I always recommend my clients get the house inspected after it is built and before close of escrow. I have never had a client receive a "perfect" report. Just because it's new does not mean something can get slipped over. One house had a broken truss in the attic.
Better safe then sorry. Good luck.
Yes, a buyer should absolutely have an inspection done by an independent licensed inspector on new construction. Many issues that they will uncover will be warranty items the builder will/should be happy to address. If these are not caught while new, it's possible that some may not become apparent until after the builders warranty has expired and potential damage could result due to time.
Having an inspector make periodic checks during construction is not a common practice. If you are using a quality builder and local city or county inspectors are checking off the various phases such as foundation, framing, electrical, plumbing & heating you should be okay.
If you have doubts about the quality of your builder you should reconsider the purchase. Even if your home is inspected by an independent inspector at every phase of the process but your neighbors is not and multiple problems appear over time, your value will be affected.
â€œShould been put on the purchase contract for the buyer's protection?â€
I think an inspection contingency is a great idea; however, you will probably find the Builder less enthusiastic about such a contingency.
I also like the idea of having 3rd party property inspection as well. This is the cheapest insurance you will ever pay for; still, this may become a bit costly as the project moves through the stages of completion you mention. Once more, the Builder may have a different view. Nonetheless, given the dilution of "10-year Builder warranty" in 2002 via Builder led lobbying/legislative action (see link below for more details), I would push hard to have your own inspections done. If not allowed to your satisfaction I would walk away and buy an existing home where you have an inspection contingency.
You may find the following of interest as well:
"Why You Do Need a RealtorÂ® When Buying From a Builder"
A purchase agreement should always contain an inspection (due diligence) time period which should include, but would not be limited to; home inspection, title review, local and county disclosures, natural hazard disclosure, CCRs/HOA regulations etc. Just because it was not spelled out as a home inspection does not preclude the buyer from performing one. Now, if inspection was waived in the agreement that's another matter. This is never recommended. You will only have through the designated inspection period to complete respective inspections of the property so when you are in the escrow phase, it's paramount to understand your time periods.
Best of luck in the purchase of your new home!
I always urge buyers to have a professional inspection because it makes it easier to get punchlist items addressed before close of escrow