Choosing new carpet is more complicated and confusing than ever before. Here are 5 important things every homeowner needs to know.
1. Accurate Carpet Measuring Saves You Money!
Making sure you obtain correct measurements for your carpet project is very important. If your measurements are wrong, you will either pay too much or not have enough material to finish the job.
Inexperienced carpet salespeople tend to over-measure because they fear not ordering enough carpet to complete the job. Sneaky salespeople can intentionally over-measure your needs to increase their profit.
Homeowners who lack measuring experience tend to under-measure because they don’t know how to factor in the extra material needed for seaming, trimming and pattern matches. It takes years to become proficient at measuring for carpet so having your measurements verified would be wise.
Seasoned carpet salespeople know how to save you the most money by strategically using leftover material from one area to fill in areas in other areas. This can significantly reduce the amount of carpet you need to order and will also lower your cost for padding and installation too.
2. Product Knowledge Gives You Power to Choose Wisely.
Selecting the wrong carpet fiber is worst mistake you can make! Learn the truth about carpet fibers and carpet styles. Learn more about Carpet Fibers.
Choosing the correct padding is very important too. The more you know the better choices you will make. Learn more about Types of Carpet Padding.
Beware of misleading or incomplete carpet buying information obtained from websites that sell carpet or make a commission from the sale. These sites may not tell you everything you need to know, especially when their main goal is to convince you to buy from them or their affiliates.
3. Wise Shoppers Get Several Free “In-Home” Estimates.
Getting several estimates is just plain smart. It helps you narrow down your final choices and gives you the chance to compare estimates from local retailers side by side. You will come away knowing you made the best choice possible.
It’s not easy to compare carpets when they change the style and color names. That’s why its important to consider the specifications of each carpet to make sure you are comparing carpets of a similar type, grade or quality.
Carpet installed improperly can develop wrinkles and can cut its life-expectancy in half.
Finding a qualified carpet installer can be challenging. Finding a carpet installer advertising on Craigslist or in your local Thrifty Nickel is one way to go, but rarely the best way to locate an experienced installer.
The best installers prefer to work for well established locally-owned carpet stores.
5. Proper Carpet Care and Maintenance Ensures Longevity
Take proper care of your carpet and it will serve you well for years to come. There’s a lot more to caring for a carpet then vacuuming. And if you don’t clean your carpets correctly you could easily ruin them.
You also need to know how to keep your carpet warranty in force. Too many homeowners unknowingly void their warranty by following the carpet manufacturers care and maintenance guidelines. Read your warranty carefully.
It’s hard to find a reputable carpet store these days! That’s why I have created my own special hand-picked list of carpet stores who are locally owned, give free estimates, offer fair prices, have knowledgeable staff, provide honest measuring and hire qualified installers. Homeowners want to know… Are there any reputable Carpet Stores Near Me?
I go to great lengths to locate honest and reputable locally-owned carpet and flooring stores that provide excellent customer service.
They must stand behind their products & workmanship and be willing to go the extra mile to make sure you are completely satisfied with your carpet or flooring purchase from start to finish!
Have you seen the cost of new carpet lately? Buying new Carpet and flooring is a major expense and you deserve to be treated with respect and get a fair & square deal!
Beware of Television Advertising Scams and Rip-offs!
There are plenty of unscrupulous carpet and flooring retailers you need to avoid.
I get thousands of emails and hear from unhappy homeowners. It’s usually because they bought carpet from a home improvement warehouses. I never recommend buying carpet from corporate franchises or national carpet discount chains.
Most homeowners get lured-in by slick TV advertising offering unbelievable prices on new carpet and flooring. More common is the deep discount on installation, or even FREE installation. What out for the fine print on these gimmicks!
Big Box stores are always quick to ring up the sale but are not as eager to help you when you have a carpet problem, concern or complaint.
Your calls may go unanswered and many find that no one is willing to help or accept responsibility for making things right.
They always try to blame the other guy and leave you holding the bag. My Preferred Carpet Store Bay Minette Alabama?
