Fall In Love With This Dessert

When it comes to enjoying a variety of flavors and foods, there’s no better season to do that than fall. It’s the time of year when fall desserts are the star of the show, and pumpkin flavored everything comes out. And much like the leaves that change color, our palettes evolve in the fall, allowing us to explore new foods, new ingredients and new experiences when it comes to eating.

We at Western Mutual would love to share a holiday favorite recipe that’s perfect for this season; Pumpkin Sugar Cookies.

What you’ll need:

2 1/4 c. all-purpose flour     1/2 tsp. salt

2 sticks softened butter       1 1/4 c. granulated sugar

1/2 c. pumpkin puree           1 large egg

2 tsp. pure vanilla extract    1 tsp. baking soda

1 tsp. pumpkin pie spice

How to:

Preheat oven to 350° and line two large baking sheets with parchment paper. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, pumpkin pie spice, and salt.

In a large bowl using a hand mixer, beat butter, sugar, pumpkin, egg, and vanilla until combined. Add dry ingredients and stir until just combined.

Scoop a tablespoon of cookie dough then roll in sugar. Transfer to prepared baking sheet and repeat with remaining dough, spacing cookies 2 inches apart.

Bake until cookies are lightly golden, about 10 minutes. Let cool completely.

For the frosting mix 1 block of softened cream cheese, 2 cups powder sugar,  1tsp. vanilla extract and ¼ tsp. cinnamon. Mix thoroughly and spread atop each cookie to your desire.

For this recipe and others, visit www.delish.com

Your To-Do List

Just like your car, your home requires routine preventative maintenance to keep its systems running safely and smoothly. Know the tasks that you should complete as we start this new season and prepare your property to endure colder weather. Below you will find our checklist of items that you want to inspect which will hopefully help you prevent a homeowner’s insurance claim.

·       Have heating inspected – Having a licensed heating professional check your system before use, would certify that your device presents no hazards or potential flammability.
·       Winterize A/C and prepare heating – Our beloved AC unit has worked hard all summer, protect it against rain and snow by covering with a poly-tarp.
·       Turn off/flush outdoor water faucets – Emptying out water lines and pipes will prevent them from being frozen and breaking during the cold season.
·       Flush-unused faucets/toilets occasionally – Flushing unused water lines or toilets should be done weekly as odors and gases can travel through the draining and bring severe odors into the home.
·       Check fireplace for damage or hazards – Aside from having it professionally swept, check the foundation and outside for damage, debris that may have fallen on top of vent and that surrounding area is free of dried leaves/plants.

We hope your family enjoys a wonderful fall and winter season, safe and warm from your home.

Saving Your Home & Your Loved Ones

According to the National Fire Protection Association, nearly 358,500 house fires occur each year in the United States. These fires cause an annual average of 560 civilian deaths and $1.4 billion in direct property damage.

Any fire at home is a scary thought, but luckily there are things you can do yourself at home to prevent the risk of a fire from ever starting. While accidents can happen, learning how to avoid a fire from starting or knowing what to do to prevent it from spreading throughout your home is vital.

Below we have shared a few areas of your home that you may need to check or cleanout to ensure that you have completed your task of at-home prevention.

  1. Smoke detector/CO-2: Replace the batteries in your smoke/CO alarms periodically. House fires can spread from room to room in a matter of seconds. A disconnected smoke/CO alarm or one with dead batteries increases the possibility of a total loss of your home and a potentially life-threatening situation.
  2. Electrical System: Make sure all of your outlets and lighting switches are secure with no loose wires hanging. Check your circuit outlets as well in your kitchen, bathroom, garage, etc. You can test them by pressing the “test” button followed by pushing the “reset” button. These are usually found behind large appliances and other areas of the home where there are chances of an electrical surge.
  3. Chimney Sweep: The build-up of soot and debris can accumulate in a chimney, causing a fire hazard if not cleared out. Always make sure flammable items like blankets and curtains are pushed away from an open flame.
  4. Clean Vents & Fans: A clogged dryer vent is one of the most common causes of home fires. With a dryer vent brush, sweep both sides of the surface of the dryer screen and inside the tube. A clean fan screen above your kitchen stove can help prevent the potential for grease fires, a necessity for your home and family’s safety.
  5. Exposed Lightbulbs: Lights without a protective cover are a fire safety concern since some bulbs (depending on the wattage) can burn upwards of 200-500 degrees Fahrenheit.  A loose piece of clothing or curtain blowing in the wind can land on a lit bulb and cause a house fire.

The Leaves Begin To Fall

Chilly mornings, hot drinks, cozy sweaters and spooky movies are tell-tale signs that fall is here. During this time of year we celebrate several holidays and some even gain an hour of sleep. From Halloween to Thanksgiving all the way up to the winter solstice, it’s arguably one of our favorite seasons. Let us know your favorite thing about this time of year and may the leaves begin to fall.

Return On Investment

The word is out! Some are calling it a “Seller’s Market,” and if that is true for the real estate sector you currently own in, you may be considering a move. Keep reading if you are looking for some quick and easy (especially on your wallet) ways to boost your current house’s value. These are 7 easy tips that’ll position you to sell faster than others.

