Empire Today – Do They Make The Grade?

I got to experience Empire today and found their flooring pricing was way over priced and tends to be made up on the spot by the sales rep. They always have a 50% sale and have for years.

This is my rundown of my experience with Empire Today.  While my experience with them happened years ago, I keep this post updated because many people reach out to me about their deceptive flooring pricing and they should be held accountable.

Empire today logo

Since writing this post, we have received hundreds of emails over the years with similar stories about Empire Today. They focus on marketing more than service and product quality. They basically outsource everything and don’t care what happens on your project unless you can get a good service rep. I would recommend you go with someone else for flooring. Local companies often do a much better job at a better price.

Key Takeaways from My Empire Today Experience

My firsthand experience happened years ago, but we still get emails about people being scammed by them and their crazy flooring pricing being all over the place. We even got hassled by a customer rep pretending to be a reader in the comments. Crazy! I would suggest getting flooring quotes from local companies instead.

My wife and I decided to put new carpet down on our first floor.  Over the years, it has been destroyed by our two dogs.  It is beyond cleaning at this point.  Luckily for us, not our whole downstairs is carpeted.  We have wood floors in our kitchen, so that doesn’t have to be redone.  The new carpet will be good since we plan on selling our house at the beginning of next year.  Our upstairs carpet is still in good shape and could look great with a nice cleaning.  I will save that for another day though.

As with any project, I look at my DIY options along with get some recommendations from people that I trust.  I looked at the DIY option for putting in my own carpet, but I don’t really have the time or the necessary tools.  Though I try to do a project once on my own, I know my limitations.  I won’t take on something that I can complete to the highest quality.  So, with the DIY option out, I was on the hunt for a company that could provide me with the service I needed.

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I talked with quite a few people that have recently had carpet installed in their home.  I got all of their reviews and opinions.  With the reviews and opinions, I found that Empire Today did a good job with most of the people that I spoke with.  You might know Empire Today, as it is one of the largest flooring companies in the US.  They do thousands of install jobs everyday.  I have seen great reviews, so I decided to try them out.

carpet install with empire today logo on top

How to Hire Empire Today

Grade: A

Empire Today works by setting up an appointment for a salesperson to come to your house.  They will measure the square footage and then give you flooring options.  You can go to their website at www.empiretoday.com and setup a free consultation.  Many times they can do it the same day depending on when you set it up.  This is where they are super efficient.  You can also call their toll-free number at 1-800-588-2300.

I setup an appointment the day before and the salesperson was punctual.  One thing I noticed is that Empire Today hires out their sales organization to 3rd party providers.  This would explain why they can have quick turnarounds on their consultation appointments.  Many other companies do this, so I wasn’t worried.

Empire Salesman Experience

Grade: F

You know how this experience is. There is something about a salesperson.  I have never really met one that I trusted and that is for a good reason.  While there might be some really good salespeople, there are ones that just give the trade a bad name.  Unfortunately, the salesman that my wife and I got was one of those…. 🙁

The salesman that came to our house was very quick on his measurements and his explanations.  We told him that we weren’t looking for anything fancy for the house.  We just needed something similar to what we had in order to look nice for when the house goes on the market.  Should have been easy enough, right?

After the measurements, he went to get his samples.  He came back with a few, but not many.  He sat us down and started to work out some math.  Now, Empire Today was having a 50% off everything sale.  This means that it was 50% off the product, materials, and installation.  That means 50% everything.  That makes the math easy!

empire today flooring pricing sale
The sales banner that is always on their site. Always has a 50/50/50 sale.

Knowing this information, the salesman allowed us to pick out the color and carpet style that we liked.  This is where the process went south, very south!  After he did his math, he told me his quote.  Eye-popping is an understatement.

Empire Flooring Pricing

Grade: F

You never really know what the quote is going to be with Empire. The sales people work on commission and are a third party. They can make up any number they want and since they have these “deals” all of the time, it can make it look more like a deal than it should be. While some indicate they have transparent pricing, I have not seen this in their flooring pricing. It seems to be completely up to the sales rep to push a price they want.

My $4,500 Quote

Yes, the quote for the carpet was $4,500 for just 610 square feet!  Now, I might not be a carpet installer, but this seemed really high.  But “luckily” for us, with the 50% sale, we could get the carpet for only $2,250!  Sweet….

Since I didn’t know what the true cost of installing carpet was in our area, I asked a simple question to the man.  What is the cancellation policy?  This is a great question to ask by the way.  Empire Today has a 3 day no-questions asked policy.  This was good enough for me.

The way Empire Today gets you is that they require that you sign the contract that day.  That is how you get their sale.  Now, this usually isn’t a problem for me if I know what I am receiving.  Unfortunately, I had a feeling that this man was blowing smoke.

In order to keep the deal, I asked him to just put down a 10% deposit.  Now, if I would tell you that I wanted to put down a 10% deposit on a $2,250 order, what would that amount be?

$225, right?

Well, my second clue that this person was not up to snuff as that he couldn’t do the math.  He sat and thought about it and then had to pull out a calculator.  This was when my lovely wife just spoke up and said “it’s $225!“.  The salesman’s response was just as stupid as his math, “Hold on, I am trying to calculate the deposit.“.  I just had to laugh.  People like this make me angry.

