Monthly Archives: January 2016

How Much Life Insurance Do I Need?

The biggest problem I’ve noticed in the insurance industry is people want life insurance, but with all of the variables and unexpected costs, they have no idea how much coverage they actually need. Having the correct amount of coverage is extremely important. With not enough coverage you could leave your family in debt, and with too much coverage you’ll be paying too much of your hard earned money on monthly premiums! That’s why with help from our friends at Nationwide, I’ve created an easy way for you to calculate exactly how much coverage you and your family needs.

Let’s use Jane Smith as an example. She’s a single mother with a 13-year-old daughter named Sara.

  • Jane has a mortgage on her home and she still owes $180,000.
  • She makes $40,000 a year, and if something were to happen to her, she wants her daughter to have half of her yearly income for the next 5 years. $80,000 divided by 2 multiplied by 5 years = $100,000.
  • Sara dreams of going to college in California, and Jane wants to make sure if she’s not around to pay tuition Sara can still go to college. Let’s assume that tuition will continue to steadily rise and when Sara goes to college it will cost $30,000 a year. $30,000 a year for 4 years = $120,000.
  • Jane has $4,500 in credit card debt that she does not want to leave behind for Sara to have to deal with.
  • Jane wants to leave Sara an emergency fund for unexpected expenses such as a new roof for the house or new engine for the car. Experts suggest 3 months of income for your emergency fund. $40,000 divided by 12 multiplied by 3 = $10,000.
  • Jane also wants her funeral to be paid for by her life insurance. The average cost of a funeral is just over $8,000 let’s round it to $9,000 to be safe.

Now we’ll add all of this up to determine her family’s need which = $423,500

Now we’ll subtract her assets from the total to determine how much of her family’s need is not covered.

  • Jane has a life insurance policy through her job which is worth $100,000.
  • Jane also has $11,000 in her savings account.

$423,500 – $111,000 = $312,500

Now we have done all of the math and we know Jane needs a $312,500 life insurance policy to fully protect her family. Of course not many people want to do all of this math for themselves, so that’s where I come in! I’m more than happy to sit down with anyone and go over their finances to make sure their family is protected. If you have any questions or concerns give me a call today: (209)410-0270.

by Dylan Delhart, Financial Advisor @ insureCAL Insurance Agency

4 Businesses That Have Life Insurance To Thank For Their Success

Everyone knows that life insurance will pay out a benefit when the insured passes on, but most people don’t know the other benefits of having life insurance. One of the greatest things about life insurance is the ability to borrow money from the policy.


Foster Farms Everyone knows and loves Foster Farms chicken, but did you know that Max and Verda Foster payed for their first farm with money borrowed from a life insurance policy? In 1939 the Fosters borrowed $1,000 from their life insurance to purchase 80 acres of land in Modesto and began raising chickens. This investment led to the creation of Foster Farms.


JC Penney James Penney incorporated his clothing store in 1913, 16 years before the great depression. When the depression struck it destroyed his wealth and almost ended his franchise. He was able to borrow from his Life insurance policy to pay his employees and keep his business afloat. Had he not had life insurance we most likely would not be able to shop at JC Penney today.


McDonalds Ray Krok bought out the McDonald’s brothers and took over the franchise in 1961. During the early years of the company he constantly had cash shortages. On 2 occasions he had to borrow money from his life insurance to cover the salaries of employees.


Disneyland Walt Disney had a dream to create a nice clean amusement park where families could come together and enjoy themselves. He was unable to get the financing he needed to open Disneyland, so he decided to finance it himself. Most of the money used to create the first Disneyland came from the cash value of his life insurance policy. If Walt had not had life insurance, Disneyland may have never been built.


by Dylan Delhart, Financial Advisor @insureCAL

I didn’t buy a Powerball lottery ticket and here’s why:

Yesterday, a friend of mine was telling me that he was going to buy a Powerball lottery ticket on his lunch break. I thought about it and figured I’ll go spend $2 to be a part of the fun,”why not”. Then I began thinking about the consequences of publicly winning a billion dollars and here’s WHY NOT:

You can’t remain anonymous.

There are only 6 states that the laws allow you to remain anonymous. Since California is not one of those states, that is my 1st why not. The 6 States that allow you to remain anonymous are Delaware, Kansas, Maryland, North Dakota, Ohio, and South Carolina.

Your life will never be the same.

I love my life. Just the way it is. It might not be “perfect”, I might not have the money I want (and sometimes “need”) and there could be fewer bills, less cleaning and less laundry, but when you look at the big picture we all have awesome lives. Great friends of our choosing and great family-not always of our choosing. The facts, almost 70% of lottery winners end up broke after 7 years. Even worse, some have committed suicide after their lives were turned upside down.

You will never know who to trust.

People will come from everywhere to be your best friend. Yes, you have the friends you talked to everyday before you became a billionaire, but after a while of fending off all of those long lost high school friends you do not remember, you will begin questioning your closest friends. Are you certain they don’t like you even a little more now that you can take them to one of your three houses on Lake Como?


