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Don't Get Soaked Forgoing Pool Insurance
If you want to make a splash this summer, you're not alone. Some 7.4 million homes, yards, and patios across the nation currently sport swimming pools. Are you considering adding a pool for your recreational pleasure? If you are, the following steps will help ensure your pool is protected, making swim time safe and secure.

Check local laws - Laws vary by town and county, so check to see if what you are adding requires any permits or must adhere to any codes. And note: a fence, and possibly a deck, may be required for all pools in your area.

Contact your insurance agent - A pool increases your liability risk. You should make your insurance company aware of your addition and discuss proper coverage. If your homeowners insurance policy includes the minimum of liability protection, you may want to increase this amount. Also consider replacement coverage in the event your pool and other outdoor items are damaged by a storm.

Practice pool safety - Taking a few precautions can help prevent that liability claim. Try the following tips:
  • Install a fence. Even if your area doesn't require a fence, add one to keep small children from conducting dangerous unsupervised explorations of your pool. Over 3,400 drownings occur across the country each year. You don't want one of these to happen in your backyard.
  • Clear hazards. Glass bottles, toys, and other items can be dangerous if not properly stored. Radios and electrical devices are also potential dangers. Keep these items clear of the pool area or safely tucked away when not in use.
  • Be prepared. Keep a first aid kit and ring buoy at the ready. Learn water rescue techniques and CPR. Ensure all guests know how to swim before entering your pool.
  • Use nonslip surfaces, especially on the deck directly around the pool and on the diving board. And mark depths in a prominent way.

It's a Dog's World, Thanks to Home Tech
Dog house
It's not only humans who benefit from the boom in home technology. As a recent article from RISMedia suggests, pets are reaping the rewards, too.

Smart thermostats allow homeowners to monitor temperature in each room and adjust for weather conditions from their smartphones or tablets. This can be a lifesaver for pets, who often suffer when owners are away and temperatures dip or rise drastically.

Owners also can control remotely when their pet's food will be dispensed, and even be notified if supplies are running low.

And for owners who have to leave their dogs alone for the day, there are "smart doggy doors" that use radio frequencies to communicate with a tag on the dog's collar and let puppy in and out.

These days, it truly is a dog's world!

From Butcher to Bun: The History of the Hot Dog
Hot dog
Along with nice weather, summer brings together two important pastimes: grilling and baseball. These popular activities share a common culinary theme: hot dogs.

Enjoyed in thousands of backyards each year, and by sports fans in stadiums across the country, the hot dog has become a summer staple. But where did the idea originate to grill a tube of meat, insert it in a bun, and load it with toppings?

In fact, both Austrians and Germans lay claim to the honor. Germans claim the "frankfurter" was created in Frankfurt, where Germans made thick, fatty sausages and coined the term "franks." But the Viennese point out that the name given to the first hot dogs was "wienerwurst." In the Austrian language (which is slightly different from standard German), "Wein" means Vienna, and "wurst" means sausage, so clearly they were Austrian sausages first!

Either way, we can thank German immigrants for bringing their native sausages with them to the New World, where they first sold hot dogs from pushcarts in New York City in the 1860s. Some stories claim the bun (or roll) was added simply so customers wouldn't burn their hands on the hot sausages.

As for the moniker "hot dog," legend has it the term was coined in 1902 at a New York Giants baseball game. The cold weather prompted one vendor to switch from supplying ice cream and sodas to hot sausages as a particularly apropos alternative. The call went out: "Get your dachshund sausages, red hot!" and the hot "dog" was born.

Summer Rental Insurance: Yours, Theirs or Both?
It's summer! Some families spend their summer holidays at a luxury resort, while others stake a tent in the woods. And then there's the increasingly popular option of renting a vacation home. This home-away-from-home getaway can provide a great setting for creating family memories - as long as you ensure you have the insurance coverage you need, because this responsibility rests with both the renter and the homeowner.

Proper insurance for you: As the traveler, you should be covered by your homeowners insurance policy in two ways:
  • Liability: If you accidentally damage someone else's property, your policy will help pay for the damage. So if the kids' indoor soccer game gets out of hand, you're covered.
  • Personal property: Your homeowners policy will protect your personal belongings, even away from home. However, coverage limits may be lower in this case. Additionally, recreational equipment such as boats usually requires a separate policy. Consult with your agent to ensure you have the coverage you need.
Proper insurance for them: The owner of the rental property should have proper coverage for the home. Be sure to verify that the owner has a homeowners policy with appropriate liability coverage, in case anyone is injured on the property as a result of owner negligence. The owner's homeowners policy should also cover any damage to the home that occurs from natural disasters.
The Secret to Finding the Right Auto Insurance Coverage
The wrong auto insurance could end up costing you. With so many options available - and so many "deals" that aren't really good value - it pays to get good advice.

Discover how to get the best coverage by requesting my free guide "The Secret to Finding the Right Auto Insurance Coverage."
Just reply to this email and I'll send it right out to you.

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Recipe: Grilled Chicken Skewers with Tamarind Marinade
(Can't find tamarind? See * below)
Serves 4
1/4 cup tamarind concentrate
2 teaspoons minced garlic
3 tablespoons light brown sugar
1/2 tablespoon salt
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 1/2 pounds chicken tenderloins
Wooden skewers
Whisk tamarind, garlic, sugar, salt, and oil in a shallow dish until sugar is dissolved. Add chicken and toss to coat all pieces. Cover and refrigerate for at least 3 hours or overnight.

Soak wooden skewers in water for at least 30 minutes before using and preheat grill to medium high. Thread 1-2 chicken tenderloins onto each skewer. Place them on the grill for about 5 minutes on each side or until internal temperature reaches 160 degrees.

Using tongs, remove from the grill and allow to rest for 5 minutes before serving.

*Tamarind can be found in most Asian grocery stores, or mix equal parts of lime juice and additional light brown sugar as a substitute.
This newsletter and any information contained herein are intended for general informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal, financial or medical advice. The publisher takes great efforts to ensure the accuracy of information contained in this newsletter. However, we will not be responsible at any time for any errors or omissions or any damages, howsoever caused, that result from its use. Seek competent professional advice and/or legal counsel with respect to any matter discussed or published in this newsletter. This newsletter is not intended to solicit properties currently for sale.
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