BONAIRE, GEORGIA -- First I would like to say I had never purchased carpet before and there were subtle signs that really let me know I should go elsewhere, but I ignored them. A relative of a friend had a good experience and I based my decision on that and the $99 room sale. I wish I had come across these comments and reviews before setting up a FREE CONSULTATION. But I was truly just ready to get the simple, small, project over and done with. Please...FOLLOW YOUR GUT INSTINCTS AT ALL TIMES and continue READING THIS REVIEW!!!
My first appointment was scheduled for January 2, 2015 which was great because I was off. About an hour before the time frame that someone was supposed to show up, the salesperson, Lawrence, calls, explains he's out of town on vacation and Empire must've made a mistake scheduling me on that day. He asked if it was possible that he could come Monday. I agreed because I happened to be off that day as well. He said he would call around noon Monday January 5, 2015. I received no call at all. I called Empire and explained the entire situation and the cust svc representative just scheduled me for another appointment on January 12, 2015. No apology for the current inconvenience. Ok fine. I need to get an estimate to see what I am working with so I agree to the January 12th appointment. Now I had a whole week to mull this over and check online, but life got in the way and next thing I knew January 12th was here.
On January 12, 2015, Lawrence (yes same salesperson!) shows up on time. Makes no mention of standing me up previously. How do I know it was the same salesperson? I kept the number he called from to cancel the first appoint and it was the same number he called from on the 12th and it was on his business card. But I am just ready to find out how much it's going to cost me. Now keep in mind I've never purchased carpet before so I am admitting I was clueless. But this $99 room sale sounds amazing and even with the added cost of the product it can't be that bad.
PROJECT: Replacing only the carpet in 1 small bedroom with dimensions of 10x11 with a carpet as similar as possible.
The salesman gave his whole spiel, history of the company, etc. I know he must do this, but I also know I am only getting this one room done so it's no big deal. I look at the samples, pick the carpet. He measured the room and never told me what he came up with. So now I'm saying to myself ok that's a little weird. He starts telling me about all these discounts I am eligible for, etc. Now he's talking my language. He breaks out a calculator and starts computing figures behind his briefcase so that I cannot see what he is doing. But I can hear him banging on the calculator like crazy. If you've ever seen the scene of Tyler Perry's Diary of a mad Black Woman where Madea is in the kitchen adding on a calculator, that is the same exact thing Lawrence was doing, but he wasn't talking, just calculating. Right then I was thinking this is going to be really good or really bad.
It was really bad. I was told padding is included in the price and that's just how Empire does it so I couldn't get carpet only. The least expensive carpet quote was $614.27. And the rest went up from there increasing in $100-$150 increments. And they were all just flat numbers. Not a breakdown of what exactly I would be paying for and what discounts I was getting.
Should've said NO THANKS right then and there, but I really wanted this job done. He told me he could have one of his 20 crews back over here tomorrow and have the job done in an hour or so. I said ok, at least I wouldn't have to wait any longer. He pulled up the contract on his tablet and said I would get a copy overnight, I just had to sign some areas. Then he said he would need my credit card info or check to secure the appointment. He stressed that no one would get paid until the work was done and that I signed a certificate of satisfactory completion and gave it to the installer. That is how they get paid. So I said ok, it made sense to me. I made sure I saw that in the contract as well as my right to cancel and signed the contract. All this took place over the course of 40 minutes. After Lawrence left I spent 2 hours trying to comprehend how $99 plus cost of carpet turned into $614.27. I got online and came across this site and spent over an hour reading all of the horrible reviews. My heart sank. I had made a huge mistake. I had to cancel.
I called Empire Today the same night, about 4 hours after my free consultation and explained that I needed to cancel immediately. Please do not send any installers. The CSR told me the department that cancels installs is closed, but my cancellation is processed and they will just review it to make sure I get refunded. Refunded? I haven't had anything done to get refunded!! The CSR says my account shows a payment via credit card for $614.27 paid in full. Now I am furious, but I am thinking it must be an error. Lawrence said they don't get paid until the job is complete and I sign that certificate. When I got off the phone, I checked with my bank and sure enough, there was a pending transaction against my checking account for that $614.27.
