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NuLine Insurance Services is dedicated to finding you the right insurance to insure your growth. We provide quality auto, home, business, and ag insurance.

The Christmas Package Bandit

The Christmas Package Bandit
By Amy Haldorson
I have an "understanding" with my UPS man. He brings my packages to my office at work so certain people who may or may not like it when I online shop will not know. I'm not trying to be dishonest, but sometimes its just better all around if the husband is not aware every single package. After all, its not my fault companies ship every single item separately. Avoiding confrontation seems like a win win. This time of the year the packages we receive seem to quadruple. More and more people are online shopping. And why not? Its convenient and you can avoid all the holiday crowds. Last December I ordered a gift. Never mind that the gift was for myself. My UPS man was on vacation, so I would need to be crafty as to how to get to the package before anyone was the wiser. I checked the website all day and saw when it was delivered. I raced home to hide the evidence. No package. I checked the website again, and it definitely said delivered. This was very strange. I immediately reordered the package And raced home. No package. Ok, now I knew this wasn't an accident. Someone was stealing my packages. I reordered the package and waited the two days for it. I raced home minutes after it was delivered. Surely no one could steal it in that short amount of time. No package. Now I was angry. I remembered seeing something on the news about package theft and the holidays.
As home delivery increases, so does package theft. This is creating a lucrative new industry among thieves: porch piracy. Rural areas have a higher rate of packages stolen and North Dakota is the highest ranking state for package theft. A lot of times, these thieves follow delivery trucks and watch for prime targets. It is recommended that if you live in a rural area to have your package delivered to your work address or a friend in town. You can also ask the shipper to require a signature confirmation upon delivery. As criminals are getting more crafty when pulling off these heists, a lot of people are resorting to doorbell cameras. It may sound expensive and too high tech, but it doesn't have to be. A doorbell camera works by allowing you to view live video of whoever is outside your door, without having to open the door, peak out the window, or be home. Doorbell cameras allow you to discreetly view who is at the door without making your presence known. You can view a live video feed from a phone, tablet, or other device. It is more subtle than a security camera while still providing the functionality of a doorbell. Another benefit is having piece of mind that your kids don’t have the answer the door or even to check up on your kids if they are home alone.
So, now that I had had numerous packages mysteriously disappear, it was time to get one of these cameras. I ordered a doorbell camera and it came within a couple days. The installation was easier than expected. I was able to see my front steps from my phone. Sweet! Of course I had to freak out my kids right away and call them commenting on something they had done. I watched them look around all scared and got a good laugh. Now to catch the package thief! And I definitely did……...

Employee Spotlight

Employee Spotlight
Collin Mertz is the newest member to the NuLine team. He came to us in August as a business coop student. Collin is a senior at Harvey High School, where he is involved in many activities including FBLA, wrestling and football. He grew up on a farm near Harvey. Collin is the son of James and Jenn Mertz and he is one of four boys in his family. In his spare time, he can be found helping on the family farm. With farming as his passion, Collin plans to attend BSC in Bismarck next fall with a major in farm and ranch management. When he's not helping his family, he spends his free time lifting weights, hanging with friends or riding dirt bike. With Collins farming experience, he has been a big asset to our company, helping with our crop insurance. He has been helpful in other areas as well, such as data input, doing supply runs, filing and any other office duties we may need completed. Collin’s presence in our office has been very positive and we look forward to helping him grow his knowledge and experience with farming. Collin is doing a great job so far and we are appreciative of all the hard work. We are excited for the fun experience having him as our coop student this year!

Burn Burn Burn

Burn Burn Burn
Burning ditches and burning fields is an agricultural practice that effectively and inexpensively removes accumulated debris that can block ditches and water flow. It should only be attempted in certain places and under certain weather conditions. Damp seasons and when there is snow on the ground are ideal but only if the winds are blowing 5mph or less. There are certain precautions one should take to ensure your safety and to ensure the fire does not get out of control. From an insurance standpoint, should you be negligent in taking precautions and the fire damages another’s property, you could be liable. Here are a list of steps to take in order to practice safe burning:
1. Secure prior approval. Depending on the state and how much you are burning, you may need to notify the appropriate authorities and fire department of the burn.
2. Have a plan. Know the area where you are planning to burn as well as the surrounding area. Take note of property lines, fences, gates, power lines, roads, and nearby buildings. Also be aware of anything that could intensify the fire such as dead trees or matted grass.
3. Create firebreaks to contain the fire. You can do this by mowing, plowing disking, creating a wet line or backfiring. Notify surrounding land owners of your intent to burn.
4. Watch the weather. The factors to determine a safe burn include; wind speed and direction, temperature, humidity.
5. Use proper equipment. You will need equipment to ignite the fire and smother it. Have a sufficient supply of water on hand to refill pumps and sprayers.

