Margarita (Margie) Dilone is a lifelong resident of Washington DC and has been working in the insurance field since 1981. Her parents entrepreneurial spirit gave her a foundation for business ownership and working within your community. Crystal Insurance is devoted to servicing clients through education. They are constantly looking for the best coverage at rates that you can afford. Margie is bilingual and was the first to open an Insurance Agency in DC that offered bilingual customer service.
We sat down with Margie to learn more about her background and her commitment to her clients. As a member of the community and a business owner herself, she understands your needs, as she herself faces the same issues.
What does your business do? We assist individuals and businesses in providing answers for their what if? Scenarios:
- What if my business had a fire, who would I call?, how do I replace the loss in revenue?, what happens next?
- As a homeowner – if I suffer a disability, how do I pay my mortgage? What if a tree falls on my house – how is that covered?
- If I am involved in a multi-vehicle accident, will my auto policy provide enough coverage?
- If I am biking and strike a pedestrian, will any of my policies respond?
Who is your customer? Individuals, families and business owners that would like to understand what they need to purchase to protect their assets while getting the best value for their dollar.
How long have you been in this business? The Agency started in 1984 but I started in the insurance field in 1981. The agency has evolved and I am fortunate that both of my children, Andres (Andy) and Irma Mendoza work along side of me. Andy is a Commercial Account Executive Irma is an Account Executive. Both have grown up in the industry and have an incredible grasp of the industry, the product lines, and what works best for clients.
What did you do before that? Five years in the real estate field – handling complaints against realtors, editing a newsletter & serving as a liaison at the local Board of Realtors.
Why did you start your business? Primarily to serve clients who did not have access to insurance markets in the city in the same way that other clients had access to agents in the suburbs, i.e. at the time I started my Agency, I was the first Bilingual – English, Spanish Property & Casualty Agent in the entire Washington, DC Metro Area. I was also the first to become an Agency owner.
What do you enjoy most about it? Handling an array of client needs and the diverse types of clients that I have from that brand new driver to that first time home buyer to that individual who decided he is going to roll the dice and start his own business and call his own shots. There is not a day that goes by that I can say that I am bored.
What makes your business different from others that do similar things? I believe that it is because of our location, because of our community involvement and the diversity we represent. I previously co-owned a contracting business and held a contractor’s license for over 10 years. I also grew up in my parents business in Mt. Pleasant/Adams Morgan. My parents owned Casa Dilone (a wholesale and retail grocery business that specialized in Latin American & imported foods) which was one of the first Latin American businesses in the DC Metropolitan Area opened in 1961. They have been featured in several Smithsonian publications and my mother is prominently featured on one of the signs on the Mt. Pleasant Heritage Trail Markers as a pioneer in the community. This has given me a background in small business so I know what makes a businessperson stay up at night and also what gives you that very special feeling of accomplishment. It is also a family business, we work together as more than just a team to deliver successful results to our clients.
What special things do you do for your customers?
- I teach first time home buyer seminars to people at two different community organizations. I provide them with an outline of what homeowners and condominium insurance covers and will also occasionally give them general information on safety concerns both from the standpoint of avoiding crime and also from the standpoint of avoiding fires and other types of property claims.
- I will also assist my DC homeowners clients with checking to make sure that they are receiving the Homestead Tax Deduction or Senior Citizen Tax Relief – I have found many clients that are overpaying on their property taxes because they didn’t know about these programs.
- I have also taught classes for aspiring entrepreneurs giving them advice on marketing, selecting professionals to assist you in growing your business and protecting their assets.
Please contact Crystal Insurance to learn how they can help you find the best coverage at the best rates.