In the world that is custom home building and remodeling I often forget to explain the difference between punch list items and a warranty repair. The bigger the project is the more the punch list items there are likely to be. At what point does a punch list item turn into a warranty repair? Today I’m going to examine how we define punch list items versus warranty items at SG Home Builders.
As I mentioned the bigger the project more punch list items there will be. This is why on small projects such as kitchens, bathrooms, and even basements we like to have all of our punch list items completed before we collect the final payment. Our crew does not want to come back for just one or two little things. We tell our clients when the time comes to be diligent and give us their punch list so we can be done one time. Larger projects typically mean our owners want to move in to their home near punch list time. This is tricky, because once you move in all punch list items move to warranty repairs. It never fails that clients find more things to touch up after they move in. This does not mean that the punch list items are never going to be completed, but it does mean that your home is acceptable to you to move in, thus creating the trigger for the final payment to be issued. For large construction loans the last payout may be 15-20 percent of the total transaction costs. As a builder I know how important that last payment is to myself and my subcontractors. If you want all of your items completed before moving into your custom built home, be patient. More importantly, avoid putting pressure on yourself for a schedule that requires you to move into your home too early.
In my opinion there are two different forms of warranty repairs immediate action items and maintenance items.
Immediate Action Items
These items would fall under the list that includes water damage, HVAC repairs, electrical repairs, or anything that does not allow your home to be safe and comfortable. The key here is we do not want you to put these items on the list and call us when your warranty maintenance items are to be scheduled. A small leak for example can be fixed with a quick turn of a wrench but if left alone it can turn into the repair of an expensive cabinet, hardwood flooring and worse yet it can cause mold. If you’re unsure if the repair is immediate or just a maintenance item feel free to contact us so we can explain the difference to you.
This is where your incomplete punch list items will fall. Things such as paint touchups, drywall flaws, loose doors, adjusted trim materials, and kitchen cabinet or door hardware. These items are going to be addressed on a one time basis. For our warranty maintenance repairs we give two different opportunities to repair these items. At 30 days we will reach out to you and ask if there’s anything that you would like to be addressed right away. We will again reach out and 90 days to see again if there’s any repair items you want us to address. You also have a one-year opportunity to address these items if you would like to wait till the very end. However, we will not address maintenance items more than one time. It is our advice to you to wait for paint and drywall repairs to be addressed. This gives you ample time to verify any nail or screw pops in the drywall and/or any flaws in the paint that need to be touched up. Past 90 days your warranty list should only be paint drywall and or major items that need to be immediately addressed. Please be aware that your one year warranty is not an additional opportunity to submit a punch list of maintenance items over the course of you living in the property and causing normal wear and tear.
Who Pays for Warranty Repairs?
With all of our projects we work with multiple suppliers and subcontractors. The warranty that you receive is provided by each individual subcontractor and supplier the touches your home. In addition you have what is inherently a blanket warranty from SG Home Builders. If for some reason one of our subcontractors cannot step up to the plate to repair the item in question we will be sure to bring in the appropriate contractor to make sure the work is done the right way. Much like your project management during construction the coordination and communication with subcontractors it’s also done by us at SG Home Builders. If there’s any issue with scheduling between our crew in the schedule that works for you we will make sure we communicate that with you to a sure repairs are taken care of.
It is always advised that you read your warranty paperwork to clarify any additional questions regarding your home warranty, and maintenance of items inside of your home and out.
If you would like to discuss building a custom home or remodeling your existing home, please email Ryan@SGHomeBuilders.com or call 847-602-7641.