I haven’t written much here lately because I am writing furiously to get the first draft of my book to the editor before I leave for vacation Friday.
The book is really all I’ve thought about since I made the decision to write it. It’s become an obsession (albeit a healthy one). To take on such a project really takes commitment and overwhelming passion for the cause. It’s all I’ve thought about. When I”m not writing, I think about writing. It’s quite exhausting really. But a good kind of exhaustion. God bless my husband for being so understanding- he gladly gives me a set time to write and he occupies the kiddos. Because although I really attempt to write before the kids get up or after they go to bed, the reality is that sometimes it just doesn’t work out that way.
Putting myself under the microscope
A project like this certainly kicks the self-analysis machine into high gear. And believe me, I’ve been ripping myself apart. When I get frustrated or the words don’t come, I continually ask myself, “Why am I doing this?” After much internal questioning, here’s my answer:
To bring honesty and transparency to an industry that so desperately needs it. And if I’m going to be bold, I may as well go whole hog and say I also hope to help remove the negative perception of insurance. Lofty goals I know. But if I’m going to make the commitment, there’s no halfway or half ass.
You see, I truly love my work. I’ve always said, “If you truly love what you do, you never work a day in your life.” I’m fortunate that most days I feel this way.
I love helping people figure out solutions to their problems. I love explaining those solutions and seeing a light bulb go off. I love talking with people and learning from them. I even love helping with claims- we help people get through some of the darkest days of their lives and provide the means to restore them. It is totally gratifying and makes my heart sing.
There a lot of great insurance folks and companies who subscribe to the same philosophy.
But there are many who don’t.
And it’s these people who have convinced the general public that anyone in insurance is akin to a baby snatcher, serial killer, or bank robber. Let’s be honest, if you work in insurance and someone asks you what you do for a living, do you sometimes scramble to come up with an alternative job title? I think we all have at one time or another, just because public perception is SOOOOO bad. I’ll be perfectly honest, it’s very hard to fight those stereotypes. Thank God I can say “I’m the Insurance Goddess”, because that’s way more intriguing than saying insurance agent. You say insurance agent and people practically run the other way just to get away from you.
So, what’s this book you keep talking about?
I’ve been in the insurance business since 1996. And I’ve discovered an APPALLING lack of information for first time homebuyers concerning the process for insuring that home. There’s guides for the real estate process. Guides for the mortgage loan process. But virtually nothing for the insurance seeking and buying process. And there’s a lot of clueless folks out there. I know because I’ve spoken to many over my career. And when I speak with these folks, they ask the same questions.
So I figured it was time to develop a resource that answered these common questions and gave people the information they’re so desperately seeking. The working title so far- “Insuring your First Home- Your Must-Have Guide to Making the Process as Painless as Possible.” I’m giving the reader tools to look at homes the way I (and many other insurance folks) look at homes- from an insurance perspective. The knowledge they’ll gain will help make the home search extremely productive (who wouldn’t want to save some time looking at houses?), take the pain out of the process (and who DOESN’T want that?) and instill confidence they’re making a wise investment.
And that helps the consumer, the insurance agent, and the insurance company issuing the policy. Win for all.
Eliminating secrets is the first step to honesty
So, my book is brutally honest. I’m going behind the “veil of secrecy” if you will, and laying it all out there. I’ll tell you things that insurance companies don’t want you to know. You may not like some of the things I say. But it’s all true. And that honesty shows through. Which leads me to my next point.
Transparency = Trust
Buying your first home is an amazing experience. It’s also a “Holy Hell, what did I get myself into?” series of moments. I know- I’ve done it twice.
But it’s also a huge leap of faith and pretty damn significant chunk of cash. And it takes a lot of people working together to make the magic happen. Yet, I still find that the most important people to the transaction- the general public, mortgage lenders and realtors- don’t have a very firm handle on the often time-consuming and painstaking process of getting a home insured. It’s not instantaneous and does require a decent amount of background work. I wish I could wave my “Goddess wand” and make it happen just like that. But, it doesn’t work that way.
And in order for all parties to work well together, and get our mutual customer to home ownership, I think it’s critical to “show my hand.” I’m laying all my cards on the table and giving access to information that is not often seen in such great detail by the general public.
What You’ll Find:
It’s stuff that insurance companies will be wringing their hands about because “that’s our little secret.”
It’s in-the-trenches, 16 years worth of experience.
And what I’m most proud of- you’ll feel like we’re sitting at the coffee shop having a conversation.
Yep, the “voice” that so many have enjoyed is still there. Perhaps a bit more polished for publication, but the same nonetheless 🙂
I’m terribly excited about this undertaking and believe it will be extremely valuable to so many people. Realtors, Lenders, First-time homebuyers, but the potential is wide open. In fact, even if you’ve bought and sold 20 houses, I promise you’ll still learn at least one new idea.