The Final Walk-Through Prior To Closing

Real Estate Agent with RE/MAX Elite 513.520.5305 SAL.2002007747

The Final Walk-Through Prior To Closing

When you buy a Cincinnati area home, per the contract you're entitled to a last look at the home prior to closing.  Basically 24-48 hours prior to closing we'll schedule an appointment with the sellers for one last look prior to completing the sale.Cincinnati area patio homes

What's the purpose of the final walk-through?

Basically to verify a few of things:

  • That the items that were agreed to be repaired, were actually repaired in an effective and professional manner.
  • That the house is in the expected condition.  Items that the contract says were to convey SHOULD still be there.  The appliances are the same (or better) than the ones there during the showing.  That the rose bush out front isn't now a big hole in the ground.  The pool equipment is still present.  Now the couch is moved that there's not a huge stain or hole in the carpet. 
  • And lastly, that the sellers are actually moved (or moving) out!  It may be a mad scramble on their part, but if the contract calls for occupancy at closing and they're nowhere near packed and out the day before closing, we just MIGHT have an issue!

In a perfect world, the home is empty and it's easy to see if the movers knocked a hole in the drywall and that the home is reasonably clean.

If you're lucky, maybe they've mowed the lawn recently and we've even had a pair of our sellers go so far as to have the carpets professionally cleaned after they've moved out.  Now that's a class act you normally won't encounter!

So what happens if something isn't right?  We've still got a little time to get things right.  Maybe the movers accidentally packed something.  Maybe the sellers can provide a repair/replacement credit for something that isn't per the contract.  Maybe a contractor can still get the LAST item fixed that was agreed to.

Bottom line, if something isn't right, it can be a hectic scramble to make sure you're not left holding the bag after you sign the papers at closing.

More questions about buying or selling a home?  Call us at 513-520-5305 or email The Liz Spear Team of RE/MAX Elite at  We look forward to hearing from you!

Serving Warren County area home buyers and sellers,

Liz and Bill aka BLiz

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Serving Warren County Ohio & Adjacent Areas


The Liz Spear Team of RE/MAX Elite
Elizabeth Spear, ABR, CRS, Ohio License SAL.2002007747

William (Bill) Spear, CRS, Ohio License SAL.2004011109  Kentucky 77938
Ask for us by name if you visit the office!

EHO Two locations: Lebanon & Mason, OH
Bill Direct:  513-520-5305
Liz Direct: 513-265-3004     
Fax: 866-302-8418


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Jackie Hillen
Melson Realty - Porterville, CA
Tulare County ~ (559) 999-8088

It's amazing how many agents simply don't do a final walk until after the COE... not a good idea!

Apr 29, 2015 12:20 PM #1
Larry Johnston
Broker, Friends & Neighbors Real Estate and Elkhart County Subdivisions, LLC - Elkhart, IN
Broker,Friends & Neighbors Real Estate, Elkhart,IN

Hi Liz and Bill Spear ,  I had a final walkthrough today, but the lockbox had already been removed and the Sellers agent didn't do it.

Apr 29, 2015 12:30 PM #2
Ed Silva
RE/MAX Professionals, CT 203-206-0754 - Waterbury, CT
Central CT Real Estate Broker Serving all equally

I have had clients that did not want to do the walk through and yet when I go on my own find issues that we get resolved and the buyers learn about it at the closing.  Very important

Apr 29, 2015 12:32 PM #3
Rose Mary Justice
Synergy Realty Pros - Dandridge, TN
Synergy Realty Pros

It can be a problem that no one wants to face.  Turn on the stove, the lights, the heat and air, fans, etc. check it out. Check out those repairs, take a list with you and make sure that all things are fixed.  Once it is closed it is too late to complain. The seller is done.  The complaints will come to the agent to deal with.

Apr 29, 2015 12:36 PM #4
Frank Rubi
Frank Rubi Real Estate, LLC - Metairie, LA

Final walk through is always a good idea. I have found mirrors missing and no utilities to check AC repairs were complete. 

Apr 29, 2015 12:50 PM #5
TeamCHI - Complete Home Inspections, Inc.
Complete Home Inspections, Inc. - Brentwood, TN
Home Inspectons - Nashville, TN area - 615.661.029

Good morning BLiz. A lot can happen to a property between the time the home inspection was done and the final walk-through.

