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Tag Archives: Home Tips

Time to Tidy Up!

Decluttering your home can make you realize how much extra stuff you’ve accumulated, like these bobbleheads Chris found.

Decluttering your home can make you realize how much extra stuff you’ve accumulated, like these bobbleheads Chris found.

I’ve been tidying up my house since mid-January. To be truthful, I didn’t intentionally set out to declutter and reorganize my home. Instead, it was a byproduct of my latest home improvement project. After nine years, it was time to re-paint a bathroom, three bedrooms and all the closets in my house. Every organizer will tell you to completely empty your closets and then edit the things you’re going to put back into them. So, that’s how my tidying got started. Now, I’m continuing to tackle other rooms and even our garage. I’m on a roll!

Popular organizing books suggest only keeping things that you truly love and giving or throwing away everything else. This is easier said than done, but it’s a good starting point. Continue reading “Time to Tidy Up!” »

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How to Get Rid of Ants in the House

How to get rid of ants in the house

Flooded out of their homes, ants seek refuge in ours. Photo: Thrasher Termite & Pest Control, 2016

El Niño has finally arrived in Northern California, and the rains have had disastrous consequences…for ants. According to Janet Thrasher of Thrasher Termite & Pest Control, Inc., when rainwater saturates the earth, it floods ants’ colonies and forces them to seek refuge in nearby dwellings. Consequently, ant-related calls to Diamond Certified pest companies are currently on the rise.

How to Get Rid of Ants
If you need to get rid of ants in your house, there are many different ways to go about it, but the most effective way is to destroy their nest. Continue reading “How to Get Rid of Ants in the House” »

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Posted in Home improvement, Home Tips, Pest Tips, Savvy Tips, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Savvy Consumer Tip: Hiring Licensed Contractors

Do you know how to spot an unlicensed contractor? Watch this video for some helpful tips.

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Choosing Appliances for a Kitchen Remodel

kitchen-remodeling-green

When it comes to kitchen remodeling, one aspect that’s sometimes overlooked is the energy efficiency of kitchen appliances. Photo: MSK Design Build (2015)

When planning to remodel their kitchens, many homeowners focus on improving aspects such as visual aesthetics and functional utility. However, a kitchen remodel also provides a great opportunity to improve energy efficiency, primarily through updating appliances like refrigerators and ovens with new, environmentally-friendly models. By minimizing energy consumption, updating your kitchen appliances will reduce both your carbon footprint and monthly power bills, which is a true win-win situation. Here are some things to look for when selecting new appliances:
Continue reading “Choosing Appliances for a Kitchen Remodel” »

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7 Ways to Save Money on Your Home Remodeling Project

For those working on a limited remodeling budget, there are several ways to cut costs without compromising quality. Photo: Altera Design & Remodeling, Inc. (2015)

For those working with a limited remodeling budget, there are several ways to cut costs without compromising quality. Photo: Altera Design Kitchen & Bath (2015)

It’s a new year, and we at the Diamond Certified Resource are ringing in 2016 by declaring January “Home Makeover Month.” All month long, we’ll be featuring informative articles, videos and tidbits to guide you in pursuing your New Year’s remodeling resolutions.

While many Bay Area residents are preparing to tackle their long-deferred project ideas, for some, the urge to remodel is constrained by the significant expenses involved. However, even if you’re working with a limited budget, there are numerous ways you can cut costs without compromising quality. Here are seven money-saving strategies to consider:

1. Design your project to accommodate existing systems. If your plumbing and electrical systems are in good condition, you can avoid the cost of rerouting pipes or wiring by designing your remodeling project to accommodate them. In addition to saving a substantial amount of money, this strategy aligns with a sustainable approach to remodeling. Continue reading “7 Ways to Save Money on Your Home Remodeling Project” »

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

Tip Sheet: Five Ways to Maintain Your Home’s Exterior

Much emphasis is put on maintaining the interior of the home, but an equally (if not more important) aspect to address is its exterior. That’s why Dennis Thompson of Thompson Construction says homeowners should take proactive steps to protect the outside of their homes from the elements. Here are Dennis’ top five tips for exterior maintenance: Continue reading “Tip Sheet: Five Ways to Maintain Your Home’s Exterior” »

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Savvy Consumer Tip: Firewood Storage

Have a fireplace? Make sure you properly store your firewood to avoid insect infestations and other problems.

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Preparing Your Home for a (Potentially) Wet Winter

With the forecast calling for torrential downpours, now is the time to get your home ready for winter. Photo: Tom Lee Roofing, Inc. (2015)

California residents have spent the last four years enduring one of the worst droughts in state history. However, if recent forecasts are correct, we won’t be suffering for much longer. Citing a strong El Niño climate pattern developing in the Pacific Ocean, climatologists are predicting what could be the wettest winter California has seen in nearly two decades. While it’s uncertain how much rain El Niño will bring, it’s a good idea to be prepared by bolstering your home against the elements. Here are a few critical steps:

To prevent leaks and other moisture-related problems, have your roof professionally inspected every year. Photo: Sure Roofing & Waterproofing (2015)

To prevent leaks and other moisture-related problems, have your roof professionally inspected every year. Photo: Sure Roofing & Waterproofing (2015)

Do you have questions about El Niño? Visit our El Niño Resource Page. 

Schedule a roof inspection. Have a qualified roofer check the condition of your roof and repair any damaged or missing shingles. Likewise, a professional will make sure there’s adequate leak protection in vulnerable spots like skylights, pipes and chimneys. Continue reading “Preparing Your Home for a (Potentially) Wet Winter” »

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Tip Sheet: Five Ways to Prepare Your House for Market

Any successful home sale requires a number of preparatory measures. Photo: The Bower Cole Group (2015)

Any successful home sale involves a number of preparatory measures. Photo: The Bower Cole Group (2015)

It’s no surprise that homes which sell for the highest prices are the most attractive to buyers. That’s why Michelle Carr Crowe, owner of Michelle Carr Crowe and the Get Results Team, says sellers should utilize every available means to boost the appeal of their properties. Read Michelle’s top five tips for getting your home primed for the market. Continue reading “Tip Sheet: Five Ways to Prepare Your House for Market” »

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Cool Tips for a More Efficient Refrigerator

You may not realize it, but your refrigerator might be consuming far more energy than normal. Photo: Earl Farnsworth Express (2015)

You may not realize it, but your refrigerator might be consuming far more energy than normal. Photo: Earl Farnsworth Express (2015)

Most people assume their refrigerators are working fine as long as they don’t notice any obvious problems, but few realize they’re paying far more than necessary to keep their food fresh. The reality is that an inefficient refrigerator can consume up to three times the amount of power used by a properly functioning unit, often without anyone noticing. That’s why it’s a good idea to periodically inspect your refrigerator and address any issues that may be causing energy loss.

The first thing you should check is the condenser coils, which, depending on your refrigerator’s design, will be located on the back or across the bottom front. When these coils are dirty or otherwise obstructed, it inhibits efficient operation and requires the unit to work harder to maintain the desired temperature. In addition to making sure there’s adequate room to facilitate proper air flow, you should clean your coils at least once a year. Continue reading “Cool Tips for a More Efficient Refrigerator” »

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