WYLIE, TEXAS -- We have a small house (about 1200 sq ft), and needed carpet. We received 3 estimates with Empire actually being the least expensive. Sales representative brought in the "high quality" samples of the carpet color I preferred (grey), all 4 of them. He expounded on the fantastic warranty of the sample I chose (while NEVER giving me a warranty in hand). I should have bailed then and there, my bad.
Now we are off and running with the "calculations." He is figuring square footage x 3.141 divided by quantum theory factoring in the time space continuum. So for the living room hall and small back bedroom we come to just under $3000. Remember, my home is only just at 1200 sq ft, but it's still just a tad cheaper than the other 2 quotes, and Empire is reputable right!? SIDE NOTE: I was never given a copy of the contract, it was to be emailed to me... NEVER HAPPENED. So we signed, paid, and scheduled.
On installation day, I move all the small knick-knacks, etc., and vacuumed, so they can move the furniture. When the installers start moving the furniture from the living room over into the kitchen, one of them kicks over my heavy, large glass dog bowl, and put a crack in the brand new porcelain tile we had just laid, as well as causing a fantastic water mess. Sigh. I chalk that up to my fault, perhaps I should not have left it on the floor, and I can spend an hour or two prying it out, scraping it down, and replacing it with an extra. Installation begins and is finished pretty rapidly. I am asked to do a walk-through, and all seems well enough, but I am no carpet expert.
Fast forward 1 1/2 years later... Anywhere that we actually walk, it's matting (I vacuum with a Kirby) and all of the thresholds are mashed down so much the tack strips not only show, you have the joy of FEELING them. The foot traffic being myself and my husband, and a medium-sized dog. SIDE NOTE: The tiny linen closet in the hall was not done, I don't know why. I didn't even notice till my mom pointed it out. How on earth would they not do a tiny linen closet? Would that have been another $100?
On the advice of a friend I started contact with Empire in September. My original "ticket" was closed with Empire claiming it was due to MY not returning phone calls. I informed them that we are in the age of technology and I will go ahead and request my phone records in hard copy which will show how many times I have called, and how many times Empire has called. Crickets. I also informed them that when I did return the call, I was told my ticket would now go to Warranty Repairs and they had 4 business days to get back to me. They did not get back to me.
Long story short, I am back at square one after having contact with them no less than 8 times and just as many people, all of whom are surprised and confused about the issues. My most recent contact Megyn, supposedly has me scheduled for an inspection November 3 between 10 and 3. Inspections are only scheduled on Mondays and Thursdays.
This will probably be in vain, as I have read too many customer complaints about the inspection being a farce and they always deny warranty coverage and the company of Empire will not do it on their own outside of warranty. FYI it took me a month to get a copy of the warranty sent to me.
My next step is filing an official complaint with the BBB as Empire is registered with them. Empire has an A rating with the BBB, but that is because they are forced to make some sort of agreement with disgruntled customers, of which there have been hundreds, to maintain the A rating. If anything changes, or if some sort of solution is reached I will update post.
We have read your review and are disappointed to hear that your product is not meeting your expectations We want to learn more and we'll be in contact with you soon to discuss your concerns.
SAN ANTONIO, TEXAS -- Contact Empire and they had a sales representative out the next day (Saturday). He arrived on time, was polite, took measurements, selected the laminate floor, and received a price quote within two hours. Received a call the following Monday from Empire asking if I wanted to go ahead and have a financing representative drop by to finalize and schedule installation.
When he came, I began to get that uneasy feeling when he said he needed to take measurements, and then I could pick out the flooring. Wait! I just spent two hours on Saturday doing this part. When I voiced concern, he told me there would not be any more hiccups, and even discounted the final price a bit. Feeling a bit better. He advised that installation would begin on Thursday and last through Saturday. I let him know I had a medical appointment Friday afternoon that could not be rescheduled, and the installation crew would need to accommodate. He let me know it was not an issue, and to tell the lead on the installation crew when they arrived.
Thursday came, the crew was on-time, and things seemed to be going very well. I let the lead know that Friday I had an appointment and they would need to break off two hours early. His response to me was that he comes in from Austin, does not work on Saturday, and would like to stay and work while I was at my appointment. What? First, I was told work was Thursday through Saturday. Second, stay and work in the home without me there? Don't think so. I let him know I would do what I could, but the appointment could not be rescheduled.
