Helpful Expertise® From Owners of Top Rated Companies

If you want to gain knowledge on specific local services and become a more savvy consumer, we encourage you to access the Diamond Certified Expert Reports through the search options on the right. These mostly industry-specific articles, tip sheets, videos and blog entries are created for consumers by local experts. The authors know what they’re talking about because they own or manage local Diamond Certified companies that have been independently rated Highest in Quality and Helpful Expertise®. Each has contributed their expertise to create these reports for you and other consumers as a way to give back to their community.

Adam Garza Owner
San Jose Plumbing, Inc.

Bill Shepherd President
Shepherd’s Plumbing Heating & Air Conditioning, Inc.

Cindy Faulkner President
Valley Heating, Cooling, Electrical and Solar

Michal Johnson Owner
Grout Works Bay Area

Dane Marcy Service Manager
Kelly’s Appliance Center

Eva Kissova Owner
Kiss Painting

Dr. Alfred dela Cruz Owner
Alfred B. dela Cruz, DDS

Francisco Cortes President
Green Environment Landscape, Inc.

Hung Tu President
An Ky Construction Inc.

Janet Thrasher President
Thrasher Termite & Pest Control, Inc.

Jerry Allison President
Jerry Allison Landscaping, Inc.

Amie Prendergast Owner
Precision Door Services of the Bay Area


Video: Insulation Upgrades

OAKLAND — Miquan Johnson: HVAC and insulation upgrades – which upgrade should we install first? Well, first we need to take a look at your current home situation. Is this room colder than the other room? Are we losing more heat and cooling in this room? What should we install first? First, you want to check your attic, you want to check your walls, you want to check your crawlspace for insulation, because if you don’t have insulation in these areas, you can make the mistake by installing an HVAC system first, and you still experience the same problems. And also, you can decrease the efficiency life span of the HVAC system by not installing insulation first in your attic, Read more

Improving Insulation in a Drafty Home

OAKLAND — Is your home drafty? Do you have trouble maintaining a consistent comfortable temperature throughout? If so, you may be thinking about replacing your HVAC system with something more powerful. However, this would be a mistake. In all likelihood, the problem isn’t your HVAC system, it’s a lack of proper insulation. That’s why, before taking the expensive step of having your HVAC system replaced, you should have your home’s insulation assessed by a professional.

During the assessment, the professional will check the insulation in your attic, crawl space, walls and flooring. After getting the big picture, they’ll be able to recommend specific measures for improving the situation. In addition to adding or replacing insulation in areas where it’s missing or deficient, Read more

Diamond Certified Experts: Designing Your Remodel

Posted on January 19, 2021 by James Florence

Are you ready to remodel your home? Before you knock down any walls, you’ll need to figure out your design. What style are you aiming for? What are your aesthetic and functional requirements? What kinds of products do you want to incorporate? These are all important questions that need to be answered before the building can begin. To help you find the answers, we’ve asked six Diamond Certified Expert Contributors to provide their professional insights on remodeling design. Read more

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Posted in: Home Remodeling

Appliances: When to Repair and When to Replace

Posted on January 14, 2021 by Suzanne Carroll

We rely on our household appliances to make life easier. So, when your dishwasher no longer rinses as well as it used to or your stove top won’t turn on, your efficiently run home can screech to a halt. Determining whether to repair or replace a broken appliance can be tricky. In this article, you’ll find some guidelines to help you decide whether to call a local appliance repair technician or head to an appliance showroom to find something new.  Read more

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Posted in: Appliances
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Watch this video to learn Chris Bjorklund's Top 10 ways to be a savvy consumer.

Your Role in Creating a Win-Win Relationship

Many consumers find that it helps to know the scope of their jobs and their overarching goals before talking to a local service company. By knowing what you want to accomplish… Read more

How to be Their Favorite Customer

When you work with a local company, it’s ultimately their responsibility to perform a thorough and complete job, but you play a big part in the success of your project, too… Read more

Best Practices for Communicating with a Company

Delivering feedback to a company is like landing an airplane on an old runway—it can be bumpy or smooth depending on how much work has been put into maintaining the area… Read more


How to Develop the Relationship to Prevent Problems

Be willing to be satisfied. It’s strange but true. Small-business owners and their staff really like making their customers happy for its own reward. They’ll go the extra mile for customers… Read more

The First Steps to Problem Resolution

“Don’t make assumptions.” This piece of wisdom is perhaps the most powerful guiding principle in conflict prevention. I picked it up from a book called The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz… Read more

Go to Problem Resolution and Mediation Hub

This informative page will teach you what to do when you have an issue with a local company. Read more

Strong Plans for 2021!

Posted on December 17, 2020 by Jim Stein

On behalf of our Diamond Certified Resource team, I want to wish you and your family a wonderful holiday season. It was a year like none other. Together, we endured intermittent lockdowns and chaotic conditions. And when you’re responsible for running a local company, you have to adapt and look out for your customers and staff. I’m pleased to report that our Diamond Certified companies excelled at both. Now, we prepare for the big step forward. Read more

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Giving Thanks

Posted on November 26, 2020 by Jim Stein

This year has been like none other. Our Diamond Certified company owners have been working hard to make lemonade from lemons, staying strong to help employees while securing the long-term future of their companies.

This is the time of year to thank special people and reflect on outstanding deeds—an ideal precursor for personal and business planning. Besides focusing on family members and friends, I’m pleased to report that on the whole, Diamond Certified companies have done better than most during the COVID-induced changes to our operating environment. Almost all have hung in there, with only a handful failing or picking this time to retire. Read more

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Your HealthSafety Qualified Advantage

Posted on October 30, 2020 by Jim Stein

Times have changed, and so have consumers. The pandemic has made them cautious of interacting outside of their family circle. So, in order to win their trust and earn their business, you need to make them feel comfortable and show them that you prioritize health safety in every aspect of your operations. That’s where your HealthSafety Qualified (HSQ) advantage comes in.

We introduced HSQ back in June, and the results have been impressive! HSQ works well for companies like yours because a third-party certification showing that a company follows best practices for health safety makes people feel more confident about working with you. Read more

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How to Handle a Bad Online Review

Posted on October 27, 2020 by Joy Lanzaro

We all know that when things don’t go as planned in business, one side of the story might end up on Yelp. As a Diamond Certified company, you most likely made every effort to resolve the customer’s concerns in a fair and timely manner. You may have a lot of conflicting feelings about the reviewer and Yelp, and you might even be concerned that the review could negatively impact your business. Read more

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