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[Resolved] Empire Today Carpet / complete dissatisfaction and unprofessional service

1 United States Review updated:

December 9, 2005 I purchased laminate flooring and carpeting for my 2900 square foot home. I paid $3500.00 cash for the laminate, in advance because Empire Today would not install the flooring without pre-payment and charged the carpeting on an account that they set up for me with your company. I also had to sign for the complete bill for the carpeting of $4618.00 three days before installation was scheduled. The laminate was installed 12/10/05 but the installer was short of material and left the job incomplete, he stated that he would not be back to finish the job, that Empire could send somebody else to do it because it did not pay him enough to come back out. On Tuesday 12/13/05 at 9:15am the carpet installers arrived to install the carpet, the laminate was not complete. As instructed, I had cleaned out all closets and removed all small items; I also moved every piece of furniture I could lift, out of the way. The carpet crew spoke only Spanish until the directed a question to me, we then discovered that the carpet that was sent with them was incorrect. Carlos, the crew leader became angry, he re-measured the areas to be carpeted and called the office to advise them of the mistake. He told me that they would send new carpet; I live 30 miles from the warehouse. He also became angry with me because the laminate was completed first; I explained to him that the salesman had set it up that way, not me. They began to install the upstairs and while they were coming down the steps another crew arrived to finish the laminate, they spoke no English at all. Carlos yelled at them that they were in his way, I called Empire and spoke to Olispia and she began to document what was going on. Carlos had a woman with him working in my house who offered to perform cleaning services, when I asked her if she had a business in Tampa; she stated that she was an illegal. I really did not feel comfortable with these people in my house. By 3:15pm I called Mike Smith at the Tampa warehouse to check on the status of the carpet, he asked me to put Carlos on the phone, Carlos and the woman were gone and the other man did not speak any English. I spoke to Mike until 3:35pm and Carlos re-entered my house, he was angry and yelling at me that I was complaining about him. I tried to explain that I was checking on the carpet he would not listen to me. I called Mike Smith back and asked him to call Carlos and explain what was going on, Carlos would not take his calls. The woman was using all of my cleaning products and supplies without asking. I heard a loud noise and found her using my vacuum sweeper to pick up tacking nails. This crew was at my home from 9am to 7pm, they left old carpet pads and carpeting all over my yard, my contract stated that they were to remove old carpeting, my daughter and I had to clean it all up and drag it to the street. When the new carpet had arrived, Carlos laid it out in the street and cut it there, I have had an ant problem ever since. They were to move furniture as per my contract; they moved a file cabinet to my front porch and left it there. Since they left I have found sharp carpet razor blades all over my house, in my window sills, stuck in the trunks of my trees, etc. Carlos demanded that I sign a statement to the effect that I was satisfied with the job, I asked if that meant that I was happy with the installation, he demanded that I sign whether I was happy or not, by this time I just wanted these people out of my house, I still had to put back all of the furniture, they left without doing so. The carpet installation is horrendous; I called and spoke with John Spinella, operations manager, in Tampa, FL. He came out to the house to examine the job. He agreed with me that the majority of the job needed to be redone, he assured me that he would send his best man out, and I was to call after the Christmas holidays to schedule a time. After the 1st of the year, all of my calls to Mr. Spinella went unanswered; he never returned any of my calls. I spoke with many people from the call center, they added more to the computer documentation of my troubles. Mr. Spinella had also agreed to a discount and money to replace my broken vacuum. Several months later I finally was able to talk to somebody who represented themselves as a supervisor, she stated that she would take $300.00 off and return to redo the carpeting, I said that $300.00 barely covers my vacuum cleaner, I suggested a 20% discount, she stated that she had to speak to somebody else, I said why don’t you just issue me an entire credit in the amount of $4618.00, she stated that she could do that but they would have to come and rip out the carpet. She said that after speaking with her supervisor she would get back to me, she never did. I became sick for several months; I finally began to pursue this again. I spoke with Andrea in Tampa; she assured me that she would correct the problem and make this right. I suggested to her that she issue, in writing, 50% credit and I would pay the bill of $2309.00 and that they would not have to fix the carpet, I would get somebody else to do the job. I could not bear the thought of this company sending anyone else into my home. This was on July 14, 2006; she returned several phone calls to me and stated, that was not an unreasonable request. She promised to call me on Monday 7/17/06 to confirm our arraignments, she never called. I started calling and when I pushed in her extension I received a message that this extension is no longer accepting calls. I went on the internet and found many disturbing customer comments about how customers were treated. They mentioned by name Helen Brown and that she did nothing to help them. I called the number from the internet and spoke to another Mike (he stated that he could not give me his last name), He said that Helen was not handling this, she has left me several messages, and that Andrea is handling the problem and assured me that she would contact me no later than 10am on July 24th. I have not received any calls from her or her office. I am disputing this bill because the entire carpet needs to be redone, big bubbles, falling off the step up, large frays sticking out (burber carpet) and I am afraid to vacuum. The steps were not installed with tack strips on the top and bottom of each stair, even the laminate is coming up but they already collected the cash for that. I cannot get any form of satisfaction from the company, so as a last resort I am disputing this bill; maybe then somebody will call me back and finalize this. Otherwise I do not feel responsible for the substandard job that was performed in my home, not to mention the way I was treated. I trusted that this company would only send professionals and this was not the case.

