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[Resolved] Empire Today, LLC / poor product and customer service!

1 United States Review updated:

In December 2006 I met with an Empire Salesperson to review samples of carpeting during their advertised sale. Based upon our conversation, and review of carpet, I purchased new carpet with expected install the following week. On the scheduled day, Empire arrived and installed carpet on both the upper and lower levels of my home. Following the installation of the carpet and padding, I contacted my sales rep in regard to my concern over the quality of the padding installed and overall carpet difference from what was expected. My sales rep informed me to contact the local office and explain my concern as this was the most effective process. I called Empire and spoke with local office sales manager in regard to the padding installed. After doing so checking, he explained that an error was made and offered either a $500.00 credit, or reinstallation of the correct padding. I elected the reinstallation of padding. I scheduled the reinstallation for very early January 2007.
Again, Empire arrived to reinstall the padding and I was informed by the contractor that he had concerns regarding the ability to properly match up the carpet at the seams during the installation of the correct padding. I attempted to contact my sales rep and the local sales manager, but was unable to reach either one. I informed the contractor to continue with the installation and that I would follow up with Empire if there appeared to be a problem. Following the installation of the new padding, I immediately noticed a “plastic/crunching” noise when walking over the carpet. Initially, I believed this to be caused by the carpet and padding being new, and should allow for a settling in period.

In February 2007, after 4 weeks passed and the noise continued to be coming from the carpet, I placed a phone call to the local sales manager at Empire to inform him of my concern with the carpet, and requested that he please call me back to discuss. As a result of not receiving a call back from the local sales manager, I placed a call to my sales rep explaining the situation once more, and the phone call to the local sales manager not being returned. Near the end of March, as a result of both attempts to contact the sales rep and local sales manager being unsuccessful, I sent a letter to the local sales manager’s attention in regard to the problems with the carpet, which now included the upper level carpet showing signs of wear after only 3 months.

In early April, I received a call from Empire in response to my letter. The representative explained that they would be sending an independent carpet inspector, Inspect Solutions, to review the carpet and I would be contacted once Empire received the report back. 3 weeks later, a representative from Inspect Solutions arrived to review the concerns I had with the carpet, and to verify the noise being heard when walking across the carpet. The inspector confirmed the noise coming from the carpet, as well as the visible wear, and explained that this would be noted in the report.

During the first week in May, I received a letter from Empire along with a copy of the inspectors report. Although the report clearly confirms the noise coming from the carpet padding, the letter states that “no defect was found”, and therefore they are unable to provide any further assistance. I immediately contacted the individual from Empire who sent the letter to me and was informed by another representative that the person I was calling was out of the office. The rep did review my account, including the notes based on the report, and explained that “there is no defect with the carpet and that I could request new padding, but there would be a charge”. I explained to the rep that this was unacceptable and she explained that there was nothing more she could do, but that she would speak to the person I was calling (I was told this person was a supervisor) in the morning and leave a note to have her call me. I asked the representative if she was basically stating that “despite that I ordered new carpeting from Empire, and that Empire installed the new carpet and padding, and I was charged for the new carpet and padding, and that the inspector’s report clearly identifies that a noise is being made from the padding and suggested what needs to be done to possibly fix the issue, Empire views this as my issue and not theirs to solve?” Her response was “not in those exact words, but yes. The rep again stated that she would inform the representative I was originally calling when she returned to the office the next day, and hung up the phone without saying a thing.

I then contacted my credit card company to initiate a dispute of the purchase through them since their dispute policy specifically states “quality of goods or services that you purchased with a credit card and you have tried in good faith to correct the problem with the merchant” as valid dispute.

After not receiving the dispute form I was told I would receive, from the credit card company, in three weeks, I contacted the credit card company to inquiry about it. The representative I spoke with this time explained that it appeared a form had not been sent and that he would be sending one that day. A few days later I finally received the dispute form. I completed the form as instructed, provided copies of requested documents, the inspection report, and a summary of events, and sent the information back via certified mail. After 40 days, I finally received a notice from the credit card company that they researched my dispute, found in favor of Empire, and closed the dispute. The research conducted, as they state, was simply them sending a notice to Empire of my dispute, and Empire saying they installed new padding and the inspection report noting no defects. Essentially, all they did was the same steps I had taken myself originally, and did nothing to represent me or my concerns correctly.

Unfortunately for Empire, this does not settle the dispute by me, and I will continue to pursue all avenues until my concerns are satisfied. I have reviewed many other complaints on the internet and have spoken with other individuals who have experienced poor and unacceptable service and products from Empire. As a result of the significant cost I have paid for the carpet, I will not quietly sit back while Empire brushes me off. It is clearly evident that I was provided cheap and defective padding deliberately by Empire as a result of my electing to have them correct their mistake and not taking an insulting credit amount.

If by chance Empire should be scouring these message boards and posting their standard message of concern and desire to resolve the issue for me, my Work Order # is W107909. However, at this point, please understand that I am more upset now than I was 3 or 4 months ago, and would appreciate you not insulting me with any insignificant remedy.

To anyone else who may be reading this – no situation or sale should ever justify anyone having to endure such poor customer service and treatment, so do yourself a favor and patronize another company.

  • 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, Jun 06, 2016

    Dear Jan12799,
    Thank you for bringing this matter to our attention. We are disappointed to hear about your installation experience and sincerely apologize for the damage done to your home. We take your concerns seriously and will like to follow up with you regarding this issue. Unfortunately, we are unable to verify your account information. Please contact us at customersupport@empiretoday.com for assistance.
    Thank you
    -Empire Customer Support

Se
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Comments

  • Em
      10th of Aug, 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 researching this matter. We have offered to replace the padding at a cost for the customer and we have also offered to give a refund ( deduct the cost of the padding) and the customer have not responded back as of yet. We are awaiting his response before we move further into this claim.