Chicken Bacon Ranch Pasta

Chicken Bacon Ranch Pasta
“As cooler weather approaches, I'm always looking for warm hearty comfort food, and this is it!"
Ingredients:
1 pound of penne pasta
6 strips of bacon diced
2 tbsp. all purpose flour
1 packet of ranch seasoning mix
2 cups milk
1 tbsp. butter
Salt and pepper
2 boneless skinless chicken breasts-cut into pieces
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
Directions: Start by cooking your pasta, draining it, and setting it aside. While you are making your noodles, cook your bacon in a skillet. Drain the grease but keep 1 tbsp. of bacon drippings in the pan. Add a tbsp. of butter to the bacon drippings and toss in your chicken breast pieces. Cook until no longer pink. Pour the ranch dressing mix and flour over chicken then add 2 cups of milk. Stir until it is bubbly and thick. Add the cheese and half of your diced bacon. Stir until melted. Combine the sauce and noodles together and add salt and pepper. Top off with the extra bacon pieces and ENJOY!

Adventures in an Uber!

Adventures in an Uber!
By Amy Haldorson
This day in age, ride sourcing has become the norm. Its rare to find a larger city that does not have Uber or Lyft. These ways of travel are convenient, most times inexpensive and also an excellent source of income.
Having used this form of transportation many times, I thought I was familiar with everything when it came to the process. Recently, I found myself in an uncomfortable Uber situation to say the least. I was in a large city a few weeks ago needing a ride. Everything went smoothly like always, until the driver pulled up to my destination. I quickly flung open my door and at that exact time another car came flying by crashing into my open door. I heard the sound of crunching and was almost too scared to look. The door hadn't completely come off, so I very carefully reached out and shut the door as best I could. I looked up at the Uber driver who was staring wide eyed at me. I'm pretty sure I had the same look on my face. I said, thank you for the ride sir, handed him a ten and got out of the car as fast as I could. I looked around for the other vehicle which was long gone, not stopping to survey the damage. I was at a loss when it came to knowing what to do in this situation. I felt bad for him, as I looked back seeing him looking at his vehicle and cringing. Somehow I don’t think the 5 star rating I gave him was going to be of any comfort.
My mind immediately went to insurance. Who was liable for the damage? Uber requires all of their drivers to have car insurance and provide supplemental insurance coverage, but only while the app is on. When the Uber app is off, a driver is covered by their own personal car insurance. In this situation, the Uber’s app will still on and so Uber’s insurance still covered the incident.
If you choose to become an Uber or Lyft driver yourself, your personal auto insurance will probably not be enough coverage while you are driving for the company. If you are considering doing this for a profession, it is always a good idea to first check with your insurance agent to make sure you have all the right coverages in place.

HOME MAINTENANCE MUST DO’S!


HOME MAINTENANCE MUST DO’S!

When you own a home its important to understand the main purpose of homeowner’s insurance is to protect from major risks like fires, hail, explosions, theft and wind. What is doesn't cover is poor maintenance which could lead to costly repairs and future claims.
We have put together some useful tips to avoid some future problems:
1. Caulk where needed to keep moisture out.
2. Clean the clothes dryer lint trap and exhaust duct.
3. Inspect your roof for early signs of wear or damage and repair right away.
4. Test and clean sump pump pit on a regular basis.
5. Inspect and clean chimneys annually.
6. Clean and maintain gutters and downspouts.
7. Regularly inspect pipes and plumbing.
8. Inspect your deck. There has been a recent increase in the number of decks that have collapsed or fallen apart.

