Things to Look For When Doing A Final Walk-Through
A final walk-through is a time for buyers to inspect the property they’re buying one last time — to ensure that it is still in the same condition they agreed to buy it in. This includes making sure that any agreed-upon repairs were completed to your satisfaction, and nothing is missing from the home.
You typically perform the final walk-through on the same day that you close the transaction; however, some people choose to do it before this. Although you may have a lot to deal with, and closing day can be stressful, it is crucial that you do not skip the final walk-through. This is because once you sign all of the final sales documents, you are the legal owner of the property — including any unexpected issues.
Here is a guide to things you should look out for during the final walk-through
Leaks and Water Damage
During the final walk-through, it is essential to check all plumbing for leaks and surrounding areas for water damage — especially if the home is not occupied. Without the owners living in the property, small leaks can turn into big problems, so it’s crucial to check for things like damp patches on ceilings and leaky pipes under sinks. Remember – the final walk-through is not the same thing as a home inspection; it is only to check for new issues that may have arisen between the inspection and closing.
When you conduct the final walk-through, remember to turn on all lights and check that they’re working. It’s also a good idea to check other electrical appliances too, such as the microwave and oven. Be sure to make a note of all of the light fittings to be sure that none have been removed or changed without you being aware.
If repairs were negotiated after the inspection, it’s crucial that you check they were completed before closing. If they were not completed, it’s essential to bring this to your real estate agents attention immediately so that the issue can be addressed with the sellers. In some circumstances, it may be necessary for the sellers to credit you at closing for the amount of the repairs.
This may seem silly, but it is one of the most important parts of the final walk-through — flushing every toilet. If a toilet is blocked, or there is a blockage somewhere along the line, knowing will save you a lot of headaches before you sign the final closing documents. No one wants to move into their new home and not be able to use the bathroom.
Buyers often forget the garage during the final walkthrough, but it’s an integral part of the home that should not be overlooked. Ensure that the garage door is functioning correctly and the garage openers are operational. If there are electrical outlets in the garage, you should check they are working too.
If your new home has a pool, don’t forget to check it. In particular look at the water quality, it is clear or is it discolored? Is the pump working? Unclean swimming pools can be dangerous, so it’s vital that you check the water is safe to swim in before you or your children take a dip.
A final walk-through is an extremely important part of the home buying process. If you aren’t sure what to look for, or what to expect, speak to your real estate agent who will be able to advise you.