Friday, February 27, 2009

Client So Impressed Gives Agent Flowers

A Sav-on Special Client was so impressed with Claudia in our Kent office they brought her flowers and left her a raving testimonial!

And if you can believe it, this isn't the first time a client has left flowers for agents in our Kent office!

Guess that's our great service.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Golden Apple Awards Tonight!

Tune in to PBS tonight to see this year's Golden Apple Award winners.

The Golden Apple Awards salute exceptional educators from Washington. This is an amazing program that spotlights the teachers and programs that inspire and change the lives of our youth.

PEMCO has proudly funded the KCTS 9's Golden Apple Awards for the last 16 years to publicly recognize our educators for all their outstanding efforts. One of the awards carries the name of former PEMCO CEO, Stanley O. McNaughton.

The program airs on Wednesday, Feb. 25, at 8 p.m. on Channel 9, KCTS/Seattle and KYVE/Yakima. You can also set your recorder to catch it Feb. 27 at noon on KCTS 9 HD Seattle/Yakima; Feb. 27 at noon on KYVE 47 Yakima; Mar. 18 at 4 a.m. on KCTS 9 HD Seattle/Yakima; or Mar. 18 at 4 a.m. on KYVE 47 Yakima.

This year's winners are:


Bob Adamson, principal, Terrace Heights Elementary, East Valley School District (Yakima)
Dave Anderson, principal, Mount Vernon High School, Mount Vernon School District
Linda Evans, teacher, Marcus Whitman Cowiche Elementary, Highland School District
Marjorie Lamarre, teacher, John Muir Elementary, Seattle School District 1
Debbie Renner, educational sign language interpreter, Evergreen High School, Highline School District
Megan Vogel, science department chair, Ballard High School, Seattle School District 1
Robert Young, math teacher, Henry Foss High School, Tacoma Public School District


Rainier Scholars, Seattle, Calvin Lyons, executive director
La Escuelita Bilingual School, Seattle, Carmen Sosa-Masso, director and founder


Mike Town, Science Teacher, Green Schools/Cool Schools, Redmond High School

For more information on KCTS 9's Golden Apple Awards visit

Did you know...PEMCO gives a special discount to teachers!

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Top 10 WORST Foods to Eat While Driving

“Driver distraction” causes 25 percent of the car crashes reported to police. While cell phones get a bad rap, they actually rank in fourth place among distractions, according to, which recently reported results from a Response Insurance Agency survey. Eating was a major culprit, topped only by tuning the radio.

In a separate Exxon survey, 70 percent of drivers said they eat while driving. Eighty-three percent said they drank coffee, juice, or soda while behind the wheel. (A handful even admitted to wishing they had a microwave oven in the car!)

With such widespread freeway foraging, it’s probably no wonder that eating plays a big part in single-vehicle and rear-end collisions where the feasting driver fails to stop in time.

The problem, say investigators, often comes with a confluence of unexpected events – a sudden stop ahead or a sharp curve combined with a food spill.

Most of the food-distracted drivers agree. They report it wasn’t the food that caused them to take their eyes and minds off the road. It was trying to mop up a spill.

Mornings are the worst when coffee-swilling drivers abhor ruining their work clothes for the day. Fearing they’ll be late for work, they try to clean up the spill on the go rather than pulling over.

Keeping spills in mind, reported these as the top-10 worst foods to eat in a car:
  1. Coffee. Those spill-proof lids aren’t – plus the hot temperature adds pain to the distraction.
  2. Soup. Same problem as coffee.
  3. Tacos. They self-destruct even under the best circumstances.
  4. Chili. It drips and must be eaten with a spoon, taking one hand off the wheel.
  5. Hamburgers. Grease, ketchup, and mustard are a stain waiting to happen.
  6. Barbecued foods. Ditto.
  7. Fried chicken. Greasy fingers mean greasy steering wheels.
  8. Jelly or cream-filled donuts. The filling often ends up on your shirt.
  9. Soda pop. Prone to spills, pop swallowed too fast also gives you a nasty nose fizz.
  10. Chocolate. Since it melts from the warmth of your hands, it gets all over the steering wheel.

Driving a stick shift while eating seems to double the danger (one hand shifting, one hand holding the food, no hand left to steer). The danger increases further when you add yet another distraction such as a chatty passenger, cell phone, or tuning the radio.

Thank you to PEMCO Insurance Company.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

The Economy is Down, And Theft is Up

According to a recent study by Javelin Strategy & Research, the number of identity theft cases increased 22 percent in 2008 to 9.9 million.

