Winter's Here: Learn How to Prepare Your Plants, Trees and Other Landscaping

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From the approaching holiday season to the New Year, there are a lot of things to prepare for when it comes to the winter. It's important, though, not to forget about the needs of your lawn for the upcoming cold season. If you're wondering how to ready your trees, your plants and your yard, here are some tips for saving your vegetation until the springtime.

Fertilize For Grass Growth

It might seem like a waste of time to fertilize your grass going into the winter months, but this is actually the perfect time to prep it for spring. As fertilizer will provide much-needed nutrients to the grass in the months when there is less growth, it will actually stimulate improved growth down the road. It's just important to ensure that you provide a consistent amount of fertilizer so a patchy-looking yard can be avoided. Since weeds scale back in winter, like most other varieties of plants, it can also be an ideal time to apply a herbicide.

Garden Plants And Perennials

While plant maintenance duties like pruning can be done in the spring or fall months, it can actually be a better idea to give your plants the summer months to grow before diving in. Cutting them back will enable the plant to focus its energy on maintenance through the cold winter months, so it's a good idea to get to work in before the first signs of cooler air set in.  If you happen to have plants that won't last through the winter, you'll want to compost them so they can be used for soil in the next gardening season.

Clearing Away The Wood

Beyond the garden and the lawn, it's also worthwhile to provide a little care for your favorite trees before the winter hits. While you'll want to be cautious about what you do and may want to consult with a gardening professional, clearing away dead branches can help your tree retain its health throughout the year. You may notice the difference in your trees when the spring rolls around again, as they'll likely have a revitalized look and show signs of new growth.

Winter is a busy time for many people, but it's important to make the time to fertilize your grass and prune your perennials so your yard will be ready for spring. 

Location, Location, Location: How to Ensure You're Buying a Home in the Right Community

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When investing in a home, one of the most important things is buying a place that you and your family can feel comfortable in. However, while a place you can envision yourself in is important, it's not worth neglecting the neighborhood you'll be moving into for the perfect home. If you're wondering what you should be looking for in the neighborhood you choose, here are a few things to consider before making an offer on a home.

Is It Safe?

It may be common to feel bowled over by a home and want to invest immediately, but the right home in the wrong neighborhood may not be the best choice for many reasons. Part of feeling comfortable in your home is being safe among its streets, so ensure you research the neighborhood and its history, and check in on the crime rate. You may even want to consult with your agent or some local neighbors to see what information they can provide about the area's history.

Are There Local Amenities?

If you're used to getting in the car to run errands, it might not be important to not have a grocery store or pharmacy nearby. However, if there are no amenities you use frequently close by, it can start to be a bit of a drain on your lifestyle. While you don't necessarily need to have the trendiest restaurants or best shopping, it's important to have a few choice places in case you run out of something and need to make a quick run to the store. 

What's Your Neighborhood Style?

It might seem like a strange thing to ask yourself, but the neighborhood you live in is going to become a big part of your life and that means you'll have to see yourself in it. If you want neighbors you can trust and community-mindedness, you'll want to seek out an area with these qualities. On the other side, if you happen to prefer a busier urban atmosphere that offers more independence, this may be the way to go.

There are a lot of things that go into finding the right home, but it's important not to forget about the neighborhood you're living in and what it will mean for your lifestyle. If you're currently considering homes and are trying to determine an area that will work for you, you may want to reach out to a local real estate professionals for more information.

5 Key Maintenance Tasks to Prepare Your Home for the Winter

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The days are getting shorter, the temperature is dropping and the kids are heading back to school. The approach of autumn means that winter is just around the corner. The question is – is your home ready? Break out your checklist and let's run through five key maintenance tasks that will get your home prepared to face the winter.

Pack Up And Protect Your Outdoor Furniture

Unfortunately, the arrival of winter means that the patio has to be closed up for the season. It's time to get chairs, tables and other furniture covered up or stored if you have space. The BBQ will also need to be covered or moved off to the shed or another dry area.

Get Your Windows Ready For Cold Weather

Next, take some time to inspect your windows for drafts, leaks and other issues. This can be as easy as shutting them tight on a windy day and using your senses to determine if any air is leaking in. Depending on where you live in the country, you might need to do some additional work on your windows to get them prepared for the cold.

Turn Down Your Garden, Plants And Flower Beds

Unless you have a garden full of robust, cold-loving plants, it's likely that you will see most of them die off as we move from autumn into winter. Spend some time turning down your gardens and other areas. This can help to move nutrients into the soil where they'll be ready to nourish new plants in the spring.

Check Your Furnace And Heating Ducts

If you haven't used it in a few months, now is the time to fire up the furnace and check the home's heating system. The last thing you want is to discover that your home isn't heating on the first cold night!

Consider Giving The Roof And Gutters A Quick Inspection

Last but not least, don't forget to check your roof for any damage or areas that might be prone to leaking. You will also want to check the gutters to ensure they are clear of debris. Keep in mind that this does involve climbing up a ladder and physically inspecting these areas. If you're not good with heights or don't own the proper equipment, don't sweat it. Give a professional roofing team a call and have them handle the inspection instead.

The better your home is prepared for winter, the less likely you are to have a nasty surprise waiting for you in the spring. 