First and foremost, take care of the front door. The old saying that “You don’t get a second chance to make a first impression,” is especially true when the entry point to someone’s forever-home starts at the door. This can be done with a fresh coat of paint, new doorknob or splurge a little and buy a new unit.

Next in line is your front lawn. Keep it simple when it comes to your lawn. Buyers, of course, respond poorly when they see a neglected front yard, but they have also been known to immediately talk themselves out of a house where the landscaping looks too expensive to maintain. Safe bet? Make sure your front landscape looks comparable to the nicer homes in your neighborhood, healthy and easily maintained for the win.

Along with painting the front door, make sure you brush over the house as well. This goes for inside and out. A fresh coat of paint is a wonderfully inexpensive way to increase the value of your current home. Choose neutral shades to appeal to the most significant number of potential buyers instead of choosing bright, impactful colors that may only attract a few people’s interests.

Arguably one if the most over looked details is cabinet hardware, remember that details matter. These minor enhancements won’t cost you a fortune and have a more considerable impact than what you think in the buyer’s mind.

Let there be light! Clean or replace outdated light fixtures, including outlet and switch plates. Updating indoor and outdoor lighting will immediately affect how potential buyers experience the home you are selling.

If you plan to leave appliances to the next homeowner, try to have them match or at least be the same name brand. Noticeably clashing or mismatched, especially large appliances like your refrigerator and dishwasher, can give the impression that one recently broke down and the next may soon follow.

Finally, if you want to go the extra mile…consider crown molding to add some pizazz that will impress potential buyers.

We hope these tips spark some ideas and encourage you to make the necessary changes to sell your home fast.

Low Rates, Superior Coverage

When it comes to protecting your home with a reliable and preferred carrier, we’ve got you covered.

As a rated A+ insurance company by AM BEST, we offer great coverage for the lowest rate possible and believe it or not, we even offer additional discounts that’ll bring your rate lower!

One way of bringing your cost down is by installing a monitored security system. Installing a home security system is a great way to qualify for a home protection discount.

Another method of lowering your premium is by installing a Wi-Fi water detection system. This device would track the water usage in your home and alert you at the first sign of excess water flow, essentially saving you from a costly water claim. Many insurance carriers offer a discount for this and even an additional percentage off for remaining claims free after a certain amount of years.

A simple way to earn some credit is by going green. Many companies are giving discounts as in incentive for paperless billing and communication. This is something that is easily accessible from your phone or tablet, so why not save some cash?

And of course, raising your deductible seems a bit frightening but many responsible homeowners know that a small increase could mean a big reduction.

See what discounts you qualify for by giving us a call today at 1-800-234-2114, our customer service reps are ready to assist you Monday through Friday 8:00AM to 5:00PM PST.

One-Click Savings

What if we told you that switching your homeowners insurance could save you money now, without having to wait for your renewal?

 That’s right! Switching mid-term is penalty free and could potentially put some money back in your wallet. Don’t forget the holiday season is right around the corner.

Give us a call to receive a free no-obligation quote at 877-WMUTUAL (877-968-8825) or if you prefer to go online, click and save with your new homeowners insurance policy at www.westernmutual.com        

Even if you have an existing policy that is in the middle of its term, we will advise you on how to cancel and get a pro-rated refund from your current carrier when you switch to us.

Licensed agents are ready to help you Monday through Friday, 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM PST/PDT

Saving Our Planet, One Bill At A Time

Stacking, filing and flinging paper around, isn’t as fun as it sounds. In fact, it’s quite a nuisance in life’s rigmarole. But besides your sanity, the amount of paper you choose to use impacts several other aspects of your life:

  • Environment – The average household’s bills, statements and payments add up to 6.6 pounds of paper per year, according to the Pay It Green Alliance!
  • Security – A paper trail puts you at a greater risk for identity theft; storing information electronically is much safer.
  • Time – The average consumer saves 2.5 minutes per bill when paying electronically instead of by check.
  • Money – Remember, postage and check stock are NOT free.

However, the amount of paper you choose to lose can improve each of those things. An easy and effective way to reduce paper is to convert your bills and payments from postal to electronic delivery.

Luckily for you, most things can be done online with Western Mutual by visiting our website http://www.westernmutual.com

Here, you’ll be able to pay your bill and request changes to your policy all while avoiding a wait time and making a positive impact for a sustainable future.

It’s That Time of Year Again

32 teams, 18 weeks, one big game…it all starts tomorrow night.

The NFL is set for the projected season with brand new stadiums ready to announce kick-off. Even in the midst of a pandemic, the lead up to this season feels a bit different — and it could end up being one of the most memorable years yet.

The season opener will be take place Thursday September 9th as the reigning champs -Tampa Bay Buccaneers – take on the Dallas Cowboys.

Known as a true American sport, with over 114 million viewers each year, we have our fingers crossed that we can enjoy yet another season of football.

Who will you be watching it with?