When polishing and buffing new wood flooring is included in the flooring contract, the homebuilder should schedule this activity just before the homebuyer walkthrough.

Two things are important here.

First, the polishing of the wood floors should be scheduled after the unit is final cleaned.  Polishing the wood floors should be the last activity before the walkthrough.

Second, the final cleaning crew must be instructed to lightly vacuum the wood floors only…without any cleaning or wet mopping.  This allows the flooring contractor to use the correct cleaning substance and the proper technique…recommended by the wood flooring manufacturer…for cleaning, polishing, and buffing.

In production tract housing and condominiums…this approach removes any debate that the final cleaning crew used the wrong cleaning solution or method…and is therefore responsible for a dull finish or blotchy spots on the new wood floor surface.

If the flooring contractor is entirely responsible for the installation and polishing of prefinished or other types of wood flooring, any problems with the finish can be directed to the manufacturer’s representative, who will come out to the project and inspect the flooring.  If it is determined that the flooring is defective, the manufacturer will cover the cost of replacing the defective material or pay for the cost of refinishing the flooring in-place.

The builder should have the wood floors polished just before the walkthroughs so that flooring can be in perfect condition for inspection and acceptance by the homebuyer.  This practice has the homebuyer accepting the appearance and finish of the flooring…before being given the opportunity after move-in to use the wrong cleaning solutions or methods…and thus damage the flooring finish.

If either the final cleaning crew…or the new homeowner…is given the opportunity to clean the wood flooring and mistakenly uses the wrong cleaning substance or technique…the builder can be in the middle of a four-way conflict between the cleanup contractor, the flooring contractor, the flooring manufacturer’s field representative, and the new homebuyer.