It’s buyer beware especially when buying new carpet or flooring for your home. Here is some sound advice you might want to consider before you agree to buy new carpet or flooring…
The last time I checked… most of these Giant National Carpet Retailers use OTHER companies to facilitate their carpet sales, carpet measuring or carpet installation services.
That means if you ever have a carpet problem or complaint, you may have a hard time getting anyone to help you or take responsibility for making things right.
Did You Know…
Home Depot, Lowe’s and Costco contract out all their measuring and installation services to various privately-held companies?
Empire Today REQUIRES all their salespeople to form their own CORPORATION so they will be Independent Sales Contractors?
What does this all mean to YOU the homeowner? With so many fingers in the pie it is not too hard to figure out that you might end up paying way too much for your new carpet.
Carpet from Lowe’s, Home Depot, Empire?
These nationally advertised conglomerates take a large chunk of the profit right off the top. Then let other privately held companies and independent sales contractors each have a shot at making more money from your purchase.
From costly measuring fees to needless carpet and padding upgrades, from carpet and padding removal and disposal fees to extra unnecessary and costly installation add-ons.
There are plenty of ways they will try to make you cough up a lot more money before it’s all said and done.
The Lure of a Great Sounding Deal…
Get Three Rooms for the Price of One!
Get 60% OFF New Carpet
Free Basic Installation!
Low Price Guarantee!
Do these sales gimmicks sound familiar? Get out your magnifying glass so you can read all their fine print regarding these unbelievable sales gimmicks. I found this at Home improvement warehouse…
Can you read their fine print at the bottom? Use a magnifying glass! These advertised carpet installation deals are designed to attract unsuspecting homeowners who would like to save money on new carpet and flooring but don’t know how to go about doing it.
Unfortunately, these four giant retail carpet-selling conglomerates are heavy hitters with deep pockets who have only one thing in mind: Making Big Money by luring you in to buy from them.
Both Lowe’s and Home Depot have been trying to lure-in unsuspecting homeowners for years by offering low-cost or free “basic” carpet installation.
They make up a portion of this sneaky sales gimmick by charging more for the carpet and padding and by greatly increasing the added cost for anything extra you might need to complete the job.
They add on extra fees and charges for anything and everything that is considered beyond their limited definition of a “basic” installation. Their definition seems to change from time to time.
Their so-called “free” carpet installation that lures many homeowners in, may not be totally free once their sub-contracted measuring people and installers get a good look at what you really need to complete your project.
It’s highly likely there will be numerous extra fees & charges tacked-on to your final bill.
Final bill? Yes, and they may also require that you pay for the entire carpet job IN FULL before they will place your carpet or flooring order.
The final bill comes on the day of installation when the carpet installer determines that your job requires additional labor for various things like moving heavy furniture, special transitions, floor prep, and extra labor fees.
There are hefty charges for anything considered beyond their current limited definition of a “Basic” carpet installation.
These extra fees and charges can easily add up to hundreds that you were not forewarned about. That is, unless you took the time to read all their fine print.
As Gomer Pyle Says… Surprise! Surprise! Surprise!
Home Depot’s Low-Price Guarantee? They say they will beat any competitor’s price by 10%, but according to their fine print, that’s only on identical in-stock items.
That makes it virtually impossible for anyone to substantiate because they put private labels on all their carpet samples.
What are Private Labels?
They intentionally change the names of all their carpet styles and colors to make it nearly impossible for you to comparison shop.
The exact same carpet might cost a lot less at the local carpet store down the street, but how would you know?
You would have to lay out carpet samples from both stores side by side to compare. Lots of carpet retailers use private labels on their samples. It’s almost the norm these days.
Home Depot’s low-price guarantee sure sounds good until you read all their fine print. Can you say the word “exclusions”?
Homeowners need to avoid unscrupulous carpet retailers and only buy from locally owned, honest and reliable carpet stores.
Sneaky Carpet Sales Tactics
The Big Box home improvement warehouses have been charging homeowners a measuring fee just for coming to your home and sizing you up. The fee may be refundable if you agree to buy from them.
This is designed to add more sales pressure on you. They want to prevent you from shopping for carpet at other local stores.
