What I'm Seeing Now

head_left_image

Discovery Of Footprints In The Hardwood Flooring Finish Coat

Not much more saddening in new construction could be the discovery of footprints in the hardwood flooring finish coat.

Silly and disconcerting.  Uncaring and disappointing.  Unbelievable and dishonorable.

DISPLAYING THIS AS THE "REVEAL" TO BUYERS SHOULD EMBARRASS ANY BUILDER.  BUT IT APPARENTLY DOES NOT.

In chapter 18 of Daniel Defoe's classic novel Robinson Crusoe, the cast away is walking on the beach one day and frightened when he runs across a single footprint in the sand.

He is astonished and runs to his "castle" to think it over.  At first thinking it is the devil, he at last decides that was the  footprint of another man.

In this new construction I was very disappointed to see so many scuffs and scrapes in the hardwood flooring finish.

But then, to get to the staircase to see footprints on every single stair from the entry hall to the upper level I was, like Robinson Crusoe, astonished!

That is not drywall powder easily cleaned off!  That is imprinted in the poly coating!  There is a similar, permanent mark in every stair from bottom to top!

The word "unacceptable" doesn't even apply here!  I can think of a lot of words that do though.

And confessing to having seen a lot of schmuck work, this was a first for me!  A footprint in EVERY stair!  Thoroughly disgusting.

Well, we have to give this crew a nod for consistency.

Somewhat hard to see as it was raining, I found  footprints in the concrete driveway outside.  This is one of many traipsing from one side to the other.

It didn't photograph well, but is framed in yellow, and amazingly the same size as the one indoors!

No, no we can't walk around.  We have to walk through the curing concrete.

This is a sad, sad state of affairs we are having to deal with in this area.  The Golden Rule is dead.

The lack of professionalism of the people who are now  "working" on "building" houses is alarming.  And around here we are demonstrably inundated with this mess 'o mess.

Does di-di-di, dah-dah-dah, di-di-di mean anything to you?

That is Morse Code for S-O-S.  We should all be sending out that cry for help.  From my perspective things are getting worse and worse, and the decline seems to be accelerating in speed.

My recommendation:  there may be times when you have a final walk through of a new house to see things that are truly astonishing.  Buyers should not settle for this!  Hiring a home inspector is truly a great idea, and a Best Practice, but really, if everyone was doing what everyone is supposed to be doing would a home inspector even be necessary?  I for one am glad that I AM necessary to the process, if only to give a nod to great work.  But alas, that does not happen.  And I am left, like Robinson Crusoe, to retreat to my castle to contemplate our society's lot.  And fear for the future.

 

Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC  

Based in Bristow, serving all of Northern Virginia.

Office (703) 330-6388   Cell (703) 585-7560

www.jaymarinspect.com


Comment balloon 53 commentsJay Markanich • April 23 2014 01:50AM

Comments

Good morning Jay. Some folks must leave their brains locked in the glove box of their pick-em-up twuck! They open the box in the event they have to use them...

Posted by TeamCHI - Complete Home Inspections, Inc., Home Inspectons - Nashville, TN area - 615.661.029 (Complete Home Inspections, Inc.) about 4 years ago

I am incredulous, Michael, and continue to be.  This will never get old.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) about 4 years ago

Wow, that is really poor workmanship.  The good news is that if it's under the poly, but hasn't scratched through the color, they should be able to solve with a screen and recoat.

But, it really makes you wonder.  They should have known better.

Posted by Debbie Gartner, The Flooring Girl & Blog Stylist -Dynamo Marketers (The Flooring Girl) about 4 years ago

It's into the poly Debbie, but there are other scratches here and there, some visible in this photo.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) about 4 years ago

I know I sound like a broken record but "where is the construction supervisor"??

 

Posted by Lenn Harley, Real Estate Broker - Virginia & Maryland (Lenn Harley, Homefinders.com, MD & VA Homes and Real Estate) about 4 years ago

This is the house that has had many posts about it Lenn!  I can answer that, but it would require a photo of the Burger King nearby...

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) about 4 years ago

All I can say is ewwww....what makes that contractor/builder/work person think that ANYONE would find that acceptable ?  

Posted by Sally K. & David L. Hanson, WI Realtors - Luxury - Divorce (EXP Realty 414-525-0563) about 4 years ago

Unbelievable doesn't even come close to this fiasco.  Sad sad thing Jay. 

