Choosing a new carpet for your home or apartment is an exciting process that requires careful thought and planning. The carpet you select will have a major impact on your living space’s look, feel, and functionality. Making the wrong choice can lead to regrets as you live with a carpet that is impractical, uncomfortable, or doesn’t match your décor.
To help you avoid carpet-buying mistakes, this article will outline the mistakes to avoid when shopping for new flooring.
8 Mistakes Everyone Makes When Buying Carpets
Mistake #1: Neglecting Lifestyle and Usage
One of the most common carpet buying mistakes is failing to consider your household’s lifestyle and how the space will be used. Your choice of carpet should suit the traffic level, activities, and other usage factors unique to you. Here are some key points to keep in mind:
- Overlooking High-Traffic Areas: Entryways, hallways, stairs, and common areas endure the most wear. Opt for low-pile runner carpets or sturdier fibers like nylon in high-traffic zones.
- Considering Pets: Pets can be rough on carpets. Look for stain-resistant fibers if you have household animals. Also, opt for low, tight pile carpets, which are easier to clean.
- Accommodating Your Lifestyle: Active families with kids and frequent gatherings should select durable, stain-resistant carpets in darker colors to hide dirt. Formal living rooms can indulge in plush, luxurious carpets since they endure less activity.
Mistake #2: Ignoring Carpet Fiber Types
With a wide range of carpet fibers available, it’s essential to understand the pros and cons of each when selecting your new flooring:
- Nylon: Nylon is extremely durable and resistant to stains/wear. They are very easy to clean. The drawbacks are price and static.
- Polyester: These carpets are stain-resistant and affordable but less durable than nylon.
- Wool: Enjoy wool carpets’ luxurious, comfortable, and soil-resistant surface.
- Olefin: This is one of the affordable and stain-resistant carpets, but it is not as durable or plush as other fibers.
Mistake #3: Not Considering Carpet Padding
The padding beneath your carpet is crucial for comfort, noise reduction, and durability. But many buyers neglect to put thought into this important under layer. Here’s what you need to know about carpet pad benefits:
- Cushioning Ability: Thicker pads feel better underfoot but cost more. Thinner padding is more affordable.
- Noise Reduction: The right pad insulates against sound transfer. Look for a high-density pad.
- Durability and Performance: Choosing an improper pad can void carpet warranties if shifting occurs.
Mistake #4: Disregarding Carpet Maintenance
Proper maintenance is required to keep your carpet looking good and extend its lifespan. If you fail to maintain it, you’ll likely replace your flooring earlier.
- Vacuuming: Frequent vacuuming removes dirt, allergens, and debris trapped in carpet fibers. Neglecting this can shorten carpet life.
- Professional Cleaning: Periodic deep cleaning by professionals refreshes carpet appearance and removes stubborn stains.
- Daily Care: Spot clean spills immediately to prevent staining and treat high-traffic areas to reduce wear.
Mistake #5: Prioritizing Aesthetics Over Functionality
Carpet’s appearance understandably plays a significant role in the selection process. However, emphasizing style over functionality can backfire over time. Here are some tips for balancing aesthetics and practicality:
- Prioritize Performance: Prioritize durability, fiber type, and other functional factors before aesthetics.
- Complement Your Decor: Once key criteria are met, narrow options to carpets that enhance your decor.
- Beware of Trends: Neutral solids offer flexibility while color and pattern trends come and go.
Mistake #6: Not Setting a Budget
Failing to set a clear budget before shopping leads many buyers to overspend. Get a handle on what you can realistically afford:
- Measure Square Footage: Use room dimensions to calculate the total square area you must cover.
- Estimate Installation Costs: Factor in charges for installation, materials, and labor.
- Set Your Budget Limit: Research price ranges for preferred fiber types and colors.
Mistake #7: Skipping Professional Installation
Proper carpet installation is crucial for appearance, performance, and longevity. Don’t make these amateur DIY mistakes:
- Incorrect Seam Placement: Seams must run perpendicular to doorway openings for a perfect floor look.
- Improper Stretching: The carpet must be stretched tightly and secured correctly along the edges for a smooth look.
- Damaged Materials: Inexperienced installers can accidentally rip or tear carpet.
Mistake #8: Impulse Buying
A rushed carpet purchase often leads to regret. Avoid these impulse buying mistakes:
- Buying Without Research: Fully research fiber types, pricing, warranties, and reviews first.
- Relying on Eyeball Estimates: Precisely measure your square footage and get installer quotes in writing.
- Focusing on Pattern Only: Also vet options for durability, stain resistance, comfort, and warranties.
Selecting a new carpet requires balancing aesthetic appeal, lifestyle needs, and budget realities. Avoid the eight mistakes outlined above, and you’ll set yourself up for a comfortable, functional, and beautiful floor covering you’ll enjoy for years.
Carefully measure rooms, research options, read warranties, and enlist professional installers for the best results. With some attention and care, you’ll avoid mistakes and buy the perfect carpet for your place.