Either way, I put some skin in the game, just to make sure that it wasn’t actually a good deal.  The deposit was nothing and I put it on my credit card to get some points!  The salesman left promptly after we signed the paperwork.

Now, it was my turn to go to work.

The Revelation

I am not an un-informed consumer. I know how to do research and find out if you are trying to swindle me.  I always like to give a company one chance to make an impression.  It is up to them on how they choose to do so.  I jumped on my laptop and started looking around.  I even went to Home Depot and Lowes to compare the price that I received from Empire Today from their product and service.

It only took me about an hour to realize that this salesperson was just padding the hell out of his pockets.  I found comparable carpet products at both Home Depot and Lowes that were much cheaper.  By my calculations, I could have paid about $1,700 for the carpet, install materials, and installation.

With this information, I realized that Empire Today was not providing me with any 50% off sale.  They were just increasing their prices by double and then cutting it in half.  They were still higher than the average in our area.  Tisk, Tisk!

Armed with my easy findings, I decided to call Empire Today’s customer service.

The Customer Service Experience

Grade: B

I called the number and went though about two number punches in order to find my department.  It was quite easy. I was only on hold for about 30 seconds.  That is a much nicer experience than dealing with Time Warner Cable.  The lady rep that I got on the phone was extremely polite.  That is a great way to start off a call.  I proceeded to let her know about my experience with their sales rep.  I definitely let her know of my position on the whole experience and she was generally apologetic.

One of the things that she told me, which irritated me a bit, was when she told me that they aren’t responsible for the sales reps.  Since they hire a third party company, they don’t take responsibility of their actions.  Oh, NO NO NO!

Let me tell you one thing, Empire Today.  No matter where you get your salespeople, you are using them as the face of your company.  They are the first people that we see as consumers.  They are the ones that are supposed to build your brand.  I don’t give a crap if you don’t actually hire the reps, but you hired the company that does.  It IS your responsibility!

When someone tells you they don’t take responsibility for their reps, just cancel the order. Don’t keep going like I did. They aren’t worth it.

I was on the phone with this rep for close to 45 minutes.  The reason why it took so long as that she was working with upper management to give me a price that I would accept.  Once I get burned, I am much harder to please, so I made her work a little harder.  By the time, I got finished with the call, I didn’t cancel the installation.  The reason is that the customer service lady brought down the price to what it would cost me for just the carpet at Home Depot or Lowes.  That was acceptable to me.

This customer service agent did exactly what she was supposed to do.  She worked to fix my issues and did it politely.  I even asked for her manager and made a call to him to talk about how well she did.  Good customer service is rare, so I will do what I can to make sure the agent’s manager know.

The Installation

Grade: N/A

We scheduled the installation day for a week out because we were going to be out of town.  Another aspect of Empire Today’s business is that they have third party installers to do the work.  It is the same as their salespeople.  They just have a huge network of installers that are in your area.  This makes it much cheaper for them.

The installer came early, which was great.  They were very nice and polite.  The main installer asked if I wanted to review the materials before he brought it all in. Of Course!

He brought me to the back of the van and there it was….Utter Disappointment!

Are you f’ing kidding me?  So, the carpet that was brought was as thick as Astro Turf.  This was definitely not what we had picked out.  It was so hard and the color wasn’t even right.  I was pissed.

I realize now that when I was on the phone with the customer service rep, she probably changed the order to a cheaper carpet to get the price down, but just didn’t tell me. So that’s how they adjust their flooring pricing. They just give you crappier product at an inflated price, but it seems cheaper to you. Nice job Empire!

I didn’t get angry at the installer, because it was not his fault.  He was very polite and even told me that he didn’t think it was the right carpet.  He did a little digging and found that the salesperson changed the tags on the carpet in order to match the invoice, but it wasn’t the right carpet.  Luckily, the installer had the same product line in the van, but in a different color.  We compared and that was the confirmation that I needed.

I told the installer to wait and I called Empire Today again.  I got a different rep and this man was an ass.  He was very rude. I told him that we needed to cancel the order immediately. I gave him my reasons and he tried to counter them saying that it was what I ordered. I assured him that it was not and it was an inferior and unacceptable product. I wouldn’t even put that crap in a rental property.

After 20 minutes of back and forth, I finally told him that if he didn’t cancel the order, then I would be calling them in a few days when the carpet started ripping up (it was already coming out in handfuls when you put your fingers through it) and they would have to do a full install of new carpet. I told him to cut the loss now and move on.  He obliged and that was that.

I walked back to the installer and told him that I was done and the order was canceled.  He was honest and told me he wouldn’t even install that in his house.  I really liked that installer.  He was honest with me, even though he wouldn’t be paid for the job.  It just shows that there are still people around that will do an honest days work.

Overall Experience

Grade: D+

My experience with Empire Today was not a good one.  Yes, I gave them a D+ because they had one good customer service rep (not the cancellation rep) and their website is super easy to use.  I wish I could have graded the install, but since it didn’t happen, I can’t.

After going back and talking with the people that used Empire Today, they told me that their salespeople were really good.  I think this will happen when you have a company that uses a third party organization for its sales staff.

