Don’t Over-Spend when Over-Seeding

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We all desire a great looking lawn! But after a summer like this one, even the best of lawns tend to struggle from hot & dry conditions. Due to the many variables that affect turf quality, there is no single remedy to get your grass back in the shape you expect, but rather a series of steps and treatments that can help revive your lawn. One option to consider is Aeration & Over-Seeding (A&O). Here are a few tips regarding the A&O process:

The early Fall season (Sept/Oct) is the optimal time to perform this task, as cooler temperatures promote germination and growth of fescue seed. As a result, the new grass is well established prior to the harsh summer months, which gives it a better chance for long term success. The Spring season is NOT the recommended time to perform A&O because any tender newly germinated grass will not have time to develop a mature root system to sustain itself thru our hot and dry summers. 

We recommend only performing the A&O process 1 time per year during the Fall, allowing you to focus on weed control and fertilization of your lawn throughout the balance of the growing season. Those who perform A&O in the Spring, will limit their ability to successfully control weeds while the new seedlings are germinating.

Applying too much grass seed can cause more harm than good, due to added competition for light and nutrients within the established lawn. Lawns that are over-crowded may result in fungal issues due to restricted air circulation and moisture retention. When conducting A&O, the recommended fescue seed application rate is 4-6 lbs. per 1,000 square feet. If your lawn is already full and lush, you may not want to A&O each year to minimize competition within your lawn, which saves you money!

If your lawn is predominately bermuda turf, the A&O process may be a waste of funds. Bermuda will typically out-compete fescue in full sun exposures. In addition, bermuda is a spreading type turf which fills gaps and bare areas naturally. I recommend that you consult a qualified service provider to help identify your turf type(s) (fescue vs bermuda) and determine the percentage of each, prior to engaging in the A&O process.

Most Middle TN lawns include a healthy mix of fescue and bermuda grass. When budget is a concern, we would recommend only ‘spot’ seeding in areas in need such as bare or thin areas, instead of blanket seeding the whole site. To save money, consider only seeding high traffic areas, thin partially shaded patches, or select focal areas. Being strategic regarding where to perform A&O on your property will help you realize real value while not overspending. A qualified professional service provider can help guide you through the process of spending your money wisely while protecting your image and investment.

Partner Post Written by: 

Scott Oldham - Business Development Manager with LSI.  www.LandscapeServicesInc.com

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Supporting Autism Speaks

 In celebration of our 50th Anniversary, Ghertner & Company’s “Giving Back to our Community” effort supports non-profit organizations within Middle Tennessee who are making a difference in the lives of those they serve.   Autism Speaks  was the recipient of the August donation and emphasis.  Autism Speaks is dedicated to promoting solutions, across the spectrum and throughout the life span, for the needs of individuals with autism and their families through advocacy and support; increasing understanding and acceptance of people with autism spectrum disorder; and advancing research into causes and better interventions for autism spectrum disorder and related conditions.  Representatives from Autism Speaks shared with and fielded questions by Ghertner & Company associates on Friday, August 24th.   Learn more at AutismSpeaks.org.  

In celebration of our 50th Anniversary, Ghertner & Company’s “Giving Back to our Community” effort supports non-profit organizations within Middle Tennessee who are making a difference in the lives of those they serve.  Autism Speaks was the recipient of the August donation and emphasis.  Autism Speaks is dedicated to promoting solutions, across the spectrum and throughout the life span, for the needs of individuals with autism and their families through advocacy and support; increasing understanding and acceptance of people with autism spectrum disorder; and advancing research into causes and better interventions for autism spectrum disorder and related conditions.  Representatives from Autism Speaks shared with and fielded questions by Ghertner & Company associates on Friday, August 24th.  Learn more at AutismSpeaks.org. 

The Termite 411

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Although spring is considered “Termite Season”, we find these pests all year around. This is often when swarms and infestations are seen in Middle, Tennessee. Now is the time to have your home inspected to get peace of mind or to get a termite problem service. Termites can be silently destroying your home without you even knowing. Your landscaping can be attracting and feeding these pests without your knowledge. Even your HVAC can be supplying them with water.

