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Review Your Life Insurance Before Trimming Hedges

As a single working mom of two children, my time is precious. Every hour is accounted for, and in the summer, I have to make time for yard work too (not my favorite). But I figured it was always cheaper to make time than to hire someone. That is, until I experienced a single moment of almost-electrocution while I was trimming hedges. In that moment, I not only realized I needed to hire someone, but that I should check the limits of my life insurance.

This was two years ago, when my kids were still too young to cut grass or use electrical tools. I decided to tackle the bushes the size of Mt. Everest around the perimeter of the house. I know I’m a strong, capable, smart woman. So I marched off to my local home improvement store and purchased an electric hedge trimmer. I’d never used one in my life. How hard could it be? Apparently, harder than I thought.

I got home, plugged it into a long orange extension cord and had at it. Everything was going great. I finished up the front yard and moved to the back arborvitae. Then—and I’m not even sure how it happened—I cut the extension cord. Yes, I cut it. I mean I cut it in half. Sparks flew and the hedge trimmer went dead. I thought for sure my house was about to go up in flames.Thankfully, the cord landed safely at my feet and everything was okay, minus my nerves.

After I settled down, I went back to said home improvement store and purchased a new extension cord. The cashier recognized me and asked, “You cut the extension cord, didn’t you?” I was somewhat embarrassed, but I was more impressed that she figured it out. (Really, how could she know such a thing? Do I look that much like a novice with a power tool?) She kindly explained people do it all the time. (Awesome, I’m really not that incompetent!)

I got home—still a little frazzled—but was determined to finish the job. I moved slower and was more mindful of that orange cord. Ten minutes later, boom. I cut it again. And I was just as shaken as the first time it happened, maybe even more so. (Seriously…two cords in one day? This wasn’t an example to set for my kids.)

It was then I realized if something happened to me, I needed to be 100 percent sure my kids would be taken care of. I knew I had an employer-paid life policy, as well as a separate policy, but would that be enough?

I researched the issue online (it’s what we all do when we’re obsessing—turn to the Internet), and I learned from LIMRA that 35 million households don’t have any life insurance at all. That means the death of an income earner could be financially catastrophic.

In my case, I figured I didn’t have enough because my policy was set up more than 10 years before. After sitting down with my Erie Insurance agent soon after, I realized I didn’t have as much coverage as I should, so we talked about what products made sense for my situation.

If you’re in the same boat (or a similar one), ERIE’s Fast and Easy Life Insurance Calculator can help you get a gauge quickly whether your loved ones will have enough should something tragic happen. Plus, your local ERIE Insurance agent can help you review the variety of products Erie Family Life offers that ensure you and your loved ones’ financial future is protected.

Life is a funny thing. You just never know what’s going to happen, so give yourself peace of mind knowing you have adequate life insurance. I ended up adding more life coverage—oh, and I hired a landscaper.

ERIEĀ® insurance products and services are provided by one or more of the following insurers: Erie Insurance Exchange, Erie Insurance Company, Erie Insurance Property & Casualty Company, Flagship City Insurance Company and Erie Family Life Insurance Company (home offices: Erie, Pennsylvania) or Erie Insurance Company of New York (home office: Rochester, New York).  The companies within the Erie Insurance Group are not licensed to operate in all states. Refer to the company licensure and states of operation information.

The insurance products and rates, if applicable, described in this blog are in effect as of July 2022 and may be changed at any time. 

Insurance products are subject to terms, conditions and exclusions not described in this blog. The policy contains the specific details of the coverages, terms, conditions and exclusions. 

The insurance products and services described in this blog are not offered in all states.  ERIE life insurance and annuity products are not available in New York.  ERIE Medicare supplement products are not available in the District of Columbia or New York.  ERIE long term care products are not available in the District of Columbia and New York. 

Eligibility will be determined at the time of application based upon applicable underwriting guidelines and rules in effect at that time.

Your ERIE agent can offer you practical guidance and answer questions you may have before you buy.