NeighborWorks® of Grays Harbor contributes to the community conversation on housing issues through a weekly column in the Daily World titled "Nailing it Down."


 Since 1999, the "Nailing it Down"articles have been published in the Daily World and other countywide weekly newspapers. NeighborWorks® of Grays Harbor County has collaborated with local newspapers, elected officials and local experts to publish articles covering hundreds of topics.



Nailing It Down

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October 29, 2018

Are you an apartment dweller? Or do you enjoy an occasional stay in a hotel or motel? The theme for the last few blogs has been fire safety at home – but sometimes home is in an apartment and sometimes a hotel or motel becomes your home away from home. Wherever you live – even if it is just for a few days – it’s good to keep fire safety in mind.

Just like living in a typical stick-built house or a manufactured home, if you live in an apartment it’s critical to think through how you can prevent fire and respond to a fire alarm.

Here are some tips for apartment dwellers from the National Fire Protection Association:

  • Know the locations of all exit stairs from your floor. If the nearest one is blocked by fire or smoke, you may need to use another exit.

  • Know where the manual fire alarm boxes are in your building. (These are the alarm boxes on the wall with a pull bar.) Most are found within five feet of an exit door.

  • If there is a fire, pull the manual fire alarm box handle on yo...

October 20, 2018

Did you know that even if they “test” well each month, you should replace each smoke alarm in your home after it is 10 years old? Yes, you could be diligent about adding new batteries and testing your alarms, but after 10 years, the alarms may no longer work properly – even if they test correctly when you push the button!

We wanted to bring that to your attention today, as well as other tips about smoke alarms in your home.

In addition, in the second half of this blog, we will address special fire concerns for those who live in manufactured homes. We have a lot to cover, so let’s get going!


Working smoke alarms save lives in many, many home fires. In fact, about three out of five fire deaths occur in homes with either no smoke alarms or with alarms that are not working.

Here are some safety tips from the National Fire Protection Association:

  • Install smoke alarms in each bedroom. They should also be installed outside each sleeping area and on each level of a home,...

October 14, 2018

Today is the last day of this year’s national Fire Prevention Week.

Sadly, the statistics show that if you have a reported fire in your home nowadays, you are more likely to die than you were in 1980!   We have all got to do what we can to change that trend, starting with our own homes.

Last week we gave some tips from the National Fire Protection Agency on how to prevent home fires dealing with heating appliances. This week we want to spring from there, giving some more detail on fire safety as well as including some basic maintenance tips for you depending on what kind of heating device you use.


While most fireplaces aren’t equipped to truly heat a home, we’re including them because they have important maintenance needs. Also, sometimes they are used as alternative heat sources when the power goes out.

This is the time to examine your chimney. If you haven’t taken a peek at it yet (or hired someone else to) consider checking that off of your To Do list pron...

October 8, 2018

Fire prevention week is Oct. 7-13 this year.

Unfortunately, we in Grays Harbor are all too aware of the destruction of fire. Fresh in our minds and hearts is the devastating blaze June 9 that destroyed the Aberdeen Museum, as well as the offices for Coastal Community Action Program and the Aberdeen Senior Center, all housed in the massive 1922 Armory Building.

And, most of us also remember the nearby destruction of the 1909 Weatherwax building on the Aberdeen High School campus in January of 2002.

The City of Aberdeen also had overwhelming fires in 1887, 1889, and again on Oct. 16, 1903.

Nearby in Seattle, in 1889, a devastating conflagration wiped out the entire business district of that booming young city.


However, it was the Great Chicago that burned on Oct. 8 and Oct. 9 of 1871 that is the inspiration for the annual national weeklong emphasis on fire prevention each October.

In that blaze, more than 250 people were killed, and some 10,000 left homeless as the...

October 2, 2018

The yellow, orange and red leaves are the signal to begin your fall home maintenance chores. This is the season to put away the accoutrements of summer and prepare to hunker down for winter.

Here is an autumn “To Do” list from us here at NeighborWorks of Grays Harbor in Aberdeen to get you started.

  • Check windows and doors for cracked or crumbling caulk. Invest in a 35-year paintable caulk so you don’t have to do this chore again soon. Take a wet finger to smooth the caulk lines.

  • Take the last opportunity of decent weather – if it comes – to scrub mold off your home’s exterior. 

  • Protect under-house or exposed water pipes with pipe sleeves or insulation.

  • Check the dryer’s vent flapper and screen for lint build-up. Does the flapper door work properly? This can be a secret passage for critters!

  • Check all outside lights. With days getting darker earlier, it’s a safety issue to have them in working order. Consider converting to LED lighting.

  • Change the self-cl...

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710 E. Market Street 
Aberdeen, WA 98520

1-866-533-7828 toll-free
360-533-7828 phone 
360-533-7851 fax

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