Who will prepare the punch list?

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    Sean Engle

    I just passed CE last week after failing it once. 

    The summary you outlined stated "The contractor prepares a list of items to be completed or corrected following substantial completion, and the architect verifies and amends this list. If the architect finds that the work is substantially complete, the form is prepared for acceptance by the contractor and the owner, and the list of items to be completed or corrected is attached."

    G704 itself actually mentions "a list" but says nothing about who prepares it.  So, from there fall back to the AHPP, Sec 10.10, p.730: "The punch list, required from the contractor in the AIA owner-contractor agreements, is a list..." 

    This statement is used because in reality, how the contracts are cut is what really drives things.  For the exam however, NCARB has to start with a set of assumptions in order to standardize the answers (a reasonable approach). So, for the purposes of this set of exams, you should choose the responses which reflect the use of AIA documents only (aka: The Contractor prepares, the architect adds to...).  

    In reality, I've had a $48m multifamily project where the owners (national developers) prepared the punch list themselves and then slugged it out with the GC -- all because of the way the contracts were cut.  For these exams however, we follow the AIA-based contract path - as stated above.

    //sse

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    Sanaz Ghahani

    Hi Sean,

     

    Congrats on your pass! Can you list the items you studies and found as most important topics for this exam? I know there are several links indicating that, but would like to get some more fresh inputs on this. Thank you!

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    Jinliang Chen

    Hi Sean,

    Real world is so different sometimes. Thank you so much for this comprehensive answer! Very clear.

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    Jinliang Chen

    Hi Sanaz,

    Since I just got a likely pass this afternoon so I will share my personal experience. I did PcM a while back and passed PjM two weeks ago.

    I spent 1hr 35 min on the first part - much slower than my performance on PjM. Then I spent 15 mins to check the questions, reduced flags questions from 15 to 5. Rest of the time was fully dedicated to Case Studies till the last sec - just to give you an idea about my exam this afternoon.

    The reason for being slow was due to the unfamiliarity of the construction questions that the PjM rarely covers. And I only spent 1 night skimming "Fundamentals of Building Construction". For Case Studies, the information overload led to information anxiety. And it took some time for me to figure out which sources were really the one I need to look into. I wasted time there. You should be familiar with how to read spec book along with other material you can think of that might show up, including construction drawing set.

    I spent my first 1.5 week studying the new contracts for CE – those bid and G series stuff. I could only study 2.5 hrs a day because of work. Then I routed back to WEARE and Ballast questions (for mock exams) and summarized AHPP in the last 3 days. Don't forget the ARE hand book and think about how the mock exams questions and all your study materials relate to it.

    I listened archicorner every day for the last two weeks while driving so I can remember those code (egress) and ADA concepts and (maybe) numbers without looking at books until the last morning. I had the feeling to fail this time at the beginning and fought against this idea in my head through the whole exam. I guess I got lucky.

    And I do hope archicorner can get 1 million subscribers ASAP. Hope this will help and you can pass very soon.

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    Sanaz Ghahani

    Thank you, Jinliang. 

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    Sean Engle
     
    Sanaz GhahaniFriday at 18:27
    Hi Sean,

    Congrats on your pass! Can you list the items you studies and found as most important topics for this exam? I know there are several links indicating that, but would like to get some more fresh inputs on this. Thank you!

    Pretty much the same stuff you'll see recommended elsewhere on this board:

    - Wall Sections; weep holes, flashing, mastic and other assembly drainage issues.
    - Bond Types
    - Bid Requirements
    - Scheduling - Barr/Gantt Charts, Milestones, CPM, Wall Schedules
    - CD Wiley Charts for material to review
    - Building Construction Illustrated (Ch 3, 7)
     
    - All Contracts (but especially the A101, A201, A305, A701, B101, C401, G702, G704, G710, G711, G714, G716).  Basically you should know ALL these documents and their relationships; from the primary ones above to the lesser known ones.  I'll put an image of those currently in my library - but the contracts are in ALL exams - and every job you'll do in the future - so you might as well learn them all.  Go to the AIA site and download the free sample versions HERE.  I also made up flashcards for all of these...and add to it as I pull down new docs.  
     
