Diamond Certified Blog

Tag Archives: consumer tips

Missing Money: How to Find and Claim It

Did you know the State of California is currently holding $8 billion in unclaimed funds in the names of more than 30 million individuals and organizations? I was one of them until a few weeks ago, when I went searching for missing money. The law requires companies to turn over funds after three years or more if there hasn’t been any activity or contact with the rightful owner.

What motivated me was my sister-in-law posting on Facebook about her successes tracking down unclaimed funds in a variety of states where she and her husband have lived over the past 30 years. Continue reading “Missing Money: How to Find and Claim It” »

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Posted in Consumers, Personal Stories, Savvy Tips, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , ,

The 2017 Diamond Certified Directory is Coming!

The 2017 Diamond Certified Directory is in the final stages of production, which means printing is just around the corner! More than 800,000 copies of the Directory will be sent to homes and businesses throughout the Greater Bay Area. Each Diamond Certified company is presented with a full-page profile that includes:

  • Contact information (address, phone number, website, email)
  • Services and service areas
  • Business profile and philosophy
  • Verbatim survey responses from real, verified customers
  • In-depth ratings information, including customer loyalty and customer satisfaction rankings
  • Legal information (insurance coverage, California business license)

Continue reading “The 2017 Diamond Certified Directory is Coming!” »

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Posted in Consumer News, Consumers, Diamond Certified News | Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Savvy Consumer Tip: Dealing with Mold in a Closet

Do you suspect you have mold in your closets? Watch this video to learn what to do.

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Posted in Home Tips | Tags: , , , , ,

Is Saying “Thank You” a Lost and Underappreciated Art?

I’ve been saying “thank you” a lot lately and it feels good. After my last flight on Southwest Airlines, I stopped to tell the pilot and attendants how much I appreciated their attentiveness and on-time performance. I wrote a thank-you email to my Diamond Certified tree company in December because the crew did an excellent job pruning my large trees. When I had trouble resolving a problem with my health insurance company, a staff member kept communicating with me even though it took a few weeks to untangle. Afterward, I asked for her supervisor’s name so I could write a complimentary letter for her personnel file. The last time I was in the grocery store, I told the cashier and bagger how much I love shopping there because of their smiles, quality produce, and service. Continue reading “Is Saying “Thank You” a Lost and Underappreciated Art?” »

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Savvy Consumer Tip: Cleaning Stainless Steel Appliances

Watch this video to learn a simple way to keep your stainless steel appliances clean.

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Dealing with Foundation Problems

Abrew Repair and Construction recognized that this fireplace mantel was a warning sign that the home’s foundation was uneven.

Recently, I spoke to a homeowner who hired a contractor to demolish and re-build a chimney, as well as repair cracks to stucco and drywall. That contractor abandoned the job. The homeowner then hired a Diamond Certified company to patch cracks in the stucco and reinstall the mantel, which the homeowner had removed from around the fireplace.

What went wrong?
When the incoming contractor remounted the fireplace mantel, it looked crooked. The contractor explained that the problem wasn’t the mantel—the house was uneven. This explanation was not received well. Continue reading “Dealing with Foundation Problems” »

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Posted in Consumers, Home improvement, Home Tips | Tags: , , , , ,

Avoid Plumbing Emergencies over the Holidaze

Take care of plumbing maintenance before you open your home to holiday guests. Photo: Drain Doctor, Inc., 2016

I vividly remember one Christmas Eve when toilet water backed up into my shower and flooded the entire bathroom floor and laundry room. Our many houseguests were taking showers every day and both toilets were being flushed more than usual. What we didn’t know (until it was too late) was that our main sewer line was clogged with tree roots. With extra stress on an already compromised drainage system, it was a recipe for disaster. Since that expensive and embarrassing emergency, I’ve had a professional clean my drains every year to make sure the roots are cut and the water has an easy path to the main line. I haven’t had this problem since. Continue reading “Avoid Plumbing Emergencies over the Holidaze” »

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Posted in Consumers, Savvy Tips | Tags: , , , , , , ,

Keeping Your Dogs Safe over the Holidays

I’ll never forget the time I was walking my dog the day after Thanksgiving and she got into a neighbor’s garbage bag that was full of turkey bones. First she started chomping and then she started choking. Luckily, the mail carrier was passing by and knew exactly what to do: the Heimlich maneuver. The partially chewed and splintered bones popped right out. We avoided an emergency trip to the veterinary hospital on a holiday weekend.antioch-dog

According to Dr. Howard Schutzman, owner of Antioch Veterinary Hospital, a Diamond Certified practice, we were fortunate. “The main problem with bones, especially turkey bones and chicken bones, is they splinter easily,” he explains. Continue reading “Keeping Your Dogs Safe over the Holidays” »

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Savvy Consumer Tip: Fall Maintenance Checklist

Watch this video to compare your Fall home maintenance “to do” list with Chris Bjorklund’s.

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Tapping into the Diamond Certified Experts: Kids and Keys


It’s tempting to give teething babies keys to soothe their gums, but keys are covered in lubricants and other dangerous chemicals that are harmful if consumed. Photo: American Ratings Corporation, 2016

In my role as the Savvy Consumer for the Diamond Certified Resource, I get many opportunities to tap into the expertise of Diamond Certified company owners. I interview them for radio spots for KNBR, KSFO and KGO, as well as for consumer tips that are published in Bay Area newspapers. Some of them are featured in this monthly newsletter. These experts have deep knowledge of their industries and have taught me many things, from how to improve my gas mileage to how to prevent water leaks in my bathroom.

Recently, I came across an interesting tip that deserves attention. Katelyn Radtke, operations manager of Foothill Locksmiths, Inc., has a warning about the potential hazards of letting teething children play with house keys and car keys. Continue reading “Tapping into the Diamond Certified Experts: Kids and Keys” »

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