Livingston Reporting - page 3

Whole-Home Generators: Your Ultimate Guide to Power Security

Image of a Generac standby generator.

In an age where electricity powers nearly every aspect of our lives, from keeping our homes comfortable to enabling our work and entertainment, the importance of a reliable power source cannot be overstated. Whole-home generators, also known as standby or automatic generators, have become a cornerstone for ensuring that power interruptions do not disrupt our daily activities. As experts in the field, we at State Electric Company are dedicated to helping you understand your options in automatic generators and the essential practices for their upkeep.

Types of Automatic Generators

Automatic generators come in various sizes and energy types to suit different needs. They are designed to kick in automatically within seconds of a power outage, ensuring a seamless transition and uninterrupted power supply. Below, we list the main styles:

  • Natural Gas Generators: These generators are connected to your home’s natural gas supply, offering a convenient and long-term fuel solution. They’re ideal for areas with a reliable natural gas infrastructure, providing a clean and efficient power source.
  • Liquid Propane Generators: For homes in areas where natural gas is not available, liquid propane offers an alternative. Stored in tanks on your property, liquid propane can efficiently fuel your standby generator, although it requires monitoring to ensure fuel levels remain adequate.
  • Diesel Generators: Known for their durability and longevity, diesel generators are an option for larger homes or properties that require significant power. They operate on diesel fuel, which is stored in tanks and can be more cost-effective depending on your region and situation.
  • Dual-Fuel Generators: These generators can run on more than one type of fuel, typically natural gas or propane, offering flexibility in fuel sourcing and potentially more reliability in areas where fuel supply can be uncertain.
  • Solar-Powered Generators: These systems harness sunlight to generate electricity, offering an eco-friendly alternative to fossil fuels. They’re particularly appealing in regions with abundant sunlight, providing clean energy that reduces carbon footprint. Solar generators can be paired with solar panels installed on your property, creating an autonomous system that can power essential appliances and lights during an outage.
  • Battery Storage Systems: Modern battery systems store electricity from the grid or solar panels during power outages. They’re silent, require minimal maintenance, and can be programmed to optimize energy usage. Systems like the Tesla Powerwall have popularized home battery storage, offering a reliable and sustainable power backup solution that can be monitored and controlled via smartphone apps.

The Importance of Annual Inspections and Maintenance of Generators

While whole-home generators are built to be reliable, regular inspections and maintenance are crucial to ensure they remain in top working order.  Regardless of the type of generator or backup power system you have, annual maintenance is critical. Here’s why:  

  • Reliability When You Need It Most: The primary role of a whole-home generator is to be ready at a moment’s notice. Annual maintenance ensures that when the power goes out, your generator will start without a hitch.
  • Longevity of Your Investment: Regular maintenance extends the life of your generator, ensuring it serves your home for many years. This involves checking components like the battery, fuel lines, and connections to prevent any unexpected failures.
  • Efficiency and Safety: A well-maintained generator runs more efficiently and is safer. During routine inspections, technicians can identify and rectify potential hazards, such as leaks or electrical issues.
  • Sustainability and Performance: For solar-powered generators and battery systems, maintenance includes checking the health of solar panels, battery capacity, and ensuring software is up-to-date for optimal performance.
  • Peace of Mind: Knowing that your generator has been professionally inspected and maintained provides peace of mind, especially during seasons when power outages are more likely.

Whole-home generators are a significant investment in your home’s comfort and safety. Choosing the right type of automatic generator and committing to annual maintenance are key steps in ensuring that your home remains powered during outages. At State Electric Company, we specialize in the installation, repair, and maintenance of a wide range of whole-home generators. Our team of experts is here to help you select the best generator for your needs and ensure it remains in optimal condition year after year. For more information or to schedule a consultation, contact us today.

State Electric Company is Fully Insured, Licensed, and Bonded. Contact us today to schedule your installation or inspection.