Posted by James Dray, Exceptional Agents, Outstanding Results (Fathom Realty AR LLC) about 4 years ago

Me no know S&D.  Me no know.  What makes a "professional" think they can walk on wet polyeurathane?

This is James.  And we are in for more and more of it.  The barn door is still open.

 

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) about 4 years ago

I figured this was the same house.  Poorly finished hardwood flooring is, sadly, routine in luxury custom builds.

Posted by Lenn Harley, Real Estate Broker - Virginia & Maryland (Lenn Harley, Homefinders.com, MD & VA Homes and Real Estate) about 4 years ago

This is what happened when I checked the overflow in the bath tub above the kitchen...

What can I say?

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) about 4 years ago

Oh wow, you'd think whoever was putting the poly down would've made sure the floor was ready first.  And that light bulb!  ghaaa!

Posted by Kat Palmiotti, The House Kat (Grand Lux Realty, 914-419-0270, kat@thehousekat.com) about 4 years ago

The poly was down Kat, and still wet when the Wondrous One walked on it...

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) about 4 years ago

Hi Jay,

And the Quality control Supervisor was where? Out to lunch? Crazy.

Simple things like this drive us insane.

Have a good day in Bristow.

Best, Clint McKie

ps, when did the irc codes stop allowing for lights above showers? i got a 1960 home with two of them.

Posted by Clint Mckie, Desert Sun Home, Comm. Inspection 1-575-706-5586 (Desert Sun Home, commercial Inspections) about 4 years ago

Hi Jay. With these obvious things being so blatantly skipped over, one can only imagine what hidden & ready to spring forth in the future. Certainly makes the case for multiple inspections during the construction process.
Thanks for sharing.
Bruce

 

Posted by Bruce Kunz, REALTOR®, Brick & Howell NJ Homes for Sale (C21 Solid Gold Realty, Brick, NJ, 732-920-2100) about 4 years ago

Good morning Jay,

'Cutting corner's" to save a nickel!

Make yourself a great day.

Posted by Raymond E. Camp, Licensed Real Estate Salesperson Greater Rochester (Howard Hanna Real Estate Services) about 4 years ago

Jay, what happened to quality control? It sounds like let's see if the buyer says something, then we will fix it.

Posted by Michael Setunsky, Your Commercial Real Estate Link to Northern VA about 4 years ago

You could almost understand if there was one step the finisher or culprit stepped on and then backed off. But to keep walking and making it worse. Special place for creeps like this and I don't want to go there.  

Posted by Scott Seaton Jr. Bourbonnais Kankakee IL Home Inspector, The Home Inspector With a Heart! (SLS Home Inspections-Bradley Bourbonnais Kankakee Manteno) about 4 years ago

I once saw workman wearing little plastic booties on their shoes and didn't give much thought until later and then respect kicked in...As to Crusoe, Daniel Dafoes creation based on a true story, I have read it several times and am on the last chapter now...That footprint shook him up badly as you say and the devil walking barefoot anywhere is not very welcomed...lol

Posted by Richie Alan Naggar, agent & author (people first...then business Ran Right Realty ) about 4 years ago

That was probably some worker told to go over and make sure the house was all picked up and neat. Now the buyer can tell the builder they need to refinish or re-install all the floors and steps

Posted by Ed Silva, Central CT Real Estate Broker Serving all equally (RE/MAX Professionals, CT 203-206-0754 ) about 4 years ago

Jay, I'll say almost the same thing I said on Lenn's post: IMHO, it's a lack of pride in workmanship. It's endemic and getting worse!

Posted by Tom White, Franklin Homes Realty LLC, Franklin TN (Franklin Homes Realty LLC (615) 495-0752 or www.FranklinHomesRealty.com) about 4 years ago

Once again I agree that nobody should buy a home in your area,

Posted by Richard Weisser, Richard Weisser Retired Real Estate Professional (Richard Weisser Realty) about 4 years ago

Well--if you're going for that Sasquatch design, then it might work...

Posted by Rick Phillips, I care about you and your transaction. (Frankly Realty - Old Town) about 4 years ago

Well, that is just not acceptable and something should be done before they move in.

