Considerations for the walk through of your New Home

You’ve made that purchase and you’ve been advised that before closing you’ll need to walk through the house. What does that entail? Why does it matter?

First of all, Congratulations on the purchase of your new house; exciting times. Now, take a deep breath, and consider the following valuable information.
Walk Through A New Home
New Home Walk Thru

Considerations for the walk through of your New Home

Below is a list of tips for consideration as you prepare to complete your walk through. 

These tips are designed to help you get familiar with the house and to detail items for consideration that will help later. You’ll also want a professional inspector to review your house to mitigate purchase risk.

Tie it all together: Learn about your new house and educate yourself to review your insurance protection for that new purchase.

For your insurance review:

  1. Work with your insurance agent to provide detail about the purchase. You may have already sent some detail to your mortgage lender, if so, re-purpose that detail and forward it to your insurance agent. 
  2. Also send a copy of your last renewal for your car. Why? This is to review your coverage and limits. Scan the document or take a picture and email or text it.  This is important now that you are a homeowner. You may need to adjust your coverage as you have more at risk now that you own a home.

For your home walk through: 

Suggestion: Take photos as these can be used later for comparison. Include appliance model/serial numbers as these are handy to have a record of and for future use.

  • Main Water Shut Off- know it’s location; this is the whole house shut off. Also learn where the individual shut off valves are located. These are at the: refrigerator, sinks, laundry tub, laundry hook-ups and toilets. 
  • Furnace A/C evaporation drain. This is a line that goes from your furnace to a nearby drain that removes evaporation moisture from the air conditioning system. Make sure this line doesn’t get clogged. The line can be attached to a sink or laundry tub. Look for this close to the furnace.
  • Furnace filter, look at the direction of air flow and mark it with sharpie. That way, when you replace the filter, you know the direction. Note the size of filter. You’ll forget when you are at the store, so make a note of the size. You can buy these on line too.
  • Outside faucets. Remove hoses from these in cold weather. Also, there may be a shut off valve for these in the house. Locate these valves and close them. (Some faucets are frost-free units).
  • Electrical panel. Know where it is and make sure each breaker is labeled correctly.
  • Cable/Data configuration. It is helpful to label these lines and have a map. Sharpie marker the lines at the main box and to which rooms they feed.
  • Gas lines, like the water, know how to shut these off. Also, look at the lines to ensure there are no kinks or other issues. You gas supplier will have good safety tips, know these tips.
  • Visually inspect foundation-take photos of rooms, walls and slab. Good for comparison later.
  • Make sure there is dirt/rock against the foundation of the house. The material should be elevated at the house and slope downward as you move out. This allows for proper water run-off.
  • Drought conditions: When it is dry, as it often is in Iowa, make sure that the dirt/rock stays against the foundation. You don’t want a gap to form as water can pool against your foundation and cause “hydro-static” pressure. That condition will crack or move a foundation and cause water seepage. 
  • Gutters/downspouts. If you have them, check the water flow during a rain storm to be sure you have good water flow away from the house. Correct as needed. In Iowa, they sometimes only gutter part of the house. If so, consider getting gutters all the way around the house.
  • Sprinkler system- If you have one, get a map of the line locations. This is needed for later in case you need to repair or are digging for landscaping.
  • Learn how to set the programable thermostat. If you don’t have one, get one.
  • Get good washer hook up hoses. Don’t buy the plastic rubber ones. Get the braided type that shut off automatically if there is a leak. Why? Many water losses occur at the washer and these lines are under very high pressure. If they break, you’ll have a big flood.
  • Water heater- Drain it once a year. But if you forget then don’t ever drain it. That is because of sediment that can clog the drain line. Be consistent. Also, know how to set the temperature range so you don’t get burned.
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Financial products and Insurance are provided through partner carriers. See disclosures and product materials for specific features and benefits.  An agency relationship is not created by viewing or reading this blog. Examples of protection are not all-inclusive and policyholders should refer to their policies for full coverage details.  ©Smith-Kenyon Insurance Resources, LLC 2018