State Electric Company is a leader in the electrification of the nation. Our highly educated and experienced team of professionals uses industry-leading software technology and has partnered with manufacturers to deliver affordable solutions for all your electrical needs. State Electric Co. is also an exclusive distributor of Enel X JuiceBox EV chargers for residential and commercial use. We are fully licensed, insured, and bonded to install charging stations for homes, offices, hotels, and more. With our extensive knowledge of renewable energy, our team provides customers – large or small – with efficient electrical solutions. Contact us today to learn how we can safely and affordably meet your energy needs. 

Written by the digital marketing team at Creative Programs & Systems: www.cpsmi.com

Preparing for Pest Season: Your Guide to a Pest-Free Summer in Colorado and Wyoming

Image of a pest control professional spraying pesticide.

Most people look forward to spring, with warm days, green grass, and budding flowers. However, it’s also the beginning of general pest and insect season, bringing ants, spiders, stinging insects, and wasps closer to our homes. With proactive measures and expert insights, you can enjoy the warmer months in peace, without unwelcome guests. Here’s your guide to preparing for the upcoming pest season.

Understanding the Threat

Around April, we see a significant increase in pest activity. The warmer temperatures are perfect for ants to start their forays into homes in search of food. Spiders come out of hiding to prey on these insects, often making their way into our living spaces. Stinging insects like wasps and other flying nuisances become more active, building nests that can pose risks to your family and pets.

Early Prevention is Key

  • Seal Entry Points: Begin with a thorough inspection of your home. Seal cracks and crevices around windows, doors, and the foundation to block entry points for pests.
  • Eliminate Standing Water: Stagnant water is a breeding ground for many insects. Ensure gutters are clean and downspouts are directing water away from your home. Repair leaky faucets and ensure your yard drains properly to discourage pests.
  • Keep Your Yard Tidy: Overgrown vegetation can provide shelter and breeding sites for pests. Keep your lawn trimmed and remove debris where insects could nest.
  • Store Food and Waste Properly: Ensure food is stored in sealed containers and keep your kitchen clean. Regularly dispose of garbage in sealed receptacles to avoid attracting ants and other pests.

Professional Pest Control Services

While DIY measures are a good start, professional pest control services such as Front Range Pest offer the expertise and resources needed to protect your home. We provide:

  • Customized Treatment Plans: Tailored strategies that address your area’s specific pests and your home’s unique vulnerabilities.
  • Preventative Treatments: Regularly scheduled treatments throughout the season can prevent infestations before they start.
  • Peace of Mind: Knowing that your home is protected against pests allows you to enjoy your summer without worry.

Stay Vigilant

Regularly inspect your home for signs of pests. Catching an issue early can make a significant difference in the ease and cost of treatment. Look for signs like ant trails, spider webs, or wasp nests forming under eaves.

As we embrace the warmer months in Colorado and Wyoming, don’t let pests dampen your spirits. By taking early preventative measures and contacting Front Range Pest for unruly pest situations, you can protect your home and enjoy a pest-free summer. Remember, the key to effective pest management is not just to react but to prepare. So, let’s get ready for the season and ensure our homes and businesses remain a sanctuary setting for us, not for pests.

For a prompt inspection of your pest problem, contact us for a reliable, effective solution! 

Front Range Pest is your trusted, family-owned pest and wildlife control company serving central Colorado and southern Wyoming. Our certified technicians have the expertise and credentials to ensure effective pest management for your home or business. As your all-in-one insect and wildlife specialists, we offer peace of mind by identifying wildlife entry points, removing nuisance pests, sealing access areas, performing cleanup, and making essential repairs. Schedule an inspection with us today.

Written by the digital marketing team at Creative Programs & Systems: www.cpsmi.com

How the SBA 504 Loan Program Can Benefit Your Business

Image of a gold piggy bank with stacks of money laid aside it.

Owning commercial property can be a pivotal step for small business owners, offering stability and the potential for significant growth. However, navigating the maze of commercial real estate financing can be daunting. This is where the Small Business Administration’s (SBA) 504 loan program comes into play, offering a lifeline to entrepreneurs aiming to purchase or refinance commercial properties. Here’s a comprehensive guide to understanding how the SBA 504 loan program works and the benefits it can bring to your business.

What is an SBA 504 Loan?

