Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Buying a Car is a Hassle For Women

Buying a car is a hassle for women, according to a recent poll conducted for CarMax, Inc. (NYSE: KMX), the nation’s largest retailer of used cars.
When asked about their last car buying experience, a fourth of the women who responded felt a quick and effortless transaction was most missing, according to a new survey of more than 500 women. Fair, low pricing and having a trustworthy salesperson were also cited as the other top factors missing when buying a vehicle.

“Now more than ever, women want a car buying experience that is straightforward and fair,” says Donna Wassel, Southwest regional vice president of CarMax. “Finding a car retailer with low, no haggle pricing that offers an easy transaction with integrity can help take away the hassle.”

The following are the results of the recent poll that asked women: Thinking about the last time that you bought a car, which of the following was most missing?

Results of the Survey
A quick, effortless transaction - 25%
A fair trade-in value - 19%
A trustworthy salesperson - 15%
Low, fair pricing - 13%
A reasonable finance rate - 13%
Respect - 2%
I have never bought a car - 13%

CarMax offers the following tips for women car shoppers:

  1. Go online to research vehicle types, makes, models, options, features, and prices. Visit websites such as carmax.com to search thousands of cars, see actual prices, view multiple photos, obtain vehicle history reports, read customer reviews and more.
  2. Print out fact sheets or information about the vehicles you are interested in, and have them ready when you step onto the lot.
  3. If you plan on selling your car, bring key paperwork items with you, including title and registration for your current vehicle, your driver’s license, and insurance card.
  4. If you have been pre-approved for a car loan, bring the approval letter with you.
  5. Find a car retailer and salesperson you like and trust by asking friends and family for referrals.
  6. Try a retailer that offers no-haggle prices and a la carte pricing on each part of the car buying transaction – the vehicle price, the extended service plan, the trade-in, and the financing.
  7. Think about selling your car separately from your car purchase. You can bring your car to CarMax for an appraisal – it’s fast, free and convenient.
  8. Have confidence in your car shopping abilities. You have done your research and are prepared to make a smart car buying decision.
  9. Do not hesitate to ask lots of questions—as many as you need so that you understand exactly what you are paying for.
  10. Be prepared to walk away if you are unhappy with your car buying experience.

The survey was conducted by Ipsos Public Affairs on behalf of CarMax. The national sample consisted of more than 500 U.S. women, aged 18 and older who were interviewed online August 17 through August 19, 2009.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Seattle: Best Fall Destination

MSN named Seattle as one of the 14 best Fall destinations!

It’s true that Seattle gets rainier in the fall, but it’s still an enchanting city to visit in autumn; be sure to leaf-peep in the Washington Park Arboretum. If it does rain, Seattle’s renowned arts scene has plenty to keep you occupied, with fall openings in theater, opera and fine art. Also delightful: Hotel rates are down 20 percent this fall from a year ago, while airfares have dropped 13 percent. (MSN)

Take a stroll through Discovery Park or hike Mount Rainier! Whatever your fancy, see the top 10 Best Seattle Park Attractions for more fun jaunts this Seattle Fall!

One that didn't make the list (and a personal favorite of mine), is the somewhat hidden Parsons Gardens (see photo) located on Queen Anne hill on the corner of 7th Ave. W and W Highland Dr.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Flood Resources

The time will soon be here when the Green River will likely flood. Now is the time to prepare (and to purchase flood insurance!)

The following are some helpful websites if the day comes. SAV-ON will continue to update on the flood watch and provide information or tips as necessary.

Want more details on the Green River flooding? Read our prior post 4 Major Seattle Cities at Flood Risk

FEMA Map Service Center
Plug in your address and view a map for flood zone information.

King County iMAP Interactive Mapping Tool
More user friendly but limited to King County residents. Choose Stormwater from the drop down box and get detailed information regarding flood risk. Most detailed but longest to load. You can also use the Parcel Viewer version which is quicker but requires your parcel number.

