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