Home burglaries are a serious problem in the Bay Area. Despite that, too many homeowners do not give much thought to securing their property against break-ins. Folks often become motivated to improve the situation only after they have been burglarized. There are a number of measures you can take now to discourage crooks.Read More
Category Archives: Home Maintenance
By Don Dunning | May 22, 2015
Navigating a home purchase and escrow can be draining. And then there is the hassle of moving. Once you are in the home, it seems like a perfect time to kick back and chill. Doing so, however, without working on some important items, can later create serious problems you might have been able to avoid. Health, safety and security should be addressed first.Read More
By Don Dunning | March 29, 2015
“Things never go the way you expect them to. That’s both the joy and frustration in life.”
– Michael Stuhlbarg
It began when I went to the freezer for a yogurt pop and found it as a liquid mess. Other foods were partially defrosted. Checking the refrigerator section confirmed we were in big trouble.
We quickly found a reliable appliance repairman who substantiated that it was time to replace our 10-year-old refrigerator. What sounded like a simple solution soon turned into a series of unforeseen, frustrating events.Read More
By Don Dunning | May 23, 2014
I confess to sometimes procrastinating with home maintenance chores. Over the years, however, I have learned that biting the bullet and taking care of these duties can save shekels. It also helps avoid the aggravation of temporarily losing the use of those things we take for granted, like the toilet, shower or washing machine.Read More
By Don Dunning | January 24, 2012
A private sewer lateral (PSL) is the pipe that connects the sewage line in a building to the public sewer main that is usually in the street. As of January 16, 2012, all properties in the City of Oakland, except condominiums and large retail structures, are subject to an ordinance that requires inspection and possible repair of PSLs under certain circumstances.
This is a good thing for those of us who live in Oakland and for the environment. There are details, however, for buyers and sellers to know and understand to avoid problems. Reading my previous two articles on this subject, Sewer Line Blues and Sewer Line Blues II, will likely open your eyes to what could happen if you do not pay attention.Read More
By Don Dunning | May 7, 2005
When competing in this ultra-hot market, buyers generally have little choice but to purchase “As Is.” During the excitement and heat of battle, many buyers do not fully consider the possible ramifications of buying a house with problems. Years later, when it is too late, it may become painfully apparent.
Sometimes, the issues can be relatively minor and inexpensive. In another instance, the repair cost, especially if put off to a future date, could be way more than you ever imagined.Read More
By Don Dunning | May 3, 2002
Recently, a local couple was surprised to find one of their bathrooms infected with mold. In addition to the shiny black area on the floor, stringy looking, plant-like tentacles were growing through the wall.
They were later told these were filaments of mold called “fruiting heads” Thus began an unwanted, but interesting, learning process about mold and the seemingly innocent ways it can occur.Read More
By Don Dunning | April 5, 2002
In buying or maintaining a home, we logically tend to emphasize those areas that cost the most to repair or replace. Plumbing is usually downplayed because the need to totally overhaul it is rare. Difficulties with plumbing, however, can lead to other, expensive issues. Three common problems deserve attention.Read More
By Don Dunning | November 16, 2001
When was the last time you gave even a momentary thought to the existence and potential health risks of mold in the home? California is about to enact the Toxic Mold Protection Act that will require mold disclosures for residential and commercial real estate transactions. Mold now belongs on your list of home buying and selling variables.Read More