Apr 29, 2015 06:50 PM #6
Dorie Dillard CRS GRI ABR
Coldwell Banker United Realtors® ~ 512.750.6899 - Austin, TX
Serving Buyers & Sellers in NW Austin Real Estate

Good morning BLIZ,

I encourage my sellers to go the extra mile..all repairs completed a week before closing with receipts provided to me so I can email to buyers agent. If they want to do a re-inspect on those items they have time. Home cleaned (preferably professionally) and left ready for the buyers to do a walk through and be happy with the home they are purchasing! It's a large investment and in today's market the seller is walking away with a handsome profit.... doesn't hurt to leave it in excellent move in condition including yard mowed the week of closing.

Apr 29, 2015 10:02 PM #7
Lenn Harley
Lenn Harley,, MD & VA Homes and Real Estate - Leesburg, VA
Real Estate Broker - Virginia & Maryland

So important to the transaction, yet so often neglected by the listing agent.

The solution for a home that isn't ready for the final walk-through is cash in lieu of.

That's a great motivator for sellers.

Apr 29, 2015 10:56 PM #8
Sheila Anderson
Referral Group Incorporated - East Brunswick, NJ
The Real Estate Whisperer Who Listens 732-715-1133

Good morning Liz and Bill. Walk throughs are really important. In NJ it is tough to get in before "the day" but even then things can be worked on if done early enough.

Apr 30, 2015 12:31 AM #9
Liz and Bill Spear
RE/MAX Elite 513.520.5305 - Mason, OH
RE/MAX Elite Warren County OH (Cincinnati/Dayton)

Jackie, And if I have the seller I'm not going to prompt the buyer to do one.

Larry, Had one yesterday and it was gone, but the sellers were home packing so no issue.

Ed, Every now and then we have a buyer that wants to skip it, but most want to take a last look.

Rose Mary, Hopefully everything behaves.  We've had the ice maker on the refrigerator start acting up the day of closing.  Murphy's Law!

Frank, The missing things are the toughest, especially if the contract was clear it was supposed to stay.

Michael, A few weeks gap typically, hopefully nothing bad happened, but it can.

Dorie, We always appreciate sellers going the extra mile to make sure the home is clean for the buyers.  Nothing like a microwave with what looks like exploded tomato soup inside to sour a new buyer's intro to their new home.

Lenn, Haven't met too many sellers who want to give up cash, so a good motivation to get it all done.

Sheila, Our contract has allowances built it for access, so just a matter of coordinating schedules.


Apr 30, 2015 02:39 AM #10
Tammy Lankford,
Lane Realty Eatonton, GA Lake Sinclair, Milledgeville, 706-485-9668 - Eatonton, GA
Broker GA Lake Sinclair/Eatonton/Milledgeville

I remember last year when one of my agents called me and said when she arrived to do the walk through the sellers were on their deck having a beer and had NOT packed one thing.  They had told their agent they would need a week after closing to move and her reply to them had been "we'll worry about working that out at closing".  Yeah, talk about a scramble.

Apr 30, 2015 08:05 AM #11
Liz and Bill Spear
RE/MAX Elite 513.520.5305 - Mason, OH
RE/MAX Elite Warren County OH (Cincinnati/Dayton)

Tammy, that's a shake your head moment.  What agent thinks something as significant as move out date (which is ALREADY in the contract) can just be verbally arranged at the closing table???  wow........

Apr 30, 2015 11:39 AM #12
Michael Jacobs
Pasadena, CA
Los Angeles Pasadena 818.516.4393

Hi Liz and Bill -- this is an important part of a real estate transaction and unfortunately it isn't always treated as such.  The default in our contract is five days prior to closing to verify the condition of the property - not as a contingency although there are many surprises that can surface.  

Fun times indeed. 

Apr 30, 2015 06:17 PM #13
Roger D. Mucci
Shaken...with a Twist 216.633.2092 - Euclid, OH
Lets shake things up at your home today!

In the inimitable words of Mickey....."Don't wait until the last minute".....and that relates to anything and everything.

May 01, 2015 04:12 AM #14
Claude Labbe
Real Living | At Home - Washington, DC
Realty for Your Busy Life

Sometimes, I walk to the final walkthrough hoping for no surprises.  When there is a surprise, it's usually not good.

A few months ago, we walked in to find out the seller's movers hadn't showed, and so, there was a small glitch in that all their belongings were still in the home. 

The options you suggest...yes, those occur, and are more problematic than a seller moving out on Friday rather than Thursday.

When I see buyer agents not do these walk throughs, I just wonder "really?".

May 01, 2015 04:38 AM #15
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