Angie's List: Checking out professional carpet cleaners

Whether they appear online, on the radio or on television, it is seemingly impossible to avoid seeing advertisements for low priced carpet cleaning services. But how many are too low to be true?

There's no doubt Wendie Zeller loves her dog. What she does not love are the tracks Joe leaves behind. So when she saw an online professional carpet cleaning deal she didn't think twice about buying it.

"Good price, I needed the bedrooms done, and for four rooms, so I just bought it,” said Wendie.

It was exactly the deal Wendie needed. That is until the cleaner showed up at her door.

According to Angie Hicks, the founder of Angie’s List, "One common complaint we've heard over the years when it comes to carpet cleaning companies is suggesting a price that just seems too low to be true. What happens is they get there and the consumer ends up paying more than they expected."

Wendie described her experience as awful, “he had told me that because my carpets were so dirty that they would need to do a deep cleaning, and that would be extra."

To avoid those added extras, consumer experts recommend homeowners insist on a written, detailed estimate on what the company will do for the advertised price. And never be shy about sharing your own family's details.

Angie says the more information a homeowner gives to the cleaners, such as how many pets and children they have, and what areas are in need of extra cleaning the better.

“The more information you give them, the more prepared they can come to do the actual project in case you need special cleaners for some difficult spots,” Angie recommends.

Professional carpet cleaner like Chris Stone suggest homeowners do a little work in order to save extra money. Chris has been cleaning carpets professionally for over seven years, he says "You want to try to move as much as possible in the areas that you want clean; if there are any couches or sofas or magazines. Everything you can do to help it move faster when they come to clean your carpets. The time that we save from you moving those things, we actually pass those savings on to you."

It's a lesson Zeller learned the dirty way. Anyone looking into professional cleaning services should do their homework on the company they are thinking about hiring. By checking out online review sites and reading what others have said about their experiences is one of the best ways to predict how future experiences with the company will be.

Experts say a good company will return to clean spots that appear within a short period of time, and even offer a guarantee.

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