The very next morning on January 13th I call Empire back to confirm my cancellation and make sure my money is being refunded. I spoke with a CSR who asked why I was cancelling and I told her I found someone to do it for less (I had not, but I didn't want to go through a whole song and dance). She asked for how much and I told her it was only 1 room and I found someone to do it for half the price they were charging me. This CSR tells me my business is appreciated and she sees some rebates that I am eligible for which would knock my price down considerably. It wouldn't be as low as half, but they really want to do business with me. WHAT?!! Are you kidding me?!! I told her I would have to decline because even with the rebates, it doesn't take away the fact that money was charged immediately for services that were not completed and I am not happy with that. She reviews my account and told me she saw where there was a deposit charged. I told her that nothing was mentioned about a deposit and I would not have agreed to a deposit that was the full cost of the project. She said she wasn't there so she cannot say what was agreed to, but don't worry I would receive my complete refund in 3-5 business days.
Yes you read correctly. The same money they took immediately as a "deposit" now cannot be refunded for 3-5 business days. I am livid! I am mad at myself, Empire, Lawrence, the whole situation!!! She told me that because I used a credit card I would receive a refund much faster than if I had wrote a check which could take up to 15 days. Her final question was if there was anything else she could do to help me. My response was "Unless you can immediately refund my money the same way you took it, then no there really isn't any other way you can help me."
Is this situation over? No. I am so paranoid and skeptical because of what I read I call Empire back on January 14th, the day after I confirmed my cancellation, to make sure it was truly canceled and the refund was processed. That CSR is showing the cancellation, the cancellation number and tells me it will be refunded in 7-10 business days. Excuse me!!! What happened to the 3-5 business days from yesterday? This CSR is sticking to her script and tells me it will be 7-10 business days and this is the credit institutions policy. The refund will be deposited as soon as they can do it. Ok is it 3-5 business days, 7-10 business days or as soon as you can do it?!!
I hang up feeling dumb and defeated. I should've known better. Empire immediately sent emails confirming my free estimate consultation and my installation. But when I canceled, I received a cancellation number and no email to verify it. If it sounds too good to be true, many times it is. This story does end well though. I ended up asking another friend for a carpet install referral. I explained the Empire catastrophe and he introduced me to a local guy who came and assessed the situation. I bought some carpet from Lowe's for $150 (I had to get a 10x15 piece for the style I wanted). This local guy picked up the carpet and installed it. My all inclusive (carpet, install and tip) price was $260. I felt relieved and it took the edge off of having to wait to get my money back from Empire for work that was never done. Imagine looking at a room with jacked up carpet after $614.27 has been taken from your checking account. Not a good feeling.
Empire returned my money to my checking account on January 21, 2015. Technically that was 4 business days after I canceled (the 19th was a holiday). But it felt like an eternity since it was 9 days from the date of my FREE consultation. Please beware of the $99/room sale. Especially if you are doing your whole house!!
Attached are before and after pics of the bedroom that needed the carpet replaced. I just want you to see that paying a total of $260 for new carpet and installation does not mean the work is shoddy at all. I am extremely pleased now that Empire is out of the picture!!! NO THANKS to Empire Today.
Hi LaToria, we appreciate you taking the time to share your concerns with us, and we regret that you did not enjoy your experience. We understand that we've been in contact with you and that you have already purchased elsewhere. If you have any additional questions or concerns, please don't hesitate to contact us at 888-588-2315 x4195 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you. Jeanette Ramey, National Customer Service Manager
CALIFORNIA -- I had some work done in the house by Empire before, and I had no complaint about it, so I called Empire for some more business. I was under the impression that I will have a pleasant experience as before, but I was in for a ride this time. May 2011 is when it all started, the salesmen showed up, and gave me a pressure squeezer must spend money today or else all prices will skyrocket... Yeah I bought into it. Got the papers signed money was placed in the guys hand, and the rest upon completion of work. The crew showed up with one guy able to speak English and the rest, well, not too sure, but I cared less since I am more concerned about quality work, then if the installers can talk at all. They proceeded to tear out my good carpet, and start laying the laminate. The tools they used would make an OSHa representative pull out a thick pad and would have a field day writing up all the problems, no blade guards on saw, no protective eyewear, the cord they used was ductaped and electrical taped in several spots. I should have guessed how this will turn out... Anyhow, the foreman of the group explained that the floor must be level grinded all the highs, and the lows should be filled so the laminate will not "bounce". They spent a good hour and a half grinding, but no fills.
