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Lower Your Household Cleaning Costs by 2000%!

What’s the single dirtiest thing in your home? If your answer is “The Toilet”, then maybe you should take this time to go clean it. I’ll wait for you to come back. I’ll even hum a tune while you’re gone…

“My baloney has a first name, it’s O-S-C-A-R. My baloney has a second name, it’s M-A-Y-E-R”

Oh! You’re back already! Well now that your toilet is all sparkly, what else is really disgusting in your house? Well what’s under your feet? Oh, carpet eh? Is there a shoe between your feet and the carpet? Yeah? Bad Reader! Bad bad bad!

Your Nasty, Disgusting Carpet is Costing You Money!

Now I don’t plan on backing up my assertions with any fancy statistics or scientific facts, as I hope common sense will prevail.

Growing up, my family always wore shoes in the house. We also had a few dogs, iguanas, guinea pigs and other wildlife. That means we walked through the same grass that the dog (and all other woodland creatures and maybe even the neighbors) urinated on and tracked that right into the house. Heck, I’m positive we were tracking in feces too!

Did I spoil your breakfast/lunch/dinner? Good. It gives you more time to browse my Archives.

Your carpet serves two purposes. One is expected by you, while the other might not be:

1. Provide a soft and stylish flooring

2. Catch every piece of dirt, dust, pollen, poo and even live bugs off your shoes as you walk by.

Ok, so I have your attention by grossing you out, but how does your carpet COST you money? Isn’t the only cost incurred when you buy and install it?


Ways Your Carpet Costs YOU Mo Money

Every year, you’re shelling out money, whether you know it or not, thanks to your carpet:

1. Electricity to vacuum (I sure hope you vacuum it though). Plus the cost of the vacuum in the first place

2. Shampooing/Steaming costs, whether you pay for someone to clean the carpets or rent a steamer yourself.

3. New carpet when the old carpet wears out. Some of you hold onto carpet WELL after it’s moved on to the next life.

4. Medical costs for allergy medicine, allergy shots, tissues and anything else related to pollutants and allergies. If you’re allergic to pet dander, pollens or molds, they’re probably in your carpet just waiting to attack you while you’re playing with your adorable new baby on the floor.

How can you save money on your carpet?

Easy. Don’t wear shoes inside the house.

Sure, you’ll still need to vacuum, and steam clean, and eventually replace carpet. And you’ll probably be allergic to the same things. But if you’re not tracking dirt and pollen throughout the house, then you’re slowing down the carpet’s deterioration, reducing the amount of pollutants stuck in the fibers and the frequency of the need to clean, and eventually reducing your allergic reactions within the home.

Thanks to my wife’s family, and gentle screaming at me if I don’t listen, I’ve adopted the habit of removing my shoes right inside the door. I’ve also begun to use more shoes without laces to make entry and exit easier. And when I’m going outside, I just plan a little better to reduce the number of times I need to go back into the house for something. For example, when mowing the lawn, I bring my drink outside. When I leave for work, I make sure I have everything before walking out the front door.

So how did I come up with the 2000% savings? Well, I made it up. That’s what all the statisticians do anyway, isn’t it? It caught your attention and got you to read this far, didn’t it?

So take off your nasty, poo-covered shoes at the door and save yourself some dollars and sneezes by not tracking the outdoors through the indoors. You’ll be glad you listened to the Dude.

Photo by Future Man-Cop

About the author

Clever Dude


  • We did just put in new Pergo floors a month ago in half of the downstairs rooms and I already notice an improved smell in the home. The last owners had pets (and were smokers, but I don’t think they smoked in the house), and I know they wore their shoes in the house. We also replaced the carpet in one of the other bedrooms downstairs, so we only have 2 more rooms to replace carpet in eventually.

    Oh, and the picture isn’t of our carpet (see the dog in the background? We don’t have a dog). The attribution is at the bottom of the article.

  • First – nice shot of your living room floor!!

    Second, I have hardwood flooring throughout my entire downstairs of my home (with the exception the decorative rug under the coffee table). The cleaning is simple and cost efficient. A good sweep every evening while dinner is being cleaned up and a mopping during the regular house cleaning. If you infuse the Vinegar Solution ( instead of high priced cleaning soaps) and some other easy home tips you can really save the mythical 2000%!!

    Great story…

  • We never wear shoes in the house, mainly because of the dirt. And in the winter, when your shoes are wet, the carpets get wet which just makes them more dirty!

    We actually have shelves in our garage, along with benches, and everyones shoes stay outside. There isn’t a pair in the house. It’s great!

  • I don’t allow shoes in my apartment. I have three mats at the front door and all guests remove their shoes and walk on the carpet without their shoes.

    Since I hate to be barefooted I have a pair of ‘inside’ shoes that I wear inside all the time and I have a pair of slippers by the door for the times I need to run out quickly.

    I got the ‘inside’ shoes thing growing up because my mother did not let us walk around with our regular shoes inside and I don’t like having my feet touch the floor.

  • Ha ha! Great post! In our culture (Turkish), we wear home slippers inside. Even so, the carpets are horrible dirt-catchers.

