Ready to sell your property? Here’s what you can’t take with you

You’ve managed to sell your property and now it’s time to pack everything up for the removalists.

But what about the fancy dishwasher you only recently installed – can you take that with you? You might be surprised about what you can’t take from your property once it’s sold.

Removable items you can bring to your next property

Unless there’s a specific clause outlined in the contract about particular items staying put, you can generally take anything that is easily shifted and doesn’t cause damage to the property during the removal process.

Of course that includes your standard personal items like tables, chairs, televisions and beds, but also some bulkier things such as:

● Fridges.
● Microwaves.
● Chest freezers.
● Washing machines.
● Dryers.
● Furniture (including outdoor furniture).
● Pot plants.
● Home-theatre systems (although any brackets will need to stay).

It’s best to live by the rule that if it’s an easily removable item – that is, if it’s not bolted to the floor, mounted to a wall or nailed into something – then you can probably take it with you.

Fixtures you can’t take when you sell your property

There are, however, a number of fixtures you can’t take with you. These ‘fixtures’ are described as items that are attached to the property in such a way that they become part of the entire home. That means when you’re selling real estate, you’re also selling all the fixtures that are deemed part of that piece of real estate.

So what can’t you take with you?

● Smoke detectors.
● Hot-water systems.
● Solar panels.
● Mail boxes.
● Ceiling fans.
● Ovens (including rangehoods and stoves).
● Pools.
● Fixed floor coverings (not including rugs).
● Fixed window covers like blinds.
● Brackets.
● Wired light fittings.
● Plants and botanicals from the garden (however, this can get quite complicated so it’s important you understand what you can and can’t take from a garden, and get everything in writing in the contract of sale).

The grey areas of selling real estate

Dishwashers are definitely a grey area when it comes time to sell. If it’s a free-standing dishwasher that’s easily removed, then it likely won’t be included in the sale. However, the general consensus is that built-in dishwashers must remain.

It’s also legal to take curtains that aren’t affixed to rods. However, this could potentially cause issues when finalising the sale, so make sure you’re across the difference between fixtures and chattels.

In all cases, it’s critical that you clarify in your contract whether any ‘grey area’ fixtures are included or excluded.

Use fixtures and chattels to your advantage

Rather than thinking of fixtures as a detriment – or worrying that you won’t be able to bring your top-of-the-range stovetop to your next property – consider the value in using your items as a sales tools.

Especially when you’re in the midst of bargaining with a buyer, you might be able to offer something of value that you don’t need at your new place. Is your current fridge too big for your next property? Do you have a hanging garden that you’d rather not move?

Using items as a bargaining tool could be exactly what you need to get that potential buyer over the line.

Need help deciding before you list your property?

Speak to a member of the Chadwick Real Estate team today to find out how your property’s fixtures could improve the selling price of your home.

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