From my experience, I DO NOT recommend Empire Today.  I think that they have practices that are not ideal and they leave the pricing up to the individual salesperson.  This leaves the system open for manipulation.

Here is another example of Empire’s flooring pricing on Reddit. Just crazy quotes and price gouging!

I have to call into question the good reviews you see that they have. With so many contacting us over the years about similar issues, I’m skeptical about their 4.4+ star ratings you see. Funny thing is those numbers haven’t changed in nearly 10 years….strange.

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  1. Great honest review, Grayson. I’ve got a guy I’ve used several times for carpet installs because he’s so easy to work with, but I never feel like I quite get what I’ve asked for. What is it about contractors these days? They seem to be so hit or miss. When you find one you trust and who does a good job, hang on to them!

    1. Thank you. I always to make sure that I am honest. If you provide me a good service, I will tell people. If you don’t, then I will let others know. There will always be a downfall of using contractors when selling services, but as the company that hires them, Empire Today is responsible for them.

  2. I had heard they were more expensive than comparable options, and this just proved it. It’s also downright criminal that the salesman changed the tags and tried to give you carpet you didn’t even pick out! Imagine if you weren’t home when they did the installation and didn’t get a chance to see the carpet beforehand. You’d be in court trying to get your money back (plus the cost of tearing it back out). We need new flooring in our house and I definitely won’t even consider Empire Today after reading this.

    1. I can tell you that they are the more expensive option. They do this in order to provide the “sale”. When you start high and then give everyone a sale price, then you become more comparable. I don’t see this as a way to do business, but they are still doing it each and everyday. I made it a point to be home for the install. I already had a bad taste in my mouth and this just solidified just reasoning.

  3. Customer Support says:

    Grayson, we were disappointed to read about your experience. We regret that the sales appointment did not meet your expectations and the confusion that occurred in delivering the incorrect product. We can assure you that we take any customer concerns very seriously, and your experience is not in line with the level of service we strive to provide to our customers. We would like to discuss the situation with you in more detail, and we will be following up with you shortly. You can also contact us at 888-588-2315 x3555 or customersupport@empiretoday.com. Thank you. Angelica Snell, Resolution Team Manager

    1. Hello Angelica,

      Thank you for getting in touch with me. I am the type of person that gives a company one chance to make an impression. It is up to the company to do what they advertise. I shouldn’t have to second guess the people you send to service my needs. Technically, I already broke my own rule since I allowed the installation to proceed after learning of the salesman’s deception. Given this fact, I have no desire to work with your company in the present or the future. You burned the bridge, and I am not going to take my time to rebuild it. Not worth it when there are many other reputable companies that will do what is expected of them the first time.

      1. Levi @ Wealthnote.com says:

        Ouch…as a business owner I know hearing something like this has got to hurt.

        1. It should hurt, but Empire is big enough that I am just a little fish in their big pond. They will get another customer to replace me with no issues.

    2. Anjelica, I have had a horrible experience with empire and have left multiple messages with not only you, but many other customer service reps. I have not received a call back still. Just want everyone to know that she only posted that to try to make the company look like they care, but getting someone on the phone that can accomplish anything is next to impossible. I have been no showed 3 times by this company. That’s right, had three confirmed appts, and no one showed up. Only trying to work with them because they have the best match to our floors. I was almost begging for someone to come out to my house to buy something from them. They’ve lost my business, I went to Home Depot and Lowe’s. They have better quality products, better prices and better customer service. Empire is garbage, move on to anyone else.

      1. David Simmons says:

        So True. Dealing with Empire is impossible. They installed a defective product, ripped it up and then tried to install the exact same defective product. When I said no, they tried to upsell me on another product. Unbelievable. Now, i’m stuck with sub-floor while they don’t return calls because they’re too busy swindling other customers. Absolutely criminal.

  4. Good thorough review. They seem pretty expensive and a cheeky (but probably quite standard) trick from the salesperson.

    1. After finally seeing how they work, I can say that they are not price competitive.

  5. Money Beagle says:

    The last time I had carpet installed it was from a local place, and we got to talking about Empire and some of the other places like that. He made a good point that to get that large and to do the level of advertising both required substantial budgets (for the overhead and the marketing) and that had to be passed along to the customer somehow. So, it kind of makes sense that they’re going to be so much higher in price. I would’ve been angry at the same points you were and probably to the same degree. The higher pricing wouldn’t have bothered me as much, because as you found out that’s the customer’s responsibility to make sure they look around and get the deal that’s right for them. But, I would have hit the roof had I found out that the salesperson switched the tags.

    You wonder how many people have no clue. Again, they have skin in the game and should always look, but I bet they get away with this. I would probably file a BBB complaint on that element.

    1. I am with you there. They only get so big because they can get people to pay these prices. There was a reason why I just put down a very little deposit. I wanted to put some skin in the game, but knew I needed some time to check around. I always make sure to research before or after a sale. I also make sure to understand the contract and it’s cancellation policy.

      I wouldn’t file a complaint with the BBB. I hate the BBB with a passion. They can be easy bought. When I ran a consumer business, all you had to do was buy a membership and you were almost guaranteed a A+ rating. I never had to do anything when dealing with complaints. It is a joke!