Friday came, and progress on the floor was good. Until I reminded him of the appointment. Once I did, he said he needed to get the job finished that day, and needed to stay in the home whilst I was away. I then made it clear that I was not going to allow that, and that they needed to finish on Saturday. To which he responded again that he comes in from Austin, and needed to finish today. If not, he would have to come back Monday. So, I told him, Monday it is.
During the weekend I had time to evaluate the work being done, and was beginning to find small things I was not happy about. But, I held off until the work was done on Monday came and the work was supposedly completed. During my walkthrough I found many issues. First, they had to cut the front portion of each step to make the square. They were originally rounded off, which created an issue with laying the laminate flat. Understandable… However while cutting, the workers tore into my banister with their saw, chewing up the wood. When I brought it to the leads attention, his response was, “I did my best.” What???
Next, the reduction of the stair size left a hole in the wall between the stair and the molding. The lead told me he was not responsible for fixing or repairing that because it is part of the original stairs. What the…? You cut my stairs to accommodate the laminate, leaving a gaping hole!!! The final straw was finding a two-and-a-half foot scratch deep into the laminate in the master bedroom. The lead said he had no more materials, and would fix after he ordered more at a later date.
Needless to say, I did not sign the final paperwork. I then called the main office and the lady who answered said she would contact the installation manager. I asked if she could have him call me because I had pictures and wanted to explain. To which she replied, “No. He will call the crew.” Really??? I'm the one who is having a not-so-good experience here. Not the crew. Needless to say, I have not received a call back from anyone. The lead seemed to want to appease me, but I'm not happy at all. Posting images to show that lousy work.
I have to say, the turn-around time once I posted this issue was outstanding. My hat is off to Rex and Billy for stepping in and ensuring my issues were being attended to. The crew arrived shortly after Billy showed up, and an offer was made to make recompense for the damaged banister. I will revisit and post an update once this has been finalized.
Hi Gerard, thank you for bringing your concerns to our attention. We understand that we've been in contact with you about this issue and that the repairs have been completed. Please don't hesitate to contact us at email@example.com with any additional questions or concerns. Thank you. Bill Allivato, National Customer Service Manager
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, **, 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, ** (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 ** 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 ** 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. ** 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 canceling 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, **, 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
CUMMING, GEORGIA -- We have had Empire carpeting out to our house to quote carpeting our first floor and second floor carpeting needs as well as hardwood floors in our entry way and kitchen. We gave Empire the business in two segments due to my wife's inability to help me get the house ready for the installers. She has had three major surgeries in the last year and a half which limits what she can do. We started by having the first floor, stairs, and upstairs hall done. On the first installation we voiced our concern that where they had seamed the carpet was very noticeable to us. We were told that the seams would disappear over time.
We had Empire out again in April to install carpeting in the four bedrooms upstairs, as well as hardwood floors in our entryway. We had told our salesman that we were unhappy with the seams from the first installation. We were told that they could be fixed, so we placed our business with him for the upstairs. The carpet we purchased is the same throughout both floors. After the upstairs installation, there were noticeable seams in every room upstairs as well. The installers just as before said the seams will disappear within two months. They have not.
When I called customer service to get help with this issue, I was told I was out of warranty but they might be able to look at the carpeting that was just installed in April. I still have my Terrace level to carpet, and the hardwood in the kitchen. I am glad I found out about their lack of customer service and poor follow up before buying for the balance of my projects. This was by far my worst experience in home improvement ever. I hope that all who read this come away with a better feel that the deal is not a deal.
We are disappointed to hear about your installation experience. Please email your concerns and account information to email@example.com, and mention Yelp/My3cents in the subject line for further assistance.
FREMONT, CALIFORNIA -- After viewing a TV advertisement - 50/50/50 for flooring installation with Empire I called to schedule an appointment. The appointment had a 2 hour window of 3:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m. The representative arrived at 2:50 p.m.. His greeting was short without offering identification and no visual identification. He was casually dressed and drove an unidentified car (personal vehicle). His introduction was with a first name only. So inquired about his identification as he began rushing through to laying out examples of laments and carpets. He allowed me to photo his driver's license and supposedly CSLB Iicense ID.
