Thanks for writing back..great to hear from you!
You are most welcome..my pleasure entirely!
It makes my day to know that my answers have been helpful to you. I do thank you so much for taking the time to express your appreciation with such kind words.
Also, please know I meant every word. I think the foreclosure crisis, which has been just atrocious -- especially in California -- is just lousy.
To answer your additional questions, there are roughly three levels of priority, in the following order:
(1) Homeowner's Liability Insurance: Absolutely number one, and I commend you for realizing the importance thereof. This is all the more important whenever a pool is involved. I'm relieved to hear you're planning to maintain it.
(2) Major ("Hard") Damage: This would include something like structural damage from a busted water hose. I realize this is going to sound onerous, but really you should maintain at least the basic utilities. Obviously I'm not talking telephone and television here, but at least maintaining enough temperature maintenance so the home doesn't truly suffer and result in an insurance coverage denial.
(3) Minor ("Soft) Damage: This is more of a stretch, but I have seen claims of lost opportunity for resale on account of not maintaining the lawn and shrubs. In colder climates, a person in your shoes could risk a citation for not having the walks shoveled when it snows. So, in an ideal world, you would pay to have lawn and yard maintenance performed. But, this is the lowest priority. If you have to sacrifice anything, do it here. And again, by saying so I sure don't mean to imply that you're flush with money, especially during this difficult chapter of your life.
Hope that makes sense...it definitely involves weighing risks versus benefits, pros and cons, and then just doing the best you can to prioritize given your budget.
Hang in there...I truly hope much brighter days await you!