Sincerely,
Rita E. Wages

This is a copy of a letter i finally had sent to ge money bank to dispute the charges. the only rep from empire who called me was Helen Brown, I was told not to deal with her by Mike (no last name) from Empire headquarters. Because i did not speak to Helen Brown, GE money bank dropped my dispute. this has been going on for a year, I am so tired of dealing with it, but my carpet is still a mess and i still owe empire an inflated amount of money. I have never dealt with a company that just avoided your calls as soon as you spoke with someone to resolve your issues.

  • Resolution statement

    Customer care service did everything in their power to resolve this complaint. All attempts to contact the complainant have failed. Therefore, this complaint has been annulled and must not be considered where image of the company in question and it's services are concerned.

  • Empire Today Customer Care's Response, Jan 12, 2016

    Thank you for bringing your experience to our attention. We've read your review, and we are disappointed in the issues that occurred during your installation experience. We would like to know more about the situation and help make things right, but unfortunately, we cannot locate your account with the information posted here. Please send your contact information to customersupport@empiretoday.com. Thank you. Bill Allivato, National Customer Service Manager

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Comments

  • Al
      31st of Jan, 2007
    0 Votes

    I am in kind of the same situation, I was charged a large sum of money for my basement to be installed. I only called empire because I thought they were professionals and I run a daycare in my home and I needed immediate installation. The people who came out to my home were not professionals at all. My carpet was also laid with some bubbles and along the base board the carpet was not tack down correctly. I had a gut feeling not to go with them because when I ask about the 50% there was none in so many words. TO MUCH MONEY-NON PROFESSIONAL CONTRACTORS- UNPROFESSIONAL WORK. Please make sure any job you receive from a contractor is referred(word of mouth) no matter how big the companies name.

  • Em
      12th of Feb, 2007
    0 Votes

    Thank you for bringing this to our attention. Total customer satisfaction is important to us here at Empire Today. We take customer feedback very seriously and we are always striving to improve the customer’s experience. We have reviewed your posting and have tried to contact you in regards to your complaint. If you can either give us a call at 888-588-2300 and ask to speak to one of our Consumer Affair Agents, we will be more than happy to assist you in your area of needs. Or give us a number so that we can speak to with you in regards to bringing this complaint to a satisfactory level with you and your family. We are in the office from 9:30 am to 5:30 pm CST.

  • Ja
      23rd of Mar, 2007
    0 Votes

    An estimator from Empire today just left my home. I am glad i didnt sign anywhere on any dotted line, what a bunch of jokers these people are. I have 550sq ft of area i want installed, she would not give me a price per sqft... "its a package price" well the ending estimate was $11,200!!! Thats 20 bucks a sq ft!!! nobody in town gets that price! not even for real hardwood!

