Skip to content

Kitchen Experts of California: the official complaint letter

Update: 6 September 2016
I have had a number of people ask me about Kitchen Experts since I posted this. I honestly am extraordinarily surprised that they are still around.


Q. How did your case turn out?
A. I got most of my money back.

Q. How long did it take to write this letter?
A. A whole day of writing and reading the law. Plus I went down to get a few quotes for the cabinets that KE was trying to install. I decided to be utterly complete in my documentation. I didn’t want to get into a long debate. I wanted the problem solved. I didn’t know which sins were considered the most egregious. Most importantly, I wanted to make it abundantly clear that it was perfectly reasonable to demand a refund. I did NOT want Kitchen Experts to try to “fix” the problems.

Q. What did you do with the letter?
A. I filed it via Fed Ex with Contractor State License Board.

Q. How long did it take after that to get your money back?
A. This is from my memory on the exact timeline. I Fed-Exed it Thursday. I got a call from the CSLB on Monday. I got my refund check on Thursday-ish.

Q. Why do you think it happened so fast? I don’t believe it!
A. I spent the time to do a very, very complete letter. It wasn’t just this letter. It was photos and other supporting documentation. The packet that landed at the CSLB was about 90 pages. I wanted the regulator to take one look and think “this is going to be an easy case to address”. The conversation with the CSLB person was at most 30 minutes long. She just flipped through it and said, “I will give them a call.”

Q. What is the most important thing I should do?

Q. What Next?

  1. Next, document everything!
  2. Boxes that the cabinets came in. Packing slips.
  3. Notes about what you remember and what promises were made.
  4. Look at their website: Are they still making promises about materials that they did not deliver.
  5. When did you make payments? For how much? Look in this letter for the rules about payments
  6. Refer to the California Contractors License Law & Reference Book – 2016 Edition and look for the bits that have you most concerned.

Q. Then what?
A. Set aside the time. Turn off the TV and write a timeline of what happened and when. And just keep on writing.

Q. That sounds like a lot of effort.
A. That is why this letter is online. Use it as an example starting point.

Q. The job based inspection by the city. Kitchen Experts told me that means they did a good job.
A. FALSE. The purpose of the inspection is ONLY to make sure the house is not dangerous to live in. The inspectors are not looking at anything else. Most importantly, it says nothing about Kitchen Experts following the law and delivering what is promised.

Lastly, two points:

  1. rumor has it that many other people have had the same experience with Kitchen Experts. The only way good contractors survive is if bad contractors are stopped. You have to help by following through and getting your money back.
  2. Vote Democrat. I was only successful because we have people in Sacramento who actually want to have government solve problems. Right now only the Democratic Party is making government work.

Contracting State License Board
Sacramento Intake & Mediation Center
P.O. Box 269116
Sacramento, California 95826-9116

Dear Contracting State License Board Investigator,
Our complaint is concerning our kitchen remodeling project at our home

We contracted with:
Kitchen Experts of California
License #960046
7055 Commerce Circle
Pleasanton, CA 94588

on 3 November 2012 to do the interior portion of our kitchen remodel.

This letter was prepared without any legal assistance as such we relied on common English reading of Contractor State Licensing Board legal documents. All quotes and references to the law are from the PDF file available via links on and stored at (California Contractors Law)
This letter has taken a considerable amount of time. As a result, not all the issues have been full articulated.


On November 3, 2012 we visited the Kitchen Experts Of California showroom and spoke with John Gonzalves.

We explained to John that we wished to remodel our kitchen. We wanted a durable long-term kitchen. We had lived in our present residence for nearly 16 years. We had no intention of selling the property and wanted a kitchen that would last for decades.

We contracted with construction company, A&G Construction, to do the required structural and exterior work.

The City issued 2 separate permits:

  • 20 December 2012 for A&G Construction’s work
  • 3 January 2013 for Kitchen Experts work

A&G Construction completed the work needed for Kitchen Experts to begin work in the second week of January.

Payment History

We made the following payments in good faith that Kitchen Experts would deliver a quality kitchen:

  • $1000 Deposit ( 3 November 2012)
  • $15565.20 ( 28 November 2012 ) This second payment was due upon “blueprints” – The “blueprints” consisted of little more than an output of a sales tool that generates simplistic cabinet placement.
  • $15565.20 ( requested payment 24 January 2013; payment made 28 January 2013 ) This third payment was requested by Kitchen Experts upon delivery of the cabinets. Payment was made by Cashiers check.

On 28 November 2012, Kitchen Experts had requested and was receipt of 42.6% of the total contracted amount:

  • 22 days before A & G Construction received their permit on 20 December 2012
  • 35 days before Kitchen Experts’ received their permit on 3 January 2013.

