Spring is officially here, but we are still awaiting the warmer weather that is certainly to come. We are looking forward to more activity in the complex as nice sunny days will get people out and walking in the complex. With this in mind, please be aware that we have a 10 mile per hour speed limit after you pass over the speed bump. Children, parents, pets and walkers will appreciate it.
If you are Spring cleaning your home, don’t forget to Spring clean your deck too. After removing unwanted or unused items, your deck can be cleaned with a mild detergent. If you have a wooden deck, you may even consider sanding and re-staining the wood. A clear coat of sealer can be used or if you want to paint your deck, it needs to be painted brown to keep consistency with all decks. A few owners have sanded and sealed their decks with a natural stain and they look brand new. The required Form to Re-stain your deck is included with the most recent copy of the Rules and Regs or a copy can be obtained at office. Scrub down your chairs, tables and other items that are on your decks to remove the winter grime. Putting pots of flowers on your deck adds color that can be enjoyed all summer long.
Maintenance has noticed that garden unit owners have been leaving shoes, boots and winter gear outside their doors in the hallways. With winter over, please store these items inside your unit as it makes vacuuming of the garden hallways easier if these items are removed.
At the Annual Meeting we informed you that we are looking at replacing our roofs within the next 5 or 6 years. As an update to that meeting, we have been able to put $2,000.00 a month into the Capital Reserve. This is above the projected amount planned and we hope to be able to continue for the remainder of the year. Additional information will be published concerning our need to raise the approximate $250,000 needed to replace the roofs and gutters. The Trustees have discussed an increase of $20.00 or $25.00 a month to the existing condo fees to reach the amount needed. This will be a Ballot Question for the 2015 Annual Meeting. This is your chance to become involved.
The sand in the parking lot will be cleaned up; it certainly is more than we are used to. When a date is set, a notice will be sent to all owners and residents to let them know their vehicles will need to be moved. We recommend that vehicles be moved away from the areas being cleaned because as the cleaning process is done, the sand and gravel can fly into the air and possibly damage your vehicle.
The Trustees have asked all dog owners to not walk or play with their dog on the two center lawns. Because there are now 16 dogs (large and small) in the complex the extra activity on these lawns could have a negative impact which would affect the overall appearance of our complex. Hillcrest Park wants to be a pet friendly complex but we must consider the impact that the pets have on our grounds. Our Rules and Regulations already restrict sports activities that could damage the lawns. To keep the lawns in the best condition possible, we have asked that the dogs be kept off them also. Dogs can be walked (on leash) anywhere else around the complex. We encourage pet owners who enjoy walking their dog to check out some of the pet friendly areas in town.
Last summer several residents had cats climb up their front screen doors damaging them. Please remember that all cats are to be indoor cats only.
Michelle is keeping all the laundry rooms cleaned and vacuumed, thank you Michelle! Two of the older hot water tanks in these laundry rooms have been replaced. If you use the laundry room in the basement of your building, remember that the next person who wants to use it expects to find it as clean as you did.
We have several projects planned for the summer months ahead. The sprinkler system will be started up, the lawns will have all the sand cleaned off them when the parking lot is cleaned and Bill will be replacing all the roof shingles that have fallen off over the winter months. Bill will also be working on the fence around the dam, replacing some of the damaged or decaying posts. In our continuing effort to replace the damaged walkways, four more will be done during the summer. When the Trustees do their Annual Walk Around, they will determine which 4 are most in need of replacement. The parking lot will be re-striped with a few changes in parking spaces. There is very limited space in regards to Units 24 through 30 and Units 43 through 52. Nothing can be done to get both of your cars in front of your unit but repainting the lines and numbers will be an improvement.
Very soon we should be able to put the benches and Adirondack chairs back on the patio that overlooks the pond. We have seen that may people are enjoying sitting on the patio on warm sunny days. We especially invite the Garden Unit owners to take advantage of the patio this summer. There is always wildlife activity on the pond. In the past two years we have seen many Canadian geese, Mallard Ducks, 3 Muskrats who sat on the ice munching away on plants from the pond during the winter. The Blue Heron is a regular visitor but you need to get up early in the morning to see him. He slowly walks along the pond edge from the cattails towards the dam. Last year several reports came in to the office that deer were on the opposite side of the pond standing in the shallow water.
As the snow has melted, we have noticed an alarming number of cigarette butts left on the grounds and parking lot. If you smoke, please dispose of your cigarette butts in a proper manner, do not drop them outside on the lawns, mulch or in the parking lot. Our concern is not only the appearance of the complex but safety as well. Last year two fires were started because people dropped their cigarette butts on dry mulch. The fire doesn’t start right away but smolders for a while. Luckily a resident noticed the smell of burning mulch and was able to get the fire out before it became large enough to cause any damage. In another instance, a cigarette butt was dropped off a back deck. Again after smoldering for a while, a fire did start and totally melted one of the black drain pipes that are used to divert water away from the building. This fire was noticed and reported by a resident. We are grateful that both of these fires did not cause more damage but they could have if they had not been noticed in time.
Included with this Newsletter is an Emergency Contact Information Page. The Trustees feel that it is important to have an emergency contact for everyone in the complex as emergencies have taken place within the complex and this gives us immediate contact to your family members if the situation requires it. We also need to be current with the number of pets in the complex and vehicle information. We are asking pet owners to include a current copy of the pet license and rabies shots. Due to the influx of new arrivals in the complex, we are evolving as well to the requests of residents. It was brought up at the past meeting that we should have copies of license and rabies shots for pets. We already request that pets be insured on a home owner’s policy. Residents would like to make sure pets are property licensed and have had their required shots. Please return it to the office as soon as possible. Your cooperation is greatly appreciated.
The HillcrestPark Trustees