By Kathleen Jorgensen
November 22, 2014 (Borrego Springs) -- Soroptimist International of Borrego Springs will hold its Holiday Home Tour on Saturday, December 6 from 4:30 to 8:30 p.m. You will tour five lovely homes in the Borrego Valley, each uniquely adorned for the holidays. From "ultra-modern" to "old school", each home will reflect the distinct decorating style of the homeowner.
November 18, 2014 (Lakeside)--The Lakeside Historical Society will be hosting their annual HOLIDAY HOME TOUR on Saturday, December 6 from 10 a,m to 2 p.m. Tickets are $15 and can be purchased from the History Center, 9906 Maine Avenue (corner of Parkside) from 10am until 2pm Tuesday through Saturday. They can also be purchased at the homes on the self guided tour.
DREAMING OF HOME OWNERSHIP? HABITAT FOR HUMANITY TO BUILD 6 HOMES IN EL CAJON: LEARN HOW TO APPLY AT NOV. 18 MEETING
November 15, 2014 (El Cajon) - The City of El Cajon is providing financial assistance to help San Diego Habitat for Humanity build six new homes in El Cajon.
East County News Service
Drought got you down? Need garden tips, conservation insights and ideas for drought-resistant plants to make your fall landscape more beautiful with less water?
Get help at Ask the Experts, an event set for Saturday, November 15 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Water Conservation Garden at Cuyamaca College in El Cajon. Presentations and exhibits include a home compost workshop, toss the turf class, life after lawns, horticultural displays, how to hire a landscape contractor and save money, ask the designers, personalized landscape design consultations, free garden tours, and shopping for water-saving plants.
Photo: This house rocks! Boulder in center of Jamul home absorbs heat by day and gives off warmth by night.
East County News Service
November 6, 2014 (San Diego’s East County)—The San Diego Green Building Council will hold its Green Homes Tour this Sunday, November 9th from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. The tour features innovative, sustainably designed homes throughout San Diego County. There is a $5 fee for non-members. Several East County homes are on the tour.
October 13, 2014 – Today, the California Department of Veterans Affairs (CalVet) launches a new affordble home ownership program, Residential Enriched Neighborhoods (REN), for Veterans and their families through a partnership with Homes for Families. This important new program offers manageable loan payments and enrichment services, with permanent home ownership for California’s Veterans.
September 28, 2014 (San Diego) -- With San Diego knee-deep in a drought, it might be a good idea to ditch that thirsty turf grass in favor of a vibrant, easy-care garden that's also a haven for butterflies and other native species. San Diego County News Service met up with a San Diego Master Gardener who did just that. Click the video to check out her beautiful yard.
East County News Service
September 22, 2014 (San Diego)--Property values are going up as the economy continues to improve. That means property taxes are going up, too.
Article courtesy of Bonnie Plants
October 5, 2014 (San Diego's East County)--Warm weather, continued care and robust plants have yielded a bounty of beautiful, fresh vegetables – and personal satisfaction – from your garden this season. As the weather cools and fall approaches, it is not time to hang up your hat, gloves and trowel for the year. Autumn provides optimum weather and ample opportunity to keep growing and harvesting delicious, healthy produce well into the season.
By Bob Hunt
Originally published in Daniel Guefen’s Real Estate Update for MG Realty/MG Mortgage www.DanielGuefen.com
August 21, 2014 (San Diego’s East County)--Many times, in the course of reviewing transaction files, I will read that an agent has recommended to the buyer that he or she should have the home inspected by a licensed home inspector. While one has to appreciate the earnestness of such advice, it is nonetheless at least a trifle amusing. This is because there is no licensing of home inspectors here in California. California is one of 21 states that do not regulate home inspection services via some sort of licensing mechanism.
By Miriam Raftery
July 10, 2014 (San Diego’s East County)--Are the roses and other garden plants you’ve purchased recently killing off bees and butterflies?
June 30, 2014 (San Diego) -- Do you disagree with your property tax assessment for the 2014-2015 year? San Diego County residents and business owners who do may file an application to appeal their assessment from July 2 through Dec. 1, according to Clerk of the County Assessment Appeals Boards Thomas J. Pastuszka.
