Happy Holidays, See Our New Rentals, Holiday Disaster Avoidance, Winter Home Maintenance, and 6 Horror Stories of Bad Neighbors. :: Doctor Relocation, LLC. | MyNewsletterBuilder













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Happy Holidays From Dr. Relocation!

We know what you really want for Christmas!

5 Holiday Hosting Disasters and How to Avoid Them:

Take a look at the most common things that can go wrong when you have guests and learn how to prevent them.

Hosting nightmares can end your holiday party before it even begins. Thankfully, some of the most damaging mishaps easily can be avoided. We collected five of the most prevalent issues and give you preventative tips to keep your holiday party on track.

 

Problem: The oven doesn’t heat

For any holiday occasion, the oven is the most important appliance in your house. If it fails to work, the centerpiece of your meal could go from roasted beef, ham, duck, or Tofurky to Peking Duck from the local Chinese takeout joint.

 

How to avoid:

 

  • There are any number of reasons a stove can break, but one common cause of disaster is easy to prevent. Don’t self-clean your oven until AFTER the holidays. You risk blowing a fuse or a thermostat, and tracking down an oven technician around the holidays can be tough.

Problem: The kitchen sink clogs

The day after Thanksgiving is the busiest of the year for plumbers. The prime cause of this clog-a-thon is the mistreatment of drains when cooking holiday feasts. We hope your Thanksgiving went well, and that you avoid clog-a-thons for the rest of the holidays.

 

How to avoid:

 

  • Fats and cooking oils can solidify in your pipes, so never dispose of them in your kitchen sink.
  • If you have a garbage disposal, make sure it’s running before anything goes in it, and never feed it any stringy, fibrous, or starchy foods like poultry skins or potato peels.
  • To fix, don’t rely on chemical drain-clearing products that can harm your pipes. Use a snake instead, available for $15 at your local hardware store. Best to keep one on hand.

Problem: The heat goes out

As the party’s host, you’re supposed to hang guests’ coats—not apologize to them for having to keep them on. A lack of heat can stop a holiday party dead in its tracks.

 

How to avoid:

 

  • The key to avoiding freezing your party to a standstill is regular maintenance of your HVAC. Every 90 days, a new one-inch pleated furnace filter should be installed. If you haven’t done it in a while, now’s a good time to replace it.
  • Also inspect insulation on refrigerant lines that are leading into your house. Replace them if they’re missing or damaged.  

Problem: The toilet stops up

Toilets have a way of clogging up at the worst times, such as during parties and when you have overnight guests. This is especially true if you have a low-flow toilet from the early 1990s.

 

How to avoid:

 

  • Don’t flush anything other than sewage and toilet paper down the toilet. And there’s nothing wrong with putting up a polite note to remind your guests to do the same.

Problem: The fridge doesn’t cool

Without a properly functioning refrigerator, your meat could get contaminated, your dairy-based treats could go sour, and you may not be able to save your yummy leftovers. To avoid discovering a warm fridge after it’s too late, take these simple precautions.

 

How to avoid:

  • Get a thermometer for your refrigerator to make sure each shelf stays below 40 degrees and you can be aware of any temperature changes.
  • Also make sure the condenser coils located on the back of the unit or beneath it are free to breathe. Coils blocked from circulating air by cereal boxes atop the fridge, or dirtied by dust or pet hair can prevent a fridge from keeping cool.

Forward our newsletter and share these cartoons & articles with your friends and family!

Tricks, Not Treats: 6 Horror Stories of Bad Neighbor Behavior

HouseLogic lists some of the craziest, creepiest, and grossest neighbor behavior, and provides some valuable advice for managing neighbor-on-neighbor disputes.

 

 

1. The chicken coup 

 

It started Sept. 21, when a chicken-owner from Tyler, Texas, saw his neighbor’s dog carrying off one of his chickens—and it ended with gun shots, reported the local NBC affiliate KETK. According to investigators, the first bullet came from the chicken owner’s gun when he attempted to rescue his hen. But the dog’s owner returned fire, sparking a brief but scary shootout that brought the cops onto the scene. Thankfully, no one was hurt—though there’s no report on the fate of the stolen chicken.

 

Neighborly Tip: While the chicken owner was technically operating within his rights, we wouldn’t advise using a gun to solve the problem. If you feel you, your pets, or your children are in danger from a loose neighborhood dog, try using dog pepper spray or ultrasonic dog repellent–a much more humane and much less dangerous defense.

 

 

 

2. The neighbor who ‘borrowed’ the car

 

Last November, a Jacksonville, Fla., woman found her neighbor dead in his home—and then found a way to profit from the situation, local news reported

 

. The 33-year-old woman didn’t report the death to the authorities. Instead she chose to “borrow” a few things from her deceased neighbor: his checkbook, his credit cards, and his car. But the authorities caught up with her before long, and she was arrested and charged with fraud and burglary.

 

Neighborly Tip: Most identity thieves don’t wait for such an “opportunity.” These steps, provided by the Federal Trade Commission, can help you protect yourself against identity theft.