The SBA 504 loan program is designed to aid small businesses in acquiring or improving commercial real estate and other fixed assets. The SBA collaborates with Certified Development Companies (CDCs) and lenders through this program to provide small business owners with long-term, fixed-rate financing. This is mainly aimed at promoting economic growth within the community.

How Does an SBA 504 Loan Work?

An SBA 504 loan is typically structured with three parties: the borrower, a bank or a private sector lender, and a CDC. The breakdown of financing is as follows:

  • 50% from the bank/lender: This portion of the loan comes directly from a bank or another lending institution and holds a first lien on the asset. The loan must be at least 50% of the total project cost.
  • Up to 40% from the CDC: Financed through a 100% SBA-guaranteed debenture, this portion holds a second lien position and can cover up to 40% of the total project cost, with a cap of $5 million ($5.5 million for manufacturing projects or projects that meet certain energy efficiency goals).
  • 10% equity from the borrower: The business owner is required to contribute at least 10% of the project’s cost. This requirement ensures that the borrower is significantly invested in the project’s success.

Benefits of the SBA 504 Loan

1. Low Down Payment: The typical 10% down payment is significantly lower than what is required for traditional commercial loans, making it more accessible for small businesses.

2. Fixed Interest Rates: The 504 loan offers fixed interest rates on the CDC portion, providing businesses with predictable monthly payments and protection from future interest rate increases.

3. Long-Term Financing: Loan terms can extend up to 20 or 25 years for real estate and ten years for equipment, providing businesses with long-term stability and lower monthly payments.

4. Ownership Equity: By investing in commercial property, businesses can build equity over time, which can be beneficial for future financing needs or business expansion.

Eligibility and Use of an SBA 504 Loan

To qualify for an SBA 504 loan, a business must operate for profit in the United States, have a tangible net worth of less than $15 million, and have an average net income of less than $5 million after federal income taxes for the two years preceding the application. The financing obtained through this program can be used for:

  • Purchasing land and buildings
  • Constructing new buildings or renovating existing ones
  • Buying machinery and equipment with a service life of at least ten years
  • Refinancing debt in connection with an expansion of the business through new or renovated facilities or equipment

How to Apply for an SBA 504 Loan

Applying for an SBA 504 loan involves working with a CDC and a participating lender, such as EB Mortgage. The first step is to contact a CDC in your area, which will guide you through the application process, including the initial paperwork and gathering the necessary financial statements.

For small business owners looking to purchase or refinance commercial properties, the SBA 504 loan offers a compelling financing solution. With its low down payment requirement, fixed interest rates, and long-term financing, the 504 loan can provide the stability and resources needed to take your business to the next level. Consulting with a knowledgeable mortgage lender or broker who specializes in SBA loans can provide you with personalized guidance and help streamline the application process.

Interested in obtaining a SBA 504 Loan? Contact EB Mortgage for wholesale mortgage solutions.  

EB Mortgage is a locally owned mortgage company with experts in new home purchase, refinancing, and commercial loans. Our wholesale rates can’t be beaten. We offer more products, more options, and more solutions. Our “3C” Process is simple: complete our pre-approval request, consider options based on your requirements, and choose the offer that suits your needs best. Call us or e-mail us today! 

Written by the digital marketing team at Creative Programs & Systems: www.cpsmi.com

Guarding Your Business: Strategies to Combat Today’s Cybersecurity Threats

Image of a blue cybersecurity shield emblem.

In the digital age, cybersecurity has emerged as a critical concern for businesses of all sizes. Small to medium-sized businesses (SMBs), in particular, often find themselves in the crosshairs of cybercriminals due to perceived vulnerabilities in their security systems. However, with the right strategies and awareness, SMBs can effectively protect themselves from the myriad of cybersecurity threats lurking online. This article explores the critical cybersecurity threats that businesses face today and offers practical advice on safeguarding against them.

The Most Common Cybersecurity Threats

1. Phishing Attacks: One of the most prevalent threats, phishing scams, involves fraudulent attempts to obtain sensitive information by disguising it as a trustworthy entity in an electronic communication. These attacks often lead to unauthorized access to critical business data.

