Expert Reveals Secrets to Choosing Wisely, Saving Money and Avoiding Scams!


Tempted by Home Depot $37 Carpet Installation?

 

A new round of 2014 TV ads from Home Depot now offers whole house carpet installation for just $37.00. Big box stores want to entice you to buy new carpet from them and it would seem that they are willing to give you a fantastic deal on installation if you do. The question is… Who’s Installing Your Carpet?

 

Why are they giving away carpet installation for just $37?

There are several reasons why they are giving away carpet installation for just $37. They used to hire carpet installers directly but his backfired on them. Homeowners posted a ton of complaints on the internet claiming poor carpet installation and poor customer service. Today they contract out their installs to an independent installation company.

Let me ask you… If you pay just $37 installation for a whole house full of carpet and the installer does a lousy job, what recourse do you have? Maybe they will come back and try to fix it. Maybe they will say it’s a carpet defect and that it is not their fault. Maybe they will refund your money…  But wait….You only paid $37 for installation right? What is their financial liability to you in the event they cannot satisfy you?  Might it be a $37 refund? What will it cost you to fight them in small claims court?

 

Who’s Installing Your Carpet?

Big box retailers used to hire sub-contracted carpet installers, but they had a real hard time finding and keeping qualified installers. It didn’t take long before all the real good installers left and would never return to work for the big box stores again.

Why?

Back in the 90’s Home Depot paid local installers a little better for carpet installation than the locally owned carpet stores, but they were so unorganized at the store level, that every morning a dozen or so carpet installers would stand around for hours waiting to load up the carpet and pad for the day’s job. Most often, the store personnel could not locate the carpet because it was buried somewhere in the back room along with dozens of appliances, boxes and various building materials. It would take a fork lift operator hours to finally uncover the rolls of carpet that had arrived the previous week.

 

Where’s My Carpet?

Often the carpet would be delivered to the wrong store, or the carpet would not arrive on schedule and the homeowners were never notified of the delay. Homeowners were heaping mad! They had already moved all the furniture out, taken time off work and the homeowner ended up waiting hours without a call or explanation. Carpet installers were angry too. A whole day was wasted without any pay because the job was scheduled but the carpet never arrived.

The store manager knew nothing, the person who ordered the carpet did not do any follow-up, and when a homeowner would call for an update, nobody knew anything. When a homeowner would call, the staff would often say something like, “Bob is in charge of handling all that and this is his day off!” Then and now, I seriously question Home Depot’s ability to properly run a carpet business. I do not think they should be in the carpet or flooring business at all.

Home Depot finally decided to contract out all of their carpet installations to independent flooring installation companies. This limits their liability since they now have nothing to do with the installers directly. If something goes wrong with your carpet install, Home Depot may simply refer you to the installation company, “Here’s their phone number, give them a call and have them come back and take a look.”

 

But is it an installation problem or a carpet defect?

The carpet installer says its a carpet defect NOT a bad install. Now you have to call the carpet manufacturer and ask to have an inspector come by and take a look.  The carpet inspector comes to your home and says it’s an installation issue NOT a carpet defect. Now what do you do?

What is $37 carpet installation really worth? Do you want to spend thousands on new carpet and then pay almost nothing for one of the most important aspects of the job? It doesn’t make much sense to me and I have been in the carpet business over 30 years. Any carpet you buy must be installed properly or it will wear out prematurely and improper installation can easily void the carpet warranty too.

What a sweet deal for big box retailers! Just collect all the money (profit) upfront and never have to worry about dealing with carpet complaints. They even use an independent company to do all their in-home measuring, and they can charge you a hefty fee for that if you don’t buy from them. (read more about carpet measuring scams on my website).

 

Beyond the definition of a “Basic Installation”

How can installers survive on $37? In reality, they are paid more. Not only that, they are allowed to charge you excessively for every little extra option you require. Need some new tack-less strips? Need carpet on stairs? Need metal transitions or thresholds? Need the old carpet and pad removed and hauled away? Have a Mobile Home? It’s all extra.

The list of extra charges you might encounter beyond their definition of a “basic installation” could easily cost you hundreds more than you expect. When the carpet installers show up with your new carpet and have the chance to take a good look at your home, they will then let you know exactly how much more you have to cough up for them to install your carpet. Have your checkbook ready!

