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Since 1946, the Boys and Girls Club has been providing children and families with before- and after-school care, free meals, summer programs and recreational sports.

15,000 youth in Snohomish County achieve academic success, practice healthy lifestyles and build character and leadership skills with the Boys and Girls Clubs. The clubs offer a safe and positive environment that includes countless activities.  Whether it’s needed as a daycare or “landing spot” for kids until parents return from work, or the provider of a fun weekly sport or activity, the Boys and Girls Club has something to offer for families from all walks of life.

Team member, Nathalie Sicotte, took advantage of the Boys and Girls Club‘s Soccer Program last year.

 

“Our town’s Youth Soccer Team doesn’t accept players until they are at least 5 years old, but my son really wanted to play in a  soccer team at age 4.  The Arlington Boys and Girls Club offered a soccer program for very young players, and we gladly signed up and took on the drive to weekly practices.  My boy had a blast, and it was a huge blessing to watch him run, play, and gain confidence.  The practices and games were very well organized, and the coach did an amazing job connecting with the young players and keeping their attention.  I would highly recommend the Boys and Girls Club to parents looking to sign up their kids for a team sport.”

Offering a safe and positive environment conducive to building relationships and self confidence are among the Boys and Girls Clubs main objectives.  YOU can help inspire young people to GREATNESS this month!

This month, simply refer a friend to McClain Insurance Services for an Insurance Policy Review. For every referral, we will make a $25 donation to the Boys and Girls Clubs of Snohomish County.

Please click here to learn more about our Referral Rewards Program.

 

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About McClain Insurance Services    |    www.AutoHomeBoat.com

McClain Insurance Services is an independent insurance agency located in Everett, WA. The agency has represented quality insurance companies (including PEMCO, Safeco, Travelers and Progressive) since 1977.

Independent agents work with you to customize an insurance plan that meets your needs and fits your budget. They can help with all your personal insurance needs: Auto, Home, Renters, Life, Umbrella, Earthquake, Flood, Boat, Motorcycle and RV Insurance.

McClain Insurance Services is a Trusted Choice agency and a member of the Independent Agents Association of America, the Economic Alliance of Snohomish County and the BBB. They are also Charter Members of NSACE – National Society of Agents for Consumer Education.  McClain Insurance is a Washington State Corporations for Communities Award Winner and IIABW Agency of the Year 2013.

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Did you know that April 25th marks World Penguin Day?  We had never heard about this until recently.

If you know us a little, you know that the Penguin is near and dear to our hearts and has earned its status as the McClain Insurance Team Mascot!  The story of the penguin came about almost ten years ago, when we discovered the following story that seemed to describe our team perfectly:

“The Power of Team”

“The flightless fairy penguin of Australia stands less than a foot tall and is clumsy on land, where the fox is its natural enemy.  Alone, one penguin wouldn’t survive for long.  So, after each day in the water, they gather where the surf meets the shore, waiting until the last penguin joins them.  Then, shoulder to shoulder, they march up the beach to their burrows.  

They support each other.  They rely on each other.  And everyone, except the fox, wins.

We’re a stronger team because of you!”

From there on out, the penguin was one of us.  If you see a penguin pin on our lapels, a  mural on our front door, or a penguin supervising our book or toy drives, don’t be surprised.  He’s official!

To celebrate World Penguin Day, we thought we’d share a laugh with you:  Enjoy this cute and funny video of our tuxedo’ed friends!

Happy World Penguin Day!

 

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Confused about battery recycling?  You’re not alone.

If you store a pail or box of dead AA, AAA, C, D and 9-volt batteries in your garage, unsure of where to take them but hesitant to throw them in the garbage, you’re one of us!

Some time ago, the general advice was to recycle all batteries due to their heavy metal and mercury content.  But recent research has found that modern batteries are not actually as dangerous for the environment as they were thought to be.  Even though many waste management institutions have since recommended to dispose of household batteries in the trash, they still contain trace amounts of mercury and should be recycled.

Rechargeable batteries, however, such as the ones found in cell phones, tablets, MP3 players and laptops, are not as easy to deal with.  They contain a chemical mix that’s best recycled.  Contact the device’s manufacturer or your local Battery Store for information on adequate disposal.

