Local Business Reporting
Just the facts here, ma'am
I don’t read any news any more. I left metropolis to come work at Clute because small businesses matter. From real estate to breweries, small businesses drive the whole world. Also Clark was getting obnoxious.Louis Lane
Couples never plan for the end because it feels like setting an expiration date. The only issue with this kind of thinking is that planning involves honest input from both parties where an exit only takes the withdrawal of one side of the bridge. When that spanned gap comes crashing down, life savings, businesses, homes, and families can come crashing down with it. Enter the seemingly impossible role of the mediator. In this analogy think of a mediator as a cross between Atticus Finch and Batman. Part consoling but fair legal expert and part covert ninja that saves the day by shedding light on the unflattering parts of life. A mediator’s role is to represent both sides of the life altering conflict to come to a mutually agreeable and ultimately healing solution. Sound impossible? Practically every couple that ends in court seems to think the same thing. Skepticism is not unwarranted as successful mediation is not a difference in paperwork or a 3 step panacea. Successful mediation requires a truly talented divorce mediator.
This week’s featured business does just that. With the divorce rate on the climb from big cities like Metropolis all the way to little embankments like Smallville and Sanborne County, the need is met with a variety of solutions and none are graceful or amicable like this family law mediation firm. Take for example how ugly a divorce can get between court appearances, family and friend personal testimonies and public recounting of embarrassing issues. Want your gambling problem or extra-marital affair to become public record? The mixed martial arts arena of divorce court is glad to make that public record. As they say, what happens in Vegas stays in divorce court. Consider the alternative of private mediation. In divorce mediation, all proceedings take place in the privacy of an office and remain strictly confidential. What’s more the division of assets doesn’t become 50/50 split – between the husband’s lawyers and the wife’s lawyers. Typical mediation costs 1/10th the price of divorce court.
The obvious benefits don’t ring through unless the mediation is a success though. There is a wide chasm between what some mediators would call a success and what success means to this certified family law mediation attorney. Couples are baffled by the outcome that they walk away from a divorce feeling heard, relieved and even optimistic about the future. That takes a talented attorney and mediator to navigate the most challenging life event many couples ever have to face and reposition it as a new beginning.
Her rave reviews speak volumes about what she does but more than that, they speak to the level of gratitude her clients feel toward her that they would publicly share their experience with a divorce attorney. Stand outside the doors of a divorce court sometime and you will find yourself dodging daggers being stared at the opposing parties. There’s nothing “5 stars” about the experience. While no divorce is going to be pleasant, the best a couple can possibly hope for is to be mutually represented by a family law mediator that cares about the well-being of both parties and the success of the family unit. We at the clute institute are proud to report that in the otherwise bleak world of marriage dissolution – there is a beacon of reconciliation and balance in mediation.
Small business owners tend to rely on a ‘bark louder than bite’ mentality when it comes to security, placing alarm system placards and large fake security cameras around their facilities in an attempt to dissuade crime. Preemption is always the first line of defense – and it should be. Shop owners #1 concern always is and always should be the safety of their staff but what happens when every store and business in town has the same crime deterrents in the windows? They become invisible. The next line of defense is sound security planning.
As the old adage goes, failing to plan is planning to fail. The same is true in security for knowing where and how big a business’ security liabilities are. An office building may not be at the same risk of armed robbery as a convenience store, however parking structures and stairwells are still points of potential risk. Small businesses fail to consider dangers to their staff until an accident happens. A solid plan goes a long way in this front.
The final and most reliable form of security preparation is personal safety training. The confidence that comes from safely and knowledgeably carrying a legal firearm is unparalleled. Unfortunately, firearm training is not a requirement for gun ownership in the US, but the statistics of gun-related accidents fall precipitously with an increase in educated, responsible ownership. A Concealed Carry Weapons License entitles a gun owner to carry their weapon in a vehicle, bag, or on their person out of the site of the general public (subject to limitations). As a final level of protection, a CCW permit requires an in-depth training course and an application with the local county sheriff’s office. These regulations ensure that CCW holders are safe and effective gun owners with a real need and the tested capability to handle a weapon.
Simply applying for a Conceal Carry Weapons permit does not guarantee the applicant a permit. An experienced CCW training program will help walk individuals through the application process and certify them for the permit. The best CCW training classes prepare students for their permitting process, but more importantly for the logistical safety requirements of being a responsibly armed citizen. Practical shooting training and evaluation are key components of the certification process. The top local CCW 1-day certification program is offered just outside Orange County at a a full-service training and shooting range at Artifex Firearms training center.