      1. So you know the BBB is a monthly charge company…as in companies have to pay a monthly charge to start with them and start to get the A or higher ranking…I was even told by the rep that I could remove any bad reviews if I got any buy spending *X* amount of dollars…. The BBB is a sham just as much as many other places because it is a for profit company.

        1. Yes, I even wrote about it here. I ran a few businesses were the BBB rating was something people wanted to see, but it’s a joke. That organization is a waste of time and money.

  6. Wow, talk about getting the runaround. It’s a good thing you were so persistent. Many people would throw up and their hands and just allow themselves to be taken advantage of. And I can’t even believe they would have the gall to say that they don’t have any control over their salespeople. If that’s truly their attitude they deserve to be out of business.

    1. I never throw up my hands and give in. That is not how I was brought up and not how I roll. I was a little taken aback when they told me that as well. Kind of a joke.

  7. Grayson, THANK YOU for sharing this experience. We’ll need new flooring in our house within the next year or so, and I always saw those Empire Today commercials and thought about giving them a call. NO MORE, thanks to you. SO glad you stuck to your guns and didn’t take any crap from them too.

    1. Glad I could help Laurie. I definitely wouldn’t recommend them to anyone.

  8. We’ve had multiple good experiences at Home Depot and Lowes in the purchase and installation of carpet for our rental properties. The price this company quoted you was outrageous for the amount of square footage you had. And I’m like you, salesmen make me very skeptical. I hate listening to a bad one.

    1. Thanks for letting me know Brian. I have heard good things about Home Depot.

      I agree the price was way over the top. I thought that when I first heard it. While I had no real price range in my mind, I am not stupid.

  9. Tara @ Streets Ahead Living says:

    Wow, thanks for posting this! I always thought they were fishy since they’re always having “sales”. Who can afford to always have as sale unless you’re upping your prices over MSRP to do so? Plus, I’d feel better using a local store for installation since at least I’d have someone to go up to and complain.

    Glad you got your money back… if you have a pleasant experience with someone else I hope you can post that review. 🙂

    1. True. Empire Today does use local installation companies to do the work. You still have to work through them to get anything fixed. I am just glad I got out before the install started.

      Whenever I get carpet installed, I will be sure to let everyone know.

  10. Levi @ Wealthnote.com says:

    You gave them a pretty good score for all that they put you through (and you didn’t even end up with new carpet!) It’s amazing how some companies will try to manipulate you with price schemes like that. Goes to show that doing your homework is really important.

    I’m surprised that they didn’t offer to make it right after showing up with the wrong carpet. If it were my company I would have done all I could to keep you as a customer.

    1. I have them a C, which I wouldn’t consider good. I don’t shop C rated companies. I have them a good score because they do have good customer service. They took care of the issues and tried to resolve it, but the sales person was the one who brought down the experience. If he didn’t act like an ass, then maybe we would have had new carpet with no problems.

  11. I am so glad I came across this post. We are considering new flooring for our entire home, about 2000 square feet. I’m happy I’ve saved myself some aggregation…hopefully.

    1. I would try a different company. I have talked with quite a few about Empire and they have a similar experience. That said, it really depends on the sales person you get.

  12. Thank you for this review. I am in a 2.5 year long battle with Empire Today and am ready to go to court. In 2013 had an engineered hardwood floor installed (Acacia). Within 9 months it was falling apart. Empire replaced it in 2014 with a hardwood floor (Acacia) and again fell apart in under a year. They agreed after 4 months of fighting this battle to replace it again (3 floors in 2 years!) I had an install set up a month in advance for 3 days this week and they cancelled the day of install. I should have known better as they cancelled two board replacement appointments same day prior to deciding on replacing the whole floor. Can you say LIVID! I have been professional, understanding, and flexibile with this company. I have now been burned 3 times and the bridge is unrepairable. It saddens me about the BBB and how true your statement is. They are a total JOKE! Unhappy consumer in Minnesota

    1. I’m so sorry to hear about this Melissa. They are not a good company to work with. Their products are junk and the way they handle sales and installation just means they don’t have to take the blame. They farm out all of the work to other companies. I hope you get it all fixed and keep fighting the good fight!

  13. Paula LJG says:

    Thank you so much! This is the thorough type of review I was looking for. My spidey senses were tingling whenever I started to look into using Empire Today. Just one of those “seems too good to be true” deals. We just bought a home and need to replace hideous carpeting upstairs, but with everything else that needs doing, spending thousands on carpeting seems a bit too much.

    Anyway thank you again for the review of your experience with them. Yes, one small review may not seem like a big deal, but with the power of the internet, and the old-fashioned word of mouth, it could cause a big enough ripple.

    1. You’re most welcome. I was not happy with the company and how they treated people or their pricing tactics. They know they are selling crap products at inflated prices. Best of luck finding someone to help you. Check around local!

  14. Rebecca R Burger says:

    Thank you for this. You just saved me a lot of money and perhaps a headache as well. I appreciate your honest review.

    1. You’re most welcome. I wouldn’t use that company for anything. Their marketing is deceptive and they just blame it on their independent contractor sales people.

  15. Hi there,
    I used to be a sales rep for Empire Today, i read your review and just wanna shed a little light on a few topics you talked about that you dont understand. Id like to start of by saying i did sales for the company for a year and a half, i did installation ( not with Empire ) for 16 years, i am CFI certified ( certified flooring installer ) and i been in the flooring business for most of my life.