    Also when the estimator was asking me about budget i was telling her i had friends in the business and she immediately jumped my ### asking if i had friends in the business why did i call them, well i called Empire for immediate installation. She was a

    Anyways it comes down to this, Empire sucks, i can just go to home depot and get a better job done for around 2500 bucks. Just as good product with nicer people and an itemized bill. Anyways thanks for the reviews on them!

  • Ka
      5th of Apr, 2007
    0 Votes

    Empire Today Sucks!

    I called to have someone come out and give me an estimate for carpeting in a new basement bedroom. The only reason I called them is due to their commercials stating they can install the next day.

    The guy Steve they sent out to measure was very Rude! He kicked our toy poodle, because the dog smelled his shoe. It was very unprofessional. He only had a few samples in his back seat of his car. I expected them to come in a van or something with a big selection. When he asked what kind of carpet I wanted, and I wasnt sure, he had a fit in my home! High pressure. I felt very uncomfortable with this guy in my home. He kept complaining that he drove 60 miles to get to our home, then five minutes later he says her drove 30 miles. He was a creep!

    Also Empires price was double our local carpet store. It was all a lesser quality carpet. Like I said the only reason I called them for an estimate was due to the next day installation. I would rather wait the week for the local carpet store.

    Never call Empire Today. They are creeps!

  • Da
      21st of May, 2007
    0 Votes

    My master bedroom closet is still unfinished and we cant get anybody from Empire out either...we too had razor blades left everywhere, our carpet was laid out in the street (it was raining) so the non-english speaking crew could cut it. The carpet is falling off of the stairs and we are PISSED! When we initially were given the quote for carpet it was too expensive so they told us that they would take $1500.00 off, so we proceeded with the job... we are now stuck paying for the whole quoted amount because nobody put it in writing that they gave us a discount. Very Dishonest Company and nobody there knows anything!. BUYERS BEWARE!!!

  • Bo
      13th of Sep, 2007
    0 Votes

    I also have a complaint to make. I just called the customer service and they were very unprofessional. I asked whether the crew will move my piano and how many crew will come to change for a 500 sq feet area. I got transfer and both times I couldn't get an answer but was encouraged to schedule an appointment. After I view the compliants on the internet, I am hesitate to have them to do my floor.

  • St
      6th of Oct, 2007
    +1 Votes

    Having been a former sales person for Empire today, here are a few facts. 1.) The sales people are sub contractors and are NOT employees of empire 2.) The people that do the work are sub contractors and are NOT employees of empire. 3.) 80 % of the jobs I sold resulted in broken promises, shoddy workmenship, significant delays in installation, very frustrated and upset customers. I sold their home improvement products windows and siding. The few actual employees that do work within any given state to oversee the subcontractors do not care about the customers and I've actually heard them suggest to customers that they might be better off cancelling their orders in situtations involving delays in getting over there to do the work. If a dissatisfied customer makes enough noise or goes to the media they might get some satisfaction. There are many who don't. Of those few who are actually employed by Empire and decide to leave out of pure disgust for what goes on in this company they get a payoff to keep their mouths shut.

  • Ji
      18th of Nov, 2007
    0 Votes

    Our Realtor recommended Empire Today Carpet to re carpet our 1800 sq ft town home so we scheduled an in-home sales call. The salesman arrived on time, but immediately I could tell he was not enjoying his job. After taking some measurements he went into his robotic speak about how great his company is. Is was so lackluster and pathetically scripted! He only brought in three sample boards, one of each price point, low medium and high. We chose the medium grade. He then gave us a price of $12,000 after all the discounts and it required we commit today and have it installed tomorrow. We said that was out of the question. He said, and I quote, "what can I do to get your business today?". That is the worst used car salesman line ever. To top that off, he made a call to his manager to see if he could get a special wholesale deal for us. The price immediately dropped to $5700. After asking him to break that down into per square foot cost (he had to ask his manager how to do that!), it seemed like a good deal. Later that day we visited a local retailer who offered to do the same carpet for $4900. We cancelled Empire and went with the local guys. He bottom line is, if you want to invite a sleazy used car (pet) salesman into your home call Empire. Their come-on is next day install and financing deals. Their business practices are not honest nor forthright. I would recommend to all to stay away.