Here are some of their most recent reviews online:
I recently took two courses with Ben and Daniel, and the training is as good as it gets. They focus on each individual although it was a group class. It was very helpful. i took quite a few different firearm training courses but they were the best. They are the real guys with the real experience. Very friendly and professional. And the price is very competitive as well. Way to go!
-Daniel L, via Yelp
Excellent firearms training! I took the CCW class with Daniel and was very impressed by his coaching and attitude. I had taken firearms training elsewhere and never had anyone comment on my pistol grip-I just assumed it was fine. Daniel noticed a deficiency in my grip immediately and after correcting it, I felt much more in control of my firearm.
-Chuck B, via Yelp
Check out this month’s featured local business
Artifex Firearms Training
Address: 26741 Portola Pkwy, Foothill Ranch, CA 92610
Phone: (949) 861-0693
They say no man is an island – life requires interaction but the question stands if businesses can be islands as well? Surely Richard Branson’s private island counts as an exception to the rule but what does a reclusive business suffer the same harms as a hermit? Does a highly engaged business revel in the same rewards as a social butterfly? To answer these questions, we must first ask how engagement starts.
Given an hour, a savvy reader could find enough blog content to choke a unicorn about the importance and value of branding. But the display of said branding is the only useful mechanism to yield value. It doesn’t matter how many custom visors, billboards, frisbees, and fish tanks a business can design if that branding never reaches a desired audience. Getting the right branding to the right audience is arguably more important than perfect branding. Ever hear the phrase ‘shipped is better than perfect’? That means it’s better to be AT the trade show talking about your business even if you haven’t settled on the perfect 3 syllable slogan than it is to be missing the potential business in another ‘creative strategy’ meeting. Obviously, crafting a beautiful business image is important but when the event finally rolls around, ready or not, a business name is either present and impactful or invisible.
The time is come and the trade show is here. There’s no moving the event so you have two choices, take massive action with the absolute best display at the event or duck out and try again next year when you are more ‘ready.’ The successful business chooses the former. So you’ve leaned into the new logo, slogan and imagery, how does that branding gain traction? Visibility is king. Trade shows are all about the impact. Are you well-lit, broad reaching, and approachable? Sitting behind a table with a stack of flyers isn’t going to cut it when your competition has a custom backdrop, custom branded table covering, LED lighting, giveaway games, beautiful booth girls and an epic display.
Operating from an invisible corner booth without a bit of signage is just about as good as invisible. We at the Clute Institute like to reward small businesses that aim for the stars and chew up satellites on their way through the atmosphere. This is why we stopped by Los Angeles’ Largest Mixer and had to stop and admire this booth. Everything from the swag to the backdrops (which covertly doubled as pricing catalogs #clever) to the floormat, we couldn’t stop thinking about that question of a business being an island. In that analogy, we met the company passing out lifeboats – they literally have a free branded banner promotion running at the moment.
So it rings true for businesses as it does for men – no one is an island. Outreach and personal connection is key and the first step to that interaction is attention. Making a statement and displaying all that you have to offer is the first step in making a lasting impression.
By the way, here’s the business we were mentioning from the LA Mixer
Everyone loves a great from rags to riches story. Anyone with any semblance of an entrepreneurial spirit appreciates hearing the life cycle of a successful business that started at zero and became a huge success. Probably the most popular story of this kind out there is Facebook. One guy who wrote a couple hundred pages of code that led to the creation of one of the most successful and widely used online businesses in history. So awesome and dramatic that a movie was made to make sure we all new the story. Well I’m here to tell you of a similar story. Perhaps not one that is so drastic or dramatic but definitely worthy of note here where we love to highlight local businesses when they succeed at their craft.
Oh how that beautiful red nectar of the grape flows. Well not nectar technically. The wonderful people over at Four Brix Winery are doing some amazing things with wine grapes. What started as a side project in a garage has turned into a full blown business that is thriving. This boutique winery takes grapes from all over Paso Robles and Napa and creatives these wonderful blends of red and white wines that the gods themselves would sip upon. If you are ever driving through Ventura, wine tasting is definitely a must. Stop by the Four Brix Winery tasting room and meet the lovely people that work there. The last time I went, I really felt that I got to try some delicious wine but also make some really good friends. I honestly can’t wait to have a reason to drive back up that way again! I would definitely put them at the top as having the best wine in Ventura.
So as they have continued to grow, they have made the smart decision to reinvest in their business. For any small business owner reading this out there, you need to do more of this! Four Brix has been able to expand their selection of wine as well as their facilities. Ever wanted to host an private event in a winery’s barrel room? Four Brix has made this a reality! After their last expansion, their barrel room can hold up to 160 people! That is enough for a beautiful wedding venue in Ventura! Some of the photos are simply magical. Take a look for yourself!
