Posted on March 24, 2015 in A La Carte Services, Spring, Summer, Tips by ShannonNo Comments »

While the snow might be falling today, it is a good bet it won’t last for long.  It is time to start thinking about and getting scheduled for all the spring and summer repair work.  Winter takes a toll on homes and we have such a short time to get all the repairs done before the cold will be back.

 

A few things we like to focus on at Home Fridays are a full interior spring clean.  This includes carpets, windows (inside and out) and a deep cleaning that includes everything from the baseboards, the fridge to the barely used and dust filled guest room.

 

For the exterior we are looking at how the paints and decks look.  Seasonal maintenance work allows you to get the most out of your investment.  Annual deck maintenance is far less expensive then regularly replacing the deck.

 

Yard maintenance has been a big one this year.  With the light snow fall and a season of crazy wind, most yards are looking pretty bad.  The needles and leaves need to be cleaned up, the gutters cleaned, everything trimmed up and brought back to life.  Grass might need overseeing and definitely needs some fertilizer.  This is also a great time to think about replacing any plants that might not have made it through the winter.   Sprinkler startup is not that far away and with that weekly mowing and yard maintenance.  A new layer of bark dust or compost is a great way to punch up the yard and make it shine.

 

With the inside clean and the outside getting back in shape, time to start thinking about anything structural that might need attention.  Gutters falling, warped siding or trim boards  or roof inspections for anything else that may have failed during the winter.

 

So don’t delay – get a start on the season and don’t be left behind.  Some might call this summer, but we call it ‘repair season’.   If you need help with any of these items on your home please give us a call to schedule  (541)317-3088.

 

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Posted on July 2, 2012 in Published Articles, Summer, Sunriver Scene by ShannonNo Comments »

As published in the Sunriver Scene – July 2012 Issue  By Shannon Bassett – Caretaking Commander, Home Fridays

 

It’s finally planting time again in Central Oregon.  But planter beware, in this zone with its risk of frost 365 days a year, you can’t plant just anything.

 

Although our Sunriver microclimate can be especially challenging, knowing what to plant will help. Here the flowers that work well include Yarrow, Purple Coneflower, California Poppy and Daisies.  Dry river beds are the perfect environment for Karlfoester Grass, Tufted Hair grass and Idaho Fescue.  Other plants commonly seen include Western Serviceberry, Kinnikinnic and Wood’s Rose. 

 

Be aware, however, that just because trees, bushes and flowers will grow here doesn’t mean that you can actually plant them. You must follow the Sunriver Owners Association rules and regulations and first get yard improvements approved by the Design Committee. Call the owners association representative at 541.593.2411 when planning for details and approval.  You can see a full list of Sunriver approved plants on the SROA website http://www.sunriverowners.org/Recommended-Plants-&-Trees~164421~13934.htm.

 

Taking care of the outside of your home is so much more than planting the approved grass and plants that will enhance the home.  Seasonal clean-up is the easiest way to prevent big problems after the long winter.  An ignored tree might end up falling on the house, clogged drains will set you up for ice dams, and broken sprinkler pipes can flood the yard, kill off your landscaping and create big water bills.  Do you have everything taken care of on your home?

 

 

Weed Control

As every gardener and homeowner knows regular weeding and keeping on top of the noxious weeds is critical to maintain an appealing landscape.  …   You might not realize however, that if you don’t eliminate noxious weeds you could actually get fined. Through hand pulling, cutting and sparingly-used chemicals you can keep all these weeds under control.

 

Sprinkler Maintenance and Monitoring

Start up sprinklers in the early season and monitor the amount of water the yard is receiving.  At the beginning of the summer you don’t need to use a lot of water.  As the heat intensifies the plants require more water so leave your sprinklers on longer.  For the beginning of the summer you won’t want to water for more than 6 -8 minutes a stretch.  Later in August extend the time to approximately 10-15 minutes per watering. When the snow starts to fly it is time to make sure those sprinklers have been winterized.  Failing to do this will wreak havoc on your system and potentially damage your plants, crack your pipes and cause flooding.

 

 

Pine Needle Removal from Roof and Gutters

Needle-covered roofs and gutters are common after the windy spring we have had.  Regular removal will keep the roofs clean and reduce the chance of future issues.

 

 

Ladder Fuel Reduction

Removal of combustible materials establishing a 15-foot firebreak around homes and decks is the goal of the Ladder Fuel Reduction Plan.  Thinning trees, removing Bitterbrush, dead vegetation, limbing and removing trees all fall within the mandates of the Ladder Fuel Reduction Plan which is defined on the SROA website on the Environmental Services page.

 

With all the landscaping advice, let’s not forget the most important thing; here’s to a great summer, enjoy.

 

To get help with your home call me, the Caretaking Commander, at Home Fridays. I have been buying, renovating and managing residential and commercial properties for over 20 years. My locally-based company, Home Fridays (homefridays. com), offers professional home management and concierge services to vacation home owners. You can reach me at 541/317-3088 or shannon@homefridays.com.

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Posted on March 23, 2011 in A La Carte Services, Disasters, Fall, Spring, Summer, Winter by ShannonNo Comments »

I am on jury duty for the next two weeks.  A daunting process here in Deschutes County.  You call a number every evening after 6pm to find out if you are needed in court the next day.  Effectively putting everything on hold until April…  Thankfully we have lots of back up here at Home Fridays to cover in my absence.

We might be a small business – but we have built in stop gaps, backup plans and coverage in the case of illness and vacation (or in my case jury duty).  Life goes on and we cannot always be at work.  So it is really important to have the right plan in place to cover everything 24/7.  Our phones are forwarded to make sure someone is available.  The office has coverage each day to schedule appointments.  We have someone around each day to check homes, prep homes and deal with the unexpected.  As we all know – nothing ever breaks on Monday morning at 9am. 

Just this week we have dealt with birds in an attic (broke in through some vents and decided to nest).  Excluding mice from one house and ants in another home.  Something is in the air this spring!  Everyone wants to move into our beautiful homes.  Meanwhile construction continues on 4 homes as we act as the eyes and ears for our owners on remodel jobs big and small.  Today we repaired a doorbell at another house.  Never a dull moment at Home Fridays.  But all things that are getting taken care of in just the last 2 days because we have coverage in my absence. 

It is sure nice to know that we will have coverage – no matter what occurs!

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Posted on May 28, 2009 in Summer by ShannonNo Comments »

Many of my clients rent their homes out through out the year to get extra income.    With down turn in the economy and the overall fear factor, rentals seem to be a bit slower this summer.  I recently stumbled across a great blog with lots of owner rental information.  Their article ‘What To Do If Your Peak Summer Weeks Are Not Fully Booked ‘  is great reading and can be found at http://tinyurl.com/qtr3vw   While Home Fridays does not find renters, we do take care of everything for the home between and during rentals.  There is nothing worse when a problem occurs and you are thousands of miles away and unable to resolve.  As the local contact for the guests, we can get the problem fixed quickly.  Whether it is a guest locking themselves out, an oven that doesn’t work or making sure the guests leave on time and the house is undamaged and prepped for the next guests.  Home Fridays is your solution for it all!

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Posted on August 6, 2008 in Summer by ShannonNo Comments »

Just as we hit the peak of summer – it is time to make sure the house is ready for winter.  Now is the time to make sure the roof repairs have been completed, the skylight leaks are fixed, and don’t forget about the decks.  The better you take care of it now, the longer it will last.  And of course maitenance is typically cheaper then repairs.  Cracked skylights won’t be a problem until later -but once it is snowing inside the house, you will wish the repair had been done during the sunny weather. 

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