Driving Adventures With My Teenager

Driving Adventures With My Teenager
By Amy Haldorson
The day is finally here. I always knew it would come, but no one really prepared me for the most frightening, hair-raising, terrifying event in my life. That’s right people, you guessed it….my teen is now a driver. I had always imagined my little girl and I going for her first driving lesson. We would be laughing together, I’d help her with her first parallel park, she’d maybe even look over at me at some point and say, you know mom, I love us spending time together. My fantasy was soon crushed when we did in fact get my daughter behind the wheel for the first time. I watched as she adjusted her seat, mirrors, fixed her hair, and turned off my 90s hip hop, the usual. I tried giving her a little instruction as she backed up and was met with “omg mom, can you be more annoying". She’s right, this is her time to shift into adulthood. I sat back and smiled, she's got this, why am I worrying? Crunch! Yep, that just happened. She hit her father’s vehicle just backing out of the driveway. I very calmly told her to turn off the car and I walked back to my house. This concludes the driving lesson for today. We will try again tomorrow. Not all new driver situations are this scary. Some kids actually make it out of the driveway. Once your student has finally gotten their license, its time to think about insurance. Many people ask us, do I have to even let my insurance know if my teen only drives my vehicle, or will my insurance go up if my teen is listed on my policy. To answer these questions, if your child is licensed, yes, they need to be rated as a driver on your insurance plan and it will go up! Individuals between the ages of 16 and 24 are considered the most risky drivers to insure. Fun fact: the most expensive state to add a teen driver is Rhode Island. They have an average premium increase of 137%. North Dakota ranks 4th least expensive with an average increase of 61%! There are some ways, however, to offset the cost. Insurance companies offer a good student discount (B average or 3.0 GPA), which a lot of people don’t realize. We recently had a customer who added her teenage son. When, she did, the premium increased by $450/year. Thankfully when speaking to her, we were able to get her son’s grades into the company and they received a good student discount, which gave them a discount of $150/year, which every little bit helps! Also, something to consider when getting your child a their first vehicle, is the type of vehicle will affect the insurance. Different cars rate differently with insurance. A newer car will obviously make for a higher premium because of the vehicle symbol being higher and whether or not full coverage or liability only is needed. My parents did the smart thing with me even though at the time, I was sure my life was over. My first vehicle was an old ‘85 Buick. An older, less fancy car rates much lower, so I can appreciate them trying to save money. So, when they say, Oh Mom, c’mon that car is not good enough, just give us a call and we will run the numbers for you to show them the cost differences. And, remember—your kids are always watching what you do—drive with that in mind!

- RECIPE OF THE MONTH -

Homemade Pico de Gallo
By Michelle Weinmann
“Fresh garden produce makes this the perfect appetizer, or bake over chicken breasts and some cheese for a quick meal!"
Ingredients:
2 cups diced sweet tomatoes like grape or roma
1/2 cup diced yellow onion
1 jalapeno pepper
1/2 cup chopped cilantro
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 lime, juiced
Dice tomatoes with the salt and place them in a mesh strainer over a bowl for 10 min. Discard the juice.
In a medium bowl, combine the tomatoes, onion, cilantro, pepper and lime juice together and mix. Let chill for 10-20 min to allow flavors to meld. Serve with chips or as a topping on your favorite Mexican dish.
Enjoy!

Business Spotlight of the Month!

Business Spotlight of the Month!
THE BAIT BOX

This month we want to spotlight a new business located in Harvey, Rugby and Anamoose, ND. The Bait Box is owned and operated by Jerry and Lara Schuh of Harvey. Being an avid fishing family, the Schuh’s always had dreams of selling bait and tackle in some capacity. When this business venture came along, they jumped at the chance. They recognized the local area always had a great need for bait. The Schuh’s along with their three boys, fish year round, so they have a good idea of what people want and need when it comes to this pastime. The Bait Box is very easy to access and has multiple selections of bait such as leeches, minnows, wax worms and more. Also available is tackle and snacks. They are going to be adding green glow worms soon as well. Schuh’s encourage people to call and ask if there's something they wish to buy that’s not currently available. Their information is located on the side of the machine. Shipments of bait usually come in bulk a few times a week and they get from multiple locations including Canada. Lara then travels to each bait box and refills a few times a week. The Bait Box is refrigerated and heated when need be to be up and running all year round. As of now, they are happy with serving three locations, but are open to expanding in the future.