What Attracts Termites

Termites and pests feed on dead plants or wood like your home’s foundation, wooden floors, shelves, carpets, and even your untreated furniture. Another surprising food source for termites is mulch. An HVAC unit has the water tube draining next to your foundation can also be a problem.

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Ways to Keep Termites Away

Here are a few ways that you can prevent the termites in your home.

§  Make sure to eliminate any moisture problem.

§  Keep your AC drain pointed away from the house.

§  Remove all food sources; dead wood, rotting tree stumps, scrap wood, and even an untreated fence post.

§  Wood should not contact the soil. It’s also best that you place screens outside the vents.

§  Use quality mulch.

§  Fix any improper gutter drainage.

 

Time For Help

If you suspect termites are in your home, it is best to do something about it immediately. Always get an annual inspection; the termite specialist will know and reveal the extent of damage in your home, if any. There are other pest control company’s that offer termite treatment. We are one of the few that offer complete satisfaction.

 

Ask Questions

Never rush decisions when dealing with a termite problem. There are lots of questions to ask your specialist, how much of your home is damaged? How much does it cost for this kind of work? What are they going to use to exterminate the termites? For those homeowners who want to permanently eliminate termites in their homes, we offer long-term solutions. With our help your home will be a termite-free. Don’t let these termites destroy what you’ve invested and worked for.

Partner Post by:  Absolute Pest Control, http://www.absolutepestco.com/

 

Lunch & Learn Seminar Road Trip

The first remote Lunch & Learn seminar was recently held at the Kennesaw Farms clubhouse in Gallatin, TN.  There was a good attendance with many board members present from nearby Home Owner Associations to hear and discuss the topic of “Board Member Roles and Responsibilities”.  Industry leader, Kathleen Sutherland, presents a variety of topical seminars at Ghertner & Company’s Learning Center each month.  This remote site seminar is provided in different areas of Middle Tennessee for the convenience of our HOA board members who may find it difficult to attend the Nashville location.

 

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Celebrating 2018 Top Workplace Award

Ghertner & Company has been awarded a 2018 Top Workplace in the small business category by the Tennessean, in partnership with the Philadelphia-based employee research firm, Energage.  Based solely on employee survey feedback covering 24 factors in seven areas: alignment, effectiveness, connection, management, engagement, leadership and “the basics”, Ghertner & Company once again was recognized as a leading company to be employed with in Middle Tennessee.

  On hand to accept the award are Scott Ghertner, Co-President of Ghertner & Company along with Jaye Kloss, Director of Compliance and Training, and Stacy Adams, Director of Human Resources.

On hand to accept the award are Scott Ghertner, Co-President of Ghertner & Company along with Jaye Kloss, Director of Compliance and Training, and Stacy Adams, Director of Human Resources.

Freedom Rings at July 4th Celebrations!

July 4th was a wonderful day for community members to come together to celebrate the freedom enjoyed in the USA.  Parades and cookouts were held at many of the Homeowner Associations that Ghertner & Company manages. 

In Williamson County, the Brookfield Homeowner’s Association sponsored its Annual 4th of July parade! Over 100 families participated with the Brentwood Fire Department leading the way in Engine #4.  The community located off Sunset Road and Concord Pass Road in Brentwood is comprised of 464 homes. The HOA celebrates its 20th Anniversary this year. Barbara Rotnofsky, Board Member, was the Chair of the July 4th Festivities.

On the other side of the county, The Arbors at Autumn Ridge also had a parade with seventy-five families participating. Burger Republic's Food Truck was there to serve the homeowners after the parade.  The community located in Spring Hill is comprised of 287 homes. The HOA celebrates its 7th Anniversary this year.  Alisia Deblois, Board President, and Joe Noga, Board VP, were the Chairs of the July 4th Festivities. 

Elecia Lewis Beard with Ghertner & Company is the Community Association Manager for both properties. 

