Buying New Carpet at Wholesale Prices
By Alan Fletcher - Carpet Expert and Consumer Advocate
Discover Little-Known Secrets to Saving Big Money Buying Carpet Online or How to Buy New Carpet Directly from Carpet Re-sellers located near Dalton, Georgia.
However, it is buyer beware... You need to know how to do it right or you can end up holding the bag!
How to Buy New Carpet at Wholesale Prices
In this free article, I discuss the possibility of buying discount carpet from non-typical sources, including online and warehoused carpet re-sellers.
Special care must be taken to ensure you buy a carpet that will be suitable for your unique application and at a fair and square price. This is an area where there are great bargains to be had, but the utmost care should be taken to be sure you know what you are buying, who you are buying from, what the limitations and requirements are, and how to make wise and informed carpet buying choices.
You must also make it clear in your mind as to what your expectations are when choosing a new carpet for your home. Take my free Carpet Foot-Traffic Test to help determine what grade of carpet you need to select to meet you needs, goals and lifestyle.
Buying new carpet today is more challenging than ever. As far back as the early 60's, all retail carpet stores had an equal playing field, that is, they all had access to the same carpet brands and styles. Bigger stores typically had better buying power and could negotiate better prices from the carpet manufacturers. Smaller carpet stores had a harder time getting the best deals from the mills and had to focus harder on word-of-mouth reputation for great customer service and installations in order to compete.
Nothing was more frustrating to a carpet store owner than to spend two hours selling to Mrs. Jones only to end up losing the sale to the bigger carpet store down the street with a lower price. The only thing Mrs. Jones had to do was write down the name of the mill, the style name and color and take that information to the next carpet retailer down the street. Upon arrival, the next carpet store would easily be able to offer Mrs. Jones the exact same carpet for just a little bit less, and not have to spend two hours selling Mrs. Jones.
Even in the 70' and 80's all you really had to do was call around and ask what they charged for this or that carpet brand and style.
Retailers discovered that all they had to do was change the style and color name to make it very hard for consumers to shop for the best deals. The idea worked quite well since most customers didn't want to take the time and trouble to shop all around town carrying a pile of heavy samples in their arms trying to find the exact same carpet at a lower price somewhere else.
Today, most retailers use private labels to disguise the true style name and color numbers so consumers can't just call around to find the lowest price, and that means higher closing rates and increased profits for retailers who have adopted the practice.
You may say it's not fair that carpet retailers use private labels to confuse consumers but there are two sides to this story...
The Retailer's Point of View...
Most locally-owned and family run Carpet retailers offer free measuring and estimates. From the moment you walk into their store, the salesperson is ready and willing to spend as much time as it takes to help you select a new carpet that meets your needs, goals, lifestyle, and budget.
Here's the problem... If you take their free in-home estimate and measurement information and use it to buy the exact same carpet from another dealer down the street, you can see how that might not be very fair to salesperson who has taken several hours of their time to work with you, listen to all your needs and goals, show you samples and explain everything to you about the various products available, and then measure your home and prepare a detailed estimate for you.
This hard-working carpet salesperson will potentially not make a dime for all his efforts if you choose to buy from another dealer, who has no time invested in helping you, and who says they can do the same job with the same materials for a few dollars less. From the first salesperson's point of view, this can be very disappointing.
This is why carpet retailers started using private labels on their products. It makes it difficult, if not impossible for homeowners to comparison shop for identical carpets at another store.
The Homeowner's Point of View...
From a consumers' point of view, it is important for you to get at least three estimates in order to be sure you are getting a fair and square deal and then look at all three side by side to make the best choice. Still it will be a hard decision because there will be lots of variables and uncertainties.
Let me tell you a true story...
I once knew a very nice man named Gene who owned a small carpet store in a small town located on the Oregon Coast. He and his wife took such good care of their customers, it was amazing.
They really took customer service to the next level. If any customer was unhappy in any way, Gene and his wife would do whatever it took to make things right. Even if they had to refund all their money or totally replace all the materials and labor at their own expense. They would do whatever it took to make things right and make their customers happy and satisfied!
That's the kind of guy Gen and his wife were! It was amazing to me then and I am proud to have known them and worked for them decades ago. It set the stage for me to know what customer service really means!
Gene confided with me...
Gene once told me that he was fed up with local people who would ask him for a free estimate and a free in-home measure... only to use his free estimate and measuring information to buy new carpet from a dealer in the bigger city of Portland who had the exact same carpet for just a few dollars cheaper.
Gene became concerned that he was wasting his time and trouble by spending several hours trying to help local homeowners make wise and informed carpet buying choices, only to lose the sale to the larger dealers located in Portland, who could sell the exact same carpet at a lower price due to their increased buying power.
Gene was aware of the problem that it cost about $50 more in shipping costs to have a roll of carpet delivered from the big city of Portland to his local store located at the coast, almost a hundred miles away. The stores in Portland were able to avert this extra shipping cost and thereby offer his customers a lower overall price, also due to the fact that the installers from Portland agreed to deliver the carpet to all the coastal towns at no-charge to the Portland carpet retailers.
Gene finally solved the problem by intentionally shorting every free measure he provided to local coastal homeowners by a "just a few yards".
If the homeowner accepted his bid/estimate, he would simply add back the few missing yards of materials required to finish the job when submitting the order to the mill and take the small loss of a few dollars. It may have cost him $50 out of his own pocket to do this, but he felt it was worth extra cost.
However, if the customer tried to use his free provided carpet measurements to order new carpet from another carpet store, the other dealer would end up not ordering enough carpet to be able to finish the job. This made some homeowners very angry because it caused a lot of delays including significant time and expenses, including a delay in completing the job by as much as two weeks or more.
One customer who tried to take advantage of Gene's free measure and estimates and tried to use his free measurements at another dealer, did contact Gene well after the fact, to complain that the measurements Gene provided were not accurate and that they had to order more carpet just to finish the job.
While these homeowners were very angry about it, Gene got a good laugh because he accurately suspected they had every intention of exploiting his free in-home measurements to buy new carpet in Portland for a few dollars less.
Please Buy From a Locally Owned Carpet Retailer
Times have changed and many Carpet stores now charge a fee for measuring your home and no longer offer free measuring and estimates. This is true with Home Depot and Lowe's. I hear they are now asking for a $75 deposit that may be applied to the final bill if you decide to go with them, otherwise it is a non-refundable measuring fee. Add to that the private labeling aspect and it becomes very frustrating to try and find a good deal on new carpet these days.
Some of you may be tempted to buy from an Online Carpet Re-seller or from a Wholesale Carpet Warehouse in Georgia. Huge savings are there to be had, but you had better do your homework first. That's what this article is all about, how to save money on carpet without getting taken to the cleaners.
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