Mosquito Awareness

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All it takes for mosquitoes to breed is a cap off of a plastic water bottle with water in it.

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Standing water in drains, gutters, flat roofs, children’s play equipment, toys are mosquito harborages

Do everything practical so that there is not standing water for long periods of time. They breed in days and become adults within

Water in pet bowls, flower pots and bird baths needs to flushed at least once a week to prevent larvae from developing into adults. Mosquito eggs hatch in 24 to 48 hours and it takes 7 to 10 days for them to enter the pupal stage and become adults shortly thereafter.

Adults are a lot like us in that they will seek out shade during the heat of the day and typically rest on the underside of leaves to get out of the sun. For this reason they will rest in shrubbery, ivy, and areas of heavy vegetation. Keeping grass cut and landscape maintained will help to limit them. They are most active at dawn and dusk. When necessary and possible wear long sleeve shirts and pants and use a repellent with DEET on skin and clothing.

Partner Post by: By Chuck Negas of Northwest Exterminating, https://www.callnorthwest.com/

Helping the Hungry, Homeless and Hurting

In celebration of its 50th anniversary, Ghertner & Company is “Giving Back” to organizations in our middle Tennessee community that are making a difference.  Since 1954, the Nashville Rescue Mission has provided food, clothing and shelter to homeless men, women and children in the Nashville community. With the goal of reaching middle Tennessee’s hungry, homeless and hurting, the Mission serves close to 2,000 meals a day, 365 days a year. Each night, an average of 800 of men, women and children find a warm bed and safety from the streets in one of two campuses.  To donate, volunteer or learn more visit www.nashvillerescuemission.org.

  Receiving the check on behalf of the Nashville Rescue Mission is   Rev. Glenn Cranfield, President and CEO   from Scott Ghertner, Co-President of Ghertner & Company.  Others pictured are Andrew Jackson, Ghertner & Company Director of Information Technology and Nashville Rescue Mission Board member, and Jaye Kloss, Ghertner & Company Director of Compliance and Training.

Receiving the check on behalf of the Nashville Rescue Mission is Rev. Glenn Cranfield, President and CEO from Scott Ghertner, Co-President of Ghertner & Company.  Others pictured are Andrew Jackson, Ghertner & Company Director of Information Technology and Nashville Rescue Mission Board member, and Jaye Kloss, Ghertner & Company Director of Compliance and Training.

Informative Topic and Discussion at Complimentary Seminar

The recent March 6 workshop on Community Standards was well attended, and Board members had many comments and questions about rules, fines and enforcement.  One topic of interest was how to manage improvements such as fences which were installed without approval.  Voluntary compliance is the goal, and the importance of establishing standards that are reasonable for each community was a recurrent theme of the presentation.

    Ghertner & Company offers monthly Lunch and Learn Leadership Workshops on a wide variety of topics to assist newly appointed and veteran board members.  Complimentary lunch is provided, and you can learn more or make a reservation by contacting Theresa Savich at 615.277.0346.

Ghertner & Company offers monthly Lunch and Learn Leadership Workshops on a wide variety of topics to assist newly appointed and veteran board members.  Complimentary lunch is provided, and you can learn more or make a reservation by contacting Theresa Savich at 615.277.0346.

Preventing Damage to Wood Surfaces

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 Wood must be properly finished with a paint, stain, or clear sealer. Left
unprotected from the elements, it’s susceptible to rot and decay caused by
moisture.
 Of special concern is the fact that wood expands and contracts with normal
changes in humidity and temperature. These fluctuations may cause paint
finishes to chip and crack, and over time puts stress on caulked seams
around windows, doors, trim, and at corners. If the caulk separates and fails, wood rot may develop.
 Let’s also stress that no bush, tree branches, or shrubbery should be allowed to touch the wooden surfaces of your home. Foliage conducts moisture that can find its way into cracks and tiny openings.