JAMES HUBBELL'S ANNUAL FATHER'S DAY OPEN HOUSE TO INCLUDE GRAND OPENING OF NEW ILAN-LAEL FOUNDATION BUILDING
Tour to unveil the first brand new building on Hubbell Hill in 10 years
May 26, 2014 (Julian)--Iconic San Diego artist, global humanitarian and cultural leader, James Hubbell, will once again invite the public to tour his family’s magical and historically-designated compound in Julian, Calif. for the annual Father’s Day Open House on Sunday, June 15, 2014. The tour will also unveil the brand new ninth building on the compound – the Ilan-Lael Foundation building, which has been under construction since early 2013. The archive and gallery spaces of the new building will be open for the first time ever, which will showcase some of Hubbell’s most recent work.
AFRICAN GARDEN, AIRPLANE MODELS AND LOTS OF COLOR AT 19TH ANNUAL FRIENDS OF EAST COUNTY'S GARDEN TOUR
By Janis Russell
April 29, 2014 (San Diego’s East County)-- Despite windy weather and some rain, the 19th annual garden tour presented by Friends of East County Arts on April 26 was still held, providing visitors with an array of colorful and fascinating gardens to enjoy.
This garden and others will be on view at the Sage & Songbirds Garden Tour May 2-4 in Alpine
Story by Maureen Austin, CHIRP
Photos by Mendi Wyatt, CHIRP
April 15, 2014 (Alpine) - Laughingly labeled as a “plant hoarder” by a friend, Pete Swoboda prefers the title “plant collector.” He says he never met a plant he didn’t like, and although he has hundreds of different plants growing in his near-acre garden, he purchased less than 20 percent of them. The balance were gifts or starts he propagated from cuttings.
April 6, 2014 (San Diego)--The rains have gone and temperatures are expected to start rising again. And that means swimming pool season can’t be far off!
March 30, 2014 (San Diego's East County)--Friends of East County Arts, Inc. presents its 19th Annual Garden Tour on Saturday, April 26 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Six spectacular gardens will offer an amazing variety of settings and each garden is lovingly planned and cared for by its owner. Included in this year’s tour are:
By Ryan Harrison
Photo by harmonicagoldfish via Flickr
March 22, 2014 (San Diego's East County) - Preparing your swimming pool for the upcoming summer season means more just than taking off the cover and refilling it. After a long winter, your pool may be green and full of gunk and debris. More than 53,000 in-ground pools and 171,000 above-ground pools were sold in 2012, according to The Association of Pool and Spa Professionals. Before opening your backyard for swimming, take the time to thoroughly clean and make upgrades to your existing pool for both the health of the swimmers and the pool.
March 20, 2014 (San Diego)--California is in the midst of a drought emergency, and there’s no relief in sight as our unseasonably warm winter continues. Gov. Jerry Brown is asking all residents to cut water use by 20 percent — something that may be easier than you think.
Photo credit: Tom Lemon
Safety tips from the nonprofit FLASH
March 1, 2014 (San Diego)--With much needed rain expected over the next few days, residents should take precautions to protect their home and family from the possibility of flooding. Eighteen to 24 inches of moving water can wash an SUV off of the road. In fact, according to the National Weather Service, more than half of all flood-related deaths are people driving through flooded roads. The nonprofit Federal Alliance for Safe Homes (FLASH) reminds residents to “Turn Around, Don’t Drown!” and offers the following safety tips to protect your home from costly flood damage.
February 13, 2014 (San Diego's East County) - The Pacific Southwest Association of Realtors, a trade group for San Diego-area realtors who serve East County and South County communities, will host a free class for realtors on the process of selling homes offered by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) from 1:30 to 3 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 27, at the PSAR East County Service Center, 1150 Broadway, El Cajon.
February 5, 2014 (San Diego's East County) - The Pacific Southwest Association of REALTORS® (PSAR), a 2,000-member trade group for San Diego area realtors, hosted El Cajon Mayor Bill Wells at a recent PSAR brown-bag lunchtime conversation presented by PSAR’s Government Affairs Committee. Wells, a city councilman in El Cajon since 2008 and mayor pro tem since December 2012, was appointed mayor in November 2013, succeeding Mark Lewis who served for 14 years.
