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How much do you charge for carpet stretching ?

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Re: How much do you charge for carpet stretching ?

Post by milspec6 on Sun Mar 20, 2016 9:26 am

Another twist on this topic.

There will always be someone cheaper than you, it is just important that they are also not better than you.

Take those theater seats.  They went with me due to the cheaper price.  Had I not provided good service and results, he would still be cleaning them.

A Supervisor of mine hired a guy to clean his basement instead of me, because it was $40 cheaper.  He called me today and said that he wanted me to re-clean it when I had time.

That cleaner left marks on the staircase walls that required painting due to just dropping his hoses down the steps.  The carpet was also soaked and now all the stains have wicked back up.

That cleaner was cheaper, so he got the job, but he was not better, so he will not get it ever again. There is no reason to try and compete with his pricing....he is no threat.

In the case of Freemind and maybe myself, there is "A Guy" who stretches carpets in the area. He is both cheap and sounds like he is also competent. So, rather than fight him over price, it would make more sense to use him as a subcontractor.

Set "your" price for stretching and then sub him out for "his" low price...pocket the difference. I am going that route, but I still want to learn this stuff for future usage.
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Re: How much do you charge for carpet stretching ?

Post by Davey Cracker on Sun Mar 20, 2016 11:32 am

Great example, of you get what you pay for, and get things you don't want like messed up walls when going for the deal.  Luckily around here, a lot of homeowners are smart enough to realize that, making them willing to pay more for quality, avoiding the damage to their property and other problems that come along with using that cheap guy. But they don't just say I'm willing to pay more, it's our job to ask for more, and be able to justify and provide that better service that's worth more money...............again, don't sell yourselves short, and just assume the customer won't pay more...how do you really know unless you ask, you don't!!!

So the guy thought he would save $40, but probably had to then pay another $200 for the painting/damage repair.  And now he's willing to pay you to do the job right, Rob.........which is prob another $150-200 bucks, so that $40 savings has ended up costing him $3-400 more, not to mention all the hassle, wasted time, inconvenience, musty smelling over wet carpet...........don't sound like such a good deal now after all! laughing
Hopefully he has learned his lesson.

I guess I was lucky, young and dumb so I wasn't hard headed and not willing to listen and learn when I first got into this biz.
If you're stuck in that mind set, unteachable that there's possibly a better way, and unwilling to hear what's being said, then you might be better off moving on to just working for someone else?.....there's something to be said for that steady pay check and benefits, right? Bouncing Ball

beat a dead horse

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Re: How much do you charge for carpet stretching ?

Post by Davey Cracker on Sun Mar 20, 2016 12:03 pm

That post^^ towards the end, certainly wasn't directed at anyone in particular, just a general statement towards the cleaning community, because it's become pretty apparent to me being around forums for awhile, that there's many cleaners that are being held back by their own low end thinking and excuses........again, just trying to help.  But like they say, you can't make the horse drink after leading it to the water..........although I said it backwards, maybe you get the point. silent


Last edited by Davey Cracker on Sun Mar 20, 2016 6:25 pm; edited 1 time in total

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Re: How much do you charge for carpet stretching ?

Post by Freemind1 on Sun Mar 20, 2016 2:00 pm

In the same vein, I've heard cleaners for the last three years, preach about running a business as if it is the same in every place.

That's just simply not true. We tend to get tunnel vision, because we have a certain amount of success. If what we thought was actually true, and was, what's stopping everyone from franchising to every market? The claim of "I can/do, do it, so anyone can if they have the nads" is an extension of our own ego.

I'm not saying this to be a know it all or a jerk. It's just a fact that everyone can't charge the same and offer the same service to every single market. People making 10 bucks an hour can't afford a $500 cleaning bill. They are living on credit to get by, and dirty carpets WILL be ignored at those prices. People scoffed at 50 bucks a room with a 100 minimum.
There are not enough people in my area willing and able to pay it, to run a business like that here. There are already three carpet cleaning companies here, and NONE of them are expensive. The most prominent one offers fire/smoke/water and is locked in with all the insurance companies.

The newest guy here is a 25 bucks a room guy with "free scotch guard". Been at it a year or so now.

I know how long it takes me to clean a room. I know about putting my all and best effort into giving the customer all I can for their money. For 25 bucks, I'll work for someone else first. Then I don't have money sunk in overheads to make 10 bucks an hour and pay uncle same 20-30% of it. Van's cost money. Truck mounts cost money. Everything is an expense. With window cleaning, at this point, my expenses including taxes is about 25%. I consistently average 100 bucks an hour. I constantly work with good clients. Clients that repeat multiple times a year. So that $500 invoice repeats 2-4 times a year. No more of the people that call you once, and call you again in 3-5 years.

People here just DON'T value carpet cleaning. The market is run by cheap cleaners.
Anyone is welcome though, to pack up and move here. I'd welcome someone hanging out their shingle here and raising the bar.

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Re: How much do you charge for carpet stretching ?

Post by Davey Cracker on Sun Mar 20, 2016 6:21 pm

".....as if it is the same in every place."

I'm sure it's not the same in every market, and wouldn't expect it to be, really.
My point is, and regardless of your market, is that you can be the high end guy, rather than fighting the dummy's cutting their own throats who will soon be out of biz........it just takes a different way of thinking, and being able to back that higher cost up by being knowledgeable and educated about what you do, giving the customer confidence in you, and then providing that better service making you worth the higher cost.
What city is it you're in there in CO, James?.........I'd like to compare.  