    SO!… As far as the pricing goes, they do start at MSRP which was your $4500 initial price. This is how they start all pricing reguardless of what sale they are running. All discount are made from that point. The reason you are givin MSRP is so that you can see the amount discounted. No one ever pays retail ( hopefully ). I will tell you this, that you will get 2 different prices from 2 different sales reps and i dont like that about how this company does business. The sales reps have the ability to discount to a certain point on their own, after a certain point it requires a managers approval. typically you can get about 60% off the MSRP on carpet with negotiation. But please understand at 60% off you are well under most competition at that point. No one wants to sell it that cheap, but they would rather get something vs. nothing.

    As far as the installers being sub contractors goes. This is standard EVERYWHERE. There is no such thing as an employee installer for the most part except union workers. But you wont see union on residential jobs almost ever.

    From my experience about 90% of the jobs i sold went well and people would recommend me and Empire today, but the 10% that didnt go well, seemed to go very bad.

    I think Empire is an ok option for flooring. You best bet will be a mom and pop shop with a good reputation. Dealing with corporate anything sucks. With Empire negotiation is everything especially since the sales reps can discount at their own leisure. So if you use Empire Today your best discount will come when a manager is called by the sales rep to get a lower price. Also if you do sign the contract you can cancel the job all the way up to the last day before the install and still get 100% of your deposit back. The reason why is because when you do business with Empire Today they already own all the product, so the deposit doesn’t go towards ordering it, so cancelling doesn’t put them in a different financial spot either way. The 3 day right of recision is a Federal law, but they go above and beyond that law. Which is a good thing. Calling and threatening to cancel will usually get you a little more of a discount as well.

    So you all know i had Empire put 2 different types of floors in my own house and they did great. Also several of my friends are contractors and had Empire do some work for them and there was no issues. Unfortunately they dont all go smooth. Good luck!!

    1. Thanks for the information, but you being in the flooring industry for so long doesn’t mean that any of this is correct. The good news is I have met and know many people who do flooring for a living. While Empire starts at MSRP, how do you even have that number? Manufacturers of flooring don’t install, so they would never give an MSRP for the whole project. It’s not their business. They will give you a price for the flooring, but coming up with 50% everything is not running a true MSRP. Second, After dealing with Empire, I’ve met hundreds of people who have been burned by this company. When you allow sales people to create a pricing structure on their own, you’re going to have problems.

      The best part is the carpet I was able to get was leap and bounds better than the crap Empire brought to my house. After we sold, we got another company to put more carpet in our house with one of the best pads on the market. This company gave us a quote (no MSRP) for much less than the crap price Empire gave us. This was some of the best carpet and arguably the best pad you can buy. It was $700 less. We compared prices and no one came close to what Empire tried to charge us for some of the worst carpet I’ve seen. Even the installer who came to our house sub’d by Empire wouldn’t put that crap in his house.

      So, in your assertion that once you get 60% off, most competition would not be able to meet that, I beg to differ. I found more companies than I can count that would beat that “discounted” price by hundreds of dollars.

      I will agree about the sub-contractors. This is how it works in the industry. I didn’t have a problem with that when it happened. The installer was the nicest person in the entire process. Remind you, this was three years ago, but people still email me to this day asking for help because Empire gave them some crappy price. I’ve given an number of recommendations around my area for better carpet sales people and installers. I still to this day wouldn’t recommend Empire. If you want junk carpet for a high price, then yes, but if you want good carpet at a reasonable price, it wouldn’t be from Empire.

  16. Julia T. Jordan says:

    Amazing, many thanks with regard to publishing this particular! I usually believed these were fishy because they’re usually getting “sales”. Who are able to pay for in order to also have because purchase unless of course you’re boosting your costs more than MSRP to do this? In addition, I’d really feel much better utilizing a nearby shop with regard to set up because a minimum of I’d possess somebody to increase in order to as well as grumble. rally helpful..thanks a lot.and I got some more ideas for help.?

  17. Over 10 years with Empire and i can tell you EVERYTHING J said is spot on. Empire does offer some entry level carpets but pricing should be competetive, if it isnt, the sales rep isnt doing their job. It is hard to weed out the reps who look to take advantage, it happens. I can also assure you it would be ALMOST impossible for a rep to “switch tags” on carpet. The installer, i would gamble is full of crap. Saving face on the spot. I have never worked for a company that did more for their customers to be satisfied. I will agree that they should eliminate all bottom barrel carpets and do a better job hiring good reps who find solutions to a floor need instead of just selling what the customer asks for. And ive never even been irresponsible enough to find my self in $50,000.00 debt. Go figure.

    1. Well, there might be some bias there since you work for them. I’ve talked to at least 1,500 people who’ve had terrible experiences with Empire and they match mine closely. While there might be some good reps (I’m sure there are), the bad ones always overshadow them.

      If you’re going to have the gall to call me out for being irresponsible for getting into debt, then you better know what the hell you’re talking about first. I built a company on my own in college doing over $1 million in annual sales as a single person. I used credit cards to help fund the business, but then it started to affect my health, so I couldn’t continue the company without killing myself. That’s where the majority of my debt came from. Having said that, I paid it all off (irresponsible, I know) and now am self-employed earning six figures a year in my basement (finished and paid with cash). I’ll take my life any day of the week!

