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Empire Today

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1.3 out of 5, based on 102 ratings and
135 reviews & complaints.
Company Profile
Empire Today
333 Northwest Avenue
Northlake, IL 60014
800-588-2300 (ph)
www.empiretoday.com
customersupport@empiretoday.com
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Horrible Experience With Wood Laminate Flooring. Poor Installation Cleanup. Problem Resolution = Unkept Promises.
StarEmpty StarEmpty StarEmpty StarEmpty StarBy -
Rating: 1/51

NORTHLAKE, ILLINOIS -- So, today (8/6/19) I had hoped that this nightmare wood laminate installation would find some resolution, but it hasn't. After 3 months of promises, a top management person called me to discuss a technical difference in product name, which no one else had been able to explain, but ultimately he offered no real solution. In short, this company duped me into paying for a wood laminate product that does not live up to its promise of being pet friendly.

My beagle was on the floor once after installation and it resulted in several scratches. About a month ago, a so-called inspector was sent out to review the problem and he used acetone to scrub away the top layer of coating on the floor... Of course, the acetone removed the scratches and the finishing from the floor. After his visit, I was told that the company was going to close my case and it was up to me to hire an inspector if I wanted to pursue the issue any further.

Based on my experience I have to advise against using Empire for installation of wood-based products. The wood laminate installers left a mess of sawdust and packaging strewn across the floor and the company, which does not provide itemized costs of labor vs. product or even price differences between products, did a switcharoo on the laminate that I picked out.

As a result, I have had to install a pet gate to keep my dog from getting onto the wood laminate flooring. He is stressed out and the entire tone of my home has been turned upside down, not to mention, that I fell crossing the gate and has had to incur doctor bills and downtime from my usual activities. Empire's practices of promising one product but delivering another has cost me and my home much more than we could ever have imagined when deciding to update our flooring. Beware.

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Terrible Customer Service And Inferior Product
StarEmpty StarEmpty StarEmpty StarEmpty StarBy -
Rating: 1/51

NEWTON, NEW JERSEY -- In March (less than 7 months ago) I had a $10,000 job done to install laminate flooring on my entire first floor. I replaced 15-20 year old laminate flooring, some carpet and some linoleum and went with a seamless full 1st floor of the main gate ebony oak. Because the flooring in the various rooms had differed the installers recommended a full replacement of the subfloor in order to ensure everything was level. Despite the unexpected cost of $1000 we decided if we were going to do the job we should do it correctly and decided to pay the extra money.

Less than 6 months later I started to notice that around where the floor transitions from the eat in portion of the kitchen to the living room was bending when walked on. At times it seemed so off that you could almost trip over the lil. After a MONTH of arguing with customer service I finally got someone out here to look at it but it was the original installer. First thing he says is 'oh well, with laminate, sometimes it does this, maybe you have moisture'. I pointed out that HE is the one that test the moisture when he did the installation and had confirmed it was fine. I reminded him of this and he said 'oh yeah, there was no issue'.

Although he said he would fix the 3 or 4 planks at the room divider but pointed out 3 other places that it is starting to happen said "this looks like maybe it's the flooring". He also said they cut and measured everything fine but the space could have contracted? What does that even mean? My house is SHRINKING? I mean give me a break. I can't decide if Empire is a complete Fraud or they truly are that inept at the service and product they provide! $11,000!!! This was not a small job. This was an INVESTMENT. I have called endless times. I have done everything I can think of.

I also got an automated call at 9:11 AM today. It stated that my inspector was on his way and that he would definitely be there within 1 or 2 hours. At 1:30 I received a call saying he would be there between 2:30 and 3:45. When I asked the woman who called why the huge difference in timing she said 'well you didn't talk to a real person, you can't expect the time to be accurate". So the calls with the timing are just for fun? I sat here ALL day waiting, he finally came at 4:30. He said he told Empire he would be here late afternoon so that implies they were lying to me.

I was told today by the installer that came (who did the original job) that he would submit his report and that I would be contacted about installation but I couldn't get any sort of timeline or indication of how long that would take and he refused to give me any way that I could contact him to confirm. So now what? I wait around again until someone decides they want to set up the fix? This has been an absolute disaster. Using Empire was the biggest mistake I have ever made.

