So much leads up to the moment of closing but it's important not to let your guard down just yet. If your closing is scheduled for Friday, you might want to revisit your new home for a final walk-through a few days ahead of that closing. Read on and find out why this last visit before closing is so important for your peace of mind before you sign those papers.
What Might You Find?
Even with tight closing timelines, several weeks could have passed since you or anyone else visited the empty house. However, you might also be dealing with sellers who were still occupying the home until recently. A final visit to the home will reveal any last-minute issues that could affect your ability to move into the home on time after the closing. For example, if vandals broke into the home and spray-painted the walls, you will want to have that cleaned up before the closing.
Issues that can arise with empty homes include:
- Water damage from leaks. Both the source and the resulting damage must be addressed.
- Pest infestations not present during the inspection could cause issues. For example, a family of raccoons might have taken residence in your attic while no one was looking.
- Recent damage like broken windows (birds can fly into windows, for example) and more.
If the home has been occupied by the seller, check these:
- Make sure that they did not take something that should have stayed with the home. What stays varies from state to state but, usually, items more or less permanently attached to the home are known as fixtures and are conveyed with the home. Be sure you understand the status of appliances, window treatments, hot tubs, closet systems, and more.
- Along those same lines, check the home for any damage that might have occurred as the seller moved out. For example, make sure that a careless mover didn't damage your walls when removing a large screen television from it.
- It should be broom-swept. This term is used to describe a home that is clean but not necessarily sparkling clean. The home should be trash-free with surfaces wiped down, carpets vacuumed, and floors swept. The lawn should be mowed in the summer.
Finally, check to make sure that all agreed-upon repairs have been completed. If a home inspection revealed a large and expensive issue with your home and the seller agrees to fix it before you took ownership of it, verify that the fix occurred. If extensive repairs were necessary, consider having another home inspection performed several weeks before the closing. They can be costly but could save you from later expensive repairs that the seller should have taken care of.
For home buyers hoping to schedule a final visit to your house before the closing, speak to a real estate company near you.