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Training Volunteers in Disaster Response

As a leading non-profit organization dedicated to disaster response, Hope Force International is comprised of individuals who are committed to utilizing their expertise to inspire, equip and mobilize thousands of trained volunteers into areas of crisis around the world.  HFI specializes in training volunteers in disaster response so they are prepared and allowed to respond, often in restricted areas, when disaster strikes. People are seldom adequately prepared to meaningfully come alongside others who are suffering. Hope Force provides a pathway of service for caring individuals, allowing them to become willing, capable responders.  In celebration of its 50th anniversary, Ghertner & Company is “Giving Back” with a $500 donation to Hope Force in support of their work.  To learn more visit www.HopeForce.org.

  Hope Force International founders Jack and Cherie Minton receive the donation from Scott Ghertner, Co-President of Ghertner & Company.  Also present are Ghertner & Company associates John Knouff, Elecia Beard and Jaye Kloss.    

Hope Force International founders Jack and Cherie Minton receive the donation from Scott Ghertner, Co-President of Ghertner & Company.  Also present are Ghertner & Company associates John Knouff, Elecia Beard and Jaye Kloss.    

Renewal House Restores Lives

In community with addicted women and their children, Renewal House fosters healing, resiliency and continuing recovery to enhance family health. Founded in 1996, this Nashville non-profit organization provides specialized addiction treatment and recovery programs for women and their children. They address the unique needs and specific issues that trigger and affect a woman’s addiction.  They believe that when you treat and heal the whole person, you restore a life that can leave a positive lasting legacy.  As part of its 50th anniversary celebration, Ghertner & Company presented Renewal House with a $500 donation to support their work in our Middle Tennessee community.  To learn more about this organization visit www.RenewalHouse.org.

  Receiving the check on behalf of Renewal House is   Pamela Sessions (center)   from Scott Ghertner, Co-President of Ghertner & Company and Jaye Kloss, Director of Compliance and Training at Ghertner & Company.    

Receiving the check on behalf of Renewal House is Pamela Sessions (center) from Scott Ghertner, Co-President of Ghertner & Company and Jaye Kloss, Director of Compliance and Training at Ghertner & Company.    

Dealing with Rodents Squirrels and Pest

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Are Mice, Rats, Squirrels, Flying Squirrels and other rodents and pest a concern?

What can you do to keep them from coming into your home?

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Check out these tips to prevent a rodent infestation.

1. Clean up spilled food immediately.
2. Put away all food at night, including pet food and bird feeders.
3. Keep food, including pet food and bird seed, in sealed, airtight containers.
4. Keep garbage can lids tightly sealed.
5. Declutter your attic and basement, especially anything made of cardboard.
6. Store any items you can on shelves rather than in the floor.
7. Keep your yard clear of debris.
8. Keep grass and shrubs cut short.
9. Trim shrubs and trees away from the sides of your home.
10. Store firewood off the ground and a safe distance from your home.
11. Repair holes in your foundation, garage, and interior walls and any gaps in your roof.
12. Seal any openings larger than 1/4″.
13. Use rubber seals under garage doors.
14. Use door sweeps on exterior doors.
15. Use weather stripping around windows and doors.
16. Use screens that are in good repair on doors and windows.
17. Seal around pipes, drains, and vents.
18. Use chimney caps.
19. If you suspect you have a rodent problem, contact a pest control professional.

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

Metro Codes Q&A Equips Managers

As part of the ongoing professional manager training, a representative of the Davidson County/Metro Codes department participated in the weekly managers meeting on Friday, June 8.  Bill Penn, Assistant Director, Property Standards division, gave an overview presentation and fielded questions on a wide variety of topics from building permits and inspections, sheds and outbuildings, abandoned vehicles, fencing and yard maintenance, occupancy requirements and regulations for operation of home-based businesses.  More resources are available at http://www.nashville.gov/Codes.

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“Communication is Key” Seminar for Board Members

The June 5th Lunch & Learn seminar gave Board members the opportunity to learn about the value for regular communication within their community.  Topics presented dealt with who needs to send and receive information, what type of content should be shared and how often, and what methods to use.  Communication resources such as social media and email were discussed.  Attendees, including Board members and Community Association Managers, were able to share about the effectiveness and challenges of what works.

