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It’s a confusing world out there. Well, in flooring, at least. But you’ve come this far – you weighed the pros and cons of all the flooring options and you’ve settled on buying carpet. Congratulations! Now all you have to do is wade through the approximately 300,000 options and make a decision.
It’s lucky you have us because we’re going to help you pare down your options to find the best carpet for your space. How? Well, we’re going to briefly consider your fiber options and construction – what it is and how it’s made will help choose the perfect flooring for your space. We’ll address some of the questions you need to ask when buying carpet and then we’ll let you in on what mistakes to avoid when choosing your new floor.
CHOOSING THE BEST CARPET FOR YOUR SPACE.
We’re going to repeat this general idea a lot here – the fiber used and the construction of the strand will figure a fair amount in deciding which product to choose when buying carpet. Some carpet will be way more durable and therefore far better for areas that take a lot of foot traffic. Conversely a rough, low pile carpet, though incredibly durable, won’t be the best choice for a space where you, your family or your pets like to spend a lot of time lazing on the floor.
Nylon is perhaps the most used fiber in carpet construction. It's got excellent texture retention, is very soft and can be used in both plush and loop styled carpet.
Partially derived from corn sugar, Triexta has incredible anti-stain properties and is reliable and resilient carpet choice.
Almost as soft as nylon and twice as stain resistant, olefin is popular for low profile loop carpets. Consider olefin for areas that receive a lot of sunlight, indoor/outdoor rooms and basements.
Polyester holds bright, vibrant colours and is hypoallergenic.Best used in areas that don't receive a lot of foot traffic, polyester is also considered an eco-friendly flooring option as it's made out of recycled plastic.
Due to the density and amount of twist, a cut pile carpet is super durable and will hold it's original shape which is great for rooms with a lot of traffic.
In standard, multi and cut-loop styles, berber carpets are made up of low loops which add stability. If you're buying carpet for your basement, den or dining room a loop pile might be your best bet.
Created the same way as a cut pile, a frieze carpet has a looser pile and it loomed longer and thinner than a more traditional shag carpet.
WHAT TO ASK YOUR RETAILER
The decision on where you’re buying carpet is almost as important as your carpet choice. You’re looking for great sales support, professional installation crews and a place that will make your carpet purchase journey an adventure instead of an ordeal. There are a few things we suggest you ask any potential retailer you’re considering.
- Find out how long they’ve been in business. We know every business started at the beginning at some point but a retailer with some years behind them likely have some years in front of them. Not only is this great from a customer’s perspective – good service and good installations will keep them in business – but if you encounter trouble with your purchase you’ll be able to contact your original retailer. This also increases the chances of finding the same product you originally had installed.
- What’s included in the price? When buying carpet find out what’s included in the per square foot price. In general, to have carpet installed you need to buy the carpet, underpad and labour. Some retailers include a complete price, carpet pad and install all in one advertised price. Generally, however, since underpad comes in different weights and labour costs change depending on flat work vs. stairs carpet is priced by style and underpad and installation are extra cost considerations.
- What company handles the installation? This is so, so important. Ideally, the answer is that the same company that is selling you the carpet is also doing the installation. Hired out subcontractors aren’t a problem, just more of an inconvenience if you encounter trouble with your installation. If your installers work for your retailer you can contact your retailer directly and, regardless of whether or not the original installer is still there, have you carpet repaired.
- Are you and your installation crews insured and bonded? Keep in mind that buying carpet and having it installed requires people coming in and working in your home. Carpet installation is a home renovation and, though rare, damage can happen. Finding out that your retailers are covered is simply added insurance for the homeowner.
- References! See if your retailer has references on hand for you to see. Most places now have online reviews and the internet is a wonderful tool to find out the customer’s perspective on both the retailer and the installation.
COMMON MISTAKES TO AVOID WHEN BUYING CARPET
We’ve met a lot of people and sold a lot of carpet over the years. When buying carpet we find that most people get spiderwebbed in the same things.
You’ll find out quickly that carpet comes in ounce weights but that is not the defining factor in the quality of carpet. You want to check in on the fiber, construction, density, warranty, etc…
While you’re looking into that, make sure you’re choosing a carpet that is suitable for your lifestyle. A big family with a bunch of pets and lots of foot traffic will undoubtedly have different needs than a small family with low foot traffic who lives in a sunny climate. Talk to your salesperson about your lifestyle to make sure you’re getting the right product.
Finally, don’t be stingy on the underpad. Yes, higher density underpad does cost a little more but, at the end of it, your carpet is only as good as the underpad you’ve chosen. A high density underpad will minimize the impact on your carpet, increasing the lifespan of your purchase.
SO THERE YOU ARE…
We can’t tell you every single thing we know about buying carpet. We’d be here until the end of time if we did. Hopefully what we’ve given you here is a brief guide that will help you when buying carpet. If you have any questions or need any advice we really encourage you to contact us – we’re so happy to help in any way we can! If you’d rather meet us schedule your free in-home estimate here – we’re extra charming in person.
If you’re looking for a little carpet buying inspiration, browse through some of our manufacturers. Mohawk, Shaw and Beaulieu are just some of the leading flooring manufacturers that we proud to be partnered with.
The Easiest Way To Buy Flooring