Patrick McCarran

How is the Market? Should I still Buy? There has been a great deal of chatter about whether the sky falling and with it the housing market. What most alarmists do not discuss is that only a small percentage of loans in the USA are over $750,000 and over one third are owned outright. The factors that led to a crash in 2008 are not in paly today. The PRIMARY reason to own a home is UNCHANGED. The WHY you should own is relatively easy. Rents are high and with the strong resistance to building they will continue to rise and be unpredictable, when you own you know what your payment will be and it your home not the landlord to dictate rules. Mortgage interest will most likely remain the largest deduction for the middle class. Mortgage … [Read more...]

On the House

Springtime Sprinkler Tune-Up Although all signs might be pointing to the arrival of spring, the soil beneath the landscape is always the last to thaw.  Starting your sprinkler system while the ground is still frozen can result in damage to the pipes.  Use a shovel to make sure that the soil is frost-free 12 inches deep.  If it is still solid as a rock, then wait another week and test it again before starting the sprinkler system. Run a check of the irrigation controls and programs. This includes dusting away the cobwebs on the timer, making sure the date and time is correct, and that the settings are appropriate for your landscape’s watering needs. Replace the back-up battery in the timer/controller every 6 months, and keep a copy of … [Read more...]

Pick of the Vine

iRS Cleaners In 1855, after his maid accidentally overturned a kerosene lamp on his tablecloth, French dye-works owner, Jean Baptiste Jolly noticed that the tablecloth became cleaner. So, like many inventions, dry cleaning came about by accident and Jolly began to offer this new service, operating through his dye-works company, calling it “dry cleaning.” These days, you don’t have to have your clothes cleaned in kerosene or gasoline to get them fresh and clean. Just visit iRS Cleaners, using safe earth-friendly and allergen free products, it’s your one stop shop for all your dry-cleaning needs. Wanting to own their own piece of the American Dream, owner’s Joe and Kathy Grosser felt a dry-cleaning business was the perfect opportunity … [Read more...]

For Your Dental Health

Habits in Children Causing Orthodontic Problems Habits can be responsible for a number of orthodontic and orthopedic problems and should be addressed as soon as possible. When treated immediately most of the problems caused by habits can be reversed. However, when no intervention occurs a serious malocclusion is inevitable. A thumb or finger sucking habit can initially cause the upper front teeth to move forward and the lower front teeth to move back. Sometimes it can prevent the front teeth from erupting normally. If this is not treated as soon as possible it can lead to the narrowing of the upper jaw causing an anterior open bite and a smaller lower jaw. Lip biting and lip sucking of the lower lip can cause the upper teeth to tip … [Read more...]

Who’s Who In East County

Delta RC Hobbies Radio control enthusiasts and anyone searching for a new pastime should visit Delta RC Hobbies of Antioch. This hobby shop has 2,500 square feet of fully-stocked retail space with an enormous selection of kits, parts, and more. They also offer repair and assembly services, an indoor carpet racing facility, and outdoor dirt racing courses at the Contra Costa County Fairgrounds. Adding radio control vehicles to your repertoire of hobbies provides fun, excitement, and the opportunity to work with your hands to build something amazing. No doubt, we all need to get away from the TV, computer, and smartphone and do something constructive and creative. Delta RC offers electric and nitro, 1/8 and 1/10 Buggy and Truggy, … [Read more...]

Who’s Been Snooped?

Total Care For Total Health Well, if you are into chasing rainbows, this year’s February is just for you. However, you may need a small boat to get around the farmlands. With all the trees asleep for winter and rain filled furrows, it clearly has been a “wet” and “cold” winter. What a great time to do a little research on a local business that can get you ready for sunny days ahead. Most of us have either heard of Botox or have it scheduled on their yearly calendar. I would like to introduce you to a place where you can learn about all of the amazing procedures and services offered in the world of aesthetics. At Delta Aesthetics, Dr Ness, MD and his staff provide patients with top-quality cosmetic services. You can receive both … [Read more...]

Home & Lifestyle

One Week Of Healthy Meals, With Minimal Effort We all know that the week can get hectic, with work and whatever life can throw at you. In between the chaos is it important to provide a healthy yet hearty meal for your family. American household spend $70,000 on takeout annually. With such a high number, saving money is also a dire reason that cooking at home is healthy as well as frugal. The key to a week of healthy meals is choosing two days to cook and prep your food for break, lunch, or dinner. Whether it is all three meals or one, the choice is up to you. Let’s begin with the first meal of the day. Breakfast. The meal that gets you energized and ready for the day ahead. Though this meal is the most important of the day, it is … [Read more...]

Ferber Law

NEW PROTECTIONS FOR VICTIMS OF SEXUAL HARASSMENT California has passed a myriad of new laws that become effective January 1, 2019 that expand employer liability for sexual harassment. Of particular importance is SB 1343 which requires employers with 5 or more employees, including temporary and/or seasonal employees, to provide at least two hours of sexual harassment training to all supervisory employees, and at least one hour to all non-supervisory employees, every two years. Additionally, SB 820 adds Section 1001 to the California Code of Civil Procedure which now prohibits any settlement agreement entered into on or after January 1, 2019 from containing language preventing disclosure of factual information related to claims of sexual … [Read more...]

Law Offices of Joan Grimes

Why You Need a Revocable Living Trust Over the years, I have written a lot of articles for the Monthly Grapevine. My goal in writing these articles has been to cover more complex estate planning issues. However, I realize some of you may be new to my articles. I often meet with clients who admit they were too embarrassed to ask: “what is a revocable living trust and why do I need one?” And my favorite question is: “why did my parents not have a trust?” These are excellent questions! First, your parents may not have had a trust, but rather had a simple Will. Several decades ago, this was fine! After their passing, their Will was probated and the assets were distributed to their beneficiaries. However, today the process of … [Read more...]

From the Desk of the CEO

Return on Ad Spending Your first step will be determining exactly what ROI (return on investment) means to you. Many people use the term but often confuse the meanings. If you’re looking at trying to calculate how much your spending in print advertising translates into sales, you’re technically looking at Return on Ad Spending (ROAS), but the terms are similar enough that many people just use them interchangeably. Other things to consider are, again, to determine what qualifies as “success” - a lead, a conversion, increased advertising awareness, increased brand awareness, etc. For simplicity’s sake, assuming that you’re looking at increased store traffic as your measure of success, here are some things you can do to calculate your … [Read more...]