What, if any, legal options do I have in getting the builder to complete the signed "After closing punch list"?

Asked by TGP0422, Nashville, TN Mon Aug 6, 2012

We recently purchased a new construction home in a very small development (a large lot was cleared and 4 homes were built on it). As our closing date was pushed back, a total of 4 times, our lease was up on our apartment and we decided to close on the house. We walked through the home and made a list of about 10 things that were missing and needed to be complete after closing. We signed it and builder signed it with a 2 week completion date.

That was 3 weeks ago and 3 out of the 10 have been completed not to mention the new issues that keep coming up with our new home The builder is a man of a 1000 excuses and we are fed up with him just lying to us. He will say he is coming over then never shows up. Says the electrician is coming and never does. We no longer have any faith in him completing our list.

We are also having issues getting our CC&Rs and Warranty info from them. I am thinking of finding legal help.

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Leanna McKee, Agent, Hendersonville, TN
Tue Aug 7, 2012
I would seek legal council to find out your options.
0 votes
Sharon Wayman, Agent, Nashville, TN
Mon Aug 6, 2012
All good answers
Seek legal representation asap
0 votes
Fred Cope, Agent, Goodlettsville, TN
Mon Aug 6, 2012
It is sad, but true, that you have made a common mistake. When you closed on the purchase of the home, did you (1) execute this agreement on the "side", or did you do so in the presence of the attorney and with the full knowledge of the lender?

REALTORS cannot give legal advice otber than suggest you seek legal advice.

If the lender was involved in the post-closing agreement, they would have instructed the closing agent to hold funds in escrow. The lender would give the builder a "drop-dead" date to finish; then hire the work done at the builder's expense.

I wonder how the builder would feel about a viral video of his professionalism. I would raise such a question in a frank conversation...

Quality builders cherish their good name, but jack-leg builders lack such. Start with talking to an attorney, and ask the lender for help.
0 votes
Thank you for your response. We made the list and signed it at the house before heading to the closing. While there the closing attorney typed up the list again and we signed it and she said she would get the builder to sign it and send us the copy.

3 weeks later we have yet to get the typed up copy with the builder's signature and then the closing attorney told us we need the seller's signature as well (who is on vacation). Funny she didn't tell us this when we signed it.

We still have the original signed paper but obviously the date of completion of the repairs on it has passed.

As far as I know the lender knows nothing of the list. I am in talks with my realtors closing attorney for advise.
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stephen stri…, Agent, Nashville, TN
Mon Aug 6, 2012
That would really depend on what was in the builder contract. I am assuming that there is a 1 year bumper to bumper. I have a buyer who is dealing with the same thing. She calls and doesn't get what she needs. Not being an attorney, I would suggest getting some legal help. Have him/her look over your contract ppwk etc. Builders can be difficult to manage sometimes.

Stephen Strickhausen
Web Reference:  http://www.SStrickhausen.com
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