7 Event Ideas That Your HOA Can Plan for Community Togetherness During the Holiday Season.

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The Holidays are a wonderful time to bring people together. Young and old, neighbors
gather together to celebrate the holidays with peace and joy. Most communities are very fortunate to have many diverse cultures, ethnicities, religions and traditions. One thing all people have in common is the belief that the holidays are for celebrating families, for helping one another, and for celebrating all that we have to be grateful for in life. 

 Residents who lead and volunteer on the HOA board often try to bring the community together during the holidays. They want to help residents get in the spirit of giving and sharing. 

Here are 7 event ideas that your HOA can plan for community togetherness during the holiday season.

1. A Charitable Donation Drive: Organize a toys for tots drive or canned goods drive to help needy families during the holidays.

2. Organize a White Elephant gift exchange. Have the event at the clubhouse or common area and have participating residents bring snacks to share.

3. Hold a holiday tree decorating contest. Ask residents to decorate small trees and select a winner.

4. Organize a Holiday cake bake off! Have residents get their best recipes and bake holiday cakes and have the HOA members vote!

5. Organize a community Progressive Party. Each participating homeowner provides a different item: appetizer, salad, side dish, etc and you eat "Dinner" as you move from house to house. Have a sign up for families that want to be involved in the event. Each family signs up for a time slot and opens their home to the group. First family has an appetizer, second family has first course, and so on. A few families can double up to lessen the burden of preparing the dish. 

6. Recipe Exchange - Have homeowners submit a favorite recipe for their favorite dish: chocolate dessert, favorite side dish, etc. Have the residents bring a sample of the finished dish to share and share the recipe.

7. Organize a volunteer day or evening event for your residents to participate in. Contact your local food bank or soup kitchen and arrange for your residents to help cook or feed the needy.  It's a great way for your community to give back. 

Community events come in many varieties with many different purposes. The holidays are the best time of year to get people involved.  Regardless of the purpose or the sponsor, involvement in community events can benefit all involved.

Announce a board meeting and delegate a special committee to start planning a holiday event in your community. You may be surprised how people come together. 

AMG Working With Charity To Benefit Underprivileged Children

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AMG  Working With Charity To Benefit Underprivileged Children 

- AMG is participating in our 3rd Operation Christmas Child supported by Samaritan’s Purse and the Salvation Army’s Angel Tree. The charity benefits underprivileged children who otherwise would not receive Christmas gifts.

-To participate, please visit www.samaritanspurse.org/occ or visit a public Angel Tree location at News & Record [200 E Market St], Whole Foods in Friendly Center or Morehead Foundry

-Donation cut-off is December 4

-Please drop off your donations to one of the three public Angel Tree locations or bring to Jamie Rettie at the Greensboro AMG office

-Help AMG make children’s Christmas’ this year a little brighter!

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10 Tips To Secure Holiday Packages Delivered To Your Door

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Burglars scout neighborhoods prior to the holidays looking for easy targets. Packages sitting on doorsteps , on lawn chairs or sticking out of mailboxes are all a sign of the residence being unattended. Most HOA's struggle with crime during the holidays. While it is not the responsibility of the HOAs to secure or accept  delivered packages, they can assist residents with support, resources and tips to reduce burglary during the holiday season.

Around 23 million people said their packages have been stolen from their homes, according to a December 2015 survey from insuranceQuotes.com.

UPS delivers 17 million packages around the world every day and much more during this time of the year. In fact, during December, they will delivering some 585 million packages, with single-day volume surging as high as 34 million on their peak day December 22.  

Here are a few tips that all of your neighbors can use to help keep your community free of crime this holiday season.

1. Ask a neighbor to watch your home for the delivery of holiday packages and to retrieve the packages until you arrive home.

2. Consider an alternate destination. Have your packages delivered to work, family or friends. Encourage residents to use different delivery options or addresses during the high-crime season. Have packages delivered where someone can accept them, or require a signature.

3. Instruct the delivery company. Find a non visible place at your home and leave detailed instructions as to where to hide the package. FedEx and UPS drivers will place packages behind a gate, shrub, or other location; residents should contact their carrier.

4. Be diligent about tracking your expected holiday packages. Residents can often receive a text message when their package is delivered. This will eliminate your package sitting in the open for long periods of time.

5. Help your HOA by volunteering a few hours in your Neighborhood Watch program. Extra eyes can help deter crime and stop burglary in progress.

6.  Require a signature so that your item won't be left unattended. It may be a little inconvenient, but you can have the package redelivered or go pick it up at the local station.

7. Most homes have a security camera so that, if a theft occurs, you have proof for insurance purposes and to help police find the burglar.

8. Customize your deliveries. Use FedEx Delivery Manager® to customize your residential deliveries. You can change the time of delivery. You can select the actual time you will be home from work. During the holidays they deliver late evening hours.

9.  Signs for security systems can be a great deterrent for thieves. Post a security warning sign near your front door. These warning signs can help protect your packages and your whole house as well. 

10. Insure your packages if they are valuable. At least if your holiday package goes missing you will recover the money for valuables. 

Security cameras may work well, but check with your HOA about policies regarding security cameras and where they can be located. Some HOAs may restrict usage of cameras (especially "dummy" cameras) for reasons of liability. If your community has a serious crime problem ask your HOA to support asking local law enforcement to patrol the neighborhood more frequently.

