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5 Things to Do Before and After Closing

Tuesday, July 26, 2022   /   by Laura Larson

5 Things to Do Before and After Closing

You've been looking for a home for weeks, months, or even years. Several offers, property disclosures, inspections, and reports have been made to you. The search for a home is finally over after all the anticipation, anxiety, and stress. The story isn't over yet, though. Before you move in, take into account the following next steps.

Plan renovations well in advance
An apartment that is ready for a buyer to move into is uncommon. When you sign a contract, you already have a lot of ideas for how you'll use the house, how you'll personalize it, and what repairs need to be made. Don't wait until you've shut down to hire a pro if the place requires work. Get the right contractors in the home and begin gathering quotes for the required work, either at your final walkthrough or during a private appointment. If at all feasible, have any minor repairs like painting or floor sanding completed before you move in. Since real estate brokers interact with a variety of tradespeople, they are frequently a wonderful source for recommendations.

Set up the utilities
When someone enters a building, some people believe the utilities will be on. You can't always assume this will be the case, even though many utility companies allow grace periods (the days between when the seller terminates service and the new owner calls). If you had an out-of-town seller, they might have terminated services the moment they learned that all conditions had been met. The grace period has most certainly already passed in this situation, and you may now be left dealing with the electric provider, waiting for an appointment, or merely being without power when you really want to start painting, fixing, or cleaning. The best strategy is to phone the utility companies well in advance of closing to arrange service. If they haven’t received a cancellation notice from the seller, let the seller know to take care of that.

Change the locks
Assume that everybody is in possession of a set of keys to your new house. At some time during the listing period, the seller's real estate agent most certainly distributed copies to their assistant, a painter, a stager, or perhaps another agent. Because of this, the locksmith should be the first person you contact after receiving the keys.

Hire a cleaning crew
Nothing is worse than arriving at a property with the movers, numerous boxes, and your personal items only to find that the seller neglected to get it cleaned. Prepare for the worst and send in a cleaning crew as soon as the deal closes. Even if the seller did clean, their work could not have been up to par. You want to make a fresh start at your new home. The basic structure of the property will be spotless, and you won't have to rush to schedule cleaning services when the house is a mess from unpacking boxes.

Have a handyperson, contractor, or designer on call
Moving entails tasks you wouldn't want to give to your worst enemy. You might go mad trying to arrange the enormous carpeting in the master bedroom, center the couch in the living room, or line up your framed art. Spending a few hundred dollars to hire someone to assist you with these duties may seem like a luxury, but it will save you time and possibly spare you from a major hassle.

Thinking ahead is the way to go
As your closing date draws near, you’re probably exhausted. But taking a little extra time to plan ahead will save you time, money, and stress — and make the move into your new home so much more satisfying.