He went throughout the house measuring, writing down measurements, and calculating numbers. The price seemed reasonable considering my kitchen floor would be replaced with laminate, 2 staircases, hallway and 2 bedrooms carpeted. However, this scenario fell apart when thoroughly reading the contract. I had to ask for the Right to Cancel contract and what to expect the day of service and how long the job would take. A red flag came to mind. So, following my second reading I discovered the date on the Cancellation agreement (6/19/2017) was a future date from the start date (5/19/2017) of service, nullifying the right to cancel.
So I called to inquire about this mistake, but first asked for license number of contractor. Empire operators on 3 different calls gave me excuses about not knowing who would be contracted for the job. I stated wanting to cancel service agreement for installation. I was transferred to the cancellation department and received a confirmation number. On the contract it stated only a written cancellation would cancel the agreement. However, the operator in the cancellation department stated it wasn't necessary. So I canceled my credit card used and am waiting 10 days to receive credit back on the card.
We sincerely apologize for your experience and assure you that your concerns are important to us. We would like to follow up with you to further discuss your concerns, but unfortunately are unable to locate your account information. Please email your concerns and account information to firstname.lastname@example.org, and mention my3cents in the subject line.
BOSTON, MASSACHUSETTS -- What a HORRIFIC Company. Run away!!! I ordered new carpet and the salesperson was super nice, not pushy and I decided to purchase the carpet. Got a great price. After that, all went downhill. They were supposed to install the carpet at 8:30 a.m. Didn't show up. I called and spoke to a manager who said they'd be at my home between 9-11. Didn't show up. Then I got an automated message from them saying they'd be there "sometime in the afternoon." What? No time frame? Then I called and spoke to another manager. He was rude, nasty, and couldn't care less that I was waiting all day for carpet installation. Told me "too bad lady." Unreal.
Finally showed up at 1:30 and the installers had no idea about my job. They took 6 hours to complete the job and were at my house until 7:30 p.m. RIDICULOUS! I also ordered a runner. They didn't have it (big surprise). Two days later I get a call from a Manager saying my runner would be delivered the next day. That morning I got an automated call saying the runner would be delivered later in the day. 5:00... no runner. 6:00... no runner. I called customer service. They said they couldn't reach the installer. 7:00... no runner.
Called again. They told me the installer was busy until 10:00 p.m. and that I could get my runner after that or wait two weeks. I did not want to wait the two weeks since at this point I IN NO WAY trust these people. 10:30 p.m. runner is delivered to my house and it's not bound correctly! I took it anyway just so I could be done with these people.
I posted a review on Yelp two days later and apparently, they have people watching Yelp. I received a message saying they never want their customers to be upset and they'd like to talk to me and asked me to reply to their email. I replied to their email. It's two days later, nobody has contacted me! Thus confirming this company doesn't give a damn about their customers! I'd RUN AWAY and NEVER use them again.
We appreciate you bringing your concerns to our attention, and sincerely regret to hear that you were inconvenienced by this matter. We will continue to follow up until a solution is reached.
ALEXANDRIA, VIRGINIA -- I wish I could give Empire a zero rating. The experience began well enough with a knowledgeable sales representative but immediately went downhill with the installation of expensive (5-figure price range) hardwood flooring, part of a large scale home renovation. The flooring is beautiful but the installers did not bring the requested baseboards and I was told I did not order them - this is not true. I wanted the baseboards to match other, newer ones in my home and the installers simply covered up old, discolored baseboards with shoe moulding.
The installers did not cover any surface in my home with plastic so there was dirt, sand and dust everywhere - not only on my floors and walls, but also all over my furniture. When I asked that my coats be covered with plastic, the installer took an old, paint stained piece discarded by my construction crew and threw it over 3 of 12 coats in my closet. Wood shavings were all over my balcony, many behind and on top of the equipment being used by my construction crew. When I called to complain about the baseboards and the filth and debris left behind, I was offered a reduced price to install new baseboards, and given a date and time frame for the work.
I told the representative it would have to be a morning appointment; my work was scheduled for the afternoon causing yet ANOTHER setback. If I had not PAID IN FULL upfront BEFORE the work was completed (as mandated by Empire), I would have held out enough $$ to hire someone else to install baseboards in a very small room. I am disgusted and dismayed by the entire Empire experience, and I will never recommend them nor use them for any other needs. Totally distressing experience.
We appreciate you bringing your concerns to our attention, and sincerely regret to hear that your installation experience did not meet your expectations. We will be in contact with you shortly to learn more and start working towards a solution.
Thank you for your patience.