  • Da
      20th of Nov, 2008
    0 Votes

    I was planning to contract with Empire Today to install wood flooring in my DC condo, mainly because I see the commercials and thought Empire seemed a good choice. It's a large condo and the estimated price for the job is between 13-15 thousand. But having read this complaint and many more on the web, I will definitely avoid Empire Today. NOTE TO EMPIRE: You have lost my business. NOTE TO COMMENTER: Hopefully it's a small consolation to you knowing that your posting had an impact on Empire's bottom line. Thank you and good luck.

  • Ka
      12th of Mar, 2009
    0 Votes

    I agree with the other comment. I have just purchased a new townhouse and planned to call Empire to install hardwoods in the basement. After reading about the miserable customer service thsi patron received and others, I have decided to contact other businesses for my flooring needs.

  • Th
      20th of Mar, 2009
    0 Votes

    I was actually just Googling them to go to their store to shop, based on their commercials. I just bought a new home and was thinking of getting laminate throughout. Too bad Empire Today isn't standing behind their product and feels no loyalty to customers...not even enough to take them off hold after getting their money. That opinion is based on this and other reviews. Empire Today, you just lost my business. Thank you to the reviewer for posting the warning.

  • Ro
      28th of Oct, 2009
    0 Votes

    I was just looking at this site to read up on some of the comments because I'm considering Empire on a different level. The one thing I noticed is the large amount of installations performed by these guys and the numerous cities in which they do business. Taking into consideration they have over a million customers over 49 years, I'd have to say that the small number of complaints is not enough to discourage me from continuing my involvement with them. Although it's important to know that customer service is evident, it's also important to factor in the opinion of the masses in addition to the few.

  • Dh
      19th of May, 2010
    0 Votes
    Empire Today - Poor product and customer service
    Empire Today
    San Diego
    California
    United States

    In May 09, an Empire salesman sold my husband and I a product that was the "best thing" in vinyl. He showed us how durable it was, claiming it was water proof, and that it had a seamless quality. Within a few months, there was bubbling that had to be fixed. A couple months later we noticed a few gouges appear, the main seam continually became more noticeable and more bubbling appeared. In Jan 10, many attempts were made to contact Empire. It took several phone calls before someone came to inspect the floors. The repairman called the day prior to confirm the appt for an earlier time and that day. I corrected him and related the appt was set for 4pm the next day. He called late the next morning asking if he could come earlier. I told him no, neither my husband nor I would be there. I reminded him that our appt was for 4pm. He showed up to the house at two, my roommate let him in and he tried to repair the floors, not conduct an inspection like he was supposed to. Several weeks later, an actual inspector came to the house to examine the floor. He said he would try to compensate us the 3, 200 we had already spent and quote us tile instead of replacing the vinyl with more vinyl. The salesman called a couple days later, he said he would give us full compensation but, the tile installation would cost roughly 8, 000, 4, 900 with our compensation included. We got a second opinion from West Coast Flooring; they quoted us 3, 900 for all the same areas plus the fireplace and entry way. I have requested contact once again regarding a possible refund and have not heard back yet.
    Our BBB complaint got us no where, we decided to go straight to the corporate office to file our complaint. The corporate 0ffice made us an offer to replace the vinyl with tile for $500. However, there were only five options none of which we liked. So, we requested a monetary settlement. They offered us 1/4 of the money we originally spent on the floors and a settlement agreement issuing a gag order and that we had to retract our BBB complaint and could not blog or forewarn anyone against the company.
    My family owns a flooring installation business and I am familiar with the proper care and normal wear of a vinyl floor. In my opinion, Empire and their product are not meeting expected standards. We are unhappy with Empire due to the poor quality product sold to us and the terrible customer service. Considering the price difference and better customer service experienced with West Coast Flooring, we are dissatisfied with Empire.

  • Bu
      20th of May, 2010
    0 Votes

    We are currently researching your concerns. We are dedicated to service and satisfaction. A representative from our customer service team will continue to be in contact with you to assist with all your concerns.

  • Ja
      3rd of Jun, 2016
    0 Votes
    Empire Today, LLC - Bad Customer Service
    Empire Today, LLC
    United States

    The salesman stated that they have really good customer service. After the installation of our new flooring in the bathroom, the toilet started to run since it had a leak in it from being moved around the room for the installation, which the company is not liable for according to the contract. Apparently, my husband decided to contact the company to get it fixed and explained to them the situation and everything. Rather than resolving the situation over the phone, the CSR dispatched someone to the house to check out the issue. The paperwork that the representative had stated only toilet issue and to dispatch someone out. I felt like I wasted my time, the installer's time and Empire Today's time in coming out to our house to go over this issue.

    Also, as I was looking at the damage clause in the contract, it states that the company is not liable for any unintentional damages to pretty much the house and the property (it was a huge list of items). I can understand with some things that it is hard to say who should be responsible for that damage. There are other things that would be considered as an unintentional damage, but I believe the company should take more responsibility in it. For example, what if the installer accidentally dropped the toilet while he was moving it into the shower or break the shower door in the process? I understand that he/she was not intentionally trying to damage it, but at the same time, the company should take care of that kind of physical damage to the property in some shape or form. It is pretty obvious that a representative of the company physically damaged something. That damage clause should be reworded somehow. It does not make sense for me as a consumer to be responsible for something that got damaged by an installer that is very obvious that the person broke it, whether it be intentional or not.

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