Update 11/20/2018:

After a total of almost 3 months I have gotten nowhere. These floors aren't worth half of what I paid for them and I got them for 50% off. I'd lower my rating if that were possible.

Company Response 10/19/2018:

Dear Michael, we thank you for bringing this matter to our attention, and regret to hear that your floor is not meeting your expectations. We've located your order, and we'll be in touch with you shortly to learn more, thank you.

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Poor Quality Carpet, Overpriced, Horrible Customer Service
StarEmpty StarEmpty StarEmpty StarEmpty StarBy -
Rating: 1/51

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.

Company Response 10/28/2016:

Dear Melissa,
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.
Thank you.

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Aggravated
StarEmpty StarEmpty StarEmpty StarEmpty StarBy -
Rating: 1/51

MIDDLETOWN, CONNECTICUT -- I ordered close to $7,000.00 worth of carpet. 3 install dates because of the size of the order and timing it needed to be done in. First room of carpet went fine. Charged 1/2 of the price after the salesman said that we'd pay for each room that was to be done on each install date.

Second install date they wanted the other 1/2 of the amount owed and forgot to bring the hallway carpet. They used two different kinds of batting in one room making the carpet slightly higher (the installers insisted that it was the same just looked different). Also in between the 2 of 3 installs I've tried contacting the salesman Gary ** to hook back up with him to change the type and color for my in-law apartment that is to be the 3rd visit scheduled for December 28, 2018 but he has not tried to contact me. Called the office requesting to meet with Gary but still no callback.

Meanwhile I've been trying to get Empire to schedule the installation of the hallway carpet that they forgot to bring during the 2nd visit and no one can give me answers even asked to talk to a supervisor and wasn't connected to one even though I was on hold waiting too. I was even told by a customer service person that I “could sue the company and get money”... told him “I didn't want to sue I just need my salesman to contact me and my carpet done and who on earth tells a customer to sue instead of looking into solving the issue!”

Very very disappointed, aggravated, embarrassed and worried I'm going to get screwed in the end. I'm considering canceling everything now and going with Home Depot. But I'm worried because of the weird way they have me paying now that the difference in money won't be given back. The last carpet that was installed was quoted as $700 and the check they insisted on having written to be around $1,300. I will not ever use them again. I will promote them. I will contact the Better Business Bureau. And I will make sure that everyone knows what I'm going through and what the outcome is... What a soap opera.

Company Response 12/03/2018:

Dear customer, we take matters like these very seriously and we'd like to follow up with you to learn more. Please email us at customersupport@empire-today.com and include the street address where your consultation took place, thank you.

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Hardwood/Ceramic Install
StarEmpty StarEmpty StarEmpty StarEmpty StarBy -
Rating: 1/51

CHESTER, VIRGINIA -- We've had nothing but issues since the initial delivery of hardwood. We are doing a whole house remodel and the laying of the flooring is an integral part of the process as nothing else can occur into the flooring goes in. We are repeat customers and decided to use empire again to ensure an exact match of the wood. Well, imagine our surprise when the first delivery came with the wrong color wood for the steps. In this install we are doing the steps, mud room, kitchen, morning room, pantry and powder room $9600 (over priced as it is).

In addition, we wanted to have the floors looked at that was already laid in the dining room due to buckling due to floors not being properly acclimated. Those floors were installed 2012 and we still have no resolution to that issue. Due to the wrong color wood being delivered we had an additional 7 day delay which pushed back our cabinet install. No problem… today the installers arrived approx. at 10:15 or a little after. They leave at 6pm approx. with only laying down the ceramic in the powder room and the stairs incomplete and nothing else done. Why? Their tool broke but didn't say anything.

They didn't call their supervisor, didn't go purchase another with all the hardware stores I have in my area. What they did do was drink soda, use my electricity to charge their phones, chit chat instead of work. I had an expectation that this job was going to be completed today. I had my cabinet installed schedule for 8/15. Now that has to be delayed until who knows when. I have appliances schedule to be delivered, furniture that has to be delivered and other things that need to be happen and nothing can move until these floors are done.