I guess it was all well, and they laid the padding and the laminate. It was getting into the afternoon, and I told them I was allergic to mosqueto bites, and to keep screen door closed. They managed to poke a big hole with their fingers through my screen door damaging it. At 10:30pm they called it a day, and wanted me to sign papers, which I did, but I told them I can't really look at it over since I am tired, and will look at it the next day. Next day I find that the laminate bounces in several areas, and the loining area to the kitchen its totally crooked. Manager came out takes pictures, sets up appointment for crew to come out to fix. Crew comes back (even after I told manager not to send same crew)... they tear up half the area, and hall to patch the lows, put cement down and try to smooth it out, replace laminate. They discover that the worker who was on the job where the kitchen meets the room has cut things short, and that is why the transition is crooked to "cover up" this mistake. While they were ripping the floors up to do this repair, they manage to scuff up my walls where the 4" wood toe boards go around the base of wall. After they left, I called the manager back up to complain about this terrible job. She looked at the screen, looked at the walls, looked at the way they placed one door stop so the door know would hit the wall. She took pictures, and left, but no call back. I re-innitiated the contact around Sept 2011 and supervisor said they were waiting for me to get a third party for estimate on repairs, which I did for the walls, and screen door. They said they will credit account. No credit. Called back. Oh now its a check they are sending. No check. The company insisted again on their third party to check what I was talking about, cause they probably had no clue what the manager did with the picture, and her notes on this issue. Third party comes out discovers laminate is defective. Empire decides to replace it. But in order for them to replace an In Warranty I must sign a form that I will promise not to post a gripe, I will not talk about my problems. I refuse to have my freedom of speech trampled. HERE IS MY GRIPE EMPIRE! They want me to sign a form prior to installation that says they did a good job! Amazing. I feel this is a threat, and let them know. The crew finally comes out, a manager is with them, and we talk calmly about this nonesense, and watch from 8am till 4pm as the laminate goes into the room. I watch as the crew removes molding and tear more paint off my wall further damaging my property, and I point this out to the manager. This is a different crew as before. (by now you could guess Empire has NO WORKING CREW, they SUB CONTRACT!!!!) These guys lack of OSHA safety is as the others. No safety what so ever, and I point this out to the manager. I inspect the install. Run my hand across the laminate where is is supposed to be a smooth transition, but its rippled. I say nothing except to have the manager run her hand through it. Then the foreman... they both feel the same low quality of the material. (another bad batch???) Then I point out the flexing areas, and I ask one of the workers if that could be fixed, and he said, yes but the whole floor needs to be taken up. I said "go for it! Fix it" they look at each other as if I asked them how magnets work? The manager calls another manager on the phone we wait about 20 min for response. Offer on table is to pick a different material, maybe that is not impacted with low quality. A few days later she shows up with another sales representative and samples. We pick the material, and she said her manager still has to approve this. I get an email from the manager, with a contract attached (as before trying to get me to sign a "you can't talk, post about your gripe" paper, and that I will make sure the California State Licensing board will be notified that all is well PRIOR TO INSTALL. Come on.... if it was maybe AFTER, but before? No thanks! I sent a letter back stating that there were 4 options and I am willing to go either way. First option was to just replace the laminate with the laminat we picked original, give me money to repair damages to house, and I will not sign any documents. Second was replace laminate with the new pick of laminate and they still give me money to repair my property, and I still do not sign documents. Third was to give me back my old carpet which was in good to excellent shape, and give me full refund, and some money to repair my property, and I will not sign any documents. The fourth was lets go to court and see how a judge likes a company not honoring warranty they claim to support. The date was set up for install and it was January 19th 2012 nobody showed up. By not showing up she has made her statement well known to me, and now to the world where Empire Today stands. Their warranty is nonexistent, and a consumer must go to extreeme measures to get anyone moving in the way so the warranty is upheld.
If the representative of Empire Today dares to write any smart comment to contact her on phone or Email, its pure fraudulent, and I have tried over the past months to get results. It is not working!
I do hope Lawyers are reading these "gripes" if you want work, please contact me. Los Angeles, California area. Looking forward to discussing legal action against Empire today with you.
SHAME COMPANY, FLORIDA -- I decided to do laminated floors in two rooms so the first thing the saleslady says when she walks in is today is your lucky day because we have a 50/50/50 sale. She does all the measuring and it's about 350 sq ft. She sits down and comes up with a price of 4600$, I almost fell out of my chair. Then she goes with the 50/50/50 sale, we cut the 4600$ down to 2300$ like she's doing me the biggest favor in the world.
