renee roberts, real estate, seattle, graphic design, marketing for realtors WREN graphics Archives - Renee Roberts

How Do I Find Out If There’s an Abandoned Oil Tank on my Property?

Natural gas heat was starting to become the most popular type of heating system for homes in the Seattle area starting in 1964. Older homes in our more established neighborhoods may still use oil heat, but many more have converted to natural gas or electric heat in the meantime. What happened to all those old oil tanks?

How do I determine if there is an oil tank on a property, and whether or not it has been decommissioned?

This is not an uncommon question to answer as a Realtor when a home is sold and transferred to a new homeowner. To determine if an oil tank is on a property – or if it has been decommissioned, the first step is to contact the local Fire Marshal’s Office.

The Fire Department does not have records of the location of underground heating oil tanks, because a Fire Department permit is not required to install underground heating oil tanks. However, the Permit Section staff in the Fire Marshal’s Office for the City of Seattle, can check for any record of the removal or decommissioning of an oil tank at your address conducted under permit after 1997 for residential properties; and after 1984 for commercial properties.

The City of Seattle is now processing public disclosure requests through a web portal called the City of Seattle Public Records Request Center (PRRC). The PRRC is designed to assist you in organizing and tracking the progress of your request(s) and downloading records.

With the transition to the PRRC, the City will be charging minimal fees for copying and transmitting electronic and non-electronic records in accordance with state law. Submit your request(s) into the PRRC website and the City will communicate with you through the PRRC going forward. All communications sent via the PRRC will appear in your email and can be tracked through your PRRC account. You will receive an email with your login information and additional instructions regarding your current request for records.

Most decommissioning reports have only been in place for the past 15 years, so if it was done earlier, a Seattle Fire Department permit was not required to remove or decommission an underground tank.

Other cities are similar in this method of investigation, so depending on where you live, you’ll want to contact the fire department responsible – whether in city limits or with the County if you live in an unincorporated area.

If you need to investigate the possibility of an abandoned oil tank further, most oil tank companies offer locating services if you are unsure if – or where an underground storage tank is buried on the property.

Posted on April 10, 2017 at 4:13 pm
Renee Roberts | Category: Home Buyer, Seattle Neighborhoods, WREN graphics

Unexpected Car Insurance Perk

I’m usually good for a half dozen good dork moves a year when it comes to my car. “60056 Tow Truck” by Brickset is licensed under CC BY 2.0

Usually, it’s leaving my lights on and running down my car battery. For some reason, my car doesn’t chime at me when I leave my lights on, and is old enough that it doesn’t have the auto-off lights feature. One of the best gifts I ever received was a portable emergency jump box that can start a battery, charge your phone or pump up a flat tire. As long as I remember to charge that puppy up once a month or so, (and remember to put it back in my trunk), I can get myself out of a jam.

Then, there’s running out of gas. I’ve been rescued more than a few times by friends and AAA for misjudging how far one can go after seeing the little yellow gas can appear on the dash. That, and my gauge is fairly unreliable – I’ve had the fuel sensor in the tank replaced, but not the one in the dash. So I pay careful attention to my trip meter & make sure I fill up at 250 miles.

Today was a new dork move for me.  I locked my keys in the car – along with my phone and purse while pumping gas at the station. No phone = no way to phone a friend. No AAA phone number or membership number. Had I even renewed it recently? I wouldn’t have a had access to my purse to immediately sign up with my credit card!

However, last time I renewed my car insurance with Safeco, I received a little sticker for their Roadside Assistance program. I don’t think I even realized this was an option with my policy until I saw the little sticker with my renewal card! Thankfully, I stuck it on my windshield.

The station attendant let me borrow his phone and I called the number. In less than 1/2 hour, a friendly towing co. guy showed up with a little funny blood pressure balloon device to get enough space to insert another funny little device to flip open the lock. No fuss, no muss, no money. Just my signature on his iPhone app and I was back on my way!