 

Where to Find Well-Trained and Qualified Carpet and Flooring Installers? 

I don’t recommend buying carpet from big box retailers like Home Depot or Lowe’s.  You have way too much at stake should something go wrong. It’s real important to make sure your new carpet is installed correctly according to the manufacturers guidelines. Following The Carpet and Rug Installation Standard 105 is usually required. See it here: CRI Carpet Installation Standard 2011PDF(PDF 1.06 MB)

The fact is, locally owned and family-run carpet dealers have a much easier time finding and keeping qualified flooring installers. Most locally owned carpet dealers have long term relationships with experienced and well-trained installers that have been working with them for decades. This is great news for you because locally owned flooring dealers tend to offer the best customer service, offer lower prices, provide honest measuring and give free estimates.

Please be aware… not all locally owned flooring dealers are honest and reputable and carpet scams are common. Since 2008 I have been compiling a short list of locally owned carpet dealers that meet my requirements. See who I recommend near you! Alan’s Preferred Carpet Dealer Directory

Thanks for reading my blog. Visit my websites for more of my personal carpet opinions and carpet buying advice.

 

Alan Fletcher

AbcCarpets.com

CarpetProfessor.com

http://www.abccarpets.com

Alan’s Free Carpet Buying Checklist

Alan’s Preferred Carpet Dealer Directory

 

 


A Common Carpet Buying Nightmare…

“Unless you learn how to make wise and informed carpet choices this scenario could happen to you…”

After saving upyou have finally stashed away enough money to buy new carpet for your home! So you head over to a nearby carpet retailer and the salesperson helps you select the carpet of your dreams. After your new carpet is installed you are pleased with the way everything turned out, you love the color and how soft it feels underfoot.

You upload photos of your beautiful new carpet on your social media page and are looking forward to inviting your family over for the holidays! You recommend the carpet retailer to your friends and co-workers and post a positive review of your experience for the carpet retailer online.

Then a couple of years later you realize that your beautiful new carpet is starting to mat down and look ugly down the hallway and along your main traffic lanes. You try to spot clean these areas and vacuum the areas more often, but it doesn’t seem to help or make it look any better…

Finally as your carpet continues to mat down, you decide to call the carpet dealer to complain and they send someone out to take a look, they take pictures and ask you a lot of questions.

A few weeks later they call you to say your warranty claim for the carpet has been denied for one reason or another. Maybe it’s because there is no warranty coverage for “matting or crushing” of the carpet pile. Maybe it’s blamed on a bad installation job or maybe they blame you for not maintaining the carpet according to the manufacturer’s warranty requirements.

Regardless of their reason for denying your warranty claim, you now have to live with the carpet until you are able to save up enough money to replace it.

 

Don’t let this happen to you! 

Some carpets are designed to tolerate heavy foot traffic and some are not. A good carpet salesperson will make sure you choose a carpet that is capable of tolerating your level of foot traffic you have in your home. Some carpet salespeople are more concerned with “closing the deal” rather than making sure you choose a carpet that is designed meet your needs and goals.

Getting ready to buy new carpet? Here is what I suggest you do. Do your carpet homework… Read through my website and learn my helpful tips, tricks and insider secrets that will help you make wise carpet choices from start to finish. It all free! http://CarpetProfessor.com

Be sure you take my free Carpet Foot Traffic Test to see what grade or quality of carpet you need to meet your needs and goals.

Before you begin shopping for new carpet, visit my Preferred Carpet Dealer Directory to see who I recommend near you. Be sure to print out and use my free discount coupon and get up to $100 off your carpet purchase. Get several bids or estimates from other carpet retailers and be sure to ask for a detailed breakdown of all the charges and fees.

Feel free to email me any carpet questions you may have along your carpet buying journey. – Alan Fletcher aka The Carpet Professor.

The Carpet Professor

http://www.CarpetProfessor.com – Learn everything you need to know about buying new carpet wisely!


Question:

We had a Karastan nylon carpet installed about 8 years ago.  It’s now deteriorating rapidly. We continue to find thousands of broken carpet fibers in the carpet and on adjacent surfaces every day, even after vacuuming.