As of 6 March 2013, Kitchen Experts requested and received payment of $32,130.40 (82%) of the total project cost of $38913.00. This significant amount of money was requested and paid prior to cabinets being installed, and granite and flooring being delivered and installed.

Such early advanced payments seems in clear violation of Section 7159.5(a)5 :

Except for a downpayment, the contractor may neither request nor accept payment that exceeds the value of the work performed or material delivered.
Section 7159.5(d)9C states that :
(C) The section of the contract reserved for the progress payments shall include the following statement in at least 12-point boldface type:
“The schedule of progress payments must specifically describe each phase of work, including the type and amount of work or services scheduled to be supplied in each phase, along with the amount of each proposed progress payment. IT IS AGAINST THE LAW FOR A CONTRACTOR TO COLLECT PAYMENT FOR WORK NOT YET COMPLETED, OR FOR MATERIALS NOT YET DELIVERED. HOWEVER, A CONTRACTOR MAY REQUIRE A DOWNPAYMENT.”

This language does not appear in the contract provided by Kitchen Experts.


This list may not be complete as we have discovered numerous issues over the past 4 weeks. We are not certain that all issues have been discovered.

Misrepresentation and false advertising
Based on the Kitchen Experts site and conversations, we had expectations that include but were not limited to:

  • 3/4” construction
  • full-overlay
  • quality slides and cabinets

We understood that this would mean that the kitchen would cost more.

During the initial conversation Kitchen Experts on their web site ( ) and on their Diamond Certified page ( referred to many of the quality aspects that we had expected to see. (The relevant web pages are included in Attachments):

  • “Every one of the company’s products is custom built by its in-house craftsmen, and it also offers complimentary in-home design consultation.”
  • Metal shelf rests
  • and other representations as to quality

Demolition and Preparation

On 17 January 2013, Kitchen Experts began demolition. During the demolition process there were several issues:

  • On the wall above the stove, the existing drywall had cooking grease coating and linoleum. Kitchen Experts’ foreman, Efrain, had no plan to remove the grease and linoleum. We had to insist that Efrain remove the drywall and grease. We are not certain the grease was removed as we did not observe it being removed. That spot on the wall was covered with a fresh layer of mud.
  • After the initial demo work on 17 January 2013, Kitchen Experts left a dripping water line with one of our buckets propped underneath the line. We did not notice this until after the bucket had overflowed. We had to empty the bucket multiple times during that night.
  • During the initial demo work, water damage under the sink was discovered. Kitchen Experts once again had to be pressed to fix the damaged subfloor.
  • Efrain had no plan to remove the old flooring. According to Efrain, the new flooring would be laid over the old flooring. This would have meant an uneven transition to the dining room floor which also was to be done by the Kitchen Experts. We had to insist that the old flooring needed to be demo-ed.
  • On or about Tuesday 22 January 2013, Kitchen Experts brought a single worker out to quickly demo the old linoleum.
  • Uncovered openings in the floor: In the hallway cabinet area and the section of damaged flooring under the sink were left open or partially open. These openings allow animal access into the crawl space. These opening were repeatedly left open resulting in our cat getting trapped under the house.
  • Only after 2 personal visits from John Gonzalves, John Lupo and Tim Bergeson was the garbage mostly collected on 18 February 2013, 32 days after the demolition started, from our side yard. This in spite of Kitchen Experts being notified repeatedly both on the phone and in person. (See Attachment-Demolition Photos).
  • On 18 February 2013, the clean-up crew arrived with no tools such as wheelbarrows, brooms or shovels. They borrowed our yard waste container as an improvised wheelbarrow. In the process of cleaning up they left a trail of debris through our yard and out to the curb. See Attachment-Demolition Photos, their clean-up was considerably less than complete.

“Build to fit” commitment not met

Kitchen Experts commits to a kitchen that is built to fit and customized to the kitchen dimensions. Kitchen Experts promised and is responsible to build the kitchen to the plans on file with the City and attached to the permit. (See Attachment-Build To Fit Photos).

