tree, backyard – z – after removal – IMG_3078 (20110614)

tree, backyard – z – after removal – IMG_3078 (20110614)
Virginia Insurance
Image by Rev. Xanatos Satanicos Bombasticos (ClintJCL)
Oh look! You can see Tim’s deck! (He was an extra in Silence Of The Lambs — see screenshot at www.flickr.com/photos/clintjcl/2698722705/ )

The tree is now removed! This is also a good "before" pic of the unpainted overhang window sills.

Homesite insurance, Progressive insurance, astroturf, birdfeeders, deck, gutter, house maintenance, pine tree, tree removal.
Homesite insurance sucks. Homesite sucks. Progressive insurance sucks. Progressive sucks. after tree removal. before painting.

back yard, Clint and Carolyn’s house, Alexandria, Virginia.

June 14, 2011.

… Read my blog at ClintJCL.wordpress.com
… Read Carolyn’s blog at CarolynCASL.wordpress.com

BACKSTORY: So our homeowners insurance (Farmers) canceled our policy due to having peeling paint on our window sills, and tree branches touching our roof (among other things). So we switched to Progressive and they dropped us for the same reasons. So we renewed our Progressive policy, had 0 of tree work done, and rectified most of the list they gave us. Progressive dropped us a 2nd time for new reasons, including changing the tree requirements from "no branches touching your roof" to "no branches over your roof at all", so even after following their specific advice regarding the trees, they still canceled our policy again. It’s simply not possible to satisfy Progressive when they give different reasons the second time around. Most of the reasons used by Progressive to drop us the 2nd time were never given the 1st time, even though those conditions were present then as well! PROGRESSIVE SUCKS AND IS NOT WORTH IT. INCONSISTENT! And then they try to bill you after you cancel them! Anyway,we paid The Care Of Trees 0 — the cheapest of the 15+ companies I contacted — to do 3 major cuts (0) and remove the pine tree behind our addition (0). I also bought a 0 pole saw (basically chainsaw on the end of a 10 foot pole) to handle the smaller trees (i.e. the cases where it’s possible to do it yourself).

roof view, back – bedroom overhang gutter, soffit before painting, backyard kudzu – IMG_3088 (20110615)

roof view, back – bedroom overhang gutter, soffit before painting, backyard kudzu – IMG_3088 (20110615)
Virginia Insurance
Image by Rev. Xanatos Satanicos Bombasticos (ClintJCL)
See the brown stuff? The detritus of tree branches falling and collecting in this never-before-seen area of our roof. The smell was horrid. I named it "house shit". It was worse than horse shit, but not elephant shit. As I cleaned some out of the gutters, I had to drop it straight down (for life-threatening balancing reasons), where it landed in Carolyn’s hair (repeatedly), her unable to block it with her hands 9for life-threatening balancing reasons). Probably Carolyn’s least favorite part of a lot of this.

These gutters had not been cleaned in YEARS! They totally had trees with root systems growing in them. Nature is fierce around here! Constant zombie attack of life!

You can also see some of the last vestiges of the original green house — the peeling soffit on the overhang roof. (Which got painted later. However, I did not manage to re-paint the soffit of the main roof over the overhang roof (over the attic vent). That was the one place that couldn’t easily be reached. I have never stood on that overhang, nor do I intend to without a harness, nor is my studfinder capable of finding wood *through* my shingles, so I don’t know where to safely screw the hook to the 0 harness that I own. Baby steps.)

Next door, you can see the huge tree that fell during the 2005-ish hurricanes.

Note the condition of the shingles. Progressive insurance (Homesite insurance) dropped our insurance giving us a list of reasons. We fixed the items on that list. They then dropped us a 2nd time for new reasons not included in the first list, including "curling shingles" on my roof. The shingles certainly aren’t perfect, but do these look like something that’s going to fly off my roof and cost an insurance company a lot of money? Of course, we survived Hurricane Irene AND the post-Irene flood storms JUST FINE… With zero water in our house. Progressive did not even cite our roof the first time they dropped us. Quite simply, Progressive Insurance/Homesite insurance are ASSHOLES. The roof sure as hell does not need to be re-done if it is functioning just fine. Plus, I just patched it with roof cement to strengthen it up even more! Be smart. Stay away from Progressive. Their low prices aren’t worth it. The State Corporation Commission has been notified, but since Virginia is a Republican state, our regulatory agencies barely have any teeth.

Homesite insurance, Progressive insurance, attic vent, boiler chimney, gutters, house maintenance, kudzu, shingles, soffit, view.
Homesite insurance sucks. Homesite sucks. Progressive insurance sucks. Progressive sucks. before painting. before soffit painting.

roof, Clint and Carolyn’s house, Alexandria, Virginia.

June 15, 2011.

… Read my blog at ClintJCL.wordpress.com
… Read Carolyn’s blog at CarolynCASL.wordpress.com

tree, backyard – 0 – before removal – 023-diptych-033 (20110524)

tree, backyard – 0 – before removal – 023-diptych-033 (20110524)
Virginia Insurance
Image by Rev. Xanatos Satanicos Bombasticos (ClintJCL)
The tree (photographed from both sides) that cost us 0 to remove. It’s pretty much 100% covered in ivy. We left it there to prevent erosion.

On the right half of the picture, you can see some old astroturf that I placed on the chain-link fence past to kill kudzu by depriving it of sunlight. It’s extremely effort-efficient, but not time-efficient. It takes a few weeks to kill what’s beneath it. But as you can see from the picture, it does in fact work. Left in one place long enough, however, new kudzu will eventually grow *through* the astroturf and lock it in place, where it can’t be removed and eventually rots away. The trick seems to be to surprise existing kudzu by covering it — THAT kudzu will die, but not the wave that comes to replace it. We got maybe 3 of these astroturfs for each about 11 yrs ago, and I think one remains. May switch to discarded carpets (on curbs every summer) as they are thicker and more durable and harder to grow through. Shit, I’d carpet my whole yard if it was possible to do that, and made sense. You know, if I lived in a cartoon world. Black shag carpet for my whole yard. Yes!

Homesite insurance, Progressive insurance, astroturf, gutter, house maintenance, pine tree, tree removal.
Homesite insurance sucks. Homesite sucks. Progressive insurance sucks. Progressive sucks. before tree removal. diptych.

back yard, Clint and Carolyn’s house, Alexandria, Virginia.

May 24, 2011.

… Read my blog at ClintJCL.wordpress.com
… Read Carolyn’s blog at CarolynCASL.wordpress.com

BACKSTORY: So our homeowners insurance (Farmers) canceled our policy due to having peeling paint on our window sills, and tree branches touching our roof (among other things). So we switched to Progressive and they dropped us for the same reasons. So we renewed our Progressive policy, had 0 of tree work done, and rectified most of the list they gave us. Progressive dropped us a 2nd time for new reasons, including changing the tree requirements from "no branches touching your roof" to "no branches over your roof at all", so even after following their specific advice regarding the trees, they still canceled our policy again. It’s simply not possible to satisfy Progressive when they give different reasons the second time around. Most of the reasons used by Progressive to drop us the 2nd time were never given the 1st time, even though those conditions were present then as well! PROGRESSIVE SUCKS AND IS NOT WORTH IT. INCONSISTENT! And then they try to bill you after you cancel them! Anyway, we paid The Care Of Trees 0 — the cheapest of the 15+ companies I contacted — to do 3 major cuts (0) and remove the pine tree behind our addition (0). I also bought a 0 pole saw (basically chainsaw on the end of a 10 foot pole) to handle the smaller trees (i.e. the cases where it’s possible to do it yourself).