I was led to understand that nylon carpet is the most durable fiber available, so I’m very surprised at this deterioration. Parts of the carpet are often exposed to sunlight, and deterioration is worse in those areas.

Is this deterioration common in nylon carpets? Would steam cleaning prevent further deterioration?

_________________________________

Alan’s Response:

Thanks for your email. Sorry to hear about your carpet troubles. I don’t have a complete picture of your circumstances so I am going to give you my best opinion and a general response and let you draw your own conclusions. Feel free to respond with additional info you think may be pertinent! There may be several issues you need to consider…

Carpet Shedding and Fuzzing Explained: http://www.homecarpetshopping.com/why_do_carpets_fuzz.htm

Direct and indirect sunlight is bad for all carpets and causes the fiber to become faded and weak and the backing to become dry and brittle. This sounds like your main issue. Other factors that may be contributing to the deterioration: Your climate, type of heat used in your home, very low humidity combined with other climactic factors can easily play a part to your carpet deteriorating more quickly. Heavy foot traffic, active kids and pets, and improper maintenance also help break down the carpet fiber prematurely.

From my website: How Long Does Nylon Carpet Last? http://www.abccarpets.com/carpet_cost_longevity.htm

Contact the retailer where you purchased it and ask them to come out and take a look. Do you have your original sales receipt showing exactly what carpet style you purchased? If so, they can look it up to see the warranty limitations. Do you still have your original warranty paperwork? If so, you may still have some limited recourse from the manufacturer if you have followed all their warranty requirements to the letter.

From my website:: http://www.carpetprofessor.com/about_carpet_stain_warranties.htm

Steam cleaning will not solve the problem, but is required periodically to keep your carpet warranty in force. If your warranty has expired or is null and void due to your negligence, then you should contact a reputable carpet cleaning expert and have them take a look. They may have a way to help extend the life of your carpet for a little while longer.

From my website:: http://www.carpetprofessor.com/Reputable_Carpet_Cleaning_Care_Guide.htm

Yes, nylon is the most durable fiber available today, however not all nylon carpets are created equal. It all boils down to the manufacturers specifications of the carpet in question, including: Fiber type, tuft-twist, pile height, pile density, fiber face-weight, and much more… How well the carpet is constructed makes a big difference in the life-span and overall durability of the carpet. Take a look at my Carpet Durability Chart (see attached file). It may help you make wise carpet choices in the future.

Karastan does make a good carpet, but some carpets are only designed to last 7 to 10 years.  Maybe your carpet has already lived it’s intended lifespan. Don’t expect to get a free replacement or a huge discount on new carpet, but there is a small chance for a little something in your favor if the dealer you purchased from is reputable and locally-owned. Family-run flooring dealers are often willing to (throw you a bone) give you a discount on your new carpet to make sure you are a satisfied repeat customer.

If you purchased from a locally-owned, family-run flooring dealer, I have found that being pleasant and patient during their investigative process will usually lead to a better end-result for you, if you know what I mean. I doubt you will have any warranty coverage at this point, but the dealer knows you have plenty of friends, co-workers and relatives in their service area and you might mention you would be happy to recommend them highly and post a favorable online review if you are treated right. If you did not purchase your carpet from a locally-owned family-run flooring dealer, then your outcome may not be very favorable for you.

Hope this helps!

Alan J. Fletcher

Website: AbcCarpets.com

Trusted Dealers: Alan’s Recommended Carpet Dealers

Email Alan@AbcCarpets.com

eBook: Alan’s Complete Carpet Buying Guide – Kindle at Amazon.com


I’m always looking for honest, reputable, top quality carpet and rug cleaning companies to list on my website and recommend to my readers.

Here’s a link to my website, See who I recommend near you;

ABC_Carpet Cleaner Directory Header

Alan’s Best Carpet Cleaning Directory at AbcCarpets.com

http://www.abccarpets.com/ABC_Best_Carpet_Cleaner_Directory.htm

Looking to buy new carpet? Get free expert information, visit http://www.abccarpets.com


How Much Does Carpet Cleaning Cost?

©Alan Fletcher – Carpet Expert and Consumer Advocate at AbcCarpets.com

  • When to have your Carpets Cleaned.
  • Finding a Reputable Carpet Cleaning Company.
  • Facts about Carpet Cleaning Prices.

