Ever wonder what it would cost to replace the carpet in your home? By the time you finish reading this, you’ll be able to estimate it accurately on your own. You are going to have to guess a little on the quality you want but that’s pretty simple too. Let’s start with the most important calculation. Take the sizes of all the rooms and multiply all of them length by width. Take this amount and multiply the number by 15% for all the waste that you have to pay for that is thrown away. If you divide this number by 9, this will give you the square yardage which is the way most carpet is figured.
If you have stairs or any other unusual shapes, it’s still calculated the same. Measure the entire stairway and multiply the total length by its width. Add the waste factor and divide by 9. Most carpet installers charge an extra $175 to do a staircase on top of the standard laying cost. So let’s do some math and say you need 225 square yards of carpet to do your entire home. Apartment grade carpets start at $6 per square yard and really nice quality carpet runs about $50 per yard. For the sake of this article, let’s say you are trying to do this on a shoe string budget.
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We know we need 225 square yards and we know the least expensive carpet sells for $6 per yard. So that gives us $1,350 for the carpet. Entry level carpet cushions (pad) run about $3.50 per square yard so that adds another $787.50. Installation runs about $4 per square yard so that will add another $900 plus the extra $175 for the staircase for a total labor cost of $1075. If you do not want to pull up and haul away your old carpet, they will charge you another $2 per square yard for a total of $450. So the grand total for everything is $3,662.50.
If you have furniture that needs to be moved that will cost extra as well. The amount depends on how much furniture you have but you can use a $2 per square yard figure as an average. If you can pull up your old carpet and move your own furniture, you can deduct these amounts. If you have concrete floors most installers charge about 50 cents more per square yard over the normal charge because it takes more time. If you chose a berber or other looped or patterned carpets, they usually charge $1 per square yard more also.
Let’s talk about the carpet and pad options. As I said, $50 per yard carpet is towards the top of the scale. If you did this amount of yardage with this choice, it would run $11,250 just for the carpet. You don’t put apartment grade pad under this either so you need to figure about $8 per yard for that which comes to $1,800. The differences between the $6 carpet and this carpet are night and day. In carpet terms, it’s comparing a carpet that weighs 20 ounces to one that weighs over 70 ounces. One is so lush and soft you want to lay down and go to sleep on it. The other is your basic apartment carpet. Just a plain color in a very thin quality.
The prices between these two for 225 yards ranges from $1,350 to $11,250. Every possible quality, price and style is available in between. The installation costs about the same regardless of which you pick. It usually takes a couple days to install a job this size. If there are stairs, pulling and hauling the old carpet and some furniture, add a day. Let’s say you are selling your home and expect to list it at $650,000. You can’t put apartment grade in and you don’t want the top of the line either. A $15-20 dollar per yard budget is about where you should be (that’s for the carpet only). If you chose something less than this for a house that will sell for this much, you may get complaints.
Your pad choice should be based on how long you are planning to live there. Pads start around $3 per square yard for an entry level rebond and over $10 for a heavy rubber. If you are selling the home most people spend closer to $3. If you are not moving and want something that will last, you should spend $6 or more per square yard. Investing in a pad with a moisture barrier is recommended if you want to make sure spills don’t continue to come back and re-stain the carpet repeatedly. They don’t make pads in different thicknesses the way they use to. If you are selling and want to make the carpet feel as thick as possible, get a denser one. That will help. If you are carpeting an entire home, you can run up a pretty big tab. If you are only carpeting a room or two, most people chose to spend a little more per yard to get better quality even if they are on a tighter budget.
So here’s your checklist and I’m sorry if this information has been confusing. You’ve got the cost of the carpet and I told you how to estimate your yardage. If you need pad and most usually do, add this to the cost of the carpet. You’ve got the installation at $4 per yard plus pulling up the old and hauling it away (add $2 per yard). If you have furniture, concrete floors, a staircase or a berber (looped carpet), these add additional costs as well. Any of this that you can do always saves you money.