If you have wooden surfaces on or around your home, you know how great it looks when it's well-maintained. You may have also noticed how worn it looks when time and the elements have gotten the upper hand. For the next few months we will talk more about paint, stain, sealers, and caulk. For now, do yourself a favor and evaluate your wood surfaces. Let your Property Manager know if you have concerns.

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How do I Evaluate? Examine the entire surface of your house, looking for problems such as peeling paint, open joints or seams, wet or rotted wood, and any bare surfaces. Also check for cracked, missing, or dried out caulking. Flaking paint occurs when moisture collects under the painted surface. The moisture enters the wood from the unpainted, uncaulked, and unsealed sides, gets absorbed and then rots it out.

Cautionary Note

Mildew, algae, and some types of mold can not only discolor wooden surfaces…they
can also hasten the rate at which paint, stain, and caulk must be re-applied. Pressure
washing yearly is a good way to avoid costly repairs and save maintenance dollars.

Partner Post by:  Ghertner Maintenance & Remodeling, Inc.  

https://ghertner.com/ghertner-maintenance-and-remodeling/

The weather and your plants

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Warmer temperatures this winter has led to trees and flowers blooming early. A sudden brief late freeze is not likely to kill or cause long-term damage to your shrubs and trees, though the early leaves and blossoms may suffer some damage. Most trees and shrubs will recover from this type of damage.  The main deciding factor in how much damage your flowering tree or shrub sustains  will be how far along they were in the process of breaking dormancy. If the leaf buds were still quite small, and had just begun to unfurl, you should still be in good shape.  Even if actual leaves had begun to sprout, they are just the initial budding. Once the weather warms again, your tree or shrub will put out another flush of leaves. Foliar buds are more resistant to cold damage than flowering buds, but may still experience some browning or misshapen leaves.  Once the plant has fully leafed out, the freeze damage may not even be visible.

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If a hard frost is in the forecast, covering your plants may be beneficial. Covering with sheets or ground covers will not protect from freezing temperatures, but it will shield tender buds from the damage of a hard frost. Plastic covers can be disastrous,
as they retain the moisture, which then freezes. A woven, breathable cover allows
ventilation and some moisture exchange, and doesn't encourage fungal diseases.

If cold damage does occur to your trees and shrubs, resist the urge to immediately
prune back the damaged areas. If you prune back the damage too soon, you may en-
courage new budding and growth, which leaves the plant susceptible to the next
threat of cold weather. Try to wait until after the last frost date for your area, which
for Tennessee is early April. Once the threat of subsequent freezes is past, you can prune back branches that seem to be beyond recovery to the point of live, green wood. Be aware that pruning in the spring months will cut away the buds that have already begun to form, reducing the flowers this season, and eliminating the fruits that would have formed on fruiting trees.

 

Partner Post by: Color Burst Landscapes

http://colorburstlandscapes.com/ 

Property Management Beginnings in 1968

Frank Ghertner started Ghertner & Company in 1968 and the company is celebrating its 50th Anniversary of excellence in property management in 2018.  This article and picture from the Tennessean newspaper dated April 7th, 1968 shows Frank Ghertner as one of the new owners of the Park Road Apartments on West End Avenue in Nashville, TN.  The seven story, 30-unit community boasts of luxury style living and many modern features.  The purchase price was $750,000 and the new owners were planning some improvements for the property built in 1962. 

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Spring Time is Termite Time

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Temperatures in the 70’s, several days of rain, this is not only a recipe for spring flowers but increased termite activity and termite swarms that split up to produce new colonies. They are a necessary part of nature to help dispose of fallen trees and other debris but unfortunately termites don’t know the difference between a fallen tree in the woods or a row of house where trees once were.

Termites never go away. They may slow down with cooler temperatures but they are always eating and working whether it be deeper in the ground or moving into the walls of your home. They eat the wood studs in the walls or any cellulose material such as paper in sheetrock, hardwood flooring, books, important papers, or even a painting on the wall.