This responsibility has not been met:

  • On 28 November 2012, Tim Bergeron and John Gonzalves came to our house to do the blueprints. During that meeting, they were both reminded that the kitchen dimensions were being changed as was indicated on the architectural plans. They also received the second payment of $15565.20
  • A&G Construction, the contractor hired to do the structural work, was paid in part to widen the opening between the kitchen and hallway from 32” to 42”. A&G Construction completed the framing for the structural alterations that created the refrigerator alcove and the hallway cabinet openings. This work was completed and signed off prior to the Kitchen Experts starting work.
  • Kitchen Experts did not do field measurements after A&G Construction completed work.
  • Kitchen Experts cabinet installation team discovered that the widened opening was too wide for the cabinets that Kitchen Experts had ordered. On their own initiative, Kitchen Experts narrowed the opening back down to 36”
  • The refrigerator opening is 38” wide. Kitchen Experts installed a cabinet that was too narrow (36”) and too shallow ( 24” instead of 30 3/4” ). Kitchen Experts installed recessed panels to narrow the opening.
  • The hallway cabinet opening is 15 3/4”, the floor cabinet installed was 18 1/8”. The hung cabinet was similarly missized. Furthermore the delivered hung cabinet was 40” high, which completely covers the plugins in the hallway alcove. The protruding cabinets are shown on the building plans as recessed into the hallway alcove. As currently installed, people to bump their hips into the exposed corner of the hallway cabinet. Adding the granite top will cause further intrusion into the hallway.
  • Cabinet size choice shows a similar failure to build to fit.
    • On the hallway side of the kitchen there are 2 cabinets side-by-side sized 33” and 24”. This difference of 11” is quite noticeable.
    • On the outside wall, there is a 6” fill piece
    • The dishwasher opening is an inch too wide and too high – requiring additional fill pieces
      The kitchen sink cabinet is off-centered to the right by 3/4”

Electrical work

Kitchen Experts team did a poor and incomplete electrical installation. (See Attachment-Electrical Plumbing Photos)

  1. Lighting is poorly positioned with very little light near the refrigerator and excess light near the sink
  2. Unnecessary junction boxes that require holes to be cut in the cabinet bodies to access:
    • 2 junction boxes installed in the outside wall upper corner cabinet
    • 1 junction box in the cabinet over the refrigerator
  3. Power was cut to the existing outlet in the dining room to the left of the kitchen opening.
  4. An existing base-level socket next to the dining room slider was incorrectly removed.
  5. The dishwasher will require cutting an additional hole to connect.
  6. A light is not flush with the ceiling

Plumbing work

  • The new airgap connection is protruding into the kitchen unnecessarily
  • As was previously mentioned, during initial plumbing work a water line was left dripping
  • During the inspection, the inspector noted that the hot water line was missing a hammer valve.
  • There is no water line installed to the refrigerator as required by the architectural plans


  • Existing drywall was minimally impacted. Painting was scheduled to occur prior to the cabinets being installed. No painting occurred.
  • The ceiling furnace vent is not flush with the ceiling. This existing problem was not addressed in spite of being pointed out numerous times.

Cabinet Quality

During our initial visit to the Kitchen Experts showroom, John Gonzalves stated that Kitchen Experts only provide high quality products. Kitchen Experts voicemail greeting, literature and website makes statements touting the quality of the cabinets provided by Kitchen Experts. Unfortunately, we have found those statements inconsistent with the reality in our kitchen. Several friends in the construction field have seen our cabinets and are appalled at the poor quality of the cabinets.

We had paid specifically for quality cabinets. Kitchen Experts delivered DECO brand cabinets. DECO has a showroom on 450 McLaughlin. On January 28, we obtained a quote for the exact same cabinets from the DECO showroom for $7300 + $700 for installation. (See attached DECO quote) (See Attachment Cabinet Quality)

The low-cost of the DECO brand is reflected in these problems we have discovered:

  • Stain Consistency:
    • Different tones of stain (many times with in the same cabinet)
    • Incompletely applied (dry spots)
    • Drip marks
    • Bubbling that indicates a finish that was still tacky was placed agains another surface
    • Scrap marks
    • Unstained portions
    • Texture inconsistencies
    • Over-applied drips
    • Dovetails not stained
  • Cabinet box dimensions. The only dimension mentioned in our contract is 3/4” so we were expecting 3/4” cabinet box construction, instead we got 1/2”
  • Multiple drawers bind:
    • peninsula pullout drawers
    • spice racks next to stove opening
  • Loose glass in the outside wall corner cabinet door
  • Exposed nail in a drawer
  • Drawers that are mounted crooked so as to block a door from closing.
  • The facing in the hallway-side lazy susan is separated from the cabinet floor
  • All cabinets exhibit gaps around the sides and back to easily shine light through.
  • Numerous broken dovetails
  • Plastic shelf anchors when all Kitchen Expert’s advertising states metal shelf holders
  • no pleats in the cabinet interior to properly hang cabinets
  • The cabinet doors with in a pair are often times misaligned from each other.
  • Inconsistent gaps between doors in a pair
  • 3/4” overlay for doors rather than the full overlay promised both by contract and the web site.
  • Hung corner cabinets have wood shelves rendering the cabinet overhead light pointless, contract states glass shelves.

