Posts by Chris Bjorklund

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Seven Summer Scams

Posted on July 25, 2017 by Chris Bjorklund

Along with rising temperatures this summer, we’re going to see a rise in seasonal scams. I’ve been getting warnings from consumer protection agencies about what to watch out for, and I want to pass them on to you. You may have heard of some of these rip-offs before, but be aware that new variations always pop up and can catch even the savviest consumers off guard.

1. Magazine scams
This scam ramps up in the summer with young people going door-to-door selling magazine subscriptions. They claim they’re working their way through college and need to make a certain number of sales to earn points for scholarships. That’s not true. Most of the time, Read more

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Posted in: Consumers, Savvy Tips
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Savvy Consumer Tip: Preparing for a Road Trip

Posted on July 07, 2017 by Chris Bjorklund

Headed out on a road trip this summer? Watch this video for some tips on how to prepare your car for a long drive. Read more

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Posted in: Auto Tips, Savvy Tips
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What’s Worth Splurging On?

Posted on June 27, 2017 by Chris Bjorklund

I’ll be the first to admit that I really like getting good deals and saving money, but like most of you, I also like to splurge on some things. Sometimes I find that saving money can actually mean spending more on a quality product that will last a long time. For example, during a kitchen remodel, I bought a faucet that was on sale and it failed in the first year. The second faucet I purchased was three times more expensive, and so far it has lasted seven years. I’m so happy that I decided to splurge for a quality product. Read more

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Savvy Consumer Tip: Choosing a Summer Camp

Posted on June 01, 2017 by Chris Bjorklund

With summer right around the corner, now is a good time to start looking for the right camp for your kids. Read more

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How to Stay Up on Consumer News and Issues

Posted on May 23, 2017 by Chris Bjorklund

Like most of you, I subscribe to a variety of news feeds, blogs, email newsletters and podcasts, both for entertainment and so I can learn about things I’m interested in. I’m a big fan of Flipboard, my news feed for politics, cooking and music. For local restaurant openings and news, I enjoy reading tablehopper.com, and my favorite podcast right now is “On Being” with Krista Tippett, which I learned about from a colleague at Diamond Certified. When it comes to consumer news and issues, here are a few of the resources I use to stay informed.

Consumerreports.org
This website from the publishers of Consumer Reports magazine requires a subscription for detailed product ratings. Read more

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Posted in: Consumers, Savvy Tips
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Why Won’t They Call Me Back?

Posted on April 19, 2017 by Chris Bjorklund

I’m frustrated right now because I’ve been calling several local companies for service and haven’t heard back from any of them. I’m trying to get on a schedule for tree pruning, and I’m also attempting to schedule a furnace cleaning and fireplace inspection. I’ve left four voicemail messages for one of these companies over a two-week period. I’ve persisted because I’m a repeat customer and was satisfied with their services in the past.

I understand that small businesses can get overwhelmed with consumer demand. Severe storms like we had this winter mean tree service companies, plumbers, and roofers are working overtime and can’t keep up with all the requests. Read more

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Posted in: Consumers, Personal Stories, Savvy Tips
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Missing Money: How to Find and Claim It

Posted on March 28, 2017 by Chris Bjorklund

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. Read more

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