Strong communities can reduce crime. Owners who know their neighbors are more likely to report suspicious behavior. Although midway through the holidays may be too late, boards should try community-building events throughout the year. At minimum, make sure that everyone has the appropriate police phone number.

Help your neighbors have a great holiday season by stopping burglary of holiday packages. Involve your HOA and at least ask them for recommendations on how to handle the issue in your neighborhood.

Learning to Love Technology: 3 Tips That Will Help You to Embrace Home Automation

Learning to Love Technology

Learning to Love Technology

Are you still using a key to unlock your door and twisting a dial on the wall to set the temperature? Home automation technology has made considerable strides in the past couple of years, so it might be time to invest. In today's blog post we will explore three tips that can help those looking to make the leap into a fully automated home.

Tip #1: Start With Home Security And Go From There

Installing a modern home security system is the perfect place to start with home automation. Does your home already have an alarm? If so, it's likely to be one of the older "set it and forget it" models. You punch in a four-digit code when you leave the house to arm the alarm, and if someone decides to break in while you're gone the alarm trips and notifies the security company. Sound familiar?

The good news is that there are far better and more high-tech options on the market today. You can install cameras that connect directly to your phone, so you can see what's happening inside of your house. You can automate turning the lights on or off, as well as deciding what panic options you need in case a burglar shows up.

Tip #2: Consider Using A Central Hub

If you're not as technologically-inclined as some, then you may want to consider using a central hub to help control all of the other automated pieces in your home. Amazon's Alexa is a popular option, as are Mi Casa Verde and SmartThings. The idea is that you can use one single device to control everything else, rather than trying to figure out a myriad of apps and settings.

Don't forget that once you lock into using a central hub, you will need to make sure that any new pieces of tech you invest in are supported.

Tip #3: If It's Easy To Use, You'll Use It Regularly

Finally, be sure to test things out before you decide to buy. If a piece of home automation tech is hard to use, you're unlikely to stick with it over the long term. Ideally, setting up and using the device should be no harder than using your mobile phone.

Getting started with home automation is as simple as following the three tips above. When you're ready to look at high-tech, automated homes in the local area, contact us. Our professional real estate team is happy to show you around.

WINTER IS COMING...ARE YOU READY?

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Ready or not, winter is quickly approaching and far too often, condominium associations find themselves unprepared for Mother Nature’s wrath. Accordingly, it is essential for condominium associations to plan for the winter ahead, even as the last of our summer tans are still fading.

First, associations should ensure that the condominium’s insurance coverage is up to date and is consistent with the requirements set forth in the condominium’s declaration of by-laws. It is also recommended that the association remind unit owners to have their own H06 policies to cover their own personal property in the event of a loss. Additionally, associations should have a clear plan in place for the reporting of insurance claims to the condominium’s property manager and/or to the managing board, and the association should disseminate that protocol in advance to all unit owners, so that the association will have an easier time managing and fielding calls following a widespread loss, i.e., the reporting of ice dam conditions.

Some things (like ice dams) may be unavoidable, despite an association’s reasonable efforts to remove snow and ice. However, an association is still required to exercise reasonable care to properly maintain the condominium’s common areas during winter months and during periods of prolonged inclement weather. To that end, associations should regularly remove snow from the condominium’s common area roof(s) and/or awnings. Additionally, associations should clear ice and icicles from common areas to prevent ice from falling. In some cases, this may prove difficult if the common areas where icicles may be forming are not easily accessible (particularly during those winters where a significant amount of snow falls). However, even if these common areas are not easily accessible, it does not absolve associations of their obligations to maintain the same. Therefore, it is important that associations have a plan in place for investigating those difficult to reach areas, and it may be helpful in such instances to request that all unit owners or residents whose units are adjacent to those common areas, to promptly report any adverse condition, which the association may not otherwise be aware of.
 

It's The Season For Pumpkin Spice

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This is the time of year to enjoy the flavor of pumpkin. It seems everyone is trying to invent their own recipe.  It may not be the real Pumpkin Spice Latte, but it is pretty close. Go ahead and give it a try. Don't forget to top it with whipped cream and pumpkin pie spice.

Ingredients You Will Need

  • 1 cup milk, divided
  • 1 tablespoon white sugar
  • 1 tablespoon pumpkin puree
  • 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup brewed espresso 
  • Whipped cream (optional)
  • Sprinkles for top (optional)

Directions

  1. Blend 1/2 cup milk, sugar, pumpkin puree, pumpkin pie spice, and vanilla extract in a small saucepan over low heat. Simmer for 5 minutes. Whisk in remaining 1/2 cup milk.
  2. Pour milk mixture through a fine strainer. Return milk mixture to saucepan and simmer, blending, 2 minutes. Add espresso and whisk until foamy.
  3. Add whipped cream and toppings as desired.

Fall Is A Great Time For Family Outdoor Activities

Fall is a great time for families to map out and plan time for activities to ensure they are added to the daily routine. Here are some ideas for outdoor family fun and exercise.

  • Family community or nature walks - 20-30 minutes will provide the daily recommended 20-30 minutes of moderate physical aerobic activity.
  • Biking -- is a great low impact aerobic exercise the entire family will love.
  • Hiking -- If your neighborhood has walking or hiking trails this is a great activity.
  • Gardening -- is a fun way to teach the importance of daily care/maintenance and learn about healthy eating. In addition, the family can get satisfaction in eating the harvest.