Does your car insurance plan include roadside assistance? I know I am so grateful for this perk included with my Safeco policy!! So, until I replace my car with one that will turn my lights off for me and has a more reliable gas gauge, I will remember to utilize the Roadside Assistance part of my insurance policy when necessary!

 

 

“60056 Tow Truck” by Brickset is licensed under CC BY 2.0

Posted on March 1, 2017 at 3:26 pm
Renee Roberts | Category: Uncategorized, WREN graphics | Tagged , , ,

I’m Not Just My Day Job

I am not just my day job. I don’t always sit in front of a computer creating logos, flyers and editing photo galleries for real estate. I don’t always show houses to clients, arrange for home and sewer scope inspections or coordinate paperwork with lenders, escrow and title companies for real estate transactions. In my free time, I am a creative. I paint… I draw… I carve rocks!

NWSSA booth at the Flower & Garden Show

So, I’m playing hooky from my day job today! (Thursday, February 23, 2017) I will be spending the day hosting the Northwest Stone Sculptor’s Association (NWSSA) booth at The NW Flower & Garden Show. This event is aways amazing… There are hundreds of garden displays, seminars and vendors to peruse.

The NWSSA is a group that I love – amazingly gifted artists who share my passion for carving rocks. I’m currently their “virtual assistant” helping out with design, marketing, website updates & cultivating social media.

So if you happen to be at the Flower & Garden Show at the Convention Center in Downtown Seattle, stop by booth #2502. I’ll be there Thursday & Friday afternoon, however, I encourage you to stop by, consider making a sculpture the focal point of your garden or pick up a chisel & hammer and chip away at our demo sculpture in progress!

For more information, visit Garden Show

Posted on February 23, 2017 at 1:36 pm
Renee Roberts | Category: Seattle Events, Uncategorized, WREN graphics | Tagged , ,

Happy Valentine’s Day

Psyche Awakened by Eros (1787-93) Marble, Louvre. By Antonio Canova

 

Many of you who’ve worked with me know that my passion is art. I studied art history, I paint, I draw, I carve rocks. The above stone sculpture is one of my favorites. Here’s the mythology behind these two lovely figures of Cupid/Eros and Psyche.  – renée

 

There were once a king and queen who had three very beautiful daughters. Psyche, the youngest and most beautiful, was treated like a goddess by the local people.

Jealous and infuriated, Venus, goddess of Beauty, ordered her son Cupid to avenge her by making Psyche enamored of the lowest of all human beings. But Cupid fell hopelessly in love with the mortal girl. Psyche’s father, in despair at seeing his daughter unmarried despite her beauty, consulted the oracle of Miletus. The oracle predicted terrible disasters if the girl were not abandoned at once on a rock, where a monster would carry her off.

Alone and trembling on the rock, Psyche suddenly felt the caress of a light breeze: this signaled the coming of Zephyr, the gentle west wind. He bore her away to a marble palace covered with precious stones, which would now be her home.

Each night a mysterious visitor came to Psyche’s room and made love to her. But he forbade her to try to see his face.

Psyche, curious to see her lover’s face, lit her oil lamp one night as he slept and saw that he was none other than the god of Love. But a drop of burning oil suddenly woke him; and feeling betrayed, he fled.

Desperate, Psyche set out in search of her lost love. Venus inflicted terrible ordeals on her, leading her from the Underworld to Olympus. For the last of these ordeals, Venus sent Psyche to Proserpina, goddess of the Underworld, ordering her to bring back a flask she should open under no circumstances. But Psyche was curious, and opened the flask. Inhaling the vapors, she fell into a deathly sleep. Cupid revived her by touching her with his arrow. Moved by such devotion, the gods finally granted Cupid Psyche’s hand. They gave her nectar and ambrosia, and this made her immortal. They then consecrated her goddess of the Soul.

Posted on February 14, 2017 at 4:47 pm
Renee Roberts | Category: Uncategorized, WREN graphics | Tagged , ,

Price of Forever Stamps Increases Sunday!

