A fixture is generally something that is solidly attached to your home. A ceiling light, a built in dishwasher or microwave. A screwed in mirror in the bathroom. The rule of thumb is that you need a tool to affix or remove.
A Chattel is a possession that is not affixed in any permanent way. A picture, a mirror that is hung, not screwed. It is something very easily removed, without tools that you take with you. A hose or ladder in the garage, lawn furniture or a toaster.
Some things can be confusing. How about your TV attached to the wall. The TV is yours but the arm on the wall that it is attached to should be left with the house when you sell. Drapes are generally chattels but the rods attached to the wall are usually fixtures.
That’s where great agents like us come in. If you aren’t sure just what the heck the property is: Chattel or fixture, tell your agent and they can mention and exclude or include it when we come to responding or making an offer.
For instance, we can include all window treatments. This would avoid confusion. Or all closet organizers (some are screwed, some are loose). Maybe you want to keep that light fixture in the baby’s room, even though it is a fixture. We can exclude specific items in the listing, or make sure they are included in any offer.
Your agent can keep you from getting a bill or being sued after closing and make sure everyone, buyers and sellers, are clear on all the property changing hands and are happy and on firm legal ground by moving day!
If you have questions about chattels and fixtures, give us a call. If you have another topic you would like us to cover, let us know