Free Carpet Information and Buying Guide
Alan Fletcher - Carpet Expert / Consumer Advocate - Retired after 30 years, do not sell or install carpet.
How to Avoid Carpet Scams?
1. Selecting the Right Carpet for You.
This critical aspect of buying carpet must include selecting a carpet made with the correct fiber, with a sufficient face-weight, including enough density and material quality to meets your needs and lifestyle. Get it wrong and you stand to lose thousands.
One of the most common problems you may encounter is with carpet salespeople who don't know very much about the products they are selling. If you put your trust in a carpet salesperson's advice or suggestions you may be making a huge mistake.
Ultimately you are responsible for what carpet you purchase, regardless of what carpet the salesperson recommends. If you end up with an unsuitable carpet you will have no one to blame but yourself.
2. Accurate Measuring will Save You Money
Sooner or later you may need to have someone come to your home to measure for carpet. Here is where you can encounter a major problem or carpet scam. Measuring for carpet is an art, and few carpet salespeople are well trained at measuring. While some homes are easy to measure, others can be quite tricky. You want to make sure that your home is measured accurately and so there the least amount of material waste possible.
If over-measured or measured wrong you lose money because you will be charged for more material and labor than you actually need. If your carpet needs are under-measured you won't have enough carpet to finish the job. Then they will have to order more carpet from the mill and you'll have to wait at least another three weeks before the carpet arrives.
Unscrupulous carpet salespeople can be very sneaky when they measure your home. and can make extra money by overcharging you for materials. In order to make more profit, they may say you need more carpet than you actually do. It's a very common carpet scam. If you are intentionally over-measured you stand to over-pay by hundreds of dollars. There are smart ways you can avoid this scam and I discuss them in detail in my Carpet Buying Guide.
3. Finding Qualified Carpet Installers
If installed wrong, your new carpet can lose half of it's intended life-span. This can be a huge problem for you if you don't know how to tell a good installer from a bad one especially since three out of four carpet installers are not properly trained.
In most cases, by the time you discover that your carpet has been installed improperly it's already too late. When you buy new carpet you generally have two choices, use the installers provided by the carpet retailer, or hire an independent carpet installer yourself.
Both options have their downside but no matter which way you end up going there are precautions you must take to ensure that your carpet is installed properly.
4. Choosing the Right Carpet Padding
Another common problem consumers face is buying the wrong carpet padding. Get this wrong and you not only void your carpet warranty, but your carpet will not last as long as it should. In some cases using the wrong padding will cause your carpet to develop wrinkles.
Don't trust the carpet salesperson to make this choice for you either. It is your responsibility to be sure you are buying the correct padding that matched the requirements set forth by the carpet manufacturer.
If the carpet retailer makes the pad choice for you, you will not have any recourse if your warranty is voided from using the wrong pad. Again, you are ultimately responsible for making sure that the correct padding is used.
There are many different types of padding, in varying thickness and density. Some are very expensive, some are quite reasonable, some are better for basements, some are better suited for high traffic areas like stairs and halls.
5. Where to find the Best Carpet Deals!
Everyone wants to get a good deal, and nobody wants to be overcharged. Carpet retailers are some of the most unscrupulous business people I have ever encountered.
There are a lot of carpet rip-offs and con artists so if you want to get a good deal on carpet, you are going to have to do some homework. Good deals are out there but they are hard to find unless you know where to look and how to recognize them.
6. Where NOT to Buy Carpet
Which retailer can convince you to buy from them first?
They use all sorts of gimmicks and tricks. See all the carpet ads on television? They spend plenty trying to get your attention. Who do you think is paying for those expensive commercials? The consumer. That's you.
Retailers mark up the price of their carpet as needed to offset their expensive advertising campaign. These heavy advertisers are just a few of the carpet retailers you should avoid if you really want to get a good deal on new carpet.
Read more: Where NOT to Buy Carpet