Starting life over -- from the ground up

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Laurie Kendall owned one of 66 homes that were destroyed by a fire in Auburn, California in August of 2009. Less than 9 months later, thanks to the quick response and assistance of her homeowner's insurance provider, and with no significant out-of-pocket expenses, she became the first owner to rebuild and move in to her new home on the same property in her old neighborhood.

I was fully covered for my new house and belongings with no significant additional out-of-pocket expenses.

Sometimes good things do happen to good people. Laurie Kendall lived through a horrendous experience -- the loss of her house and everything in it -- to a disastrous fire. But thanks to her insurance company -- Capital Insurance Group – she was able to rest easy, rebuild and move back in to her new home with amazing speed.

     On the afternoon of Sunday, August 31, 2009, Laurie looked out the back window of her home just in time to see a huge wall of smoke engulfing the property behind hers. With the fire at her fence line, she had only moments to escape and just enough time to rescue her two dogs, her laptop…and nothing else.

     From the safety of her son’s house, she recalled watching local news coverage of the fire.

    “The second time they showed my home, the whole thing was engulfed in flames. The third time they came back and it was like, ‘Oh! There’s the driveway!’ There was nothing left!”

     By the time the fire was finally contained, the wildfire had charred 375 acres and destroyed 66 homes. Everything that Laurie Kendall had left behind was gone.

     Nine months after the fire, over half of the homeowners in her subdivision had not yet started re-building. But on April 15th, 2010, just 257 days after her home burned to the ground, Laurie Kendall moved into her completely new re-built home on her same property. On June 5th, 2010 she had a house warming party with friends and family. The new 3-bed, 2-bath home has a big backyard and a giant deck, perfect for family gatherings and visits from her grandchildren.

            “My house was among the first in the sub-division to begin re-construction. I was fully covered for my new house and belongings with no significant additional out-of-pocket expenses. CIG’s coverage and timely service really were a Godsend for me,” said Laurie.

Fire Victim Rebuilds More Than a Home

        Laurie’s neighbors quickly learned that the payout from most insurance companies maxes out at the value of the dwelling coverage plus a percentage - usually not nearly enough to rebuild. But thanks to Capital Insurance Group’s unique “Think Twice” coverage (essentially up to twice the dwelling building costs, if that’s what it takes) Laurie was able to rebuild her peace of mind as well as her home.

        The response and assistance from Laurie’s insurance company was swift, consistent and very personal: Capital Insurance Group, CIG, Claims Adjuster Mark Hunter was at the scene the very first morning after the fire to assess the damages and meet with Laurie in person.

            “Mark handed me a check for $50,000 right away, so I could immediately begin purchasing necessities, pay my normal bills and start to get my life back in order again,” Laurie explained. “Then, in the months ahead, he always made me feel as though I was being taken care of, and he delivered on his promises. I started to feel like I could ‘trust’ again,” she continued.

Out of the ashes comes hope.

            “It’s hard losing everything and starting over. But now I have a whole new house. It’s all beautiful. It's so nice to get back to your own place, your own things, and the way it always was,” said Laurie. She added, “Now that my neighbors and I have lived through it and survived it, we’re all moving ahead. Thanks to my family, friends and CIG, it’s a happy end to a nightmare. Life is good again.”

About Capital Insurance Group

        CIG is the leading property and casualty insurer serving the Western United States. CIG insures personal auto, home, condo and apartment building owners, vacation property, renters and many kinds of commercial and agricultural property. Established in 1899, CIG has earned an “A” (Excellent) rating by A.M. Best, the independent financial monitor of the insurance industry. It has recently been awarded the Ward’s 50 Seal for its superior performance as one of the safest and most efficient property/casualty insurers in the United States. CIG manages personal, business and agriculture risks underwritten by its four affiliates: California Capital Insurance Company, Eagle West Insurance Company, Nevada Capital Insurance Company and Monterey Insurance Company. Types of policies may vary from state to state. CIG Delivers More. Continuously.

        For more information about CIG’s products and services, please visit their website at


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Sandie Borthwick
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