-ET Customer Support
VISTA, CALIFORNIA -- Their salesmen are slick, promise high quality, etc. etc. etc., for discount prices. We agreed to a contract with Empire Carpet in Vista, CA to install wood veneer flooring and carpeting in several rooms. All in all, the installers were on time and generally professional. They did the wood flooring first. It was a challenging job with adjacent stone tile steps/flooring (sunken living room) which doesn't exactly lend itself to the wood veneer trim straight lines. There were some floor cables in one room that required some extra work to hide and they did this. That's the good.
The bad: Nearly all the veneer to stone transition pieces, mostly quarter round, were conspicuously uneven against the stone tiles. There was a brick fireplace in the living room, surrounded by flat transition pieces, with conspicuous gaps between the brick and veneer transitions. This was done with a premium on speed rather than quality.
Fortunately, we had them leave enough surplus planks and trim so that I could go back and redo most all the transitions properly. I used an angle grinder with a sandpaper disk to "level" the stone at the transition joints. I had to COMPLETELY redo the fireplace transition as it was inadequate. There is one area in the living room with 3 adjacent, identical veneer planks - a no no when installing veneer.
Now to the carpet. They installed carpeting in 3 rooms, promising it to be stain free, durable, easy clean, pet proof, et al. It has been none of that. In the 5 months since installation, the carpet in the most used room (library area) has serious stains (which don't clean up), obvious carpet tracks, and an area where the carpet underlay has apparently failed causing a flattening of the carpet in this area.
My wife has been on the phone with Empire Carpet over a dozen times regarding the carpet deficiencies. They have sent two representatives to "inspect/take pictures" and now have apparently contacted the carpeting manufacturer to arrange for a "3rd party inspection". Her interaction with Empire representatives varies from "everyone is gone for the day, we'll have someone call you (not)" to reasonable customer service reps. We're now awaiting the 3rd party rep.
We regret to hear about your experience. We assure you that concerns are important to us, and we want to help. Unfortunately, we are unable to locate your account with the information provided. Please email your concerns along with your contact and account information to email@example.com so that we can further assist, and mention my3cents in the subject line.
FRESNO, CALIFORNIA -- We had them come out to measure for two rooms of carpet under their 50/50/50 sale. We selected two carpets and signed a contract to install. That very day we saw an ad at a local warehouse that would be 50% less money for a better grade carpet and pad. We immediately followed the terms of the contract and canceled. Even though we were given a cancellation number by phone, we mailed the cancellation as instructed per the agreement on the same day of purchase.
About a week later, I called regarding the return of the deposit to my credit card and was told I would have to wait 10 business days from the date of the cancellation. A few days later a sales representative called and offered us the carpet at a reduced price which was still more than the better grade carpet we could buy. We declined the offer.
After 10 business days, still no credit to my credit card of the deposit so I called again and was told the cancellation date was after the sales representative made her final pitch to us and we would have to wait 10 business days from that! The cancellation reference number was issued to me 10 days before the sales representative called me and we could find no reference in the contract to a last ditch sales effort to determine a cancellation. What a racket to use my money. They bought a lot of bad feelings for small amount of money. Wouldn't it just be better to do the upfront thing and honor the contract and return the money?
Thank you for bringing this matter to our attention. We'd like to address your concerns, but are unable to locate your account with the information provided. Please email your account and contact information to firstname.lastname@example.org, and mention my3cents in the subject line so we can follow up with you.
-ET Customer Support
NEW JERSEY, NEW JERSEY -- I placed an order for laminate flooring for my basement with Empire. We were set to go until the day of install. Where the installers weren't able to install laminate flooring due to humidity in the basement. (Wish the salesperson told me that from the beginning.) Right there was a waste of my time and day off from work. Then I decided to go with carpet in the basement due to humidity.
They come the following week, take off 3 doors and don't bother to put it back. The installer tells me that they don't put back doors. B/c the carpet is high they're unable to re-install it. (The installer told me this after the fact.) On top of that they broke one of my doors and denied it. I followed up with Kathy ** from customer service and she said that Empire does not make any door alterations. I need to hire a handyman to cut and re-install at my expense. They will reimburse me for the broken one. I will never, never order from Empire again.
Our goal is for our customers to have a great experience from start to finish - and we're sorry that didn't happen. We will be following up with you shortly to discuss your concerns further.
-ET Customer Support