Jeny Smith | San Francisco
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Homes are flying off the market in SF and the greater Bay Area

SFGate recently published a report that said homes are selling faster in the Bay Area than anywhere else in the nation. That doesn’t mean that all homes are selling. For example, homes at the higher end of the market will take longer to sell. But well-priced homes in good condition in generally good locations are selling – and selling fast.

San Francisco, as you might expect, tops the list. Followed by San Jose, Oakland, San Diego, Orange County and Seattle, in that order. It’s interesting to note that among the 100 largest U.S. metros, 8 of the 10 fastest-moving housing markets are in California.

How fast is fast? Consider this: Out of all the homes listed in February, 2015, only 30% of homes for sale in the San Francisco Bay Area are still on the market this April, vs. 70% of homes in Long Island and Albany, NY metros. In the city of San Francisco, only 26% of homes are still for sale after two months – homes are selling that fast!

 

If you’d like to know what your home is worth feel free to give us a call, no obligation. We are never too busy for any of your referrals!

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Are you prepared for the next earthquake?

GET A KIT.


At a minimum, have the basic supplies listed below. Keep supplies in an easy to carry emergency preparedness kit that you can use at home or take with you in case you must evacuate.

    • Water—one gallon per person, per day (3 day supply for evacuation, 2 week supply for home)
    • Food—non perishable, easy to prepare items (3 day supply for evacuation, 2 week supply for home)
    • Flashlight
    • Battery powered or hand crank radio (NOAA Weather Radio, if possible)
    • Extra batteries
    • First aid kit
    • Medications (7 day supply) and medical items
    • Multi purpose tool
    • Sanitation and personal hygiene items
    • Copies of personal documents (medication list and pertinent medical information, proof of address, deed/lease to home, passports, birth certificates, insurance policies)
    • Cell phone with chargers
    • Family and emergency contact information
    • Extra cash
    • Emergency blanket
    • Map(s) of the area


Consider the needs of all family members and add supplies to your kit. Suggested items to help meet additional needs are:

    • Medical supplies (hearing aids with extra batteries, glasses, contact lenses, syringes, cane)
    • Baby supplies (bottles, formula, baby food, diapers)
    • Games and activities for children
    • Pet supplies (collar, leash, ID, food, carrier, bowl)
    • Two way radios
    • Extra set of car keys and house keys
    • Manual can opener


Additional supplies to keep at home or in your kit based on the types of disasters common to your area:

    • Whistle
    • N95 or surgical masks
    • Matches
    • Rain gear
    • Towels
    • Work gloves
    • Tools/supplies for securing your home
    • Extra clothing, hat and sturdy shoes
    • Plastic sheeting
    • Duct tape
    • Scissors
    • Household liquid bleach
    • Entertainment items
    • Blankets or sleeping bags


To see more information, the Red Cross has some very useful documents and 72 hours.org is another great place to learn more.

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Exciting news about greywater systems in San Francisco!

greywaterThere is a new greywater resource available from the San Francisco Public Utility Commission!


The San Francisco Graywater Design Manual is available to be downloaded here:
http://sfwater.org/modules/showdocument.aspx?documentid=55

In it are step-by-step instructions for building a laundry to landscape system and general info on other systems, irrigation with greywater, sample operation and maintenance manuals, and more! This manual is in draft form, so please read and use it and submit your comments so it can be improved upon.

You can also apply to be part of a laundry to landscape pilot study and receive free training and parts to build your system if you live in San Francisco, see the website listed above for details.

There is also a great article and video out in Metropolis Mag by some journalism students who did a workshop with Greywater Action.

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SF Urban Orchards Program

The San Francisco Urban Orchard Program is accepting applications for the Great January Fruit Tree program! SF Environment is working with Friends of the Urban Forest to plant 200 fruit trees in January 2013. The trees will be planted at twenty locations throughout the city, targeting school and community gardens as well as other publicly accessible private spaces.


Friends of the Urban Forest and their tree stewards will help identify and prepare planting locations within their gardens, assist with tree selection, and provide care to trees until they’re established. Tree stewards will take on day-to-day tree care, such as ensuring the tree is watered and enjoying and sharing the fruit.

To become a tree steward and have fruit trees planted in your garden, contactdouglybeck@fuf.net for more information and to be placed on the outreach list.

Repost from http://sfenvironment.org/news/update/san-franciscos-urban-orchards-program

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Garden for the Environment May Classes!!

Garden for the Environment will offer the following classes in May of 2013.  All classes will be offered at Garden for the Environment, San Francisco’s organic demonstration garden at 7th and Lawton Street.  Since our founding in 1990, the garden has operated as a demonstration site for small-scale urban ecological food production, organic gardening, compost education and low water-use landscaping.


UPCOMING ORGANIC GARDENING AND COMPOSTING WORKSHOPS

CITY CHICKENS! AND DUCKS TOO!
Date:  Saturday, April 27, 2013 Time:  10AM – 12 NOON
Location:  Garden for the Environment, 7th Ave at Lawton Street, San Francisco Cost:  $25/$15 for members
Begin your morning by harvesting fresh eggs from your own urban back yard! You can keep chickens and ducks in San Francisco! Join Paul Glowaski, Co-Founder of Urban Eggs & Farmer at Dinner Bell Farm, for an exciting workshop on organic “eggriculture”. Whether you dream of just a few chickens, or dozens, you will learn all you need to know to keep even your chickens (or ducks) healthy and happy in San Francisco. This class will walk you through the entire process, including: ordering chicks, organic feed for chickens and ducks, sanitation & human health considerations. This workshop is $25/$15 members, although no one will be turned away for lack of funds. Pre-registration is required.