2. Ransomware: This type of malware blocks access to a computer system until a ransom is paid. For businesses, this can mean significant downtime and loss of critical data.

3. Insider Threats: Sometimes, the threat comes from within, whether intentionally by disgruntled employees or unintentionally through negligent use of IT resources.

4. DDoS Attacks: Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks overwhelm a system’s resources, rendering it inoperable and disrupting business operations.

Practical Tips to Enhance Your Cybersecurity

Implement Strong Password Policies: Encourage the use of complex passwords and the regular updating of passwords across your organization. Consider implementing multi-factor authentication (MFA) for an added layer of security.

Regularly Update and Patch Systems: Ensure that all software and operating systems are updated with the latest security patches. Cybercriminals often exploit vulnerabilities in outdated software to gain unauthorized access to systems.

Educate Your Employees: Human error is one of the leading causes of cybersecurity breaches. Regular training sessions can help employees recognize and avoid common cyber threats, such as phishing and social engineering attacks.

Backup Your Data: Regular backups of critical data can be a lifeline in the event of a cybersecurity incident. Ensure that backups are stored securely and are easily retrievable when necessary.

Invest in Security Software: Utilize reputable antivirus and anti-malware solutions to provide real-time protection against threats. Firewalls should also be used to control incoming and outgoing network traffic based on an applied rule set.

Develop a Response Plan: Having a cybersecurity incident response plan can significantly mitigate the damage of a breach. Ensure that your plan includes steps for containment, eradication, and recovery, as well as communication strategies for internal and external stakeholders.

Seek Professional Computer Help: Perhaps the most crucial advice for SMBs is to seek professional help when it comes to cybersecurity. Partnering with IT security professionals such as CPS can provide access to expert advice, advanced security tools, and ongoing support to protect your business from cyber threats. Our technicians can conduct regular security assessments, implement robust cybersecurity frameworks, respond to incidents, and more.

Cybersecurity is not a one-time effort but an ongoing process that requires vigilance and adaptation to new threats. For SMBs, the challenge of cybersecurity can seem daunting, but by taking proactive steps and seeking professional IT assistance, it’s possible to create a secure digital environment for your business. Protecting your company from cyber threats not only safeguards your data and financial assets but also preserves the trust and confidence of your customers.

Need help filling in the gaps in your cybersecurity? Our dedicated team can help! Contact us today for a free consultation.

Founded in 1994, Creative Programs and Systems delivers professional results for all your computer needs. We design, create, and code various custom software programs and websites. Additionally, we offer superior digital marketing services, including enhanced Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and paid advertising. We also repair and support commercial computer infrastructure, build custom systems and servers, and provide secure data backups. Need assistance or want to learn more? Call (810)224-5252 or email info@cpsmi.com us!

Written by the digital marketing team at Creative Programs & Systems: www.cpsmi.com

Enhancing Your Outdoor Living Space with a Luxury In-Ground Pool Oasis

Creating the ultimate outdoor living space is about blending functionality with personalized style, especially when it involves an in-ground pool. As summer approaches, the allure of sunny days and warm nights invites the opportunity to transform your pool area into a luxurious retreat. For homeowners looking to elevate their outdoor entertainment, incorporating features such as outdoor kitchens, fire pits, lighting, and lounge areas can turn a simple swimming pool into the centerpiece of summer entertaining. Here’s how to enhance your pool area for the upcoming summer season:

1. Integrate an Outdoor Kitchen

An outdoor kitchen is a quintessential addition to any pool area, offering the perfect blend of convenience and ambiance for hosting summer barbecues and gatherings. Consider equipping your outdoor kitchen with a built-in grill, refrigerator, and sink to keep everything you need within reach. Adding bar seating can also create a social hub, allowing guests to interact with the cook without crowding the cooking space.

2. Install a Cozy Fire Pit

A fire pit adds warmth and a captivating glow, extending the usability of your outdoor space into the cooler evenings. It serves as a focal point where guests can gather, share stories, and enjoy the serene ambiance. Whether you opt for a traditional wood-burning pit or a modern gas-powered feature, a fire pit enhances the aesthetic appeal and functionality of your pool area.

