Real estate transactions are full of ups and downs. There is the excitement and energy of the home search, the nervous anticipation of submitting your offer, the joy at hearing your offer has been accepted. And then comes the home inspection, when you realize your perfect home isn’t perfect in every respect. There is the back and forth of the purchase and sale agreement negotiations and the anxious wait to hear if your loan has been approved. And then comes what you think will be the high point—the final walk-through, that last look at the home before it become officially yours. Standing at the threshold of this momentous event, many buyers are surprised to find themselves experiencing a surprising emotion: disappointment.
The walk-through is designed to ensure that nothing in the home has changed since you first offered to purchase it, and to confirm that the previous owners/tenants have indeed moved out completely. In order to do this effectively, the home must, of course, be empty. And that’s where disappointment can sneak up on you.
First, your new home probably looks a little smaller without the seller’s furniture in it. This is a sort of optical illusion that happens with vacant properties. And even if the seller has had the property professionally cleaned, it’s possible, now that the paintings and wall decorations have been removed, that the paint job looks a little tired. The cleaner may have missed a couple of dust bunnies in the corner of the master closet or perhaps you hadn’t noticed previously how worn the wood floors were in the dining room. It’s perfectly normal for your sparkling new home to look a little sad, tired and lived-in when you see it at this stage of the transaction. And even a freshly painted and spotlessly clean home will look a lot less inviting without furniture, or the humanizing effect of photos and other personal possessions.
Don’t despair. Once you have touched up the paint, maybe put a fresh coat on the floors, and, certainly, once you have moved in all your own comfortable and familiar furniture and decorations, your new home will look the exactly the way you had dreamed about.