As we always do here at the Clute, we encourage you to check out anyone we suggest for yourself! Four Brix Winery is killing it online. I haven’t been the only person who had such a wonderful experience with these fine folks. They are well reviewed for a good reason. It really is nice to see that good people can get rewarded with more than just a pat on the back. My suggestion, let the wonderful people at Four Brix host your next event. You will be well taken care of. Check them out on Yelp as one of the best venues to host your next event.
From a garage to hosting large events in their barrel room, Four Brix is a great rags to riches story for any entrepreneur.
The character Atticus Finch inspires generations of aspiring attorneys to stand up for the defenseless and uphold the law by protecting the innocent. In recent decades the insurance industry has boomed off the press received by a few fringe cases. ‘Surgery gone wrong’ ‘Real Estate Scams’ ‘Negligent nurses’ or ‘Corrupt CPAs’ sure make for catchy headlines, regardless of their rarity. These tabloid-type stories smearing the licensed professional labor force have only fueled the climb in malpractice and professional liability insurance premiums. Fortunately the generation of Atticus-inspired attorneys continues to grow, defending hyper-scrutinized professions from predatory bureaus, boards and licensing bodies.
As the Bureau of Labor statistics, only 17.6% of the American population hold licenses or professional certifications. This means that a very narrow sect of the population are performing some of the most highly-skilled, technical work in the country. Keeping these professionals in business is key to the success and mobility of the middle class into higher paying positions – not to mention the jobs created by these licensed individuals. With this in mind, it is the mission of occupational license lawyers to keep the doors open for highly-skilled professionals.
When interviewed about the practices of the various governing bodies that control the majority of licenses and certificates in the state of California, one local law firm expressed serious concern at the severity of the terms and conditions typically set down on the license holder. The value of litigating this experience is that a competent legal team can often get these restrictions reduced or eliminated entirely. When the ultimate goal is to keep doctors,, realtors, accountants, and nurses in business helping the community. Minor infractions should not stand in the way of local economies.
The truth is, with quality representation and a good case, we can achieve great results, sometimes even better than the best that the board is willing to offer. In some of our cases, we recommend settlement, and it’s only through our intervention that the board is even willing to offer a settlement. The only way to know for sure is to consult with an attorney who regularly appears at administrative hearings at the Office of Administrative Hearings. Don’t be pressured into giving up a license or into taking a settlement offer without first talking to an experienced professional license defense attorney.
Of course a license or state certification comes with a degree of responsibility and liability that should be held to the ethical standards of the profession. It is in pursuit of justice and legal righteousness that the Atticus Finch generation represent their clients. According to licensing bureaus, professional integrity must be maintained by a piece of paper. It is the role of the license defense lawyer to keep professionals from falling victim to the bureaucratic penal system. Like Atticus Finch famously said, “Our courts have their faults as does any human institution, but in this country our courts are the great levelers, and in our courts all men are created equal.” It is therefore paramount that the professional field seek quality legal representation when the deck is stacked against them by the administrative powers that be. Fate smiles on the hero that defends the disadvantaged.
There are a million and one ways to kill bugs. You can squish them with your foot or a finger which is normally protected by too much toilet paper. You can kill them with a wide variety of chemicals like 409, any Raid aerosol can of poison or a competitors equivalent, in some cases water…flush, and the all time go-to Windex that seems to kill way too many bugs given that its purpose it to clean windows and glass. Some could say that all of these ways of getting rid of bugs in the house is “Fighting the Good Fight”. Keep at it! Don’t let the visible bug population get out of control. Be the big bad exterminator of the house to keep the children safe and the women from screaming. But what about the invisible fight?
The invisible fight you say?! How do you fight something invisible?!
Alright my mistake. The fight in question here is perhaps better described as a hidden fight. While most personal exterminators are killing the occasional spider, roach, silverfish, or fly around the house, other bugs lurk about in the shadows. Some are harmless creatures looking for some free shelter and hope for food close by while others can do a great deal of damage. Have you guessed it yet? What are we fighting that’s hidden?! TERMITES! These sneaky devils travel in packs…big ones, which is why no one ever calls it a pack of termites. They come in swarms! With things heating up around this time of year in Garden Grove, termite extermination becomes a hot topic. Lucky for us, there is a business that specializes in “Fighting the Good Hidden Fight” that us at home bug squishing exterminators can’t handle. Natural Science Exterminating finds where these swarms dwell and eradicates them with ease. The best part, they do it all naturally and organically! You don’t have to worry about poisoning your pets with all those chemicals or turning your children a different shade of color. Look for the signs that termites may be in your home. If you see one or two dead termites lying around, chances are you have a swarm hidden away in your home. If this is the case, you better act fast Garden Grove. Termite damage is no joke and can cost thousands of dollars to repair.