Somewhere in the back of your mind, you think that if you don’t buy carpet from them, you will be forfeiting the $75 to $125 measuring fee have already paid.
Accurate Carpet Measuring?
From what I have been told by industry insiders, their licensed & certified measuring specialists they contract with, are required to measure your home using a “special method”.
Does that mean they add another 5, 10 or 15% of material to the total? Likely so! They are not going to tell you how many square feet your home needs. When they are all done measuring they leave to do all the calculations back at the office.
You Better Shop Around…
You will never know if their measurements are accurate. Even if you get several bids / estimates from other local carpet dealers. Why? Because they don’t give you anything you can use to verify their measuring. You will just get an estimate based on “one-price” to do the whole job.
Basically, they want to make darn sure there is more than enough carpet or flooring material to work with.
That way, they never have to worry about running short of material during installation.
That might translate into you paying for a lot more for new carpet & pad then you might actually need. Just adding an extra 10 yards of material could easily add $300 or more to the total cost for your carpet job. Ouch!
Empire Strikes Back?
Empire Today likes to attract customers by airing repetitive TV ads featuring unbelievable sales offers with next day installation.
If you call them, they will send a sales professional to your home who will show you samples and try to “close the sale” on the spot.
Are you getting a fair & square deal?
How long will this carpet last in your home?
What is your level of foot traffic in your home? Low, Medium, Heavy?
Are they trying to sell you a low-quality Polyester carpet and say it’s as durable as a Nylon Carpet?
These are just a few questions that you need solid answers to before you should commit yourself to buying from any shop-at-home flooring retailer.
All these giant retailers all use private labels on their carpet samples. Most farm out the measuring and installation of their products to other privately help companies. Some even have other companies do all the selling too. What does this mean to you?
If you have a complaint, you may have to deal directly with the independent contractors to seek a remedy.
Have a Carpet defect? You’ll have to contact the carpet manufacturer and have them inspect your carpet.
Have an installation problem? You’ll have to contact the carpet installer. No one likes getting called back to deal with a homeowner complaint.
If you can’t get a suitable remedy for your issue, you may have to file a claim in small claims court. The problem is, who is actually responsible for making things right and how can you prove that in court?
Costco Executive Members
Costco members were once shown a small display with miniature carpet samples. Lately they have been taking their displays with samples down. Executive members are offered some extra benefits that may be of interest to some folks. Like a longer warranty?
If you grab their free brochure you will be provided with a phone number to call to start your in-home Carpet Consultation Process.
Be sure to read all the fine print very carefully to see what added benefits you might qualify for, if any.
An independent flooring consultant will bring samples to your home and be happy to write up your order and arrange for installation.
While they do carry some good quality carpet, be prepared for sticker shock when you see what the total cost will be.
Again, you can’t comparison shop easily because they change the carpet style names and colors to thwart you.
To compare carpets, you would need to take their carpet samples with you into other nearby carpet stores and compare both identical samples side by side. It’s definitely not easy to do.
They know you probably won’t take the time and trouble to do this, and it is unlikely that they would leave their carpet samples with you anyway.
Is There a Better Way?
If you are in the market for new carpet or flooring of any kind, I think you should consider getting a free estimate from one of the dealers that I have listed in my Preferred Carpet Dealer Directory.
It’s taken me years to locate, investigate and identify these locally owned and family-run businesses and I think they are the best of the best here in America!
I suggest you visit several flooring retailers near you, get several free estimates and be sure visit a carpet store that I recommend if you can.
You decide for yourself who to buy from
When it’s all said and done, I think you will agree that my preferred dealers are knowledgeable, reliable and reputable!
You’ll be treated with respect, get a fair & square deal and get great customer service… Before, during and after the sale.
It’s hard to find an honest and reputable carpet store these days! That’s why I created my own special hand-picked list of carpet stores who are locally owned, give free estimates, offer fair prices, have knowledgeable staff, provide honest measuring and hire qualified installers. Homeowners want to know…Are there any reputable Carpet Stores Near Me?
Where are the best and worst places to buy new carpet?
