Here, we’ll look at underhand tactics that are common in the carpet cleaning industry:
Those unbelievable deals you come across online should be taken with a pinch of salt. Be wary of the stunningly low prices, as you might be walking into a trap. The fact is that carpet cleaning requires resources and skilled personnel to be done fast and appropriately. When the price is low, then it is an indicator of shortcuts being taken. The company may be relying on rookies to provide the carpet cleaning service, or working with low capacity machinery that was cheap to obtain – but ends up not delivering a deep clean. This would force you to have the process repeated, and end up costing you much more in the long run.
There are also companies that offer prices below the market rates because they are not insured. Granted, insurance premiums are pricy, and can eat into the profitability of the carpet cleaning company. However, they are an industry practice geared to protecting the company and the clients receiving the services from liabilities should there be accidents during the carpet cleaning. While the company can put in place stringent safety protocols during the process, it is not a 100% guarantee that an accident won’t occur – hence the need for sufficient insurance coverage, catering to the client’s property, and the company’s machinery and carpet cleaning crew.
Here, the carpet cleaning personnel get you to agree to the service, but once they arrive at your property, they start hiking the price. From claims of the “carpet being too large to be covered by the initial-agreed price”, to stubborn stains that “need more attention than they had anticipated” – these all end up forcing you to dig deeper into your pocket.
To avoid such ordeals, it is insisted that you always get a written quotation, with a detailed breakdown of everything that will be covered. Ensure that you get all this clarified before the carpet cleaning crew so much as plug in their vacuum to start the task.
To avoid the bait and switch tricks when hiring the carpet cleaning services, ensure that you ask quality questions about how the services are being delivered. What is covered in the charges? From the vacuuming, moving the furniture, pre-spotting treatments, odour removal – what effect will they have on the price? In case the company representative appears dodgy and not forthcoming with straight answers, then this will be a red flag. Here are some of the excuses that are common with the bait-and-switch stations:
- The carpet is made of a special type of material, which will need a more complex method for the cleaning
- The stains on the carpet are more difficult, and will require a different formulation to remove them, which will be more extensive
- The carpet is heavily soiled, so the basic service that had been agreed on won’t be effective.
- The quoted price was for traffic lanes, and working on the whole rooms will cost you more.
- The odd shape of the room – or it having a larger size than anticipated, will require you to be charged more.
Refusing to agree to the additional charges often results in the providers just carrying out the ‘Basic service’ which is essentially simply removing the surface soiling and sloshing some carpet cleaning solution on the unit. You end up with a carpet that still has loads of grime and stains, where you will need to bring in another carpet cleaning company to rectify the situation.
Such claims are one of the reasons why it is recommended that you have an in-person visit by the representative of the carpet cleaning company to carry out an inspection of the carpets that are to be worked on, and give you an accurate quotation. While quotes over the phone will give a range of how much the services will cost, the visit will enable you to have all the nitty-gritty cleared up before you agree to hire the company.
While the carpet cleaning company may be promoting a refund or free clean up in case of complaints after the process, all through to the ‘get your money back’ guarantees, you need to go through the contract in detail. These tricky deals often have hidden clauses that negate the deal, and plenty of criteria to meet for you to be covered by the warranty. You don’t want to find yourself in a precarious position – so don’t be quick to sign up for the carpet cleaning service until you are well-versed and comfortable with the terms of the guarantee.
This refers to those random carpet cleaning individuals or crews that show up at your door and offer the services for free or at really low rates. Sure, it can be the sales representative or a legit local company looking to build up a rapport within the community. Things get fishy when you try to look up the company online, or ask about the licensing and registration. Such companies whose liability cannot be independently verified can end up being a nightmare for you.
It can be a tempting offer – they give the carpet a quick clean – even being done in just fifteen minutes, saving you the hassle of doing it yourself. They may even offer to work on the furniture and upholstery in addition to the carpet cleaning. It looks like the perfect opportunity, and you get to save loads of bucks, right? They leave, leaving you with the freshly cleaned carpet, with your pocket barely feeling a dent – but was the carpet cleaning truly without cost?
Such instances often turn out to be a security issue. The “cleaners” were basically scoping out your home, checking out where things are place and getting a layout of the residence. A couple of weeks later, they break into your home. Always remember that if it is too good to be true, that’s because it’s probably is. Ensure that you only engage with licenced carpet cleaning companies, that have a track record that you can independently look up.