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Pre-Settlement Inspection Checklist: What to Look For

December, 14th
Settled Team
Conveyancing Tips

Settlement day is the big finish line at the end of your journey to buy a property in Australia. It’s a day for kicking back, celebrating, and feeling proud of what you’ve achieved. 

But before you start relaxing, there’s an important step to tick off: your pre-settlement inspection. Let’s dive into what this is and the key things you should be looking out for.

What is a Pre-Settlement Inspection?

A pre-settlement inspection is your final walkthrough before you get the keys to your new place. It usually happens a week before the big settlement day.

This is your chance to check out everything in the house and make sure it’s just as you expected. 

If something’s not quite right, now’s the time to speak up, because after settlement, sorting out any issues will be all on you.

What to Look for in Your Pre-Settlement Inspection

  • Check for new damage or repairs needed
  • Test all included appliances
  • Verify door and window functionality
  • Inspect plumbing and electrical systems
  • Ensure smoke detectors work
  • Look over the garden and external areas
  • Confirm cleanliness and no rubbish left
  • Review special conditions from the contract

Checking Repairs: Are They Done Right?

Remember when you first walked through the house and spotted a few things that needed fixing? Maybe it was a wonky cupboard door or a window that didn’t close properly. Well, now’s the time to make sure all those little fixes you agreed on with the seller have been done. It’s all about making sure you get what you were promised.

Chattels and Fixtures: What Stays and What Goes?

You might’ve had a chat with the seller about what’s staying in the house and what they’ll be taking with them. This could be anything from the oven and air conditioners to the ceiling fans and even the pool pump. During your inspection, have a squiz around to make sure everything that’s supposed to stay is still there, and what’s meant to go is gone. 

Keep an Eye Out for New Damages

Since you last visited, things might have changed a bit. Perhaps the seller, while moving out, accidentally dented a wall or scuffed the floorboards. Or maybe something more serious happened, like a burst water pipe. Give the place a good once-over to ensure it’s in the nick you’re expecting.

Garbage and Leftovers

It’s not uncommon for sellers to accidentally leave a bit of rubbish behind. Have a look around the garden, the garage, and the house to make sure you’re not left with any unwanted souvenirs from the seller’s last hurrah in the house. You don’t want your first day in your new home to be all about cleaning up someone else’s mess.

Check Special Conditions

Your contract of sale might include special conditions or specific inclusions like a hot water system, smoke alarms, or even specific landscaping features. Use your pre-settlement inspection to tick these off. Make sure everything that was promised in the contract is there and in working order.

Utility Check: Power Points, Water Heaters, and More

It’s not just about how the place looks; it’s also about how it works. Test the light switches, power points, the air conditioning, and the heating. Run the taps to check the water pressure and hot water system. You want to make sure all these little things are working smoothly in your new home.

The Final Once-Over

Before you leave, take a moment for a final once-over. This is your last chance to ensure everything’s just as you expected. If something’s off, whether that’s a broken door handle, broken window etc, it’s better to catch it now than after you’ve got the keys.

Pre-Settlement Inspection Looks Different For Everyone

Remember, every home and every sale is different, so your pre-settlement inspection might be a bit unique too. If you’re ever in doubt or not sure what to look for, don’t hesitate to have a yarn with your conveyancer or real estate agent. They’re there to help, after all. So, go into your inspection with this checklist in hand, and make sure your new home is everything you’ve been dreaming of.

Enjoy a Smooth Settlement with Settled’s Expert Conveyancers

Ready to buy? Don’t go it alone! Let Settled’s team of expert conveyancers guide you through every step of the process. 

From navigating contracts to managing the settlement day intricacies, we’re here to ensure your house buying experience is seamless and stress-free. 

Whether it’s your first home or your next investment, our professionals have the expertise and dedication to make your dream a reality. 

Contact Settled today and start your journey with confidence.

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Pre-Settlement Inspection FAQs

What is the settlement period and how long does it typically last?

The settlement period is the time between signing the contract of sale and the settlement date when you officially become the new owner of the property. In Australia, this typically lasts 1 to 2 months, giving both parties enough time to organise finances, conduct inspections, and prepare for the transfer.

How is the settlement date determined?

The settlement date is typically agreed upon by both the buyer and the seller during the contract negotiation phase. It’s the day when the final payment is made, and ownership is officially transferred.

How can I ensure the property’s condition remains good until the settlement?

Regularly communicating with the seller and conducting a final inspection close to the settlement date can help ensure the property remains in good condition.

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