10 Things to Watch For in a Final Walk-Through When Buying
You're getting down to the wire on buying a house. Most documents have been signed, appraisals and inspections are completed, and now it's time for the final walk-through. This is an essential part of the home buying process. Buyers need to take one final look at the house before closing. If anything is wrong or if the house is been trashed or items have not been repaired as per the inspection report or contract, you won't want to sign until those things are done. Here are 10 of the most common issues homebuyers find in the final walk-through and something you should be aware of.
#1. If the house isn't empty.
Depending on the rules of the contract, most of the house should be packed up or sellers should at least have most things moved out. If they left behind a can of paint or a bag of trash, that's not the end of the world but if it looks like they've left everything for you to clean up or they haven't even started on moving out, it is something to question with their agent.
#2. The house is trashed.
This isn't an inconspicuous issue. It's pretty clear if the house has been trashed. Sellers are legally required to leave the house pretty much as you found it when you first walk through except for the removal of items. If the house has been damaged or trashed in the meantime, it's something to address with the sellers before closing.
#3. Repairs have not been completed.
If the sellers have agreed to repair or replace items negotiated in the inspection report and those items have not been completed, you won't want to sign the final documents until they've done so. Take a look at the inspection report and everything that was negotiated to be completed. If anything is not done, your agent needs to go to their agent and address these issues right away.
#4. Any negotiated personal property that is now missing.
If you, the buyer, have agreed with the seller to keep some personal item in the home such as a bookcase, lighting fixtures or something not attached to the house and now it's missing, this is where you need to not sign the final paperwork until the item is returned.
#5. The curb appeal is trashed.
If sellers have left a junk or junker cars in the driveway, neglected the landscaping horribly, or left tons of trash for you to dispose of, your agent will need to go back to the seller and have these things corrected before final signing.
#6. No utilities.
In most situations, utilities should be on throughout the final walk-through. If utilities have been shut off, it could be a breach of contract. Before freaking out though, talk with the agent and see if dates got mixed up or if it is easy to turn the utilities back on or to transfer them in your name immediately after closing.
#7. Major damage to the inside of the house.
If the seller has damaged the home in removing items such as a TV off of the wall, curtain rods, or moving in and out appliances, they will need to repair the damage.
#8. Heating and cooling systems don't work.
Make sure to test both the heating and cooling systems of the home during the final walk-through.
#9. Nonworking appliances.
Everything should be as it was when you first toured the home, which means that appliances that are included in the purchase should be in good working order unless they were negotiated in the contract.
#10. Working outlets.
If all the outlets were working during the home inspection and tested they still should be in good working order. Testing all the outlets as you do the final walk-through is just another area of precaution so that if something is wrong you won't have to pay to repair it once you move in.
We want our buyers to be well informed when purchasing a home and we don't want you to have any form of buyers remorse. If you see something, say something to your agent and don't hesitate to question if something doesn't seem quite right.
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We'd love to help you buy or sell a home in Columbus Ohio in the new year so feel free to contact our office or browse our website for new listings every day and information on how to prepare and sell your Columbus home.