What Does Punch Out Mean in Construction?

February 28, 2024

At some point, every construction project comes to an end. And while you may be excited to see it in the rearview mirror, it’s important to ensure that all of the i’s are dotted and t’s crossed before project closeout. One of the most crucial steps in achieving successful project closeout is the creation and implementation of a punch list.

A punch list is a list of items that need to be addressed before a final walk through and the approval of a contractor’s retainage payment. It is often attached to a certificate of substantial completion. It is also referred to as a snag list, deficiency list or list of outstanding work.

While the punch list is usually compiled towards the end of a project, it’s best to start generating it at earlier project stages as a regular check-in on construction quality. Having a construction punch list in place will help you avoid last minute surprises and ensure that all projects are completed on time, to the expected standard, and on budget.

Punch lists are typically created by the general contractor, but they can be generated by any member of the project team. When a list is generated, it’s important for everyone involved to understand their roles in ensuring that all tasks on the punch list are addressed and resolved before a final walkthrough.

The name “punch list” is actually a play on words, as it is not to be confused with a time clock, where you literally punch in and out of work each day. The term is a nod to the fact that when a task on the list is finished, it’s been marked off with a marker.


Traffic Dave is on a mission to help traffic engineers, transportation planners, and other transportation professionals improve our world.
linkedin facebook pinterest youtube rss twitter instagram facebook-blank rss-blank linkedin-blank pinterest youtube twitter instagram