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Client References

Hey Mr. Johnston:

Just wanted to update you on the carpet … Mohawk finally agreed to replace the carpet and it was completed yesterday.  Thou I must say much of my success came from Debbie Osborne (Lowes) and her persistence in helping me to achieve this goal.  I appreciate your input and speaking with her as well.   Thank you for your part and I hope all is going well for you.  ~ Barbara Lambdin, Holly Springs

My lawyer and I both agree, Great report! Thank you so much. Jack Bond, Daniels, WV

Thanks Steve for always quickly responding and the great service. You will be our “go to” guy for future floor inspections. Thanks!

Danny Rogers, Paul Davis (Rock Hill, SC)


Thank you for the report.  But if you make a conclusion like this report you have already validated the claim (which is great)  I just don’t need a sample if you can validate it.  I get so many samples it’s always easier to get one less.  Of course if it is a decline it is best to send one because I will end up testing it.  Thank you Steve.

Thank you,

Dolly Thompson


I can not thank you enough for this!

I am so appreciative to have reached an honest and helpful person which is rare it seems. All I’ve dealt with since my parents’ deaths are quite the opposite (not caring at all that they are robbing me of my life), and having been far too overprotected all my life, it is overwhelming dealing with it all alone.

Thank you so much. Win or lose, you have made a difference in my faith and strength! Thank you.

I’ll get in touch later this week.

Sharon Rhea

Sharon Rhea Ford

Thanks Steve. Great report and details. I will get with Tony to determine next steps.


Mike Huckeba – AINS, AIC

Regional Network Manager – Southeast

I just reviewed the reports and photos. Great information!! Thank you for your help!

Jill Platt |Claims Examiner | Risk Management |Lowes


Gary and I wanted to Thank you once again for coming to our home on August 13,2018 to inspect our hardwood flooring. We are so appreciative of the extra time you spent with us, not only examining our floors, but also explaining why we have been experiencing ongoing problems with our floors/subfloors. We would also like to Thank you for providing us with such a detailed report (with photos). All of this information will help us with builder accountability! Thank you Steve!

Gary and Claudia Andrews

Thank you for all the detail. This is very helpful. I will be discussing this with our management staff and our legal department on Wednesday. If I have follow-up questions, I will call you directly.\

Thank you so much for your prompt report.

Andrea Petrey

QA/ Compliance Specialist

Innovation Group



Thanks for the very timely and detailed inspection report. All I can say is “WOW”. I did speak with the attorney you recommended and found out some of the costs I can’t recover if I sue the retailer including her fees. I can recover the cost to replace the floors and your inspection fee. Might have to take this through small claims court to avoid attorney fees, but this report will be more than enough to show the court the floors failed due to installer error. Thanks again for your promptness getting the inspection done and report sent with LOTS of pictures to back everything up.

David Hylton

Thanks for the very detailed report Steve

I was able to review it in-depth and feel that you did a great job in capturing our concerns and it appears that you noted many additional problems that we either overlooked or did not know of those to be problems as you have pointed out.

Thanks for the detailed and thorough report Steve,

Steve Klingensmith and Dawn Hill

Thank you, Steve. We received the paid invoice, the zip file, and the report. We We also appreciate your guidance and the time you took to educate and inform us.

Kind regards,

Cynthia Redwine

Thank you so much for your speedy attention to both of our customers.

Have a great day!

Angel Hugee, Wakefield Flooring

Thank you Steven…this was a very well-written report.

Thank You,

Kristin Stanley, Claims Analyst II-Mohawk Industries


Thank you for being so thorough in your process. Am I able to share these documents (both), in their original form, with the homeowner in an effort to prove the case that his floors are within manufacturers specs and do not require any further consideration?…

Thanks again. It was a pleasure working with you.

Jeff Conger, Chelsea Building Group

Hi Steve,

Thank you so much for providing a legitimate, professional inspection.  Your report accurately describes the history and remainder of your report  professionally and clearly explain your findings.  Thank you for including the Morningstar installation guidelines. After the second installation, I had repeatedly asked Lumber Liquidators for the manufacturer’s warranty.  These guidelines are probably included in that document.  They repeated denied or ignored my requests. Now, I see why.

I go to talk to an attorney next week. She will draft a demand letter.  If Lumber Liquidators or Watson do not agree to pay the demands I outline in my letter, I may contact you again, regarding your expert witness testimony.

Many thanks,

Kim Erland


That’s great work. Thank you for all your help.

Joseph Ward McMurray, Attorney at Law

Got it Steve. Thank you for the amazingly quick turnaround.  That is impressive and much appreciated.