  • Dy
      29th of Feb, 2008
    0 Votes

    I'm 21 years old and I live in Charlotte, North Carolina. My father (and a partner) owns a retail carpet store and warehouse in the South Charlotte area called Empire Carpet and Blinds, and I have been working with them for a few years now. They have been open for since 1995. About a year or so ago, we heard about Empire today coming to do business in Charlotte. They sent our company a letter claiming that they had the rights to the "Empire" name and would take legal actions if we didn't change our name. My father and his partner didn't budge and said they knew there were no rights to that name. After that, they stopped bothering them. Anyway, since coming to Charlotte I have heard nothing but bad things about them. We go into L. Fishman & Sons to get flooring supplies and on a board they have business cards for carpet companies so sub-contractors can get work - and on the Empire Today card somebody wrote "THESE GUYS WILL SCREW A CARPET INSTALLER" with a black marker. We have gone into houses that have had work done by them and I have heard nothing but complaints about their salesman and their subs. In my honest opinion I don't understand why somebody would call a number, have a salesman come to your house from God knows where, then have subcontractors that are one and done. They come to your house, do crappy work, and they're done with it. You have a problem with your carpet - they aren't coming out to fix it. As soon as you've paid them they are out of your life and will make excuses just to ease your mind. I have heard about their scams from many dissatisfied customers. I am in no way trying to help our business, but why would you want work done from a company that doesn't have a showroom or wearhouse? If there was a problem with flooring that we put in, we have to go fix it. Our reputation means very much. Big companies such as Empire just flat out don't care, they are a milti-million dollar company that won't be hurt by complaints. We have had people call our salesman and ask for a reason why they're flooring is as bad as it is and they have to explain that we aren't THAT Empire. At first we thought a big comany with that big of a name may have people calling us because they have mistaken our company for theirs, but at times it hurts us because people have not been satisfied with the work that has been done by Empire Today, and the complaints in the Charlotte area from Emipre Today fall onto us. I am not here to complain about them, I am here to inform.

  • Mj
      23rd of Mar, 2008
    -1 Votes

    I agree with all of the above negative reviews of Empire Today. This company should not be in business. They have a very rude customer service that has no idea what they are doing. I am employed by a Fortune 500 company and if we ran our customer service the way this business does we would be OUT OF BUSINESS!

    We had an installation scheduled for Saturday between 8-6. Which I think is ridiculous. I had a feeling that this would not happen.
    Surprise, surprise the installation team never showed up.
    After numerous calls/being kept on hold with the customer service line NOTHING was resolved.
    The two employees we spoke with were RUDE. (I have their names but will not list on the internet).
    The first time I called I was placed on hold for 20 minutes then hung up on. The second time they did not want to help us out and basically in so many words said that if the team did not show up we were out of luck until Monday.

    I work from home and had to take apart my office in order for them to do the work. And they never showed up!!! We have filed a complaint with the General Manager (left a message) who knows if we will receive a call back.
    I should have read the reviews on line before ordering the work. I though that a business that advertises the way that they do would be more professional. Guess not!

    We will be canceling our contract with them first thing on Monday morning.

    Beware of these jerks. THEY ARE HORRIBLE. And a poor excuse for a business.

    Sincerely,
    Marina B

  • Sa
      21st of May, 2008
    0 Votes

    I am looking to install laminate wood on 450 sq. feet of my home by next weekend. After reading the reviews, I will not be doing business with Empire. Thanks for the heads up.

  • Li
      2nd of Jul, 2008
    0 Votes

    Thanks for the heads up. I was ready to call empire today to order laminatede flooring and my home done over in carpet but NO WAY will i do it now. Thanks again.

  • Ph
      7th of Jul, 2008
    0 Votes

    I WISH I WOULD HAVE READ ALL THIS SOONER. I HAVE HAD NOTHING BUT PROBLEMS ALREADY AND THEY HAVEN'T EVEN GOT TO MY HOUSE YET.