For the first time since January 2014, the price of US Postage stamps is going to increase. This means you’ll be paying two cents more for a First-Class Mail Forever stamp, which is currently 47 cents. The price changes will take effect on Sunday, January 22nd, 2017.
The price change does not include Postcards, letters being mailed to international destinations or for additional ounces for letters.

The First-Class Mail prices for these products are:

  CURRENT NEW
Letters (1 oz.) 47 cents 49 cents
Letters additional ounces 21 cents 21 cents
Letters to all international destinations                 $1.15                 $1.15
Postcards 34 cents 34 cents

 

Pricing for Standard (Bulk) Mail, Periodicals, Package Services and Extra Services will also be adjusted

For more information about postage rates, visit: www.usps.com

 

 

Posted on January 20, 2017 at 6:38 pm
Renee Roberts | Category: Mailing Services, Uncategorized, WREN graphics | Tagged , ,

Happy New Year!

sm2016newyear

Renee and Wren Graphics look forward to asssting you with your real estate needs and business development throughout 2016!

Posted on January 1, 2016 at 1:12 am
Renee Roberts | Category: Productivity, Uncategorized, WREN graphics

Need Assistance with your 2016 Calendar Mailings?

Need Assistance with Your 2016 Calendar Mailings?

The clock has fallen back, the election is over and holiday gift catalogues are arriving in the mail each day… that means the new year is nearly upon us and it's time to mail your calendars!

If you need assistance in preparing your calendars for bulk mail, I'm here to help. From creating decorative labels that match your holiday stationary, to stuffing, sealing and then bundling & hauling them away to the bulk mail acceptance unit at the post office, WREN graphics is available to assist with your calendar mailings again this year.

Calendar Mailing Services & Pricing  

If you are planning to prepare all – or just part of your mailings, following are just a few tips that will ease the process:

  • All mail pieces must be identical in weight & content. No personal notes or cards are allowed, however, a computer generated holiday greeting letter is fine.
  • Zip code sort your list before printing your labels. The post office requires FLAT mailings (anything over 3.3 oz.) be zip code sorted & bundled. Having your list printed in zip code order saves a lot of time in this process!
  • Your Return Address is required.
  • Move Update/Address Service is required. In a previous blog post, I have outlined the methods available to use.
  • When labeling your envelopes – place the address label in the lower right hand quadrant of the envelope.
  • If WREN graphics will be mailing your calendars for you, place your envelopes in zip code order from lowest to highest. No sticky notes or dividers are necessary. Then contact Renee 206-395-9736 or email: wrengraphics@gmail.com  to let me know they're ready to be picked up or drop them off at the Windermere Greenwood office!
  • I prepare a calendar mailing at least once per week. If you have less than 50 lbs./200 pcs. I will need to merge your calendars with another mailing of identical size and weight, so this matching may take a few additional days.

If you have any questions, please call or email. I look forward to assisting you!

Renee  206-395-9736  wrengraphics@gmail.com

Posted on November 5, 2015 at 6:38 pm
Renee Roberts | Category: Mailing Services, Productivity, Uncategorized, WREN graphics | Tagged , , , , ,

Was Your Oil Tank Decommissioned?

<<Updated April 2017>>

 

The average year built of homes sold in Seattle during the 1st Quarter of 2015 was 1964 –  Just as natural gas heat was starting to become the most popular type of heating system for homes in the Seattle area. But what about older homes in our more established neighborhoods? Many are still using oil heat, but many more have since converted to gas or electric heat. What happened to all those old oil tanks?  

 

How do I determine if there is an oil tank on a property, and whether or not it has been decommissioned?

This is not an uncommon question to answer as a Realtor when a home is sold and transferred to a new homeowner. To determine if an oil tank is on a property – or if it has been decommissioned, the first step is to contact the local Fire Marshal’s Office.

The Fire Department does not have records of the location of underground heating oil tanks, because a Fire Department permit is not required to install underground heating oil tanks.  However, the Permit Section staff in the Fire Marshal’s Office for the City of Seattle, can check for any record of the removal or decommissioning of an oil tank at your address conducted under permit after 1997 for residential properties; and after 1984 for commercial properties. 