“You need to buy from an honest and reputable carpet dealer! With over 30-years of hands-on experience in the Carpet business, I’ve learned that some Carpet stores are way more reputable than others, and some carpet sellers should be avoided at all costs!”
“Here’s how I rate various Carpet Retailers on a Scale of One to Five.”
#8 Nationally Advertised or BIG-BOX Carpet Retailers
1.5 Stars out of 5
These corporately-owned businesses blanket the airwaves with constant and repetitive TV commercials, radio ads, billboards and bus stops! They have locations all over the country. They offer unbelievable deals on new carpet and flooring, including low-cost or free carpet installation.
I don’t recommend buying carpet from Home improvement warehouses like Lowe’s and Home Depot because they only sell the materials to you. They make arrangements with various independent contractors to handle the in-home measuring and installation. They take their profit right off the top and never have to worry about dealing with any problems or complaints you may have after the sale.
“Should you have a carpet defect or installation issue, they may just tell you to contact the carpet manufacturer directly or call the installation company to seek a remedy.”
If you want to do-it-all-yourself and save a lot of money… create a detailed diagram of your home with all the room measurements and bring your truck, some rope and maybe a tarp if it is raining! These local dealers offer low prices and have dozens of rolls of carpet “in-stock”. They cater mostly to homeowners on a tight budget, landlords and property managers and D.I.Y. homeowners. They have plenty of inexpensive, lower-quality, defective or second-grade materials. Have them roll out the carpet before you agree to buy it to make sure there are no obvious defects. Check their guarantee carefully and get everything in writing before you sign on the dotted line. Once you buy it, you own it. no refunds.
The main problem when buying carpet from this type of retailer, is that they rarely have the same type, style or color of carpet available. That means if you need to buy more of the exact same carpet you bought today, it may not be available for you to buy tomorrow. Once a roll of carpet is sold, the same type, style and dye lot (color) may be gone forever. No two rolls of carpet are exactly the same. There will be differences in color or style that may be quite obvious once it is installed.
These dealers may offer in-house installation or they might just hand you a list of local installers for you to call and hire on your own. If you have to arrange for your own installation you must negotiate with the installer and pay them directly. In the end, if you pay just $8.99 per yard for the carpet, don’t expect it to last for 10 years. Even though you may get a great deal on discounted carpets, always remember that there was some reason why it was not able to be sold as first-quality goods. See which carpet stores I recommend near you
#6 Buying Carpet from a Carpet Layer
2.5 stars out of 5
Some carpet layers have longstanding relationships with local carpet dealers, or may have a way to order new carpet and padding at near wholesale prices from local suppliers. Carpet layers often end up with sizable leftovers from bigger carpet jobs because carpet so many salespeople over-measure their jobs.
When there is a lot of carpet leftover the installer may take it home and try to sell it on Craigslist or in your local newspaper. If you find an installer who has some leftover carpet or other flooring materials available at a very low price, you need to understand that they have a limited supply of those materials and have no way of getting any more of the exact same color or style. There is no manufacturer’s warranty on these materials whatsoever and no recourse if you end up unhappy with the performance.
Still, you can find some real bargains this way. As with any contractor you hire to do work on your property, I suggest you check references, verify their contractors license and business liability insurance to make sure they are all current and up-to-date. This might be an inexpensive way to go if you are just doing one or two rooms or if you need to replace carpet or flooring for a rental property.
#5 Franchised Carpet Resellers
2.5 Stars out of 5
These carpet dealers are often locally-owned but are hooked up with a national carpet distributor or co-op to increase their buying power and decrease their shipping costs. They usually use private labels to prevent you from comparison shopping at other carpet local stores. It is often much more difficult to get carpet specifications from these resellers, and it makes it much more difficult to comparison shop their products. Even so, you can still negotiate a fair deal if you know what you are doing and don’t rely on their salespeople to make choices for you.
Many co-ops do not provide installation so you may have to locate a good installation crew and pay them separately. You will have to work a bit harder to schedule and orchestrate everything, and may end up paying a little more buying from a franchised flooring dealer. but they usually have a list of local installers for you to call and they do offer a wide range of quality carpet and flooring products. Which carpet stores do you recommend near me?