FEMA Map Viewer
Plug in your address and view a map for flood zone ifnormation! Very user friendly and provides information for the entire country.

How To Prepare For a Flood
Quick information from King County and a few resource websites and phone numbers.

Important Phone Numbers for Flooding (King County)
Important phone numbers and resources regarding flood information. Limited to King County.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Are You At Risk For Flooding?

How do I get a copy of the National Flood Insurance Plan (NFIP) map for my area?

Call the FEMA Map Service Center at 1-800-358-9616. If you are looking for information regarding a specific piece of property it is important to know the community number and panel number. Less specific maps for counties, cities or towns do not require this information. Each map is $.50 and each order is $2.50 for shipping and handling.

From FEMA.gov

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Unemployment Rate Rises Again

The unemployment rate has risen back to 9.2% here in Washington State after seeing a drop in rates in July, to 8.9%, (originally calcuated at 9.1%).

Washington lost about 8000 agricultural jobs last month after gaining 11,800 but the biggest decline was seen in professional and business services with a loss of 2500 jobs.

Retail trade and education and health services were also down 2400 and 1800 jobs, respectively, but government saw growth of 1800 new jobs, leisure and hospitality with 800, transportation, warehousing, and utilities, up 700, and construction with a gain of 200 jobs.

Economists say that the small gain in construction is a first since January 2008.

More than 319,000 people in Washington are still looking for work according to the Employment Security Department.

Last year at this time, Washington's unemployment rate was 5.4%. The state lost 126,100 jobs from August 2008 to August 2009, a 4.2 percent decrease. Nationally, employment declined by 4.3 percent over the past year.

However, Washington state's unemployment rate is lower than the national rate, which was 9.7% for August.

Thank you to KIRO News

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

New Spanish Commercial Airs this Month!

Our latest commercial to air this month on a few Spanish channels. Here's the sneak peek! Marque ya!

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Uncovering the Common Cold

With Summer going strong, the word "cold" may not be what you expected to see this month...Did you know that getting a cold is actually quite common, even in warm weather? Whether they hit you in Winter or Summer, colds are such an exhausting fact of life that we can't help but wonder: why haven't they come up with a cure?

Well, the most common answer is that there is no cure available, but the reality is that what we term a "cold" may refer to any one of hundreds of different varieties of disease. Some are contagious viruses, some are infections and some are influenza (the flu).

Since it can sometimes be difficult to pinpoint the source, here are some helpful tips for you...

What DOES NOT cause a cold:

Being cold--no proof that winter or cold or rain makes us more susceptible to getting a cold.

What MAY cause a cold:

Lack of sleep. In many tests it has been shown that those with less than 7 hours of sleep were more likely to catch a cold.

Lack of Vitamin D. There have been studies that show that colds can be associated with low levels of Vitamin D.


Well, none actually.

There are plenty of drugs and cures that aim to make you feel better but these medicines treat your symptoms to make them less noticeable.

There is no known medicine that can reduce the length of an infection.

Antibiotics have no effect on a common cold.

The best thing to do is to wash your hands frequently and to avoid those who knowingly have a cold. The virus often comes in through your nose and eyes, so avoid touching your face as much as possible.

All of us here at Sav-on Insurance Agencies wish you and your family continued health.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

PEMCO news release addresses politeness while driving

PEMCO Insurance issued a news release today, September 10, that reveals Washington drivers’ perceptions of how polite – or aggressive – their fellow motorists are. The PEMCO Insurance Northwest Poll, conducted by FBK Research, shows that women drivers consider themselves more polite, male drivers consider themselves more aggressive, and Western Washington drivers consider themselves slightly more polite than do Eastern Washington drivers. Also, it's amusing to note that all drivers see themselves as more polite than "the other guy," saying they witness other drivers being erratic or rude nearly 10 times as often.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Fake Air Bags Lead to Death

A lengthy KIRO Team 7 Investigation exposes a widespread, dishonest and deadly secret: You may not know if your car really has airbags until it's too late.
Investigative Reporter Chris Halsne discovers something no federal or state agency has ever attempted: how often phony airbags play a role in killing drivers.

