Crooked Companies Beware: The Customers Strike Back!
Pacesetter Corp. no longer exists. However, some of the people who ran it are still alive and kicking. Please check out our Quality First Home Improvements, Inc Page & MyContractor.com for more information.
We have many complaints about the Pacesetter Corporation, complaints that were amplified immensely by Pacesetter's horrible customer service and deceitful representatives. We found many others with complaints about Pacesetter, although discovery of these complaints did not happen until we were deep in our own Pacesetter nightmare. It's for this reason that we made this site dedicated to voicing complaints and bad experiences with Pacesetter, as well as exposing the truth behind the deceitful practices and horrible service of Pacesetter. Although Pacesetter is now out-of-business, there will always be similar companies out there (see our Quality First Home Improvements, Inc Page & MyContractor.com), and so we will continue to keep this site up to help you spot and avoid them.
First, we must make clear that all complaints and experiences are referring to the Pacesetter Corporation that deals with home improvements, including replacement windows, flooring, siding, blinds, and garage doors. They proclaim to be "America's Leading Home Improvement Company". On the internet, before their website was taken down, this Pacesetter Corp. could have been found at either www.pacesettercorp.com or the alternate url of www.pacesetteronline.com. After that, they could be found at www.home-improvement-remodel.com, though soon after finding that site all references to the Pacesetter name were removed from it. The rest of the site remained intact, called The Home Improvement Corporation), but then eventually it dissappeared as well.
When we were first telemarketed by Pacesetter, we did an internet search to find other peoples experience or problems with the company. Nothing turned up. After having extreme problems of our own with Pacesetter, we did a newsgroup search and uncovered many negative Pacesetter experiences (and no positive ones)! Knowledge of these experiences and problems would have saved us a lot of time, stress, and money, so it is our hope that this knowledge will help others.
blinds normal costing
under $400?! It's true!
prey on the weak and lie
about fees? Find out!
The story behind our Pacesetter nightmare has grown so long that we decided to summarize the entire experience to keep it in perspective. It started in November of 2001 when we were telemarketed by the Pacesetter Corporation. We set up an appointment for Sunday, and yet no one came or called when the day arrived. We were called again, told we would get a discount because of the error, and once again set up an appointment for Sunday. The high-pressure sales pitch, which took forever, sweet-talked us into signing an absurd overpriced contract with 10.9% financing. Of course, we didn't know this at the time as it was all completely new to us.
After some delays, installation began on January 11, a couple weeks after the estimated date on the contract. We were told that they wouldn't be doing the garage door today because it was in Sacramento, just waiting for a truck to bring it down. The installation lasted all day, and when we arrived home that night, we found a huge mess. Dust, drywall chips, and splinters were littered around every window. There were bent nails, a special drill bit, and plastic pieces laying in the carpet. Our coat rack leg had been broken off. A baseboard was removed and not tacked back into place. None of our blinds had been put back. There was a giant Pacesetter advertisement stuck in our front lawn. And we later discovered that the top portion of the bathroom window was obscure glass when it was not supposed to be. We had complaints galore, and intended to voice them the following day when they came back to clean up... but no one came back and no one called.
Then several weeks later we were contacted by Pacesetter asking if we had signed off on the job, and this is when we voiced our complaints. A few days later, our sales representative, Scott, showed up in our driveway as my wife was leaving for work. She set up an appointment to talk with him on Sunday. He listened to our complaints, and told us he'd look into it and call us the next morning. He also gave us a quote on some blinds that we had shown interest in... with discount, it was over $1,000 for 5 blinds! Because he did not call the next morning or the morning after, I called him. All he had was a new excuse that the garage door was delayed because they needed a trainer to install it.
Fed up, I called the Sacramento office to speak with Tim Dravesky, who was out to lunch, but I was promised he'd call when he returned. He did not. The same thing happened the next day, so the third day I would not hang up until I talked with him. After I told him we were canceling the garage door, he said that only vice president Gary Cluck could do that. My request for Gary's direct number was refused, but I was promised he would call, which he did not. But we did get a call from the customer service manager to set up an installation date. Informing him of our cancellation, we volunteered to set up a date for them to finally come clean up, but that was ignored. Days later Scott called to say that we'd get no money for the cancellation because it was given to us for free. Days after that we got a call saying that we would only get $400 for the garage door. This is when we wrote our first letter.
About a week later V.P. Gary Cluck called and offered us $3,800. I said I'd talk it over with my wife, and he verified that a price breakdown would be sent. None was. A week later another call came asking if we signed off on the job, and discovered then that the price breakdown hadn't been mailed yet. When it finally arrived, it was completely wrong. Gary was on vacation, so I spoke with the Assistant General Manager, who proceeded to spout multiple lies. We then received a letter that basically threatened to take our house. This was scary, so we wrote a letter with a compromise, which he accepted. I asked if we'd need to sign another contract, and he said no, so once they completed the terms of the compromise we signed off on the job.
Weeks later we receive our first payment notice, but the $3,800 had not been removed from the balance. After some calls I find out that we now need to sign a mutual release form, a form that would obliterate all of our rights, including our right to complain. So we met with a lawyer to see if he could help us out. Soon afterward we received a fax from Pacesetter saying that if we do not sign the release by June 21, they will not reduce the contract. Later, we received a call from Federal Diversified Services asking if we sent our payment, which was expected on the 6th. After briefly explaining that we were still having problems with Pacesetter, she gave me a person to call in order to postpone our payments. From Friday morning on to Monday afternoon, we left a total of five messages on this person's voice mail.
On Tuesday, June 18, with Pacesetter on the line in a conference call, she left voice mail at our home and my office (I was at lunch). After her message, she did not hang up properly, and Pacesetter's conversation about us was recorded (phonecall.mp3). In short, they accused us of doing this to all companies in order to get free product. Listening to these absurd accusations about us, after how patient and calm we have been with these people, was just so infuriating that I could not return her call at that time and still remain calm. She called the next morning, without Pacesetter, and when I explained the situation to her, she was able to postpone our payments until we got our credit.
Well thank you for taking time to read the short, simplified version of our Pacesetter nightmare. You should now have an idea as to why we feel that Pacesetter sucks. We hope that you will read the full story with all the gory details to really see how these people operate. If you have any comments, questions, or suggestions the please feel free to send us a message. Thanks!