Why should I do a final walkthrough?

First off, a final walkthrough is when you and your agent go through the property shortly before you do final signing/close escrow to double check and make sure everything is as it was when the offer was submitted.

I recently heard a story that changed the way I will do business, and left me in a state of shock.  Special heads up to any potential buyers and sellers.

This particular property was a Short Sale, meaning any buyer would be dealing with an owner who owed more than the home’s fair market value, thus having to get the lender’s approval to sell for less than the loan amount (a long and painful process).

Anyways, the owners had vacated the home and now live out of state, leaving the home unoccupied while it was listed with their agent.  A Realtor friend of mine showed the house, and it had everything the buyers wanted, including appliances, so they submitted an offer.  The offer goes through, and a whopping 6 MONTHS LATER, the deal FINALLY closes!!  One thing though…where did the refrigerator, washer and dryer go that were there when the offer was written?

Turns out the listing agent, without the knowledge of the seller, found tenants to rent the home and was pocketing the monthly rent.  When the tenants were kicked out/left, they took the appliances with them.  Now this obviously presents a real sticky situation…one in which no one wants to get stuck.  I will have to ask my Realtor friend how the situation resolves, but I would hope the shady listing agent used some of those “rental payments” to purchase new appliances for the buyer, since it was their fault the appliances were taken.

TO THE SELLER: Too bad you had a bad agent listing your property=[  If this issue would have been noticed prior to close, you would have been in breach of contract, risking the loss of your buyer, and a potential FORECLOSURE!  This is a bad situation that I hope the seller did not see coming, and could not avoid with security services or someone watching over the property.

TO BUYERS: ALWAYS ask about a FINAL WALKTHROUGH when interviewing an agent/purchasing a property.  If your agent denies you one, or says it’s unnecessary, go with another real estate agent, or else you could end up in a situation like this!

contact me directly at 623-399-0804 or colin@phoenixpowersearch.com.  I would be glad to walk through any home with you.

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  1. Final Walkthroughs…to do, or not to do; that is NOT the question. « Colin C Stevens…Journey to “30 Under 30″ - June 15, 2009

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