Vik Lim is the Van Gogh of fake airbags. Our undercover investigation discovered his shop specializes in repairing wrecked car interiors, cutting out previously deployed airbags, then gluing the shells back together.

Read the remainder of this shocking article, Fake Air Bags, Fatal Consequences

When are Booster Seats Required?

"Age 4 to 8, unless they're 4-feet 9 inches tall," State Patrol Trooper Cliff Pratt said. "Anything 4 feet 9 inches or taller should be in a safety belt."

In a booster seat, the "shoulder belt should cross the shoulder and the chest," Pratt said. "It should never be under the child or behind the back. The lap belt should rest low across the lap or upper thigh area, not across the stomach."

RCW section 46.61.687 has more details, available here.

Thank you to the Seattle PI's "Seattle 911"

Thursday, September 3, 2009

SAV-ON Proudly Sponsors Youth Sports Teams

SAV-ON is proud to support the local community and youth sports teams. Enjoy the team photos!

Co-Owner Rick Devitte proudly stands alongside the Des Moines Bulldogs Basketball team!

The Des Moines Dragons Baseball team are all smiles!

In addition to being active in the community, all 6 SAV-ON locations offer Northwest Harvest drop boxes all year round! Thanks to the Kent office for recently donating another full box!

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Media Event Announces Solar Pie Project

Elected officials and news reporters will be at PEMCO tomorrow, Sept. 2, for a lunchtime media event announcing our support of Solar Pie, a local not-for-profit that teamed with our Real Estate department to install solar panels on PEMCO’s Home Office roof. The event takes place in PEMCO’s parking lot directly across Harrison Street from our loading dock.

During the event, we’ll “unveil” new information on our rooftop time and temperature sign. In addition to showing time and temperature, during daylight hours the sign will also show kilowatts being generated, while at night you’ll see reductions in carbon emissions made possible by the solar panels. Web surfers will be able to track the data at http://solarpie.org/pemco/, and a new webpage on pemco.com will summarize the Solar Pie project.

PEMCO is playing a support role in this project. Our purpose is to help Solar Pie’s principals, Carolyn and Scott Sherwood, educate the public that solar energy works, even in cloudy Seattle. The PEMCO Seattle Solar Pie Project is made possible by our Real Estate department; Seattle-based contractor McKinstry, project managers; and Seattle City Light and the Seattle Department of Planning and Development, regulatory oversight. For more information, check out the recent Seattle Times article: http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/localnews/2009614669_solarpie07m.html

This post was made possible on the behalf of Jon Osterberg, PEMCO marketing communications manager, 206-628-4019.

Survey Shows Support in Banning Texting While Driving

Data suggests legislation alone will not solve the problem

Columbus, Ohio — Nationwide Insurance today released the results of its new On Your Side® survey, which found that 8 in 10 Americans surveyed this month say they would support legislation restricting cell phone use while driving. The survey, conducted Aug. 5-9, 2009, by Harris Interactive, reports that 80 percent of Americans favor a ban on texting while driving, while two thirds favor a ban on cell phone calls, and more than half say they would support a ban on cell phone use altogether. Earlier this summer, Nationwide announced its support of the concept of a national ban on texting while driving to help curb crashes and reduce auto insurance claims.

The survey results are being announced as hundreds of highway traffic safety advocates and officials are convening at the Governors Highway Safety Association’s annual conference in Savannah, Ga., to discuss driving while distracted (DWD) and other highway safety issues. This meeting is taking place in advance of a presidential summit on DWD that is scheduled for Sept. 30 and Oct. 1 in Washington, DC.

“In recent months, the debate about the dangers of DWD has intensified as more and more states consider taking legislative action,” said Bill Windsor, Nationwide’s Safety Officer. “The survey results confirm that there is strong public support for banning texting while driving. It also provides insight into support for additional restrictions policymakers may want to consider.”

