Kinda chilly this morning on the Square

Good morning! How do you like this weather? I know…if you are like most of us Texans you would trade the chill in the air for some nice liquid precipitation no? For those of you who have forgotten…liquid precipitation (in this instance) would mainly be referring to RAIN. But I digress…

This has been an interesting week. Interesting in that this new found colder weather has shaken up my normal routine and put me in a bit of a rut. I’m hoping today I can snap out of it. Any suggestions? I have a pile of quotes for insurance to do (we are doing that Ipad 2 drawing at the end of the month!) so that should help quite a bit. I also need to straighten up the office a bit before I leave today…nothing worse than coming in on a Monday with a messy office!

Right now business is good though. Nationwide is making a HUGE push in Texas…and that especially helps those of us on the IH35 corridor! Rates have come down…and will stay down…for some time. Not only that, but we have new rates coming out very soon on our auto insurance so, if you see me doing some crazy dance up and down Austin Ave. you will know why!

In other news….

The other day I made my way over to 8th street and into Down the Alley Bistro. Have you been in there lately? If not, you should! They have revamped the place entirely. Now, the entire downstairs is Down the Alley. They are in the process of a major rehaul and change. The name is changing, the menu has changed slightly, the entire downstairs is all restaurant. They will have beer and wine soon, live music, etc…. This is exactly what the square needed and I’m very excited! Here are a few pictures….

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Anyway, I was very impressed and I’m excited about the future of this old/new place to eat…and it’s just down the block from the office! Don’t get me wrong, I love…LOVE Monument Cafe. That being said, it will be nice to have another good place here to choose from. Please go and check it out and support your local businesses.

Opps…how did that picture get there? Oh well…that was the awesome Bacon and sun dried tomato pizza I had from their kitchen. Nice huh?




Insurance Tip of the day:

Apples to Apples can mean a very bad deal for you…the consumer. Have you heard the term “Apples to Apples”? It basically means you want a comparison that is equal to what you currently have… Doesn’t sound so bad right? It only seems fair to make sure you are looking at a similar product right? As an insurance professional, I hear this ALL THE TIME. Why not? People have been saying it for years. When I hear this, my ears perk up and I’m almost immediately skeptical. Why?

If you are purchasing milk, you want to know that it’s pasteurized. You want to know that it’s not expired….right? So, when shopping for milk, you are looking at quality and price. It makes sense to take, say, Hill Country Fare (HEB brand for those of you not in the Austin area)…and Borden and compare the prices with an “Apples to Apples” comparison. In the insurance business though, this can be neglectful on the insurance professional’s part. Not all insurance is created equally. Not all insurance professionals are created equally. I will give you an example.

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Last week I was quoting a family on their home and auto insurance. They asked for an “Apples to Apples” quote so they could compare. Let’s be really honest here. When you state to your insurance person you want an “Apples to Apples” quote, you aren’t wanting to compare coverages…more times than not you are wanting to compare rates. You state you want it to be “Apples to Apples” so you can see what your coverages cost at a different company. Well, this person’s current coverages were terrible! They were way too low, they were misplaced, and if they were in even the smallest accident there would have been way too high of a deductible and they would have received very little in return! How did this happen? The previous insurance agent probably wasn’t a bad guy. He probably did the same…he probably just quoted that person on what they currently had without reviewing to see whether or not those coverages were actually good coverages. This happens with “Apples to Apples” comparisons. Bad or poor coverage goes from policy, to policy, to policy without any regard as to whether or not these coverages are even beneficial to have.

I ended up increasing the individuals coverages, decreasing their deductible by more than half, showing them how to protect their family, and I saved them money…all because I was unwilling to ONLY do Apples to Apples quotes. Does this mean I won’t do a comparison like that? No. I will…but it will never be the only quote I do AND I make sure those who do business with me understand exactly what it is I quoted them what they received. Not only that, but we will meet once every 6 months to make sure nothing has changed in their lives that would require us to change coverages.

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So, the next time you are shopping for insurance, make sure you allow that individual to actually review what you have. If it sounds fishy…get another opinion. Never, though, just trust that the last person was looking out for your best interest. Maybe he was, but keep in mind that we are talking about the safety of your family.

Okay, I’m out…until next time!



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