  18. I was thinking about calling them for carpet but after reading this not a chance. Thank you!

  19. We’re in a huge time crunch to get carpet laid before we list our house on the market (by the end of next week), and Lowes and Home Depot can’t get us installed in time for realtor pictures, so I was looking at Empire since they promise fast install. Not going to bother though, because I loathe high pressure sales people and since we’re selling our house I just need something that looks decent but is cheap! Will keep looking, thanks for the honest review!

  20. Dan Tather says:

    Empire doesn’t use third party installers or third party sales reps. They are all 1099 subcontractors. Don’t speak unless you know the facts. They do not outsource any installs. The customer had a bad rep. Period. End of discussion. Always request a veteran sales rep. Reps cannot change tags on carpet. They do not have access to the warehouse. The warehouse may have mislabeled the carpet. If a customer has a problem, then a good sales rep is always reachable. Errors happen. Good reps fix them. Also, do not compare a diy store who does use subcontractors for their installs. No customer service, no service division either. Empire also price matches. They have great buying power. From experience, those customers who complain the most are the cheapest and always turn out to be the most problematic. $3/ft carpet is basically garbage. Customers never except the fact that they themselves are culprit of certain situations. We get what we pay for.

    1. Haha, nice try, but a 1099 contractor is a third party. They are not employees and contractors typically work for themselves or another organization. A subcontractor is a third-party, go check the tax code. As you just said, they use 1099 subcontractors, that is outsourcing. Unless the are employees of the organization, which by default of a 1099 status, they are not, they are outsourced. I contacted the sales rep with the problem and he didn’t care to assist.

      Considering I run a business and I 1099 with many organizations, I know this point very well. I’m not an employee of those organizations and I get paid by multiple companies under my own business name. Seriously, go learn business types.

      Do you read what you type?

      “Empire doesn’t use third party installers or third party sales reps. They are all 1099 subcontractors.”


      “Also, do not compare a diy store who does use subcontractors for their installs”

      Basically, you just said Empire uses all 1099 subcontractors and then told me not to use a DIY store who uses subcontractors. You just in a round-about way said don’t use Empire.

      I asked the installer if we worked for empire and he said no. He told me he was a subcontractor who subs out for multiple companies. That means he’s not an employee of Empire.

      I called their customer service about the new carpet price and they wouldn’t come close to touching that. We got top of the line carpet with waterproof padding and install for less than Empire could get me with crappy carpet.

      Glad you got that I was a cheap customer just from this post. You must have done your homework on me. Got me pegged.

      Good thing I know how to read and don’t go around in a circle contradicting myself.

  21. Empire services millions. Everyone knows they’re a giant. This bell guy is like the kid who gets a trophy for participating. Goes in debt, and blogs about it. Just like the obese person who gains 100 lbs. then wants credit from society for losing it. Shouldn’t have opened your mouth. Literally. Advice….you’re so misinformed, so speculative, fall short of knowing facts about Empires infrastructure and basically sound like a little child who was coddled too much by mommy. Joke!

    1. Haha,this “bell” guy is the owner of the blog and I’ve never received a trophy for participation. I’m not a kid either. I’m a grown man, who owns a business built on customer service.

      The one problem with your statement and probably your dear colleague sitting next to you is you’re messing with someone who’s not a dumb ass. I’m educated, know how to source product, know when a salesman is an idiot, and know how business structures work. Just because you service millions doesn’t mean anything. That just means you have a big advertising budget. That’s called business. Doesn’t mean you’re a good company with good service. They are not correlated.

      Your IP address is directed right toward the Empire Today headquarters and so was the last comment about how I didn’t know what I was talking about. Why don’t you just come out and say you work for Empire instead of trying to pretend like you know more than anyone else. Don’t be an idiot and remember the internet is a powerful place and many of us know how to use it better than some (evident you just jumped on your work computer at the office and decided to comment). Tell your boss and the others at Empire to come talk to me like a business should. Don’t send uneducated morons to try and comment about how I’m some kid who was coddled by his mother too much. I got into debt building a business (you work for one, I own one) and I got out of debt.

      Congrats on coming here and being the “dumb ass” of the day Marc T G. I’ll wait for the next comment from Empire’s corporate IP.

  22. Bob Parker says:

    Couple of things:
    As a former Empire sales rep, I can tell you that it’s ALWAYS 50% off … but you have to tell the rep you want 50% off “the six.” There are multiple commission levels based on how much a rep gouges … I mean, charges … the customer. The lowest is 4% and that is paid on any price charged lower than the 6% commission level. And they can easily go 50% off their lowest price and sometimes even 55% … you could’ve paid as little as $1200 for that carpet. Laminate is the same way but Hardwood is a little more pricey and they can usually only go 40% off the lowest level there.

    Empire is stuck in the 70’s with their sales practices and cannot seem to get away from the Glenn Garry Glenn Ross style. Always Be Closing. One Visit, One Close. HIGH (as in maximum) pressure — this sale won’t last! “We have excess inventory and can lower the price!” This lower price is only good for TODAY!