Now, car and boat batteries are an entirely different story.  You should NOT dispose of these lead-acid batteries in the garbage, or even store them on your property.  Not only can poisonous substances, including lead, mercury, cadmium, and sulfuric acid leak out of the battery and seep into the ground and water, but car and boat batteries also contain an explosive mix of flammable gases.

That said, battery recycling might just be one of recycling history’s greatest successes!   98% of a battery can be recycled into its components. To this end, approximately 60% – 80% of the components in a brand-new battery are created from recycled lead and plastics!

If you are lucky enough to live near Everett, WA, you are invited to bring all your end-of-life household, car, boat and rechargeable batteries to our E-Cycle Event on Saturday, April 26th for safe and green recycling.

Please visit www.AutoHomeBoat.com/ECycle for more information.

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A little while ago, we pulled aside one of our protection specialists, Laura, for a short “interview”.  This month, please join us as we learn more about Erin Gross.   Erin brings over eight years of experience in the insurance industry.  She joined the McClain team three years ago and she quickly became another agent that our clients know they can trust for sound advice.

Erin is incredibly insurance-savvy and has the unique ability to make a well-rounded protection plan not only thorough but also FUN!

Give her a  call some time and say “Hi” – we know she’d love it!

 

Hi Erin!  Thanks for allowing us to interview you. Why don’t you start by telling us a bit about your family

I’d love to! My husband, Mark, and I have been happily married for seven years, and our 3-year-old daughter Makenna is the light of my life.  She keeps us on our toes, and is definitely a young night owl and midnight reader in the making.  But, who am I to complain about a child who loves books?    We also have a labradoodle named Cash, who we couldn’t imagine life without.

 

And, there is also this brother-in-law of yours, right?

Ha!  How could I forget him?  I actually met (McClain Insurance Agent) Nick Pembroke almost ten years ago through McClain Insurance Services.  I casually arranged for a small Cinco de Mayo gathering to which I invited both Nick and my sister Meghan….

The rest is history, and I’m now the proud Auntie to their young daughter, Ada.  I’ve got to stay on Nick’s good side, though.  After all, he is making my sister very happy!!

Aw!  We LOVE your story and it’s so fun to see the McClain Insurance family bond in action.  Tell us, what inspired you to join the McClain Insurance team?

Well, I’ve always loved and admired Claudia’s caring and sincere way of advising her clients and leading her business.

I worked for a large commercial insurance agency for several years, and I just missed the personal touch and interaction of working directly with individual clients rather than large corporations.  I want to do meaningful work, and I want to help people.  When I can help folks protect their families and the things that matter to them,  I really feel that I am doing something good.  That’s very important to me.

So when Nick told me about the open agent position with McClain Insurance, I was only too happy to put in my resume!

And we’re so glad you did!  You just add a special touch to every call you make, and we just know that our clients are in good hands with you.  How do you do it?

Aw, that’s kind of you to say!  I don’t know what I’m doing, I just try to be thorough and look at a situation from several angles, so I can think through what’s best for the client.

And I like to laugh.  Insurance doesn’t have to be a dry, heartless business.  There is no reason to not have a little fun with everything you do.  I love chatting and laughing with our clients!

So true!  There’s nothing wrong with a little laughter in life.  What else brings you joy?

Aside from Makenna?  Anything that gets us outside enjoying the Pacific Northwest! Local hikes, trips to the beach with Cash, gardening in the sunshine, and snowboarding in the winter.

I also love to be creative with old furniture, or by updating items that we already own.  Upholstering dining room chairs with a cute new fabric or polishing up a dresser with a coat of paint and unique knobs are certainly my idea of a weekend well spent!

 

Come on over to my house anytime – I’d love to enjoy some updated style!  Last but not least, would you share with us how you decided to invest your 16 paid community service hours that McClain Insurance offers each team member?

Absolutely! I decided to get involved with the YWCA’s Working Wardrobe Program.  This is basically a unique clothing 
bank that offers free, business-appropriate attire to homeless or low-income women in need of clothing for interviews or new jobs.

These women are on their way out of truly desperate situations, often fighting racism, abuse and violence while caring for their children.  The YWCA not only provides shelter and assistance for these brave ladies, but also programs to guide them to a life of hope, self-sufficiency and independence.  The YWCA Working Wardrobe Program offers free, work-appropriate clothing to empower women to make a good impression and feel good about themselves.

