5 Questions to Ask Before Hiring a Carpet Cleaner

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Alec's Carpet & Upholstery Cleaning

Subject: Bonding & Insurance

I have been in this business for over 45 years and people need to realize that bonding protects the business from their employees stealing from them. It does not protect the consumer at all. Theft is a crime and criminal charges would have to be filed with the proper authorities. As far as insurance goes, there is a lot of misconception with this also. When carpet cleaning companies say they are insured for property damage and personal liability, they are but there is a clause in insurance policies that state if the item damaged is in the care, custody or control of the cleaning technician then the insurance company is not liable, the cleaning company is. The insurance company insures companies for accidents not for lack of ability to clean some thing properly. My advice, is to make sure the company you deal with has proper insurance and also, they have substantial assets themselves in the event of any damage to be able to cover any lost you may incur from improper cleaning. It is also good to make sure you have an physical address for a business, not just a P.O. Box or phone number. They can disappear as quick as they want.

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RUN, don't catwalk away !

If there is a strong urine smell, you have to assume their realtor noticed it even if they were acclimated to it and had them clean the carpets so there would be a chance of selling it. The fact there is still strong odor means it has saturated walls, run down behind baseboards, saturated carpet and mat and subfloor, etc.

Short of a total strip-down of all flooring and baseboards, shelves, mantles, etc and complete sanitizing and chlorine bleach treatment of thereby exposed surfaces followed by repainting and reflooring, you don't have a prayer of getting rid of it. If they let their cats spray and urinate in the house they probably did it all over the house, not in one area, as cats tend to want to go to the bathroom in a "clean" area, not in one fixed spot like dogs.

You are looking at probably $20,000 to get rid of the smell for sure, and even then if the house gets humid in rainy or hot sticky summer weather, the smell could come back out of subflooring, etc.

There are a lot of houses out there - I would bet you looked at this one with intent to buy because it was cheap compared to the competition - well, now you know why, and if you buy it I bet you will know why again every time you come into the house, and get run over by the same train when YOU try to sell it.

Just walk away.


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