Do I NEED Life Insurance in Georgia?

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The past few weeks in the early morning’s quiet peace as I have sipped my hot coffee and scrolled through my social media pages: I’ve been shocked at the tragic news of friends passing away unexpectedly. It’s one of those moments that immediately seems like it has to be a hoax…but, sadly it isn’t. As a Georgia Licensed insurance agent my immediate thought is “I hope they had a life insurance policy”. As a friend my first thought is “I wish I would have bugged the absolute 💩 out of them about getting a life insurance policy”.

Life insurance is often times something that we all know we need but life gets busy, we don’t know how much we need, we perceive it as extremely complicated, we think it’s way too expensive, or frankly we don’t talk about it because that would be acknowledging that death is a reality.

It can be uncomfortable to talk about or even think about your loved one dying, or leaving your loved ones behind when you pass away…honestly it’s devistating for me to think about. Unfortunately this doesn’t change the reality that at any point unbenounced to us, our time here will be done. Statistics show that in the U.S. the VAST MAJORITY of people are horribly underinsured (policies provided by their workplace) OR have NO life insurance at all.

What can Life Insurance do? Simply put it can allow you to focus on saying goodbye to your loved one without having to worry about anything else. In a sentence:
Life Insurance gives you the freedom to grieve.

Life Insurance gives you the freedom to grieve. Click To Tweet

  • It can be used to pay off the remainder of your mortgage.
  • It can be used to pay funeral expenses.
  • It can be used to pay your normal bills/keep all accounts in good standing.
  • It can be used to pay for child care expenses
  • It can replace an income
  • It can help you have freedoms to concentrate on the things that matter during such a difficult time

Life insurance will never be cheaper for you than this year. The rate goes up based on your age and medical history every year. My goal with this post is to get you to call someone – ANYONE – so you can get a policy in place ASAP. We buy insurance for our cell phones for heaven’s sake…commit to protecting the people you love most – that peace of mind is priceless.

I promise you I couldn’t care less if you purchase your life insurance policy from me, another agent in my agency or an agent that works with only one carrier. My goal is to have you get it done – that’s how much I truly believe in what life insurance can do for you, your loved ones and your legacy.
Have questions about life insurance? Schedule a call or meeting with me CLICKING HERE

Much Love,
Woody Brown

July 4th – What does Independence Mean to You?

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Have you ever played the “interesting fact” game at a cocktail party or perhaps in a forced group setting? Ok, I’m not quite sure what it’s called…but basically you go around the room and everyone has to tell the group an interesting fact about themselves that no one would be able to guess about them.
This tends to invoke some serious nail-biting anxiety for a lot of folks, but truthfully this is one of my favorite topics of conversation. Over my lifetime I’ve heard some of the most amazing facts about people that I would have NEVER known.
I’ve been in a group with a woman who was born in the back seat of a New York City taxi cab, a man who was a golden glove boxer in his 20s, a soldier who lost his leg in Iraq (he lifted his pant leg to reveal his artificial limb and everyone’s jaw hit the floor – we had zero idea- btw technology is incredible), a woman who had 6 children under the age of 18 at home, a man who was a nurse at a psychiatric trauma unit for adolescents who used to be in a biker gang. If you’ve never played this do it at your next office party – the unique stories of all of our lives are quite amazing. the unique stories of all of our lives are quite amazing Click To Tweet.
Interesting Fact: I spent a large part of my childhood living overseas, primarily in Indonesia. My father’s job took us there and it was truly an amazing experience. It opened my eyes and sparked my interest into different cultures, religions, culinary exploration, biology, travel and music.

My younger brother and I riding elephants in Indonesia (younger brother on left having the time of his life)