As a working mother, I feel I can very much relate to these women.  I love volunteering for this cause, not only as a donor of professional attire, but also as an encourager and cheerleader!

This month, clients can support the YWCA simply by referring a friend to us for an insurance review.  McClain Insurance will donate $25 per referral to the YWCA>

Wow!  What a great cause – thank you for introducing “your” charity of choice to us!

Many thanks for your time and thank you for all that you do, Erin! 

 

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Inspired by National Reading Month, our Referral Rewards Program, and our agents’ dedication to helping foster a love of books and literature in young students, the McClain Insurance Team decided to host a book drive during the month of March in support of local elementary schools.

Many of our clients loved the idea and dropped off favorite new and gently used children’s books.  Some brought one book, others brought dozens.

Our deepest thanks to all our many generous donors, especially to the Snell Family and our favorite local children’s book author, Trudi Trueit, for their wonderful contributions to encourage young readers!  Over 200 used books were collected from the community, in addition to almost three dozen brand new, hand-signed books by Trudi Trueit.

When the tragic mudslide in Oso, WA happened, we were are all in utter shock and disbelief over this terrible event.  The sadness and loss experienced by the Oso / Darrington community are unimaginable. Our thoughts and prayers especially go out to the children whose lives have been so disrupted!

Books bring hope, joy and inspiration.  We immediately decided to donate all the books collected in our Book Drive to Darrington elementary students.  In addition, all funds raised for the Sno-Isle Libraries Foundation as part of our Referral Rewards Program (a total of $450) will be allocated to the Darrington Branch Library.

May the love for this community be tangible in every page of the donated books!

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Please meet our April “Charity of the Month” – the Seattle / King / Snohomish YWCA!

The YWCA is particularly dear to our team member, Erin Gross, who has decided to dedicate her 16 paid community services hours with McClain Insurance to the YWCA’s Working Wardrobe Program.  The Working Wardrobe functions as a unique clothing bank that offers free, business-appropriate attire to homeless or low-income women in need of clothing for interviews or new jobs.

By offering free, work-appropriate clothing, this program helps to empower women to make a good impression and feel good about themselves.

“As a working mother, I feel I can very much relate to these women” explains Erin.  “I love volunteering for this cause, not only as a donor of professional attire, but also as an encourager and cheerleader!”

With over 120 service years in Seattle, the YWCA has been the leading organization in bringing women and their families from a life of crisis and violence to renewed hope.  By providing safety, housing, jobs and opportunities, the YWCA has put an end to discrimination and abuse, and empowered women to self-sufficiency and lasting independence.

It’s by living a life of example that these women become able to lead their children out of the circle of poverty, and inspire confidence and greatness.

What sets the YWCA apart?

Inspiration, vision, experience and dedication to excellence!

Do you believe in a community where:

  • All women and families have a safe and stable place to live?
  • All adults are economically self-sufficient?
  • All children and youth develop the skills they need for successful lives?
  • All people live with dignity—free from violence, racism and discrimination?

This month, you can help bring our society just a little bit closer to making this dream a reality.  Here’s how:

Simply refer a friend to McClain Insurance Services for an Insurance Policy Review. For every referral, we will make a $25 donation to the YWCA.
Please click here to learn more about our Referral Rewards Program.

If you are satisfied with our service, your referrals are the biggest compliment you can give us!

For more information, or to request an insurance review, please visit us at www.AutoHomeBoat.com!

 

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About McClain Insurance Services    |    www.AutoHomeBoat.com

McClain Insurance Services is an independent insurance agency located in Everett, WA. The agency has represented quality insurance companies (including PEMCO, Safeco, Travelers and Progressive) since 1977.

Independent agents work with you to customize an insurance plan that meets your needs and fits your budget. They can help with all your personal insurance needs: Auto, Home, Renters, Life, Umbrella, Earthquake, Flood, Boat, Motorcycle and RV Insurance.

McClain Insurance Services is a Trusted Choice agency and a member of the Independent Agents Association of America, the Economic Alliance of Snohomish County and the BBB. They are also Charter Members of NSACE – National Society of Agents for Consumer Education.  McClain Insurance is a Washington State Corporations for Communities Award Winner and IIABW Agency of the Year 2013.

