Choosing carpet for a new home can be a difficult, confusing and expensive project. Finding quality carpet bargains can ease the pain without sacrificing quality. The first step in getting a quality carpet bargains is to be clear about the kind of carpet you desire. Different kinds of carpets are good for different needs - not all carpets are created equal. Taking the time to understand carpet basics will enable a faster decision making process when the carpet is in front of you and you're ready to purchase. Getting a good deal on carpet is similar to getting a good deal at a yard sale. Purchases are made on the spot - research "to make a decision" is out of the question. By the time you complete researching, someone else may have purchased that "perfect" find.
Understanding the basics of carpet should only take an hour or two, but it will serve you well. Once the best kind of carpet has been determined, Google search for local carpet warehouses. Don't search for colors. Search for the basic carpet type you want and include the word "remnant" in your search requests. We aren't looking for Home Depot when it comes to a high-end carpet AND low cost. We're looking for carpet leftovers from new construction projects or a high-end renovations project.
Other search terms: cheap, inexpensive, wholesaler, deal, etc. If a Google Search doesn't reveal anyone in your area, try searching on Google Maps and include your city name in the search request. Use Yelp.com and research past customers' experiences for the real skinny on how each warehouse operates. Often you'll pick up great tips along the way for your own carpet project.
Grab your walking shoes and make the rounds. If color is important, bring the colors you are trying to match or complement in your home. Dresser drawers, pillow cases, drapes or other small items are easier to bring to the carpet, than bringing the carpet to the room and finding out it's the wrong color. Remember, you're bargain hunting. Avoid "Diva Designer" syndrome! Custom orders aren't possible. Leave Martha Stewart at home, and do your carpet shopping as early as possible. Some warehouses will store your carpet for up to 30 days until you make arrangements to have it transported to your home for installation.
Your carpet remnant may be up to 12' in length. Transporting a carpet roll on top of your Fiat or VW Beetle isn't recommended! Ask the warehouse for installer recommendations. Many of them have relationships with installers who can also transport your carpet and install it the same day (or when you need them to install it). Don't forget about the underlayment/padding. The warehouse probably has deals on underlayment as well, or may even be able to give you a price for the carpet, underlayment and installation (ideal) in one "package." The installer usually provides the carpet tack, so feel free to cross that off the list.
Good luck hunting! Patience and time can yield hundreds of dollars in savings.