Looks like after the first footprint, the person would have walked out instead of making marks all over the steps too!  Just careless and thoughtless!

Thanks for sharing!  

Posted by Graziella Bruner, Associate Broker - Serving Wayne & Oakland County (NCS Premier Real Estate) about 4 years ago

Makes me wonder if it was a neighbor kid and nosy neighbor. Barefoot through the concrete...that is what really makes me think it wasn't a worker.

But the builder should have fixed the flooring for sure.

 

Posted by Than Maynard, Broker - Licensed to List & Sell - 405-990-8862 (Coldwell Banker Heart of Oklahoma) about 4 years ago

Ouch! That would be a bummer for the buyers.  Your post reminds of when I was a child and my grandma got new flooring installed and I accidently stepped on it when the coating wasn't dry --- and well, my footprint was on it.  Grandma wasn't too happy about it!!

Posted by Rosie Moore (Serving Sugar Land, Richmond, Rosenberg, Missouri City) about 4 years ago

Now, that's upsetting - the very last thing you want to see is footprints in the freshly polyurethaned wood floor.

Posted by Jill Sackler, LI South Shore Real Estate - Broker Associate (Charles Rutenberg Realty Inc. 516-575-7500) about 4 years ago

This was new construction?  I actually came by looking for Free Enterprise Tuesday.  Have you finally been beaten down the the Obama Machine?

Posted by Gene Riemenschneider, Turning Houses into Homes (Home Point Real Estate) about 4 years ago

Jay this is astonishing, hopefully the buyers send a message to the builder that this is unacceptable.

Posted by Bob Crane, Forestland Experts! 715-204-9671 (Woodland Management Service / Woodland Real Estate, Keller Williams fox cities) about 4 years ago

what becomes a concern with stuff like this is this is what you see and they didn't fix it. What don't you see that they messed up

Posted by Charlie Ragonesi, Homes - Big Canoe, Jasper, North Georgia Pros (AllMountainRealty.com) about 4 years ago

That is the big question Clint!  And if I knew when every code changed everywhere I would be amazing!  I would look at NEC though, not IRC.

I did a pre-drywall inspection Bruce.  There was a lot then too!

That's it in a nutshell Raymond.  Doesn't work for me either.

You might not be far off with that one Mike.  I had a roofer the other day say he was waiting for my report to know what he needed to finish.  What??

All the way up Scott!  Not a mistake.  He had important things to do.

 

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) about 4 years ago

Jay, I met with a client this morning for coffee. We discussed how no one seems to do their jobs any more and no one seems to care. Those who are doing their jobs are having to hold up the many who are not. Yes, it is a mess. I too fear for the future.

Posted by Kathleen Daniels, San Jose Homes for Sale-Probate & Trust Specialist (KD Realty - 408.972.1822) about 4 years ago

Richie - the boots would not have helped in wet poly.  And yes, Robinson was really frightened!   As am I for our country's future.

Ed - I was told it was the "plumber" who had to do something that afternoon.  If you can't get to it, you can't get to it.

Yes it is Tom.  Why care?  It's someone else's house.

They can if an inspector is on the job Richard.  But that can be hit or miss!

All that and more Graziella.  I am still incredulous.

 

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) about 4 years ago

I doubt it Than.  The last three houses at the end of a street, and the houses are 100 yards apart.  No kids around.

But Rosie - you were a child and you did not walk all the way across the room!

Yes, Jill.  I agree and was truly saddened.  This stuff is getting worse and worse.

Brand new, final walk through Gene!  And I will never be beaten down.

Hopefully?  They had a very good list when we were finished Bob!

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) about 4 years ago

Truly put Charlie.  We did a pre-drywall inspection and had a huge list then.  Hopefully it was all rectified.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) about 4 years ago

In MBA school they called that the Pareto Principle, Kathleen.  It's the old 80/20 rule and it applies.  80% of the sales are done by 20% of the sales force, etc.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) about 4 years ago

That mistake is going to cost a builder some time and money.  And then there is the concrete...

Posted by Evelyn Johnston, The People You Know, Like and Trust! (Friends & Neighbors Real Estate) about 4 years ago

Guess somebody wasn't paying attention. That is a shame but easily fixable. Guess the floor guy gets to go back.

