Wednesday, June 27, 2012

It's like Christmas in June!

I feel like tomorrow is Christmas morning.  I am so giddy and excited, I don’t know if I will be able to sleep tonight!

Tomorrow, we will be conducting the Pre-Delivery Inspection (PDI) of our new home.  Yes!  That means our unit is complete and I will finally be able to see how the small tile/cabinet/granite/hard wood samples look like in real-life size.  I will admit I have been very caught up in the aesthetics portion of PDI – you know, checking to see if everything matches correctly, feeling up my new granite counters, looking out our 8th floor window at the view.  Luckily Derek, on the other hand, has thought about the other less glamorous to-does such as checking out the plumbing and electrical.  Equally as important as beautiful cabinets now that I think about it.

Derek’s the man, and printed off a few different documents he found on the internet when searching “new home inspection checklist”.  Our lovely real estate agent, Kim, also sent us a document to refer to.  I then took the time to go through the information and amalgamate and eliminate information.  Much of the exterior portion of the checklist does not relate to us since we have not purchased a house, but there are separate things to know about condos. 

Here are some tips I found to be helpful:

  • Don’t be scared or nervous, and that my developer’s representative should be very helpful.  I should also be nice and try to make friends with the rep. 
  • Don’t worry about rushing through the inspection.  It helps to make an early appointment so that you are not the last one of the day, with a rep who is itching to finish work.
  • Be thorough.  Open every cabinet, turn on every faucet, check every window, etc.  If something is movable, it is most likely able to be installed incorrectly.
  • Don’t hire a home inspector for a new condo.  This surprised me, but apparently they are trained to locate problems in older homes and not inspect new builds.
  • Consider bringing someone with you, just because it’s helpful to have another set of eyes.
  • Read through the Purchase Agreement before the PDI.  This way you will have the list of all the finishes, features and upgrades you chose to ensure you are getting what you paid for.
  • If you miss something within 30 days of possession, you can always go through TARION.  But, apparently you want to stay clear of having to deal with TARION since it is not an easy process, and it is better to deal directly with the developer.

With this in mind, we made an 8AM appointment and are bringing along my cousin Dean who is a real estate agent.  

Meaghan and Derek's PDI Checklist

Electrical and Appliances

  • Outlets: check they work by plugging in a phone charger
  • Light sockets: bring along a light bulb to screw into all empty sockets to ensure they work
  • Appliances: Turn them all on (oven, stove, microwave, dish washer, washing machine and dryer) and request the instruction booklets and individual warranties for all appliances.
  • Fridge: does it maintain a cold temperature and shut down automatically with the thermostat is lowered
  • Ask if our unit has its own electrical circuit.  If so, locate the fuse box  and review the functions of each breaker/fuse
  • Inspect the furnace and air-conditioning unit
  • Heat registers should not be covered by carpeting and should not be located below a thermostat
  • Check out the location of cold air return(s) and ensure they are free of obstruction

  • Run all the faucets to check for pressure, water temperature and ensure the sinks and tub drain quickly
  • Toilets: flush them to check for water pressure
  • Run the water and the flush toilet at the same time to see if there is a temperature change
  • Faucets and shower heads should be caulked
  • Locate the shut-off valves for the plumbing system

Doors and Windows
  • Doors: open and close all of them to ensure the doors are well-fitted and evenly joined around the frame.  The locks should not rattle when the door is closed and the doors should clear the carpets, if any.
  • Windows: open and close all of them ensure they lock and close properly and feel for drafts
  • Check that the caulking is complete around all the windows and doors where the frame meets the wall

Bathroom and Kitchen
  • Turn on the fans to ensure they run properly.  Locate where they vent on the exterior of the building if possible
  • Check the caulking around the tub, toilet and tiles is complete
  • Check the tub,  and sinks for scratches and cracks
  • Cupboards and drawers: ensure they all open and close smoothly and are without scratches and dents
  • Counters: the counters shouldn't be damaged or scratched.  Check for smooth edges and make sure to get low and look underneath any overhangs

Flooring, Walls and Ceilings
  • Tile and wood floors: check for chips and cracks in the tile.  Look for large gaps or spaces between the wood floors and that the edges are seamless
  • Carpet: check for fraying, exposed areas and stains.  Make sure the door clears any carpeted areas.  The carpet should be tight without and lumps or bumps
  • There should only be minimal squeaks and spring when walking on the floor
  • Ceilings and walls: check for obvious defects such as gouges, cracks and dents

  • Check the flooring for cracks
  • Railings should be secure and without chips or cracks anywhere

Other areas to consider
  • parking space
  • storage locker
  • bike room
  • pool
  • gym
  • change room
  • party room 
As I look at this list, it seems a little over the top, but when I think about how much money we are paying for our home I really want it to be as perfect as possible.  Many of the items on this checklist will be obvious, but I am glad we have it for those things I didn't think of (flushing the toilet while having the water running, for example!)

I plan on taking LOTS of pictures tomorrow morning which I will most definitely share.  Along with anything I learn from our experience.  I am crossing my fingers we don't run into a huge disaster like the wrong cabinets or shag carpet in the bathroom or something.  Either way, I will keep you posted.

Wish us luck!

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