Cabinet installation

  • As noted earlier, there are 3 unnecessary electric junction boxes that are accessible via the cabinets. This results in holes that are hacked into the cabinet sides and backs.
  • Saw burn marks:
    • 2 spice racks were cut to fit next to the stove
    • the unnecessary side paneling in the refrigerator opening
  • Filler for nail holes do not match the original stain
  • Crown on the hung cabinet between slider and bay window is crooked.
  • Crown on the hung cabinet to the right of sink has a gap big enough for a screw to be inserted
  • Floor Cabinets are shimmed up too high
  • dishwasher cabinet is 36” high rather than 34” high as required.
  • granite countertop will not properly go into the bay window.
  • Kitchen Experts crew requested that A & G Construction lower the height of the bay window by 1/4”.
  • Kitchen Experts installed the base cabinets on the outside wall too high for the granite to go into the bay window.

Supervision / Project Management

  • There has been no on-site supervision.
  • Dominique Lupo, the project manager has never been to our job site.
  • Tim Bergeron, the designer, only visited our house twice. Once before A & G Construction began and once with John Lupo on 14 February 2013. Tim arrived over 50 minutes late for the meeting indicating that perhaps he did not know the location of our house.
  • There was no consistent onsite contact person
  • All the issues highlighted in this letter were issues that we as the homeowners have had to discover.

Brief Timeline since 29 January 2013

  • These construction issues have lead to us, on 29 January 2013 notifying Dominique Lupo that we were suspending work on our kitchen until the issues could be addressed. This suspension occurred prior to the template for the granite counter top being cut and prior to any flooring being delivered or installed.
  • 5 February 2013 – During John Gonzalves (the Kitchen Experts sales person) visit:
    • John Gonzalves was informed verbally of the nature of the issues listed in this letter.
    • John Gonzalves repeatedly insisted that the cabinets were of excellent quality.
    • when the numerous cabinet issues detailed in this letter were pointed out to John Gonzalves, he repeatedly insisted that those issues existed only because the cabinet installation was not complete,
    • John Gonzalves was informed about the demolition garbage pile. John Gonzalves acknowledged that the garbage should have been picked up,
  • 14 February 2013 – A signed certified letter was sent to Kitchen Experts providing written notification that the project was being suspended until the issues were resolved. (Attachment #3)
  • 14 February 2013 – John Lupo and Tim Bergeron visited for approximately 3.5 hours. Tim was approximately 1 hour late. During this meeting,
    • the list of issues in this letter was conveyed;
    • a copy of the letter sent previously that day (Attachment #3)
    • John and Tim were also informed again about the demolition garbage pile;
    • John Lupo, when confronted with the major cabinet flaws, repeatedly insisted that that those issues existed only because the cabinet installation was not complete;
    • John Lupo acknowledged that:
      • as of that morning, this was the first he had heard of the _____ project and was unaware of our project and its status. Multiple times during this meeting, John had to be told by the _____s significant details concerning the project. The ____s had to repeat many details provided to John Gonzalves 9 days earlier. These details included:
        • AFTER work was suspended, the granite installer called to schedule a time to template the granite
        • AFTER work was suspended, the flooring installer had called T_____ to confirm a time to start installation of the flooring on Friday, February 1, 2013. T____ informed the installer that the project was on hold
        • John was unaware who was the foreman on the project and who the project manager was.
      • the cabinet installation work was not in fact complete,
      • Kitchen Experts’ electrical installation passed a code inspection but was of lesser quality
      • Kitchen Experts’ plumbing installation was incomplete ( water line to refrigerator was not installed and no hammer valves installed )
      • incorrectly narrowed the opening between the hallway and the kitchen
      • missized the hallway cabinet and cabinets in the kitchen itself
      • the cabinets were DECO cabinets
    • John Lupo talked with Gary Garcia (A & G Construction) about the positioning of the kitchen bay window using P_____’s phone. During this call, John Lupo was quite rude to Gary Garcia and tried to blame Gary and his team for positioning the bay window too low. Gary Garcia was personally present when the Kitchen Experts foreman made a mark on the framing stud to indicate the correct window height. John Lupo demanded to know why Gary Garcia accepted and followed the Kitchen Experts request.
    • because there were many verbal statements made over the 3 1/2 hour conversation, John Lupo was asked to send to the _____s a written proposal to address the issues. This proposal has not been received
  • 18 February 2013 – A Kitchen Experts cleanup crew cleaned up the large debris only in the backyard. They left a trail of drywall and other garbage going to the curb. This incomplete cleanup happened 35 days after the garbage was created; 13 days after John Gonzalves was informed, 4 days after John Lupo and Tim Bergeron were informed of the continuing garbage issue. This “cleanup” was not complete – there continues to be bits of garbage left behind including a broken radio and nails.
  • 21 February 2013 Gary Garcia from A & G Construction contacted Tim to try to resolve the issue of window height and how the granite should be laid. Gary conveyed to P_____ (via text messages) that when Gary called Tim Bergeron at Kitchen Experts. Tim transferred him to Kristine who knew nothing of our project. Dominique has not return Gary’s calls in the past week.
  • 7 March 2013, we sent a notice to Kitchen Experts certified priority demanding that Kitchen Experts respond to the issue. Kitchen Experts replied requesting that we journey 40 miles to the Pleasanton showroom, on weekdays, during the day. This would require that we take a full day’s vacation and arrange evening babysitting for our children.