From what you've said, it sounds like you've made a great choice going to windows.

I'm curious, since this is a carpet stretching thread, if you also provided that service when you were doing floor cleaning?

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Re: How much do you charge for carpet stretching ?

Post by ACpower1 on Sun Mar 20, 2016 8:08 pm

some areas you can buy a nice home for 50k, some areas like mine 500k might buy you 900sqft that needs work.

the salaries are usually right in line with the housing costs, some people here get paid 150k for computer/tech work but their living expenses are through the roof and they sit in a lot of traffic everyday.

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Re: How much do you charge for carpet stretching ?

Post by Davey Cracker on Sun Mar 20, 2016 8:44 pm

Thank you, and exactly the point I was trying to make.^^^.........but apparently failed at.


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Re: How much do you charge for carpet stretching ?

Post by dp1 on Sun Mar 20, 2016 8:59 pm

I believe every area has bigger homes and higher income household, I've lived in San Jose, CA where one neighborhood is full with crappy apartments ( I used to live in one ) and the next street over is 10 - 20 years old homes 4 - 5 bedrooms 2 story.
I believe there is a market for everyone, this is the USA after all, the land of opportunity, you can't make it to the top overnight unless you win a lottery.
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Re: How much do you charge for carpet stretching ?

Post by Davey Cracker on Sun Mar 20, 2016 9:54 pm

And you too, DP!!......You guys are great and say in 30-40 words, what I can't with my damn book long 10 thousand word post.  Getting my thoughts or point across in text has never been one of my strong suits. laughing

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Re: How much do you charge for carpet stretching ?

Post by Freemind1 on Mon Mar 21, 2016 7:48 am

@Davey Cracker wrote:

From what you've said, it sounds like you've made a great choice going to windows.

I'm curious, since this is a carpet stretching thread, if you also provided that service when you were doing floor cleaning?

As I said before, no I didn't offer. I didn't know how to do it or repairs. But IF I felt I could have made a business with CCing, I would have learned it and trained for it.

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Re: How much do you charge for carpet stretching ?

Post by Davey Cracker on Mon Mar 21, 2016 12:15 pm

FReemind,
Sorry, I guess I missed you saying you didn't do repairs/stretching, previously. Also, I thought for some reason you were in CO, but DP told me he thought you might be in TN?

But did you ever do a cleaning job, where you saw ripples on the carpet, pet damage, or carpet pulled away from a threshold or was pushing up ripples as you were cleaning???.......that's a question to everyone!
I can't hardly believe, that poorly installed and stretched in new carpet only happens here in CA. It seems here, a lot of installers only use a kicker when doing an install, and as a result, there's many 2-5 year old carpets rippled all over the palace, around here.......I''d guess upwards of 10-20% of them can use some attention here.......but like I previously said, very few customers will ask if you can do that for them, but most are very receptive when you tell them you can solve their problems by repairing or stretching their several thousand dollar carpet investment.

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Re: How much do you charge for carpet stretching ?

Post by ACpower1 on Mon Mar 21, 2016 1:35 pm

I like doing the pet damage ones. Ill peel back the carpet, cut out the pad, paint the sub floor and sand down the really bad spots if needed, come back when its dry with a new piece of pad, clean the carpet from both sides and then knee kick it back in.

Where I fall short on the repairs are tougher seams, hallways with closets and lots of turns, etc

if its my own house Im sure I could get the carpet tight in those areas but it would take me too long to do it right, and when there is jobs waiting I cant spend the time.

patching is pretty easy, even though I dont have the kool glide it can be done with a normal carpet iron

If a dog or cat tears up the carpet right in a door jamb leading out of a room where a seam is then I dont really know how to fix that and make it look great.
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Re: How much do you charge for carpet stretching ?

Post by Freemind1 on Mon Mar 21, 2016 9:02 pm

Indiana, actually.

I can only remember one job with pet damage. None had ripples or thresh holds that were boogered up.

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Re: How much do you charge for carpet stretching ?

Post by milspec6 on Tue Mar 22, 2016 2:40 am

All this talk about stretching carpets makes me want to hire a new tech with that skill-set in his/her back pocket. It might be the fastest way to get up to speed.
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Re: How much do you charge for carpet stretching ?

Post by Davey Cracker on Tue Mar 22, 2016 4:19 pm

That would be a good idea, Rob.

You can pay them, while making money on their efforts and then learn the skill from them at the same time.....you have to understand most guys like that have never made much for doing it, so there's plunty of room for a nice margin for you Laughing

If you can find someone?
I actually get calls from guys that do carpet installs, repairs and re-stretching pretty often, that are looking for work......prob one every two months on average......try a couple guys like that until you find a good one.

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Re: How much do you charge for carpet stretching ?

Post by milspec6 on Tue Mar 22, 2016 5:46 pm

I put the word out, hoping to find someone in late April. I think it would be easier to find an installer that you can train to clean than the other way around. A commission could help him/her stay motivated to sell the service better than I probably could and like you say, I get to learn on the fly as well.
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Re: How much do you charge for carpet stretching ?

Post by Mo on Tue Mar 22, 2016 8:27 pm

I used to refer guys for stretching and they both just disappeared. I found out because they stopped returning calls
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