Different expectations apply when inspecting new construction. The property has no history and no performance of components to be evaluated. There three approaches to consider:
- progress inspections during the construction process
- punch list for the builder prior to taking possession
- punch list prior to expiration of the builder’s warranty
Progress inspections during construction confirm and expand upon the municipal inspector’s work. Their inspection is required for the next draw from the lender and should assure the owner that the work has been properly performed. Unfortunately, in 30+ years of business, we have seen that this is not always the case. A third-party inspection with no conflict of interest can be a wise investment.
A punch list prior to taking possession may motivate the builder to tidy up loose ends such as making sure doors and windows operate smoothly, marks and scratches on finished surfaces have been repaired, appliances were properly installed, etc. To date, Michigan Property Inspection has provided punch lists with as many as 50 items!
A punch list prior to expiration of the warranty can also work in the owner’s favor, especially when provided by a licensed builder who is also an experienced, credentialed inspector.