Step 22: Doing the Final Walk-Through
Once you’ve received the Clear to Close, we’ll schedule the final walkthrough. This usually occurs the day before closing and is a chance for you to walk through the property and make sure it’s in the same condition as it was during the inspection. The walkthrough takes about 20 minutes and the seller’s agent usually attends in case any problems do come up. Please let me know what day and time would be best for your final walkthrough.
Here is what you should check at the final walkthrough:
- Verify that all repairs have been made. Be sure to obtain copies of paid receipts and any related warranties in advance of the walkthrough
- Make sure all of the appliances are still working
- Check to make sure the sellers didn’t damage anything moving out
- Look to make sure all items included in the sales price (lighting fixtures, blinds, curtains, etc.) are still there. This includes anything that was attached to the wall previously such as shelves, TV mounts, etc. unless noted as being excluded from the contract
- Screens and storm windows are in place or stored somewhere
- Test the intercom, doorbell, alarm, HVAC, and hot water to make sure they all work
- The property should is in “broom clean” condition meaning it doesn’t have to be perfectly clean, but you have to be able to clear out any debris with a broom
- Ask when the trash is picked up, where the parking is, where the storage unit is, etc.
- Get the garage door opener (if applicable) and any other remotes
- Locate any instruction books and warranties for appliances and fixtures
- Make sure all personal items of the seller and all debris have been removed including clothing, food in the fridge, etc.
Here is what the final walk through IS NOT:
- It’s not a time to have your parents, friends, etc. come look at the property or for contractors to give you estimates, etc. All of that can wait until the next day once you officially own the property.
- It’s not possible to begin moving boxes or other items into the property at the walkthrough. That has to wait until you officially close on the property.
- It’s not when we receive the keys. That will happen at the end of closing.
At the end of the walkthrough, we need to inquire as to how you will get the keys, any fobs, and the mailbox key. Usually these items are left in a kitchen drawer. However, if you are in a doorman building, I verify whether the doorman will have the keys and whether he or she will be able to give them to you after the closing or whether you will need to present a written form.
What happens if you find damage at the walkthrough or the seller didn’t do one of the repairs he was supposed to do?
You have three options if you discover damage at the walkthrough or the seller didn’t repair something he/she was legally obligated to repair:
1. You can delay closing by a few days/weeks and ask the sellers to repair whatever items are damaged
2. You can ask the sellers to put money into escrow to cover the cost of the repairs so you can still close on time
3. You can ask the sellers to provide a credit to cover the cost of the repairs so you can still close on time but have the funds to pay for the needed repairs after closing
If the sellers are not willing to do any of the above you can cancel the contract and walk away from purchasing the property. That rarely happens though and is the last option if we’ve exhausted all other options.
Please let me know if you have any questions regarding the final walkthrough. We’re almost there!