February 24, 2024

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Using Surface Protection Products for Punch List Improvement: Ensuring Homeowner Satisfaction

A punch list – a short checklist of items that need to be completed, repaired, or replaced – is common in the construction and remodeling industries. It acts as a quick and easy reference to the status of the project and its state of readiness. Keeping punch list items to a minimum can improve customer satisfaction and prevent delays to home closures. Using temporary surface protection on installed finishes such as counter tops, cabinets, floors, door and door jambs has been shown to remarkably decrease punch list items. Preventing scratches and dents to surfaces goes a long way towards ensuring a short punch list. Homeowners may not see what is inside the walls during a walk through but they will certainly notice a huge scratch on their new floors, counter tops or cabinetry!

Contractors should not only invest in temporary surface protection but should also have their own internal punch list to address any items before the final client walk-through. The client should see and know that the contractor has used surface protection as it boosts home buyers’ overall satisfaction. Protected & installed finishes should have surface protection removed prior to the homeowner walk through but remain on the finishes late enough to protect the finish as long as possible during construction.

Contractor’s lists can also be used at almost every phase of the building process to help communicate issues with suppliers and trade partners regarding the quality and status of their work. Often times, builders will use temporary surface protection such as Protecta-Foam or floor protection specified in a subcontractor’s contract. Although the subcontractor may protect their work it is also the responsibility of the builders to ensure that other trades do not remove the protection or that the surface protection used is adequate for the job. Like those created during a final walk-through with a homebuyer, punch lists during construction ensure that the work and quality is first-rate. When a homeowner does notice and identify to the builder any items that need to be added to a punch list, the builder should explain the policies and procedures in place for taking care of everything on the punch list in a timely manner.

Most builders work to cross every item off the list prior to homeowner possession so that the closing process is hassle-free. Depending on the list, a builder may try to schedule the necessary labor to address every item on the same day, rather than over several days, out of respect for a new homeowner’s time and busy schedule. The use of temporary surface protection can help builders achieve a goal of a short list, and keep any needed repairs short and simple. Surface protection leads to short punch lists. A small punch list cuts down on the inevitable repair time and gets a satisfied homeowner in their new home as soon as possible.