Taking Care of Your Basement and Your Finances

pioneer (13)Unhappy customers are always more than willing to post a bad comment on a company’s Facebook page, or a bad review someplace else.  They have reason sometimes, but if you are doing a project where signing contracts is involved, doing research about the company and the products you are buying pays off. Those unhappy customers are unhappy for a reason, and although their comments may be exaggerated, maybe there is a grain of truth there. The BBB is an excellent place to check a business credibility, and although you should not inherently trust the BBB, that’s a good place to start. Trust your instincts as well if you believe there is something not quite truthful about the salesperson sales pitch, it is your money after all. Take care of it!

Analyzing basement cracks, shifts

In the last couple of articles we have been discussing what I see and what you see when looking at the same area or item in a house. We have referred to this as “double vision.”

In the past articles, we have spent time looking at the exterior of the house, the property, the garage and attic.

Today, lets go down into the basement and see if we still experience “double vision” here.

I always look forward to going down into the basement because usually it tells me more about the house than any other area. If the basement is finished off into a living space, it is more difficult to observe the systems, but on the other hand it tells us about the past owner’s mentality as it relates to making improvements. Finished basements typically are done by someone other than the original builder, often show semi-professional workmanship and they have shortcomings and issues.

In most cases, however, the basement is unfinished, but often it is full of boxes, tools, exercise equipment and old furnishings. Many people enter this area, grab their forehead and say, “Where do I start?” Well, let me give you a tip on how to get started.

Judge criticizes Green contractor convicted of bilking elderly Copley couple

A judge blasted a Green man convicted of white-collar crime after he attempted to hide his face from a newspaper photographer during his sentencing hearing on Wednesday.

“You’re a convicted felon,” Summit County Common Pleas Judge Mary Margaret Rowlands reminded Allan Vertucci, 41, who in January was found guilty by a jury of bilking an elderly Copley Township woman and her now-deceased husband out of $80,000.

Rowlands said Vertucci’s response to a Beacon Journal photographer snapping pictures showed he had no remorse for the couple or their ordeal, which left them bankrupt.

“This is a case devoid of one iota of remorse. I understand Mr. Vertucci maintains his innocence, and that’s his right, but to not even express sadness,” Rowlands said. “Mr. Vertucci is sitting here like he’s angry at the world.”

Rowlands was scheduled to sentence Vertucci on Wednesday. She also would have imposed restitution so the elderly woman could be repaid the money taken from her.

Ways to spot and stop basement water problems

Water damage. Until they’ve experienced it, homeowners tend not to keep it top of mind.

But it’s something everyone should be looking for in the basement of their home – or a home they’re thinking of purchasing.


If left unchecked, water can cause significant damage to the foundation, as well as harmful mold buildup.

As a result, it pays to know the signs that water is infiltrating a basement and how to remediate it.

“There are a few telltale signs I look for when I enter a basement,” said Bob Cunliffe, a basement waterproofing contractor who owns Basement Medics in New Hope, Pa., with his son Ryan. “The first is freshly painted walls.”

“There isn’t necessarily anything wrong with painted walls, but it could be a way to cover up a problem,” he said.

Next, he said he looks for stains on walls or a white powdery substance on block walls called efflorescence. The powder is mineral deposits and a sign that water is pushing its way through the block – or once did.

Lastly, Cunliffe said to be on the lookout for cracking.



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