Empire Carpet Complaint - Pushy, Unprofessional Salesman
We requested a 'free estimate' from Empire Carpet to install berber rugs in our 2nd floor bedrooms and hallway. The salesman showed up ontime and was friendly and personable at first. After he took the measurements we sat down at the kitchen table to look at samples. Before he went out to the car he asked me which kind of carpet I wanted. I said berber so he brought back a book for berber that contained 9 different colors and a book for plush (which is the complete opposite). The samples only have Empire Carpet's logo on them and not the actual manufacturer's name. In the commercials and on the web site, Empire claims they carry all of the popular brands but won't tell you which on is which.
The salesman starts writing down a bunch of numbers on a blank sheet of paper. He starts by telling me "Here is the regular price and here is the deal I'm going to give you". The regular price was around $2000 and his price was $1600. When I asked him if "His Price" was part of the 60% deal that is always advertised on the web-site, he wouldn't give me a straight answer.
This was the first quote we had seen and we weren't sure if it was fair or not so we wanted to continue with seeking other estimates. He explained to us that the process is very simple. The installers will come on the day we schedule and all we have to do is hand them our credit card before they start their work... Oh and we have to cut him a $100 deposit on the spot to secure the deal and the appointment, all before anyone does any work. Is this typical? He assured us that we would get our deposit back if we cancelled within 3 days. As soon as we said no, we're not committing today, he flipped a switch and his nice guy salesman attitude turned hostile. He started yelling "You're going to make me drive back here again to collect my deposit?!" First off all, what makes you think I'm going to call you back after that outburst. He might have had a chance with us if he didn't have a reaction like that.
So after he started talking in circles for several minutes to get us to change our mind and he realized we weren't going to, he angrily gathered up his weak samples and stuffed my estimate in his briefcase. When I asked him for a copy of my estimate he snapped at me and said "You know what the price is, it's $1588!" And then he let himself out. He then sat in his car in my driveway for another 4 minutes thinking that I was going to run out there with a check after all that.
I became obsessed with the experience and searched the internet to find that hundreds of people around the country had the same experience. How is this company rated A+ with the BBB? I've read other reviews about people who have actually used Empire and the installation quality had a lot of issues too.
I ended up going with a local flooring company and the salesman took the time to explain to me that since I'm putting carpet down for the first time (over hardwood) that I would need to shave the bottom of my closet and bedroom doors because of the padding and carpet will elevate the floor making them difficult to close. He also explained the difference of going with carpet that comes off a smaller roll which means I'd have seams that could come apart over time vs. a larger roll where I'd be paying for more due to a lot of waste. I will always stick with local small businesses in the future and will gladly pay an extra couple of hundred dollars if I have to, to know that my money is going to an honest hard working professional.
Company Response on 12/21/2010:
Thank you for bringing your sales experience to our attention. We apologize for any inconvenience this has caused you. We are dedicated to service and satisfaction; please contact us at 800-588-2300 to assist you.
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