A reader answers Bill Baxley's "You Make the Call"

RE: Carpet Installation – It Seams to Me… (Jan/Feb 2000 FCI)

So the questions remain: Who is liable for the installation? Who should fix the problem? How would you handle it?

A part of my retail side wants to say tough luck to the consumer who (if they’re from my town) shopped and based their decision solely on price. We constantly inform our end-users that we only use and support CFI-certified installers, and that we have a spotless record with the Better Business Bureau, the Contractor’s License Board, and the local Division of Consumer Affairs.

That and a nickel will get you a cup of coffee. The point is, in the consumer’s eyes, price is the great motivator. Yes, they get what they pay for, but at our expense. Enough said.

As for the questions at hand:
(p>The installer is liable. He touched it last, and inappropriately.

The installer, if he is CFI, can fix the seam. If not, get a local CFI installer to accompany the original installer to both repair and teach, two birds with one stone.

The store owner/manager might be able to re-sell the job to the end-user if he/she convinces the consumer that they have contracted with a CFI-endorsed installer to remedy the seam, that a written extension will be provided on that seam as well as the job in its entirety and, if needed, another portion of the house the consumer was considering having work done on will be located, and the owner/manager will offer the consumer a great deal or future price reduction in exchange for another opportunity.

Have the retailer call and apologize to the manufacturer for wasting their time and money.


Timothy E. Chavey

Owner, Floor Stop

Sacramento, CA