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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.

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


Video: Are You Over-Watering?

CONCORD — Host, Sarah Rutan: When it comes to yard irrigation, one mistake that’s easy to make is unintentionally over-watering. Today we’re in Concord with Diamond Certified Expert Contributor Michael Petrovich of Absolute Best Care to learn more.

Diamond Certified Expert Contributor, Michael Petrovich: Just a word of information for you. This time of year the way the weather’s change, we get a lot of water and sometimes we get very little water. When your plant – when you’re noticing your plants and if you see, like, little black dots or little black discoloration, that’s sometimes a sign of overwater. So be careful when you’re watering your plants, especially as the times now are getting warmer in the year to maybe cut back on your water and check the leaves, Read more

A Common Symptom of Over-Watering

CONCORD — If you notice little black dots or other instances of discoloration on your plants, you may assume they need more water, but this isn’t always the case. In fact, these symptoms are often a sign of over-watering.

As the weather gets warmer in summer, property owners have a tendency to overcompensate for the heat by giving their plants extra water. However, this can actually have a detrimental effect—since the plants are used to a certain type of watering, when their water intake suddenly jumps, it can put them in a state of stress. For this reason, it’s important to exercise caution when making adjustments to your plants’ irrigation regimen.

The challenge is figuring out how much water your plants actually need. Read more

Video: Site Finished Versus Pre-Finished Hardwood

Posted on September 19, 2019 by James Florence

Earlier this week, we posted an article featuring expert tips for selecting, installing and maintaining hardwood floors. One of these tips dealt with hardwood floor finishes—specifically, the way in which a natural wood floor’s finish differs from that of a prefinished wood flooring product. To learn more, watch this video by Diamond Certified Expert Contributor Reggie Keding, owner of Floor Coverings International in Concord.

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Posted in: Flooring, Diamond Certified Experts

Diamond Certified Experts: All About Hardwood Flooring

Posted on September 17, 2019 by James Florence

There’s a reason hardwood flooring has become an industry all its own—it’s a complex and challenging trade that requires an extensive amount of expertise. Accordingly, whether you’re planning to install a new hardwood floor or just want to maintain the one you have, there are a lot of things you need to know. To give you some insight, we asked 10 Diamond Certified Expert Contributors to provide their tips about hardwood flooring selection, design, installation and maintenance. Read more

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Posted in: Flooring, Diamond Certified Experts

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

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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