Kitchen Renovation & Kraftmaid cabinets

re: Thomas Andrade, Encore Cabinetry, Inc. and Matteo Family Kitchens -- suppliers of Kraftmaid Cabinetry
Be forewarned.
Tom seems like a great guy on the telephone. But he will not return phone calls once he has your money. I placed an order with him for $20,639 worth of Kraftmaid kitchen cabinets; this excludes handles or pulls which are additional. Everything arrived in wonderful shape and nothing was missing; however, I had ordered a 15" wall cabinet with glass shelves and they sent me 12" glass shelves, which are useless. Tom promised to send me the correct glass shelves but he never did.
I have been trying for five months to order some additional items that are needed to complete my renovation, but he will not provide a quote on those items. It comes to about $2500 in product. Apparently that's not a hefty enough order for him to be bothered. I called and told him I would be posting this "negative press" if he didn't call back. He called back but then never followed up with a price quote and an order form. I first contacted him in August asking for the privilege to buy more product from him. He says to fax him the order items, which I did at least eight or ten times, but he never replies. He sent me an email in October telling me he would reply in a week or two, and I never heard from him again, despite several phone calls (you must leave messages because he never answers either his personal cell phone or the office phone) and at least five or six duplicate faxes. His email account has been shut down for the last month, so he apparently doesn't pay his bills. On some days when I called his cell phone numbers they weren't working either.
Why is it so difficult for a business owner to reply to someone who wants nothing more than to order the rest of the products needed to complete my project?
What he doesn't tell you directly when you order is that there are no pre-drilled holes for the hinges or door knobs or pulls. He does mention that the doors are packed separately, but he tells you this is done to cut down on damage. The truth is that by not installing the doors, Kraftmaid charges him less, and therein lies your savings: YOU will have to do what Lowe's and other sellers would normally pay Kraftmaid to do. We purchased 49 cabinets, so this was no small endeavor.
Oh, and those 49 cabinets and 150 doors and drawers arrived with absolutely no instructions. Then you find out that Tom doesn't answer phone calls! We managed to install everything without too much trouble until it came to the corner cabinets and lazy susans. My husband had to go to Lowe's to look at their floor displays to figure out how to install the two doors on all the corner cabinets: turns out you have to cut a 1x4" slot in the wood frame in order to mount the hinge brackets.
I should explain that I was a very organized shopper. I provided him a complete illustration of the rooms, a list from Home Depot of every item number and their quoted price, and my own to-scale drawings. He did nothing but quote me his prices and accept my check. I saved about 30% dealing with him but I can't say if it's been worth it, knowing what I've been through and how much wasted time and energy I've spent trying to get this project finished. So it's been 7 months now, everything's been installed, it looks great (we did it all ourselves), but we still don't have the rest of the crown molding we need, or the bathroom vanity, or the closets for the laundry room.
I should mention that I had been extremely polite and friendly during all this run-around he's put me though. But today I finally threatened him. I called and left a message telling him I would post this "bad press" letter on the internet if he didn't reply. Obviously, you know what happened.
Oh, and Tom also doesn't sell you the cabinets in his company's name, Encore Cabinetry, Inc.. He sells through a place in New Jersey called Matteo Family Kitchens. Matteo will give you a similar run-around if you call them directly, after having exhausted yourself trying to get through to Tom. They quoted me prices for the missing items I needed that were higher than Lowe's, or about 30% higher than Tom's prices! Then the guy there, Everett, when I mentioned that I'd compared his prices with Lowe's, told me he didn't want to sell to me. I asked him why he hadn't just told me that in the first place instead of adding to the run-around I'd already experienced.
So I have just placed my order with Lowe's and paid about 20% more than Tom and Encore's prices.
Be forewarned. I wouldn't deal with this company again if they offered me 50% off the Lowe's price, and despite the other negative things I've read about Lowes.
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snipped-for-privacy@qis.net wrote:

{rant snipped}
Indulge me while I read between the lines.
You're a newbie who wanted to save some money and didn't understand the factors involved in installing cabinetry.
You acknowledge that other than a few glass shelves the $20K order was perfect.
You enjoy beating a horse long after it is dead. Why else would you continue to attempt to buy from a distributor that was no longer responsive to you? He's moved on - you should, too.
This part is very telling: "I saved about 30% dealing with him but I can't say if it's been worth it, knowing what I've been through and how much wasted time and energy I've spent trying to get this project finished." You saved $10K and are unhappy. Oh the aggravation - my heart bleeds for you.
In future: - if something comes without instructions, it's the manufacturer's fault, not the distributor's - you should contact the manufacturer directly and check their web site as the information is probably all available for download. Going through the distributor would probably be slower than making the call yourself. - don't expect a cut rate distributor to be top notch in service and bend over backwards for you - it doesn't work that way. - complaining about not having your laundry room done has nothing to do with this distributor. If you weren't so obsessed with the distributor you could have saved some of that "wasted time and aggravation" and some of the money savings and had everything in place through another Kraftmaid distributor. The guy is under no obligation to deal with you - particularly if he sees you as a problem customer. - If you have a real problem, unlike this one, bring it up with the BBB, or take the guy to court. Complaining on the internet is pointless. - writing things like this: "His email account has been shut down for the last month, so he apparently doesn't pay his bills." is stupid. It makes you look stupid. It also is an unsubstantiated allegation that could be considered libel.
Use some of the $10K the guy saved you to take your mind off of how he "mistreated" you. I'd rather deal with the idjit that believes the WTC was blown up by controlled demolition than this sort of stuff. It makes me nauseous.
R
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Piling on - Kraftmaid blows anyway, they're not exactly built that well. If you need instructions to hang cabinets, you cannot hang cabinets. 20 grand just for cabinets means you could have afforded to have them installed - ?
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