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  Ghertner & Company offers monthly leadership workshops as a complimentary service to their HOA clients.  A wide variety of topics are presented by industry professionals along with lunch.  Contact   Theresa.Savich@ghertner.com   to learn more about these seminars.

Ghertner & Company offers monthly leadership workshops as a complimentary service to their HOA clients.  A wide variety of topics are presented by industry professionals along with lunch.  Contact Theresa.Savich@ghertner.com to learn more about these seminars.

Pet Adoption Agency Offers Hope and a Home

In celebration of its 50th anniversary, Ghertner & Company is “Giving Back” to non-profit organizations in our community.  Since 1999, the Freedom Farm Animal Sanctuary is one such organization dedicated to rescuing abused, abandoned and neglected animals in and around Middle Tennessee. FFAS encourages proper pet care and advocates spaying and neutering to help stop pet overpopulation. They use a system of foster homes to house all the animals in their care and are committed to the long-term care and placement of all animals that are rescued.  Since FFAS does not use euthanasia as a means of population control, the all-volunteer board and staff works diligently to place as many animals as possible into adoption.  Visit freedomfarm.net to view pets available for a home or to support the organization.

 

  Receiving the check on behalf of the Freedom Farm Animal Sanctuary is   Kim Patton (second from the left)   from Scott Ghertner, Co-President of Ghertner & Company.  Other Ghertner & Company associates in attendance were Jaye Kloss, Stephanie Gray, Janine Mathews, Henry Puckett and Danielle Hayes.   

Receiving the check on behalf of the Freedom Farm Animal Sanctuary is Kim Patton (second from the left) from Scott Ghertner, Co-President of Ghertner & Company.  Other Ghertner & Company associates in attendance were Jaye Kloss, Stephanie Gray, Janine Mathews, Henry Puckett and Danielle Hayes.   

Puckett Station Pool Party Kicks Off Summer Fun!

Families joined their neighbors to enjoy a great summer kick off with a pool party on Saturday, May 12th to celebrate the opening of pool season.  The weather did not disappoint with 90-degree temperatures and sunny skies.  Many volunteers and board members worked together to make the event a success.  In celebration of its 50th Anniversary, Ghertner & Company co-sponsored this event with Ole South Builders.

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Playground Liabilities and Safety

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Properties with playground facilities are a valuable amenity for families with children. They give children a designated area to play, allowing parents to feel that their children are somewhere safe. However, playgrounds are commonly the site of many injuries, ranging in severity from minor to serious. As a property manager, you need to balance providing a playground facility that is safe and fun, while making sure to protect against the liability that you’re exposed to by having a playground on your property.  

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Duty of Care

Some lawsuits related to playground injuries have centered on negligence due to lack of proper supervision. While it is not practical to expect a playground to be monitored every moment children are present, there is an expectation of a reasonable level of adequate supervision. The duty to provide safe play areas and proper supervision should be placed on those responsible for operating playgrounds.

The duty of care owed by a playground operator is the degree of care that a person of ordinary prudence charged with similar duties would exercise in the same circumstances. A public or private landowner has a duty to provide adequate supervision and to maintain the premises and playground surfaces in a reasonably safe condition.

In play areas that are not regularly attended to by a designated supervisor, signs should be posted to communicate common rules for the play area, such as under what age a child must be accompanied by an adult, the hours the playground is open and that glass bottles and alcoholic beverages are prohibited.

Safe Playground Design

Another important liability comes from dangerous or unsafe play equipment. It's important for children to have age-appropriate gear to play on so that they do not injure themselves on improperly sized equipment. When designing a playground for children of all ages, equipment should ideally be separated into three distinct groups: for children under age 2, for 2- to 5-year-olds, and for 5- to 12-year-olds.

Other safety considerations should be taken into account when planning a playground:

  • Items with moving parts, such as seesaws and swings, should be located in a separate area and allow for ample space for the moving parts.
  • Minimize the number of spaces that could trap a child's head, arms or legs. All openings, such as rungs on a ladder, should be either smaller than 3.5 inches or larger than 9 inches.
  • Wooden equipment should not be cracked or splintered. Any cracked or splintered equipment requires immediate attention for repair or replacement.
  • Any sandbox areas should be inspected regularly before children use them. Be sure that these areas are covered every night to prevent animal contamination.