    Don’t blame the salespeople because it’s how they’re trained.But do know that if you have to think it over, it counts against the saleperson. The quality and quantity of leads they receive each day is based on how high they sell a flooring job and their closing ratio.

    Here’s something else: had you told the sales person you needed to think about it, you’d have received a phone call from them a day or two later, offering you a better price. That STILL isn’t the lowest price they’ll accept. Always tell them a STUPID low price is what you want to pay and see what they say. They’ll lower it.

    Also, in what they call “virtual” markets (think of satellite markets without a warehouse), sales people have to chase their commission checks. The company stalls, claims they mailed them (no direct deposit for sales contractors), claims they lose them (?), and will force you to attend a sales meeting just to get your check. It’s the most manipulative, backwards thinking, regressive company I ever worked for.

    I learned a decent amount about flooring, but I learned a lot more about how to NOT manage a sales force and how to NOT treat customers.

    Having worked there, I would NEVER use them to install my own flooring … or anything else. A better option is to use a guy who owns a franchise (like Carpet One) in your area or resort to Yelp or Home Advisor. Then ask if you can call their references … and actually call and inspect their work. Hey, it’s your money. Spend it wisely and know that the markup on flooring is insanely high. I also worked for a different flooring company many years ago and you’d have a coronary if you knew what the company paid.

    1. This is very enlightening Bob and what I figured the inner workings were. I should have worked down the price on my own, but when the price is so inflated that you can adjust the price by 50%, that’s a scam. They get companies in trouble for that mess all of the time.

      I wouldn’t use them for any flooring at any time. I’ve found much better deals in local places by just checking around.

  23. These stupid box stores are exactly whats killing all the real pros off. I had to chuckle as a small flooring store operator..ive been told by managers at these hellholes exactly what they do. It was no accident what happened to you. Thats how the salesmen are trained end of story. Ive heard it 1st hand. When a box store starts talking free, you know theyre full of crap plus at best they sell 2nd grade materials thats cheaply produced . Everything about lowes, empire, home depot, carpet one is fly by night. People need to wake up or sooner than later these idiots will be your only option..stay local with people that have 40 yrs experience instead of letting chainsnatchers in your house to lie about what theyre selling and then further letting sub par installers in to screw up your new flooring. Nobody w experience that is actually good at floor install will work at those places for peanuts. your common sense should kick in before you have a mess you get to pay double on to fix! Let us just do it right the 1st time in other words bc im tired of getting calls after these idiots make their messes.

    1. Yeah, our local installer was awesome and laughed about Empire. I shake my head anytime I see their commercials.

  24. patrick stanley says:

    Empire is a rip off, we had a rep. show up and measured and then when it came to samples she did’t have ant with her!! WHAT? no samples! no way, well sj=he showed us some pics and we picked on out and i said ok thank you i will get back to you, she was stunned and said i had to sign today or i don’t get the 50% off deal. Again said thank you for your time then she says well you have 3 days to decide if you want it or not and I didn’t not give her no money down. We called a local company went to see them picked out a way better grade of carpet and it was still cheaper than empires half off sale wink wink. Also the lady from empire measured and told us it was 625 sq. feet, the local guy told use it was 510sq. feet ??? i don’t don’t get it 115 sq. ft. more ?? either she’s bad at math and measuring or she was a total rip off. i will never nor will I ever recommend empire to anyone. We had a front room installed by empire 2 years ago the install crew was a joke. the man in charge had horrible body odor and he fell asleep 2 time on our floor while the other guys worked. I felt sorry for the other guys so i ordered pizza and i said don’t wake him up we will eat without him out on the back patio and we did..lol so please make sure you get a second estimate and you will find out you will get it cheaper and a better grade then emipres half off sale wink wink ……..

    1. Sounds like the same experiences that many have with them. Unfortunately, they do so much in marketing that people fall for their deceptive marketing and junk product.

      1. Not Empire says:

        I get that you are upset with your experience, but you are giving incorrect information. Empire Today Product is not junk. If you want to help people you need to cut this nonscence. The only thing you are doing is hurting salse people that already don’t make much money. You had one bad sales person and now everybody is going to be judged on that. Your article is going to hurt a lot of honest working people.
        If you want to talk about this (I am an individual, not Empire Today) reach out to me. Give me a chance to defend good people who are just trying to earn a living.

        1. Seems to actually be a common trend with Empire. Their product is junk, sorry to say it, but when I’ve spoken to real professionals in the industry that install this stuff, the laugh when they hear the name Empire. I wasn’t even using them to put stuff in, just came up in conversation. You have to take pause when other professionals laugh when a company is named and they aren’t even bidding for a job. I’ve been contacted by hundreds of people with similar experiences since putting out this article. Makes it sound more like a common trend, then me hurting honest sales people.

          You don’t have to defend anyone. If you’re a good sales person, then you sell. If you’re selling junk product, then move onto a different job where you can stand behind the product. Simple.

