Uncategorized May 25, 2022

Should You Mount Your TV Over the Fireplace?

Should You Mount Your TV Over The Fireplace?

Should You Mount Your TV Over the Fireplace?

The fireplace is often the focal point of any living room or den. As such, it makes sense that the space above the fireplace would seem the ideal location for mounting a TV. But is it a good idea?

When you’re considering installing a TV above a heat source, there are several factors you need to weigh:

How Much Heat Can Your TV Handle?

TVs are not heat resistant. Each has an optimal operating temperature, which varies depending on the manufacturer and model of TV you have. And if the heat from your fire surpasses that optimal temp, you could significantly shorten the lifespan of your TV and void your warranty. Because of this, it’s a good idea to measure the temperature in the spot you want to hang your TV before installation and always follow manufacturers’ suggestions.

Pro tip: Measure the temperature by taping a thermometer to the spot on your wall where you want to hang your TV. Make sure you check the temp often over the course of several hours when the fire is on. You’ll also want to make sure you’re checking during the hottest part of the day with the fire on, to ensure you’re getting a solid idea of what the max temperature in that space can be.

Is the Heat Source Electric, Gas, Wood Burning or Radiant?

Each type of fireplace generates a different amount of heat. For example, radiators or electric fireplaces, which are mostly ornamental, are known to put out less heat than a gas fireplace or traditional wood-burning fire. A heat blower — which pushes the warm air to the center of the room — may also lower the temperature of the wall above your fireplace Over your fire?

A mantelpiece can help redirect some of the heat from your TV. The amount of heat that’s directed away can depend on the thickness of the mantel, as well as how far it protrudes off the wall. Keep in mind that simply having a mantel doesn’t automatically create perfect conditions for hanging your TV above the fire. You still want to measure the temperature where you plan to mount the television.

Will the TV Be at a Comfortable Angle When Mounted Above the Fireplace?

You want the spot you pick for your television to make for a comfortable viewing experience. Think about the distance of your sitting area from the fire and the height at which the TV will be hung. If you’re going to be craning your neck upwards for hours while watching your favorite shows, you might want to reconsider mounting your TV above the fireplace. And it’s best to think about this before you go through the process of installing it.

Is It Easy to Mount a TV Over the Fireplace?

It may seem like an easy enough task to hang your TV on a wall, right? Well, there’s a little more to it than you might think.

First of all, you’ll need to make sure your wall is stable enough to support the TV. Are you working with brick? Drywall? Each may require a different mount. Do you need the television to pull away from the wall? Do you know how to properly conceal the wires, so you don’t have an unsightly tangle of cables marring your living room’s look? And will the TV need a special mount so that it can be angled for optimal viewing?

There are many details to take into account when deciding whether you should mount your TV over the fireplace. To make sure your TV is properly installed, it’s a good idea to work with a professional.

Uncategorized May 25, 2022

HVAC Tips and Tricks

HVAC Tips And Tricks

HVAC Tips and Tricks

You’ve just bought a new home, and you’ve got a long list of things to do while you get settled in. Or, maybe you’ve been in your home for a while and are beginning to think about routine maintenance. Your HVAC unit might not be top of mind, but it’s important to think about. For many homeowners, HVAC problems can be a cause of high electric bills and pricey repairs. By making sure your unit is in top working order, you’ll save yourself some frustration – and money – down the road.

Follow these tips and tricks to get the most out of your HVAC system:

Change your air filters

Changing your air filters is one of the easiest, but most important, HVAC maintenance tasks. It helps ensure your unit is performing efficiently, which can save you money and extend the life of your system. It will also improve the air quality within your home.

Air filters trap particles like dust, pet hair and other debris to prevent them from entering the system and affecting performance. When filters are dirty, units work harder, leading to higher energy bills and the potential for breakdowns. Generally speaking, you should change your air filter every 90 days. If you have pets or have allergies, you should change it monthly.

Use your nose and ears

When it comes to HVAC issues, it pays to stay ahead of them. The sooner you can get a problem taken care of, the easier and less expensive the fix is likely to be. Some common warning signs of HVAC problems include strange smells and odd noises. For example, a rotten-egg smell could indicate a gas leak, which is extremely dangerous. Mustiness, burning odors and chemical smells are also warning signs of a problem.

Likewise, clanging, banging, whistling or scraping sounds could also indicate a problem with the components of your unit.

Be mindful of plants

Plants and landscaping are a great way to add interest and personality to your yard. In the summer months, some shade around your HVAC unit can help keep it cool and reduce your electric bills. It’s important to make sure, though, that there is appropriate clearance around your unit, as crowding it or obstructing the airflow can cause problems. Typically, you should have 3 feet of clearance around your unit and 5 feet of clearance from the top.

Look for plants that won’t drop a lot of leaves or debris on your unit, and consider adding a latticework covering to help keep the area around your HVAC clean.

Add a ceiling fan

A ceiling fan is an easy way to save some money on your electric bills. In the summer, it will help cool your rooms off. In the winter months, you can reverse the direction of the blades to help keep your rooms warm. If you’re an American Home Shield® member and have purchased a ceiling fan, their  ProConnect pros can install it for you for only $159. Be sure to check that this service is available in your area.

