Carpet Buying Wisdom

If you don’t know carpet, make sure you know your carpet dealer.

Following are some nuggets of flooring wisdom I’ve picked up over the years. I’ve seen, heard, and read a lot, but these basics can make a difference for you:

1 – There is no such thing as free labor… ever. Anyone who would work for free shouldn’t be in your home or office. Anyone who would mislead a customer by promoting “free labor” shouldn’t be, and probably won’t stay, in business.

2 – There is no such thing as an invisible seam. Check out the Carpet & Rug Institute’s standards for residential installations.

3 – There is no “stain-proof” carpet… only varying degrees of stain-resistance. But it’s getting better year-by-year. Heck, you really can pour bleach on a solution-dyed olefin and it won’t take the color out. But track in some dirty axle grease on the same carpet and you’re in trouble.

4 – There are no miracle fibers. Re-read #3. Of course, I’ll be the first to bow in the presence of any self-cleaning, stain-proof, musically-gifted fiber!

5 – There is no such thing as a real 70% off. I love this one. Can’t you hear the cheesey, plaid-suited sales manager now? “Hey, Bubba, let’s mark everything up a couple hundred percent and have a sale!”  Of course, PT Barnum did say it best, there’s a sucker born every minute. Those folks play a numbers game and it goes like this – sell once and hope the job goes right, forgetting about loyalty and referral sales.

6 – The life of a carpet depends upon your lifestyle (but don’t forget the pad!) Think about this one for a minute – I have 3 beautiful children, ages 7, 8 and 11, and a gorgeous, 75-lb german shepherd “puppy.” The same dense, excellently-made, high-twist, Stainmaster fiber will not perform identically in my home when compared to a 50-year-old couple with no children and a cat. But we can shoot for the best performance and stack the deck in your favor by combining the right pad, fiber and construction, with your lifestyle.

7 – Installation is everything! An unprofessional, poorly-trained installer can ruin the best of floors.

I hope these tidbits do help you. When I first started in the business, I actually made the mistake of promulgating some misconceptions… because I believed them. But time and a conscience taught me that to build a solid business, based on referrals from loyal customers, I needed to stay far from any claim that seemed to good to be true. The end result? For the last 3 of 11 years before selling my first business, the vast majority of clients came from word-of-mouth referalls from satisfied, loyal clients.
Now that’s something to hang your hat on!


Chris Moline
Residential Group Manager
Commercial Carpets of America &
Alexandria Carpet One Floor & Home

Not ashamed to be a tree-hugger!

Not ashamed to be a tree-hugger!

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