Benefits of physical activity:

The benefits of exercise extend far beyond weight management. Research shows that regular physical activity can help reduce your risk for several diseases and health conditions and improve your overall quality of life. Regular physical activity can help protect you from many health problems.

It’s important for kids of all ages to get enough exercise to help prevent childhood obesity. In fact, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommend that school-aged kids and teens get at least 60 minutes of physical activity per day. But how do you make it happen?

 Spending more time together and indulging in leisure activities strengthens the family bond.  This holds true to all type of activities. They don’t always need to be such that require a bigger sum of money. Even home-based, low-cost activities such as playing a board game, gardening or playing outdoors have a big impact on the ‘health’ of the family.

The weather is great for outdoor activities. Get the family together or get families from your neighborhood and enjoy the great outdoors.

You can also plan a few fall family outings that everyone will enjoy. Here are 5 ideas:

  • Sit around a campfire
  • Collect some leaves
  • Drink some apple cider
  • Visit an apple orchard
  • Visit a farm

Use this special fall season to make new lasting memories with your family.

 

 

A Lot Of Good People In The World

Thursday I had the honor of traveling with Samaritan's Purse on a relief mission to Puerto Rico. Since the hurricanes have decimated much of the Caribbean, Samaritan's Purse has been flying regular relief missions in its DC-8 from Greensboro, North Carolina to the Caribbean.
As a Board member and the Treasurer of the Piedmont Triad International Airport and as a commercial pilot, I was invited to accompany the organization on its mission October 5. I arrived at the airport at that wonderful time just before dawn when the sun is beginning to creep over the horizon.

First of all, I was amazed by the size and freight-hauling capabilities of the DC-8. The DC-8, manufactured by McDonnell Douglas, first went into production in the 1950s and was produced through the early 1970s. It became known as a workhouse freight and long-distance carrier. To this day it is one of the most efficient airplanes available, particularly for long-distance hauling. As configured by Samaritan's Purse, its DC-8 can fly at nearly 500 miles an hour for up to 15 hours hauling freight and 32 passengers.

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Samaritan's Purse's capabilities to quickly swing into action to aid those in need is incredible. Not only does the organization have the equipment and facilities to deliver much-needed aid, but it also has a team of amazing individuals who dispense the supplies with professionalism and caring. They organization, known for its strong religious connection, has a passion to help those in need, which is truly amazing. It takes a large, dedicated team to deliver disaster relief. In this case, the team consists of dozens of highly professional individuals serving in roles from pilots to line persons, flight attendants, logistic and administrative support and legal staff.

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As we landed in Puerto Rico, a little over three hours after leaving PTI with much-needed supplies, I was struck by the thought that while the news is often filled with horrifying reports of disheartening events, how refreshing it was to see people who get up every day with the aim of helping others. I understand that in North Carolina, Samaritan's Purse has more than 700 employees supporting its worldwide relief efforts. The dozen or so people I met assisting with this relief effort are truly amazing people who I want to thank! The world needs more people from all faiths willing to help those less fortunate and in need.

Paul Mengert, President and CEO of Association Management Group, Inc. in the cockpit of a DC8 relief mission to Puerto Rico. 

Paul Mengert, President and CEO of Association Management Group, Inc. in the cockpit of a DC8 relief mission to Puerto Rico. 

Food Safety During a Power Outage

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Power failures can be one of the most annoying—and disabling—occurrences in a community. Whether caused by summer storms, power lines crippled by winter ice, equipment failure, an overloaded regional grid or an animal disrupting a power line, electrical outages can be costly, uncomfortable—and without forethought—sometimes even dangerous.

Residents can face many hazards when a power failure occurs—usually without any warning—including losing refrigerated and frozen foods. Some food items can be salvaged, however, if you’re prepared.

In anticipation of a power failure:

  • Have at least one or two coolers on hand, and at least one spare 5-pound bag of ice in the freezer.
  • Know where to get bag, block or dry ice quickly when you need it, particularly if you anticipate a long-term outage. (Caution: Dry ice is made from carbon dioxide, so it requires safe handling. Never breathe in its vapors or touch it with your bare hands.) According to the Food Safety Branch of Kentucky’s Department of Health, a 50-pound block of dry ice will keep a tightly packed, 18-cubic-foot freezer cool for up to two days.
  • Have an instant food thermometer or appliance thermometer available to ensure your freezers, refrigerators and coolers are staying cool enough store food safely.
  • Arrange the refrigerator and freezer efficiently. Frozen food will last longer in a full freezer—up to 48 hours if tightly packed—and refrigerated food will last longer—up to four hours—if there is room for air to circulate around items.

When the electricity goes off:

  • Avoid opening and closing the refrigerator unless absolutely necessary.
  • Cook and use perishable food before using canned food.
  • Check the temperature of refrigerated foods if the power is out for more than a few hours. Discard any food item than has been at 40° F or warmer for two or more hours. Exceptions include butter and margarine; hard cheeses like Parmesan and Romano; some condiments like mustard, peanut butter, soy sauce, olives and vinegar-based salad dressing; and fresh, uncooked fruits and vegetables.
  • Check the temperature of frozen foods as well. While tightly packed freezer foods will stay frozen for many hours, some items that may have thawed can be refrozen if they still retain ice crystals or have remained at a temperature lower than 40°. Fruit and vegetable juices; breads, rolls and pie crusts; flour, cornmeal and nuts; meat and chicken; and prepared foods and casseroles can be refrozen safely if they have not been at 40° F or warmer for more than two hours.
  • After the power comes back on, you may need to deodorize the refrigerator and freezer by washing surfaces with a solution of 2 tablespoons baking soda dissolved in a quart of warm water. Place an open box of baking soda inside the refrigerator to absorb any lingering odors.

