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Carpet is the classic choice for a floor covering in any home as it simply oozes comfort. Of all the options available for floor covering, it is the only one that can boast of being a soft cushion for your feet as you make your way from one room to another.
Every covering has its advantages and disadvantages, and carpet is no different. It might give your feet the royal treatment, but can be more difficult to maintain than harder materials like wood, laminate, vinyl, or tile.
Still, it can be kept in good condition if you invest in regular cleanings for general foot traffic or accidental spills. All in all, it can be a very attractive choice for the home, particularly in rooms that are spaces of relaxation.
But how much does it cost to put down a carpet in a room? Most spend between $1,200 and $1,400 for a 16 ft by 16 ft room. The cost can vary by several factors.
Carpet Cost Factors
The material used to make the carpet will affect its price. Natural materials are usually more expensive than synthetic materials. It’s important to remember that natural materials are not always as strong as synthetic ones since the synthetic ones have been formulated to possess properties that make it suited to its role.
Still, some natural materials are fluffier in texture and more appealing to the eye, so striking the right balance between taste and practicality is key.
Carpet can range in price from $2 to $10 per square foot. You might need to around to find the style and price point that suits your needs.
Foot Traffic and Durability
If you’re looking to lay carpet in a room that your family only uses for special occasions, you may not need to invest in a highly durable variety. Instead, you could opt for an aesthetically pleasing one at a lower cost that would not last long in a room you use a lot.
On the other hand, if everyone in your household on a daily basis, durability and maintenance may be the factors you prioritize over softness or appearance. It’s all a question of personal taste and what you are willing to sacrifice to lower your costs.
Textures and Patterns
Carpet is available in many textures and patterns, which offers limitless options for a design aesthetic. Textured carpet is often more expensive to produce than a non-textured carpet.
Carpet can also have patterns and varying colors which can add beauty to a space. While a pattern may be attractive, it can also increase the amount of material required for the project to keep the pattern consistent at the seams. Also, producing carpet with patterns is often more expensive, thus adding a pattern can add to the price.
Carpet padding protects the flooring, adds cushioning, and is sometimes even required for the warranty of the floor. Padding usually needs to be replaced when installing new carpet and can cost $.25 to $2 per square foot.
Estimate How Much Carpet and Padding is Needed
To calculate how much carpet you need for your room, the first thing you need to do is measure the dimensions. The dimensions are the length and the width, and these should be measured in feet to find out the square footage.
Additionally, carpet is often measured out in square yards, so it is appropriate to figure out how many square yards there are in a room. Because one square yard is equal to nine square feet, just divide the square feet by nine to determine the square yards.
Installing Carpet on Stairs
Installing carpeting on a flight of stairs will add to the amount of carpet needed and the complexity of the installation. Stairs require carpet on the face of both the tread and the riser, so about double the square footage of the stairway.
Installing carpet on a set of stairs with a standard wall edge costs about $3 to $10 per tread. Stairs with the railing spindles that go straight to the floor and need to be carpeted around are even more complicated to work around. Plan on spending $15 to $20 per step if this is going to be required.
One important thing to note is that even big box stores offering “free installation” will often charge extra for stairs.
Flooring installers usually charge around $1.50 – $2.50 per square foot to install carpet. Labor rates may vary by region and the skill level of the installers. Some flooring stores also offer free installation and either absorb the cost of installation or add the price to the carpet itself.
Hiring a professional adds to the cost, but it can potentially save you a lot of money in the long run. Moreover, if you don’t have experience in this area, you will likely make a mistake that will take away from the finished appearance.
Project Complexity Cost Factors
The complexity of the flooring project can impact the price of installation and in some cases may require more carpet material. Complexities usually add to the project installation time. Thus they can increase the cost of the project.
Complicated cuts and angled walls add to the installation time. In addition, complicated cuts and rooms with angled walls might also require more carpet to avoid seams. Because of these factors, complicated cuts and angles often add to the total price of carpet.
If you’re tearing out old carpeting and refreshing with new, you might be surprised by what you find. Since you cannot repair the subfloor after the flooring installation, repair an imperfections before adding new carpet. Repairs to the subfloor can add unexpected costs and delay a project but are often unavoidable.
Removal and Haul-Away Costs
Flooring contractors usually charge extra to remove existing carpeting and might even charge to haul it away and dispose of it. One way to reduce the cost of the installation is to remove carpet yourself and haul it to the dump to avoid removal fees.
Saving with Cleaning and Repairs
If your carpet has seen better days it’s sometimes possible to get several extra years of life with a professional cleaning and if necessary, a few repairs. This option can help save on the cost of fully replacing all of the flooring, or by keeping existing flooring in secondary rooms and bedrooms.
A professional cleaning usually costs around $175 and repairs average around $195. This option could also allow you to put higher quality carpet in key rooms by saving the cost of installation in secondary rooms.
All pricing information on this page is based on average industry costs, and is subject to variance for project-specific materials, labor rates, and requirements.