Next steps

At this point, we feel that our efforts to resolve this issue have reached an impasse.

To summarize:

  • we were sold cabinets that we do not want at any price
  • excessive early payments that seem to be prohibited by law
  • contract was violated in numerous ways
  • potential state law violations
  • no supervision or quality control
  • misrepresentation of cabinet quality
  • poor installation quality
  • Kitchen Expert representatives repeated insistence that the cabinets and the installation was a “quality” job
  • every issue we had to push to get recognized as an issue

Kitchen Experts of California has failed to deliver a quality job. My wife is a CPA and I am a software engineer – we are not experts in kitchen design and construction. In spite of this lack of professional construction knowledge we have been able to uncover numerous severe problems with Kitchen Experts Of California’s work.

At no time did any Kitchen Experts employee notice any of these problems. John Gonzalves on his visit kept on asserting that it was a great job and a quality installation.

We are not prepared nor able to monitor and supervise Kitchen Experts to ensure that the next time they will do a quality job and deliver the quality merchandise.

At this point we would like Kitchen Experts to return our money paid so far minus a reasonable allowance for the demolition. We do not feel that they should be compensated for any electrical work. Because of the random wires and disconnected outlets, the electrical is in an unsafe condition.

The plumbing work also does not deserve compensation as it is incomplete and questionable.

In light of the circumstances, we request Kitchen Experts Of California:

  1. refund $30,000 (please note that neither the granite nor flooring was cut or installed)
  2. pay for the cost of repairing the electrical work and the cost of completing the plumbing work,
  3. remove the DECO cabinets (or pay for the removal)
  4. provide a written release of all liens
  5. provide a release so that the building permit can be reassigned to another contractor.
  6. released unconditionally from all aspects of the contract between Kitchen Experts Of California and the _____

Posted in rants.

31 Responses

Stay in touch with the conversation, subscribe to the RSS feed for comments on this post.

  1. Joy Lanzaro says

    Dear Patrick,

    I regret to read about your experience with Kitchen Experts of California here. Kitchen Experts of California, Inc. has been terminated from the Diamond Certified program.

    Joy Lanzaro
    Director – Mediation & Compliance

  2. Nate says

    Would you recommend A&C Construction – if yes, what is their telephone number?

  3. MrInsBrokerSF says

    Thanks for writing – tough this was overly long to make a very clear point about misrepresentation of quality in materials and workmanship.

    1> Just as some people are unreasonable, or impossible to please, some people are
    unethical, and seek to take unfair advantage of their customers.

    2> When you work with a truly top quality contractor, you often pay nothing down.
    Depending on the specifications, and nature of the work, their may not even be a
    written contract. The odd thing is, your job it done quickly, to code, to specs,
    and top quality before you receive the bill – which happens to match the pre agreed
    price. And if anything goes, wrong, they don’t make excuses, they make

    3> When a contract is used, it’s wise to also use an attorney well familiar with
    construction contracts. Failure to do this can be financially devastating, as well
    as emotionally damaging. You could learn too late that even if you are right, you
    can not afford the risk to prove it in court!

    4> The best money you spend on your project will be research and planning.

    • patrick says

      Its important to get rid of the bad actors and explain what was wrong.

  4. Jbmiller says

    Thank you for alerting us to your experience with kitchen Experts of California. We are in the process of remodeling our kitchen and have met with them. Yes, An hours drive from our home. We found many differences in the products we saw in Pleasanton and what the simple outline promised. We have been alerted and fortunately did not give them the deposit they insisted upon. You probably saved us a great deal of money and pain. We are so appreciative

  5. Dorothy says

    Thank you. I used this company and have had a very painful 10+ month experience. I am now disputing the final pmt – they say they are done – I never accepted the completed product. If you are monitoring posts I would be grateful to speak with you. 04/10/16

    • Dawn says

      Hello Dorothy. I would like to speak to you on behalf of another consumer with problems. My name is Dawn and I can be reached at 925-932-8225. Thanks.

