Colonial Estates Christmas Party

Annual Colonial Estates Christmas Party
For Park Residents

Tuesday – Dec 18th – Entertainment at 5 pm – Dinner at 6 pm

CEHOA will provide meat
Potluck Dinner – see the sign up sheet in the Clubhouse

Free for CEHOA members – Non members – $2
Bring table setting and BYOB

Donations for the entertainment is appreciated

Bring non-perishable food for the Food Bank
Sign up by Dec 12th

Stay safe and warm this winter

Stay safe and warm this winter and avoid costly repairs, an article by Paul Denikin

All homeowners know there is always plenty to do. It can even seem a little overwhelming at times.  If you’re ready to dive into fall home maintenance but don’t know where to start, get organized with these handy guidelines to prepare your home for winter weather.

winterImage courtesy of Pixabay

Smoke and carbon monoxide detectors.  It’s vital that you have working smoke and carbon monoxide detectors in your home.  Fortunately, according to the experts at B & Q, maintaining and checking your units is easy.

  • Test the batteries in your detectors every week by pressing the “test” button.
  • Replace batteries annually. Test the new batteries immediately after installing them.
  • Replace the batteries in the unit immediately if the low-battery warning sounds.
  • Always replace all of the batteries in each unit with new ones.
  • Clean your devices with a slightly damp cloth or the soft brush hose attachment of your vacuum every few months.
  • Never use cleansers, paint or solvents on your detectors.
  • Set an alarm or note on your calendar when you need to do the next round of maintenance.
  • Some experts recommend changing the batteries when you change your clock for daylight saving.

Maintain your furnace.  According to the professionals at, it’s wise to have your furnace inspected and serviced by a professional technician before winter.  Also, replacing the air filter in your furnace helps it to run more efficiently.  This easy chore keeps the unit maintained, extending its life and helping to avoid costly repairs.  Some experts recommend following these simple guidelines:

  1. Ensure you have the proper size filter.
  2. Locate the filter housing at the bottom of your furnace.
  3. On the frame of the old filter there is an arrow showing the correct direction for the filter.  Note the direction of the arrow.
  4. Remove the old filter.
  5. Insert the new filter in the correct direction.

Fireplace and chimney maintenance.  There is nothing more cozy than enjoying your fireplace in winter, but you need to have it properly inspected and cleaned to avoid chimney fires.  This service should be performed by a professional chimney sweep.

Prevent frozen water pipes.  When water freezes it expands.  As temperatures plummet in winter it’s possible for the water in your lines to freeze and burst your pipes, which can lead to flooding as well as pipe repairs.  To prevent what could be costly damage to your home, experts recommend taking some simple steps.

  • Disconnect garden hoses from outdoor spigots, including “frostproof” faucets.
  • Apply heat tape to vulnerable lines.
  • Insulate unheated areas such as crawl spaces, attics and basements.
  • A professional plumber can inspect your home and give you a recommendation if you are unsure of vulnerabilities.

When frigid weather arrives:

  • Allow water to trickle during cold snaps.
  • Increase the temperature in your home.
  • Open cabinet doors in your kitchen and bathroom so warmer air flows around pipes.
  • Open doors on pantries or closets that house pipes.
  • Keep your garage door closed.

Service your mower.  Old oil and gas are harmful to your mower’s engine if allowed to set up over winter.  Follow your owner’s manual to replace air, gas and oil filters, change the oil, and drain most of the gas from the tank.  Add a gas stabilizer to the tank before storing for winter.  It’s also a great time to have the blade sharpened so you are ready for that first cut next spring.

Doing some upkeep now will help you stay safe and warm this winter.  Check your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors, properly maintain your furnace and fireplace, prevent frozen water pipes and service your lawn mower.  By following these helpful tips, your home will be ready for the coming seasons.  And you’ll feel better knowing you’ve taken care of business.


Recent Theft

  • There has been a theft in our neighborhood. SSERT leader Debbie would like all of us to be aware. An expensive bicycle disappeared from a neighbor’s home on 9/5/18. Police & management were notified. It is strongly suggested that all of us lock up valuables and your sheds. Items with serial numbers should be recorded for police to use for recovery. Also take photos of items, if possible. And if you think a neighbor is not on this notice list, you might do the “neighborly” thing & give them a heads-up.
  • ALSO, the first meeting of the CEHOA “season” is set for 2 p.m. on Thurs., Sept. 20. Mark your calendars.

All for now. Your “Hot Flash” reporter~~~~~Craig

Affordable and Doable: Tips for Adding Value to Your Home

Homeowners often fall into the get-it-all-done-now trap, a high-pressure state of mind that will cost anyone a boatload of money and can lead you to make rash decisions when you should be thinking it all through. If you’re not in a must-sell predicament, why not be discriminating and treat it as a marathon rather than a sprint? The better and more informed your decisions, the more value and aesthetic appeal you’ll add to your home. Most homeowners have a long list of things they’d like to get done, but it’s important to be organized and prioritize what you can do now and in the near future based on your financial circumstances.

In general, realtors are recommending upgrades over major renovation projects as more economical ways to increase value. There are many ways to upgrade your home that won’t break the bank, from replacing kitchen and bathroom fixtures to improving window treatments and adding new artwork. Bear in mind that the best upgrades are those that you can do yourself without having to hire a contractor to see it through. Adding value without making a large investment is an excellent formula for staging a home for sale.

The basics

There’s nothing like giving a home a clean, fresh look if you’re trying to add value. Decluttering your environment is a simple but important first step. Get rid of everything you don’t need anymore and organize the other items that are lying around so you can store everything away neatly. This may make it easier to spot areas that need touching up as you clean and clear away all the unnecessaries. Keep an eye out for areas that need a fresh coat of paint, both inside and out. The next step is to add new lighting, one of the most important features if you’re looking to add some pizazz. Stylish new fixtures with white metal switch plates can brighten things considerably.

A splashy kitchen

Kitchen and bathroom upgrades are some of the most valuable additions you can make to your home. A nice faux cherry wood finish can make your cabinets look brand new and give the kitchen a classically sophisticated appearance. Best of all, you can do it yourself. Consider adding a hanging pot rack with some shiny new kitchen accoutrements or putting in a colorful tile backsplash to give your kitchen a bright and appealing look.

Bring the bathroom to life

Home buyers always pay special attention to the bathroom because renovations there tend to be among the most expensive. Fortunately, a few simple improvements can make yours look as though you’ve invested heavily. Granite, though the most expensive material for countertops, is more affordable in the bathroom with its smaller counter space than in the kitchen. Under-mount sinks are another hot and trendy item these days, and make a much stronger impression on buyers than the traditional drop sink. Bathroom vanities and tops are relatively easy to install and make a cost-effective addition.

A solid roof

A good solid roof is a must-have for any home buyer. If yours is looking a little ragged, make sure that any loose shingles are replaced, and that it’s sufficiently vented. You might also consider having a thorough inspection done to ensure all’s well. If repairs are needed, be sure that any roofing company you contract with is fully certified and registered with the Better Business Bureau. Be wary of high-pressure tactics and shifting bids, as these are two of the most common indicators of a scam.

Getting the most value for minimal expense is a fundamental strategy for staging and selling a home. Fortunately, it’s fairly easy to make simple and inexpensive upgrades that will appeal to the most discerning buyer. And you’ll get great satisfaction from making many of them yourself.

Courtesy of Pixabay