A popular homeowner question is “How much will it cost to have my carpets cleaned?” If it’s been several years since your last professional carpet cleaning then your carpets are likely quite dirty, even though it may not appear dirty it may require some special “carpet cleaning” attention. 

The price you’ll pay for carpet cleaning depends on the age and condition of your carpet and the amount of time and effort and cleaning products it will take to do the job right.

Rule # 1

The dirtier your carpet is… the more it’s going to cost to have it cleaned.

Imagine not cleaning your stove top for a week, or a month or a year! How much more difficult would it be to clean it thoroughly?

The same goes for your carpet. If you haven’t your carpet cleaned in years, no matter who you call it’s going to take some extra time and effort to do the job properly.

 

Rule #2

Don’t expect miracle results from low-cost or discount carpet cleaning services.

If your carpets are in serious need of a thorough deep-cleaning, don’t go searching for a Carpet Cleaner Coupon that says “Two Rooms Cleaned for $29.99!” You won’t be happy with the results from a light surface cleaning.

Carpet Cleaners that advertise super cheap prices are notorious for luring you in with an amazing low price special and once they arrive, they surprise you with an estimate so high it will knock you off your feet! You don’t need this type of aggravation! But be prepared to pay a reasonable and fair price to have your carpets properly cleaned.

Carpet Cleaning Cost

The typical cost to clean your carpet will range from 15 cents to 45 cents per square foot.

Dirty carpets take longer and require more effort to clean. This means if you have your carpets professionally cleaned every 12 to 18 months like the carpet manufacturers suggest, then the cost to have your carpet cleaned should be on the low end of the pricing scale. 

But if you wait too long to have your carpets cleaned, then expect the price you are asked to pay to be on the higher end of the pricing scale. If you haven’t had your carpets professionally cleaned in 6 years, don’t be surprised when the estimate is twice or three times as much as you expect.

The fact is, all carpet cleaners must charge a reasonable price for their services or they won’t be able to stay in business. If it takes twice as long to thoroughly clean your carpet then expect the job to be priced accordingly.

One Room Cost Example:

A common bedroom size is 10’ X 14’ or 140 square feet. 

  • At 18 cents per square foot the cost for cleaning would be about $25.00 (Carpet doesn’t appear dirty)
  • At 28 cents per square foot the cost for cleaning would be about $40.00 (Carpet looks fairly dirty)
  • At 36 cents per square foot the cost for cleaning would be about $50.00 (Carpet is very dirty!)

Some Carpet Cleaning companies prefer to charge by the room or by the job. It still ends up being pretty close to the same price as it would be if calculated by the square foot, so if you know about how many square feet you need to have cleaned it will be easy for you to calculate an approximate cost. 

Whole House Carpet Cleaning Cost Example:

Most 3-bedroom ranch style homes are about 1000 square feet. 

  • At 18 cents per square foot – Total cost about $180.00 (Carpet doesn’t appear dirty)
  • At 28 cents per square foot – Total cost about $280.00 (Carpet looks fairly dirty)
  • At 36 cents per square foot – Total cost about $360.00 (Carpet is very dirty!)

  Please remember: It’ is NOT a scam for a professional carpet cleaner to charge you more to clean a very dirty carpet.

Proper Carpet Care and Maintenance

It’s up to you to make sure your carpet is maintained and cared for according to the carpet manufacturer’s guidelines. Failure to do so will void your carpet warranty and cause your carpet to wear out prematurely. Regular vacuuming and professional cleanings every 12 to 18 months is required and will allow your carpet to last as long as possible. Learn more How To Care For Your Carpet

Rule #3

Have your carpets cleaned before they start to look dirty.

Abrasion is what causes carpet to look ugly and worn out. If you wait too long between cleanings, your carpet can become permanently damaged. Dirt and grime can easily cause abrasive wear that cannot be undone. Once you reach this point there is nothing any carpet cleaner can do to restore the “like-new” appearance your carpet once had. Sure you can have your carpets cleaned, but you won’t be happy with the way your carpet looks when it’s done.

