Photo courtesy of Jesus Rodriguez on Flickr.
When you’re getting ready to sell your home, it’s important to consider what stays and what you take with you when you move. Generally, items that can be removed are taken by the seller when it’s time to move out. If an item can’t be removed, it stays with the house for the new residents. "I tell my buyers and sellers, when in doubt, imagine of you picked your house up, and turned it upside down," says our agent Amy Whitston. "Anything that doesn't fall will generally be considered a fixed item, and therefore stays." However, there can be exceptions, depending on agreements reached by the buyer and seller. Here are a few items that are typically left or taken when a home is sold:
Built-ins- Any bookshelves, cabinets, benches, and other pieces that are part of your home’s construction typically remain in the home. Removing these items would cause damage to the home, so sellers often elect to leave these behind. These features can also help market your home to a potential buyer.
Light Fixtures- Ceiling lamps and chandeliers are usually considered part of the home, and therefore are included as part of the home sale. If an item has particular value to the seller, such as a chandelier that has been in the family for generations, it is up to the seller to negotiate its removal with the buyer. If the buyer agrees, it is also the seller’s responsibility to remove the fixture without damaging the home.
Alarm Systems- If your alarm or security system is hardwired into your home, it usually stays in place. If the system is wireless, however, it can be removed by the seller. Sellers should arrange for their service to be canceled, or relocate the service to the new residence. Some security companies offer incentives or even free relocation, so check with your company before you move.
Custom Fixtures- If you have installed custom window treatments, including blinds, plantation shutters, and curtains, these typically stay with the home. Choosing to leave window treatments in place can be an attractive feature to potential buyers. If you prefer to take your treatments with you, be sure to let your agent know so they can inform potential buyers.
Electronics- As technology becomes an increasing presence in modern homes, it can be difficult to determine what systems stay in the home. Hardwired systems like surround sound are typically considered part of the house, and remain part of the sale. If a system is wireless and can be easily removed, however, it usually remains with the seller. When it comes to wall mounted televisions, the actual television often remains with the seller, while the wall mount stays with the home.
Patio Furniture- Lawn chairs, tables, grills, and playscapes are considered personal items, and are typically taken by the seller. If you prefer to leave any of these items behind, let your agent know. Buyers who love to entertain or have children may be interested in purchasing the outdoor furniture or playscape.
Appliances- Large appliances, including refrigerators, washers, and dryers, are considered moveable items, and can be taken by the seller. However, sellers may also choose to leave their appliances behind, or let their agent know that they are willing to negotiate. Leaving appliances behind can be another benefit in the eyes of a potential buyer.
Accessories- Items such as rugs, basic curtains, and removable shelves, are often considered the seller’s personal items. Let your agent know which items you plan to keep with you or leave behind after your home sale.
If you have any questions or concerns about including a particular item in your home sale, talk to your agent! Your agent will advise you about what to keep and what to leave behind. Your agent can also handle negotiations with the buyer. Our agents are experts when it comes to representing buyers and sellers in the Austin area. If you have any questions about Austin real estate, please contact us today!