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What has to stay with the house after I sell?

Thursday, February 07, 2019   /   by Matt Bergman

What has to stay with the house after I sell?

When selling your house there a times when decisions have to be made and its just clear cut with no second guessing, then there are other times when things aren't as clear and sometimes people get upset. What the seller is able to take from the house after they sell can get super tricky and is one of the most common things sellers and buyers get frustrated over. 

I will try to be as clear as possible in the very gray area.

Fixtures stay with the house after the sale. That is anything the is screwed in, nailed in, bolted in, glued in, installed, attached to the house, is considered a fixture. 

Examples of fixtures:

Chandelier
Cabinets
Shelving Units
Bookshelves that are attached to the wall
Ceiling Fans
Trees 
Bushes 

All of those are things a seller has to leave with the house when they sell their home.

Where things can get tricky is items like Tv's, Speakers, and sometimes Mirrors.

When a seller opens their house for showings, people come in and see the entertainment set up and fall in love with it. The Tv and Speakers look great and just really make the room. Then when they come to the house after closing they see that the seller took the Tv and Speakers. They get upset and this is when things get tricky. Technically Tv's and Speakers are personal property (meaning the sellers) and the mounting hardware is a fixture. The seller is required to leave any mounting hardware but are allowed to take the personal property. But it wasn't just mounted hardware when they saw the house, now things look weird with nothing on the walls and that's upsetting to them.  

Sometimes Mirrors are hung up like a picture, a nail into the wall but only hung up by the wire. This would make the Mirror personal property. If the Mirror was in the bathroom it makes sense why the buyer would think the seller was going to leave it, that is a big part of a bathroom. But it can easily be taken off with no tools. Again sometimes buyers think they are going to get it but the sellers took it.

In both of these situations the buyers feel like the sellers pulled a fast one on them.They through a fit and start calling to trying to track down the seller but at this point it is too late. The damage is done, feelings have been hurt and people are left with a bad taste in their mouth. I can see why this could be frustrating and both parties have a case. These situations could have be avoided.

If they just wrote it into the contract this could have been avoided. Sellers if you want to take something and you're not sure if its a Fixture or Personal Property write it out in the contract that you're taking it. Even if you're 99% you can take it write it in the contract. If you write it in the contract and then a issue comes up you just point to the contract. Your agent should be advising you on this but if you have a question make sure you ask. 

Remember this "when in doubt, write it out". This simple step can save you time and a headache.

  spokane real estate, home selling, selling home, buying and selling a home, home seller tips, tips, real estate agents, negotiation, matt bergman

Haven Real Estate Group
Cambria Henry
304 W Pacific Ave; Suite 360
Spokane, WA 99201
509-590-4701

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