Punch List Do’s and Don’ts for Builders

A punch list for new construction. Blueprints and hard hat in background

As a builder, you do everything you can to fulfill your contractual obligations. You follow codes, commit to quality, and cover your homes with a structural warranty from 2-10 Home Buyers Warranty (2-10 HBW), the industry leader in structural warranty administration, covering 1 in 5 new homes in the US. But as you reach the end of construction, what should you include in your punch list?

What Is a Punch List, and What Should It Include?

A punch list is a document prepared near the end of a construction project that lists issues in the home that don’t conform to the contract. Contractors must then complete the work before final payment.

Here’s what you need to know about creating a punch list to ensure the work is done properly.

Do: Identify Repairs

Typically, any item that needs repairing will be marked with blue painter’s tape. Take a roll of tape with you as you complete your final walkthrough and place a strip of blue tape on any items that need attention.

These repairs can range from things like cracked tile and painting imperfections to more serious issues, like inadequate drainage away from the home’s foundation.

Don’t: Get Too Nitpicky

What exactly constitutes a “nitpicky” repair request is up to interpretation. However, something like a recessed nail head might not be worth including on your punch list.

Fortunately, a 2-10 HBW Structural Warranty offers clear performance standards for workmanship, which can help you set expectations with your clients.

abstract business background of construction site with tower cranes and overlay with project schedule chart and gantt chart indicating a timeline

Do: Establish a Timeline

Major problems should be fixed before closing, and minor issues might get a more lenient timeline. Work together with your buyer to set a timeline that suits everyone’s schedules. You may even want to get this agreement in writing to ensure smooth sailing.

You Build it, We'll back you up.

Learn why 1 in 5 new homes nationwide are covered by a 2-10 HBW Structural Warranty.

Don’t: Rush Your Fixes

While you’ll do your best to complete punch list items timely, it’s important not to rush or set unrealistic expectations. Clear communication and expectation setting will ensure your client’s ongoing happiness with their new home.

A White man with brown beard and white hardhat and gray zip-up jacket standing in front of the construction framing of a house

Final Considerations Regarding a New Home Punch List

Be sure to stay in touch with your buyers throughout the process. You can’t address concerns you aren’t aware of. And remember: Communicate clearly, stay calm, and be polite, even if you’re frustrated.

And for post-closing customer support, consider 2-10 HBW’s Front Line Warranty Service. Few things are more important than a high-quality customer experience post-closing. 2-10 HBW can help you offer exceptional service that bolsters your reputation.

You Build it, We'll back you up.

Learn why 1 in 5 new homes nationwide are covered by a 2-10 HBW Structural Warranty.