I have no confidence in the installers that were here so I need a total new crew and not only do I expect but I demand a credit for time, aggravation and the incompetence shown by the employees thus far due to the aggravation and time wasted. My husband works nights and now has to stay up again for this day of install that should have been completed. The installer tells him someone took the extra tools off the truck. Is that our business? You come to a job prepare at all times for all occasions. We are spending a lot of money and you should ensure you have the equipment you need.

The installer kept saying he needed to get back to Va Beach, they wanted to get home before it got dark. Unacceptable. I have two kids at home with no kitchen longer than anticipated, longer than needed! I want another crew out at my residence to finish this job and to finish it with excellence! The same way I work I want them to work. Anything else is not going to work. I need resolution. 8/15 time is of the essence. I have emailed customer service, spoke to manager. I need help and new crew out tomorrow. Empire has my money but I don't have an installed floor!

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Communication, or Lack Thereof
StarEmpty StarEmpty StarEmpty StarEmpty StarBy -
Rating: 1/51

LAS VEGAS, NEVADA -- Absolute worst experience ever!!! After being quoted a window the installers would be here, I waited over a hour for the flooring to arrive. Common courtesy to call clients and let them know what going on would have been nice. After the install, I discovered that there was a bubble in the flooring and called to have the floor fixed. Not only did they not show up to do the job, on the day of the scheduling, I was unable to reach anyone at the office. Do not use this company, or if you do, make sure to check the installation! I have been waiting now for over a week to get this issue resolved & the problem taken care of. Word to the wise, once the check clears, don't expect to be their top priority!

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Waste of Time!
StarEmpty StarEmpty StarEmpty StarEmpty StarBy -
Rating: 1/51

MANAHAWKIN, NEW JERSEY -- ABSOLUTELY AWFUL! I was supposed to have my bathroom floors replaced on Friday so we pulled out our toilets and I got a phone call Friday morning saying they'd be there in the morning. As of 12:40pm I called because they weren't here yet and when the customer service representative called the installer they said they'd like to reschedule because they got a bigger job. I said I didn't want to reschedule because I had my toilets pulled out and had been waiting around all day. A installation manager, Shane, finally called me back at 4:45pm to apologize and reschedule. He promised we'd be first thing Saturday morning, which I was led to believe was 8am.

At 9:20am when no yet to arrive at my house I called the service center and was told the installers were still loading the truck and would be there in 2 hours. So the 1st appointment is at 11am! The only consolation I was offered for all of this was $65. So 1.5 days waiting without toilets with a 2 year old and oh and yesterday was my birthday. Thanks Empire for ruining my birthday and wasting my time. I'm sorry my job is a small job, but I'm still a customer, but you can sure believe that I won't be again!

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Worst Company I Have Ever Done Business With
StarEmpty StarEmpty StarEmpty StarEmpty StarBy -
Rating: 1/51

SOUTH SALEM, NEW YORK -- DO NOT BUY FROM THESE PEOPLE. First off, they canceled my estimate twice the last minute. When scheduling the appointment for the third time I asked if they would guarantee the appointment considering I'd switched my schedule around and waited for them only to cancel 2 hours into the time they were supposed to be at my home. The lady told me they could not guarantee the appointment because they were "very busy". All I can do is laugh at that statement, literally makes zero sense. Finally, a very nice gentleman actually showed up to the third apt. and I completed the purchase. Install day is a 12-hour window so I had to take the day off work - they also give no phone call to let me know when they'd arrive, just a knock on my door.

Install day 2 men show up one who speaks absolutely ZERO English and another limited to none. I paid to have my furniture moved in my contract-- the men call their boss and he explains to me that my furniture is heavy and need to go to Home Depot and get slides to move it. They also explain they did not bring enough carpet and can only complete one room today even though they are hired and paid to do the stairs as well.

The men then went to "home deport" and never came back. I called and they picked up and hung up on me... I then called the company and they told me that the workers drove home which was 2 hours away and would not be coming back. They would now like me to reschedule and that's the "best they can do for me". DO NOT USE THESE PEOPLE. THEY ARE A SAD EXCUSE FOR A BUSINESS.

Company Response 12/10/2018:

Ashley, we sincerely apologize for your experience and assure you that your concerns are important to us. We'll be in touch with you shortly to learn more.