The selection of safe and age appropriate equipment is just as important as the selection of a safe ground surface for the playground area. Trips, slips and falls will happen and a safe ground surface can reduce the severity of an injury or prevent an injury completely. Concrete, asphalt and blacktop are all extremely hard surfaces and are generally considered unsafe for playground areas. Woodchip ground cover is much softer, but debris hidden in the woodchips, or the woodchips themselves, can cause falls and minor injuries. Rubber mats offer the most stability, especially for younger children, and allows for the easiest wheelchair access. Property managers and maintenance staff should make sure the ground surface stays level and free of debris that could cause children to trip and fall, such as rocks, tree stumps and tree roots.

Protecting Your Risk

Keep informed of the latest in playground safety developments. One of the most authoritative playground safety standards is published by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission in its Handbook for Public Playground Safety. The handbook contains a wealth of information regarding playground surface and equipment hazards. Any playground operator is generally expected to be familiar with these standards, and many states now require that all public playgrounds conform to them.

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

First Annual Spring Fling 5k

Over 30 associates participated in Ghertner & Company’s inaugural Spring Fling 5k to promote better health and build camaraderie.  The event took place at the MetroCenter Greenway on Friday, April 20th and was promoted by the company’s wellness “Champs” to give co-workers an incentive to get active during the Spring and pending warmer weather.  Ghertner & Company rewarded all those involved with a paid half day off while Humana insurance, the company’s provider, gave team members the opportunity to earn "wellness program" points through activities such as these to spend in their online store. 

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Board Member Presentation to Packed Room

Many board members took advantage of the May Lunch & Learn volunteer leadership workshop on Tuesday, May 1st.  Kathleen Sutherland, Director of Development and Training, shared the topic “Creating a Code of Conduct”.  This included what the code of conduct should include and instruction on how it can help a board function.  Attendees were able to ask questions and participate in the discussion.

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  Ghertner & Company offers complimentary Lunch & Learn seminars on a wide variety of topics to board members of managed communities.  The June topic is about communication within an association. 

Ghertner & Company offers complimentary Lunch & Learn seminars on a wide variety of topics to board members of managed communities.  The June topic is about communication within an association. 

Supporting Organizations that Make a Difference

Two great organizations, that have an impact upon our Middle Tennessee community, are the recipients of April’s “Giving Back” effort. 

Second Harvest fulfills its mission “to feed hungry people and work to solve hunger issues in our community” by utilizing a network of individual, local nonprofit agencies and corporate partners in our 46-county service area.  Learn more about volunteering or donating at www. secondharvestmidtn.org.

 

  Receiving the check on behalf of Second Harvest Food Bank is   Shelby Huggins, Coordinator of Events and Community Relations,   from Scott Ghertner and Steve Ghertner, Co-Presidents of Ghertner & Company.  Others pictured are Ghertner & Company Associates Kim Basham, Jaye Kloss and Russell Baltz.

Receiving the check on behalf of Second Harvest Food Bank is Shelby Huggins, Coordinator of Events and Community Relations, from Scott Ghertner and Steve Ghertner, Co-Presidents of Ghertner & Company.  Others pictured are Ghertner & Company Associates Kim Basham, Jaye Kloss and Russell Baltz.

The Boys & Girls Club of Maury County strives to enable all young people in their programs to reach their full potential as productive, caring and responsible citizens.  The focus is to offer a supportive environment where academic success, healthy lifestyles and good character can be achieved.  Find out how to be involved at www.bgcmaury.com.

  Stacy Adams, Ghertner & Company Director of Human Resources and Jaye Kloss, Ghertner & Company Director of Compliance and Training presented the check to this eager group of young people and staff.

Stacy Adams, Ghertner & Company Director of Human Resources and Jaye Kloss, Ghertner & Company Director of Compliance and Training presented the check to this eager group of young people and staff.