Since the appearance and odor of a food item isn’t an accurate indication of its safety after a power outage, use the 40° rule-of-thumb. And when in doubt, discard the food.

While a power can go out any time, most power failures occur between mid-July and late September. But no matter when our community experiences an outage—and it inevitably will—knowing how to handle frozen and refrigerated foods can help us keep your food supplies safe until the lights come back on.

Association Management Group Offers Community Safety Tips For Halloween

Association Management Group Offers Community Safety Tips For Halloween

Association Management Group Offers Community Safety Tips For Halloween

   Fall celebrations like Halloween and Harvest Day are fun times for children, who can dress up in costumes, enjoy parties, and eat yummy treats. These celebrations also provide a chance to give out healthy snacks, get physical activity, and focus on safety.

    Halloween is a popular time of year for kids and families. But Halloween comes with its own set of safety risks. Make sure you check with your homeowner's association for any specific rules pertaining to Halloween activities.

At AMG we would like to offer these 10 tips to make sure your community takes measures to help little ghosts and goblins stay safe while trick-or-treating.

1. Make sure your community has proper outdoor lighting so drivers can see costumes in the dark. It’s a startling fact that children are twice as likely to be hit by a car on Halloween than any other day of the year.

2. If there is no lighting provide children a glow-in-the-dark costume or a reflective trick-or-treat bag. Children should use a flashlight or glow stick when walking at night.

 3. Get together with neighbors and Trick-or-treat in a group. Kids younger than 13 should go with an adult. Older kids always should go in a group on a planned route that the parents have scheduled.

4. Before Halloween teach kids to cross streets at crosswalks and intersections, stop at street corners, look left, right and left again before crossing to make sure a vehicle is not coming.

5. Instruct children to only visit homes of people they know and only accept treats at the door. Enforce to children to never enter a home or car.

6. Make sure facial paints, cosmetics, masks and costumes are safe for walking. If a mask is used, make certain the eye and nose openings do not restrict vision or breathing.

7. When walking with children enter and exit driveways and alleys carefully

8. Tell your children not to eat any treats until they return home.

9. Have your neighborhood watch volunteers ready to be the eyes and ears of the neighborhood on Halloween night. Have someone on patrol.

10. Schedule an after Halloween volunteer clean up crew to go through community streets to clean up candy, paper and items from the big Trick-or-treat night.

Practice safe Halloween tips for the health and safety of families. AMG wishes your family a safe and happy Halloween

3 Key Reasons To Be A Good Neighbor And Community Member

National Good Neighbor Day is observed annually on September 28.    

National Good Neighbor Day is observed annually on September 28.  
 

Neighbors are an integral part of our social lives. Good Neighbor Day on September 28 is an annual holiday that promotes neighborliness and niceness towards people who surround us. 

According to a NAR Community Preference Survey, 78% of respondents said that the neighborhood is more important to them than the size of the home.  Neighbors are the ones you live within the same geographical area, share the same street, the same park, play with your children and are the closest to your family.

People are so quick to be at odds with their neighbors for various reasons. Neighborhood battles have been going on for years. There are several reasons why you should invest in getting to know your neighbor and cultivate a friendship with them.

3 Key Reasons To Be A Good Neighbor And Community Member

1. Peace and Harmony: No one really likes living a stressful life. Most of us dream of owning our home and living happily ever after. There can be no peace when you are fighting with your neighbors.  Try to accept your neighbors, respect their differences and their lifestyle. With all of the crime in America people resort to unlawful and crazy actions when challenged by neighbors. Strive to maintain a peaceful home, street, and most of all contribute to peace and harmony in your community.

2. Your Family's Safety: It's a good feeling to know that your neighbor has your back. A good relationship with your neighbor can benefit you in many ways. If you go on vacation they can watch after your home. If your child is out in the community they can have an eye on any situation you  may not see, they can come to your rescue if you have an emergency at home or offer family support in a crisis.

3. Contribute to the Community: When all neighbors are living peacefully the overall community lives at peace. Law enforcement is not frequently visiting the neighborhood and the value of the community is regarded higher. When the residents are living harmoniously the community is a better place for everyone.

Since 1985, Association Management Group (AMG) has offered clients a proven track record of excellence as the Carolinas' leading property management organization. Our goal is to preserve, protect and enhance the value of our client communities, which include homeowner Associations, condominium Associations, planned unit developments and common interest office communities. Our unique and proprietary systems keep our clients’ communities running smoothly, elevating the community Association experience for more than 30,000 property owners and community residents across North and South Carolina. 

copyright 2017© Association Management Group 

 

 

 

 

Paul K. Mengert, President and CEO of Association Management Group (AMG), will participate in Operation Smile’s 10th annual “Dancing with the Carolina Stars” fundraising event in February 2018.

Photo Cutline: AMG President/CEO Paul K. Mengert

Photo Cutline: AMG President/CEO Paul K. Mengert

Paul K. Mengert, president and CEO of Association Management Group (AMG), the Carolinas’ leading community association management company, has accepted the challenge to participate in Operation Smile’s 10th annual “Dancing with the Carolina Stars” fundraising event in February 2018.