Posted by Bill Reddington, Destin Florida Real Estate (Re/max Southern Realty) about 4 years ago

If this is the quality of the floor finishing, I'd be concerned about the workmanship on the rest of the house.

Posted by Alan May, Helping you find your way home. (Coldwell Banker Residential) about 4 years ago

Jay- how in the world could anyone present this as their work.  I would be ashamed to call it "done.

Posted by Kathy Streib, Home Stager - Palm Beach County,FL -561-914-6224 (Room Service Home Staging) about 4 years ago

Evelyn - these aren't the only problems!  But awful ones to be sure.

He does Bill, but hopefully a professional one this time.  The wood work was awful in the house.

And you would be right to be Alan!  This is one of many posts about this house!

I would too Kathy.  But not around here these days.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) about 4 years ago
Yikes I just walked a new construction home today and the hardwoods were all covered in heavy paper and taped with blue painters tape to assure no scuff marks. This can be fixed and the good news it is not the buyers home until they take delivery so make the builder fix it. Disappointing yes and don't be so sure it was the contractors I have seen this happen when someone looking at the community decided to walk through without telling the builder ( yes people do it all the time) they were there. They have no idea they may cost heartache for the buyer of the home or the builder by walking on recently stained floors. It happens more than you can imagine....!
Posted by Patty Blackwelder, Top Producing Realtor-New Home Buyer Specialist (Twins Selling Real Estate) about 4 years ago

The "plumber" did this one Patty, as he had something very important to do upstairs that simply could not wait!

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) about 4 years ago

Jay, thanks for sharing.  How disappointing for the buyers of this home.  Attention to detail missing here.  What happened to the pride of quality work?

Posted by Alicia Utz, REALTOR & Military Relocation Professional in NOVA (EXIT Realty Associates) about 4 years ago

Jay, That is that pre-stressed flooring. It actually cost more.

Posted by Donald Hester, NCW Home Inspections, LLC (NCW Home Inspections, LLC) about 4 years ago

I'm afraid you're right. Quality is going downhill because companies are looking for larger profits and pay less and they get what they pay for. I hope the buyer demands these be fixed, or walks. I agree, every new construction home should be inspected by a qualified and experienced home inspector, like you, Jay!

Posted by Pamela Seley, Residential Real Estate Agent serving SW RivCo CA (West Coast Realty Division) about 4 years ago

That's a great catch. 10 to 1 most people would have thought it was just dust that would wipe off. I would have; and that's why inspections are so valuable.

Posted by Chris Griffith, Bonita Springs Listing Agent (Downing-Frye Realty, Bonita Springs, FL) about 4 years ago

Alicia - this is the final walk through and the "reveal!"  What can I say?

And a pre-stressed home inspector Don, such that I didn't explode in laughter, curl in a fetal position and hold my belly.

Thanks Pamela.  My sarcastic word for this is 7-11 Construction.  And it is.  And we are going down.  And I am stressed over it, a bit pre-stressed as I was saying 15 years ago that this is where we would be going.  Builders have to wise up.  Once a client asked me back three times to look at something the builder said was "fixed."  It wasn't and I kept saying so, even including photos and links to how it should have been done.  Knowing I was correct the builder began trashing me, and only saying what the client wanted me to say.  I simply said, "Here is how the industry says it should be done and here is how you are doing it.  Are all this extra time and trips making you money here?"

The builder in this post, and in a few recently about this same house, is well known and national.  Get real.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) about 4 years ago

Chris - oh no.  I felt it to see!  Usually I lick stuff like that, but this time, in front of others, I decided to just touch it.

 

Okay, I may be playing a bit with that comment...

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) about 4 years ago

Wow that would go straight the head of my punch list.

Posted by Jeff Jensen (The Federal Savings Bank/Lending in 50 states) about 4 years ago

It sure did Jeff.  This was huge in my opinion.  I don't know what they would do about the driveway, but indoors it has to be done.  I think the driveway should be done too.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) about 4 years ago

I have seen finished hardwood floors that have bugs stick in the finished due to opening the windows while the finishing was setting up. 

Posted by Richard Burge Realty/ Burge Homes, Broker in Charge/Owner (Richard Burge Realty/Burge Homes) about 4 years ago

Leaving windows open without screens is a wonderful example of thinking in action Richard!

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) about 4 years ago

This blog does not allow anonymous comments