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McClain Insurance Services is gearing up to host its third community E-Cycle Event this spring!

The public is invited to bring old computers & laptops, electronics and small appliances to a FREE E-Cycle Event on Saturday, April 26th, 2014 from 9am until 1pm at the McClain Insurance office at 10410 19th Ave SE in Everett (just South of Costco.)

“We’ve received countless inquiries about upcoming electronics recycling events,” explains Claudia McClain.  “We feel honored that our community appreciates this service, and we are excited to help make life easier for our neighbors!”

A crew of helpers will stand ready to assist customers with unloading their recyclables to ensure a smooth traffic flow.

E-Cycling helps significantly in reducing the environmental impact of outdated technology.  While consumers invest in technology upgrades, over 82% of rejected electronic devices fill up landfills and incinerators, releasing mercury, lead, cadmium and other harmful substances. Electronics recyclers such as event partner, E-Waste, LLC, disassemble each item into its components for re-use and thus significantly reduce the impact of tech waste around the world.

Desktop Computers (including monitors, mice and keyboards), laptops, tablets, TVs, cell phones and miscellaneous cables can be recycled FREE of charge. Simply drop them off at the event.

Printers, VCRs, DVD players, stereos, small microwaves and various other household electronics that are NOT covered under the Washington State program will be accepted for a $5 fee.  At this time, washers / dryers, refrigerators and/or AC Units cannot be accepted.

For more information about the event, please visit www.AutoHomeBoat.com/ECycle or call 425-379-9200.

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About McClain Insurance    –    www.AutoHomeBoat.com

McClain Insurance Services is an independent insurance agency located in Everett, WA. The agency has represented a number of regional and national insurance companies (including PEMCO, Safeco, Travelers and Progressive) since 1977.

Independent agents work with you to customize an insurance plan that meets your needs and fits your budget. They can help with all your personal insurance needs: Auto, Home, Renters, Life, Umbrella, Earthquake, Flood, Boat, Motorcycle and RV Insurance.

McClain Insurance Services is a Trusted Choice agency and a member of the Independent Agents Association of America, the Economic Alliance of Snohomish County, and the BBB. They are also Charter Members of NSACE – National Society of Agents for Consumer Education.

About E-Waste, LLC    –    www.e-wastes.com

E-Waste, LLC has been committed to being environmentally friendly and safe since its inception in 2006.  Staying ahead of the curve and continuously striving to exceed industry standards, E-Waste was the first State certified E-Cycle Collector, Transporter, and Processor as well as the only R2 certified electronics recycler in Snohomish County, and the 3rd in Washington State.

E-Waste is member of the WA State E-Cycle Program, WMMFA, and is R2 Certified to assure customers that electronics are being recycled responsibly.  “Certificates of Destruction” are available upon request for a small fee to insure that customers’ sensitive information is safe.

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Spring is around the corner, and many of us experience “spring cleaning fever!”  If you are feeling the itch to organize but have too much stuff to fit into your home, you’re not alone.  About 10% of American households are seeking clutter-relief by renting a storage unit.  However, if your stuff matters to you, packing it up and moving it is only part of the solution: “If an item is valuable enough that you are willing to pay for storing it, the item should be financially protected with the proper amount and type of insurance,” said Loretta Worters, vice president for the Insurance Information Institute (I.I.I.)

To protect yourself (and your stuff), take these steps before you sign the storage contract and start moving your boxes:

1.  Choose a Quality Facility

Select your facility not only based on convenience, but on safety!  Drive further for a safer neighborhood.  A fully fenced property with restricted access reflects the minimum safety features your unit should offer.  24-hour video-surveillance, coded security pads (for the building AND your floor) and strategically placed cameras throughout the building (not just at the entrance) are important safety measures.   A little time invested in making calls and interviewing managers can tell you a lot about a facility.

2.  Is it clean? Is it climate-controlled? Is it dry?

A well-maintained facility will not only be clean, but will also be regularly monitored for rodents and bugs.  Don’t hesitate to ask to see the contract with a pest control company to verify that the storage facility is routinely inspected.

Can you control the temperature in your unit or is it centrally managed?  Depending on what you’re planning to store, it may be worth the investment to have your own thermostat in your unit.