Then I showed her an estimate that I got the day before that was for 1045$ From US Wood Flooring here in South FL. I asked if she will match or beat that price. She put me on the phone with one of her bosses. He basically was trying to get me worried not to go with that product from that company. I've done plenty of home remodels and renovations in my life and the product from the cheaper price was better. Bottom line is that Empire Today overcharges people that don't know any better about cost of flooring.
Hi Lenny, thank you for bringing your pricing concerns to our attention. We'd like to know more about the situation, and we will be following up with you shortly. You can also reach us at 888-588-2315 x4195 or email@example.com. Thank you. Jeanette Ramey, National Customer Service Manager
2918 BRICK CHURCH PIKE, NASHVILLE, TENNESSEE -- ( This is a letter I sent to the company via the email address I was supplied. No other contact information would be given to me.)
I am writing to notify you of how unhappy I am with the service and treatment my husband and I have received. On May 21, we placed an order for new vinyl to be put in our kitchen and laundry room. I paid in full that day for the total cost of the materials and installation order in the amount of $1349.00 We were told that it would all be done and finished in a week. The installation should only take 4-5 hours or so. The installation was scheduled for Tuesday June 1. Our check was cashed a week later.
The installer called about 9am that morning to notify me that he would be at our home soon but needed to stop and Home Depot for supplies. He said to expect him in about 30 minutes. An hour and a half later he called to tell me that he forgot something at the office and had to go back to the warehouse and pick it up. He finally arrived that day around 1pm with another installer. This installer's name was ************** and during his time at our home repeated told us how we didn't need to contact Empire for any other work because he could get us a much better deal through him and the people he works with.
He stapled our floor down along the edges - telling us that that is how you install flooring now because it's the best way ( I don't know . I believed since he was your installer he must know what he was doing.). He and his fellow installer informed me that I could not walk on the floor for at least 24 hours. They even made sure to point out a small area that I could walk but no where else.
The next morning when I could "walk" on the floor is when I noticed the horrible job that was done. The laundry room ( one of the areas I supposedly couldn't even get to in order to look at) was cut 1/2" short of the wall. That was a large star shaped tear alongside the doorway from the laundry room and kitchen where the installer had glued it back. The Staples that he placed in the floor were so far away from the wall that we wouldn't be able to cover with the molding/quarter round. The floor had huge air bubbles in it and anytime I sweep the floor it would roll along with the broom. The vinyl would create waves and rolls when my computer chair was rolled on it as well. I called that very day and filed a complaint ( Ref#1-556817376).
I was told by customer service that they would have to schedule for the "review" installer to come out and determine if "it really needed to be completely replaced or if it can just be repaired". I was told that you only have one person who is qualified to determine these matters and I would have to schedule a time with them. The time was scheduled for him to come out on Tuesday June 8th. We would be his first stop that morning.
June 8th at 9am ( after I called to determine where the installer was) I received a phone call from the installer, who in broken English informed me that he wouldn't be able to be at my house for at least another 2.5 more like 3 hours. I asked why since I had things I needed to take care of. He told me that he had other customers to take care of first and that he wouldn't be there for another 3 hours. I verified with him that he would be there around 11:30am or 12:00pm and he once again repeated that it would probably not be til 12:00pm. I told him that I would run my errands and be back to meet him then. I got home at 11:20am to find a message on my machine. The installer had gotten there at 11:10am and left stating that we had to reschedule. When I called and my husband called we were both told that the installer could not come back out that day. We were told that we should have stayed at the house that it was our job not your company's to arrange our schedule around them. Once again we were told that he was the "only one" qualified to check the floor to see how bad it was they would not send a manager or anyone else out.
After called again, my husband took off Friday June 11 to be able to have installer come out to look at the horrible installation that had been done. ( Of course this was a different guy. Not the "only one" installer that I had dealt with on Tuesday.) This installer confirmed the installation was completely unacceptable and arrangements were once again made. Because our family vacation / daughter's National Dance competition was the following week, we scheduled for the replacement installation to be done on Tuesday, June 22. ( The first Tuesday after getting back.)
I received a voicemail message this morning ( June 22) at 8:15am stating that your company couldn't preform the installation today and it would have to be rescheduled again. The vinyl for the order was somehow left off the truck. It was left in the warehouse in Atlanta, GA. When I called back and spoke with ********* in the local office, I asked why it hadn't been shipped before now and held locally for this job. "Well that's not how we do it" was the reply I got. She told me that it was standard policy to order and ship the supplies/merchandise the night before the job. The order should have been placed and shipped into the local warehouse/holding dock to make sure all supplies were ready for the job but when I mentioned this, she once again told me that was not how you handle it.