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It is important to keep clearance between the soil, mulch, or any landscape material and the siding of a structure. This makes it harder for termites to get into your home and easier for a proper inspection to be done to look for termites. Keeping landscape plants such as shrubs and ivy trimmed back off of the home will help with keeping termites out as well as other pest such as ants. Keeping firewood and lumber away from the structure is important as well. Maintaining the structure by taking care of roof leaks, moisture damaged siding and trim as well as keeping things caulked will help to keep down conducive conditions that can encourage termite activity.

An annual inspection is an important thing to do to be proactive in protecting your home. Over time a traditional liquid treatment will dissipate allowing termites to move in. If it has been more than 8 eight years since the structure was treated it is imperative to “update” the termite protection with either a traditional liquid treatment or a termite baiting system to protect your investment. Again annual inspections are important to check for activity as well as changes in the environment around the structure that may become conducive conditions. Conducive conditions simply means an environment that is inviting and hospitable to termites. If a bait system has been installed it is important to have it inspected and maintained in order to remain effective.

A good termite program is important in protecting your home from termites much like insurance for fire is imperative for protecting your investment.

Partner Post by:  Chuck Negas of Northwest Exterminating, www.callnorthwest.com

 

Choosing Great Colors for a Condo Association

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What Good Color Can Do For You

 

If you've driven around town looking for painting ideas for your condominium or building, you may have been struck by the extremes.

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If you've driven around town looking for painting ideas for your condominium or building, you may have been struck by the extremes.

In one group there are rows of boring beiges, grim grays and “what's with all the whites”? Then, just when you think you might nod off behind the wheel, you're startled by an infusion of bold blue, garish green and terrible turquoise. And that's just on the trim.

 

Attract new residents, increase your property value

While you would never advocate that a condominium looks pretty in pink, you are struggling to create a color scheme that will appeal to most of the prospective new residents who visit your building. You know: if they don't like what they see, they will do exactly what you did: keep driving down the street.

Then, too, you realize that paint holds the potential to increase the property value of your condominium and other buildings. Paint may not be the most sizable financial investment you will make in your condominium, but it's an investment nonetheless. What the exterior painting of a condominium lacks in financial force it makes up for in execution, for painting projects often take time to complete even when weather conditions are ideal.

For all reasons, you'd prefer to choose a winning color palette you feel confident about. To achieve this positive outcome, consider five tips from paint experts who understand your wish to stand out – in a good way:

Isolate what will not be painted first

Start off by segregating those elements that will not require paint, such as the chimney, vinyl siding and windows, railings or doors. Take a good look at the colors of these elements. Then use them as a baseline as you consider a palette for the exterior painting of your condo.

Learn about the color wheel

A conscientious painting contractor will explain the basics of the color wheel – how contrasting colors complement each other and also how staying within one color family might be the best choice for the exterior painting of your condo.

Honor history

Your condominium and other buildings don't have to be “old” or reside in a historical district for you to take a bow to history. The town itself may teem with traditional hallmarks. That same contractor can show you how to choose shades that were commonplace at the time your building was constructed.

Choose light colors to burnish size

The grandest estates in the country are often painted white, including a most distinguished home on Pennsylvania Avenue in Washington, D.C. Light colors make buildings look larger. And psychologically, they are thought to provide a mental lift. If white is too stark for your taste, downshift to a pale cream, ivory or linen. The differences may sound subtle, but they will look distinctly different on the expanse of a condominium.

Use dark colors to add drama

Frank Lloyd Wright immortalized the technique known as “banding,” or using darker colors to accentuate lighter ones. You can employ this dramatic approach on shutters, trim and doors. You can even use dark colors to disguise building flaws.

If you're already feeling that it's “better to play it safe” with paint color, trust your good instincts. And realize that few improvements can invigorate a building like paint. People *will* notice – and hopefully, will put on the brakes when they pull up in front of your freshly painted building.

