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Weigh Anchor with Insurance Coverage This Summer
Are you ready for another boating season with your favorite vessel? Of course. But don't set sail without your anchor, your insurance anchor, that is.

While car owners usually ensure they obtain proper coverage for their vehicles, boat owners are often unaware of their options. Due to the risks and potential costs involved, insuring water vehicles is just as important as insuring land vehicles. In fact, your boat may well have a higher value than your car! Before you hit the lake with this valuable asset, talk to your agent about insurance coverage for your boat. Options are available for a wide range of boating concerns:
  • Risk coverage: Insure your boat in case of fire, theft, storm, capsizing, stranding, collision, or explosion.
  • Property coverage: You likely have a lot invested in the equipment aboard your vessel, possibly more than you realize. Insurance can cover items such as tools, life preservers, seat cushions, anchors, oars, dinghies, extra fuel tanks, canopies, and skis.
  • Liability coverage: This will provide coverage in the case of an accident. You will be protected against legal liability if you injure someone with your boat or cause damage to others' property.
  • Medical payments coverage: This provides payment of medical expenses if you and/or other boat occupants are injured in a boating accident.
  • Wreck removal: This coverage pays expenses incurred if you have to remove or destroy your wrecked boat.

Nature Nurtures: The Power of the Great Outdoors
Everyone knows what research now proves: nature is good for you. Be they gardeners, dog walkers, or wilderness wanderers, people simply feel healthier in the great outdoors. But why?

In a recent column, gardening expert Mark Cullen tells us it's all about trees. He writes, "We know we feel better when we spend time in the natural environment of a conservation area or urban park, or in our backyard. ..." Referring to a University of Chicago study, Cullen adds, "In fact, 10 additional trees per city block increased...subjects' health perception by as much as $10,000 in extra income (like winning a small lottery!)."

In a recent article in Ecologist, Richard J. Dolesh explains why: "New research reported in the British Journal of Sports Medicine now provides scientific proof that walking in nature and spending time under leafy shade trees causes electrochemical changes in the brain that can lead people to enter a highly beneficial state of 'effortless attention.'"

Psychology professors Rachel and Stephen Kaplan have been researching what they call "the restorative benefits" of nature for decades. In a cover story for the American Psychological Association, writer Rebecca A. Clay summarizes their findings: "People don't have to head for the woods to enjoy nature's restorative effects, the Kaplans emphasize. Even a glimpse of nature from a window helps. In one well-known study, for instance, Rachel Kaplan found that office workers with a view of nature liked their jobs more, enjoyed better health, and reported greater life satisfaction."

So get out there! It's good for you.

Why Emojis Are Taking Over Our Lives
Recently, Facebook introduced five emojis to replace the thumbs-up icon. But would they catch on? At the time, Jessica Guynn wrote in USA Today, "Acknowledging that 'like' isn't the right sentiment for every occasion, the giant social network is offering new options. Reactions, five emoting emojis, [are now] rolling out to Facebook's nearly 1.6 billion users around the globe..."

Around the same time, a USA Today headline used emojis, and as writer Esme Cribb noted in the Content Strategist: "Yes, emojis have now officially graced the pages of print newspapers..."

The emoji platform, which tracks online sentiment and builds strategies through the use of emojis, found in a study that some 60% of respondents use emojis weekly, and many more frequently.

And, as Andrea Ayers wrote in the Crew blog: "Over a five-month period...emojis were used over 1.7 billion times on Twitter." Ayers asks: "What exactly is driving our use of emoticons?" And responds: "The answer is quite simple, they make us feel good." A lot of Facebook fans might well agree.

It's Hail Season: Here's How to File a Claim
Every year, hail causes some $1 billion in damage. Across the United States, there were 5,411 hail storms in 2015; 1,324 of those were in June alone. Are you ready?

Hailstones range from pea-size to golf ball-size, and bigger. The Guinness World Records' website reports that the heaviest hailstones weighed in at some two pounds (1 kg) as they crashed to earth in Bangladesh on April 14, 1986.

If your property is peppered by damaging hail, there are steps to take to file a claim and receive compensation for the damage.

First, however, you'll need coverage. Typically, your homeowners insurance will cover repairs to your home if it's damaged by hail. But depending on your policy, you may have a deductible to pay first.

Talk to your agent, who can discuss policy options and recommend the best coverage for you.

Once you have coverage in place, you are prepared if a hailstorm hits. If damage results, follow these steps:
  1. Document the storm. Not just the date and time, but the hailstones themselves. Photograph them, placing a tape measure next to one to show size.
  2. Document damages. Examine your roof, and take pictures of any damaged shingles. Photograph damage to siding and don't forget to check outdoor air conditioning units. Take a peek in the attic to check for leaks, and wander the property for indications of other damage.
  3. Call your homeowners insurance claim phone number. Provide your policy number and your documentation. Your insurer will issue a claim number.
  4. A claims adjuster will be assigned to inspect your property and prepare a repair estimate. After inspection, the adjuster will file a report with your claim examiner, who will review it and make a decision on your claim.
  5. The outcome of the claim will depend on the severity of the damage, the way your house is built, and the insurance company's evaluation criteria.

If you can avoid a small claim, still contact a contractor / roofer ASAP!
To inspect and repair minor damages.

Even if you don't go through an insurance policy a homeowner is still responsible for repairing damages.

Are You Making a Mistake with Your Homeowners Insurance?
Buying a home is the biggest investment you'll ever make. With that kind of commitment, you owe it to yourself to protect it. Before you make a decision on which policy to buy, it pays to be informed. Get up to speed by requesting my free guide, "What You Need to Know Before Buying Homeowners Insurance."
Just reply to this email and I'll send it right out to you.

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Recipe: Strawberry Pistachio Bruschetta
Serves up to 8 as an appetizer
1 baguette, sliced into 1/2 inch slices
1/2 cup olive oil
1/3 cup shelled salted pistachios
1 cup goat cheese
1 pound strawberries, hulled and sliced
1/4 tablespoon balsamic glaze (store bought or homemade)
Freshly ground black pepper
Preheat oven to 450°. Brush one side of each bread slice with olive oil and arrange on a baking sheet, oiled side down. Place in oven until slightly browned around the edges, about 5 minutes. Remove from oven and set aside to cool. Lower oven temperature to 350° and toast pistachios until fragrant, about 3-5 minutes. Remove from the oven and immediately transfer to a cutting board. Let them cool down before roughly chopping.

Place toasted baguette slices on a platter, oiled side up, and spread a thin, even layer of goat cheese on each slice. Arrange strawberry slices on top, drizzle with balsamic glaze, sprinkle with chopped pistachios, and finish with black pepper.
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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