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This statement was sent to me.

please get a quote to clean, we may replace the rug and contra the cost.

Does this mean I will have to pay to get the rug cleaned?

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  • If you are reading this comment and the answer below, please indicate by adding a comment. Do you now understand what the statement means? Jul 6, 2017 at 4:09

1 Answer 1

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According to Wiktionary, contra is used as a verb to mean:

(accounting) to undo; to reverse

  • to contra a position (an entry)

The statement:

"please get a quote to clean, we may replace the rug and contra the cost"

means:

If the cost of cleaning is more than the cost of replacing the rug, we may replace it instead of cleaning it.

It is logical to infer that the writer will pay in either case.

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    I wonder if this is obsolete usage. I have never seen it used (AmE).
    – user3169
    Jul 6, 2017 at 2:43
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    @user3169 It's not obsolete, but its use is very narrowly confined to accounting; it's far from uncommon there, but rarely seen elsewhere. Jul 6, 2017 at 2:46

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