  6. Carolyn Cheng says

    I wished I had read your letter before my kitchen renovation. I am in the middle of a nightmare dealing with Kitchen Expert of California. Anyone knows the owner of this business? This company is nothing but a scam.

    • Dawn says

      Hello Carolyn. I would like to speak to you on behalf of another consumer with problems. My name is Dawn and I can be reached at 925-932-8225. Thanks.

  7. Patricia J Brown says

    If anyone has the contact information for John Lupo, owner of Kitchen Experts, I would love to have it. They did my kitchen and I qualified for their so called 30% discount but didn’t get it (it is still being advertised on TV every Saturday)! My kitchen was supposed to be $36K plus appliances and when I asked for evidence that I got the 30% discount they sent me a very poor quality ‘made-up’ document showing my kitchen was supposed to be $64K and then discounted to $36K,! The $36K was my original estimate, so how can they do this????? By, the way, my kitchen is very, very small (I live in a mobile home). They also guarantee your kitchen will be done in 2-3 weeks, mine took months. I also believe that I was ripped off on my appliances, because I paid approximately $7K for all new appliances, well when I look on line, that is about right for new Frigidaire Appliances, but when I called to get them to send me a receipt for my appliances the person I talked to said they had been purchased from ‘Airport Appliances’ and those are usually appliances sold cheaper because they have known problems that have been fixed (???), so I doubt they cost KE $7K. And, I have a problem with my granite counter-tops and they just say there is nothing they can do???

    I don’t have as many problems as you did but I do have problems and (I could be wrong) but I believe that Kitchen Experts no longer takes my calls because when I call now, even tho I have the person’s extension number and enter it, my call goes directly to voicemail and no one has ever calls me back! So, I am stuck with problems with appliances, shabby workmanship, etc and no way to get anyone to help me.

    I have tried every way I know how to get the contact info for John Lupo without any luck, so if you have it please send it to me.

    What I really do not understand, is why they keep getting away with this kind of stuff and nothing is done to help us?

  8. John Vincent says

    Mr. Lupo is a con artist and a scammer and is the reason why we need governments help.

  9. Katya says

    13 Feb 2018: At request of Katya:

    Dawn is my attorney and was helping me resolve KE problems. I signed a settlement agreement in which I promised to remove any negative reviews from online. The only negative review I had was on your page and I completely forgot about it until Dawn told me.

    Can you please remove my comments? I just don’t want to have legal issues with KE again.

  10. Katya says

    Moderator: 13 feb 2018: at request of Katya, the original comment describing Katya’s issue was removed:

    Dawn is my attorney and was helping me resolve KE problems. I signed a settlement agreement in which I promised to remove any negative reviews from online. The only negative review I had was on your page and I completely forgot about it until Dawn told me.

    Can you please remove my comments? I just don’t want to have legal issues with KE again.

    • moderator says

      Since my issue was resolved satisfactorily, I would not be a party to a class action. I would suggest documenting everything and contacting the CSLB as I did.

      • Katya says

        Are you the one who filed this official complaint letter ? I have everything very well documented.

        • moderator says

          yes, this was my complaint letter that I crafted and filed. I was very complete as you can see and got a very quick response from the CSLB.

          • Kat says

            Did you file a claim with the bond company in order to receive a refund ? In other words who refunded the money to you?

  11. Jean Muir says

    We are experiencing all the issues we are reading about from various sites and have a long list of complaints. Please contact us if this is for real – we have to move on with life and can’t take anymore broken promises as we have no working kitchen for over two months and they clearly don’t care.

  12. Deborah R says

    I’m so grateful (but sad) to be reading all of this because I’m another one of KE’s victims. The project manager, Sarai Martinez, won’t reply to emails or return phone calls, I have “bubbles” under the laminate floor in 2 rooms – one is 2’x4′ and the other 1’x3′. Both are growing and when I step on them the dining room chair and end table bounce. Numerous other problems and things not completed PLUS they lost the house key they hid in my yard after I forbade them to hide a key.

    They installed a range that doesn’t go below 275 degrees which means I can’t bake certain recipes or use a “keep warm” setting. What a mess!

    I’m going to let John Lupo, the owner, know that I’m ready to file a formal complaint. Btw I’ve cc’d him on all my efforts to communicate with the PM and he’s never bothered to reply or apologize. My friends were about to hire them until they heard my stories. Lucky them!

    I also don’t think I really got a discount – another issue to pursue.

