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Checklist for Your Final Walk-Through

It’s closing time on your new home. Your offer has been accepted and your financing has come through. You’ve probably had a home inspection conducted to make sure that the home is sound and that there are unlikely to be any hidden surprises. Just one final piece of business to take care of in order to protect your investment: the final walk-through.

Just why is the final walk-through important? Quite simply, it’s pretty much your last chance to identify any issues with the home that you would like remedied before closing. The walk-through should be scheduled sometime from a few days to a few hours before close of sale, and you should wait to conduct it until the seller has moved all belongings out of the house. Although many of the things that you will check for will also have been covered during the inspection, it’s a good idea just to make sure there aren’t any significant changes that might warrant concern.

Here’s a basic checklist that contains items that you will want to check over on your final walk-through:

Plumbing. Run the faucets in the kitchen and bathrooms as well as the exterior of house, weather permitting. Make sure everything works properly and there is adequate water pressure.

Electrical. Turn light switches and built-in fans on and off. Make sure the garbage disposal is running. You might even want to plug a device into a few key outlets to make sure that power is flowing properly. If you have an automatic garage door, make sure that it is working, too.

Temperature Control. Depending on the season, make sure the furnace, central air, or any portable air conditioning units included in the sale are functional. Check to make sure thermostats are working properly.

Appliances. Turn on the stove, oven, dishwasher, built-in microwave, and if applicable, washer, dryer, and refrigerator. Make sure that they are all in working order.

Safety. Make sure locks on all doors and windows are functional; you will likely wish to change locks once you move in. Also check that smoke detectors and carbon monoxide monitors are present and functional. If a carbon monoxide sensor is not included in the sale, you will want to install one as soon as you move in.

Damage. Check the entire property for signs of any damage that might have arisen since the inspection. You’ll want to be especially careful to look for damage to walls or floors that might have occurred when the previous owners were moving furnishings out of the house. If the weather has been nasty, make sure that the exterior or the house is still sound and there are no missing shingles or roof tiles, loose shutters or siding panels.

Keys. Make sure you have keys for all locks on the property, including outbuildings, sheds and the mailbox. Additionally, you’ll need a remote control for an automatic garage door; the code for the door can also be changed once you move in.

Documents. Ask that the seller provide you with manuals for appliances and household systems. If there are other documents that you would like to have, such as blueprints of renovations, ask for these as well. And just in case of future concerns or questions, make sure that the seller leaves a forwarding address or phone number.

Cleanliness. The prior owner may not be required to have the house cleaned professionally before leaving, but there shouldn’t be trash or belongings remaining on the property. All personal items should be removed from the premises so that they don’t become your responsibility.

Voila! You’ve checked the place over and everything looks to be in good shape. If there are any concerns, consult your real estate agent about how to best address them. It’s now time for you to take charge of your new home. Good luck with your move!

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Written by Lillian Montalto Realty Times Staff for Copyright © 2014 Realty Times All Rights Reserved.