Mengert will perform an original dance with the goal of raising a minimum of $10,000.

“Operational Smile is dedicated to providing cleft lip and palate repair surgeries to children worldwide, dramatically increasing their quality of life,” Mengert said. “While I am certainly not a dancer by nature, I am ready to step outside my comfort zone for this worthy cause.”

With 10 North Carolina Stars and two professional Showcase Dancers participating, Operation Smile hopes to raise upwards of $350,000 at the 2018 event to give at least 30 children the chance to receive new smiles.

Mengert and AMG have gained a reputation for community involvement in the Triad. Operation Smile’s spokesperson Stephen Hartley said, “Paul has a long history of giving back to the community. We could not be more excited to have Paul turn his fundraising efforts to such an important cause as Operation Smile.”

To learn more about Operation Smile and “Dancing with the Carolina Stars,” visit the organization’s webpage at https://operationsmile.org/events/dancing-carolina-stars

. For more about AMG, contact Joselin Paz at Jpaz@amgworld.com

About Association Management Group: AMG is the Carolinas’ leading professional community Association management company dedicated to building effective, successful community Associations. AMG guides and assists executive boards to help protect the Association's interests, enhance the lives of community members and improve the property values of the community. With offices throughout the Carolinas in Greensboro, Winston-Salem, Charlotte and Raleigh, N.C., as well as Greenville, S.C., AMG is a knowledgeable partner in enforcing community governing documents with a proven set of processes and techniques. AMG specializes in supporting communities with a broad range of services that can be tailored to individual community needs. Association Management Group, Inc. is a locally Accredited Business by the BBB, as well as a nationally Accredited Association Management Company (AAMC) by the Community Associations Institute. For more about AMG, visit http://www.amgworld.com.

 

 

Photo Cutline: AMG President/CEO Paul K. Mengert

AMG Offers Tips For Community Hurricane Preparedness

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In past years the Carolinas have fallen victim to devastating storms. At AMG we want to help homeowners keep their homes safe and reduce injury from storms. Hurricanes and tropical systems can cause serious damage on both coastal and inland areas. These hazards can come in many forms including: storm surge, heavy rainfall, inland flooding, high winds and tornadoes.

To prepare for these powerful storms, AMG is encouraging families, businesses and individuals to be aware of the potential risks. You should have a community preparedness plan to prepare your home, workplace and community for the storm.  When you live in an area where hurricanes are a risk, planning is essential.

If you live in a community, your neighbors can be a great help in case of an emergency, and you can also be of service to your neighbors. Working together can help keep everyone safe. A community working together during an emergency makes sense. 

Here are some ways you can help neighbors (and they can help you) in case of a hurricane:

1. Get to know your neighbors. Think about people in your neighborhood who may need your help, for example:

·         Older people living by themselves;

·         People with physical or sensory disabilities;

·         People with a chronic illness or with a mental illness;

·         Single parents with young children;

·         Large families; 

·         People newly arrived, including tourists, refugees or immigrants.

·         Talk to your neighbors to identify those who may need assistance

If you are an HOA board member or leader of your community association, you may want to consider a community plan and how to get the information out to the residents.

  • Where to go for community resources
  • How to prep your home, closing and locking hurricane-proof windows, sealing all openings, securing rooftops and yard items
  • Emergency phone numbers

Community associations can get residents involved and working together by holding safety and preparedness events. Use the space in your association newsletter to communicate preparedness information to the residents of the community.

Here is a list of items that might be helpful in the event of a hurricane:      

·         lanterns

·         Batteries (in different sizes!)  

·         Matches 

·         First aid kit

·         Duct tape

·         Rain gear

·         candles

·         battery operated radio      

·         Clock (wind-up or battery-powered)

·         Plastic garbage bags

·         Fire extinguisher

·         Scissors

·         Can Opener

·         Clean clothes

·         Extra blankets

·         Heavy gloves

If your community association becomes aware of impending storms, it is helpful to notify residents of some home preparedness items they can obtain to prepare.

Here is a list to share with the residents of your community:

·         Remove outdoor items

·         Trim dead branches from trees

·         Board up windows

·         Fill gas tanks and extra containers

·         Get extra cash

·         Move furniture away from windows

·         Store important documents in waterproof containers

·         Extra supply of medicines

·         prepare for the needs of pets

Another great way to get your residents involved is holding a canned food drive to collect items to distribute before the big storm arrives.

Here is a list of items residents should have on hand during any emergency:

·         Bottled water (1 gallon/person/day) 

·         Bottled juice

·         Two coolers: 
        One for drinks & one for food               

·         Canned foods

·         Manual can opener

         Dry pet food

          Tweezers

·         Medic-alert tags

·         Insect-repellent sprays

·         Feminine hygiene items

·         Sunscreen

·         Soap

·         First aid kit

·         Prescription medication

          Over-the-counter medication

·         Children's medicine

·         Bandages

·         Adhesive tape

·         Antiseptic solution

·         Thermometer

If you are having an actual emergency please dial 911 immediately. Please be aware and publish all emergency contact numbers.

For more information on how AMG helps serve community associations visit our website at http://www.amgworld.com/Home.