After crying and letting her know how I was upset because this has been ongoing for a month now, she said she could "put a $100. credit to our bill for the inconvenience". I made sure to let her know that I had already paid in full and the check had been cashed and I still don't have my floor done. She never even acknowledged that she or your company were sorry for all the trouble. When I asked for the address and name of a person to contact, I was given this email and told that I might just have to keep sending emails. I couldn't talk to anyone or get a physical address.
I have since contacted the sales representative who sold us the floor to notify her that I will not be ordering the hardwood flooring that we had discussed and I would never recommend Empire to anyone because of everything we have had to deal with and the way we have been treated.
My washing machine, dryer, and stove are now out on my front porch. My refrigerated, dining room table, boxes of pantry items, and computer file cabinet, computer, etc. are all in my living room. My China cabinet, computer desk and various items are in my garage. I have been living like this for a month now because of these circumstances. I just got back from a weeks vacation and have laundry to do and now I can't even do that today.
I want a FULL REFUND of my money. I don't want to have to deal with any of this or your company anymore. I intend on contacting the Better Business Bureau and filing a formal complaint. I will not be doing any further business nor will I recommend Empire to anyone else because of the way we have been treated.
If you need more details or further information to facilitate the refund of money you can reach us at ********** home # or my husband's cell number of ************. We can also be reached at the following address:
Thank you for bringing your installation experience to our attention. We apologize for any inconvenience this situation may have caused you. Our customer service team is currently reviewing your concerns, and will continue to be in contact with you
PHILADELPHIA, PENNSYLVANIA -- January 2011, a knowledgeable Empire representative measured my home for carpet. Within one week the newly installed carpet looked older and worn than my previous carpet. I called and my sales rep made a second visit. He agreed that the carpet had to be replaced. I did not have much choice. I am a wheelchair user and truthfully there were two maybe three choices of ugly carpet.
Regretting that I ever purchased Empire carpet I selected the second ugly carpet. The installation job was horrible. My wood was cut – there were so many piece work and the seams were done terribly. Again I called and Empire arranged for my sales rep to be out. Again, he agreed that the job was terrible and damage had been done.
Between the second and third installation I had become gravely ill. I started having strong reservations about a third time and told Empire's Customer Service Manager Lisa, that I was not sure. By the time I recovered, I thought it best that I try a third time.
One of the reasons that I had initially called Empire is that Empire offered Interest Free for 12 months. Why did I pay $98.00 per month when interest was to be free?
Most important, until an Empire Customer is totally satisfied they are also not to be charged interest. Interest was tacked on to my bill after February 2012. When I spoke to Lisa she explained that the bank is responsible and after the third installation was complete, Empire will notify the bank and the interest calculated will be removed and my interest free for a year would begin.
Guess what? The carpet was installed a third time. I was so excited that it was done with only 2 seams I called immediately to tell Lisa “I am happy.” Unfortunately that was only short-lived. I have three issues with Empire now, which are:
1. The interest was not removed and charges continue to mount. Each time I called Lisa she has never returned my calls. Thus, I am still being charged interest and not given interest free!
2. Although 2 seams are better than a dozen or so during the second installation, there is a big seam a few feet from entering the living room. On the sides close to the wall, the seam looks great but directly in the middle it looks as if I have torn carpet.
3. The carpet does not feel or wear like the previous carpet. Although the third carpet was installed April 3, 2012 it shows all kinds of dirt spots despite it is low pile commercial grade tweed. It seems that the previous carpet installed October 27, 2011 may have been different.
At this point I would love for Empire to take up their carpet, refund my money and we call it a day. I can never replace the plants the second installers placed out on the deck and the sun (in October) burned the plants, as well as the cut wood; the three times it cost me for Personal Assistant overtime; and all the aggravation and work.
Knowing that I don't stand a chance against a big company I need Empire to explain why:
1. I had to pay $98.* per month during the Interest Free
2. Interest compounded was not removed after the third installation as explained by Customer Service Manager.
3. Interest Free for one year when Customer is totally satisfied with carpet installation
Rather than writing my Empire experience as a complaint, I thought it best to inform. Empire did come back and replace the ugly carpet twice. Most important now, perhaps someone will advise what I can do. I am going to send this information to the Better Business Bureau. I may have also been overcharged on two accounts too (I am paying for an original carpet that had to be removed and the quality of Empire's pad is poor ( there was never a price adjustment).