URBAN COMPOSTING
Date: Saturday, May 4, 2013 Time: 10AM – 12 NOON
Location: Garden for the Environment, 7th Ave at Lawton Street, San Francisco
Cost: Free, Sponsored by the San Francisco Department of the Environment
Spring can be a great time to start a new compost pile as you tidy up the leftovers of your fall leaves!  Join GFE as we discover how to turn those leftovers, either from the garden or the kitchen, into “black gold”. This fun, hands-on workshop teaches methods for both backyard and worm composting for all seeking to enrich the bounty of their garden and reduce their ecological footprint.  Come learn what you can do to improve your garden and prevent organic waste from ending up in the landfill! Rot on! This workshop is FREE!

GARDEN TOUR: NATURAL PLANT CARE
Date:  Saturday, May 4, 2013 Time:  1PM
Location:  Garden for the Environment, 7th Ave at Lawton Street, San Francisco
Cost:  Free, Sponsored by the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission
Learn how to sustain your garden naturally as we tour the GFE staff.  We’ll discuss the natural plant care techniques we use and answer your questions. This tour is FREE!


GROW YOUR OWN FOOD
Date:  Saturday, May 11, 2013 Time:  10AM – 12 NOON
Location:  Garden for the Environment, 7th Ave at Lawton Street, San Francisco
Cost:  $25/$15 for members
Year-round gardening is one of our favorite things about the Bay Area and now, as we find ourselves in the heart of spring, it’s time to start thinking about our summer food production! Join us for this class which we offer every month for seasonal-specific instruction for year-round vegetable gardening.
This month we’ll cover:
– Vegetables to plant in Spring and when to harvest them
– Seasonal Spring Plant Care
– Seasonal Soil Fertility and garden bed preparation
This workshop is $25/$15 members, although no one will be turned away for lack of funds. Pre-registration is required. To pre-register or for more information please visit http://www.gardenfortheenvironment.org.


GARDEN TOUR: WATER-WISE GARDENING
Date:  Saturday, May 11, 2013 Time:  1PM
Location:  Garden for the Environment, 7th Ave at Lawton Street, San Francisco
Cost:  Free, Sponsored by the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission
Join us for an informative tour of Garden for the Environment’s climate-appropriate demonstration garden focusing on water-wise gardening techniques and plants appropriate for San Francisco’s Summer-Dry Climate. Learn how you can create a beautiful garden with plants that need little or no summer water. It’s good for the environment and for the water bill! This tour is FREE!

NATURAL PLANT CARE
Date: Saturday, May 18, 2013 Time: 10AM – 12 NOON
Location: Garden for the Environment, 7th Ave at Lawton Street, San Francisco
Cost: Free, Sponsored by the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission
Sustain your garden naturally with simple and practical tips. We’ll teach you sustainable practices for controlling weeds, fertilizing, and controlling pests. This class will take you a step closer to a beautiful and bountiful non-toxic garden.
Topics covered include:
Weed control
Value of mulch
Non-toxic weed control
Moisture and weed seed germination
Growing healthy plants
Alternatives to chemical fertilizers
Natural pest management
Beneficial Insects vs. harmful Insects

URBAN BEEKEEPING 101
Date:  Saturday, June 1, 2013 Time:  10AM – 12 NOON
Cost:  $25/$15 for members
Are you interested in learning how to keep bees even though you live in an urban environment? Join GFE and local beekeeping instructor Paul Koski of the San Francisco Beekeeper Association for an introduction to urban beekeeping and learn how to manage an urban honey beehive in San Francisco. In this introductory class participants will learn about beekeeping supplies and equipment, where to get bees, and how to install them into a hive. The class will be concerned with honeybee biology, responsibilities of urban beekeepers, the importance of bees for pollination and honey production. Topics for discussion will include honeybee castes, colony seasonal dynamics, hive components and keys to success for keeping honeybees in an urban area. If weather permits, we plan to open a hive to give participants an up-close look into an active honeybee colony. This workshop is $25/$15 members, although no one will be turned away for lack of funds. Pre-registration is required.

URBAN COMPOSTING
Date: Saturday, June 1, 2013 Time: 10AM – 12 NOON
Location: Garden for the Environment, 7th Ave at Lawton Street, San Francisco
Cost: Free, Sponsored by the San Francisco Department of the Environment
Summer can be a great time to start a new compost pile as you begin spending more time in your garden!  Join GFE as we discover how to turn those leftovers, either from the garden or the kitchen, into “black gold”. This fun, hands-on workshop teaches methods for both backyard and worm composting for all seeking to enrich the bounty of their garden and reduce their ecological footprint.  Come learn what you can do to improve your garden and prevent organic waste from ending up in the landfill! Rot on! This workshop is FREE!


The Garden for the Environment is wheelchair accessible.
http://www.gardenfortheenvironment.org
(415) 558-8246
EMAIL:info@gardenfortheenvironment.org
CONTACT: Garden for the Environment, Executive Director, Blair Randall, Maggie Guerra, Programs Manager

 

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Real Estate Update

According to CNNMoney, home sales continue to improve across the country. The National Association of Realtors (NAR) reported that the annual sales pace in December reached 4.6 million homes, up 5% from November’s pace and 3.5% from a year ago.


It was the third straight month of improvement in the pace of sales. Obviously, homebuyers are feeling a bit better about the market across the nation – the result of record low mortgage interest rates, job growth and bargain home prices.

Let’s hope this trend continues.

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