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Four Crucial Steps to preventing clogged gutters

Performing periodic maintenance on your roof is a required task for every homeowner. Where you live is a great factor in determining how often you should check and clean the gutter.
 
If you are in an urban area where there are few or no trees at all, once a year will do. And the best time to do that is in autumn, right before the winter comes.
 
If you live in the suburbs or areas where trees are moderate, on the other hand, you should inspect your roof at least twice a year. Frequent checking and cleaning is highly required if you live in a heavily treed area. During the autumn, you must check it at least once or even twice each week.
Aside from doing occasional checkups and cleaning, how else do you ensure that your gutters won’t get clogged?
 
Cover the gutter.
The easiest way to protect your gutter from leaf buildups and collecting debris is to cover it. Nowadays, there are gutter covers that are designed for easy installation. If you are not the DIY type, you can always have them installed by your trusted dealers.
 
While there are no gutter coverings that will absolutely make your roof debris-free,  installing one will definitely help save you from having to frequently check and clean it.
 
Check for proper flow.
Apart from installing gutter guards, make sure water is flowing properly. To do this, you have to flush the gutter with water.
 
Check that the outlets are unobstructed. If you live in heavily wooded areas, it is advisable to install an outlet that is quite bigger or wider than the standard. This allows any kind of debris to flow through and prevents unspotted build up that often causes gutter blockage.
 
Make sure water is properly drained into the downspouts.
Make cleaning easy and convenient with removable downspouts or leaders. Blocked downspouts can be very challenging. For one, they are difficult to clean, particularly when you have a big house. With removable downspouts, you will be able to take them down safely on the ground, check them conveniently for obstructions, and clean them easily without ladders.
 
Fix gutter problems immediately.
The primary cause of clogged gutters is that they are often ignored until leaks or holes associated with them become a major problem. Gutter problems must be corrected as soon as you have spotted them. Patch holes even if they are tiny. If the hole is quite big, then it might require replacing. Install additional gutter support like spikes or ferrules if needed.
No matter how leak-proof the roof is or how debris-proofed the gutters are, you still need to climb up there and do regular inspections, most especially in the spring and autumn. While you may have the best gutter protection installed up there, home experts still recommend inspecting the gutters and clearing out all leaves and debris.
 
Republished courtesy of Jim’s Mowing

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Water Damage can be avoided

Water damage is one of the most common causes of strata insurance claims. Significant claims will have an impact on insurance premiums on renewal. The key is to minimise claims with a good maintenance/prevention regime in place both at the building and lot owner level.

The intent of strata insurance is to cover claims for water damage that is sudden and accidental. In many instances, strata insurance will cover the hidden perils of burst or leaking pipes when physical evidence of damage is first noticed and a claim is made.

Water problems may not be noticed until there is physical evidence like mould, dampness or leakages. At that stage of discovery, in our experience, the impact will be greater and, in many instances, will have spread to multiple apartments/ lots and common areas.

Flexible stainless steel hose pipes (flexi hoses) are popular because of their ability to bend into shape and their low cost (approximately $8 per unit). They are generally hidden beneath bathroom and kitchen sinks in strata complexes across australia, and have a life expectancy of 10 years.

Flexi hoses are responsible for many thousands of dollars in water claims when something goes wrong.

  • Flexi hoses were installed in the bathrooms and kitchens of a medium-sized apartment complex.

  • The flexi hose in one of the upper-level apartments split when most of the occupants were away from the premises, and water flooded the bathroom before spreading and meandering downwards through three floors of the complex prior to discovery.

  • The building repair bill was a staggering $80,000.

  • Five apartments had contents damage with the majority having no contents insurance.

  • A further inconvenience was that the apartments were uninhabitable and their occupants had to vacate their homes for approximately four weeks while repairs were undertaken. Alternative accommodation was approximately $350-$500 per unit per week.

  • Regular checks of the flexi hoses were not part of any maintenance programme which would have picked up the faulty flexi hose and allowed replacement at a cost of approximately $8 per unit.

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AGM via postal ballot, is this possible?


27 Aug 2021

Q. A Committee has advised that it would like to conduct their AGM via postal ballot, is this possible?
 
A. Section 69(2) of the OC Act provides that an AGM must be held at least once every 15 months.
 
Section 80(1) of the OC Act provides that an owner may participate in an AGM “… in person, by teleconferencing in accordance with the regulations, by proxy or in another manner provided for by the regulations.” Relevantly, it does not provide that participation may be by ballot.
 
On the other hand, section 80(2) of the OC Act does provide that the procedure at a general meeting is in the discretion of the OC. This may be interpreted to mean that a ballot would be acceptable. However, it is our view that this interpretation would be incorrect and not supported by VCAT. Rather, “procedure” is a reference to what takes place at the meeting itself, not as to whether it needs to be an actual meeting.
 
The OC Act clearly distinguishes between ballots and general meetings, including who may call them and how they are to be run. Given the clear distinction and the fact that participation at an AGM cannot be by Ballot pursuant to section 80(1) of the OC Act, it is our strong view that an AGM by ballot would not constitute a valid AGM.
 
VCAT has adopted the view that AGMs are inherently important, not just so that resolutions can be passed, but also so owners are afforded an opportunity to discuss matters of importance. A ballot does not allow this. 
 
Mark Lipshutz

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