Get a tune-up

HVAC tune-ups are a great way to make sure your unit is in top working order. Schedule these twice a year – once in the spring as temperatures begin to warm up, and once in the fall as they begin to cool off. During a spring tune-up, technicians check refrigerant levels and system pressure, inspect the contactors, check the condensate lines, and perform other tests to make sure your A/C is performing at its best.

Don’t let an HVAC breakdown stress you out. Keep these tips and tricks in mind to keep your unit in top working order – and save a dime or two – all year long.

Uncategorized May 18, 2022

How to Clean Your Dryer Vent: 9 Mistakes to Avoid

How to Clean Your Dryer Vent: 9 Mistakes to Avoid

Dryer vent cleaning tips so your house never catches on fire.

Close up of silver dial on white dryer | Safely clean dryer

Dryer fires are a real and very scary hazard, and they most often originate in the metal tube between your dryer and the wall. That's what you need to clean out. Plus it will help your dryer last longer and run more efficiently.

Cleaning a dryer vent goes way beyond wiping off the lint filter between loads. And if you don't do it, your house could catch fire.

Just avoid these dangerous mistakes while cleaning out your dryer vent:

#1 Forgetting to Unplug the Dryer

Safety first: One of the most important dryer-vent cleaning tips is to remove the machine's power cord from the wall outlet to avoid getting shocked. For gas-powered appliances, turn off the gas supply to prevent leaks.

#2 Using the Wrong Equipment

Tiny dryer lint fibers can cling to the walls of the duct, so it's worth investing in equipment that does the job right. The Lint Lizard, about $30, attaches to the end of your vacuum cleaner and is very good at sucking up dryer debris. The Everbilt Dryer Vent Cleaning Kit, about $17, comes with attachments for cleaning long ducts.

#3 Attempting to Clean a Long Vent Yourself

While some basic equipment and DIY skills should work for most homes, it's worth calling in a professional if your dryer has an especially long duct. Most can do the job for about $100.

#4 Neglecting to Check the Duct for Damage

While you're cleaning the duct, take the opportunity to go over its surface to check for cracks or tears. Patching them up will help your dryer run optimally.

#5 Bending the Duct Too Much

Ducts bend fairly easily when you handle them, which you'll want to avoid. When you reattach the duct to the dryer, make sure there are no sharp turns or bends in the tube, which will create crevices for lint to accumulate and may lead to breaks.

#6 Reattaching the Duct with Duct Tape

Despite its confusingly spot-on name, this is perhaps the only thing duct tape can't do. It can corrode from the heat of the dryer. Better to use aluminum tape, which can take the dryer heat.

#7 Routing the Vent Into an Attic or Crawlspace

Remember, the lint that accumulates in your dryer vent is flammable. There's only one place the exhaust should be going to maintain dryer vent safety, and that's outdoors. Stick to cleaning your dryer vent, and leave any major work, like rerouting the vent, to the pros.

#8 Overlooking Moisture Sensors

While it has nothing to do with your actual vent, if your dryer has a moisture sensor, keeping it clean will help your dryer function efficiently. So, you might as well do it while you're working on the vent. The sensor is a thin metal bar often located right below the dryer door. You can remove the lint, dryer-sheet chemicals, and other debris with a cotton ball and rubbing alcohol so the sensor can do its job properly.

#9 Not Cleaning the Dryer Vent Often Enough

This is one maintenance job you shouldn't put off. At least once a year — or more if your machine is getting a real workout — you should give your dryer vent a good cleaning. These 10 steps will guide you through the process:

How to Clean Your Dryer Vent Safely

  1. Unplug the dryer or turn off the gas supply.
  2. Pull the dryer away from the wall.
  3. Detach the duct, the wide tube that sends the dryer exhaust outside.
  4. Shake out loose lint and use a vacuum cleaner and tools to remove the remaining lint from the duct
  5. Vacuum lint from the outside vent.
  6. Clean the floor around the dryer to get rid of debris.
  7. Check the dryer duct for any cracks or tears and replace the duct if damaged.
  8. Carefully reattach the dryer vent with screws, clips, or aluminum tape.
  9. Return the dryer to its normal position.
  10. Turn the power supply back on.
Uncategorized May 13, 2022

Peak Selling Season – How is the Inventory Movement?

Hope you enjoy this article. I would love to help you and your loved ones with the sale and/or purchase of real estate. Feel free to refer them to me. I appreciate you very much. Thank you.


Uncategorized May 3, 2022

What is Proposition 19?

Made Effective April 1, 2021, allows homeowners 55 or older, those with severe disabilities, and victims of wildfires and natural
disasters to transfer their tax assessments anywhere within the state of California to a primary residence of equal value with no
property tax increase, or a more expensive primary residence with an upward adjustment within two years of the sale of the original
primary residence.