Make sure that water (either from above or from rising groundwater due to weather) cannot enter your storage unit.

3. Got Insurance?

Educate yourself about the storage facility’s insurance policy:  What is their policy in case of a fire, theft or other loss?  Read the fine print and don’t hesitate to ask questions such as ‘What are the coverage limits per tenant?’ or ‘Is there an exclusion or cap for high-value items that are being stored in the unit?’

It is wise to give your insurance agent a call to find out what your own homeowners or renters insurance policy might cover.  Some home/ renters insurance policies cover personal property off-premise, away from the insured home.  Other policies cover personal property only up to 10% of the total insured value when it’s off the insured premises.

Keep in mind that your personal insurance only extends for “covered perils” – that means losses that would be covered if they happened at your home.  Covered perils usually include theft, fire, windstorms and other disasters listed in your contract.

Damage or losses caused by flooding, earthquake, mold or mildew, vermin or lack of maintenance are NOT covered on a standard home or renters policy in your home or off-premise.  You may need to purchase additional coverage for adequate protection.

Educate yourself whether your insurance policy offers protection for “actual cash value” or “replacement cost.”  An actual cash value policy will only provide coverage for the depreciated value of your property.  A replacement cost policy will pay to replace the item at the time of loss.  Replacement cost policies tend to be slightly more expensive but provide a better value in the long run.

What if you don’t have homeowners or renters insurance?  Many self-storage facilities offer insurance protection for your stored contents.  These policies, however, tend to be far less broad than a homeowners or renters insurance policy and offer less value for your insurance dollar.  Again, read the fine print, coverage limits, and policy exclusions.

Confused? No worries – this is what we are here for.  An independent insurance agent can assist you with adequate coverage for your personal possessions at home and in a storage unit.

4.  Document, document, document

One of the best ways to protect your personal property is to create an inventory.  This can be as easy as snapping pictures! (Our new McClain Insurance App can help with that! It allows you to take pictures, then  create and share reports that can be as detailed as you wish.  Click here for more information!)

In your home, go from room to room and take pictures of your furniture, art and electronics.  Don’t forget the content of drawers, cabinets and closets.

For your storage unit, document your personal property as you pack it.  It also might be helpful to snap a few pictures of the actual unit with your items in it.

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All our team members are excited about the recent launch of our new McClain Insurance Agent app!  We find it so versatile and helpful that we recommend it to all our smartphone-carrying clients!

Here’s why:

Besides storing your Car Insurance policy and vehicle info (including your electronic ID Card), it offers one-of-a-kind Accident Assistance that allows you to compile and share pictures, facts, names and reports of an accident and helps you find the nearest towing company!

If your household owns and insures multiple vehicles, track their information on your phone and have access to everything you need to know.

That’s not all!  With your mobile device in hand, our app allows you to build an effortless Home Inventory that may come in handy for claims or estate planning.   No time?  Simply snap a picture of each room in your home as you walk through.  A little more time? Open drawers and cabinet doors and take pictures of the content.  Ready for perfection?  Add a detailed description and valuation to your photos.  But remember that even a simple picture can go a long way when filing reports in case of a loss or claim.

The app even allows you to build a report and share it with your spouse, insurance company – or your favorite insurance agent!

Ready to download?  Call or email us with your preferred email address and we will send you a secure link to the app.  Complete the easy sign-up process, and your “Mobile Insurance Agent” stands ready to serve you!

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About McClain Insurance Services    |    www.AutoHomeBoat.com

McClain Insurance Services is an independent insurance agency located in Everett, WA. The agency has represented quality insurance companies (including PEMCO, Safeco, Travelers and Progressive) since 1977.

Independent agents work with you to customize an insurance plan that meets your needs and fits your budget. They can help with all your personal insurance needs: Auto, Home, Renters, Life, Umbrella, Earthquake, Flood, Boat, Motorcycle and RV Insurance.

McClain Insurance Services is a Trusted Choice agency and a member of the Independent Agents Association of America, the Economic Alliance of Snohomish County and the BBB. They are also Charter Members of NSACE – National Society of Agents for Consumer Education.  McClain Insurance is a Washington State Corporations for Communities Award Winner and IIABW Agency of the Year 2013.

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