I had a bad experience with Empire Today. I ordered solid oak Mirage flooring in my living room and dining room. I specified I needed 2 1/4 inch width, to match what I have in the foyer. They gave me a decent price, and we signed a contract.
My flooring was supposed to be installed on a Monday. On Sunday, my husband and I moved our piano into the kitchen, since Empire does not move pianos. I emptied two china cabinets, and moved every lamp, plant, knickknack and picture out of the two rooms. Instead of getting my floors on Monday, the salesman called me and said he had a concern about the base of our stairs, and an installer would have to look at it before they could do the job, and that he would come that day. Tuesday comes around and, so far, nobody came. Wednesday, the installer came late in the day and said the stairs were no problem.
Thursday, the installers arrived with the flooring. I paid the cost in full (something I am not comfortable doing) and they got started. They removed my living room carpet and laid down a few planks. It became obvious very soon that the planks were not the same width as what was in the foyer. They had brought 2 1/2 inch planks. I called Empire. I talked to a representative, who told me that the flooring is not available in that size, and that the sample mistakenly indicated that it was. (And our contract specified that I would get it.) He told me he had a floor that was "a ringer" that was available in that size called Achievia. He said, if the Mirage is a cadillac, the Achievia is a Lexus. He said he would send the salesman out with a sample, and adjust the price accordingly.
The salesman came out with the sample (one plank) and reiterated that, the manufacturer of the Mirage floor had been called, and "They don't make it in that size." I told him that one of the reasons I was comfortable ordering with Empire was that I had researched the Mirage floors and I knew they were a good product. I couldn't find a thing about Achievia. He assured me it would look just as nice, and it had a 25 year warranty. I stupidly agreed to have that product installed.
Friday, the installers arrive with Mohawk flooring (What is Achievia?) They brought in some planks and placed them together. They told me that this product is not as nice as the Mirage, and that, when installed, you would be able to see some space between some of the planks. They wanted to make sure I knew it wasn't as nice before they installed it. I called customer service again. I told them about the discrepency in the name of the product. They assured me it was the same thing. (Then why two names?)
At this point, I should have cancelled the whole job, but I have to plead temporary insanity, due to having a piano in my kitchen, the contents of two china cabinets, and several lamps, plants, knickknacks, pictures, etc. strewn around my house for the better part of a week, and no floor in my living room, ( the installers having removed it before we discovered the mistake.) Plus, it was the beginning of a holiday weekend, and I was expecting guests. (My floor was supposed to be in the prior Monday.) Besides, I had already paid for it. I thought, what choice do I have? They don't make the other one in the size I want. I foolishly let it be installed, naively thinking I was being told the truth. Big mistake.
The installers were very professional and I'm sure the floors look as good as they can. However, there is space between the planks, which is more noticeable than I expected, and the floor is, overall way darker than I expected. This floor isn't a Lexus, it's more of a Ford. Oh well, I thought, too late, what can I do?
Then, on a whim, I called Mirage in Canada and found out that, lo and behold, they DO make the natural solid oak in 2 1/4 inch width. What!!! Why did the company lie to me? What's more I called 10 different suppliers around this area, and they all told me, yes you can get that floor in that size. No problem. When I called customer service to ask why I wasn't dealt with fairly, they assured me that, they hadn't said it wasn't made in that size. Empire just can't get it in that size. (Why not? Everyone else can.)
What's more, that is not true. I was told and I quote, "We called the manufacturer. They don't make it in that size." Now, I'm stuck with a floor that is less than what I wanted, and I feel like I was taken advantage of. Empire tells you they are all about customer service. Don't believe it. They should have been honest with me from the start. I am extremely disappointed. I have four bedrooms and three bathrooms which will all need new flooring in the next few years. I will NOT call Empire again.