3. Illuminate with Strategic Lighting

Proper lighting can transform your pool area into an enchanting nighttime oasis. LED pool lights, pathway lighting, and accent lights for landscaping can elevate the beauty of your outdoor space while ensuring safety for evening gatherings. Consider dimmable options to adjust the ambiance as needed, and use solar-powered lights to add illumination without increasing your energy bill.

4. Design Comfortable Lounge Areas

Comfort is key when it comes to creating an inviting outdoor living space. Invest in high-quality, weather-resistant furniture to provide ample seating options around the pool. Incorporate a mix of lounge chairs, outdoor sofas, and shaded areas to offer a variety of relaxation spots. Adding outdoor rugs, cushions, and throws can also enhance comfort and inject personal style into your pool area.

5. Incorporate Landscaping and Decor

The right landscaping can frame your pool area and provide privacy, creating a secluded paradise. Consider planting native shrubs, trees, and flowers to add color and texture. For decor, integrate outdoor art, water features, or a koi pond to introduce unique elements that reflect your personal taste.

6. Plan for Entertainment

Equip your outdoor living space with amenities that cater to entertainment. A sound system for music, a projector for outdoor movie nights, and recreational areas for games can turn your pool area into the ultimate summer destination for friends and family.

7. Ensure Privacy and Safety

While enhancing your outdoor living space, don’t forget the importance of privacy and safety. Fencing, privacy screens, and pool covers can provide security for your pool area while also adding to its aesthetic appeal.

Transforming your pool area into an inviting outdoor living space requires thoughtful planning and creativity. By integrating these features, you can create a versatile and stylish outdoor oasis that’s perfect for summer entertaining. Remember to tailor each element to your lifestyle and preferences, ensuring that your outdoor space becomes a cherished extension of your home.

Renovating your inground pool? Contact the experts at Pound Pool Plastering today!

Pound Pool Plastering services residential and commercial pools in applying a wide variety of pool plaster finishes and complete renovations. We offer Diamond Brite, Sunstone, Hydrazzo, and Marcite – and a great selection of tile choices and coping stones. Owner Dale Pound personally oversees each pool project to ensure the highest quality is delivered. Call or email us for a free estimate.

Written by the digital marketing team at Creative Programs & Systems: www.cpsmi.com

$5.8 Billion in Federal Funding to Clean the Nation’s Drinking Water Infrastructure

Image of a kitchen sink faucet with water dripping into a clear drinking glass.

The Biden administration recently unveiled a significant investment of $5.8 billion to rejuvenate the United States’ deteriorating drinking water infrastructure, a move aimed at mitigating the health risks faced by millions of Americans. This financial boost is designated for every state and territory, earmarked for critical water infrastructure improvements, including efforts to eliminate hazardous lead pipes. Vice President Kamala Harris, along with Michael Regan, administrator of the US Environmental Protection Agency, underscored the initiative’s goal during an event in Pittsburgh, emphasizing the administration’s commitment to ensuring access to safe drinking water nationwide.

This funding allocation stems from bipartisan legislation passed in 2021, which allocated a total of $50 billion towards water infrastructure enhancements. The initiative targets a range of projects, such as those in Pittsburgh focused on lead pipe removal, aimed at securing safer drinking water systems and more reliable wastewater infrastructures across the country. Vice President Harris highlighted the endeavor’s urgency in addressing lead contamination, asserting that clean water is a fundamental right for all Americans, regardless of their financial standing or geographical location.

Despite the ambitious federal push, the challenge of overhauling the nation’s water infrastructure is daunting. The American Society of Civil Engineers’ recent assessments reveal a system in distress, with drinking water infrastructure receiving a C- rating and wastewater management a D+. The investments are a response to the extensive need for upgrades, exemplified by the crisis in Flint, Michigan, where lead-contaminated water exposed the dangers of inadequate water system maintenance. The allocation includes significant funds for replacing lead service lines, though experts warn that the costs and logistical challenges of such replacements are substantial, with some estimates running as high as $25,000 per service line.

