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Consumer Information Resources

We have compiled the following list of links that we think you may find useful. Whether you are currently a homeowner, contemplating a purchase, researching communities, addressing safety issues or planning a home project, there's something for you within these pages.

These links are provided as a courtesy, for your convenience. While we have tried to ensure that information published in these sites is accurate, we cannot be responsible for the accuracy or content of any information published in these other sites.

Note: Each link will open in a separate window (you may need to disable pop-up blockers for this page).

Homeland Security / Office of Emergency Management
Link Description
The home page for the US Consumer Product Safety Commission
Harris County Office of Homeland Security Emergency Management
Montgomery County Office of Emergency Management
Fort Bend County Office of Emergency Management
US Consumer Product Safety Commission & Related
Link Description
The home page for the US Consumer Product Safety Commission
A "one stop shop" for U.S. Government recalls.
CPSC warning regarding brass flexible gas appliance connectors.
Special safety alert concerning chimneys used with woodburning stoves and fireplaces
Safety alert concerning fires in chimneys used with woodburning stoves, fireplaces and inserts.
CPSC estimates that in the five year period from 1999 through 2003, clothes dryers were associated with 55,000 fires. This document provide guidance on how you can reduce the potential for these fires.
Recall to Repair Instant Hot Water Dispensers sold under various brand names, including In-Sink- Erator®, ISE®, Steamin' Hot®, Emerson®, Dayton™, ACE™, Kenmore® and Kohler™.
CPSC, Andersen Corporation, of Bayport, Minn., is voluntarily recalling for in-home repair tilt latches on about 400,000 windows
Environmental Protection Agency
Link Description
US Environmental Protection Agency home page
Single point of access to select U.S. EPA environmental data. This website provides access to several EPA databases covering air, water and land across the US.
Retrieve environmental information about your community.
Department of Housing and Urban Development
Link Description
U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development home page.
HUD recommendation: Why a Buyer Needs a Home Inspection.
100 Questions & Answers About Buying A New Home
HUD has compiled a glossary of mortgage terms
Compilation of HUD articles and guides for first time homebuyers.
Educational Resources
Link Description
The Real Estate Center at Texas A&M University is the nation's largest publicly funded organization devoted to real estate research
Texas Real Estate Commission
Link Description
Texas Real Estate Commission home page.
Texas Standards Of Practice governing Inspectors
Look-up license information for Brokers, Salespersons and Inspectors.
A Guide for Buyers and Sellers of Real Estate in Texas
Houston Association of Realtors
Link Description
Houston Association of Realtors home page
Search not only for new home, but research schools, neighborhoods, recent sales, golf courses, etc.
Find an agent, inspector or other affiliate member
A broad assortment of tools to assist in researching and buying a home in the Houston area
County Appraisal District Information
Link Description
On-line records, maps, forms, etc for properties within the Harris County Appraisal District.
On-line records, maps, forms, etc for properties within the Montgomery Central Appraisal District.
On-line records, maps, forms, etc for properties within the Brazoria County Appraisal District.
On-line records, maps, forms, etc for properties within the Galveston Central Appraisal District.
On-line records, maps, forms, etc for properties within the Galveston Central Appraisal District.
On-line records, maps, forms, etc for properties within the Waller County Appraisal District.
Historical and Statistical Information about Texas and Houston
Link Description
Houston City/Community Information.
Online encyclopedia comprising more than 23,000 articles on people, places, events, history, institutions, and a host of other topic categories.
Statistics and facts for nearly every Texas city or town.
Your gateway to the US 2000 census data.
Maps On-line
Link Description
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Combines Google Search with satellite imagery, maps, terrain and 3D buildings  Requires a free software download from the folks a Google.
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stuff
Aerial photographs of your community.
Aerial photographs and Topo-maps of your community.
Virtually "Fly" over the entire earth (bandwidth intensive).
Real-time traffic maps.
Generate and save, print or email Topo-maps.
Flooding
Link Description
Official site of the National Flood Insurance Program.
View FEMA Maps Online.
Help homeowners locate and obtain copies of their flood maps.
FEMA Flood Insurance Program main page. f
Generate an online hazard map your area of interest. stuff
FEMA Flood Insurance Rate Map (FIRM). Provided by the Tropical Storm Allison Recovery Project (TSARP)
Including Harris, Fort Bend and Montgomery counties.
Radon
Link Description
US Environmental Protection Agency radon main page.
EPA map displays radon potential by county.
National Safety Council's Radon portal page.
Asbestos
Link Description
US Consumer Products Safety Commission publication.
US Environmental Protection Agency Asbestos home page.
Carbon Monoxide
Link Description
National Center for Environmental Health carbon monoxide resource page.
US Consumer Product Safety Commission carbon monoxide questions and answers.
Take this multi-media carbon monoxide awareness quiz.
Commercial CO information site.
Consumer Product Safety Commission vent pipe corrective action program to Prevent CO Poisonings.
Mold
Link Description
NYC Department of Health document.
NYC Department of Health document.
US Center for Disease Control and Prevention Mold resource pages with fact sheets and guidelines on cleanup and remediation.
A non-commercial site with an extensive collection of mold elated articles.
US Environmental Protection Agency general mold information guide.
US Environmental Protection Agency article.
US Environmental Protection Agency downloadable guide "Flood Cleanup and the Air In Your Home".
WA State Division of Environmental Health article - include clean-up guidelines.
The title says it all.
Lead Paint
Link Description
Texas Department of State Health Services library of downloadable document (English & Spanish).
EPA & HUD lead paint disclosure rule. Section 1018 of Title X.
US Environmental Protection Agency lead poisoning prevention home page.
US Department of Housing and Urban Development lead poisoning prevention home page.
National Safety Council lead page.
Overhead Garage Door and Garage Door Opener Safet
Link Description
Consumer Product Safety Commission identifies hazards related to garage doors that do not reverse and provides important testing and safety advice.
Safety guide published by the International Garage Door Association.
A garage door is the largest moving object in the home. here are several safety guidelines to help prevent accidents.
Important safety tips for garage doors equipped with automatic openers.
Important safety tips for all garage doors.
Advice on testing and maintaining garage doors and openers.
Gate Opener Safety
Link Description
Safety guide published by the Door and Access Systems Manufacturers Association.
Important safety advice for automatic gate openers.
Federal Pacific Stab-lok Electrical Panels
Link Description
Federal Pacific Stab Lok Electric Panels
Excellent article identifying man of the issues associated with federal Pacific panels by Doug Hansen.
Home Improvement and Maintenance
Link Description
Loads of home improvement and how-to information. Excellent forums where you can get expert advice for your toughest questions.
Browse HomeRenovationsCenter.com to find articles and tutorials on home repair, improvement and renovations. Check out our thorough directory on any home renovation topic you can think of.
Home improvement retailer
Home improvement retailer
Source of How-to info from the TV show.
Website for Today's Homeowner with Danny Lipford TV show
Great site to learn about how your home and lots of other stuff works.
Don Vandervort's HomeTips site.
Has some great home repair and improvement articles written by women.
Energy Conservation
Link Description
Site operated by he DOE with numerous tips, information and resources for conserving energy.
Link to the federal Energy Star home page.
Excellent site sponsored by the Department Of Energy and the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. Includes a detailed energy calculator for estimating energy costs and targeting savings opportunities.
Construction
Link Description
Windstorm Inspection Program by the Texas Department of Insurance.
This is the state organization charged with providing Texas homeowners and the residential construction industry an opportunity to resolve differences. 
Texas Residential Construction Commission document that details, in plain language, warrantees and performance standards for new home construction.