  • Do
      26th of Jul, 2008
    0 Votes

    Thanks for the heads up. I was thinking about scheduling a rep. to visit my home, but after reading these reviews and others, I will surely stay away from Empire Today.

  • Bi
      4th of Aug, 2008
    0 Votes

    Everything that former salesman above Steve Hilliard said is true. I was also a sales person for Empire. Listen to what is being said. Do not buy from this company !!! You'll get nothing but stress over the bad decision you made and sub par work. And once they've finished installing the crap they call carpet...Good luck getting help to get your problems resolved.

    And those commercials ! Save 50 %. Save 50 % of what ? What are they basing that number on ? Find an honest local carpet company.

  • Re
      21st of Aug, 2008
    0 Votes

    Last year I had Empire Today come in and give me an estimate. I had asked for both CARPET samples and WOOD flooring samples to be brought. The sales person only brought wood. She then told us this outrageous price and I flat out said NO before my husband could speak. She then called her "boss" and came back with a cheaper price. She tired to get us to sign a contract right then and there...I told her NO and that we needed to discuss it.

    I never did call them back to schedule an appointment. I just had a bad feeling about the whole experience. Within the past few weeks my husband and I have been talking about calling them back and having the flooring installed...I decided to come here first and find out if everyone has been satisfied or unhappy with the service. After reading all of this I'm going to call a local installer.

    Thanks everyone for sharing your stories and I'm truely sorry for all the trouble you have endured.

  • Sh
      23rd of Aug, 2008
    0 Votes

    I actually just scheduled an online appointment. I am going to cancel that right now. I am so glad for all of your reviews ...thanks for keeping me from making a huge mistake!!

  • Jo
      27th of Aug, 2008
    0 Votes

    Ha! I just now called to cancel my appointment. The Customer Service rep didn't even skip a beat when I said I read some reviews and wanted to cancel. She simply said "Ok, I will let the rep know not to come to the appointment." These people know what's up. Great review!

  • An
      31st of Aug, 2008
    0 Votes

    Wow after reading all these comments, I ma glad I got out when I did, I just recently resigned from Empire Today, I worked in one of the call centers and handled cancellations. Well let me tell you all straight from the source. Empire Today will overcharge you, ALOT and also about 90% of the time the sales rep that goes to your home will measure your rooms for sq. footage, and then add 20% to the total square footage. Then they will for sure give you a silly high price, and if you dont agree with the price they will just knock off about 15% and if you still dont agree, they will just keep knocking that price down. It will make you wonder just how much is the product worth. If you agree with the rep. and you sign the paper, he will give you some line like in order to keep this price for you, it must be installed within 3 days, or something along those lines. Ok so lets say you have your installation all set up for a week from today, and you went to another store and found the same product or better for a lesser price, then you would have called me in the cancellations department. This is where the fun begins. You call in and go through the automated system, then get put on hold, for probably 10 minutes, then customer service answers, then they have to transfer you to cancellations, well we will give you the run around, and try to convince you in any way to stay with Empire, we can offer lower prices and you name it we will try to do it for ya. It made me sick working there, they basically tell us to lie to the customers to make them happy. Stay Away from Empire Today. You will always be able to find a better deal elsewhere. If you have a serous problem and want to speak to a supervisor, forget about it, you wont get one on the phone, oh the supervisor will be there, but refuse to talk to you the customer.
    Well sorry everyone for rambling on and on, but I could go on for hours about how messed up this company is, just be warned you will have a headache from beginning to end.

  • Ja
      13th of Sep, 2008
    0 Votes

    I wish I had looked into compaints against EMPIRE today before we contracted with them!

    We had a carpet installed badly (loose ends, holes, glue, tacks etc) and complained. The next day they sent someone to fix it, which they couldn't do. They ripped up the carpet and re-installed, again badly. This time they put tack strips on the riser of the stairs. Three people visiting my home got cut (one badly) in the two days following.
    We complained again and they came out to replace the stairs. Two weeks later the rug has flattened, frayed and disintergrate in spots!

    It has been a nightmare. I have contacted the Atty General. By the way, we were given the name of Helen Brown too. She did nothing.

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