A final walk-through is an inspection performed a few days or a few hours on a home before the future owners close on the property. The purpose of a walk-through is to ensure that the home is still in the same condition as agreed upon, that any repairs were done and that nothing is wrong with the property since it was looked at last. It is important for buyers in Illinois to remember that the walk-through is not a home inspection and is not a time to negotiate repairs with the seller.
The importance of this final inspection
After the official property inspection is over and the closing day approaches, purchasers may be tempted to forgo completing a final walk-through because they are pressed for time. However, it is extremely important for buyers to do a walk-through before closing on a home to ensure nothing is wrong with the property.
For example, after deciding to buy their first home, a husband and wife had a home inspection done on the property they wanted to buy. After the inspection was completed, the inspector concluded that the home was in overall good condition. During the final walk-through, the wife pressed the flushing mechanism on the toilet in the master bathroom and water starting shooting from the ground in the backyard. It was discovered then that the sewer line had tree roots growing into it. Since the closing date was still a few days away, the couple had enough time to withhold the amount the repair would cost from the seller’s proceeds.
What to do during a walk-through
When buying a home, there are several things purchasers should pay particular attention to. These include the following:
- Make sure that everything included in the sale, like light fixtures and curtains, are still there
- Double check that all of the appliances, like the heating and cooling systems and fridge, are still working
- Remember the small things, like whether or not the doorbell still works and if a password for a security system needs to be retrieved from the seller
- Determine if any repair requests included in the contract were completed and ask for bills that prove the work was actually done
If there are any issues with the home during the final walk-through, purchasers should delay the closing date until these problems are resolved. In this situation, purchasers may benefit from working with an attorney who can ensure all of the contingencies included in the purchase contract are upheld by the seller and that the closing goes smoothly.