A recurring customer service call-back issue that can be prevented for new tract housing and condominium units that have sat empty for months as unsold inventory…is to replace the batteries in the smoke alarms during the final tune-up prep phase just prior to the homebuyer walkthrough. This is something that can be easily included in the other fine-tuning activities in preparation for the walkthrough.
In new housing construction, smoke alarms must be connected and energized by one of the electrical wiring circuits. Most brands of smoke alarms, however, also have a battery backup to energize them should the electrical wiring fail for some reason during a fire or natural disaster.
To ensure that the battery is operable…when the battery runs out of power…the smoke alarm chirps every few seconds to inform the homeowner that the battery needs replacing.
The problem in new tract housing and condominiums that have sat empty for months or longer as unsold inventory units…is that the batteries in their smoke alarms may be low…running out of power in the first few weeks of occupancy…resulting in a customer service call from the homebuyer not understanding the cause of this constant chirping coming from the smoke alarm on the ceiling.
Educating the new homebuyers during the walkthrough about smoke alarms…and installing new batteries if the units have sat empty for a considerable length of time…can prevent the time-consuming call-back for the builder’s customer service department…that actually belongs in the scope of homeowner maintenance.