Moreover, the initiative extends beyond lead issues, addressing the pervasive contamination of drinking water with PFAS chemicals, known for their enduring presence in the environment and potential health risks. Almost half of the U.S. tap water is believed to be contaminated with these substances. While the federal funding represents a critical step forward, experts argue that it constitutes just a fraction of the investment required to fully upgrade the nation’s water infrastructure. The need for continued and increased federal involvement and investment is clear, as the endeavor to provide clean, safe water for all Americans continues to face significant challenges and demands.

Concerned about your drinking water? Contact Reynolds Water Conditioning to schedule testing, maintenance or repair of water systems, and more. Our top priority is ensuring that you have access to good, safe drinking water.

Reynolds Water Conditioning was established in 1931 and is Michigan’s oldest water conditioning treatment company. Still owned and operated by the Reynolds family, we take pride in providing the highest quality products at a cost-effective price. If your tap water lacks the quality you deserve, contact us today at 800-572-9575.

Written by the digital marketing team at Creative Programs & Systems: www.cpsmi.com

Jump into GE Stocks Amid Countdown to GE Aerospace?

General Electric (GE) is on the verge of a major transformation as it pivots towards focusing exclusively on aerospace and defense, shedding its previous identity as a diversified conglomerate. This transition is underscored by the impending launch of GE Aerospace as an independent company on April 2, which will retain the original GE stock ticker. Concurrently, GE Vernova, which encompasses the company’s gas power and wind energy business, will also debut, trading under the ticker GEV. This move follows the earlier spinoff of GE HealthCare Technologies in January, part of GE’s announced plan in 2021 to split into three independent, publicly traded companies focusing on aviation, healthcare, and energy, marking a strategic departure from its past as an iconic American industrial conglomerate.

GE stock has seen considerable growth, reaching multi-year highs and outperforming the market with a notable 91% increase over the past year and a 38% rise year to date. The stock has a strong IBD Composite Rating of 95 out of 99, reflecting its robust performance and earnings growth, particularly driven by its aerospace division. Despite the overall positive momentum, GE faces challenges in the aviation sector, which is known for its cyclical nature, along with broader global economic uncertainties and geopolitical risks that could impact business.

As for the aerospace division, often referred to as GE’s “crown jewel,” it manufactures jet engines and aviation systems for major clients, including Boeing and various military contracts. This segment also benefits from a lucrative aftermarket business for engine repair and maintenance. The recovery in commercial air travel post-pandemic and growing defense orders have favored GE Aerospace, despite past challenges such as travel restrictions and supply chain issues affecting aerospace suppliers.

However, GE stock is currently not within the typical buy range due to its recent performance surge. Considering the cyclical and uncertain nature of the aviation industry, coupled with potential global economic and geopolitical risks, the stance is that GE stock is not an immediate buy. This cautious perspective considers the stock’s technical position and the broader challenges facing an industrial giant like General Electric, despite its significant transformation and growth in aerospace.

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J&P Electrical is a full-service electrical supply company. At J&P, we source contractors, end-users, and supply houses with new surplus, quality reconditioned, and obsolete electrical equipment. We also purchase a wide range of heavy industrial electrical equipment such as bus plugs, bus duct, transformers, circuit breakers, fuses, and switchboards. Call us at 877-844-5514 for assistance.  

Written by the digital marketing team at Creative Programs & Systems: www.cpsmi.com

Bats: Spring Roosting in Colorado

Image of bats roosting in an attic.

As the snow melts and the days lengthen, Colorado residents might notice more than just the return of warm weather and blooming flowers. Spring marks the beginning of the roosting season for many bat species, a natural process that can lead to close encounters with these winged inhabitants, particularly in the cozy confines of our attics and barns.

Understanding Bats

Bats are a crucial part of Colorado’s ecosystem, essential in controlling insect populations and pollinating plants. Colorado is home to 18 bat species, including the Little Brown Bat (Myotis lucifugus) and the Big Brown Bat (Eptesicus fuscus), known to roost in human structures. Bats inhabit all types of environments throughout the state, ranging from the eastern plains and lofty mountain woodlands to the western deserts and even in urban areas from countryside villages to the heart of Denver. They play a crucial role in pollinating flora and agricultural produce and managing insect numbers, as all species of bats in our region consume insects.