  • If you remove your outside shoes, make sure you slip on “inside” shoes or are at least wearing socks on your carpet. Going barefoot on your carpet transfers the oil from your skin to the carpet fibers, which will eventually soil the carpet as the oily fibers attract more dirt.

  • My “posh” relatives have indoor and outdoor shoes. I haven’t thought about it much, but I’m sure it makes a difference. They even had me buy a pair of flip-flops for indoors when I spent the summer.

  • We. Malaysians mostly leave our shoes outside the house. And most of us are barefoot inside. (Probably some would have indoor shoes).

    And, in all honesty, we have thought it disgusting when we see in Western movies, people wearing their shoes inside the homes…even lying on their bed with their shoes on.

    Even in some offices now, people take off their shoes and wander around the office in indoor slippers.

  • I started leaving my shoes in the foyer when I moved into my new house. I wanted to make sure the carpet stayed clean for as long as possible. All my guests know when they come over, the have to leave the shoes downstairs.

    Eventually, I want to replace the carpet in my living room with hardwoods.

  • Referring to the title…
    Not to be a stick in the mud, but by definition, it’s impossible to lower the cost of something by more than 100%. Unless, of course, by taking your advice, my carpet pays me twenty-fold the amount of money that would offset my future carpet maintenance expenses. I’m just saying…

  • An architect friend designed his own home—he left the flooring just as it was—the concrete slab. Albeit he had the concrete slightly and attractively patterned.

    As a civil engineer I often added minerals to various concretes—you can have subtle, beautiful colors.

    As a landlord I dealt with the horror of tenant abused carpet. I can remember in ~1990 a Wall Street journal article listed wall-to-wall carpet as the 3rd largest expense a person deals with (behind home and vehicle.) Certainly makes a “tile imprinted, colored” concrete slab attractive. Wearing comfy, padded “inside” shoes and you’re good-to-go.

  • @David, I would regard any claims by ANY manufacturer as suspect if they say their product attacks dirt and odors. It may work to mask odors (with chemicals) and hide dirt (with a stylish pattern), but I would bet even those carpets would smell like any other carpet after the first year, without reapplication of those harsh chemicals I’m sure.

  • Carpet is disgusting and I do plan to remove it all and replace with pergo or hardwood eventually. Just look at what the steam clean water looks like and does it ever get clear? No. YOu should see what was under it when I pulled up the basement carpet too. Disgusting. and I don’t even wear shoes in the house. When you see what lays on the Pergo now, then you know all that dirt you now see, was grinding into the carpet before. I still have to sweep or vacuum the Pergo often but at least I don’t sit there on the dirt or walk around on it now that I can see it. Carpet is cozier and warmer though. Might keep one room like that.

  • Man, you people sure know how to rain on a girl’s parade. With advice like you’re suggesting, no wonder I’m dangling on the edge of hanging up my carpet cleaning wand for good. I’ve switched to using only green cleaning chemicals, even down to my last batch of cards being printed on totally reclaimed cotton with veggie based inks. The printer said they were so healthy I could eat them. If everyone takes your advice, I may as well start serving them up for dinner. I run on diesel fuel which only makes my operating costs worse. I’ve played with the idea of going all green and investing in making my own recycled waste veggie oil, but at the rate people are NOT calling to clean their carpets, what’s the point? I personally am living on plywood floors at this point waiting for the cash to get some help installing my cork flooring which has been sitting in the garage for two years. I may end up foregoing the paid help and winging it myself. Who ever has any extra cash laying around anyway. Hanging up the wand soon.

  • I’ve been waiting for years to ditch my carpet! Thanks for this, I’m going to print it and plop it in front of my Hubby ASAP. I’ve been telling him for years that the carpet in our house is the reason I have allergies. We will see! Thanks Again!

  • For years I’ve had the great debate with my husband about getting rid of the carpet in our living room (he was quite willing to getting rid of the one in the dining room, which is the 3rd most stupid room have carpet in. First being the bathroom and second the kitchen). Apparently his tootsies are too delicate for a cold uncarpeted floor. I finally convinced him that carpets are disgusting and impossible to clean thourougly since it all get down into the pad and anything powerful enough to suck it out from there would ruin the carpet anyway. We ripped out the old carpet to find another carpet under it, one that looked like it was frome the sixties in a green swirl pattern. Under that was a black carpet pad that was glued down to the concrete under it. We put in a nice snap-together laminate. We also painted. My living room looks so much better and lighter.

  • We have tons of teenagers in our house all the time (3336 sq ft home with 3200 sq ft of carpeting including all 4 bathrooms! Disgusting!) My husband is alergic to just about every environmental trigger that can loom in carpeting. Yet he refuses to pull up the carpet that covers 4 rooms with solid hardwood floors underneath. Tomorrow we will be spending at least 500.00 to have our carpet cleaned. This happens twice a year, and in between I clean with a home steam cleaner. I am disgusted by the fact plumbing is old and all of our toilets have overflowed onto the carpeted bathroom floors. And we all know that toilets never overflow with just plain toilet water. I have never liked carpet and I never will!!!!

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