a mechanic, or a mortgage professional and don’t know who to call? That happens every day to thousands of people. Well, where do you find that solution? My kids barely know what a phone book is? Most people use the computer and that can is hit or miss. I have the best answer to that question – call your insurance agent for a referral!

6 Reasons you should call your insurance agent if you need help fixing anything.

1. Most agents have a referral network.
I belong to one of the largest groups in the Pacific Northwest with 35+ members. Considering this group and other groups I am involved in the connections are endless.

2. Our reputation is our name.
If I provide someone with a referral I have checked them out. I would not refer anyone to a partner that I would not let work in my house. As a matter of fact, I have some that I would let watch my kids and we’re not even related.

3. The views expressed online may not be true.
We all know about keyboard cowboys. Sometimes the things that go wrong are not the fault of the business. Having someone with personal knowledge of the company can go a lot further than an online review. Combining online information and the opinion of someone you like, know, and trust is a better way to reach a decision.

4. We deal with a wide array of customers and claims situations.
Every day, I am asked to provide my opinion on something involving homes, cars, and businesses. My background in small business, combined with 14 years in claims is living the jingle; “We know a thing or two because we’ve seen a thing or two.”

5. We like to help people
My agency has worked with many different organizations over the past few years. This list includes; Impactful People NW, Fort Vancouver Regional Library Foundation, St. John’s Center for Opportunity, and the St. John’s Boosters. We want to provide the same support to our customers and our neighbors.

6. Our referral partners provide answers not further problems
In insurance, I am in the business of removing or minimizing the risk a person experiences. My referral partners enjoy solving problems. In fact, I always expect them to provide another referral if they cannot fix a problem. You should too.

I’ll give you another reason, they’re free!  

So the next time you are not sure who to call try dialing 971.303.8508 or find us at


Friday Night Dinner

It’s a typical Friday night. My oldest is happy to be participating in his karate class, especially now that he’s bigger than his father. The youngest, well he wants a buddy to play Minecraft with and his dog is loyally handling the job.

Mom is in the kitchen getting things ready after a day at work. She likes her new job because it is flexible and lets her be there when the two boys need her time. Seeing patients in line with her schedule works. Those long hours and days in school are finally paying off.

She goes to the sliding door and lets the other dog out that saw a squirrel run across the back fence. Thankfully, the rain hasn’t started. It’s been a long summer and looking at the clouds it might be the start of the long wet northwest fall, winter, and spring!

Mom looks out the front door and sees the oldest coming back from Karate. It’s time for dinner. She is just happy that she and her family can sit and enjoy this meal together. Three years before this story was written, I died. It really doesn’t matter how.

We have 86,400 seconds in each day. That means we have 3,600 seconds every hour. The reason the above story could be true? I took the 3,600 seconds it took to make sure that my family would be able to have dinner, a dog, and the ability to have a life after the death of a loved one.

People faced with the discussion of life insurance often ask, “Where do I start?”

There are several ways to look at this and the easiest one is usually looking at it through the LIFE acronym.

L – Liabilities What debts would you want to be erased if you pass away? This can be a mortgage, loan, or credit card debt. Anything you want to be paid off would go here.

I – Income Replacement How many years of income would you want your spouse to have? This can depend on the amount indicated in liabilities. Maybe it depends on how old the kids are at the time – or a balance of both?

F – Final Expenses To pay for the arrangements you make with your family to begin the grieving process

E – Education How much will college tuition cost when your children reach that age?

Consider this from

It shows the projected tuition costs for the Fall of 2029 – Spring of 2030

  • For a 4-year public (out of state)  with  5%  tuition increases, the cost is $71,373
  • For a 4-year private (non-profit) with 5% tuition increases, the cost is $92,869
  • For a 4-year public in-state with 5% tuition increases, the cost is $41,228

Make the increases 7% and the costs jump to $100,239, $130,428 and $57,609 for the schools.*

Source: Campus Consultants Inc * Includes room and board

Clearly, in life and Life Insurance, there are more things to consider then would fit in this post. Please take a portion of the 86,400 seconds you have every day, about 3600 seconds, to make sure that your family gets a typical Friday night dinner if you are not there to enjoy it.

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photo courtesy of


A life lesson from the Northern White Rhino…..

On Tuesday March 20, 2018, the last male northern white rhino died. This left two females as the only living members of the subspecies in existence. Thankfully, this may not mean extinction for the animal as scientists indicate In Vitro Fertilization may allow the rhinos to reproduce; it is not a guarantee.
Life lessons learned

How we are remembered and the lives of those we leave behind can be greatly impacted by life insurance.  One of the things you do when you get a life insurance policy is to pick a beneficiary; most of the time it is a spouse or child.

The first beneficiaries named are the primary beneficiaries.  The primary beneficiary or beneficiaries are who will receive the proceeds from the life insurance policy when the named insured dies.  If they die prior to the death of the named insured, they or their estate get nothing.  That makes it important to name contingent beneficiaries. Contingent beneficiaries are only paid if primary beneficiaries are not alive when the named insured dies.

In situations with multiple beneficiaries you will want to split the proceeds with percentages.  In situations with variable, universal, or indexed universal life policies the probability exists that the life policy with an initial face value will end up with a face value that is difficult to split evenly.  For example, a $500,000 life insurance policy could be worth $508,250 at the time the named insured dies.  Dividing that amount into percentages is the best way to accomplish your goals after your death when there is more than one beneficiary.

If you want to think outside of the box, consider this:  you have a philanthropic itch that needs to be scratched, like the preservation of the northern white rhino.

Let’s assume that you have done well and have accumulated $1,500,000 in life insurance to date.  You arrange for it all to go to your surviving spouse. You could direct a portion of the monies left to her to go into an irrevocable trust that will be left to her estate on her passing and interest on the principle goes to the preservation of the white rhino.  Again, the lawyer and accountant will assist you in arranging

What happens if you are in an accident and your wife (primary beneficiary) dies before you do?  To arrange for this scenario, you could set a contingent beneficiary, let’s say – the university you graduated from, with directions to set up a trust to develop and operate a scholarship for veterinary students in your name.   You can also arrange for the remaining percentage to go to the charity of your choice, helping in the preservation of the white rhino.  If you arrange this by percentage, you can make it easier to direct what percent the charity gets and what percent the school gets.  This will establish a legacy helping both the northern white rhino and the university you graduated from.

There are many ways to use the proceeds of life insurance to benefit your family and the things you care about most of all.  Life insurance can be complicated, so please seek out a professional insurance agent to help get the process started in the right direction.

Call my office today, 971.303.8508, and we can discuss life insurance and see what the right choice is for you.

You can also visit our website at

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