Public support for DWD legislation
The results of the new survey show there are varying degrees of support for different types of restrictions. Overall, the survey found that 8 in 10 drivers support some type of cell phone usage restriction.
  • The majority of respondents say they are supportive of laws restricting any type of cell phone use while driving.
  • 80 percent of respondents support a ban on text messaging while driving.
  • 80 percent of respondents support a ban on e-mailing while driving.
  • Two thirds (67 percent) of respondents say they are supportive of laws restricting phone calls while driving.
  • Of those who support some type of cell phone usage restriction, nearly 3 in 4 believe the law should apply to all drivers, not just specific groups.

    Regional differences
    In geographic regions where one would expect to find higher cell phone usage and more multitasking lifestyles, support for a ban was high. The majority of respondents in the west and northeast regions say they would support a ban on any type of cell phone use while driving.

    Generational differences
    While it’s not surprising that older generations are supportive of bans, even members of Generations X (ages 33-44) and Y (ages 21-32), who are more likely to use cell phones, are supportive of laws – particularly those banning text messaging and e-mailing. Three fourths of Generation X and Y respondents favor these restrictions.

    The overwhelming support for legislation may be driven by increased public recognition of the dangers associated with DWD. In 2008, Nationwide’s DWD survey revealed that 45 percent of respondents had been hit or nearly hit by another driver using a cell phone.

    Need for education
    According to the survey released today, respondents say they are witnessing a growth in distracted driving behavior on the roads, underscoring the importance of public education to raise awareness about this dangerous practice.
  • More than half of respondents say they see more drivers using cell phones while driving than they did 12 months ago.
  • Nearly three-quarters of respondents say that when they drive, they always or often see other drivers using cell phones.

    The importance of technology
    “The new information in this survey also indicates that many drivers are either in denial about their DWD habits or resistant to changing their behavior,” said Windsor. “This suggests that legislation may not be enough to eliminate distracted driving and highlights the need for a technological solution that can prevent cell phone usage in moving vehicles while still allowing people to stay connected.”

    Drivers in denial
    Nearly half (49 percent) of drivers say a law restricting use of cell phones would not change their behavior because they don’t currently use cell phones while driving.
  • When you compare this statistic to Nationwide’s 2008 DWD survey, which revealed that more than 80 percent of drivers admit to talking on their cell phone while driving, it may be the case that some drivers are either in denial or too embarrassed to admit their DWD problem.

    Resistance to new laws
    In the new survey, four out of five respondents (82 percent) who admit to using their cell phones while driving say their behavior would change if cell phone usage were restricted by law.
  • However, 18 percent of respondents who admit to using their cell phones while driving say they would continue to do so regardless of a change in law, with Generation Y most likely to resist the change (26 percent).

    Further evidence that a technological solution is needed comes from Nationwide’s 2008 DWD survey. This study found that 43 percent of drivers believe technological advances that prevent cell phones from working in a moving vehicle would be the most effective solution to DWD.

    Nationwide’s commitment to reducing DWD
    Nationwide is committed to helping customers protect what matters most and that is why the company recently stated its support of the concept of a national ban on texting while driving. In addition to saving lives, fewer DWD related crashes could also result in lower insurance costs for consumers.

    “DWD impacts all of us in one form or another and Nationwide will continue to raise public awareness about this important issue,” said Windsor. “By working closely with legislators, public safety officials and other key stakeholders we can arrive at real-world solutions to this problem and help make the roads a safer place.”

    Survey methodology
    This survey was conducted by Harris Interactive via its National QuorumSM telephone omnibus service. This study was conducted by telephone within the United States between Aug. 5-9, 2009 among a nationwide cross section of 1,008 adults (aged 18 and over). Figures for age, sex, race, and region were weighted where necessary to bring them into line with their actual proportions in the population. The results for the overall sample have a sampling error of +/-3 percentage points at a 95 percent certainty.