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July 17, 2019

Why you should do a final walkthrough when moving out

  • Move Management

Once your boxes, furniture and other items are out of your old house and loaded onto the truck by professional movers, you may want to keep the process going and start the trip to your new house. There's one last thing you check off your moving day to-do list, however: a final walkthrough that makes sure your old home is secure, free of damage and totally empty. Let's look at why it's important to do a final walkthrough, as well as how to conduct one efficiently without throwing off your moving day schedule.

A pair of moving boxes sitting on a hardwood floor.A final walkthrough helps you make sure you bring along all of your possessions and get as much of your security deposit back as possible.

Why is a final walkthrough important?

There are three major reasons why you should set aside a little time during the moving process for a last look at your old home:

  1. Making sure your bring everything with you. The last thing you want to do is leave behind an important box or other belongings, whether it's work clothes you'll need in the coming days or the cords and surge protectors for your electronics. Double checking that everything gets on the moving truck helps you avoid headaches and panic later on.
  2. Assessing the state of your home one last time. Minor wear and tear might not be a big problem, especially if you own your old home and have sold it. However, major damage that goes unnoticed during the moving process can cause complications, or at least a strongly negative reaction from the new owners. If you're moving out of a rental property, even minor concerns like forgetting to clean the oven or a scuff mark on the wall can cause you to lose part of your security deposit. If you can quickly resolve these issues, you can save money.
  3. Ensuring the property is safe in the interim. Your old house or apartment may sit empty for a period of time before the next owners or renters move in. You want to make sure that people who aren't supposed to be there, as well as animals and the elements, don't make their way inside.

How do I make my final walkthrough successful?

One of the most important things to keep in mind in the context of a walkthrough is giving yourself enough time on moving day to complete it in a thoughtful and thorough way. You'll have to make an individual judgment based on the size of your home, so take a few minutes to think it through and then block off the appropriate amount of time on your moving-day schedule. If you're worried about repairing last-minute damage, especially if you're a renter, consider keeping a toolbox, paint to match the colors of your walls and similar items on hand to complete repairs quickly. Renters may also want to consider requesting a move-out inspection that allows them to address any issues close to but before move-out day, as The Balance pointed out.

Make a plan for working through each of the rooms and spaces in your home, checking that the property is secure in terms of locked doors and windows, as well as making sure nothing is left behind. You should also keep an eye open for any major damage. Pay particular attention to hallways and door frames, where slight miscalculations can cause damage - sometimes without anyone noticing.

Of course, if you work with professional movers and packers, you can minimize your risk of damages as well as give yourself more time to handle important tasks like a final walkthrough. To learn more about how Atlas can assist you as you move on, get in touch with your local agent today.