Danny Rogers

Paul Davis Restoration (Rock Hill, SC)

Thank you.  You did a great job very detailed.

Thank you, Dana Worley

CFS Corporate

Customer Service Representative


Thank you for a detailed report. You are an asset to this industry, and again, your professionalism speaks volumes.

Dr. Gary Klein

Check headed your way! Thank you so much for your help! As always , your reports are thorough and clear.

Thank you!

Jill Platt |Claims Examiner | Risk Management


Thank you so much for helping me out!

Corrinda Bell

Lowes Executive Customer Relations

Steve, thanks for getting the inspection & inspection report done so quickly!!

Cheryl Bowman, Mohawk Claims


Thank you so much for the great detail and information. Your work is appreciated.

Megan Cross, Mohawk Claims

(e mail sent  Wed 4/30/2014 2:17 PM) This is the most detailed report I have had in 14 years.   Thank you.



(e mail dated 7/3/2015)


You are the man, they caved!  They have agreed to redo all the floors and replace the wood in the affected areas, with the vendor of my choice.  My wife loves you and I’m out of the dog house, I owe you one!!  Your report was so detailed and unbiased there was nothing for them to argue about anymore, they even suggested you provide a referral to fix the damaged floors. I will want you to come inspect the new work in process to ensure it’s being done to industry standards! Thanks again for everything!

James Stoll

Charlotte, NC 2015

Yes, you are very objective and fair to all, rarity in this world!! Thanks so much for all your help!


James E. Stoll
Director, Financial Planning & Analysis

(E mail dated 8/4/2014)


You should add prophet to your title and resume.  You’ve been right about everything Steve.  We’ve been trying to acclimate the new hardwoods and just can’t get to a comfortable ratio, right now it’s about 4% but we also don’t trust the existing OSB subfloor so we are removing it and installing Advantech.  The existing OSB is flaking and has no holding power and there is too much deflection.  The subfloor had to have been saturated and we’ve been able to poke right through it with a crowbar in many places.

We’re still fighting with the builder and will hopefully come to a settlement of the complaint.

Thanks again! Chuck Purgason (Pittsboro, NC)

(follow up E mail dated 5/14/2015)


After fixing the house we decided to sell it and it’s closing today.  I wanted to thank you for helping me.  You were right about the problems and the ultimate remedy. The floors and the new subfloor are performing as they should have when we bought the house.  If you ever need a reference then feel free to contact me.

Best Regards, Chuck Purgason (Pittsboro, NC)

I have had the pleasure of working with Steve Johnston on several flooring cases.  I have employed him as an expert witness and have used Steve in court.  Steve makes a superb expert witness, is sure of his conclusions and opinions and is unflappable.  Steve is immensely knowledgeable in his field and this shows on the witness stand.  I can find no one who has the expertise and knowledge of Steve in flooring matters.  His recommendations to effectuate a remedy to a problem are solid.  In short, Steve is good in and out of court.  I highly recommend him.

Randy Ingram


Thank you very much Steve. Great job! The photos were excellent. I’ll let you know if Don has any questions.

Thank you very much.

Mary Pennington

Team of Flooring Inspectors


Thank you for your efforts – greatly appreciated. I look forward to doing business with you in the future.

Take care,

Tom Goodham, Vice President, Manufacturing & Operations

Teragren Fine Bamboo Flooring, Panels & Veneer

Our company, Creative Flooring Solutions, LLC, a flooring installation company, has been relying on Steve Johnston of A-1 First Impressions Inspections & Consulting since 2011. In our experience, his work is the most unbiased and reliable in this field. Customer satisfaction is a top priority for Steve. He has always been able to work around not only our schedule, but most importantly our customer’s/end user’s schedule when we’ve needed to set up a flooring inspection. He is very attentive to what the customers concerns are with the flooring and makes sure to ask the customer and end user exactly what the concerns are.

Usually Steve is doing an inspection after the manufacture has sent their “inspector” out. Steve usually asks whoever was on site (usually the end user) about their manufacture inspection experience. On most occasions the end user points out “things” that Steve does during his inspection that the manufacture “inspector” never did. Some of these “things” can be as simple as asking what the concern is with the floor (as mentioned above) or even spending more than 5 minutes on site.

Steve is good about putting the end user at ease while the inspection is going on. He also explains not only to us but also to our customer, what he is doing step by step throughout the inspection process. Remember we are hiring a complete “stranger” to “invade” our customers’ home so we greatly appreciate Steve’s ability to put our customers at ease while he is there. Steve is extremely knowledgeable about flooring.