Partner Post Conributor: Renovia, Nashville, TN

Supporting the Saddle Up! Effort to Assist Youth

Saddle Up!’s mission is to provide children and youth with disabilities the opportunity to grow and develop through therapeutic, educational and recreational activities with horses.  Over 240 riders benefit from the care and expertise shared by its 250 active volunteers.  Founded in 1990, this non-profit organization provides a year-round program on its 34-acre farm near Franklin, TN. For many riders, Saddle Up! is one of the few, if not the only, recreational programs available to them.  Learn more at saddleupnashville.org.

In celebration of its 50th anniversary, Ghertner & Company, is “Giving Back” to organizations in our Middle Tennessee community that are having a positive impact with a $500 donation.  

 

  Pictured in the check presentation are Ghertner & Company managers and leadership associates: Kim Basham, Jaye Kloss, Elecia Beard, Scott Ghertner (Co-President) and Deborah Wallace. Receiving the donation are Tina Carpenter, Saddle Up! Development Coordinator and Rachel Brenner, Ghertner & Company accounting associate and Saddle Up! volunteer.

Pictured in the check presentation are Ghertner & Company managers and leadership associates: Kim Basham, Jaye Kloss, Elecia Beard, Scott Ghertner (Co-President) and Deborah Wallace. Receiving the donation are Tina Carpenter, Saddle Up! Development Coordinator and Rachel Brenner, Ghertner & Company accounting associate and Saddle Up! volunteer.

Tennessee Children’s Home – First “Giving Back” Recipient

In celebration of its 50th anniversary, Ghertner & Company is “Giving Back” to organizations in our middle Tennessee community that are making a difference.   The Tennessee Children’s Home in Spring Hill, TN is one of four locations across the state that provides for physical, social, emotional, spiritual and educational needs of children and youth in a safe and secure environment.  The children live in on-site homes with other children and with House Parents. The residential care is structured to help the children be successful, with an on-site school, tutoring services, church attendance, counseling services, and substance abuse counseling.  Learn more at www.tennesseechildrenshome.org.

 Receiving the check on behalf of the Children’s Home is Chris Doughtie, Director of Development from Scott Ghertner, Co-President of Ghertner & Company.  Others pictured are Jaye Kloss, Ghertner & Company Directory of Compliance and Training, Linda Southergill, HOA Board Member, Patrick Landrum, Ghertner & Company Assistant CAM, and Jeff Campbell, Ghertner & Company Community Association Manager. 

Receiving the check on behalf of the Children’s Home is Chris Doughtie, Director of Development from Scott Ghertner, Co-President of Ghertner & Company.  Others pictured are Jaye Kloss, Ghertner & Company Directory of Compliance and Training, Linda Southergill, HOA Board Member, Patrick Landrum, Ghertner & Company Assistant CAM, and Jeff Campbell, Ghertner & Company Community Association Manager. 

Protecting Vacant Real Estate Property

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In a time when layoffs and foreclosures are widespread, your firm may be forced to manage vacant real estate. The insurance risks and liabilities associated with owning vacant property can be extensive, and to ensure you are adequately protected, it is important to know these risks. In addition to purchasing comprehensive insurance coverage, there are numerous preventive strategies for maintaining vacant properties to reduce risk and liability.

Potential Risks

There are a host of risks and concerns associated with owning vacant property. Vacant buildings are an obvious target for theft, trespassing and vandalism. For example, the rising cost of copper has given rise to an increase in the theft of copper pipes from vacant properties. In addition to any loss or property damage that may occur, keep in mind that the owner of a property can be held liable for criminal activities or accidents that take place on the premises.

In addition, vacant properties are susceptible to undetected damages, such as fire, water damage, electrical explosions, wind or hail damage, and mold. A study by the U.S. Fire Administration shows that approximately 30,000 fires occur every year in vacant buildings, costing $900 million annually in direct property damage. Many of these incidents occur in vacant buildings due to small, undetected maintenance issues; someone in an occupied building would have recognized and handled the problem before it caused a larger loss.

