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The Diamond Certified® Consumer Report Twitter link Facebook link
 VOL. 6, ISSUE 4 - APRIL 2013

In This Issue

The Joy of Making Things Last

Diamond Certified Preferred Consumer Card

Warmer Weather Contractor Scams

Consumer Feedback:
J & D Painting

New Diamond Certified

Savvy Tips of the Month

How to Avoid a Phony Check Scheme

Adding Groundcover to Your Landscape

Supercharge Your Credit Score

Diamond Certified Quick Links






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The Joy of Making Things Last

Chris’ 2010 World Series jacket: Made as good as new by a $20 repair

Have you ever experienced the thrill of getting something fixed to make it last longer? When the zipper on my beloved 2010 World Series jacket broke, I thought I would have to buy the new (but not as nice) 2012 version to replace it. Instead, I took the time to inquire about the cost of repairing it. For about $20, my old jacket was as good as new, and I plan to get many more years of wear out of it.

I had the same problem with an old suitcase. Every part of the bag was in good condition, except for one of the compartment’s zippers. Even though it took some time to find a repair shop, the repair only cost $28—far less than the price of a new bag. It gave me great satisfaction to know I’d be getting many more years of value out of something I already owned.

Another way to make things last and save money is by paying attention to the regular maintenance of household appliances. I just had my 26-year-old furnace cleaned and its filters changed. The Diamond Certified technician who serviced it assured me we could get another three to five years of life out of the unit with regular cleanings.

Whether it’s regularly maintaining your car, having your carpet professionally cleaned every 6 to 18 months, clearing out your clothes dryer’s air duct once a year, or just rotating your mattress, I suggest you try repairs and replenishment instead of replacement. It’s good for the environment, local service providers and your pocketbook.

Chris Bjorklund signature
Chris BjorklundChris Bjorklund
The Savvy Consumer


Diamond Certified Preferred Consumer Card

Diamond Certified® Preferred Customer Card

Have you signed up to become a Diamond Certified Preferred Consumer? Membership is always free and comes with numerous benefits, including a special member hotline, members-only access to additional tools on, a double Diamond Certified Performance Guarantee and more. Join now to get a free copy of the brand-new 2013 Diamond Certified Directory! Visit to get started.


Warmer Weather Contractor Scams

To avoid scams like the one mentioned in this article, be sure to use a Diamond Certified company. Here’s some recent landscaping work performed by Quilici Gardening, a Diamond Certified company located in Santa Cruz.

As the weather warms up in the Bay Area, you can expect to see an increase in door-to-door home improvement scams. According to the Contractors State License Board, fraudulent home repair workers (often from out of town) peddle phony roof repairs, driveway asphalting, or tree trimming/landscaping services.

A common landscaping scam involves a roving crew that completes a beautiful garden at one of the homes in a neighborhood. The neighbors are so impressed that they pay cash deposits for jobs scheduled in a few weeks’ time, and the fraudulent operators leave town with the money without completing the work. Be wary if any of these transient solicitors claim to have leftover materials, seem reluctant to sign a written contract, demand payment in cash, drive brand-new trucks with out-of-state license plates, or only use a toll-free number as a contact. You can report suspicious operators to


Kudos from Diamond Certified Consumers

Subject: This note was sent to J & D Painting after the completion of a job.

Dear Harold,

There are simply not enough positive adjectives to describe how pleased we are with the results of your hard work. All your crew members were professional, efficient, courteous and always with a smile. And thank you for handling the last minute changes we requested.
—R & L (San Ramon)


Diamond Certified ® Only companies rated Highest in Quality earn Diamond Certified

Companies Recently Earning Diamond Certified

hometelligent inc.

Martinez - (925) 257-4430

MARIN county
Millsap, Degnan & Associates, Inc.
San Rafael - (415) 534-5497
Mr. Arbor
San Rafael - (415) 878-3187

Abbey Carpets Unlimited

Napa - (707) 584-6666

Matthew Scott Construction
Napa - (707) 584-6668

san francisco
Classic Shades Painting Co.
San Francisco - (415) 529-6958

Stanley Steemer
San Francisco - (415) 523-7797

All About Parking
San Carlos - (650) 248-2918

20 / 20 Optometry of Silicon Valley

San Jose - (408) 990-3626

Accurate Pool Care
Los Altos - (650) 515-3295

Avi Urban Residential & Investment Real Estate (Keller Williams Palo Alto)
Palo Alto - (650) 741-0237

Jeffrey Pratt - Sereno Group
San Jose - (408) 990-3323

Trusted Van Lines
San Jose - (408) 512-3473

Westside Family Vision Center & Saratoga Vision Optometric Group
San Jose - (408) 758-5679

Baycrest Construction
Vallejo - (707) 207-4625

The Legacy Paver Group
Santa Rosa - (415) 886-2903

Redwood Residential Fence Company
Cloverdale - (707) 219-6014

American Ratings Corporation - Diamond Certified • 504 Redwood Blvd. • Suite 210 Novato, California 94947 • (877) 312-1307
©2013 American Ratings Corporation  

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