Problems and repair

Tankless hot water heaters

“Don’t get attached to that hot water heater, it will fail on you.” We tell our clients this because direct-fire hot water heaters are unreliable appliances that are created with built-in obsolescence. Many have five, seven, or ten-year warranties. They will last five years and three weeks, or seven years and three weeks, or ten

By | 2017-06-02T07:26:13+00:00 June 7th, 2017|Categories: Energy efficiency, Problems and repair|Tags: , |

Houses that don’t belong on the land

There are some houses that never should have been built. You can't even level them and build a better house on that lot. Either the lot is too small to build on — by current standards — or the land is not fit to hold a house. I have seen both. Potentially unsolvable problem, type 1

$3000 towards knob and tube removal

Some electrical repair can’t wait. Knob and tube wiring is one of those problems. This wiring, from 80-100 years ago, has not aged gracefully. It is considered a fire hazard by most insurance companies. Our clients are often told that they cannot get insurance, or they can only get insurance if they promise to remove

Specialty windows

When do windows cost more than an arm and a leg? When the windows are unusual sizes or shapes. When the window installation involves a change in window size or when the area around the window is rotted and needs to be rebuilt, the cost goes up. There are many specialty windows that we see

Looking clearly at windows

Buyers beware! Replacing windows will cost you, big. What windows should I expect to replace? Lead paint risk: Any window that was installed before 1978 is likely to have lead paint on it. Lead paint on windows is particularly bad for risk of lead poisoning. When a lead-painted window is opened and closed, it rubs

By | 2017-02-28T17:48:52+00:00 March 22nd, 2017|Categories: Energy efficiency, Problems and repair|Tags: , , , |

International Women’s Day

Sisterhood is powerful! I only know one carpenter’s term that is feminist. It is the term for attaching a second floor joist to a cracked or under-built joist, beam, rafter, or stud. The term for this is called “sistering.” Sistering is powerful: it can stop sagging all over the house. This is how it’s done.

By | 2017-02-27T07:43:34+00:00 March 8th, 2017|Categories: Problems and repair|Tags: , , , |

Fall in love with beauty

A thing of beauty is a joy forever! In honor of Valentine's Day, I share work that makes my Buyer Broker heart go pitter-pat with joy. A quality electrician or plumber will install their materials with care. Although loose, wiggly wires carry current as well as these will, the care taken to do a neat

By | 2017-02-12T16:46:53+00:00 February 15th, 2017|Categories: Problems and repair|Tags: , |

Snow shoveling — who is required to do it?

Winter. Yes, the days are short now. Soon we'll see (and be shoveling) snow. Will we see white stuff like last year, or the year before? I get asked questions about snow removal, as a real estate agent. Since they are legal questions, I depend on Attorney Richard Vetstein for accurate legal answers to general