FIANA Dossier

Recently I was looking through a newspaper, and lo and behold, it finally has happened. A large ad proclaimed in large, bold type: FREE CARPET! I was to say the least quite taken aback; shocked is more like it. All of us over the years have become all too accustomed to retailers offering FREE INSTALLATION, FREE 1/2-INCH FHA APPROVED CARPET CUSHION, FREE REMOVAL OF OLD CARPET and FREE FURNITURE MOVING. But, now the ultimate, all this and FREE CARPET too? How could a person go wrong? Well, for a year they could not.

But, when you read the small print it explains “No Interest or Payments for the first year.” That only means you get by for a year with free carpet. Even that’s not a bad deal, when coupled with the absolute statement in the ad stating “We Can Not Be Undersold.” Well of course that’s probably true when you’re giving away free carpet. It would be a little difficult for a competitor to beat that price, unless he paid you to take the carpet. If I were a homeowner who plans to sell my house, I would take advantage of this kind of offer. Why not? Have the carpet put in free, then sell the house before the first twelve months are up. There is no outlay of money, and proceeds from the house payoff the free carpet in the thirteenth month. There is no interest paid. As I have often said in past articles, “We undersell ourselves.” Why should a carpet retailer have to look like he’s always giving something for nothing. We all know it ain’t so. Why must a retailer’s place of business look like a flea market? Why can’t it look like an upscale place to do business? Not everyone is looking for a dirty, cluttered place to shop. Some of the stores in the carpet retail segment of our industry are disgusting.

The carpet sale signs are faded out from being hung up so long. The factory direct signs mean nothing; everybody in retail flooring business buys some if not all of their flooring direct today. If you compare what you get for you money, then you would find out the prices are pretty much the same from the grungy looking discount store to the nice looking neighborhood retailer. The value of the carpet is not so much the price, as it is the finished installation. A real good free carpet is only as good as the finished installation. Most of the time, like anything else, you get what you pay for. So, if you elect to purchase inexpensive carpet from a grungy looking retailer, then you can expect in most cases to get what you pay for. A very unsatisfactory finished installation. On the other hand, if you purchase your carpet from a good retailer who has a neat, clean well established neighborhood store, you can expect a good finished installation. It’s the look and feel we are all after, not the price.

The old saying holds true in carpet as it does in nearly everything else, “You Get What You Pay For.” We at FIANA are trying to improve the professionalism of our salespeople. We are trying to bring to our members the knowledge necessary to sell our products properly in a professional manner. FIANA Distributors offer locally stocked products, at a fair price, delivered to you when you need them. We are here for you.