One of the best qualities about him is that he is willing and wants to share the knowledge he’s learned over the years with installers and even with the homeowners. There have been many occasions where we or even my subcontractors have called or emailed him just to ask a question or an opinion about an install before we installed a floor.

Steve is a busy man, but always finds time to answer a question. Usually, we have an answer by the end of the day. A lot of times he responds within the first couple of hours. Steve’s reports are unbiased and reliable because that is his true job. You cannot “buy” a report from Steve and we greatly respect that.

We know of other inspectors we could go to and “buy” a report in our favor, but that is not what our company is looking for. We want to know when an issue is truly our fault so we can learn from our mistakes and improve upon them. We also want to know when an issue really is manufacture or homeowner related. If an issue is found to be manufacture related Steve will stand behind his report.

There are times when it requires taking manufactures to court (not very often, but it can & does happen) to get an issue resolved. I know Steve would be willing to stand up in court with his report in hand and help “argue” the case as long as it really was a manufacturing/product issue.

A-1 First Impressions Inspections & Consulting is not going to be the cheapest company to hire, but you should not be “price shopping” when you are looking to get a true and honest inspection from someone who is as knowledgeable and reliable as Steve. Like everything else in the world we live in you can probably find someone who will do it cheaper, but that person probably will not be inspecting correctly, and once they are paid they will probably disappear.

I can assure you Steve will not disappear once he’s been paid. As mentioned above he is always available to answer questions even if it’s not from one of his inspection reports. If you are looking to have an independent inspection done you will get top quality customer service that is honest and knowledge from Steve at A-1 First Impressions Inspections & Consulting.

Travis & Nikki Brown

Creative Flooring Solutions, LLC


I had a very positive experience with Steve. I hired him as a flooring inspector when my downstairs hardwood floors started to separate from the subfloor. Steve came to my house in a timely manner and produced a very thorough report in a short amount of time. I was involved in a protracted lawsuit and Steve stuck with me as it dragged on. He served as a witness at the trial. His testimony was detailed and thorough, and instrumental in helping me to win my case against a large flooring retailer.

I found Steve to be not just knowledgeable, but honest and reputable as well.

Leah C

Cary, NC


Thank you for your quick response to our request for an inspection.  We are very pleased with your professionalism, your service and your comprehensive detailed report.    It’s not often that we have to request a product inspection but I can assure you that if the need arises in an area in which you serve, we’ll be calling you directly.

Please feel free to stop at HomerWood next time you’re in the area.  We’d love the opportunity to meet you.

Kindest Regards,
Wendy Wescoat

Great Steve!!  THANK YOU!!  GREAT JOB on the test and reports!!  Thank you for your professionalism to your Inspection business!  Call us anytime we can help you in ANY way!!

Beth Brown, FCITS VP

Your responsiveness and good work is  very much appreciated.

Thank you

SUSAN LANG, VP & General Manager

From The Forest, LLC

Piedmont Floors has and will continue to use Steve Johnston for independent flooring inspections. His pursuit for the true and unbiased reasons for a floor failure are second to none. We have use him as a second opinion to confirm the previous inspection findings as true and accurate. Some of these inspections have resulted in a favorable overturn for the consumer and Piedmont Floors while some haven’t. But, when he states his findings, Piedmont Floors knows that whatever is found, it’s honest and unbiased. We would recommend his services to any consumer or flooring store that is in need of an honest inspection.

Charles Snider, President
Piedmont Floors
2011 Enterprise Drive
Forest, VA 24551

You are not like other inspectors; you went out of your way to handle my mistake, thank you. Thanks for the update on the WV inspection too. I hope you have a blessed day,

Deborah L. Grant, Claims Manager

And also from Deborah Grant

Good morning Steve,

Up before the chickens again I see……I hope you have a blessed day!!!

I was in a meeting yesterday and hope you don’t mind but I used your 2 LVT inspections that you did for us as the prime example of a well written and thoroughly examined inspection. I also advised if our company (I) needs to hire an installer on the east coast that you will be the only one hired.


Deborah L. Grant, Claims Manager


Thank you very much for such a thorough report.  I’ve been on the road this week and will be in Hampton Roads tomorrow.  I will forward your invoice so that you can get paid. Thanks again!

Charlie Hedrick
SFPSP Field Specialist
Mid-Atlantic Zone
PH: 804-382-0619

We cannot say enough positive things above Steve Johnston.  He is thorough, knowledgeable, methodical, extremely well organized, and ethical in his approach regarding investigating carpet manufacturing and installation issues.  We would easily recommend him as a qualified expert, and as a independent inspector who will provide the truth no matter where it leads.