Marlene, we truly regret the issues that you have experienced post-installation. We understand your frustration and your concerns with your product and financing, and we're disappointed, as this is not the level of service that we expect for our customers. We will be reaching out to you soon to discuss the current status of your situation. Please contact us with any questions at 888-588-2315 x4195 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you. Rebekah Clerk, National Customer Service Manager
MICHIGAN -- The only thing I can say is, DO NOT USE EMPIRE. We called and had a sales guy sent to the house and needed just a basic Stainmaster carpet for the entire upstairs and the stairs themselves. Even though the estimate seemed a bit high, he was assuring us that this was good carpet. So, we went ahead and purchased the carpet. I asked him why it was so high, he said the order an extra 10% carpet....
So, the carpet gets installed. First off, it took FOREVER! But that was fine as long as it looked good. I left for work and my husband stayed home for the rest of the install. I get home and we were both wondering what the deal was with all the seams all over the hallway, leading into all the bedrooms. The hallway is not that big that it would require so many pieces of carpet. When I called, I asked them to send different installers....
A week goes by.....
The same installers show up. They cut the top of the carpet, try to blend the seems, then ask if I had a little piece of carpet. Confused, I said "no". He argued that they left me a tiny square? Then he says to forget it. So I hear him pulling up the carpet and doing something to it. They leave after telling me that the seems are still there, but should "settle" I just need to vacuum them a lot in all different directions.
My husbands calls a few hours lateer, I explain what happened, he says that they took a huge roll of our carpet with them. It now clicks that they took our carpet and we have all these seems because they are piecing scraps together.
I call empire 4 days ago, no call back.
Today while vaccuming the steps, all the carpet is comoing up, right down to the tack strips. There are chunks of carpet coming out everywhere also.
I call back, again put on hold, and told someone will call me back. At this point I am just hoping they come and take there awful carpet back, and give me my hard earned money back. I am truly hoping that you listen to this post and save yourself your time and money. I am sick to my stomach over this. We saved and waited for 2 years to get carpet.
WHAT A WASTE.
Bethany, we regret the issues that you've been experiencing post-installation, as we always want our customers to enjoy their finished product. We are committed to working with our customers to help resolve whatever problems may arise, so we're disappointed that you've had trouble getting your concerns addressed. Your experience is not what we want to provide to our customers, and we will be reaching out to you soon to work towards a resolution. If you have any questions, please call us at 888-588-2315 x4195 or email us at email@example.com. Thank you. Rebekah Clerk, National Customer Service Manager
I contracted with Empire Carpet to install carpeting in 4 rooms and a vinyl floor in my kitchen during their "Buy 2 Rooms and Get the rest for free" sale. That was my biggest mistake ever.
I met with the salesman that reviewed my home on a Saturday morning. He was nice. That's the best thing I can say about him (more on him later). I purchased 5 total rooms of flooring that was to be installed the following Tuesday (all carpet) and Friday (vinyl kitchen floor).
Only one person that showed up on the carpeting team spoke English...not good. He promised me when he arrived he would do a professional job in all of the rooms. That pleased me. About 4 hours later, he told me he only had enough carpeting to put in 3 of the 4 bedrooms and that he would have to come out again to finish the job. I told him to either credit me BACK the money I paid that Tuesday morning or bring another role of carpeting to finish the job today. HE SAID HE COULDN'T DO EITHER!!! I quickly got on the phone to my salesman who could make absolutely no decision whatsoever when I explained the situation to him. All my salesman could do is apologize.
Finally, after a couple hours on the phone with the Empire "team"...they agreed to take off $750 my Tuesday bill. I was happy with that at the time (but wait! There will be more on this!) Since I agreed to have the vinyl floor put in on Friday, I stated I wanted the carpeting team there at the exact same time as the vinyl floor people to minimize the time I would be out of work...
The vinyl team showed up Friday morning and finished early Friday afternoon. The carpeting team arrived at 2:00pm Friday afternoon as the vinyl team was leaving. I placed numerous calls to the Empire team...nobody cared. Nobody agreed to do anything. I was out of work another entire day.
The vinyl looks nice in my kitchen...however, I have a sliding door to a bathroom off of my kitchen, and they put a threshold in that blocks the sliding door from opening. I had to schedule a time for the Empire Team to come and fix my sliding door problem.