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Poor Customer Service and Wrong Product Installed 08/11/2018
StarEmpty StarEmpty StarEmpty StarEmpty StarBy -
Rating: 1/51

BALTIMORE, MARYLAND -- As I have never been in this particular store, I have unfortunately done business with this company. My husband and I were easy sales about 3 years ago, as everything in our home was white and not a good mix with kids and dogs! We picked out of new floors even opted for the better carpet and have never wished we could go back in time more!!! We felt completely misled by our sales representative as nothing went the way he prepared us for. We had multiple installation problems, installers coming late or not at all for repairs and even one installer who showed up and just simply said he didn't want to do the job so he didn't.

I will say after several phone calls and appointments we finally got the carpet and vinyl floors we were completely happy with! BUT, sadly it did not last. About a year half later the gaping of the poorly installed floors got too much for me to bear and an daily used threshold came off. We called and they did send some installers out to fix that and a couple other issues. BUT, sadly that did not last. About a year later the gaping came back and the same threshold was no longer attached. They had someone come out to inspect our complaints and we got approved for a reinstall. We picked our product and agreed on real painted white wood quarter rounds. We thought everything was straightforward.

Early this month the installers came out, on time, and started working. I checked their work pretty closely given my past experiences and one installer even told me I was "difficult to work for" which really kinda floored me (no pun intended) and I kinda stepped back not wanting any of frustrations taken out on his work. After they leave it looked good and the quarter rounds were white but didn't look like painted wood. My suspicion were confirmed when my 3 year found a scrap piece (of quarter round) and asked me what it was... compressed material with basically a white sticker around it!

I called complained and it took more than one attempt/message to get Charles the customer service manager out of the Baltimore area not to call me back but actually answer his phone. We started communicating and after a couple phone calls we sit a date last to fix those quarter rounds that day comes, I have my schedule cleared, I have my garage set up with a window ac unit running and fan for my dogs, I have activities for my two kids, we wait the time period and beyond and no one comes and no one shows up.

I'm upset. I call into the call center to complain. (Still from that date on I have not heard back from Charles or anyone else out of the Baltimore office that I have left messages with.) Through the call center I set up a new appointment for the next day. Same scenario, I was like alright. I'll keep the same game plan. We were waiting, schedule clear, home activities planned, dog cool spot set up... and NO CAME AND AGAIN NO CANCELLATION CALL! I called the call center again and they said emails will be sent out and should hear from corporate.

I never heard from corporate... I call Baltimore again haven't heard back. I call the call center again and was promised that everyone involved was included in the email and everyone in the corporate office she and someone should get back to in 24 hours but it was after hours. I am still waiting. I now feel like I have wasted my money and I know I have wasted my VALUABLE TIME!

Company Response 07/30/2018:

Jenn,
we take matters like these very seriously and we'd like to follow up with you. Please email your concerns and contact information to customersupport@empire-today.com for further assistance, thank you.

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Very Unprofessional Company
StarEmpty StarEmpty StarEmpty StarEmpty StarBy -
Rating: 1/51

VIRGINIA -- I contacted Empire Flooring to install new carpet upstairs in my master bedroom, hallway, and stairs. This was the worst mistake EVER. The initial visit with the salesman Ed was fine, but after that it was downhill from there. We set an install date, but was never given a time until that day. This was never told to us that the install times are between 8am and 6 pm. I would have informed the salesman that morning is the time I want. This way the installers can get in and out in a decent time. I called the morning of my appointment to see if I could get a time as I would not want an appointment late in the afternoon.

I explained to the gentleman that I didn't want a late appointment. He placed me on hold and called the installers. He returned to the line and informed me they would be to me between 1-2. The installers arrived at 1:45 with no phone call prior to showing up. The installer (Maro) asked me what floors were we replacing. I showed him each area that was to be replaced. However, upon entering the master bedroom, he looked at me and said he didn't know if they could move the furniture out.

I asked him were they not told there was furniture to move. He said no, but it was listed on the paperwork just not in detail. He stated he would have to call his boss. He sent a text to his boss after taking pictures of the furniture pieces. He received a call from his boss a few minutes later. Maro asked his boss did he see the pictures he sent. I could hear Maro being asked can they move the furniture. He kept saying I guess, I don't know. They were on the phone negotiating a price for Maro and his partner to get paid to move the furniture out of the room. This was so unprofessional!!! We were already told the price for replacing carpet included removing the furniture.