 

 

3. The dog-napper

 

Neighbors in an Ohio suburb had been feuding for two years when one of them kidnapped the other’s dog—and took it to a local shelter, says a local report

 

. The culprit told kennel staff he had found the dog running around some railroad tracks. When the dog’s owners asked, the neighbor denied any involvement. But after finding their pup in a shelter, they contacted the police with their suspicions.

 

It wasn’t long before the vengeful dog-napping plan was uncovered. The dog-napper was arrested, sentenced to a month in jail, and ordered not to have contact with his neighbors.

 

Neighborly Tip: His frustration isn’t entirely unreasonable–a loose dog could be dangerous, or end up hurt if it runs in the path of a car. But a call to Animal Control would have been a better solution. Ohio (like most states) has a leash law, which states that a dog must be leashed and controlled by its owner or keeper at all times, except during recreational hunting.

 

 

4. The ‘unauthorized’ neighbor

 

For the former Alaskan Governor, Republican Sarah Palin, being in the spotlight is nothing new. But when writer Joe McGinniss, who happened to be researching his unauthorized biography about her, moved into her neighbor’s house in May–it was a little too close for comfort.

 

Palin posted an acerbic message on Facebook condemning the move, and erected an 8-foot fence

 

around her property to thwart any “peeping.” In early September, McGinniss moved back home to finish the book, but maintains that Palin herself was the inappropriate party, saying her reaction to his presence was out of line, bordering on harassment.

 

Neighborly Tip: Whether you’re in Palin’s shoes or McGinniss’, neighborhood harassment laws do exist. They vary from state to state, and it’s important to make sure you know what constitutes harassment in yours.

 

 

5. Reign of terror

 

It sounds like the plot of a horror movie—but it’s true. In 2006, the residents of Bottomley, West Yorkshire, England, were the victims of a 16-month rampage by an angry neighbor, the BBC reported. The perpetrator played loud

 

choral music about rape and pillage, damaged vehicles, set booby traps, and littered the road with dead animals, dog feces and nails.

 

Eventually the judge slapped the accused with an anti-social behavior order (basically a restraining order here in the States). The woman filed for an appeal in 2008, but was denied and fined

 

£200,000 for breaching the order on two occasions.

 

Neighborly Tip: It’s unclear exactly what initially set her off, but before you go off the deep end and do something you’ll regret, take more reasonable, legal steps. You don’t have to take abuse, either. Get your HOA or the city involved if you feel you’re being threatened.

 

 

6. The fence offense

Even celebrities get a little nasty when it comes to their properties. But none took things quite as far as the infamous 2004 fence feud between actor Jim Belushi and former Catwoman Julie Newmar. It started simply enough: Belushi wanted to make the fence around his property higher for more privacy. But Newmar, who had spent decades caring for her prized rose garden, wasn’t having it. She argued the higher fence robbed her plants of sunlight. Years of both public and private griping followed. Belushi accused Newmar of tearing down his fence and egging his house. Newmar accused Belushi of being such a noisy neighbor she had to use air traffic controllers’ earmuffs. Belushi sued Newmar for $4 million for harassment, defamation, and vandalism. The two eventually reached a compromise through mediation, settling the lawsuit. Later Belushi had Newmar on his sitcom According to Jim, in which she played–you guessed it–his grumpy neighbor “Julie”.

Neighborly Tip: Before letting things get so bad that you find yourself getting slapped with a lawsuit, try mediation first. HouseLogic’s guide to mediation gives you a step-by-step process of how to handle an issue with a neighbor before it gets out of hand.

In this issue:

We know what you really want for Christmas!

5 Holiday Hosting Disasters and How to Avoid Them:
Take a look at the most common things that can go wrong when you have guests and learn how to prevent them.

Forward our newsletter and share these cartoons & articles with your friends and family!

Tricks, Not Treats: 6 Horror Stories of Bad Neighbor Behavior

Holiday Fire Safety Tips

Your Realtor,
Steve Charlett

See Our Available Rentals!

Holiday Lighting Safety Checklist

Holiday Fire Safety Tips

The holiday season is one of the most dangerous times of the year for household fires, so take note of these tips to reduce your risk.

 

To keep your household from becoming a holiday fire statistic, here are some safety tips to follow.

 

Cooking

Cooking is the top cause of holiday fires, according to the USFA. The most common culprit is food that’s left unattended. It’s easy to get distracted; take a pot holder with you when you leave the kitchen as a reminder that you have something on the stove. Make sure to keep a kitchen fire extinguisher that’s rated for all types of fires, and check that smoke detectors are working.

 

If you’re planning to deep-fry your holiday turkey, do it outside, on a flat, level surface at least 10 feet from the house.

 

Candles

The incidence of candle fires is four times higher during December than during other months. According to the National Fire Protection Association

, four of the five most dangerous days of the year for residential candle fires are Christmas/Christmas Eve and New Year’s/New Year’s Eve. (The fifth is Halloween.)

