Here are 5 things you should know.
1. Not to stop the flow of traffic to let someone pull out.
If traffic is moving you should not come to a complete stop to let someone out of a parking lot. Don’t block the box.
It’s an accident waiting to happen. Never mind if they’re turning left the other side of oncoming traffic may not stop and could result in a multi-car crash. Just keep moving, when the road is clear they can pull out. You will cause a roadblock, and inevitably cause traffic, which just backs everything up. Please be patient and keep traffic moving.
2. Lilies are extremely poisonous to cats and every part of the plant, including the pollen can be fatal.
3. This summer is predicted to be even more favorable for wildfires than last year. Please have a plan ready.
Last year, the United States saw its top 4 worst fires in history during July-September due to incredibly dry conditions.
Please, take a moment to think about what you will do and prep for an escape if needed, and be prepared!
Clear leaves and other debris from gutters, eaves, porches, and decks. This prevents embers from igniting your home. Remove dead vegetation and other items from under your deck or porch, and within 10 feet of the house.
Screen or box-in areas below patios and decks with wire mesh to prevent debris and combustible materials from accumulating. Remove flammable materials (firewood stacks, propane tanks) within 30 feet of your home’s foundation and outbuildings, including garages and sheds.
If it can catch fire, don’t let it touch your house, deck, or porch.
Wildfire can spread to treetops.
Prune trees so the lowest branches are 6 to 10 feet from the ground. Keep your lawn hydrated and maintained. If it is brown, cut it down to reduce fire intensity. Dry grass and shrubs are fuel for wildfire.
Don’t let debris and lawn cuttings linger. Dispose of these items quickly to reduce fuel for the fire. Inspect shingles or roof tiles.
Replace or repair those that are loose or missing to prevent ember penetration.
Cover exterior attic vents with metal wire mesh no larger than 1/8 inch to prevent sparks from entering the home.
Enclose under-eave and soffit vents or screens with metal mesh to prevent ember entry.
Creating an emergency plan
Assemble an emergency supply kit and place it in a safe spot. Remember to include important documents, medications, and personal identification.
Develop an emergency evacuation plan and practice it with everyone in your home.
Plan two ways out of your neighborhood and designate a meeting place.
In your community:
Contact your local planning/zoning office to find out if your home is in a high wildfire risk area, and if there are specific local or county ordinances you should be following.
If you are part of a homeowner association, work with them to identify regulations that incorporate proven preparedness landscaping, home design, and building material use.
Talk to your local fire department about how to prepare, when to evacuate, and the response you and your neighbors can expect in the event of a wildfire.
Learn about wildfire risk reduction efforts, including how land management agencies use prescribed fire to manage local landscapes.
Learn how you can make a positive difference in your community.
4. Gas stations in California are not allowed to charge for air and water.
The air and water machines at gas stations are coin-operated. There is seemingly a charge for this service. If you read the fine print, they sometimes call it a donation. If you ask the attendant to turn it on, they will either give you a token, or they can turn it on for you. Free!
5. Putting money into upgrading your home does not directly translate to increased value.
People often think that if they bought their house for $150K and put $100K into upgrades, their home will appraise for $250K. Your home’s value is appraised based on the “Sales comparison approach”, which takes recent home sales in your area of homes with similar construction to yours (# bedrooms, bathrooms, sq. Ft….etc) and bases the value on this. Don’t dump your savings and think you can get it back with a cash-out refinance.