Herman L Sigmond

Hi Steve,

Thank you for the very thorough inspection and report.  I appreciate your advise with regard to next steps.  I will let you know how it goes. You have been the first person to take this seriously and act in a timely manner.  Much thanks.


Patty Eppley


Thank you for the report, pictures, and invoice. I really appreciate your help with our effort to remedy our floor situation.


Andy Neill

Hello Steve,

I wanted to let you know that Shaw confirmed with my builder that the carpet needs to be replaced. The builder is in  the process of coordinating shipment of  the new carpet & working with me for replacement & floor repair work.

Thanks again for your service and recommendation to stand my ground.

Joan Been

We installed a high-end wool carpet in our home.  It was the most expensive carpet we’ve ever purchased.  Since this was our retirement home, we decided it was worth the cost considering its environmental friendliness, lasting wear-ability and sustainability.

Immediately post install, we were shocked to find the new carpet was covered with bearding and fuzz and the seam was a line of fuzz across the middle of our floor.  We were told this was normal for wool carpet.  Although, it wasn’t normal for any wool carpets we’ve had in the past.  The bearding and fuzzing became excessive within weeks of our minimal living on it.

Upon our persistence, the retailer sent an inspector to our home who determined after laboratory testing that the carpet was defective.  It failed several tests.  The manufacturer did not accept this inspection and sent their own inspector.  He hardly looked at the carpet or asked any questions.  When I shared the previous laboratory tests with him, he ignored them.  His report came back putting the blame on the installation with no mention of the failed lab tests. He offered to come back and shear the fuzz which was not going to fix the root cause.

We needed peace of mind on this carpet for which we paid over $11,000.  So, we decided it was in our best interest to have an independent inspection.  Through an internet search I found Steve Johnson.  When I called him he spent an hour talking to me on the phone.  He was genuinely interested and listened intently.  He shared with me his background and his impressive training and certifications.

Although he is located several hours away, he agreed to do our inspection.  When he arrived at our home he was very prompt, respectful and professional.   He was extremely thorough with his inspection.  His immediate observations validated that we had valid issues with this carpet.  He took many pictures and left with samples of the carpet which he submitted for more lab tests.

He returned his inspection report promptly which validated without a doubt that the carpet was defective.  Based on his inspection, the manufacturer granted us a complete replacement and installation for the carpet and refunded us the cost of Steve’s inspection.  I would absolutely recommend Steve.  And I would absolutely recommend an independent inspection.  Thanks to Steve’s expert inspection and his credibility, our situation was made right.  Steve has remained in contact with us asking for updates on the progress of our replacement.

Today I can say that we have the carpet we paid for thanks for Steve.  It was our experience that these matters are not taken seriously by the retailer or the manufacturer.  They basically tried to sweep it under the rug (no pun intended).  Had we not been persistent, they would  have neither stood behind their product nor customer satisfaction.  I encourage anyone with a similar situation to be your own advocate because no one else will.

It took 14 months after the initial install until our replacement carpet was installed.  Many of those months were going back and forth with the retailer and manufacturer.  Once they received Steve’s inspection report, we received prompt attention.  Thank you, Steve!

Patty E.  (Murrels Inlet, SC)

Hi Steve,

Thank you for your message! Again, we sincerely appreciate working with you! Your prompt and thorough reports could not be more appreciated by us! Please feel welcome to contact me if you have any questions!

Kind regards,

Amy Dow-Customer Experience Team Leader

Cali Bamboo


Thank you so much for the work you did at our home. I feel that we can finally get our situation resolved. I will highly recommend you to other clients if you need me to act as a reference for you in the future. Again, thanks so much for all your help/assistance.

Sharon and Stuart Smith, Lexana, VA


Thank you for your prompt and professional response to this need. Your report is the most complete I have seen in years. We will definitely keep you in mind for future needs.

Victor Pacheco, ASM, Lowes # 0456 Bristol, VA


Thank you for completing the inspection so quickly and professionally.  The results confirmed what Bryan and I both suspected, but it carries more weight coming from an independent third party as opposed to Lowe’s or Mr. Feger’s installer.  Thank you.

Scott Draughn, Lowe’s Executive Support

Life saver as always.  Thank you Steve.

Joseph Waters, General Sales Manager-Dealers Supply Co.

Thank you, I really enjoy working with a professional!

Karen Gross, MBD Floorcovering Inspection Service

Morning Steve, all I can say is, wow! It is amazing how knowledgeable you are about all of these issues and I am grateful that Wandersen brought you down. Thank you for the feedback on his report, and I will do just as you would advise.