So, when there is a hidden fight that you can’t seem to find but know its there, call Natural Science Exterminating. They will do the fighting for you to make sure your pets, your home, and your family stay safe from poison and the pests the plague your home. If this article isn’t enough validation, check them out on Yelp!
When you become convinced that these guys are the way to go, call them or map em! DO NOT WAIT to get a termite inspection! Spend the small amount of money up front so you don’t spend thousands later. Let these guys do what they do best, natural termite extermination.
The hardest thing to understand is where everything goes. It’s virtually impossible to truly know what someone wants, what their intentions are, and why they do whatever it is they end up doing. Fortunately, answers to these questions can be attained if you the proper steps are taken. Death is inevitable. No one is getting out of this life alive. While some people live simple lives until their eventual death, others live very complicated lives that leave a lot of questions to be answered when they eventually check out. So how do you answer these questions? You start with finding an estate litigation attorney that has the know how.
First question: What does someone truly want? Well you could ask them and hope for an honest answer. In this particular instance, you can’t ask them because they are dead, gone from this reality. The most significant degree of separation has taken place so what can you do? You can hope the recently deceased had a trusted attorney that specialized in estate litigation and probate administration. With these kind of attorneys in place, they can sit with those with something to leave behind and get exactly their wishes in complete confidence. No biases from the kids or grand kids. No siblings buttering them up in hopes of getting more at the time of their death. It really can be a nasty situation if you aren’t careful. Have these probate attorneys in place so when death comes knocking, the mourning that follows isn’t riddled with strife and family conflict.
Second question: What are their intentions? This answer can only really be found if the first question has been answered. If all that’s left after someone leaves this place is strict legal instructions of who gets what, you should have enough information to answer this question. Ideally, you would have talked to this person before their death and would have some idea as to what they were leaving you and why. Unfortunately, people don’t normally sit in this situation. People grow distant in their dying years. The other ideal situation would be if the probate attorney had enough time to get close to the recently departed and could convey the recently departed intentions. Kudos to that estate litigation attorney for being so on point. To circle back around to the first point, if the will is in order, you can try and glean what the recently deceased may have intended for you based on what they left you. Just hope that first question is answered with that probate administration attorney or no one will know any answer in a time of change and mourning.
Last question: Why people do whatever they end of doing? This question is easy to answer in this situation. They died. Why? Because they were old, sick, in pain, depressed, whatever. I guess the best way to find the true answer is have a great doctor that determines the cause of death. Now if someone caused their death, that is a whole other can of worms that can be opened at a later date. And normally in those circumstances, no one has the time to sit and plan where everything goes before their death.
Do yourself a favor, if you know the end is near, look up a well reviewed probate attorney, estate litigator, or probate administrator in Irvine and get planing. Yelp is a great place to start if you are looking in southern California. Word has it that probate attorneys in Irvine are they way to go. Get on it! Don’t wait before the inevitable happens.
In the early half of the 20th century, law suits were rare matters reserved for civil fallout stemming from criminal wrongdoing. Sure the most cut-throat corporate titans were no strangers to the court room when battling anti-trust laws and fledgling copyright standards of the day but nothing like the legal power-lifting of the 21st century. Increased incidence of malpractice lead to greater oversight in the medical field which is a natural progressive step in the industry. The issue however, arises from the oversight that paints targets on the backs of the literal ‘first-line-of-defense’ that is the medical industry. Without question, insurance companies duck, dip, and dive around the bullets that fly at their professional constituents. When the days end and doors close (except those of the ER of course) the lawyers and claims adjusters are typically the only ones with smiles on their faces.
There is one sect of the legal field however that steps aside from the cesspool of garbage that is consuming the very people that save more lives than most every first responder combined. The top causes of death all combined are primarily combated by medical professionals. While oversight is important, medical licensing is highly problematic these days. Nurses, physicians, surgeons etc are constantly watching their back. The one band of brothers available to these life-guards are professional license attorneys. License attorneys keep medical professionals in practice help doctors keep the hospital rolling. Not all professional license lawyers are created equal when representing clients in front of medical boards and regulatory bureaus.