Association Management Group, Inc. to Sponsor Majestic Floor Covering’s Charity Golf Tournament Benefiting Victory Junction Children’s Camp

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AMG to Serve as a Driving Range Sponsor, Donating Funds So Disabled Children Can Attend Camp

“AMG is dedicated to giving back to the communities we manage and to serving the Triad at large.”  - Paul K. Mengert         

GREENSBORO, N.C.-- Association Management Group (AMG), one of the Carolinas’ leading homeowners association management companies, will serve as a Driving Range Sponsor in the 2017 Majestic Floor Covering Premiere Charity Golf Tournament on Oct. 13, 2017 All proceeds for this tournament will benefit Victory Junction, a summer camp for children living with mental, physical and developmental disabilities.

AMG President, Paul K. Mengert, said he was honored to be able to sponsor a portion of the golf tournament, adding to the growing list of philanthropy performed by his community association management company.

 Mengert says, “AMG is dedicated to giving back to the communities we manage and to serving the Triad at large. Our participation in this tournament is just one of the ways in which we do this. I am thrilled that AMG can help children with disabilities attend camp, where they can have fun, enjoy a variety of outdoor activities and meet new friends.”

Victory Junction was founded in 2002 as the brainchild of the late NASCAR driver Adam Petty, whose passion was working with children living with disabilities. Today, Victory Junction serves children ages 6-16 with a wide range of disabilities, providing medically safe and exhilaratingly fun challenges- always at no cost to the children or their families. At this year’s tournament, Majestic Floor Covering hopes to raise $50,000 for Victory Junction, enough to send 20+ children to camp for a week of life-changing experiences.

“We are proud to be working with a great organization like Victory Junction”, said Mike Key, owner of Majestic Floor Covering.  “Those of us with healthy children cannot relate to the challenges faced by parents of children with chronic medical conditions or serious illnesses.  If not for Victory Junction, these children might miss out on many of the activities we take for granted”.

For further information on Victory Junction, visit https://victoryjunction.org/

For more information about AMG’S philanthropy, contact Jpaz@amgworld.com

About Association Management Group: AMG is the Carolinas’ leading professional community Association management company dedicated to building effective, successful community Associations. AMG guides and assists executive boards to help protect the Association's interests, enhance the lives of community members and improve the property values of the community. With offices throughout the Carolinas in Greensboro, Winston-Salem, Charlotte and Raleigh, N.C., as well as Greenville, S.C., AMG is a knowledgeable partner in enforcing community governing documents with a proven set of processes and techniques. AMG specializes in supporting communities with a broad range of services that can be tailored to individual community needs. Association Management Group, Inc. is a locally Accredited Business by the BBB, as well as a nationally Accredited Association Management Company (AAMC) by the Community Associations Institute. For more about AMG, visit http://www.amgworld.com or contact Joselin Paz at Jpaz@amgworld.com

 

Lessons Learned in a Taxi Cab

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It's interesting to consider why some businesses flourish and others decline. Often organizations that experience a decline in sales and lose customer confidence lack a clear understanding of why the business is not flourishing.

I learned an important lesson last weekend when requesting a taxi cab. I seldom use taxi cabs because of the efficient services now provided by such ride-sharing apps as Lyft and Uber. However, this morning I was in a hurry. An Uber or Lyft was five minutes away and there was a taxi waiting at my hotel. Even though I hadn't used a taxi in some time I thought, "They're going to be just as good and they're sitting right in front of me so let's go for it."

This was not a great decision. I began feeling regret as soon as I got into the cab and realized how dirty it was. Heat was coming out of the vents at a strong rate even though it was a warm day. I gave the driver my destination and she said, "Do you know the directions?"

Now it's been quite some time since I was in a taxi. Because the online services immediately know the directions based on the request, I wasn't prepared to supply the address beyond the name of the large conference where I was speaking. "Can you put it in your navigation system based on the name or Google it?" I asked. To my chagrin she responded, "What's Google?" I think this sums up my experience. I'm in a dirty cab, heat is blasting out of the vents even though it’s a hot day, and the driver is clueless about Google.

I quickly put the destination into my iPhone and began to give the driver turn by turn directions.

Now the real fun begins. She's driving like a maniac and there's no seatbelt available. And they wonder why the taxi service industry is in decline.

When we reach my destination there was a credit card machine available so I slid my credit card but no result. The driver exits the cab and comes around to assist me but it still doesn't work. I notice the fare is still increasing, which by the way is approximately double what Lyft or Uber would've charged.  At this point I asked the driver, "Did you stop the fare?" She responds by saying, "Oh, I didn't know I had to do that." After she stopped the fare I processed my credit card. Of course with the experience I'd had I wanted a receipt to make sure I was charged the correct amount. No receipt. The driver explains, "The machine jams a lot of times and won't give us receipts." "Okay."

Trying to make the best of it, I decided it was a great learning experience. If the owners of the taxi cab would take an Uber ride and learn what the competitive services offer, I'm sure they would realize that if they want to compete in today's world they're going to have to step up their technology and customer service.

This is a lesson I try to remember every day at Association Management Group. If we want to be the best, we have to offer not only high-level service, but service that is ever evolving — service that gets better every day. We have to stay on top of technology, offeringour customers more than others and at competitive prices.