Sincerely, Michael
Michael Knotts
Knotts Development Resources, Inc.


Thanks for your help the other day on the laminate, she is happy now.

Alan Barabe, Styron Floor Covering

Hi Steve;

It’s been a while.  Hope you’re doing well and keeping busy.  Actually, I’m not sure how you keep up with all your travels and paperwork.

Just wanted to share that our attorney, Randy Ingram, is still incapacitated from the back surgery he had almost a year ago.  I don’t know all the details but OMG, I’ll avoid back surgery at almost any cost now.

The dirty carpet lawsuit has been on temporary hold.  Randy believes his recovery will take much longer than anticipated and may refer the case to another attorney. As things develop, I’ll keep you informed.

I continue to feel blessed that I was able to have you, an expert professional with common sense, look at the situation as it was happening. That was and continues to be a relief.

Have a great weekend.

David Lamar-Cary, NC

When you do honest work and communicate well with the customer you will be recognized and receive more business which seems to be what you do well. I don’t fault you for your approach. People deserve to be treated fairly. Sometimes our results are not what the customer expected or wanted but we provide data that is accurate and in the end is better for all parties.

Matt Asbury, Professional Testing Laboratory

Thanks for your integrity! We are fully aware of what some of these inspection companies are doing and it seems to get worse every year. We do understand that some claims will fall back on installer error it is common for them miss a step from time to time but it is nice to know that we will have a unbiased and unaltered inspection report with you.


Joshua Doss, Aaron’s Floor Covering

Thanks Steve. You have been great.

John Tucker

General Manager Serv Pro  Pickens County SC

Steve –

Thank you for the report, we really appreciate you helping us with this. I want to be sure we are all on the same page. The only “error” on our part would be the planks that are too tight in the hall correct? The minimal “un-level” areas are within tolerance correct?

Brandy Brown, Majestic Flooring

Mr. Johnston,

Thank you for such a complete report, the information is accurate. Hoping you have/had a blessed Thanksgiving.

Lee and Frank Evers

Thank you Steve. You always do a great job.

Carolyn Mathis, Mohawk Industries

Hey Steve,

Your report is very concise and accurate.  I can’t thank you enough for being very detailed about what should and needs to be done.   I am hoping this will help them to work with me a little more.  I am very grateful to have had your expertise in this instance.  I will keep you posted as to what is happening or hopefully my adjustor will as well.  Please let me know if i need to do anything else to help you in any way.  I should be back in NC first week of December.

Thank you again,

Wendy Stoltz

Raleigh, NC

Thanks Steve. You have been great.

John Tucker, General Manager

Serv Pro of Pickens County (SC)

Thank you Steve for getting this so quickly. This was a very informative report and this helps a lot. We will all look over everything together tomorrow and will let you know if we have any questions. Thank you again and be safe driving.


Bruce Gravely, Director of Sales-Daricorp

I have to say you write the most thorough and user friendly reports of anyone I work with Steven. You are very busy and blessed for a reason! I promise I have read several hundred reports, yours are hands down the most enjoyable.

Love working with you as you make my life is much easier.

Deb Grant, Marquis Industries


Perfect! Thank you so much for a comprehensive report and lightning speed with which it was completed.

Susan Matthews | PDRP Support Team


Thanks, Steve!

We appreciate your thorough reporting and timeliness. We will be in touch with additional inspections shortly, I’m sure. Let me know if there is anything we can do to help on our end.


Matthew Ajello-Cali Bamboo Claims

Thank you Steve. I will certainly use you in the future. I appreciate your thoroughness and knowledge.

Take care, Chris

I thank you very much and I will talk to my husband about it. I so glad we found you. You were very, very helpful. Thank you!

Melanie Norvell, Jacksonville, NC

Thank you for the EXTRA time you send, not just on this claims, but on all my claim requests. Thank you for all your help. Having read a LOT of inspection reports, there is a reason we will spend more to send some inspectors out, even if there is one located closer. YOU ALWAYS GO ABOVE AND BEYOND !

Tim Jackson, Royalty Carpet Mills

Hi Steve,

Thanks for sending all of these photos over! Pictures make it easier to read the report and put yourself in the house and follow what is going on. They absolutely do, I like them being numbered out as well so I can follow them through the report. Super helpful when talking to customers.


Eric Osuna, Cali Bamboo

Thank you Steve, as always, you are very thorough and prompt! Thank you!!

Wanderson Lima-K W Hardwood Floors