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    Diamond Certified Expert Contributors
    Read topic-based expert articles and watch informative video tips by Diamond Certified Expert Contributors, each of whom manages a local company that has been independently rated Highest in Quality and Helpful Expertise®.

    Diamond Certified Consumer Blog
    The Diamond Certified Blog is updated bi-weekly and features helpful articles and videos on a wide variety of topics. Read blogs about home, health and auto maintenance; learn about industry-leading organizations; stay up-to-date on the latest developments in the Diamond Certified Resource; and much more.

    Savvy Consumer Tips
    Read the latest consumer advice and tips from Chris Bjorklund, a Bay Area consumer advocate with more than 35 years of experience. You can also access archived Savvy Consumer Tips and contact Chris about consumer issues in your area.

    How to Be a Savvy Consumer
    Watch a video and read informative articles to learn how you can be a savvy consumer and get the most out of the consumer experience.

    Local Company Owner Blog
    Read our comprehensive series of business-to-business blogs to gain valuable insight into topics like customer retention, brand building, improving market signals and more.

DIAMOND CERTIFIED EXPERT CONTRIBUTORS
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.

Albert Nahman Owner
Albert Nahman Plumbing and Heating

Barbara Ragsdale President
Knights’ Electric, Inc.

Cameron Radonich Marketing Director
Los Gatos Roofing

Debby Benson-Miller Real Estate Agent
Prime Real Estate Services

Geoffrey Kulik Partner
Sterck Kulik O’Neill Accounting Group, Inc.

Dr. Jag Dhesi Owner
Springtown Wellness Center – Jag Dhesi, D.C.

Andrea Vernerova Property Manager
CM Property Management Inc.

Rolf Bell Principal
Green Living Builders LLC

Alex Nunez Manager
B & J Transmissions

Dr. Lovely Manlapaz Owner
Lovely Manlapaz Teodoro DDS

Bill Place Owner
Nor Cal Glass Products, Inc.

Soumil Amin Owner
CertaPro Painters of Berkeley

RECENT DIAMOND CERTIFIED EXPERT REPORTS

Video: The Five P’s of Preparing Your Home for Sale

SONOMA — Host, Sarah Rutan: When it comes to preparing your home for market, a professional’s guidance can help you make a strong impression. To learn more, we’re in Sonoma with Diamond Certified Expert Contributor Sheila Deignan, Realtor with Better Homes and Garden Real Estate | Wine Country Group.

Diamond Certified Expert Contributor, Sheila Deignan: Hi. I wanted to share a tip for you when preparing your home for sale. Sellers usually get overwhelmed about what to do. And so I’ve broken it down. One of my steps into the five Ps. And the first one, you want to pare down, which is always the hardest, because we always have more stuff than we ever want. Read more

Video: Polymeric Joint Sand for Pavers

PINOLE — Host, Sarah Rutan: When installing a new paver feature on your property, there’s one feature that’s worth the additional investment. Today we’re in Pinole with Diamond Certified Expert Contributor Carlos Barbosa of Brasmerica Pavers System to learn more.

Diamond Certified Expert Contributor, Carlos Barbosa: When you choose your contract, make sure what kind of sand they are going to use on your paver joints. I, as a professional, advise you to use polymeric sand instead of regular ones. It’s because the polymeric sand has a special glue that’s when gets to the joint, it gets hard. And it’s important to have because with the rain, you won’t get – Read more

DIAMOND CERTIFIED CONSUMER BLOG
Blog
A Homeowner’s Guide to Ladder Safety

Posted on August 22, 2019 by James Florence

Every year, there are thousands of ladder-related injuries in the United States, most of which occur in non-occupational settings like residential homes. This isn’t surprising: while workers are typically trained on ladder safety, few homeowners receive such instruction, which increases the chances of improper usage. That’s why, whether you need to clean your windows, clear your gutters or access your roof, it’s important to educate yourself on ladder safety before climbing one. Read more

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Industry Organization Spotlight: Interlocking Concrete Paver Institute

Posted on August 20, 2019 by Suzanne Carroll

Since 1993, the Interlocking Concrete Pavement Institute (ICPI) has served as the leading trade organization of the segmental concrete paving industry in North America. ICPI’s 1,100 members come from across the United States and Canada. They work as paver manufacturers, installation contractors, designers and suppliers.

ICPI positions itself as the industry’s leading authority on best practices and technical expertise for paver installation and maintenance. The organization’s primary goals are to promote greater use of segmental pavers in residential, commercial and public settings, and to improve the skills and standards of those working in the industry. Read more

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Posted in: Industry Organization Spotlight
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HOW TO BE A SAVVY DIAMOND CERTIFIED CONSUMER
Watch this video to learn Chris Bjorklund's Top 10 ways to be a savvy consumer.
HOW TO MANAGE YOUR RELATIONSHIP WITH THE COMPANY YOU CHOOSE

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

WHAT TO DO IF THINGS GO WRONG

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

LOCAL COMPANY OWNER BLOG
Blog
Once Upon a Time…

Posted on July 08, 2019 by Greg Louie

People love stories. That’s why we spend so much time with movies, TV shows, books, video games, and news and entertainment websites. But that’s still not nearly enough. We need even more stories! That’s why more than a billion of us tune in to watch our friends’ and families’ stories unfold on Facebook; and for most, part of the attraction is that we even get to tell our own stories. So, as a business manager, it shouldn’t surprise you that your potential customers are taking the data points they collect about your company and converting them into stories. It’s the way our brains are wired. Since this is the human process, it’s wise to make sure your company’s stories elevate your position. Read more

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More Than Just a Rating

Posted on June 17, 2019 by Greg Louie

It’s playoff season in the NBA and NHL, and as of this writing, both Bay Area teams are still in the running for their respective championships. No matter what happens over the next few weeks, this is an exciting time for the Golden State Warriors, the San Jose Sharks and their loyal fans. After all, every athlete wants to play for a championship team, just as every professional wants to feel pride in their work.

It’s natural—when business is booming and morale is high, it’s easier to acquire and retain staff because everyone feels like they’re part of a well-oiled machine. This is especially true for your company. You’ve Diamond Certified and been independently rated Highest in Quality and Helpful Expertise®, Read more

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When is Traffic Good?

Posted on March 11, 2019 by Greg Louie

Stop me if you’ve heard this one before: The other day, I was driving to a meeting when I hit unexpected traffic on the 580. Bay Area residents know this feeling all too well—you managed to make it out of the house 10 minutes early and you’re on track for a speedy arrival, but your plans are upended by an impenetrable block of vehicles that stretches as far as the eye can see.

As I was sitting in my car, waiting my turn in the stop-and-go river, I started thinking: is there such a thing as good traffic? Obviously not if you have somewhere to be, but when it comes to your company’s presence online, Read more

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