I enjoy walking to the grocery store while on the phone with a friend and not being bothered by anyone at that grocery store. I also enjoy that the craziest person posting pictures of my 3 month old baby on the Internet is my Mother. Most lottery winners have been robbed or attempted to be robbed. I am paranoid enough walking around with $122 cash in a $400 wallet. Let alone everyone in the country knowing I just won a BILLION dollars. You would need a compound, 24/7 body guards, and probably a moat around it all.

I wouldn’t trade all of those things for every rare, vintage Ferrari and Alfa Romeo, all of the houses in Italy, Greece, Switzerland, or for the court side seats at Wimbledon (or even the press box with John McEnroe commentating in it) Now, let’s all get out there and work towards earning the money we will feel good about spending and enjoying the awesome lives we get to live!

Basics of Your Personal Auto Insurance Coverages

Unsure of exactly what all of those numbers and coverage’s mean on your Auto Insurance policy?

Here’s a quick list and explanation of the basics:

BI/Bodily Injury Liability:

Covers bodily injuries that are caused by you/your vehicle to others

PD/Property Damage:

Covers the damage that you/your vehicle causes to other parties vehicle or property

UMBI/Uninsured motorist Bodily Injury:

Covers you and those in your vehicle if injured by an uninsured or under-insured motorist

UMPD/Uninsured Motorist Property Damage: (this coverage is when you do NOT have physical damage coverage)

Covers the damage done to your vehicle by an uninsured or under-insured motorist (only covers up to $3500 in damage)

CDW/Collision Deductible Waiver: (this coverage is when you DO have physical damage coverage)

Waives your deductible when damage was caused by an uninsured or under-insured motorist

Medical Expense:

Covers yourself and those in your vehicle when the accident is AT FAULT.

Comprehensive Deductible:

Amount that insured is responsible for if the vehicle is vandalized, stolen, etc (anything other than collision)

Collision Deductible:

Amount that insured is responsible for if the vehicle is involved in a collision

Insurance: When Cheap Isn’t Always Best

by Patrick Ramsay

While shopping for home or automotive insurance, it’s easy to become overwhelmed by the waves of insurance companies all vying for your business. The word “cheap” is used so often in the insurance market, it’s hard to recall its meaning as you peruse the various options online and hear commercials boasting about the newest, cheapest rates being offered.

There’s a psychological phenomenon known as semantic satiation, in which a person repeats a word or phrase so many times that it temporarily loses its meaning and begins sounding like repeated meaningless sounds. It could be argued that’s what has happened in the insurance market with the word “cheap.” We hear more about cheap insurance than about quality insurance, so naturally we tend to believe the cheaper the deal on the insurance, the more desirable it is. However, what we forget to realize is that cheaper isn’t always better. In fact, when we’re talking about insurance, cheaper is hardly ever better.

Less coverage means less protection. When it comes to insurance, you’re going to get what you pay for. Are lower monthly payments worth potentially being hung out to dry when you need quality coverage most?

Raising your deductible means more out-of-pocket. While you may see a decrease in the cost of a monthly payment by raising your deductibles, when the time comes to use your policy you will have to pay a large sum of money out-of-pocket to cover your repair.

Low cost oftentimes means low quality. When it comes to insurance, it’s tempting to choose the cheapest option. After buying a home or a car, it’s only natural to seek out ways to save, but your insurance coverage is not the place. A quality insurance company will offer attentive customer service and go the extra mile to take care of their customers and help them save money without cutting corners.

    insureCAL offers combined Home and Auto Insurance packages to utilize your insurance policies for the best coverage possible. By combining your home and auto insurance policies, you may be eligible for various discounts, a guaranteed full-year policy term for your car, On Your Side® insurance protection, 24-hour Customer and Claim service, and more. You deserve insurance that brings you peace of mind. Contact insureCAL to find out more about our Home and Auto Insurance packages.

9 Reasons Employers Should Offer Life Insurance

Positive employees make for a positive business. So, how can you ensure your employees start each Monday with a positive foot forward? Offer them peace of mind. In an increasingly hectic world, you can’t put a price on peace of mind, and it’s even harder to achieve. However, you can ensure peace of mind in your employees with something as simple and cheap as offering life insurance. So, why should you offer life insurance to your employees?

