Pet Sitting Recommendations

A request for input from a neighbor:

I noticed some cards in the mail room advertising Lickity Split Pet Care and I am wondering if anyone in the building uses this service and what their experience has been. 
Alternatively, I am looking for a cat-sitter, so taking recommendations! Thanks!

Common Area Etiquette

Every so often someone discards their trash in one of the planters on the 2nd, 4th, and 6th floors. Assuming this is mostly guests who don’t want to appear at their hosts’ door and greet them with: “Can you toss my trash for me?”, perhaps we should all find an opportunity to mention to the people in our lives who might be visiting how annoying it is when folks use the planters as trash cans—bringing that straw wrapper or empty cup to our door for proper disposal is preferable.

And if it isn’t visitors doing it, please consider that dropping trash around the building is disrespectful to your neighbors and adds to everyone’s maintenance expenses.

One other reminder: The situation in the mailroom has improved enormously with the new fob system and the end of the holiday season. Nonetheless, it’s a good idea to keep track of your packages and pick them up in a timely fashion—it doesn’t take long for the numbers to build up and make a mess. I’m always surprised at how long some packages sit untouched after someone took the time and money to order something.

Local Vaccine Clinic

The following info just got forwarded to me. This location is an easy walk from our building.

The City of Lowell will be hosting its third mobile COVID-19 vaccine clinic on Monday, April 26 from 12:00 PM – 6:00 PM at the UMass Lowell Inn & Conference Center, located at 50 Warren Street. Moderna vaccine will be administered at this clinic.

Residents seeking a vaccination at the mobile site must make an appointment in advance. Appointments can be reserved online at: lowellma.gov/mobilevax, or by phone at: 978-228-3019. All Lowell residents age 18+ are eligible to make an appointment. This site is strictly limited to Lowell residents.

Suggestions Wanted for Condo Manual

It’s been suggested in the past that we put together a homeowners manual for the building full of tips and tricks and info gleaned from longtime residents (and a few professionals)—sort of a how-to guide for residents, particularly newcomers. We have an owner actively working on the project and looking for suggestions as to what should be included. Below are some of the topics he’s been considering covering.

  • Where is the trash chute?  How to get rid of bulky items such as mattresses, carpet, etc.
  • How to plan ahead for deliveries.
  • How to cut down on smoke odors entering your unit.
  • What to do when you discover buried electrical wires in your walls.
  • How to find a contractor who knows the building.
  • What to do when water enters your apartment.
  • Pest control
  • What kinds of water heaters have been used in the building?
  • How to maintain your heat pumps.
  • How to comfortably heat or cool your apartment.
  • How to contact management and how best to get your issue resolved.

Input is welcome in the comments section. He’d particularly like to chat with new residents to see what questions or obstacles they had to overcome when they first arrived. If you’d be interested in sharing your thoughts beyond just posting a comment, please shoot me an e-mail and I’ll forward it to him so he can get in touch.

Request for Remodeling Advice

From a resident: Hi neighbors,
I’m interested in expanding the interior balcony/loft area on the second floor of my unit to add a bit of extra floor space. Is this something any of you have done recently? I’m interested in contractor recommendations, and any tips folks have about embarking on this kind of renovation.
Thanks!

From the admin: People can also use the bulletin board search function to look for remodeling ideas, although any contractor recommendations may be out of date. Here’s one old post on the subject.

Quiet Hours & “This is NOT an official Website” Disclaimer

This has been a challenging year with so many people spending so much time at home, and it seems worth reminding people that our condo documents do specify “quiet hours.”

“Owners, guests and tenants are expected to reduce noise levels between the hours of 10:00 PM and 7:00 AM, so neighbors are not disturbed. At no time are musical instruments, radios or televisions to be so loud as to become a nuisance.”

Sound transfer in this building tends to be more of an up-down problem than a side-to-side one, and some activities can be an issue that one might not expect. Midnight is not the time to start vacuuming or to be pacing extra laps around the living room. Anything happening on the living room floor late in the evening is happening over the heads of people trying to sleep below.

A little consideration goes a long way. Please try to be responsive to any neighbor concerns, or even proactive if something special is going on. We had an upstairs neighbor offer us his contact info when he had construction going on, and a downstairs neighbor we’d never met once slipped an invite to a party under our door so that we could be part of the fun if things got noisy (pre-pandemic, of course).

The flip side is to have reasonable expectations. This is a large building in the middle of a city. My husband and I run a fan of some type year round in our bedroom—either a humidifier, a box fan, or an air purifier—which masks the ka-thunk of our heat pump cycling on and off as well as most street or building noise.

And a disclaimer/reminder: This website is run by a volunteer and is not an official website, although said volunteer is reimbursed for expenses. I mention this fact in a post periodically and it’s in the footer on every other page of the site. Posts here represent my own (reasonably informed) opinion; I do NOT speak for the Board or the Management.

Amazon Scam

There is a scam going around where you will receive an e-mail from the address of someone you know saying their Amazon account is having issues and would you please send a gift card on their behalf. DON’T DO IT. I was fooled because the e-mail address was correct (and from a neighbor in the building) and the story was believable but Amazon caught it and cancelled the order after speaking with me. So beware!

Board Meeting Wednesday

There will be a Board meeting Wednesday evening, March 24th, at 7:00 via Zoom. There should be an e-mail going out from the management with the link before then. [Update: an e-mail with the link went out late Monday. If you haven’t received it, please check your spam folder.]

One of the topics at the meeting will be a pair of amendments to the condo rules that are expected to be coming up for a vote at this year’s annual meeting. The more significant of the two, and one that’s been under discussion for years, is a proposed no smoking amendment which can be read here.

If you’d like to hear more about the amendments, and discuss their benefits and implementation, please consider attending Wednesday’s meeting.

Below Zero Wind Chill Tonight

Just a heads up that, despite the mild temps today, it’s supposed to drop way down tonight with significant winds and wind chills below zero. If your unit happens to be one with pipes near an exterior surface and thus vulnerable to freezing, you might want to nudge your heat up in advance of the temperature drop as a precaution.

With so many people staying home so much these days, it’s easy to stop paying attention to what’s happening weather-wise.