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Carpet Measuring Scams

By Alan J Fletcher - Carpet Expert and Consumer Advocate


Regarding the subject of trusting a carpet salesperson, whom should you trust to accurately measure your home to determine how much material you need to buy?


If you were to blindly trust a dishonest or inexperienced carpet salesperson to determine the proper measurements of your home, you could easily be overcharged for the amount of materials you need and overpay for the total cost of the job, including padding and installation. 


What is Carpet Over-Measuring?


Most two-bedroom homes require about 100 square yards of carpet, or 900 square feet. 

If you were to select a carpet that cost $20 per square yard installed,  for 100 yards your total price would be two thousand dollars. When the salesperson measures your home, all they have to do is tell you that you need 110 yards of carpet, your total price would be $2200.00, a difference of $200! It really is that easy to overcharge you for materials and labor, and it is very common!


Note:  Accurately measuring for carpet is a learned ability. An experienced carpet salesperson can save you a lot of money by efficiently and strategically measuring your home and utilizing material waste from one area and apply it in another area. In contrast, An inexperienced carpet salesperson can mistakenly over-measure and charge you hundreds more than necessary!


But even worse...  An unscrupulous carpet salesperson can intentionally over-measure you and thereby over-charging you by hundreds or more for materials and labor... and how you may never become aware of it. 


Any homeowner could easily be over-measured by 10, 20, 30 yards or more and never know it. This could easily cost you hundreds or even thousands more than necessary. You need to learn how to avoid this common carpet scam, and many other common carpet scams. 



Some Salespeople are Lousy at Measuring for Carpet. 


Measuring for carpet is an art! Some carpet salespeople are well trained and can save you the most money by measuring your home accurately. Some salespeople are lousy at measuring. Whether they are just bad at measuring, don't care or just make simple mistakes with their math, you shouldn't have to pay for more material than you actually require. 


The best way to avoid incompetent measuring job or an outright measuring scam is to get several estimates from several different sources. But realize this, it's not easy to know which estimate is the most accurate. You can't assume the lowest estimate is the most accurate. This is why I have created my own hand-picked list of locally owned Carpet Dealers. See who I recommend near you



Which carpet measurements are the most accurate?


In almost all cases, if you get three free carpet estimates, you will get three totally different measuring results. This is because measuring for carpet is really an art-form. Everyone measures a little bit differently. For example, some add carpet salespeople add an extra 5% for seaming while others add a few extra inches in material length for each room. But beware: the lowest measuring estimate is not always the most accurate so you have to be careful who's estimate you choose to trust, and ultimately agree to purchase.


Some salespeople will not want to show you their measurements or give you a complete copy of the diagrams they have created, but instead will try to convince you to agree to "One Price for the Whole Job". 


You should always ask for the measurement totals and make sure you know exactly what you are being charged for each separate item: cost of the carpet, the pad, the installation, any extra fees and charges. Some dealers resist giving a detailed invoice, but at the very least you must receive a sales receipt or invoice that shows the cost of the carpet (how much per square yard or square foot) shown separate from the cost of the padding and installation. 


Why? A sales receipt showing the cost of the carpet separate from the cost of padding and installation will be required by the carpet manufacturer should you ever have a need to file a warranty claim.  The sales receipt or invoice must show exactly how much you paid (per square yard or by square foot) for the carpet material alone. 



Carpet Measuring Suggestions: 


If your are unsure about the amount of carpet your home requires, you might be wise to pay a small fee of $40 to $75 to hire an independent carpet installer to measure your home. The bigger your home, the more it will cost to have a carpet installer come by and measure it for you. 


Be sure to ask for a simple diagram showing the best seam placements.  You can also ask about various installation options you may consider such as: types and colors of of doorway transitions available, best nap direction, custom stair and upholstering options, etc. 



Experienced Carpet Installers


You can learn a lot from a seasoned carpet installer. Their knowledge and experience differs greatly from most retail carpet salespeople. Why? Carpet installers have years of hands-on experience with all types of carpet in many applications. Many carpet installers with more than 20 years of experience, know a lot about the durability and longevity of various types and styles of carpet. 


On the other hand, many retail carpet salespeople obtain their product knowledge from manufacturer brochures and from reading flooring trade publications. They often lack sufficient hands-on experience to advise homeowners and are better trained at closing the sale then they are able to provide accurate and useful carpet and flooring product information and advice. You can also learn how to measure for carpet yourself. 



Proper Carpet Care and Maintenance


Make sure you get and read a complete copy of the manufacturers carpet warranty and follow the care and maintenance suggestions to the letter. Pay close attention to the periodic carpet cleaning required and accurate record keeping requirements. Many carpet manufacturers warranties are available for download online.


How often should I have my carpets cleaned?  


Carpet Cleaning Cost



Learn More...


Carpet Measuring Scams, how to measure for carpet, carpet measuring, bad carpet measures, Accurate carpet measurements. How an inexperienced carpet salesperson can over-measure your home and end up charging you hundreds more than necessary!




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