          1. Not Empire says:

            You have no idea about what you are talking about. Empire Today is inside 500,000 homes a year and on 75% of the United States, so with being in more homes you will get more complaints. What you are peddling is incorrect information.
            I am an independent sales person, I get paid only if the product is installed. To get paid you have to sign to say you are happy with the install. If I sell you something that is junk, and it gets installed, and you don’t like the junk, you are not going to sign, and I am not going to get paid.
            Empire Today has great relationships with companies like Shaw and Mohawk. Shaw own R2X solution that prevents stains from penetrating the carpet. Mohawk has the smart strand, the protection is built into the fibre. These two companies own the science behind the technology, the competition does no sell this product.
            You are hurting the small business. When I have 10 visits in a row that I drive an hour to, and they just ignore the door, I cannot sell to them. Why do you think they are ignoring the door? They are ignoring the door because they read articles like this. I know they are ignoring the door because I can hear them. They make the appointment, then do a bit of research, and then instead of canceling the close their blinds and curtains and just ignore the door.
            You are giving wrong information, because one bad salesperson upset you, and this is not fair on the rest of us.
            Lets go through some points here:
            1) 50% promotions are on select products only, not 50% of everything Empire carries.
            2) Independent salespeople go through intense training
            3) Customer service does not know how salse people get leeds, and doesn’t know that Empire does take responsibility for these individuals. Do you think the salesperson that visited you has visited anyone else since? NO! Empire will not give people like this leeds.
            4) Empire does stand behind the product like no other company does. If your product does not live up to guarente Empire will pay for the replacement.
            5) The highest price you see is the retail value. The small busineses have to charge this much for the same product. I have seen the estimates.
            6) switching the tags is fraud on part of the salesperson
            7) you have to review and sign for the product that is going to be installed.
            8) Empire Today isn’t successful because of their advertising. If you think this you know nothing about business.
            9) Empire Today leeds don’t pay enough money to the sales rep. To be successful, the sales rep needs self generated business to make real money. They get that business from satisfied customers that recommend them. You get rewarded by having satisfied customers
            10) All installers are contracted. Empire Today are able to keep the installers busy and making money, because of this you would be lucky that quality of installer anywhere else.

            I am a very good sales person, I don’t sell junk. Here’s what I think, I think you peddle what ever crap you can to get activity to your page so you can profit from the advertising. I don’t think care less about the activity as long as you get it. You are wrong if you don’t think you hurt anyone. When I don’t get into peoples’ homes all week long, because my potential customer is reading crap like this, I get to come home and tell my wife I don’t know how I am going to get the money to pay the rent. I haven’t been selling for them for long enough to generate my own business, and so when people don’t visit with me I get hurt bad.December, January, and February are quiet months. I don’t know how I’m going to pay my bills, I don’t know how I’m going to put gas in my car to get to my visit who read your articl and won’t see me, I don’t know how I’m going to pay the rent, and my children have been living on peanut butter and jelly sandwiches for three months. You think I’m going to do something for my wife today? No, I don’t have any money.

            I sell carpets that will look good for 30 years, don’t tell me what I am selling is junk. You are not going to get a product like this at my prices from a mom and pop store, they don’t have the buying power. Yes, go ahead buy from the small business. Let’s talk about asbestos, I go into this guys rental and discover a small father and son business pulled up asbestos flooring then stuck vinyl tile on top. Gues what, nothing will stick to the glue that has encapsulated the asbestos. What do you think I have to tell this guy? I’m sorry, but we can’t install on this, you have to have the appartment abated. If he had the job done correctly by Empire Today it would have save him thousands of dollars. This is what you get from the small business.
            I go into homes when things have gone wrong. Someone paying expensive money on ceramic tile then pays an installer that puts them down so uneven that you can trip over them. How about the hardwood install, this one was terrible. This lady purchassed bamboo hardwood that she had to open the boxes and let acclimate at room temperature for two weeks. The installer got half way through the job, and she had to stop him. She was getting splinters on the wood he put down.
            What you are doing in this article is telling people I am going to sell them junk, and I am going to rip them off. I am very upset with you, and you are don’t want to talk to me. You make the clain I am selling junk, you want to go head to head, then you speak to me. Message me on my email with your phone number so that we can talk directly.
            Yes the small company is laughing at Empire because they think they are good at what they do, the world is full of those people. The good installers are not laughing at anyone, they are just out there doing a good job, and they make more money installing for empire than that struggling business laughing along with you and entertaining this nonscence.
            I you want to talk then lets talk, or continue hiding behind your computer screen.
            But don’t insult me anymore by telling people I sell junk. You know nothing about what you are talking about. I know enough and seen enough to know a lot better than what you do. I would never buy flooring from any other company than Empire Today. I chose to sell for Empire because I only want to sell high quality product.
            You don’t give good advice or you would be willing to listen to both sides of the argument and use fair judgement, which clearly you are not willing to

  25. Thank you for taking the time to post this. I have a carpet installation scheduled for this weekend but I think I will take the loss on my security deposit and cancel my contract. I’ve already had a bad feeling nagging at me after multiple calls and emails with their customer service department. Still no straightforward answer. After being given the run-around, and having a similar experience with my own sales rep, I think I’ll go with a local mom n pop company instead. You may have saved me from even more headaches. Thank you!

  26. Thank you. I am a new widow and have decided to sell “our” home. Carpet is necessary to freshen this place up and I’m so glad I happened across this. I was entertained by some of the responses here. I appreciate the time you took to inform us of the reality that I suspected existed with this “household name”.