By E. Vernon Small
Mortgage Insurance is required on conventional and FHA loans if the loan to value of the loan amount exceeds 80% of the value of the home. It is an insurance policy that covers the lender in case of default or loss when the loan balance exceeds the property value.
Unfortunately, most homeowners will have to refinance their current loan to remove mortgage insurance. Below is a guide that simplifies the most common options.
December 23, 2013 (Santee) – As part of its commitment to the communities in which it builds, Pardee Homes announced on December 18 a $5,000 contribution to the Santee Santas Foundation to purchase food, toys and flowers for local families and seniors this holiday season. The grant, made possible through Pardee’s parent company, Weyerhaeuser, will help support the Santee Santas’ signature effort, an annual holiday children's toy and food program focused on bringing the holiday spirit to about 300 families in need.
November 27, 2013 (San Diego) – The holiday season isn't all twinkling lights and home-baked pies. Did you know that household hazards and preventable damages peak significantly in the holiday season? For example, on average, there are three times more turkey fryer claims during the holiday season than any other time of the year. The median cost for turkey fryer-related claims is almost $29,000.
Many holiday traditions — including decorating trees, stringing electric lights, lighting candles and preparing elaborate meals — can pose risks if not handled properly.
November 14, 2013 (Alpine) – For the past 8 years the Alpine Woman’s Club has sponsored “Christmas in Alpine” Home Tour. However, as of October, the group has only one house for this year’s tour.
“This fundraiser helps to provide scholarships that we give away each year. Since 1950 the Alpine Woman's Club has given away more than $95,000 to exceptional Alpine graduating seniors,” said Carlette Anderson, president of the Alpine Woman’s Club. “We are reaching out to the community and looking for Alpine residents who love to decorate for the holidays and would enjoy sharing their decorating skills with others. The event is scheduled for Saturday Dec 14th from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. All we ask of you is to decorate your home. We provide insurance, booties to wear over your shoes (if you want them) and docents who are present in your decorated rooms.”
November 13, 2013 (La Mesa) – La Mesa City Council Vice Mayor Kristine Alessio will meet with members of the Pacific Southwest Association of REALTORS® (PSAR) starting at noon today at the PSAR East County Service Center, 1150 Broadway, El Cajon. Topics will include an update on new projects in La Mesa, new development opportunities in La Mesa, the city’s homebuyer assistance program and a review of the city’s boards and commissions.
Admission is free. Attendees are encouraged to bring their own lunch. For more information and to RSVP, call PSAR at (619) 579-0333 or visit www.psar.org. PSAR, a trade group for San Diego-area realtors, offers educational training, advocacy and other services and resources to its realtor members.
Photo by Erik Hauenstein
November 6, 2013 (San Diego) – An “Energy Demonstration House” featured on the San Diego Sustainability Tour in September has generated 49.9% in energy savings for the homeowners. This ‘Clark Kent’ of households was transformed into an energy super-hero to showcase the simply things homeowners can do to slash energy costs and live more comfortably and sustainably – and how to use it using other people’s money.
The Society will provide trolleys for transport among the houses or ticketed guests may travel to the homes on their own. (This tour is not ADA accessible).
ENVRIONMENTALISTS WEIGH CHALLENGE AFTER SAN DIEGO CITY COUNCIL APROVES CASTLEROCK PROJECT AND TRANSFER OF LAND TO SANTEE
By Nadin Abbott
September 17, 2013 (San Diego)—The San Diego City Council voted 7-0 to approve the controversial Castlerock housing project on the border of Santee and San Diego. The resolution proposed by Council Member Scott Sherman (District 7) and Council Member David Alvarez (District 8) reads in part, “approve the Staff’s recommendation (Annexation being the preferred scenario).”
It is clear that San Diego would prefer the project to go to Santee. One key reason is fire response, which San Diego Fire Department cannot do in a timely manner, due to the location of the nearest fire stations and how busy Santee roads can be at rush hour. With annexation, Santee will have jurisdiction to dispatch fire engines and other emergency services.