The Indonesian people are beautiful. If I close my eyes tightly I can see their gorgeous smiles, I can hear the busy traffic and horns honking at all times of day, I can smell the Durian and the diesel fuel in the air. I can see the early morning mist on the rice paddies and if I squint and focus hard enough I can see the silhouettes of the farmers who have already been working for hours. I can hear the prayer call from the mosques in the evening that echoed through my neighborhood – my mom used that as our alarm clock to remind us to head home for dinner when we were out playing with our friends. (I often thought she must have talked to the mosques when we moved there JUST to make us come home earlier than our friends…haha). I went to an international school with other children from every corner of the globe, meeting some of the most amazing friends who have gone on to become incredible adults with innovative and world changing businesses.
As I grew older I also came to understand the harsh reality of just how different the world was. I’ll never forget when The Karate Kid debuted on, at that time, Indonesia’s ONE television channel that showed “American” TV shows and Movies. As we were riding back from school you could see children running down the dirt streets in their bare feet huddled around a tiny television screen, some of the littlest ones on the shoulders of their older siblings…just to see this old (to me) movie. Through my time there I began to realize the gravity of what I had in comparison to the many who didn’t. Yet still, I remember their smiles. I learned the term “third world country” and it impacted me drastically. My innocent child eyes were opened. I witnessed the vast difference between governments in real time, up close and in real life. I have seen what happens to people if they want to be their “truth”, I have seen what happens to people if they disagree with a politician or leader.
So, every year on the 4th of July I have a lot of things that I reflect upon.

  1. INDEPENDENCE IS STILL RARE
    Even in 2017 to be independent – to have the power of choice, opinion, individuality, freedom without true consequence is still rare. This is mind-blowing to me. Is our country perfect? NO WAY. But, together we can make it better every single day.
  2. LUCKY – BLESSED – FORTUNATE
    Whatever you want to call it: we Americans are extremely lucky to be here. If you’ve never seen what a third world country child or family in need looks like with your own eyes in person, and are rolling your eyes are jotting a list of excuses that disagree with being lucky, blessed or fortunate…then at the very least please google the data. This isn’t opinion.
  3. OPPORTUNITY
    Our freedom isn’t limited to just what we want to wear daily or what religion we want to pursue or even who we want to love. We have the freedom to CHOOSE who and what we want to be. We have this incredible opportunity to make things happen.  It’s our choice.
  4. GRATEFUL
    My heart is filled with gratitude. Thankful for the men, women and their spouses that sacrifice EVERYTHING for our freedoms daily. The individuals that serve and protect us and may or may not ever get any recognition and certainly won’t get enough/recognition that they truly deserve. I’m grateful for the chance to have opportunity to support my family and to give back. To give back to my own community and to the world. To help in any way that I can.

What Independence means to me is the chance to change the world. The freedom to make those choices on a daily basis. I don’t take these things for granted and my hope is that you won’t and don’t either. Remember when you’re watching the beautiful fireworks this week the words of our National Anthem. Remember what it really means to have the CHOICE to live the American Dream and to give back to those who may need a little help to live that same dream.

Have a safe and wonderful 4th of July. – Woody Brown

travelers championship!

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I just got back from Hartford. I’m so glad to be home! That’s the best part about travel isn’t? Coming back home; seeing your wife and kids; sleeping in your own bed. It’s the best!

Thank you to Travelers for an amazing trip! It was so awesome to have a front row seat when Jordan holed it out to take the trophy. Going to Fenway for Red Sox/Angels on Friday night was amazing as well. However, I’d say the highlight of the trip was playing TPC River Highlands on Monday. They left the pins in the same place the pros played them on Sunday. I had my share of bad shots but overall played pretty well (I birdied #15 after getting up and down out of the right side bunker in the video below 😉

Clayton R.

presidents award

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The Rhoads Group wins Safeco’s Presidents Award! 

2016 was an amazing year and we’re excited to announce another win for The Rhoads Group. There are thousands of agencies nationwide that represent Safeco and we were recognized as the cream of the crop! Less than 3% of Safeco agencies nationwide win Presidents. Even more impressive, only 2 agencies in Georgia were winners. So proud of our team!

Safeco has a special place in my heart for several reasons including that they gave me my first appointment. I’m so thankful for their partnership. There are some amazing people working in this company and it’s an honor to represent them. Thank you to Cindy Lively and Jenny Hepp for helping us start out with a bang in 2014. Thank you to Abram Hoffmeister, Carl Canales, Blythe Millwood and Stacie Couch for helping us take our business to the next level. Most of all, thank you to the best agents in the business (Alex, Corey, Eleazar, Erica, Jake, John, Tracy and Woody) who work so hard to make sure our community is protected.

– Clayton R.


top encompass agency

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Last week The Rhoads Group was recognized by Encompass Insurance as the top producing New Business agency (2016) in Georgia. I’m very honored to accept this award on behalf of our team. Our agency has worked hard to match our customers with top notch insurance carriers who provide a level of service that aligns with our agency’s mission. Encompass has been an amazing partner for us over the last couple years. I’m so thankful for all the support we receive from John Coaker and his team. We look forward to growing this partnership in 2017 and beyond.

