Who Takes the Hit on the Punchlist?
After spending 25 years as a commercial paint contractor here in New Orleans and the surrounding Louisiana Gulf Coast area, I can tell you that anything can happen on a jobsite on any given day. From wet walls in the French Quarter, Chinese drywall in Harahan, to black mold in Metairie, at TASCH Painting Company, we’ve pretty much seen it all.
Regardless of the concern, at some point somebody is bound to say, “Well, that’s the painter’s problem!” Actually, it’s everyone’s problem. In today’s blog post, I’d like to discuss that touchy subject – “Touch Ups vs Repairs – Who Takes the Hit on the Punchlist?”
Beating the Clock (and the Paint Job)
As a project gets closer to completion, the stakeholders are all starting to feel the pressure. The architect has issued the punchlist –time is of the essence! Money and manpower have been dedicated to painting that new commercial project in the growing New Orleans business district,and it really looks terrific. But this is the end of the project and there may be a scramble for all trades to finish their work, and all at the same time!
The construction schedule has been pushed to the limit and there are now no less than 50 tradesmen moving in and out of your brand new building, trying to knock out the punch list and get paid. Ladders, carts, furniture, signage, ceiling tiles, carpet squares, restroom accessories –they’re all being hauled into the space and every trade is on deck. Then it starts to happen; the freshly-coated walls, doors and frames start showing scuffs, scars, jabs, pokes, scrapesand nicks. The Krewe of Tradesmen have left a serious mess after the parade is over.
No Easy Fix
The painting contractor used a High Volume Low Pressure (HVLP) paint delivery system. HVLP not only efficiently applies the paint, but it creates a finish on doors and hollow metal frames that looks like a shiny new Porsche. Touching up the hollow metal doors and frames after they’ve been damaged is tricky and time consuming. It will be nearly impossible to match the sheen and uniformity achieved by the HVLP paint system. Touch-ups with a paint brush will make that perfect Porsche finish look like a truck’s beat-up bedliner!
Houston, We Have a Problem
Well, you can’t un-bake a cake. Everyone is pointing fingers, the painting contractor is peeved –the work in place is damaged. The GC’s budget is spent and now the awkward question of who should pay for the“touch ups” is hanging in the air.
The painting contractor has billed against the work in place in its “undamaged” state. Now it’s been damaged by others (perhaps lots of others).The additional repairs and painting will have to be done after hoursto allow up coatings to dry properly. There’s a funky cake to be eaten, now it’s time to negotiate who has to take the biggest slice out of their profits.
Paint Insurance or Better Planning?
It seems reasonable that there should besome relief found in the Subcontract Agreement between the GC and painting subcontractor.After all, the painting contractor, like every other trade, is entitled to realize his or her intended profit.
“The AIA doesn’t have a schedule for a refundable damage deposit.” Says Architect Mike Piazza of Piazza Architecture Planning, APAC. “The key to preserving a great paint job is to schedule around your paint!”
The Solution is in the Schedule
“The timing of paint is a tricky step in the choreography of a project,” says Piazza. “Often, the General Contractor feels serious pressure to get the paint trade on site as soon as possible to ensure this critical element is completed on time. However, bringing the paint contractor in too early can have disastrous results.”
On poorly planned projects, the painter is often left holding the bag. “No reputable general contractor in the New Orleans area can expect a high-end craftsman to work overnight hours, free of charge,”Piazza added, “He might get a favor every now and then. But over time, quality craftsmen will start to avoid that GC like the plague.”
Have Questions About to Achieve a Perfect Paint Job?
A perfect paint job makes everyone look good. With the proper plan, the only cake you’ll be eating is a big old slice of King Cake.If you’ve got a project in the Greater New Orleans or Northshore area, give TASCH Painting Company a call. We’ll be happy to answer any question you may have about commercial painting projects, modern painting techniques, or challenging completion schedules.