Diamond Certified Blog

by James Florence
October 14, 2014

We recently updated this post and added more content. You can read it here.

While Part 1 of this blog series outlined important weatherproofing measures to protect your home against water and air leaks, this segment addresses a second, equally crucial aspect of winter home preparation:

Make sure vital heating systems are performing safely and efficiently.
There are two fixtures you don’t want to break down in the middle of winter: your central heating system and your hot water heater. Losing either of these crucial home components can make for an extremely uncomfortable situation, so it’s a good idea to make sure they’re in good working order before the cold weather sets in. Read more

by Jennifer Chan
October 08, 2014

If you’re locked out of your home or car, you might assume that googling “locksmith” or pointing to a random name in the phone book will yield a positive result. However, as it turns out, choosing a locksmith at random is a risky move. According to Gary Lekan, Read more

by Jennifer Chan
October 08, 2014

Scammed by a locksmith

I delete emails from down-and-out Nigerian royalty. Stranded hospital-bound strangers get nothing. And when Bernie Madoff made me an offer I couldn’t refuse, I said, “No way!” Or I would have, if he had…you get the drift. Consequently, it is with great humility (and some shame) that I admit this in a public forum: I got scammed by a locksmith—or more accurately, a con artist posing as a locksmith. Here’s how it happened.

One bright fall morning, I carefully locked all the doors to my house, walked my kids to the bus stop and handed my only house key to my son (who had forgotten his). Read more

by James Florence
October 06, 2014

We recently updated this post and added more content. You can read it here.

Summer has given way to autumn, and people throughout the Greater Bay Area are starting to get ready for the upcoming holiday season. However, amidst your fall decorating and holiday shopping, it’s important to remember another key seasonal measure: preparing your home for imminent winter weather. With its chilly temperatures and heavy rainfall, winter can take a toll on any home, but with proper preparation, you can fortify yours against the elements and avoid common problems.

Weatherproof your exterior
Whether to keep out water or cold air, weatherproofing your home is a vital preparatory measure during winter. Read more

by Chris Bjorklund
October 02, 2014

Do you know your rights when it comes to dealing with a collection agency? Watch this video for some helpful info. Read more

by James Florence
September 18, 2014

Like most people, I have a tendency to assume the minutiae of details surrounding my life will continue to function smoothly, whether or not I acknowledge them. However, once in a while, an uncommon occurrence rouses me from my usual state of complacency. A recent instance followed the Napa Valley earthquake of August 24, 2014.

As a resident of Santa Rosa, I was on the outskirts of the quake’s radius and only mildly felt its effects. The next day, however, as I walked onto my back deck, I was immediately struck with an eerie sensation. “Do we always get shade at this time of day?” I thought, as I looked up at the towering California Redwood that stood in my backyard and saw the tip of its crown eclipsing the midday sun. Read more

by James Florence
September 11, 2014

Most homeowners understand the importance of regularly changing their furnace filters, but when it comes to choosing a product, few realize the extent of their options. Far from a one-size-fits-all affair, furnace filters range from disposable fiberglass units to high-efficiency pleated models, so it’s important to consider several factors before making a decision. Read more

by Chris Bjorklund
September 08, 2014

In the market for new bedding? Watch this video for some helpful buying tips. Read more

by James Florence
September 02, 2014

Most people are aware of the critical importance of dental hygiene, but what isn’t so well-known is the danger of overdoing it. While routine brushing and flossing are crucial for maintaining dental health, brushing too vigorously and too often can actually harm your teeth and gums.

Whether you brush too fast, too hard or too often, over-brushing can lead to several adverse effects, including enamel abrasion, which is when a tooth’s protective enamel layer breaks down. Read more

by James Florence
August 26, 2014

With the growing popularity of solar power, more and more homeowners are making the switch to this affordable, environmentally-friendly energy source. However, many are unaware of the scope of their options, particularly in regard to on- and off-grid systems. While the majority of solar power systems are connected to the main utility grid, off-grid installations remain independent of central power, which can be a beneficial option under the right circumstances. Read more