Restore or Replace Carpet: What’s the Better Value?
Should I Replace My Carpet?
Many a homeowner, apartment manager, or realtor has been faced with this question: Should I replace my carpet? Most people think their only options are:
- (A) Shop for a new carpet, strain your mind with geometry (likely for the first time since high school) to know exactly how many square feet you will need to purchase, double-check your math because “it couldn’t really be that much, could it?”, and finally shudder to realize you have to repeat the process for every room to make your home uniform.
- (B) Live with the stain, tear, or discoloration every day.
In the choice between putting a serious dent in the emergency fund or being dissatisfied with your home, neither of the above options is going to leave the homeowner very happy.
What Is Carpet Restoration?
Let’s focus on one hypothetical homeowner, Lois. She has a 5-bedroom home that she shares with her husband, three kids, and two dogs. Much to Lois’ dismay, her husband’s friends spilled drinks in his man-cave, her two oldest children are always dragging in dirt from practicing sports outside, and her youngest discovered the joys of finger-painting. And of course, even the best-trained dogs still have some accidents.
Lois already rented a steam cleaner, but it had little effect on heavier traffic areas from her young athletes, couldn’t remove the paint, and the stains in the man cave came back up after a week. Even worse, she notices a lingering pet odor throughout the home.
Debating replacing her carpet, Lois searches online, and is surprised by what she finds: a company claiming that all her carpet needs is a little TLC to look as good as new. This is not carpet cleaning, but carpet restoration: a series of powerful cleans, repairs, and treatments to bring what seemed to be a lost cause back to life.
Cost of Carpet Restoration vs. Replacing
Let’s say this is Lois’ home. It has 2,171 square feet of carpeting, about average for a 5-bedroom house plan. If she chooses to replace with a mid-grade carpet, around $2.50 per square foot, it will cost Lois around $5,400 to replace her carpet!
Instead, Lois decides to opt for restoration. Let’s break down her estimated costs:
- Complete steam clean at $30/room or area x 12: $360
- Soil removal and brightening in the man-cave: $25
- Traffic removal in the living areas: $40
- Patch paint in bedroom: $15
- Pet stain and odor treatment: $60
The total cost for Lois to restore her carpet comes out to $500. The savings over replacing her carpet come out to $4,900 or about 90%!
Cost to Restore = $500, or About 10% of $5,400 Cost to Replace
What’s The Verdict?
Lois’ hypothetical situation above isn’t out of the ordinary: In a strong majority of cases it will save a homeowner hundreds if not thousands of dollars to restore carpet instead of replacing it. While quality, material, and other factors about your carpet may effect this, you deserve to know all of your options before you spend hundreds or thousands more than you need to.
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