Repair or replace?

terrie2July 19, 2011

We're thinking of putting our house on the market in a year or so and are going through the list of repairs needed - of which there are several - and it's going to get pricey. It's a 1960's home. Most houses in the neighborhood are 1,400 to 1,800 square feet and many have only done very minor upgrades. Ours is 2,700 with an oversized lot and has a lot of upgrades. Though the size should make it attractive to buyers we already know that that will most likely not have a major impact on price because of the neighborhood.

The family room is 25' by 25'. The carpeting in it was in beautiful condition until Christmas time when there was a fireplace mishap... My husband decided to light the fireplace, and lit a premade log. He then decided to put a real log on top of it - big mistake - and it started popping, throwing embers right over the top of the screen leaving small burns - Yikes! We currently have area rugs to hide the damage. We have a leftover piece of the carpeting that we could possibly have it repaired with. Does that work well or do we need to replace it completely? I'm sure hoping it can be repaired successfully because that's a big chunk of carpeting. Have any of you done this or do you think that we need to bite the bullet & replace it to sell?

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Based on how you described the neighborhood, I would suspect that a good repair of the areas would be your best bet to maximize profit.

BTW - many buyers do lift up rugs to see what you are hiding.

    Bookmark   July 19, 2011 at 1:18PM
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I think it depends on how the carpet looks otherwise. You said the carpet is in beautiful condition except for that piece. Is the carpet dated or an odd color? If so, I would replace.

You could bring your carpet sample into a place and get an estimate to fix. Depending on cost, it might be almost as expensive to just get new carpet for the entire room.

Depending on the burn size, you might just try to trim the carpet in the burn areas. I had carpet burns in a previous house from some embers that popped out. Our carpet had a light shag. I was able to trim out a few of the carpet strands to remove the burns without noticeably affecting the pattern on the carpet or starting a run. Depending on the type of carpet you have, you might be able to do the same.

    Bookmark   July 19, 2011 at 1:23PM
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If it's a decent quality rug a rug company ought to be able to repair it so you can not see the burns.
I know my parents had a rug that was less than a year old. A iron my mother was using had it's cord catch fire in the room where the rug was. It left a nasty looking burn mark. Mom called the place where she purchased the rug. The guys came out and fixed it. You couldn't tell after they did it or 10 years later where the burn mark was.

    Bookmark   July 19, 2011 at 1:40PM
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Just like adellabedella said, if your carpet has a thick enough shag, you can try cutting out a few of the strands here and there.

Since you have a leftover piece available - it is very possible a professional carpet person could use that piece and repair your carpet.

We had a 4"x4" area replaced where the puppy had chewed it. The guy spent about 1/2 hour on it, and charged me $25. It looks great. You would never know anything happened there, it blended perfectly. Definitely a whole lot cheaper and less time consuming than replacing the whole thing.

    Bookmark   July 19, 2011 at 5:00PM
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What is under the carpeting? Since it's a 1960s house you may have hardwood under there. If so, it's best to remove the carpet and refinish the floors.

    Bookmark   July 19, 2011 at 5:44PM
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Thanks everyone.
Billl - "BTW - many buyers do lift up rugs to see what you are hiding." I'd never do that to anyone since I'd throw a hissy if it were me, lol.
The carpet is a thick plush in a light tan so I think if I can get it repaired it'd be fine. The house is on a concrete slab so unfortunately there's no hardwood underneath.
Before it happened I didn't realize how quickly my hubby & I could move, lol. We scampered like crazy people trying to scoop up the embers but the damage was already done. I tried trimming the spots but unfortunately they'd gone too deep.
When we bought the house the carpet was absolutely grossly disgusting. The former oweners were relatives and were giving us a good price so we didn't dicker. A friend suggested a company that does restoration cleaning that he'd used very successfully for his rental properties. We figured if he could get it even semi clean at least we wouldn't be afraid to walk on it in our bare feet and could put off replacing it for a little while. I couldn't believe how perfect he got it - It looked like brand new! I just checked out his website and he also does repairs - Yay! I think I'll have him look at it and see what he thinks. I've got a 12' x 2 1/2' piece that he could use. Guess I'll see what he says.

    Bookmark   July 19, 2011 at 8:18PM
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Repair if you can to cut back on cost. But don't repair instead of doing it right. Remember that someone else is going to be moving in, and probably getting an inspection. Make sure all repairs are done up to code, and if they require it, get a permit first.

    Bookmark   August 11, 2011 at 2:49AM
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Well, it turns out that the carpet repair can't be done & look right. Guess we'll be replacing it, darn it.

    Bookmark   August 17, 2011 at 12:15PM
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You can probably get a remnant if it is just one room.

    Bookmark   August 18, 2011 at 11:18AM
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Cheap carpet that is clean, fresh & new is better for resale than expensive carpet that isn't all of the above. I'd shop around for the best deal you can find (cheap & neutral!) & install it RIGHT before you list...last thing you it's sparkling clean & spiffy for showings.

    Bookmark   August 18, 2011 at 12:47PM
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Totally agree with stinky-gardener. When I moved in here (started as a renter), they'd redone the stairs and landing with $1.68 sqy stuff from HD. It looked fine and held up for five years no problem before I got around to replacing all the upstairs carpet.

    Bookmark   August 18, 2011 at 3:05PM
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