 Eligible homeowners can transfer their tax assessments up to three times.
 Made Effective February 16, 2021, requires that inherited homes that are not used as principal residences, such as second homes
or rentals, be reassessed at market value when transferred to children or grandchildren.
 Allocates additional revenue or net savings resulting from the ballot measure to wildfire agencies and counties.

Proposition19 builds off of Proposition 13, passed in 1978, which limited property taxes to 1% of a home’s value, based on the year
the house was purchased. Proposition 13 also restricted the amount that taxable value can go up every year to 2%, even if a home’s market value increased much more.
Proposition 19 allows homeowners who are 55 or older to transfer the taxable value of their old house to a new home of equal value or a
more expensive home, thereby avoiding the big jump in property taxes they would otherwise face. This is designed to encourage seniors
to enter the real estate market.
Proposition 19 also changes tax reassessments on inherited properties and makes it no longer possible for inherited homes to maintain
the same low property tax rate enjoyed prior to the inheritance if the heir does not move into it as a primary residence. Children who inherit their parent’s home, but only intend to keep it as a second home or rent it out, would see a big increase in property taxes under
Proposition 19. Further, when the inherited property is used as the recipient’s principal residence, but has a market value of $1 million
more than the property’s taxable value, an upward adjustment in assessed value would occur.

Let me give you couple of examples:


A 55-year-old couple purchased their home 30 years ago for $110,000. The taxable value of their home is now $200,000 (the $110,000 tax base value increased 2% each year for 30 years). Their annual property tax bill is $2,200 (1.1% multiplied by the taxable base). Under Prop 19, the couple can sell their home for $600,000 and transfer the property tax base of their original home to a replacement home anywhere in California, up to three times.

  • Example #1: Buying an Equal or Less Expensive Home:

    If the couple sells their home for $600,000 and buys a replacement home for the same amount or less, the couple could transfer the lower tax base of their original home to the replacement home and save $4,400 on their annual property tax bill. By transferring the original home’s tax base ($200,000) to their replacement home, the couple would pay the same amount in property taxes ($2,200) after moving – instead of paying $6,600 on the replacement home’s purchase price of $600,000.

  • Example #2 Buying a More Expensive Home:

If the couple sells their home for $600,000 and buys a more expensive home for $700,000, they could transfer the property tax base of their original home to the replacement home and save $4,400 on their annual property tax bill. Instead of paying $7,700 in taxes on the $700,000 purchase price of the replacement home, the couple would pay $3,300 because the new tax bill would be calculated by adding the original home’s tax base ($200,000) to the difference between the purchase price of the replacement home ($700,000) and the sales price of the original home ($600,000).

For more information on Proposition 19 and to discuss your personal situation, please reach out to me at 408-835-4317.

Uncategorized May 2, 2022

Homeowners’ Exemption

Homeowners’ Exemption

If you own and occupy your home as your principal place of residence, you may be eligible for an exemption of up to $7,000 off the dwelling’s assessed value, resulting in a property tax savings of approximately $70 to $80 annually.

Claim form for Homeowners’ Property Tax Exemption



You must be a property owner, co-owner or a purchaser named in a contract of sale.
You must occupy your home as your principal place of residence as of 12:01 a.m., January 1 each year.

Principal place of residence generally means where:

  • You return at the end of the day
  • Your vehicle is registered
  • You are registered to vote
  • Your mail is delivered

A dwelling does not qualify for the exemption if it is, or is intended to be, rented, vacant and unoccupied, or the vacation or secondary home of the claimant.

Filing period and exemption amounts

For the year in which you occupy the dwelling on lien date (January 1), the full exemption is available if you file by 5:00 p.m. on the following February 15.

If you file a claim between the following February 16 and 5:00 p.m. on December 10, 80% of the exemption is available.

The homeowner’s exemption may be applied to a supplemental assessment

You must file a claim form and be eligible for the exemption before the next lien date (12:01 a.m., January 1) following the date of the supplemental event.

You must occupy your home as your principal place of residence within 90 days after the change of ownership or completion of new construction.

Homeowners’ exemption ineligibility

Once the homeowner’s exemption is granted, it will remain in effect until such time as the homeowner is no longer eligible; i.e., the residence is no longer owned or no longer occupied as the principal place of residence by the homeowner claiming the exemption.

Additionally, recording a deed (i.e. transferring the property into or out of trust, adding or removing co-owner names, or recording a deed to make name changes), will automatically terminate the exemption for the upcoming fiscal year.  A new claim will automatically be sent to the new owner of record.

You are responsible for notifying the Assessor when you are no longer using the property as your principal place of residence. You are only eligible for one homeowner’s exemption at a time within the state. Homeowners’ Exemption Termination Notices are inserted annually with your secured property tax bill.

This information is a synopsis of the homeowners’ property tax exemption. You may call the Assessor’s Office at the number below for more specific information.

Homeowners can call the Assessor’s Exemption Unit at (408) 299-6460 or e-mail the Assessor’s Office at Exemptions@asr.sccgov.org . When contacting or e-mailing the Assessor’s Office please provide the property address and assessor’s parcel number.