    - Specifications; at least the 16 prime divisions (flash cards)
    - HVAC Systems - distributions and calculations for CFM per spaces (know where to look for what) 
    - Schedule and delivery/storage of materials: When is best, where stored and why.
    - Liability for GC, Owner and Arch in various circumstances (make a grid)
    - Storefront v. Curtainwall - know the difference (see the cited text - excellent book)
    - Calc in SF - savings in cheaper materials substituted/value/specs application, etc
    - Bidding - what if bid is over budget, all other possible outcomes if... (make a grid)
    - Bid Bonds - scenarios; what would the proper response be if...  (make a grid)
    - Bid Schedule of Contractors - how to read, who to choose, and why.  Scenarios if... (make a grid)
    - Responsibilities of Architects on site; scenarios and proper response if... (make a grid)
    - Responsibilities of Architects at all phases, but esp. post CDs...
    - Bid security - all scenarios
    - Performance Bonds - all scenarios
    - Behavior of GC; ethics and where they would cross AIA ethics.
    - Multi Prime GCs - who gets charged for what in various circumstances.
    - Substitutions of materials; how, when, why
     
    What I used:  AHPP; Gronozik (Mechanical & Electrical Equip for Bldgs); Herrmann (Law for Architects); Gang Chen (CE Mock Exam, recommend); Hyperfine (CE, recommend); Tryware Quizzes (CE, recommend); Project Resource Manual (CSI); ADA in Details; Exterior Building Enclosures (Boswell, highly recommend); PPI Practice Exam; Black Spectacles (yawn, good for 30,000 ft view); Schiff Hardin Lectures - all of them (repeatedly, while resting and folding laundry, etc).  
     
    I've also done CA on large complex multifamily projects ($48 and $62m) for five years, and while that was helpful, in the end it's best use came as a contrast to the issues on the exam.  I know how we did things; however the CE exam and study "filled in my mental map" for the other side - that which I was missing before (explained a number of things), and made me think more critically.  
     
    I've been pretty hard on NCARB in the past, but I think I'm starting to see a pattern on these tests: They assume you know this stuff cold - and then put you though a mental obstacle course (including the useless white board and tiny double scrolling windows for the case studies - which so bad it has to be intentional) to see how much of it is actually stuck in your brain.  So, for example in contracts - if you know them cold - then when you see a long, twisted, backed up question - and you know contracts cold, you can knock it off with often the most simple response - the rest of it is noise to confuse you if you don't know your material or are iffy on it.
     
    Anyhow - good luck to those of you pursuing the CE.  You'll get through it, and if not, then re-double your efforts and hit it harder and longer.  And pull down the contracts, listen to the lectures and learn.  Here is my library (as of tonight):

    //sse

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    Sean Engle

    Actually, I want to add one other thing.  Several days before this last exam, I watched an AIA podcast which outlined the contracts. See the General Library from the AIA on contracts HERE, or the specific video  I'm referencing (see it @ 8.26) HERE

    In that podcast, they actually mentioned the nomenclature of the numbering system the AIA uses, which I have NEVER seen before (not even in the contract summaries document cited above, although they touch on the lettering system).  The basis of the documents is this:

    Using the A201-2017 as the example, each segment means the following

    So starting with the first letter:

    • A: Owner/GC
    • B: Owner/Arch
    • C: Other Agmts
    • D: Misc
    • E: Exhibits
    • G: Contract Admin Forms

    The first number is the type of document it is:

    • 1: Prime Agmts
    • 2: Conditions/Scope
    • 3: Bonds/Qualifications
    • 4: Sub Agmts
    • 5: Guides
    • 6: (not addressed)
    • 7: Bids/Const
    • 8: Arch/Office

    The second number is the application within the contract:

    • 0/1/2: Conventional
    • 3: CMa or CMc
    • 4: Design Build
    • 5: Interiors
    • 6: Intl
    • 7: Program Mgmt
    • 8: (not addressed)
    • 9: IPD

    Third letter is the sequence/version of that document.  And of course, year is the year of issue.

    This very information is very important as it allows you to walk through the outline of a document, even if you don't know what it is.  Example G707A:  You know it's a contract admin form of some type, from either bids or construction and is part of the program management group.  You know that just from the number.  It's actually the form used to obtain permission from the surety to reduce or return some portion of the retainage.  Knowing this information provides you a map to help you make better guesses. 

    Frankly, my guess would be wondering why this explanation is NOT in the outline document, but that's gripe for another day...

    //sse

     

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    Sanaz Ghahani

    Sean, Thank you for a detailed response. 

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    Jinliang Chen

    Sean, this is awesome summary!

    The AIA Youtube account do have many good information, including some "Wow" summary. I also found the CSI Youtube account's contents very impressive, too. Your post here is the most comprehensive and detailed answer on how to prepare for the CE exam I've ever seen so far. Wish I saw it earlier. I hope you already posted similar post for other exams ; ). Your response worth a separate post!

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