  13. Phoebe J says

    OMG!!!! Thank you ALL for posting your heart breaking stories and horrifying experiences with Kitchen Experts of California, airing on Saturdays and Sundays every week on Channel 7. Just before reading your postings, I have contacted and left a message with the Kitchen Experts team to call back for a quote to remodel my kitchen (after seeing the ad on the TV yesterday). I am so grateful to see all of your thoughtfully written comments here today. Thank you for sharing and warning! I will make sure that everyone at my work, their/my family members and friends are not going to get trapped into this scam business. You all should contact ABC Channel 7 Michael Finney (415-954-777) to help stop airing KE advertisement or they should also be liable for the misrepresentation of the company, i.e. “Completion in 3 weeks” repeatedly stating by the TV host “Janelle Marie”! 🙁 I say this because, not everyone is so lucky to see all your postings here before making the mistakes!

  14. Dave B says

    I should have found this website a 1 1/2 years ago. I too contracted with KE. At the first meeting, they took a $1,000 check, then a 26k check. 3 months later KE started. On the first day, they trumped up a extra for over 4k. I disagreed. KE worked about 6 days on and off. Mostly starting late morning and working till 9 or 10 pm. We we’re excited that they finally started, but disagreed with the disruption. We are normally get up at 3:30 to 4 am. After 3 week of on and off KE delivered the cabinets at 9 pm. Excited, we allowed it. For the next day install took place. KE demanded the 2nd 40% installment of 26 k. Nnobody shows up, for a week. They are now past contract completion date. After several trips to the office because of unanswered phone calls and Emails to, pm Sarai Martinez. I finally got them to return. Completion was scheduled for 10/20 but now it looked like we couldn’t do our Thanksgiving in our house, as planned. We cancelled our vacation, that was to take place right after the holidays, so that we would be available for KE to finish. KE arrived to install the hardwoods. They were to match the existing open room adjacent to the kitchen. They had the correct type of wood in the contract, KE even took a sample strip from the room they were going to match. They delivered and installed red oak, we have white oak. The installation was to have ” Chevron corners”. They did it 3 corners, but the 4th was a but joint. The finisher didn’t understand that it was all to be toe nailed. Most of it was but the corners were shot full of a random top nail pattern. This was the week before Thanksgiving. I didn’t think, even if they worked steady, they could be done by the holiday. Furious, I called our Sarai, no answer. I drove out to meet Sarai and her boss/owner John Lupo (mind you, I’m 30 minutes away) I calmly explained my problem. I was given several statements.
    1) some customers you can never make happy.
    2) you have been a trouble client from the get go
    3) you can stain Red oak and make it white.
    4) I was insulting there business practices, and John Lupo had to excuse himself because he was getting to upset with me being there.
    I never raised my voice, swore or insulted his company or John personally.

    There last date at my house was 11/17/16. As of today, 10/19/17, 11 months later, I have unfinished wiring, plumbing, floors, no appliances, paint, or first finishes.

    Oh, by the way, we had a new heater to be installed immediately after the kitchen was to be finished. After seeing the unfinished wiring, uncompleted gas lines ran, the HVAC contractor wouldn’t come clean up and be responsible for another crafts problems, especially since, as a professional, he sees where KE has cut corners and he doesn’t do business like that.

    So, no heat, no air since last September when the first system was removed.

    In January we contacted Contractors state license board to file a complaint. With completed documentation, a list of 7 businesses and profession code violations detailed in letter and pictures, Clsb came out in April. Remember, they are a division of Consumer Affairs, they can’t do much for me, but they can stop this from happening to other people. So they think. We have seen the first draft by Clsb against KE, but best we can tell, the final has yet to be assessed.

    I filed a claim against his 2 bonds, that has yet to be settled, I requested money back from KE. KE say they ” earned there money and none is due, as a matter of fact, I still owe them”

    In summary, I have no kitchen, the whole back half of my house is torn up. I have no heat, mold growing in my basement from Ill completed work.

    I complained on Yelp. More less what I’ve said here. My account has been closed. My wife did a softer account of their digressions and added the mess and uncompleted work left behind, her account was closed. Yelp is a farce. KE has 5 star reviews in southern California, Arizona and Nevada, many in northern California also. None of the 5 stars would communicate with me about their success stories. So that’s what I truly assume them to be, just stories.

    Lawyers, yes I am lawyered up and will follow John Lupo to the edge of the earth. John Lupo, who do think you are that you and your company can do this to families. My wife a LeCordon Blue trained chef, is now suffering from depression, because she cannot practice her passion, our family cannot come over, the grandkids cannot play in this construction zone. I want to be whole again. How, John, do you sleep at night. Probably warm and snug and with a happy wife and family. Well John, if I haven’t explained well enough, I don’t live like you.