Needless to say, after going back and forth, the furniture was moved out. I did help a little by taping the glass and supplying tools to use. I didn't mind at all. I was even going to give the two gentleman money out of my pocket for moving the pieces because they were big furniture items.

However, I changed my mind once they started acting pure money hungry and would not do and work until they were instructed since the representative on the phone could not process the check electronically correctly. I got on the phone and asked the representative for Empire's routing number and account number so I could transfer the funds. She informed me that Empire doesn't have a routing number.

I informed her this didn't make sense for a business not to have a routing number and they cash checks. She then stated I'm sure they have one, but we don't have that information in our office. I informed her again, this doesn't make any sense at all. While I was on the phone trying to get this resolved, the other gentleman had went back outside and brought the old carpet back in and put it back in my bedroom after he had ripped it out. UNPROFESSIONAL again!

I called the salesman that was originally out and informed him what was going on. He informed me that this was an issue on their end and they should still be working. I informed the salesman they are no longer working. He informed me he would make a call and call me back.

While waiting for a return call, the installer informed me that it is too late for them to start. I asked him why when it is only 3:30 and they would not be finished with the installation anyways. He repeated the same to me. I then informed him if they didn't start today, there was no need to return. I took the day off of work and I was not going to take another day off for them. I received a call back from the salesman who I informed him of what the installer just told me.

I advised the installer and the salesman, if I knew all of this was going to happen, I would have never called them. He apologized to me for this issue and informed me the floors would get installed today and he was not sure what their problem was. He asked me had anyone called me back. I informed him no. He then asked had anyone called the installers. I asked him to hold while I asked them. I went in the room and asked them if anyone had called them. They both shook their heads no.

I informed the salesman of this information and I informed him they were not working just sitting in the room. I also informed him that my husband has now gone to the bank to get a cashier's check. He asked to speak to them. I handed my phone to the Maro who seemed to be in charge and speak better English, but he really didn't want to speak with him and kept asking me who was on the phone.

I informed him this was Ed from Empire. He balled up his face and kept saying I don't know him several times. He finally took the phone and after a long conversation, they got back to work. I was so ticked off by now! Mind you, the account we use, we use daily for all of our business transactions as well as personal transactions. NEVER had an issue with a business being able to not process a check from us. NEVER.

Just a few weeks prior, we wrote out several checks to another business for window replacements. No issue at all. Empire says they accept checks, but in actuality, they want either a money order, cash, or a credit or debit card. If this is the case, then they need to stop lying to consumers and remove the check option from their list of payment options. I prefer to use checks for business transactions to avoid giving out my credit or debit card. There is too much hacking going on.

I kept checking on the work progress, as I didn't want the workers in my home late at night. When the master bedroom was done, I started the clean up process to help them speed up and get out of my home. I piled the extra carpet and paper in a big pile. I vacuumed the entire room and made my way to the hallway once he was finished with the seeming. While cleaning the hallway, I noticed that one of the gentleman used by restroom. If they would have asked me, I would not have said no, but I would have directed them of which one to use. It would not have been my upstairs bathroom.

I do think you are suppose to ask any homeowner if you can use their facilities. Not just take it upon yourself to do so. The other installer was finishing the stairs while cleanup was being done upstairs by me and the other installer Maro. Once all the trash was removed, Maro helped complete the work on the stairs.

Once all this was done, they began place the furniture back into place. I oversaw this as they only had to place two pieces back in the room instead of all the pieces that were removed. This was all done and by now it was 8:30 pm and I was tired and ready for them to leave. I understand fully why homeowners do a lot of projects (DIY) themselves and choose to do other work after they have moved out of the home. This is EXACTLY where I am at based off of this experience! Companies take your money and then want to treat you like crap.

I would not recommend Empire Flooring to anyone at all and I would NEVER use them again. I noticed the next day during another round of cleanup, that the installer placed some of the trash in my bathroom trashcan and the seam in two of the bedrooms is not very well done. I had to use a heavy toolbox to sit over the door seem for a few days to see if it would lay the seem down more. I am so disappointed with the ENTIRE process from Empire!

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