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Safety & Security

The most recently published posts in the Safety & Security category
HOW TO PROTECT YOUR HOME FROM RAIN     Get your roof ready for the rains. Inspect your roof twice per year to avoid costly problems that can escalate into tremendous cost. Look for cracks along the ridge of your roof and where your shingles fold over to form the cap. Inspect the valleys of your roof (the area of your roof with a downward slope). Make sure that the...
Read Post [Posted on 09/19/2014 By Michelle Cannon]
You've just gotten approved for a mortgage and now you’re waiting to make it to the closing table. Make sure you don’t throw your loan approval into jeopardy by making one of these common mistakes: Making a big purchase: Avoid making major purchases, like buying a new car or furniture, until after they close on the home. Big purchases could change your debt-to-income ratio that...
Read Post [Posted on 09/18/2014 By John Askins]
Knowing your neighbors may be good for your heart — and not just emotionally — according to a new study by psychologists at the University of Michigan. The more social connections you have in your neighborhood, the less likely you are to die from a heart attack, according to the study, which was published in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health.The study is based on assessments...
Read Post [Posted on 09/14/2014 By John Askins]
You can help save the planet while also saving cash, according to the Alliance to Save Energy. The average U.S. household spends about $3,425 to power a car and $2,175 on home energy costs--in other words, about $5,600 on energy costs per year. That number is likely even greater with rising fuel and utility costs.The Alliance is offering up some pointers on how to trim those yearly expenses w...
Read Post [Posted on 09/14/2014 By John Askins]
A number of Texas state regulations are in effect that limit some of the powers of homeowner associations (HOAs).Homeowners living in a neighborhood with an HOA now must be permitted to: Display the U.S. or Texas flag, or flags of military branches. Free-standing flagpoles no more than 20 feet tall are also allowed. Hang a religious display on the front door. (HOAs can, ho...
Read Post [Posted on 09/11/2014 By John Askins]
Know about exclusions to coverage. For example, most insurance policies do not cover flood or earthquake damage as a standard item. These types of coverage must be bought separately. Know about dollar limitations on claims. Even if you are covered for a risk, there may be a limit on how much the insurer will pay. For example, many policies limit the amount paid for stolen jewelry unless items a...
Read Post [Posted on 09/08/2014 By John Askins]
As we enter the peak of hurricane season and the beginning of fall weather, many home owners may ask themselves: Have I done enough today to disaster-proof my home? Forbes has provided several tips on how to disaster-proof a home, including: Trim the trees. Make sure the trees around your property are trimmed and pruned. Forbes points out that if your overgrown tree is near a power line, you shoul...
Read Post [Posted on 09/07/2014 By John Askins]
Though the housing market is trucking along, that doesn't mean real estate scams have gone away. Home owners have been duped out of an average of $4,000 to $5,000 from scams, but even five-figure losses aren’t uncommon for those who have fallen prey to fake loan modifications and other housing fraud. Forbes highlighted three of the most common real estate scams today:1. Rental scams...
Read Post [Posted on 09/07/2014 By John Askins]
Drivers in Fort Collins, Colorado, can take another bow before calmly climbing behind the wheel. For the fourth time in a decade, Allstate has named it "America's Safest Driving City" in its annual analysis of car accidents.Fort Collins has been in the top 10 every year, according to the insurance company, which assessed drivers in the 200 largest U.S. cities. The most dangerous city to ...
Read Post [Posted on 09/06/2014 By John Askins]
From our family to yours...Have a Safe and Enjoyable Labor Day, 2014!John AskinsRoyce Realty - Houston ...
Read Post [Posted on 09/01/2014 By John Askins]
The beach is so central to California's identity that the right of surfers and sun lovers to access the sand is guaranteed in the state Constitution. But now so many local landowners want to block public access to their chunks of the coveted coastline that there are several hundred alleged violations pending before state officials, including a highly charged case in which Vinod Khosla, a green ene...
Read Post [Posted on 09/01/2014 By John Askins]
Home owners may find higher electricity costs are taking a bigger chunk from their wallet. The average price of electricity to residential customers reached its highest point in May than in the past two years, increasing 3.4 percent year-over-year, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration.In May 2012, customers were paying an average of 11.90-cents per Kilowatthour nationa...
Read Post [Posted on 08/30/2014 By John Askins]
Violent crime in the U.S. has fallen, according to FBI crime data. However, violent crime increased in more than half of the cities that have among the highest crime rates in the nation, according to a review of crime data by 24/7 Wall St.“The cities with the highest crime rates tend to have particularly high poverty rates, high unemployment, and low median income,” according to its analysis. The ...
Read Post [Posted on 08/30/2014 By John Askins]
The American Lung Association, which has compiled the list of dirty cities, said the 20 million residents that live in these areas are at increased risk of asthma and chronic bronchitis.Seven of the dirtiest cities in the U.S. are in California.The 10 dirtiest cities are:1. Bakersfield, CA2. Los Angeles, CA3. Fresno, CA4. Visalia, CA5. Hanford, CA6. Phoenix, AZ7. Birmingham, AL8. Modesto, CA9...
Read Post [Posted on 08/30/2014 By John Askins]
Even though renters insurance is relatively affordable, 65 percent of renters don't purchase coverage, according to the Insurance Information Institute. The average renters insurance plan costs about $16 a month, or less than $200 per year, according to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners.  "It can be extremely expensive to have to re-buy the entire contents of your home, so ...
Read Post [Posted on 08/29/2014 By John Askins]
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