Why Bats Choose Attics

Attics offer a warm, sheltered environment for bats to roost, breed, and rear their young. These spaces mimic the natural cavities found in trees, providing a perfect substitute for bat colonies. During spring, female bats seek out safe places to form maternity colonies and give birth, making attics an attractive option.

If a single bat enters a building, often it’s because a door or window was left open. Typically, the bat will exit on its own if there’s an open window or door. Should the bat remain indoors, you can gently capture and release it with these steps:

  • Wear leather gloves, wait for the bat to land, then cover it with a small container.
  • Insert a piece of cardboard between the container and the wall, allowing the bat to fall into the container.
  • Release the bat outside, ideally near trees or shelter.

Identifying a Bat Infestation

A bat colony in your house can pose a significant health risk to humans and domestic animals, and the noise and odors from a large group can be bothersome. Such colonies often represent maternity roosts. Convincing these bats to vacate can be challenging, as common deterrents like mothballs and ultrasonic devices are ineffective. Moreover, using pesticides or poisons against bats is illegal, as this could lead to dead bats decomposing within your home and increase the risk of exposure to humans and pets. The signs of a bat infestation include:

  • Noises: Scratching, squeaking, or crawling sounds in walls or attics, especially at dusk or dawn.
  • Guano: Bat droppings resemble mouse droppings but are larger and contain insect parts.
  • Stains: Grease marks where bats enter and exit, along with urine stains on walls or insulation.
  • Odor: A strong, musky odor from bat guano and urine.

While bats play a beneficial role outdoors, they may cause health risks inside your home. Bat guano can harbor the fungus that causes histoplasmosis, a respiratory disease. Moreover, although rare, bats can carry rabies, a risk to humans and pets if bitten.

Preventing and Managing Bat Infestations

If bats have already taken up residence, consider hiring a pest control professional specializing in humane bat removal, such as Front Range Pest. We can implement exclusion methods that allow bats to leave but prevent them from returning without harming them. Excluding bats, especially maternity roosts, is best done in late summer or fall to ensure the young bats can independently forage.

Pre-Spring Bat Inspection & Exclusion:

  • Check your attic: Look for entry points, such as cracks or holes in the roof, vents, or eaves.
  • Inspect the entire building: Seach for entry points, such as chimneys, vents, and gaps in soffits or joists, and look for signs like staining or bat droppings that indicate entrances.
  • Conduct observations: At dusk to see where bats enter/exit the building.
  • Monitor Active Entrances: Over several evenings to gauge the size of the bat colony.
  • Install One-Way Bat Exclusion Devices: At entrance points, allowing bats to leave but preventing their return.
  • Make Needed Repairs: Seal up all other potential entry points near the exclusion sites, including gaps larger than ¼ inch.
  • Keep the exclusion devices in place for at least a week to ensure all bats have exited.
  • Remove the devices and permanently seal the entry points.
  • Maintain the property by trimming tree branches away from the house to limit access.

Coexisting with Bats

It’s important to remember that bats are protected under Colorado law and benefit the environment. Any attempt to remove or deter bats must be humane and comply with state regulations. Consider creating a bat-friendly environment on your property, such as installing a bat house. This can provide bats with an alternative roosting spot away from your home while allowing them to continue their vital role in the ecosystem. As spring approaches in Colorado, being mindful of our winged neighbors and taking proactive steps can ensure a peaceful coexistence. By understanding bats’ habits and needs, we can appreciate their role in our environment while keeping our homes safe and healthy.

If you suspect bats in your home or office, contact Front Range Pest for humane and effective removal.

Front Range Pest is your trusted, family-owned pest and wildlife control company serving central Colorado and southern Wyoming. Our certified technicians have the expertise and credentials to ensure effective pest management for your home or business. As your all-in-one insect and wildlife specialists, we offer peace of mind by identifying wildlife entry points, removing nuisance pests, sealing access areas, performing cleanup, and making essential repairs. Schedule an inspection with us today.

