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Tips for Consumers: Carpet Cleaning, How to Get Your Money's Worth
Tips for Consumers
How to Get Your Money's Worth
If you plan to clean your carpet this season, you may want to give careful thought to who will be doing the job. Is it a do-it-yourself project or is it best left to a professional?
"If you are seeking a professional carpet cleaning service, be sure to do your homework," said Angie Barnett, president & CEO of BBB of Greater Maryland. "With so many choices and advertised prices that run the gamut, you want to be sure you are getting your money's worth. Last year alone, over 3,000 consumers checked with our BBB at www.bbb.org for reliability reports on carpet cleaning companies. Consumers should be certain to check with BBB before they select a service provider to find a business they can trust."
Your Better Business Bureau offers the following tips to help your search go more smoothly:
* To find a reputable company, ask around. Ask your family, friends and neighbors who they use to clean their carpets and who they would recommend to others.
* Visit www.bbb.org for a reliability report on the company.
* Price does matter. The lowest price is not always the best price. While no one wants to be overcharged, extremely low prices should also set off warning signals. Companies that advertise very low prices may be practicing what is called "bait" advertising. Once the workers arrive in your home, they quickly suggest a more expensive treatment for the cleaning. Ask exactly what is included in the price and be sure to get it in writing before the crew begins any work.
* Find out what you get for your money. Just as pricing can differ from company to company, so can the services included in the price and what the company considers "extras." What type of cleaning agent does the company use and exactly how does it work? Will the cleaning company move furniture and return it to its original location? If so, is there an extra charge for this service? What about pre-treating spots and heavily soiled areas? Are there extra charges for high traffic areas? What if you are not happy with the cleaning? Is your satisfaction guaranteed?
* Inquire about the company's employees. After all, these are the people who will be coming into your home. Find out if the company uses its own employees or do they sub-contract the job out to other companies? Are they bonded and insured? Who is responsible if the crew damages the carpet or other items in your home?
* Find out what care is required after the cleaning. How long will it take to dry? What kind of ventilation is needed? Can you get a written guarantee?
To file a complaint visit: www.baltimore.bbb.org or write: BBB, 1414 Key Highway, #100, Baltimore MD 21230. Their office serves Baltimore and all of Greater Maryland.
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