 

To reduce the danger, maintain about a foot of space between the candle and anything that can burn. Set candles on sturdy bases or cover with hurricane globes. Never leave flames unattended. Before bed, walk through each room to make sure candles are blown out. For atmosphere without worry, consider flameless LED candles.

 

Christmas trees

It takes less than 30 seconds for a dry tree to engulf a room in flames, according to the Building and Fire Research Laboratory of the National Institute for Standards and Technology. “They make turpentine out of pine trees,” notes Tom Olshanski, spokesman for the U.S. Fire Administration

. “A Christmas tree is almost explosive when it goes.”

 

To minimize risk, buy a fresh tree with intact needles, get a fresh cut on the trunk, and water it every day. A well-watered tree is almost impossible to ignite. Keep the tree away from heat sources, such as a fireplace or radiator, and out of traffic patterns. If you’re using live garlands and other greenery, keep them at least three feet away from heating sources.

 

No matter how well the tree is watered, it will start to dry out after about four weeks, Olshanski says, so take it down after the holidays. Artificial trees don’t pose much of a fire hazard; just make sure yours is flame-retardant.

 

Decorative lights

Inspect light strings

, and throw out any with frayed or cracked wires or broken sockets. When decorating, don’t run more than three strings of lights end to end. “Stacking the plugs is much safer when you’re using a large quantity of lights,” explains Brian L. Vogt, director of education for holiday lighting firm Christmas Décor. Extension cords should be in good condition and UL-rated for indoor or outdoor use. Check outdoor receptacles to make sure the ground fault interrupters don’t trip. If they trip repeatedly, Vogt says, that’s a sign that they need to be replaced.

 

When hanging lights outside, avoid using nails or staples, which can damage the wiring and increase the risk of a fire. Instead, use UL-rated clips or hangers. And take lights down within 90 days, says John Drengenberg, director of consumer safety for Underwriters Laboratories.  “If you leave them up all year round, squirrels chew on them and they get damaged by weather.”

 

Kids playing with matches

The number of blazes–and, tragically, the number of deaths–caused by children playing with fire goes up significantly during the holidays. From January through March, 13% of fire deaths are the result of children playing with fire, the USFA reports; in December, that percentage doubles. So keep matches and lighters out of kids’ reach. “We tend to underestimate the power of these tools,” says Meri-K Appy, president of the nonprofit Home Safety Council

. “A match or lighter could be more deadly than a loaded gun in the hands of a small child.”

 

Fireplaces

Soot can harden on chimney walls as flammable creosote, so before the fireplace season begins, have your chimney inspected to see if it needs cleaning. Screen the fireplace to prevent embers from popping out onto the floor or carpet, and never use flammable liquids to start a fire in the fireplace. Only burn seasoned wood–no wrapping paper.

When cleaning out the fireplace, put embers in a metal container and set them outside to cool for 24 hours before disposal. 

 

By: Pat Curry

Published: November 18, 2009

HouseLogic

Your Realtor,

Steve Charlett

 

 

 

Cell # (720) 308-6835

Office # (720) 870-5321

 

Steve@DrRelocation.com

www.DrRelocation.com

 

 

Doctor Relocation, LLC

13770 E Rice Place

Aurora, Co 80015

 

 

“When You Think of Someone Who Needs to Buy, Sell or Rent a Home,,, Please Think of Me”

 

 

 

 

See Our Available Rentals!

Gorgeous Home in South Aurora

 

Newer Home in Stapleton

 

 

Two Story Denver Town Home

 

 

 

Our rentals are moving quickly! The homes below just rented in November: 

Three Story Townhome in Westminster 

 

Remodeled Candlewyck Condominium

Holiday Lighting Safety Checklist

 

Before you plug in and light up for the holidays, run your decorations through this quick safety check.

 

Inspect light strings.

Discard any that are damaged. Frayed or cracked electrical cords or broken sockets are leading fire hazards. 

 

Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for connecting multiple strings.

The general limit is three strings.  Light strings with stacked plugs can usually accommodate greater lengths than end-to-end connections.

 

Replace burned-out bulbs promptly.

Empty sockets can cause the entire string to overheat. 

 

Make sure outdoor lighting is UL-rated for exterior use.

Exterior lights, unlike those used inside the house, need to be weather-resistant. The same goes for any extension cords used outdoors.

 

Don’t use outdoor lights indoors.

They’re too hot for interior use. For the coolest bulbs and greatest energy efficiency, try LED lights, which come in a wide range of styles and colors.

 

Don’t attach light strings with nails or staples.

They can cut through the wire insulation and create a fire hazard. Only use UL-approved hangers.

 

Take exterior lights down within 90 days.

The longer they stay up, the more likely they are to suffer damage from weather and critters chewing on them. 

 

Store lights safely.

Tangled lights can lead to damaged cords and broken sockets. After the holidays, coil each string loosely around a stiff piece of cardboard, wrap it in paper or fabric to protect the bulbs, and store in a sturdy container until next year. 

 

By: Pat Curry

Published: November 18, 2009

HouseLogic

Doctor Relocation, LLC. • 20551 East Weaver Ave • Aurora, CO 80016

https://drrelocation.com

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