Association Management Group Leaders Present $100,000 Check Represents Efforts of 60 Sponsors and 1,200 Runners Working Together To Help Fight Hunger in the Triad

Paul K. Mengert and May Gayle Mengert of AMG Present “Run on the Runway” Fundraiser Check of $100,000 to Hunger-Relief Beneficiaries.

Paul K. Mengert and May Gayle Mengert of AMG Present “Run on the Runway” Fundraiser Check of $100,000 to Hunger-Relief Beneficiaries.

Co-Chairs Association Management Group President/CEO Paul K. Mengert and Vice President, May Gayle Mengert, present hunger-relief charities a $100,000 check raised from the Piedmont-Triad International Airport’s 8th Annual “Run on the Runway” 5K 10K

GREENSBORO, N.C.—On Sept. 14, 2017, Paul and May Gayle Mengert, returning as co-chairs of the 8th annual Piedmont-Triad International Airport (PTI) 5K/10K “Run on the Runway” fundraising event, presented a $100,000 check to help fight hunger in the Triad. The Mengerts’, founders of Association Management Group (AMG), led the effort that included more than 60 sponsors and 1,200 runners.

The $100,000 raised in proceeds will translate to 600,000 meals for those in need across the Triad, and will be donated to the Second Harvest Food Bank of Northwest North Carolina, Greensboro Urban Ministry and Open Door Ministries of High Point. These organizations provide valuable food assistance to Piedmont Triad residents.

“We live in what we strive to make the most advanced country in the world," said Paul Mengert, Co-chair of the event, and President of AMG, “Yet there are families in our own communities who don't have enough food to feed their children. This is why we participate: So that no child in North Carolina has to go to bed hungry”.

In fact, the Inter-Faith Food Shuttle has recently found that North Carolina has the 8th highest rate of food insecurity in the nation, highlighting the necessity of philanthropic efforts on the part of local businesses.

“So few people realize the extent of hunger across our state,” said May Gayle Mengert, Vice President of AMG, “We need to work together to lift one another up and provide nourishment to families in our own backyard. We are so humbled that AMG was able to participate in this event and contribute to ending hunger across the Triad.”

For more information about AMG’S philanthropy, contact Jpaz@amgworld.com

About Association Management Group: AMG is the Carolinas’ leading professional community Association management company dedicated to building effective, successful community Associations. AMG guides and assists executive boards to help protect the Association's interests, enhance the lives of community members and improve the property values of the community. With offices throughout the Carolinas in Greensboro, Winston-Salem, Charlotte and Raleigh, N.C., as well as Greenville, S.C., AMG is a knowledgeable partner in enforcing community governing documents with a proven set of processes and techniques. AMG specializes in supporting communities with a broad range of services that can be tailored to individual community needs. Association Management Group, Inc. is a locally Accredited Business by the BBB, as well as a nationally Accredited Association Management Company (AAMC) by the Community Associations Institute. For more about AMG, visit http://www.amgworld.com or contact Joselin Paz at Jpaz@amgworld.com

 

 

Triad HOA Management Company President Paul K. Mengert to Lead Advanced Community Management Course at the Community Associations Institute

AMG president/CEO Paul Mengert (standing) teaches the 2016 Community Management course to students at the Community Associations Institute.

AMG president/CEO Paul Mengert (standing) teaches the 2016 Community Management course to students at the Community Associations Institute.

On Sept. 7 and 8, Paul K. Mengert, president and CEO of Association Management Group (AMG), the leading Community Management company across the Carolinas, will share his expertise in management, teaching an advanced course at the Community Associations Institute (CAI), in Virginia.

Mengert’s course, CAI-310: Management Company Administration, will help community management professionals apply principles of organizational theory to operate a future community management organization. It will cover such topics as creating and managing budgets, contracting and management ethics.

“My course is designed to prime participants for success, guiding them through the challenges and experiences they will encounter in the community management industry,” Mengert said.

Since 1985, Mengert has taught management classes throughout the Carolinas and the nation. From Elon and Wake Forrest’s law schools, to Harvard Alumni Business School programs at Queens University in Charlotte, NC, Mengert has shared his experiences and knowledge to educate industry professionals.

“I have had the pleasure to work with not only managers, but CEOs of management groups across the country,” Mengert said.

As a long-time faculty member of the Community Associations Institute, Mengert was honored to be asked to contribute another course.

“The Community Association Institute is a leader, nationally and worldwide, in training for community association managers,” Mengert said. “I am proud to have served as a faculty member for more than 20 years. Our mission is to help managers better execute their duties to the communities they work with to increase the property value and experience for members of the communities.”

For more information on the Community Associations Institute visit, https://www.caionline.org/

About Association Management Group: AMG is the Carolinas’ leading professional community Association management company dedicated to building effective, successful community Associations. AMG guides and assists executive boards to help protect the Association's interests, enhance the lives of community members and improve the property values of the community. With offices throughout the Carolinas in Greensboro, Winston-Salem, Charlotte and Raleigh, N.C., as well as Greenville, S.C., AMG is a knowledgeable partner in enforcing community governing documents with a proven set of processes and techniques. AMG specializes in supporting communities with a broad range of services that can be tailored to individual community needs. Association Management Group, Inc. is a locally Accredited Business by the BBB, as well as a nationally Accredited Association Management Company (AAMC) by the Community Associations Institute. For more about AMG, visit https://www.amgworld.com or contact Joselin Paz at Jpaz(at)amgworld(dot)com