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Is Saying “Thank You” a Lost and Underappreciated Art?

Posted on February 28, 2017 by Chris Bjorklund

I’ve been saying “thank you” a lot lately and it feels good. After my last flight on Southwest Airlines, I stopped to tell the pilot and attendants how much I appreciated their attentiveness and on-time performance. I wrote a thank-you email to my Diamond Certified tree company in December because the crew did an excellent job pruning my large trees. When I had trouble resolving a problem with my health insurance company, a staff member kept communicating with me even though it took a few weeks to untangle. Afterward, I asked for her supervisor’s name so I could write a complimentary letter for her personnel file. The last time I was in the grocery store, Read more

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Diamond Certified Tips of the Day: Best of 2016

Posted on December 22, 2016 by Jennifer Chan

Followers of our Facebook page know that we post daily tips for Bay Area consumers. Whether these tips concern home improvement, auto care, health or something else completely, we strive to make them relevant, practical and helpful. Here’s a sample of 10 noteworthy tips from 2016. For more, be sure to “like” our page at www.facebook.com/diamondcertified.

Tip of the Day: While materials and workmanship are crucial factors in a fence’s longevity, another important aspect is preventative maintenance. To protect your fence from rot and premature wear, make sure fence posts are kept out of contact with the soil, and adjust sprinklers so their streams don’t hit the fence. Read more

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Posted in: Auto Tips, Consumers, Health Tips, Home Tips, Home Improvement, Real Estate Tips, Savvy Tips
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Avoid Plumbing Emergencies over the Holidaze

Posted on December 20, 2016 by Chris Bjorklund

I vividly remember one Christmas Eve when toilet water backed up into my shower and flooded the entire bathroom floor and laundry room. Our many houseguests were taking showers every day and both toilets were being flushed more than usual. What we didn’t know (until it was too late) was that our main sewer line was clogged with tree roots. With extra stress on an already compromised drainage system, it was a recipe for disaster. Since that expensive and embarrassing emergency, I’ve had a professional clean my drains every year to make sure the roots are cut and the water has an easy path to the main line. I haven’t had this problem since. Read more

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Keeping Your Dogs Safe over the Holidays

Posted on November 29, 2016 by Chris Bjorklund

I’ll never forget the time I was walking my dog the day after Thanksgiving and she got into a neighbor’s garbage bag that was full of turkey bones. First she started chomping and then she started choking. Luckily, the mail carrier was passing by and knew exactly what to do: the Heimlich maneuver. The partially chewed and splintered bones popped right out. We avoided an emergency trip to the veterinary hospital on a holiday weekend.antioch-dog

According to Dr. Howard Schutzman, owner of Antioch Veterinary Hospital, a Diamond Certified practice, we were fortunate. “The main problem with bones, especially turkey bones and chicken bones, is they splinter easily,” he explains. Read more

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Tapping into the Diamond Certified Experts: Kids and Keys

Posted on October 20, 2016 by Chris Bjorklund

In my role as the Savvy Consumer for the Diamond Certified Resource, I get many opportunities to tap into the expertise of Diamond Certified company owners. I interview them for radio spots for KNBR, KSFO and KGO, as well as for consumer tips that are published in Bay Area newspapers. Some of them are featured in this monthly newsletter. These experts have deep knowledge of their industries and have taught me many things, from how to improve my gas mileage to how to prevent water leaks in my bathroom.

Recently, I came across an interesting tip that deserves attention. Katelyn Radtke, operations manager of Foothill Locksmiths, Inc., has a warning about the potential hazards of letting teething children play with house keys and car keys. Read more

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Five Steps for Negotiating a Speedy Partial Refund

Posted on August 16, 2016 by Joy Lanzaro

Have you ever hired a service provider to perform a repair and found that while certain elements of the performance were acceptable, other elements weren’t performed correctly? Here are some tips for speaking with the manager/owner to request a partial refund.

1. Prepare your mind
Be rational when asking for a partial refund—it shows the other party that you’re realistic and makes an implicit promise that a speedy fix is within sight. Separate what you know to be true (the service contract, industry requirements) from what you believe to be true (your subjective assessment and intuition).

2. Temper your approach
Try to gradually escalate pressure in your tone, Read more

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Posted in: Customer Service, Savvy Tips

Savvy Consumer Tip: Teen Driving

Posted on August 04, 2016 by Chris Bjorklund

Do you have a teenager who is about to start driving? Watch this video for some helpful tips. Read more

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