In certain facilities, there may also be environmental hazards that the owner needs to consider. Facilities that are used to store chemicals or other pollutants should ensure that such materials are removed or securely stored—the owner may be held liable for any hazardous materials that contaminate groundwater or other nearby natural resources. Also, underground fuel tanks present serious challenges and thus should be frequently and carefully inspected by professionals.

Other Ways to Mitigate Risk

In addition to extending coverage, there are some simple steps that owners of vacant property can take to limit their risk and liability.

  • Prevent vandalism: Notify local authorities of vacated properties so they can watch for criminal behavior. Maintain an “occupied” appearance to the property— mow the lawn, have mail forwarded or picked up regularly and install light timers and/or a security system.
  • Limit liability: Make sure the property is free from significant hazards (e.g., broken railings or steps, broken windows) that could cause injuries to anyone on the property—this could include police officers, maintenance workers, firefighters or even trespassers.
  • Avoid damage: Performing regular maintenance on the property can decrease the odds of sustaining damage. Make sure the heating system and chimney are cleaned and inspected regularly. Have the plumbing system winterized to prevent frozen pipes. Periodically inspect roof, insulation, attic, basement, gutters and other areas of the property for any necessary repairs, mold, damage or other problems. Consider installing smoke detectors that are tied to a centrally monitored fire alarm system so the fire department will be notified in the case of an alarm. Remove all access material and combustibles from in and around the building.
     

Insuring Residential Properties
Most insurance companies include a clause that the homeowner’s insurance will expire if a home is left vacant for more than 30 or 60 days. This leaves the property owner financially vulnerable for all previously noted risk. However, many insurance companies do offer
vacant property insurance, also known as vacant building insurance or vacant dwelling insurance.


Unoccupied Commercial Building Insurance
Vacant commercial buildings are more difficult to insure
because they present greater risks, including increased chance of theft, malicious damage and burst pipes. It is important to disclose all relevant facts when seeking insurance, including the reason for the property’s vacancy and a schedule of any work to be done on the property.

Because of the increased risks and liability associated with a vacant property, these types of insurance tend to be costly—ranging from one and a half to five times the cost of a property insurance policy. It is important to look beyond the price and consider the suitability and
comprehensiveness of the coverage being purchased.
 

Partner Post Contributor:  Robins Insurance Agency, Inc , Nashville, TN 

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Tax Seminar for Community Association Managers

As part of Ghertner & Company’s ongoing industry training, Roger Perry, CPA, spoke to our managers about taxation for community associations, and the differences between audits and reviews.  Mr. Perry’s recent discussion included details on the tax filing options for associations.  He also explained the importance of knowing when to check with a CPA when an association anticipates unusual “non-fee income”, such as compensation for cell tower easements on common property, which could impose a tax liability.  This was timely for the Community Association Managers, as we enter the tax season.

Associates’ Donation Boosts Program Assisting Local Children

Our Kids, is a nonprofit organization based in Nashville, whose mission is to provide expert medical evaluations and crisis counseling services in response to concerns of child sexual abuse, to increase community awareness, and to conduct research and offer education and training about child sexual abuse.

Company team members donated $650 to assist this program in its effort to assist children in need in middle Tennessee.  Ghertner & Company also matched the donation to give greater impact to the cause. 

Learn more about the organization and its programs at www.ourkidscenter.com.

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Associates Food Donation Spreads Thanksgiving Cheer

Team Members for Ghertner & Company participated in a two-week food drive to benefit Second Harvest Food Bank of Middle Tennessee during the month of November.  Associates from all departments were able to collect and donate over 180 pounds of food to those in need during the holidays.

Second Harvest Food Bank exists to feed hungry people and solve hunger issues acting as a central distribution center in the Middle Tennessee community.

 

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