    I would not recommend Kitchen Experts to my worst enemy. Negative 100 stars

    I have met at least one of you before, anybody with an active case against KE should agree to get together and discuss a class action or..some solution

  15. Dave B says

    See my comments of 10/19/17. Nothing has changed, except now KE has counter sued me.

    Are they willing to make me whole again ? I think not. It looks like they have attack dog type lawyers ready to pounce.

    I would not recommend kitchen experts, unless your an unemployed or retired lawyer, need a something to litigate and really don’t need a kitchen.

  16. Angela Willis says

    I was already screwed so badly by a kitchen contractor to whom I was referred by my insurer State Farm, due to a kitchen pipe bursting. Contractor referred to me by State Farm was unlicensed and perpetrated so much fraud project that ENTIRE kitchen must be completely redone. Everything but floor gutted again. Have not had kitchen since May 27, 2018.

    First time shame on you, second time shame on me a great lawyer once told me.

    I am 50. Have heart failure. My occupation was till 2016, when I retired, was that of a law office manager/paralegal (specializing) in areas of insurance defense and construction defect cases.

    This review terrifies me.

  17. Tom Bombadil says

    Frightening reviews of Kitchen Experts. I believe they have rebranded as new company based out of Livermore named Kitchen Fantastic which has five star reviews on Yelp for the past year. KE on the other hand has degraded to three stars on Yelp. John Lupo is the same owner of Kitchen Fantastic and sounds like he is making the same promises: low price, fast install, great advice!

    No idea about execution because I cannot imagine signing up for the nightmares described above.

  18. Dave B says

    A new kitchen has been built after discovering more problems with kitchen experts work.

    We’ve met for mediation and were offered a joke for compensation. KE’s team say’s John Lupo has moved on and they are trying to deal with all of the problems he left behind. John may have been part of the problem, but come on, didn’t they all know what they were doing to these home owners ?

    Apperantly they are under new ownership. Did these new owners know what kind of issues and the type of quality they did ? Who are these guys. It still has the same “responsible managing employee” as far as the Contractor State License board is concerned.

    So nothing really has changed I’m sure.

    • David Bianchini says

      The last update from me;
      I got screwed and you will too, by KE! I have reached a settlement with my attorneys and theirs. No silence agreement between us, I will speak openly and state my beliefs and opinions about John Lupo, johny Gonzalvez, sarai Martinez and the operations m

  19. Steve Adams says

    John Lup0 now owns Legacy Appliances & Kitchen Fantastic.
    I confirmed that KE has new ownership.

    I found this online through another lawsuit:
    John Lupo
    616 Timpanogos Lane
    Danville, CA 94526

  20. Marie Lopez says

    we are one of the victims, we spent $116,000. on Kitchen Experts. The project just got done, but my appliances are not working. Our refrigerator is not cold and the freezer is not making ice. Kitchen Experts they said they are done with us, we have to call the service for repair. We spent $8,000 on the refrigerator and its not working from the day one. Kitchen Experts and sale guy no where to be found. I need to report them on better business bureau, write them on YELP. We don’t want another customer to be scam by them.

  21. Dave B says

    Patrick, the original poster and possibly the moderator was very lucky to get to KE early before they built a large defense team. The follow is my opinion and to the best of my memoryOur contract was about $62k before appliances. It cost us an additional 70k to complete the kitchen after KE abandoned our project

  22. EZ E says

    Read this case below: Basically, John Lupo sold Kitchen Experts to Cardinal, who alleged that he discovered after purchase that Kitchen Experts was paying employees under the table, had undisclosed debts, and Lupo conned him to buying the company and reformed a new company, Kitchen Fantastic. In my opinion, I would not trust John Lupo or his wife Andreana Michael after reading the comments in this forum and the allegations of that complaint. Knowledge is power.


  23. Sue Faria says

    8/30/2020 I just saw a TV program with Janelle Marie as the host and an Orinda couple touting the wonderful merits of Kitchen Experts. Based on the nightmarish experience this writer has had with the company, I am so glad I did my due diligence and wouldn’t touch them with a ten foot pole. It seems that one hand doesn’t know what the other is doing and no one takes responsibility for anything. Thank you so much for documenting your disgraceful experience and alerting others to find a different company to do the renovation. Also, although there were some good reviews on, many were terrible. Based on those reviews alone, getting a good result by using this company would be fraught with potential disappointment and one I would never do after discovering all the negatives by doing my research on a company.

Some HTML is OK

or, reply to this post via trackback.