Written by the digital marketing team at Creative Programs & Systems: www.cpsmi.com

Construction Bidding Season is Near; Are You Prepared?

Image of happy construction workers.

We are fast approaching the construction bidding season. Contact Construction Bonding Specialists, LLC – we are ready to guide you through pre-qualifying for your bond applications for municipalities, schools, and public works that will soon be opening.

Our specialty is helping you secure the construction bonds you need. We’ll decipher the paperwork and make recommendations to ensure you stand out!

Construction Bonding Specialists offers a variety of surety bonds, including:

  • Bid Bonds
  • Performance and Payment Bonds
  • License and Permit Bonds
  • Maintenance Bonds
  • and more!

Construction Bonding Specialists knows what is required to expedite the process. We have years of experience in the industry, giving us an advantage you can count on. Our professionals can assist you whether you need a simple bond or something more complex.

Visit our website to download the most common bond applications and forms. If you’re unsure how to get started or wish to discuss further, contact us today for prompt follow-up.

BONDS ARE ALL WE DO!

Contact us today to discover how we can assist you.

At Construction Bonding Specialists, we work with new and experienced contractors to find the most satisfactory bond solutions. As a dedicated surety-bond-only agency with decades of bonding experience, we strive to discover surety solutions for all types of cases, ranging from routine to challenging. Contact us online or call us at 248-349-6227 to learn more.

Written by the digital marketing team at Creative Programs & Systems: www.cpsmi.com

The Top 3 Bathroom Upgrades to Maximum Your ROI

Image of a modern bathroom with a marble backsplash, slab countertop, and a wheelchair accessible sink.

Enhancing your bathroom not only boosts your home’s value but also strengthens the appeal to potential buyers, with renovations offering an average return of around 70%. Interestingly, a comprehensive overhaul isn’t always necessary to reap these benefits. Since bathrooms, particularly master baths, are often key considerations for buyers, updating a dated or lackluster bathroom can significantly enhance your property’s marketability. Whether you’re aiming to sell your home or simply improve it for your enjoyment, here are three strategic bathroom upgrades that promise a solid return on investment:

  • Revitalize the Backsplash and/or Flooring: Elevating your bathroom’s aesthetic can be as straightforward as updating the backsplash or flooring. This change, while seemingly simple, can drastically alter the room’s vibe. For a universally appealing look, opt for classic, versatile tiles. However, if you’re looking to make a statement, consider bold colors, distinctive shapes, or mixed materials. Flooring choices should complement the overall design without dating the space, with standard-sized tiles in neutral colors offering timeless appeal.
  • Invest in Slab Countertops: The elegance and durability of slab countertops make them a popular choice. These countertops not only enhance the aesthetic appeal of your vanity area but also contribute to a high-end look for the entire bathroom. Materials like panoramic porcelain slabs mimic the beauty of natural stone while offering the benefits of low maintenance and high durability. Natural stone countertops remain unmatched for those seeking the ultimate in luxury, maintaining their pristine appearance even under daily use.
  • Incorporate Universal Design Features: Adapting your bathroom to include universal design elements can significantly boost its appeal. This approach isn’t just about accessibility for those with disabilities; it’s about creating a convenient and comfortable space for everyone. Features like curbless showers cater to users of all ages and abilities, and thoughtful touches like open vanity spaces under the countertop offer wheelchair accessibility and practical benefits for a wide range of users.

Thoughtfully updating your bathroom can substantially increase your home’s value and appeal. By focusing on key areas like the backsplash, flooring, countertops, and inclusive design features, you can create a space that looks stunning and meets the needs of all potential buyers. Explore your bathroom tile and countertop options to find the perfect fit for your renovation project.

Contact JFC Remodeling if you’re considering a bathroom remodel or a renovation for any part of the home!

JFC Remodeling is committed to providing top-quality home reconstruction services to clients throughout Livingston County. With over 30 years of experience in the industry, our licensed contractors create unique, individualized, and polished renovations. Whether the site requires improvement, repair, or is a new construction, you can trust our experts to deliver remarkable results. Call or email us to learn more.

Written by the digital marketing team at Creative Programs & Systems: www.cpsmi.com