License lawyers have a broad scope of ability for defending medical licenses including:
- helping license applicants to disclose and explain adverse background informationon an application
- responding to licensing agency investigation letters
- handling board investigations that become criminal investigations
- addressing licensed business state law compliance issues
- appealing the denial of any California professional license
- preventing immediate suspension of a license in criminal court under Penal Code section 23
- defending against interim suspension orders (ISOs)
- filing a Notice of Defense in response to an Accusation
- negotiations with the Attorney General or Department Counsel
- representation at administrative hearings
- reconsideration after an adverse decision
- writs and appeals after an adverse decision
- petition for reinstatement after the loss of a license
- handling problems that arise during license probation
- early termination of probation
- modification of the terms of probation
- defending criminal charges in court that arise from a license discipline investigation
Think of licensing attorneys as a defensive line holding back the blitz of aggression coming down from sue-happy patients and malpractice insurance agents. Bottom feeders exist everywhere but with impending administration boards they tend to teem together in higher numbers and it takes a strong defense force to keep them at bay. Where doctors and lawyers are typically pitted against eachother like cats and dogs everywhere including the golf course, license defense is one of few areas of professional handshake.
With a tremendous record of success appealing licenses, defending licenses, and board hearing defense, Ray and Bishop Professional Law Corporation is the support licensed professionals need. Check them out and remember to be grateful for the system that keeps us safe but more so the people that dedicate themselves to saving lives and the ones keeping them working.
What does curb appeal really mean anymore? Certainly it starts with “Oh wow” and solidified by unidenfied, subconsious details a potential buyer picks up on a property. Things like lawn manicuring, window framing, roof angle. None of these things are inherently ‘nice’ or even expensive yet they make almost all the difference in a market where everything is 3500 square feet with 4 bedrooms and 5 bathrooms. Home appraisers are supposed to be objective and formulaic in how they assign dollar values but humans by nature are not objective or formulaic. Put an appraiser in a stunning spanish villa with marble, teak and sconces everywhere – but make it smell like rotten produce – and you bet your value is going down the tubes.
All that in mind, the only thing you can’t change about a house are it’s physical location, so make that decision definitive and buy the cheapest piece of garbage you can get with the word ‘upgrade’ in mind. Don’t believe me? Look up the statistics of home values located within walking distance of a cinnabon and you will be floored by what you find. Buy the zip code, the local shops/bars/schools, and the proximity to freeways. Everything else is subject to change. People down in south county value their living based on extremely arbitrary details. For example, would you ever expect a single bridge to make or break the value of a community?
LAGUNA NIGUEL – A bridge that delivers a popular shortcut between Aliso Viejo and Laguna Niguel will remain open to one way traffic for at least the next 45 days despite an announcement last week that it could be shut.
Officials with the South Orange County Wastewater Authority, which possesses the AWMA Bridge, said March 10 that it would shut the bridge because of concerns about its stability.
The bridge joins Alicia Parkway in Laguna Niguel to the Laguna Niguel position centre of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Aliso and Wood Canyons Wilderness Park and Aliso Viejo’s Wood Canyon neighborhood (including Wood Canyon Elementary and Community Roots Academy).
SOCWA is looking to provide the bridge to the county along with $1 million to rebuild it. However, the Board of Supervisors chosen to not make a choice on the suggestion of the bureau, and closed door discussions on Wednesday didn’t afford a selection on bridge’s future.
In a last ditch effort to maintain the bridge open, the county and SOCWA agreed Friday to keep the bridge open until May 5 to enable property negotiations to continue. No date has been set for the next discussion meeting.
“SOCWA will continue to finance the security at the bridge to monitor the safe use,” said General Manager Betty Burnett. “However, that is not a long-term option, and when the Bridge Plan or another mutually satisfactory arrangement isn’t reached in the additional dialogue period, then the bridge will have to be closed.”
A 2010 SOCWA assessment discovered that the bridge was becoming less stable over time. In 2014, the county pegged the expense of replacing the bridge at $3.8 million.
Since March 2015, the bridge has been restricted to one-way traffic into Aliso Viejo, and bridge access has been limited by a SOCWA guard to one car at a time.
Pretty crazy how much home value is assigned to its surroundings isn’t it?
Fortunately for Laguna Niguel and Aliso Viejo new home buyers, the communities hold their value regardless of details like bridges and cinnamon roll bakeries. Take the In n Out from Auburn and you’re left with a wasteland. But Laguna Niguel without the tiny bridge is just slightly less desirable. I’m sure the residents can comfort themselves by looking around at the endless restaurants, art galleries, palm trees and rolling green hills.
Take a look at the two places mentioned above
Here are a couple more homes for sale in Laguna Niguel
This one is a great bargain and prime for a fixup and resale at 4 times the value
Happy home hunting and remember where real value originates: between the left and right ear. Buy the location, not the home.