Rule #4

Make arrangements to have your carpets cleaned regularly

There are plenty of “poor quality” carpet cleaning companies that you need to avoid. So instead of clipping out a carpet cleaning coupon and rolling the dice hoping you get good service, visit Alan’s Best Carpet Cleaner Directory and see who I recommend near you. All the companies on my list are IICRC certified and personally hand-selected by me. They must pass my test before I will recommend them to you. Make an appointment and ask them about their Carpet Maintenance Plans.

What is a Carpet Maintenance Plan?

Offered only by professional carpet cleaning businesses, it’s a special price you can get for purchasing your future carpet cleanings in advance for a discounted price. Perhaps they might offer four carpet cleanings for the price of three or three carpet cleanings for the price of two. This can be a smart way to make sure your carpets cleaned on a regular and ongoing basis. 

I think it is a very smart move and you have the option of setting the date of cleaning whenever it is convenient for you. You will save money in the long run, your carpet will last years longer, your home will always look nice and be a healthier place to you and your family to live.

Carpet Cleaning Extras

Spills, spots and stains…

Some carpet stains need special treatment and require extra time, treatment and effort. You should expect pre-treatment of most spots and stains to be included as part of the basic price, but in some cases, especially with pet accidents or biological spills and stains there may be an extra charge.  It’s impossible to predict how much extra it might be without knowing the type of stain, size and disposition of the affected area. 

Carpet Damage, Restoration and Repairs

Carpet Cleaners may be able to repair or restore your damaged carpet. Carpet is often damaged from floods, accidents, burns or pets, but may be repairable or restored by a competent carpet Cleaning technician.

Some spots and stains are impossible to clean but other options may be available. In some cases, depending on the type of carpet you have, carpet dyeing may restore the color to a faded or bleached out area. Burns can be cut out and replaced with leftover carpet or by using the same carpet taken from a “less critical” area (like a closet).

Some carpets may need to be re-stretched or reinstalled. The cost for these extra services will depend on your situation. If the cost is too high or if the carpet is not repairable you will have to decide if it’s time to start thinking about buying new carpet.

Also: 


Before You Buy New Carpet Checklist – CarpetProfessor.com

 

There are certain wise steps every homeowner should take in order to make sure the carpet you buy will meet your needs and goals and that you don’t make simple yet costly carpet buying mistakes.

The Carpet Professor (www.carpetprofessor.com) has published a free and useful list of The order of events you need to be aware of,  and what issues you need to look out for, in a handy and useful PDF file entitled: “Before You Buy New Carpet Checklist”.

Click the link below to learn secrets to how to buy carpet wisely, and what you need to do to make sure your carpet is selected wisely and installed properly and you have few problems along the way!

 

http://www.carpetprofessor.com/before_you_buy_new_carpet_checklist.htm


“How to Measure For Carpet In 4 Simple Steps”

©Alan Fletcher – Carpet Expert and Consumer Advocate

Many carpet salespeople are not well trained in the art of carpet measuring and may sell you more carpet than you actually need.  It’s a common problem that could end up costing you hundreds more than you actually need to spend. Here’s how to protect yourself from overmeasuring:

To protect yourself from being overcharged for materials or labor, you need to find out approximately how much carpet you need to buy. But remember, having a carpet professional measure your home for you is always the best way to go! Notice that I said “Carpet Professional”, I did not say “Carpet Salesperson”. Some salespeople measure very well while others have absolutely no idea what they are doing, and you might not be able to tell the difference until it’s too late.

However, you can easily learn how to measure your home for carpet in four simple steps. This can help you avoid being overcharged for carpet, pad and installation or help you get a good idea about how much your carpet project is going to cost. You just need a tape measure, paper and pencil and a calculater.

After you do all four steps and measure your home for carpet, you can also take your diagrams to the carpet retailer or other carpet seller and they can determine how much carpet you need from your diagram. This will help you confirm how much carpet you need and help prevent you from being overcharged for materials and labor.

Step One

Draw a simple diagram of your home. I did this drawing on my computer using a simple “paint” program; you have a paint program on your computer too, look in “accessories” in your program files.

The drawing doesn’t have to be perfect but the measurements need to be accurate.  Just a simple drawing with all the rooms shown is all you need. If you have a two story home, then do two drawings, one for upper, one for lower. Your drawing should look something like this…

Click here to read the full article:

http://abccarpets.com/how_to_measure_for_carpet_in_4_simple_steps.htm

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