How do I choose a carpet cleaner in Lethbridge, AB?
Choosing a professional carpet cleaning service in Lethbridge can be a daunting task if you have never used one before. Currently there are over 20 companies to choose from in the Lethbridge area! What should one look for when having this service provided? Have you ever heard of things like: “Cleaning Carpet Can Be a Dirty Business”, “Not All Scum Is In the Carpet”,“Clean Your Carpets Without Cleaning Out Your Wallet”, “Don’t Get Taken To The Cleaners.”? These clever phrases have appeared recently in newspaper articles and televised news programs across the nation warning consumers about carpet cleaning scam operations. The media has related horror stories of trusting consumers who have responded to low-price carpet cleaning specials only to become victims of unethical cleaners who refuse to honor the advertised price, intimidate the consumers and do poor quality work.
Bait-and-switch operators are prevalent in many industries, and the carpet cleaning industry is no exception. This does not mean that all carpet cleaners are rip-off artists. How do you know who is and who is not? The professional carpet cleaning industry has cited these scam activities as a major industry concern. They are taking action to help eliminate unprofessional workmanship and unethical tactics. One of the leaders in this campaign is the IICRC. They are an international, non-profit organization that certifies cleaners who meet prescribed levels of technical proficiency. These cleaners also pledge to operate by a Code of Ethics.
We would like to educate consumers so they will not become victims of shady practices within our industry! The IICRC has released a list of guidelines to consider when selecting a carpet cleaner.
- Price – If an advertised price sounds too good to be true – it is! Often carpet cleaners advertise a low price just to get their foot in the door. Use common sense; a low price usually equates to low quality for any product or service. Legitimate business people have expenses they must cover. These include license, taxes, insurance, employee wages and benefits, and quality tools of the trade. A professional carpet cleaner has to cover all these expenses and make a profit to stay in the business. It shouldn't be a surprise that they cannot afford to drive to your house for a "$99 whole house special."
- Quality – Never should the price of cleaning services be the sole focus for selecting a carpet cleaner. A price that sounds high may not be a signal of a rip-off. In all professions, quality work deserves a quality price.
- Truth in Advertising – Read the fine print in advertised specials to find out exactly what the price includes. It is also recommended to request a firm price in writing before the work begins.
- Training – Professional cleaning firms require management and employees to engage in formal training in a variety of cleaning skills. Also these educational efforts will be ongoing. Consumers should ask about the formal training background of technicians who will be cleaning their carpet.
- Certification – Professional firms require technicians to have certification from the IICRC or a comparable franchise or independent training and testing organization.
- Experience – The years of experience a firm has, combined with formal training , contribute significantly to the experience and proficiency of its employees.
- Knowledgeable – Professional firms employ and train technicians who have the ability to answer basic questions. These include carpet performance and maintenance, as well as spotting and cleaning.
- References – Consumers should ask for references from previous customers, and they should consult friends and business contacts about the reputation of the cleaning firm they are considering. Do not hesitate to call the Lethbridge Chamber of Commerce and the Better Business Bureau. Aqua Steam Services Inc. is a member of both!
- Trade Associations – Professional cleaning firms are members of regional or national trade associations or other organizations that promote high ethical standards and continuing education. Look for trade association logos in advertising.
- Credibility – Community involvement through the Chamber of Commerce and/or professional business, charitable or similar organizations will be undertaken by concerned, caring professionals. Look for logos indicating involvement in these organizations.
- Method – Ask the cleaner what cleaning method will be used, and what are the pros and cons of this method compared to others?
- Proof – Never hesitate to ask for proof. Ask to see the cleaner’s certification card, business license and insurance certificate.
- No Pressure – Technicians must be courteous and willing to take time to thoroughly explain the cleaning and to answer all questions. The consumer should never feel pressured.
Aqua Steam Services Inc. in Lethbridge, AB thanks iicrc.org for much of this information and we strive to deliver on all these points listed here. Call us for your free consultation today at 403-328-7547 or fill out our estimate request form and experience the clean difference yourself!