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How Much Does Carpet Cost?

©2022 Alan Fletcher - Consumer Advocate


Q. How Much Should I Spend on New Carpet?

The Carpet prices below do not reflect how much it will cost to install your carpet. Installation prices vary depending on what part of the country you live in; how difficult your project is; and what style and grade of carpet you select. 


Carpet Cost vs. Longevity Chart

The more you spend, the better grade of carpet you will get. If you spend too little, your carpet might wear out too fast. Prices shown below reflect how long a Residential Grade Carpet (made from 100% NYLON fiber) might last based on the level of foot traffic in YOUR home. 


Take my free Carpet Foot Traffic Test to help determine what Grade of Carpet you need to meet your goals and lifestyle.


Learn more about Carpet Installation Cost.



How Much Will You Need To Spend?

Typical Carpet only prices shown, without padding or installation.


Estimated Cost

Square Yard

or Square Foot

Low Foot Traffic

Medium Traffic

Moderate Traffic



Last 5 Years

$15 / 1.66

$20 / 2.22

$25 / 2.78

$30 / 3.33

Last 10 Years

$20 / 2.22

$25 / 2.78

$30 / 3.33

$35 / 3.88

Last 15 Years

$25 / 2.78

$30 / 3.33

$35 / 3.88

$40 / 4.44

Last 20 Years

$30 / 3.33

$35 / 3.88

$40 / 4.44

$45 / 5.00



Obviously, spending just $15 per yard on new carpet won't get you the highest quality. However, if you have low foot traffic you still can get many years of use from an inexpensive carpet if you take good care of it. On the other hand, if you buy the highest quality carpet and don't take care of it, it will certainly wear out faster than you might expect. 


Proper Carpet care and maintenance can greatly extend your carpet's life span. Visit my Carpet Care Guide to learn how to make your carpet last years longer.


Most homeowners experience some degree of "sticker shock" when they discover how much new carpet is going to cost. You might need to save up more money before you purchase new carpet or perhaps you might consider completing your new carpet project in two or more stages. However, you should never settle for a lesser grade of carpet that cannot handle your level of foot traffic!  


What makes one carpet better than another? 

How to Compare Carpets



Basic Carpet Cost Guidelines:


A typical 2-bedroom home requires about 100 square yards of Carpet.  


Here's what it will likely cost you for a good quality Nylon Carpet without Padding and Installation and how long it might last depending on your level of foot-traffic.


Estimated Cost for 100 sq. yards of Nylon Carpet

Medium Foot Traffic

Moderate Foot Traffic

Heavy Traffic

Expect Carpet to Last 5 Years




Expect Carpet to Last 10 Years




Expect Carpet to Last 15 Years




Expect Carpet to Last 20 Years






To get started, take my Free Carpet Foot Traffic Test to discover your level of foot traffic. You need to know what grade of carpet to select to meet your needs and goals.




1. Medium-Quality Residential Carpet 


If you don't plan on being in your home forever you might not want to spend a fortune buying the highest quality carpet right now. Most folks plan on having their carpet last for about 10 years. After that they plan on moving or changing the carpet to something different. 


The key to having your carpet last as long as possible is to choose the right grade for your application and to maintain it according to the manufacturer's guidelines. Medium quality residential carpet is usually manufactured by a well-known brand names like Stainmaster, Mohawk, and Shaw to name a few. 



Typical Carpet Cost: Ranges from $15 to $22 per yard 

  • Carpet Face Weight: 30 to 40 ounce

  • Carpet Fiber: Nylon, Sorona PTT, Smartstrand

  • Common Styles: Plush, textured plush, sculptured, Berber, Cut Pile, Saxony

  • Typical Lifespan: 6 to 12 years


Padding Cost: Ranges from $3.00 - $4.50 per square yard.

  • Pad Type: Rebond, synthetic fiber, wool, rubber

  • Pad Thickness: 3/8", 7/16", 1/2".

  • Pad Density: 6 to 8 pound

  • Typical Lifespan: 6 to 12 years

  • Carpet Installation Cost



2. High-Quality Residential Carpet


High-quality residential carpet is usually manufactured by a well-known brand names like Stainmaster, Lees, Gulistan, Karastan or Masland to name a few. I am not including carpets made of Wool in this Carpet Cost Guideline, as Wool is more expensive than all the synthetic fibers used to manufacture carpet today. 


Wool carpets are certainly high-quality and can easily last 20 years or more, if cared for properly. In this Cost Breakdown I am referring to carpets made of 100% Nylon. 



Typical Carpet Cost: Ranges from $25 to $45 per yard 

  • Carpet Face Weight: 38 to 50 ounce

  • Carpet Fiber: 100% Nylon (continuous Filament)

  • Common Styles: Plush, Textured Plush, Frieze (Twist), Cut Pile, Saxony, Patterned Cut & Loop, Looped Berber and Cut-Pile Berber (California Berber)

  • Typical Lifespan: 12 to 20 years or more


Padding Cost: Ranges from $4.00 - $6.50 per square yard.

  • Pad Type: Rebond, synthetic fiber, rubber, wool felt

  • Pad Thickness: 3/8", 7/16", 1/2".

  • Pad Density: 6 to 10 pound

  • Typical Lifespan: 10 to 20 years

  • Carpet Installation Cost


Learn more: How to Select the Right Carpet Fiber



Q. Why Do Carpet Retailers and Carpet Salespeople PUSH Polyester Carpets?


Polyester & P.E.T. Polyester are among the cheapest fibers to manufacture which is often why manufacturers and carpet salespeople work so hard to convince homeowners to buy it. When you buy a carpet made from Polyester... It translates into more profit for the carpet dealer, for the carpet manufacturer, and higher commissions for the carpet salesperson too!


More Important Info:


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All content is the opinion of the author.



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