Avoid Common Carpet Cleaning Scams
Sadly, carpet cleaning, like most other trades, is open to unscrupulous people. If you’re thinking of getting your carpets cleaned, this article will help you avoid becoming a victim of these scams which either result in you getting a really dreadful carpet clean, that will damage your carpet, or trick you out of a lot of money.
The first, and by far the biggest scam today is the ‘Bait & Switch’ scam.
it’s been around for decades. It has been shown on BBC’s Watchdog and Rogue Traders and it goes like this…
You are offered an extremely cheap carpet cleaning, via a leaflet or phone call, or online.
Typically the offer is 3 rooms for £35 or something similar.
This is the bait to get you hooked.
It Can’t Be Done!
The fact is that NO ONE can clean your carpets properly for this amount of money. But they don’t intend to…
it’s usual that you’re sent a letter or email confirming your appointment and quote.
This will contain additional information that specifies that if your carpet is showing signs of soiling, it may need additional treatments, such as Chevy duty pre-clean, texturing (there’s no such thing), and other treatments. when they arrive, your carpet will need these treatments.
This letter will include a price for these in pence per square foot so that it seems a small amount, and it’s difficult to work out the actual cost.
This is the switch to a high price.
By the time they’ve finished, your £35 clean has become hundreds of pounds.
If you say you only want the original £35 clean, they’ll drench your carpets and be gone in 10 minutes. When your carpets finally dry, they’ll look worse and probably be permanently damaged.
You can’t complain because they told you it needed the extra treatments and you insisted they do an unsuitable clean.
If you send them away, well, there’s a £35 cancellation fee.
If you refuse to pay, they’ll take you to court and win. It’s all set up so that you can’t win NO MATTER WHAT YOU DO.
Just don’t fall for it in the first place.
Remember, if the price seems so low it’s too good to be true, it probably is!
Another scam is the half-price offer.
Now, I’m not saying all half price offers are scams. That’s simply not the case. We at ACS do an introductory half-price offer for you to try our services. I know other carpet cleaners do similar things.
What I’m talking about is the ‘always on’ half-price offer.
Their prices are ALWAYS half price. Check out their website or advertising. It’s always half price. This is actually illegal because the half-price is actually THE price they charge all the time.
So you’re not getting a half-price offer, you’re getting their usual price disguised as half price. Very sneaky.
Scam Stain Protector
The final common scam is the Carpet Stain Proof scam.
Again, it’s based on a very useful and important carpet cleaning service. But it’s turned into a con.
There are many different types of stain protector treatments. There are stain protectors, stain retardants, stain repellents, acid dye blockers, and more. There are many brands too. Some well-known ones are Scotchgard, Teflon, and Guardsman. These are fine products and are very effective, although they are also very expensive. There are also nano stain retardants that are effective and cost much less.
The scam is to put silicone (because it looks milky and can be termed stain repellent) into a bottle and spray this onto your carpet.
It costs them pennies, and because it can repel some stains, it can be argued that is it a stain repellent. The trouble is that it will ruin your carpet.
Silicone is very sticky, and everything will stick to it, making your carpet dirtier than ever in no time.
They won’t care. They made more money and are long gone.
All of these scams can be avoided by just taking a step back and thinking.
If the price seems too low, it could well be a Bait & Switch con.
When it’s a special offer it must have an end date, not run all the time.
When the person offers you a stain protector, don’t accept silicone. If it’s really cheap, it probably won’t work.
If in any doubt, leave it out.
Of course, there are a lot of really good carpet cleaners around. Most are honest and mean well. But knowing what to look for can go a long way to helping you avoid the less-well-meaning ones.
If you would like a really good carpet clean at a very reasonable price, please get in touch today.
My very best to you.