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Tips on The Final Walk-Through at Your New Home

Often, people buying a house think that the final walk-through is time for some last-minute negotiating – it is not. Nor is it a closing contingency based on the results of the final inspection. It should take place between a few days to a few hours before closing. This way, if repairs or replacements were not completed as agreed upon the seller can give credits to the buyer at closing for the work that needs completing. The final walk through is the time to make sure that everything the seller has agreed to repair or replace has been and that nothing has gone wrong with the house since you last saw it. Following are the items that should be checked as near to closing as possible.

Home Exterior:

Roof Gutters and down-spouts
Stairs/Railing
Siding Porch/Deck Siding
Landscaping/lawn
Storm windows and screens

Home Interior:

Working Smoke/fire/carbon monixide Detectors
Water stains/leaks
Settlement/Cracks
Windows/Doors Fireplace
Screens are in place and not torn

Basement/Crawl Space/Garage:

Walls (Serious Cracks)
Water Penetration
Garage Door Operation

Kitchen:

Cabinetry/Counter – chips and cracks
Run Water Appliances Floors

Bathroom:

Check all plumbing fixtures
Check Drains for blockage and leaks
Floors

Electric System:

Operate Lights
Operate Fans
Check Outlets

Plumbing Systems:

Run water
Leaks and water stains
Pressure/Drainage
Operate Water Heater

Heating/Cooling System:

Run Systems

Have your real estate broker go with you on the final walk-through. This way if items that you and the seller agreed would be completed have not been finished your broker can contact the seller’s broker and have adjustments to the price made. Likewise, if something major comes to light, such as a new roof leak, your real estate broker can help in having the price adjusted to allow for repair or replacement.

The final walk-through is also a good time to make sure that the seller has provided you with appliance and other operating manuals such as for the sprinkler system, the garage door opener, the heating and cooling system and the water heater.