Also, when they were installing the carpeting in one of the bedrooms, they broke a wood threshold between the carpeting and the hallway. This took 3 (yes, THREE) visits from the Empire team to fix. All of this time I had to miss work.
The lying Empire Today team NEVER gave me a credit for my $750...they only told me they did. Empire Today's management team did not care. They just stated "your work is done, and you've paid your money".
I will never use Empire Today team again. What a worthless outfit. If you enjoy headaches, missing work, getting lied to, and listen to the English speaking Empire employees complain about the company they work for, then by all means...please use Empire Today. Everybody else should stay far, far away.
Kevin, we're sorry for the inconveniences you were caused before and after your product's installation. It's my understanding you've spoken with a member of our Customer Service Team yesterday and that we were able to verify that your credit was processed approximately two weeks ago. It's my understanding that you're satisfied at this time, but if there's anything else we can do for you, please let me know. You can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or contact me via phone at 888-588-2315 x 4195. Rebekah Clerk, National Customer Service
333 NORTHWEST AVE, NORTHLAKE, ILLINOIS -- [snip - no names please] the salesman for Empire Today LLC, made several claims regarding the performance of their laminate flooring. We told him we had dogs; in fact, the dogs were under food. We shared with him our concern about 2 dog-related issues: 1) scratches from the dogs nails, and 2) moisture (if you catch my drift). [snip] said that the laminate flooring was very resistant to scratches and dents. He said the floor would not dent even if we dropped a pot on it. He also said that the boards were tested under water and did not de-laminate. We asked him what we should used to clean the floor and he said that we should go on to Empire's website.
[snip], also told us the boards were random length and that each board was unique (a different pattern from all the others).
The floor was laid the next day. As the floor was being laid we noticed an oily film on the floor. We asked the installers about this and they said that the film should come up after cleaning. I asked them what we should used to clean the floor and they said just water. The boards were not random length. There were only 5 different boards. The installers laid them so that identical boards were laid next to each other with 8 inch offsets. This gave the floor a bizarre diagonal pattern.
The day after the floor was laid I set out to clean the oil film off the floor, because it looked terrible and left footprints everywhere you walked. I went on Empire's website to look for cleaning instructions. On the webpage titled "Laminate Flooring Subhead Maintenance" it advises me to vacuum frequently or to use a dust mop. On the webpage titled "Cleaning" there are no recommendations. Well, I know that vacuuming or dustmoping will not remove an oily film, so I used water. I put tap water in a spray bottle and moped with a microfiber dust mop putting only a minimal amount of water on the floor. It didn't do any good. The floor still looked terrible and where ever you stepped you left a footprint in the oily film.
In the next few days I tried various things to clean. I thought that may be the fact that our tap water has both chlorine and fluoride in it might have something to do with it, So I cleaned the floor again with filtered water (no chlorine, no fluoride). It still didn't look any better. So I went online and Googled ways to clean laminate flooring. Several people recommended 1 cup of vinegar in a gallon of water, so I tried that. That didn't work. Other people recommended equal parts of water, alcohol and vinegar, so I tried that. That didn't work. To this day I have found nothing that will clean the only film off the floor.
Exactly 5 days and 1 hour after the floor was installed we notice that several boards were starting to bubble up on the edges. The lamination was coming apart. By this time we were quite frustrated with this floor and decided we just didn't want it.
I called Empire. After a lot of trouble (customer service offers no customer service), I was finally able to speak with [snip], the National Customer Service Manager. I told her my complaints and she said she would send out an independent flooring inspector.
Between that telephone call and the inspection we noticed more boards becoming de-laminated in addition to several dents (we have not dropped anything on the floor). In fact, every week that goes by we find more boards coming delaminated.
The inspector came and did his thing. I asked him how to clean the floor and he said to use a half cup of ammonia to 2 gallons of water. So after he left I tried that solution, but that was the worst of all!
Empire has offered to replace the damaged boards but has offered no assistance or advice on how to clean the oily film off the floor. More boards are becoming delaminated every week. We can not live with a floor that is constantly needing to have boards replaced or a floor that looks terrible because it can't be cleaned. We believe the floor is doubly defective.
We have filed a complaint with the Illinois Attorney General and have file a civil lawsuit (small claims) against Empire for the cost of the floor ($5900).
People who were NOT helpful:
[snip - no names please]
Thank you for bringing your flooring experience to our attention. We apologize for any inconvenience, and our customer service team would like to work with you to explore a resolution. Please contact us at 800-588-2300 so we can assist you.
