Empire Today / overpriced and condescending
EMPIRE IS A JOKE!
I read about all of the negative publicity before I had the Empire salesman come out to our home, but I wanted to see for myself that they were truly a rip-off company. Based on the salesman they sent to our home, they have no interest in keeping a positive image of their company. He was condescending, unfriendly, and to put it simply, he was a used car salesman. At one point he said the cost per square foot would be $14 -- this was for laminate flooring! When we expressed our concern about the high price, he said he needed to run the numbers again. When he "ran the numbers again" he came back with a price of $9/square foot. Again -- USED CAR SALESMAN. $9/square foot is still outrageous.
We ended up hiring local flooring installer who was friendly, experienced, answered all of our questions in a non-condescending manner, and he did a beautiful job of installing the floor. On top of that, he referred us to a specialty flooring store where we could buy quality flooring at a discounted price. For just under 500 square feet we paid $1700 for labor and materials. Empire wanted us to pay $6000 for the same job -- until they lowered their price to a "bargain" cost of $4500.
DO NOT do business with Empire. Empire doesn't care about getting repeat customers -- they are only looking for one-time customers. My advice is to hire locally, as we did. In general, local installers have their reputation on the line. Local installers rely on word of mouth advertising and good references to maintain their business -- NOT commercials with catchy jingles that you see every time you turn on the TV.
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