Why Are Rugs So Expensive?

Why Are Rugs So Expensive?

A handmade area rug can be extremely expensive. It can cost a lot more than its counterparts.

A rug’s price depends on several factors, including the quality of its material, construction, and country of origin. Whether you’re buying a one-of-a-kind area rug or an ordinary one, you’ll need to take into account the quality and material of your chosen rug.

Those with an eye for style will be able to tell you why a certain piece of floor covering is expensive. To help you develop that keen eye to identify the reasons and be able to judge why those rugs come with such hefty prices, we have compiled this information. 

Factor 1: Material of the rug

Why Are Rugs So Expensive?

The material of the rug is the first and foremost factor that makes area rugs expensive. The quality of the material used in area rugs plays an important role in its cost. Area rugs made of man-made materials are affordable, as they are mass-produced. The most affordable synthetic fibers are polypropylene and nylon. Natural fibers area rugs are more expensive, but still a great investment.


Silk area rugs are delicate, and often handcrafted by master artisans. But despite their high cost, they can be beautiful, enduring, and even functional. Silk is a soft and lustrous fabric produced by silkworms, and it takes a long time to produce it.


Viscose is also a delicate material that lends shine and smoothness to area rugs. Hence, area rugs that use viscose are generally slightly more expensive than many other rug materials.


In contrast to silk, wool rugs are easy to maintain, flame-resistant, and durable. These factors are often reflected in their high price, and should not discourage you from investing in one. Higher-end area rugs usually use high-quality wool.

Besides, luxury area rugs are mostly made of wool.


Area rugs made of slightly less sustainable material, cotton can be expensive, but their durability and ease of care make them worth the cost. They are also flammable, which is another reason they are expensive.


Generally, lower-priced area rugs tend to use synthetic materials. One of those materials is nylon.

These materials are not as sustainable, and they are prone to shedding, pilling, and fading. They are also less durable and can attract dirt and stains.


Polyester is generally a more affordable synthetic fiber. Although a synthetic woven area rug may be inexpensive, it can be high-end. The price of an area rug is determined by the quality of its yarn and the quality of its craftsmanship.

Factor 2: Technique employed

Why Are Rugs So Expensive?

Area rug’s durability is another major factor that determines its cost. A handmade area rug will be priced higher.

Besides the quality of a rug’s materials, the density of the weave determines the price of a rug. A higher weave density indicates the quality of the rug’s construction, which in turn will affect the price.

A higher weave density means that the rug is more durable, but it also means it is more expensive.

Factor 3: Size of the rug

While the size of the rug cannot be the absolute factor that determines how expensive a rug would be, most of the time it’s obvious that a larger rug is priced higher. This is because rugs are priced by square foot.

Other factors

Among other factors, the quality of a rug can determine the price. The quality in turn is determined by several other factors:

Design and pattern

The higher quality of a rug’s fibers and its design affects its price. The intricacies of design and the complexity of weaving the same will also determine how expensive it is.

Production ethics

Whether or not a rug is handmade is an important factor. What is of greater importance is how ethically the process was carried out. Some rug manufacturing firms give inhuman treatment to their weavers, extremely lower wages, and use child labor. Rugs made using such unethical processes can easily be sold for lower prices. So, when you look to buy an expensive rug, check if it is certified. Generally, a rug that comes with certification is made using ethical processes.

Hand-Knotted Vs Seemingly handmade

For example, a Moroccan hand-knotted rug will cost much more than a China power-loomed one. But both are considered handmade, so the difference between the two types is not just a matter of quality. A handmade area rug will last a lifetime, but it will require the money to pay for it. Also, in hand-knotted area rugs, how much a rug will cost depend on the quality, which in turn depends on the number of knots per square inch. The higher the density of knots, the more is the time and labor investment and hence the price of the rug.

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