Consumer Advocate Team
Empire Today, LLC
BAYSIDE, NEW YORK -- 1st day:
one guy came to do estimate and said $9400 for about 600 sqt floor. Expensive..but what can I do..signed for paper.
4 guys came around 9am.
A little later, had problem about removing old hard woodfloor b/c I didn't get permission but solved it in 1 hr. Plan: Not remove old one and put new floor above it. now it's $8900...still expensive.. 4 guys went to lunch about 2 hr 30mins. removed some of moldings and old fake laminate. went home about 4pm.
4 guys came. they didn't go for break. Couldn't do more work about 4pm b/c they didn't bring enough moldings. so they did some small work and left about 6pm. OK..I can wait.. Until that time, I was very happy to have new floor with empire.
3 guys came and also didn't go for lunch. When I asked something, guy A said they still have lots of details to do. 'OK..then..OK'. I even bought PIZZA for them. They almost finished but they didn't do 'Details'. Some of my walls are broken when they removed moldings and one small molding wasn't nailed which means they didn't do 'DETAILS'. I also see some holes on my walls. They tried to leave those like that but I told guy A to cover the hole. He just did 2 which I pointed at but I found more when they left.
When they removed old moldings, they took out one of outlet line. And guy B tried to tell me 'Be careful with that outlet'. He tried to leave that outlet lying on the floor. It was INSIDE of the wall NOT LYING on the FLOOR. Of course I told him to put it on the wall but lines still stays OUT OF THE WALL.
It looks so ugly. I need to call someone to fix it. And guy C came to us and asked 'what's going on with it?' and the guy B said "Don't speak in English". and they kept talking in Spanish.
They were in a hurry to leave. I also asked to guy A 'Is this how empire working?' but didn't get proper answer for that. He just covered 2 hole that I pointed.
They left. They even avoided eye contact with me last few hours. I found more holes and broken wall and details are very very ugly.
If anybody wants to do the New floor, Don't call empire. If you don't have any choice except empire, and if you are woman and not American, call someone who is American and if possible call MALE person. They wouldn't do work like they did to me. I'm very sorry I couldn't show the pictures I took after they left.
Oh, I almost forgot. I needed to make emergency call to sales person who came the 1st day to estimate. It was about 6pm but I'm pretty sure it was before 6pm.
He picked it up and said 'hello hello' and hang up. I called again of course and he turned his cell phone off. I called few times more but it didn't go through.
He set up his cell phone that wouldn't let me leave a message. No wonder, he didn't call me back next day.
Is this how empire working with people? I will never work with them again and
I wouldn't let people who I know work with them either.
ATLANTA, GEORGIA -- Saw the catchy TV ad. Called to schedule free appointment. Appointment was set, then they inquired if all the decision makers could be at the appointment because they will be unable to leave any samples. Told them my wife would be there. At the appointment, they quoted three choices ( that must have been all they had).
They measured the rooms and stairways and quoted enough sqft to allow for over 20% scrap. I know because I measured precisely. They included 400 square feet for two carpeted stairways. By my measurement, the finished product on the stairs would have been 165 sqft of carpeted surface. That comes out to 235 sqft wasted, over 100% scrap on the stairs. That's the best their installers can do??
The sales representative left without an signed agreement. I called the Cust Svc number. I requested a copy of the contract that they prepared at the estimate. I requested the manufacturer name for the selected carpet style. I requested What is the carpet made of? I requested the Face Weight. I requested a copy of the manufacturer warranty and installation warranty. Guess what! That information cannot be presented in writing prior to completion of the installation and the Sales Rep should have discussed all of that at the estimate. I cannot see the contract unless I sign it first and wait for installation before I can have a copy. Customer Svc can only provide the name of the Manufacturer (Mohawk). Any further information would have to come from he Sales Rep who does not return my calls. Well, this was the first company we approached for an estimate. We have seen enough to smell a rat. All I can say is Do they Really think they can sell me a "pig in a poke"? Ok the pig phrase is not a joke, Just go ask your oldest acquaintance what it means.
Thank you for bringing your concerns to our attention. We never want our customers to be disappointed in our service, and we'd be happy to answer your questions about our products and warranties. Unfortunately, we cannot locate your account with the information in your post. Please call us at 888-588-2315 x4195 or email your contact information to email@example.com, and we will follow up with you to learn more about the situation. Thank you. Jeanette Ramey, National Customer Service Manager