– Clayton R.

why did my auto rates increase

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The most common question we’re getting in our industry is “why did my rates go up? ” So I figured I’d blog about it. Exciting right!! Well, the short answer, and I know you like short answers, is premiums have gone up because costs have gone up. End of blog. Too short of an explanation? Okay, well if you want more information, keep reading 😉

Did you know that traffic fatalities rose over 10% last year? Yep, that’s what the National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration says. If true, that’s the greatest year over year increase in 50 years. In the Southeast Region, the increase is even worse. Much worse! 15% year over year in our region to be exact. What’s caused this HUGE increase in traffic fatalities? There are several factors to consider but I’ll only highlight 2. Again, trying to respect your time 😉 Here they are:

  1. Gas prices dropped to a 12 year low in 2016. These lower prices have lead to consumers driving over 3.1 trillion miles. That’s a huge number right? It’s too big of number for us to understand right? Well, all you need to understand is that we’re driving more than ever.
  2. Drivers are more distracted than ever. It’s an epidemic actually. Texting behind the wheel gets most of the blame but there are so many other distractions in the car now. My dashboard looks like a 747 cockpit. I can’t even figure out how to open my sunroof much less turn off my seat warmer after my buns are properly warmed! These fancy car gadgets take our focus off the road don’t they? You bet.

So now you see that people are driving more, paying attention less, and thus getting in more accidents. Compounding the problem is the sky-rocketing cost of auto parts.  Think about it. The rain sensor in your windshield, the sensors in your bumper, the tech in your side mirrors…all this stuff has driven the cost of the average fender bender thru the roof. I know “thru the roof” isn’t exactly hard data but you get the point.

Okay, I’ll stop here. Any more info and you’ll probably be able to pass the state administered Property & Casualty exam! In all seriousness, I hope you now have a better understanding of why auto insurance costs are going up. The best part about doing business with our agency is if you’re unhappy with your policy, including the price, we can “re-market” your account and try to find you something better. Because we already have most of the information we need to do this, this saves you time which SAVES YOU MONEY. #timeismoney

Thanks for reading and I hope you have an amazing day!

Clayton

 

Below is a random picture of me wearing my fantasy football championship belt. One of my life’s greatest achievements!

 

too expensive?

From the Author

 

I love it when I hear “life insurance is too expensive”. Every time I get this response I just ask “too expensive? How much do you think it costs?” Then, maybe I give them a specific dollar amount and say something like “how much do you think $500,000 of protection would cost you?” When asked this, people nearly always overestimate the cost by 50 – 75%. For example, most Millennials can buy $500,000 of protection for about $39/month! That’s crazy isn’t it? I pay more for golf balls! Heck, I pay more for Dutch Monkey Donuts! #thingsthatcostmorethan39dollars would be a great hashtag if it weren’t so long! Sometimes I’ll even ask “if you had $500k in the bank, how many of your buddies would you insure for $39/month?!” I ask this because I know the answer…it’s NONE!

Another point I try to make is in regards to the cost/value of owning a policy. Why do you think the richest people/companies in the world still own life insurance? Because it’s typically a great value even though they may not “need” the coverage (and there are some nice tax benefits they use to transfer wealth ;).

If you’ve never checked out lifehappens.org, you should. It’s a non-profit website designed to educate consumers on what to buy, when to buy, and how much. You’ll also find some good AMAZING real life stories there too like this one. Warning:  Theses videos will move you!

Thanks for reading this and I hope you all have a fantastic week!

Sincerely,

Clayton N. Rhoads

Safeco Insurance® honors The Rhoads Group with membership in the Safeco® Key Agent Program

The Rhoads Group has been selected for membership in the Safeco Key Agent Program, which recognizes the outstanding achievement and partnership of only the best agencies.

Only 10% of independent insurance agencies that sell Safeco personal lines products receive this distinguished honor.

At The Rhoads Group, we are pleased to be among the best in the country!

As a member in the Safeco Key Agent Program, The Rhoads Group will receive access to special resources and programs that will support us in serving our customers even better with expert advice.

We strive to provide our customers with trusted guidance, so this Safeco honor makes us proud.

Click here to receive your no-obligation Safeco quote!