  1. Your employees want it! According to recent surveys within the private sector 97% of employees offered Life insurance choose to enroll.
  1. Less payroll and income taxes. If all the requirements are met, the cost of the premiums for the first $50,000 of group-term life insurance isn’t included in the employee’s gross income.
  1. Employee retention. Employees with quality life insurance are less likely to take seasonal jobs or leave the company altogether, saving the employer turnover expenses.
  1. Increased morale. For many workers, good benefits are the difference between a job and a career. Employees with life insurance generally feel more essential to their workplace and may feel the desire to go above and beyond expectations.
  1. More appealing job offers. Any employer will tell you how important good employees are. Quality employees are hard to come by these days. By simply offering life insurance, your business can compete with the power houses for the best employees.
  1. You could be a hero. The difficulties surrounding the death of their primary wage earner oftentimes extend beyond the initial mourning and emotional distress of the death. Without life insurance the family could be subject to serious financial hardships. The monthly premiums are minuscule compared to the immense benefits. Although no amount of money could replace a loved one, it’s much easier to recover emotionally when you’re not worried about coming up with thousands of dollars for funeral expenses.
  1. It’s inexpensive. Term life insurance costs less than your daily cup of coffee! If someone could offer you peace of mind for a price that low, wouldn’t you be interested? Life insurance is one of the cheapest forms of insurance to purchase, which is marvelous considering how important it is.
  1. It’s easy to get! Many employers are intimidated by the amount of paperwork involved with getting life insurance. While the hassle may seem daunting, our life insurance professionals are prepared to streamline the process and take care of the tedious tasks that surround getting enrolled in a life insurance program.
  1. Increased productivity. A recent study by economists at Warwick University, discovered that happy employees saw an increase in productivity of 12%, while unhappy workers were 10% less productive. The happier, more appreciated your employees feel, the more inclined they will be to bring that positive attitude to work with them. Every employer knows that both positivity and negativity are infectious in the workplace. By offering life insurance, you’re contributing to a more positive work environment because every employee knows that happiness in the workplace starts with their employer.

Contact Dylan Delhart at InsureCAL to talk about the best life insurance options for your employees.


by Dylan Delhart and Patrick Ramsay

Nut Theft in California

By Patrick Ramsay

If you’re unfamiliar with the phrase ”nut heist,” it might bring to mind images of something like the movie Oceans 11 playing out on a pistachio farm. However, if you’re one of the hardworking nut farmers of California’s Central Valley, you know a nut heist is far more serious than that. A nut heist is a complex, organized, large-scale act of crime, and in recent years, California’s tree nut industry has suffered millions of dollars in losses due to these organized nut heists.


In one common technique, thieves fabricate shipping documents to pose as truck drivers and pick up cargo loads of tree nuts that can be worth upwards of $500,000 depending on the type of nut. While some of the stolen nuts have been tracked down within storefronts, bakeries, and farmer’s markets around the US, law enforcement officials believe organized criminal enterprises are sending cargo loads of nuts to the export market as well.

In response to a recent rash of these nut heists, the California’s tree nut industry is taking action. On Dec. 3, growers, processors and law enforcement gathered at the Emergency Nut Theft Summit in Visalia, California, to discuss the best ways to combat nut theft.


Nut growers have been using various methods to prevent loss of their produce and safeguard their protocols. These methods include fingerprinting and doing a more thorough, in-person check of the truck drivers who come to pick up the loads of tree nuts. Some nut processors are also using GPS in the cargo loads to track the shipments if they go off course. A nut heist is very hard to recognize and harder to stop. Growers, processors, and truck drivers are encouraged to be vigilant, as this is not the kind of crime that can be recognized outright and immediately most of the time. What are some solutions you can think of to stop these nut thieves?


The Bittersweet Relief of Godzilla El Niño in California

By Patrick Ramsay

The infamous weather pattern, El Niño, meaning “the child” in Spanish, first got its name because it was discovered on Christmas. This year, El Niño is bringing a much needed gift to Californians: rain. We aren’t talking about a light drizzle either, we’re talking about a weather pattern so epic, it has earned the title “Godzilla.” Essentially, it is the slight warming of the Pacific Ocean causing a change in the weather patterns every few years. A powerful El Niño is described by a 1.5 degree Celsius change, but this year we were seeing temperatures in the Pacific already 3 degrees C above normal by September.

Drought Relief

California has been suffering from a drought for the last four years and will be the greatest beneficiary of this year’s El Niño. We’re already seeing signs of relief from the drought in the Sierra Nevada snowpack. Roughly 30 percent of California’s water supply comes from the runoff of this snowpack. During the first manual survey of the winter snowpack, officials with the California Cooperative Snow Surveys Program for the Department of Water Resources (DWR) say it’s currently at 136 percent of normal. Around the same time last year, the snowpack was only at 45 percent of the historical average, so officials with the DWR are saying it’s a very promising sign.

el niño

1997 El Niño Twins

According to NASA, this year’s El Niño bears an uncanny resemblance to that of the powerful 1997 El Niño, and it’s continuing to grow. Forecasters expect California to start seeing the effects of Godzilla El Niño in early 2016. Bill Patzert, Climatologist for Jet Propulsion Laboratories, said “Reservoir levels have fallen to record or near-record lows, while groundwater tables have dropped dangerously in many areas. Now we’re preparing to see the flip side of nature’s water cycle — the arrival of steady, heavy rains and snowfall.”


Side Effects of Godzilla El Niño

In 1997, the strong El Niño brought twice the average amount of rainfall to Southern California. While the El Niño weather cycle brings watery relief to the drought-stricken state of California, it has also been known to bring mudslides, floods, high winds, lightning strikes and high surfs along with it. How are you preparing for Godzilla El Niño’s intensity?