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Old 11-28-2007, 01:11 PM
Location: San Antonio
790 posts, read 2,017,564 times
Reputation: 326
Question For those of you who have built your house from the ground up.....

how perfect was it by the time you closed on it? I mean, when you purchase a pre owned home, you expect to see nicks or scratches on the cabinets, etc. We are building and getting ready to close in a few weeks. Our cabinets have scratches here and there on most of them, including the bathroom cabinets. It looks like the will be just "repairing them" vs replacing them. Is that normal? I guess since we are building a new home, I expected everything to be perfect and replaced if it is not.
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Old 11-28-2007, 01:17 PM
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We pushed the builder to have everything done before we would close. We had them fix tiles that were not grouted right, re-paint walls that did not look good, etc. For the last few weeks we went everyday to see how they were progressing to make sure there would be nothing to left to chance. We also kept a journal of all requests that we made and then checked them off as they were fixed.

Are the cabinets painted or stained? Me personally, I would not accept scratches on the cabinets.....they should be pristine for your walk thru.
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Old 11-28-2007, 02:19 PM
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I would not close until every thing is just how you like it as long as you do not need into the house immediately. The builders goal is to close the house and get it off of the books, so they'll do anything they can to do so. Once closed, their interest in warranty repairs is minimal (to say the least) since their only incentive is customer satisfaction versus dollars and cents.

If you do have time constraints (lease up, etc...), you do have some legal recourse with the builder in getting them to cover additional rent, etc... since the delay in closing is a result of their negligence.

Hope that helps...
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Old 11-28-2007, 03:58 PM
116 posts, read 311,076 times
Reputation: 47
Default Pretty Close

We built from the ground up and by the time we closed I'd say we were close to perfect, at least we thought so at the time. Of course after you move in you may notice oddities here and there. We have a 1 year warranty for the first year that covers pretty much everything. We've had them come out a few times to touch things up and they've always done it w/o question or hesitation.
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Old 11-28-2007, 04:05 PM
Location: San Antonio
4,048 posts, read 6,041,946 times
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You'll walk through the house with the builder to do a "final punch". This is where they'll mark everything with blue tape that you find wrong with the home. Be a stickler about it. Point out EVERYTHING. When you walk through the house, you'll probably be doing it with a warranty person. The warranty guy wants to fix EVERYTHING for you because up until closing, it's the construction department's problem. After you close, everything is a warranty department problem. He doesn't want to have to deal with it, so they'll make sure everything gets done.

There will be a lot of things that will be repaired and not replaced, because on most things, a proper repair will look just as good as a brand new item. It won't make a difference at all. If there are things that NEED to be replaced, make them do it.

They need you to be happy with the home and they need you to close. You hold the cards at this point.
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Old 11-28-2007, 04:34 PM
Location: San Antonio
790 posts, read 2,017,564 times
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Thank you for your responses. We do have a time constraint. Our relocation coverage takes us just a few days after our closing time. They have been really good about addressing the issues that we have brought up, not that they all have been fixed yet, but they said they will do it. It is getting close to closing, and it doesn't look like it will be done in time. My friend told me that I would be amazed on how much they can finish up in just a few days. I do have emails saved from them with their statements of what they agreed to do. Brand new scratched cabinets really bother me though. If it was maybe just one little scratch total, it would not be a big deal. I am trying to get the builder to walk through the house with me tomorrow or so, so I can point out my concerns. He already told me to get some tape and start taping the stuff to get a head start on fixing things. That should be a good sign from him as far as him wanting to get things done, right?
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Old 11-28-2007, 09:18 PM
Location: Stone Oak
299 posts, read 597,680 times
Reputation: 152
I hired an inspector to go through my house before the final walkthrough with the supervisor and he was very picky. I was a tad hesistant to show my construction supervisor the big list, but he sat down with me for hours, went over the list, identified which items were actual problems and he mapped out a plan for fixing most of the items. There was not enough time to fix all the issues before closing, but my construction supervisor told me it would not be a problem to fix items after closing and they delivered as promised. They have a form for specifying what items need to be fixed soon after closing.

Don't be afraid to point out issues that are probably acceptable, but you are not fully comfortable with. For example, about 6 doors in my light-colored kitchen cabinets had a slightly darker wood streak or faint knot that I couldn't stop focusing on. I asked the supervisor if there is anything that could be done about it and he called the cabinet company and had them replaced.
You won't get frowned upon by your builder for being picky, it fact it probably won't cost them much to fix your items. As I understand, the builders subcontract most of the work and if one of them didn't do a good job they'll bring them back to fix it without having to pay them. I got this from one contractor who came to do a repair.

Don't worry if you missed something, just keep adding to your list throughout the year and your builder will fix it at the 11 month warranty walkthrough. I recommend getting an inspector for that phase also.
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