RE/MAX Select Properties

Vancouver West Side's Leading Real Estate Office

Vancouver West Side's Leading Real Estate Office

  • Office: 604-737-8865
  • Fax: 604-737-8512
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RE/MAX Select Properties
Office:604-737-8865
Fax:604-737-8512
RE/MAX Select Properties
5487 West Boulevard
Vancouver, BC
V6M 3W5 CA
 
 
Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Summer BBQ Tips

Now that the summer season is kicking off, it's time to get back in the grilling groove. According to the National Fire Protection Association, gas and charcoal grills cause more than 8,000 house fires each year. Before firing up the grill, homeowners should consider these safety tips:

Grills should be located no closer than 10' (3m) from any structure. Never use a grill under a porch, deck, overhang, carport, or in a garage. Make sure the grill rests on a stable surface and can't be tipped over.

Never use a propane or charcoal grill indoors.

Check hoses and connections on gas grills periodically throughout the grilling season. Replace any cracked or brittle hoses before using the grill. Propane cylinders should never be stored inside a garage or other structure at any time.

Start charcoal fires using a chimney starter instead of charcoal fluid. Not only is a chimney starter safer, but your meal will taste better. If charcoal fluid is used, never add it to the coals once the fire has been lit.

Once the grill is lit, never leave it unattended. It can take just a few seconds for a serious fire to erupt.

While lighting and cooking on the grill, do not wear clothes that are loose-fitting or that have wide sleeves that could catch fire. Use long-handled utensils to handle food while cooking. Wear close-toed shoes while at the grill - you can always change to flip flops later.

Control flare ups by lowering the heat on a gas grill. On charcoal grills, remove the food from the grill and distribute the coals more evenly. If necessary, a flare up can be put out with water from a spray bottle, but remove food from the grill first to avoid smoke contamination.

To help prevent grease fires, remove any accumulated grease and residue from inside the lid of the grill at least every 5-6 uses. Baking soda can be used to extinguish a grease fire still contained within the grill unit.

Always keep young children and pets away from the grill during and after cooking. The grill's exterior can remain hot long for a long time.

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Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Gardening Tips for Home Owners

Spring and summer are when yards and gardens retake their rightful places at the center of attention. This month, Pillar To Post takes a look at several steps that homeowners can take to make their outdoor spaces and their home live compatibly.


Keep water away from the house

Be sure that the ground slopes away from the house all the way around the perimeter. This ensures that any moisture from rain and sprinkler systems will be directed away from the foundation.

The base of shrubs and other plantings should be kept at least 2' away from the foundation to avoid potential problems with roots and drainage. In addition, window wells should be kept free of debris and lined with gravel to help water drain out of the well and into the ground.

Do not leave sprinklers on for too long. Excessive water will not do plants and lawns any good, and may cause problems if there are drainage issues in certain areas.

The right plant in the right place


When a tree is growing very close to a structure, there can be potentially serious problems if the tree grows too tall or too wide for the space. Damage to eaves and roofs can be caused by overgrowth, and there is even a danger of branches or an entire tree falling onto the home. Existing trees should be professionally pruned to lessen the potential for hazard. When planting new trees, homeowners should research potential "candidates" to find how large the tree will eventually grow and make decisions accordingly.

Homeowners should also consider grouping plants that have similar water requirements to avoid overwatering plants that don't need as much. Not only will plants do better, but water bills will be lower over time as well.

Choose plants with maintenance in mind


Some plants end up requiring more maintenance than a homeowner expects. When selecting new planting material, homeowners should seek advice from qualified personnel at a local nursery who will know what plants will do well in their area, their growth habits and maintenance requirements.

Lawns should not be mowed too short or too frequently. Allowing the blades of grass to shade one another helps with water retention and allows grass to grow in more fully. Many newer turf grasses require less mowing than older varieties, and should be considered for new lawn installations. Homeowners can find out more at their local agricultural or extension office.

These are just some of the ways homeowners can increase the enjoyment of their outdoor spaces while ensuring that home and yard are in good shape.

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