Diamond Certified Blog

by James Florence
October 17, 2017

One of the biggest trends in hardscaping is the use of paving stones to build features like patios, driveways and walkways. Unlike a single, uniform concrete slab, a paving stone installation is assembled mosaic-style with multiple small stones or “pavers.” This method of hardscape construction offers several advantages over that of poured concrete, from a wider variety of design options to a more resilient final product. To learn more, we’ve asked six Diamond Certified Expert Contributors to take us through the consecutive phases of paving stone installation. Read more

by Joy Lanzaro
October 12, 2017

One woman’s thoughts on what to pack in an emergency

by Joy Lanzaro, Director, Mediation and Compliance

Few of us have ever witnessed fire damage to residential and commercial structures like we’ve seen in the North Bay over the past few days. Many of us are experiencing a combination of emotions as a result, and anxiety is running high. One way to be prepared and manage anxiety is to put together a “Go Bag” just in case you need to quickly evacuate. My Go Bag is tiny because I’m single—one dog, no kids. Nearly all of my financial and insurance business is transacted online, so that eliminates some documentation. Read more

by Suzanne Carroll
October 10, 2017

Millions of Americans have sought pain relief through chiropractic treatments. As an alternative form of care, chiropractic doesn’t face the same scrutiny as traditional medicine, which makes it more important for patients to educate themselves about the field. The old image of chiropractors as “spine-crackers” is outdated; today, practitioners use an array of techniques to heal patients. Below, we’ll define some chiropractic approaches, offer some tips for spinal health and answer some questions you may have before seeking treatment. Read more

by Jennifer Chan
October 05, 2017

Last year, we set ourselves a challenge: Improve our website without losing any of the great features consumers use and love. Today, we’re excited to announce the launch of the newly redesigned diamondcertified.org!

We came into this project confident that the Diamond Certified Resource is the best way for consumers to find local, top rated companies. We knew our website averages more than 430,000 visitors per year, and most of these visitors are Bay Area consumers who are seeking helpful expertise and companies they can trust. We also knew we could make our website even better.

We had two goals with this redevelopment project:

  1. Make it easier for consumers to find all types of solutions,
  2. Read more

by Jennifer Chan
October 04, 2017

Here are some tips for donating to charity, now or at any time (adapted from Consumer Reports):

  • If you plan on claiming your donation on your tax return, make sure the charity you’re interested in is tax-exempt.
  • Watch out for sound-alikes. It’s not uncommon for low-rated charities to select names similar to high-rated charities.
  • When possible, give directly to the charity itself rather than a professional fundraiser or other go-between.
  • Read more

by James Florence
October 03, 2017

With Joe Moore, owner of Joe Moore Painting & Roofing, a Diamond Certified company.

If you think you need a new roof on your home, you may be mistaken. According to Joe Moore, owner of Joe Moore Painting & Roofing in Windsor, there’s a good chance you don’t need one—not yet, at least. “The majority of customers who call us for a new roof don’t actually need one; they just need maintenance or repairs,” he explains. “I’d say 65 to 70 percent of the time, we’re able to give a homeowner three to five more years on their current roof with a simple repair.” Read more

by Suzanne Carroll
September 28, 2017

Many Bay Area consumers had great experiences with Diamond Certified companies this summer, and they’ve been letting us know about them.

The Breens from Walnut Creek recently completed a major project with Kodiak Construction, replacing a circular driveway, walkways, a porch and a patio at their home. They found Kodiak’s estimator “very easy to work with,” adding, “he came to our home several times to better understand what we wanted, he helped educate us about our options and the final estimate was easy to understand.” The Breens described the work crew as “the hardest working we’ve ever encountered” and praised their respectful treatment of pre-existing landscape features. “A lot of their business comes from repeat customers and we can see why,” wrote the Breens. Read more

by James Florence
September 26, 2017

These days, more and more Bay Area homeowners are ditching their old water heaters for cutting-edge tankless models. Because of their advanced technology, tankless water heaters boast an array of practical benefits, not the least of which is a virtually endless supply of hot water. However, going tankless involves more than simply swapping the old for the new, as there are often functionality and compatibility concerns that need to be addressed before and during installation.

Here are five factors to consider when installing a tankless water heater:

1. Unit capacity
While sizing a conventional water heater mainly comes down to tank storage capacity, with a tankless unit, it’s a bit more complex. Read more

by Joy Lanzaro
September 19, 2017

One of the most common complaints we hear from consumers who are starting remodeling projects is that contractors don’t submit estimates in a timely fashion. To address this, we’re republishing one of our most popular posts, which features advice from Joy Lanzaro, Director of Mediation and Compliance, on what to do when a contractor’s bid hasn’t arrived. Hope you find it helpful!

The complaint often looks like this:

“How long should I wait for my contractor to provide an estimate? The estimator seemed really nice and keeps promising a bid, but it’s been weeks! I try to only hire locally but I’m tired of waiting and wasting my time. If they didn’t want my business, Read more

by James Florence
September 12, 2017

A vehicle has several components that need to be maintained, from tires to brakes to suspension. However, the most critical of these components are found under the hood—namely the engine and transmission. We’ve asked eight Diamond Certified Expert Contributors to give their tips on caring for these vital organs of vehicle operation.

  Read more