#4 800-Carpet Wholesalers
2.5 Stars out of 5
These are carpet and flooring peddlers who will send you small carpet samples through the mail. They want you to buy their carpet virtually “sight unseen” (other than a small swatch) There are no refunds on discounted carpets so you really have to be fully aware of all the fine print. You can save money if you buy from a reputable carpet wholesaler as long as you know exactly what you are buying and fully understand how the entire carpet buying process works and what is expected of you, especially regarding the delivery of the carpet and what you are required to do if you need to return a roll of carpet.
Some 1-800 carpet outlets stores are reputable and some are not. The burden of being knowledgeable about your purchase falls solely upon you. Can I really buy new carpet at wholesale prices? Learn More
#3 Online Flooring Retailers
3 stars out of 5
Need Hardwoods, Ceramic Tile, Luxury Tile or Laminate Flooring? These online companies move a lot of product and can be a smart way to go if you are careful and do your homework. The biggest problem I hear about is the poor quality of the materials they offer. For example: If you buy hardwood flooring that is considered “Seconds” (cabin-grade?) it can be very difficult to install and the amount of warped, unusable or damaged product you receive can be significant and have as much as 25% waste or more.
Buying first-quality hardwoods is much more costly but the outcome is much better than if you buy a “cabin grade” product. It’s hard to know how much material to order when you have no Idea about the amount of unusable product they will be sending you. It can be a real nightmare when you have to re-order more materials because you did not have enough to finish the job due to the amount of unforeseen waste.
You can save money buying from an online flooring wholesaler as long as you know exactly what quality or grade of carpet you are buying and know in advance exactly how the entire buying process works from start to finish. Even so, you are taking your chances because you must trust what the salesperson tell you, of fails to tell you. Shipping costs can be high too and if you are not happy with the product you order you may have to pay dearly to ship it back and also pay a hefty re-stocking fee.
Some online flooring retailers are reputable and some are not, and knowing who to trust is the hard part. Even if you succeed in buying a good quality flooring at a discount, you still have to arrange for your own installation or install it yourself if you are so inclined. I highly suggest you read all their fine print and ask to see their return policy and restocking fees.
#2 Shop-at-Home Carpet Retailers
4.5 Stars out of 5
Many people love the convenience of not having to travel from store to store in search of the perfect type, color and style of carpet or flooring and prefer having samples brought to their home. It makes matching colors easier in your own home under the optimum lighting scenario.
Many locally-owned carpet dealers are now offering shop-at-home services and this can a smart way to go for those who don’t want to drive all around town and deal with conflicting and confusing salespeople.
There are a few nationally advertised shop-at-home flooring dealers that I do not recommend, like Empire Today, because they tend to push carpets made of polyester, have unreasonably high prices and use independent high-pressure salespeople. However, I believe that “in-home carpet shopping” is a wonderful service, especially for folks who have a hard time getting around.
There are many reputable shop-at-home carpet stores that offer quality products, have knowledgeable salespeople and reasonable prices. The shop-at-home for carpet concept is getting bigger and bigger!
Currently, I have many reputable shop-at-home carpet dealers listed in my Preferred Carpet Dealer Directory that I am happy to recommend, including The Carpet Guys who serve the metro Detroit Michigan area.
With a few remnants stood up along the back wall, some in-stock rolls of carpet on display, a neat and tidy showroom and a good selection of brand name carpet samples to choose from. These long-standing neighborhood carpet and flooring retailers buy first-quality goods directly from the carpet manufacturer, provide excellent customer service, have fair & square pricing, have knowledgeable and helpful staff and provide qualified installers. Should you ever have a problem or complaint they will do whatever it takes to ensure you are completely satisfied with your purchase.
Not all locally owned flooring dealers are honest and reputable. Over the past few years I have compiled my own “hand-picked” list of reputable locally-owned Carpet Dealers that I am proud to recommend to my readers. The dealers I recommend have passed my own set of strict rules and requirements before I list them in my directory. Where to buy new carpet and flooring? Which carpet stores are recommended near me?