Email your request to sfd_fmo_pdr@seattle.gov   Include the property address and a fax number if you’d prefer to receive the report by fax. They’ll research permits on file and respond within 5 days. (I’ve usually heard back within 24-48 hours.)

Most decommissioning reports have only been in place for the past 15 years, so if it was done earlier, a Seattle Fire Department permit was not required to remove or decommission an underground tank.

Other cities are similar in this method of investigation, so depending on where you live, you’ll want to contact the fire department responsible – whether in city limits or the County if you live in an unincorporated area. 

If you need to investigate the possibility of an abandoned oil tank further, most oil tank companies offer locating services if you are unsure if – or where an underground storage tank is buried on the property.

 

 

Posted on May 19, 2015 at 2:26 pm
Renee Roberts | Category: Seattle Neighborhoods, Uncategorized, WREN graphics | Tagged , ,

Happy New Year!!

 

Renee and Wren Graphics looks forward to asssting you with your real estate needs

and business development throughout 2015!

Posted on December 31, 2014 at 3:43 pm
Renee Roberts | Category: Productivity, Uncategorized, WREN graphics | Tagged

Holiday Greeting Tips

As the year is drawing to a close, many of you are planning to send holiday greetings inserted into your calendar mailings. I’ve heard many of you are feeling a little stumped on where to begin. 

I’ve gathered these short messages below as examples. Adapt them to suit your recipient, your relationship, and your culture.

Holiday Season &  Happy New Year Messages.

As the year ends, we think about all we are grateful for. Our relationship with you is one thing we treasure. Thank you for the opportunity to serve you. We wish you a merry Christmas and much success in the New Year.

Wishing you a joyful heart, a happy home and many new reasons for thanks.

At this joyous time of year, we are grateful for our work with you. We wish you abundance, happiness, and peace in a new year filled with hope. Happy holidays!

Thank you for giving me the opportunity to work with you this year. It has been an honor and a valuable experience for me. I wish you a happy Hanukkah/Christmas and a new year filled with all good things.

It has been an honour and a pleasure to work with you this year. I wish you the best of holidays and a prosperous 2015!

As gifts are given and received this holiday season, I think of the gift of knowing you. Thank you for the pleasure of working with you. Happy holidays!

Merry Christmas! I hope you have a holiday that fills your heart with joy!

Seasons’ Greetings! We have come full circle for another year.  In the holiday rush, I like to take a moment to count the many blessings that have come my way. Please accept the enclosed calendar as my gift to you with warmest wishes for a very happy new year.

I wish you a wonderful new year filled with abundance, joy, and treasured moments. May 2015 be your best year yet!

The gift of love, the gift of peace The gift of happiness… May these be yours this Holiday Season

Thank you for your business this year. It has been a pleasure helping you reach your goals, and we look forward to contributing to your success in 2015. We wish you a prosperous and happy new year!

My year would not be complete without a word of appreciation to you.  Thank you for all you’ve done to help my business grow.

Many thanks for your referrals to me of friends and family throughout the year.  Your continued confidence is the highest compliment I can receive from a past client. I hope you have a wonderful holiday season and a fabulous year 2015!

Wishing you the Joy of Family, the Happiness of Friends, and the Wonder of the Holiday Season

Decorative Holiday Mailing Labels[/caption]

A few more tips:

  • When sending calendars through “bulk mail”, all mail must be identical in weight and content. Individually personalized handwritten greetings are not allowed – mail to these clients with 1st Class postage.
  • Whenever possible, sign your greetings rather than using a typed signature.  I can even scan your signature!
  • I do have a selection of holiday paper and graphics to make your greeting stand out!
  • I can help you create custom mailing labels to match your holiday stationary.
  • Contact wrengraphics when you're ready to mail your calendars!

 

Posted on December 9, 2014 at 11:35 am
Renee Roberts | Category: WREN graphics | Tagged , , ,