Some key findings from the study:

  • 2008 was the first year that the number of cases increased since Javelin began tracking ID theft in 2003.

  • Crimes of opportunity, such as stolen wallets, represented 43 percent of cases, compared to 33 percent in 2007, indicating an increase in the desperation of criminals.

  • Women were 26 percent more likely to be victims of identity theft, reporting a higher incidence of lost or stolen information during purchases in stores.

  • The survey showed that only 11 percent of cases involved online access.

Thank you to Safeco Insurance Company

Monday, February 16, 2009

State Farm Cancels Home Policies

Is Washington next?...

Click here to see the newscast

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Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Donate to Cheri for MS Research!

A longtime employee of Sav-on who retired last year has not yet retired from taking part in the annual MS Walk!

Cheri has been battling Multiple Sclerosis for many years and she is still doing the walk although it is difficult to do so at times. And she needs our support!

At the moment, she has $60 of her $250 goal. Please click here to donate or to find out more! You can donate anonymously or choose to show only your name and keep your donation amount anonymous. Proceeds go to the National MS Society.

All of us at Sav-on wish Cheri the best and we miss her very much!

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Graduate Results: January

These are savings for January Graduates off their 6 month policies!

Tara H of Federal Way $781
Alejandro A of Auburn $683
Harold F of Renton $648
Michael D of Seattle $510
Phaly S of Seattle $508
Piter P of Auburn $480
Katy Q of Sumner $453
Andres T of Bellevue $446
Drago P of SeaTac $442
Lois S of Burien $407

That's an average savings of 33%!

Think you might be a graduate? Call your Sav-on Special Agent and find out today! 1-888-867-2866.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Experts Say Refi Soon...Or You Might Miss Out!

Eyeing a Refi? The Time is Now

Many homeowners may feel like burying their head in the sand, an understandable sentiment given the recent shakeup in many markets. But with most interest rates in 2009 hanging around the lowest levels in decades, those playing the "ignorance is bliss" game may be missing out on a rare chance to improve their finances.

The Advantages of Now

Interest rates have dipped to levels not seen in decades, particularly on fixed-rate loans for prime borrowers. As the new year and a new administration get into full swing, average interest rates on 30-year fixed rate mortgages have hovered in the low 5% range (and in some cases, have dropped below 5%).While these rates have yet to translate into a quick turnaround home sales, they have spurned an increase in mortgage applications by homeowners looking to refinance at a lower rate. For homeowners sitting on a higher fixed rate or a less stable variable rate loan, the current interest rates may present an opportunity that just can't be ignored.

If you've been considering a refinance but have been waiting to see exactly how far rates will drop, this just may be the time to make a move.

What to Expect

While the last few weeks have seen an increase in refinancing applications, a sizable percentage of these applications will not be approved. Low interest rates aside, lenders are focused on protecting their investors and to that end have more stringent credit requirements than in years past.

Homeowners who owe more than the current market value of their homes are unlikely to be approved for refinancing. By the same token, would-be borrowers with low credit scores or without well-documented income have a much greater chance of being denied. Some homeowners who hold jumbo mortgages (over the $625,000 limit for loans that can by guaranteed/bought by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac in high cost areas) may find refinancing hard to come by.

What to Do

  • Do You Qualify? - Do you have a solid credit score (660 and above)? Are you up to date on your current mortgage payments? If the answer to either is no, your chances of being approved are much worse. Also, if you are shopping for a cash-out refinance, you'll find that the credit and loan-to-value requirements are even more stringent.
  • Establish Value - The next step is to begin determining your home's value. You can use various online resources to get a rough gauge of current market value. Some owners will pay for their own appraisal prior to applying for the mortgage. Other homeowners have been known to seek a ballpark estimate from their real estate agent.
  • Compare Savings - Conventional wisdom was that a refinance loan should be 2 percentage points below your current mortgage to be worthwhile. That standard may not apply, however if you can lower your interest rate slightly but still recoup closing costs in a short time span. Likewise, switching from an adjustable rate to a fixed rate mortgage may be worthwhile regardless. Be wary of refinancing that extends the life of the loan, as this will most likely make the loan more expensive over the long term.
  • Prepare for Screening - Lending standards have become much stricter over the last year. Be prepared to discuss all aspects of your credit, your current loan and your income history. Have at least a two-year documentation of your income, as "stated income" mortgages have all but gone by the wayside.

From Prudential Real Estate Advisor e-newsletter