Mooers Realty Maine Real Estate Blog
Personal Property In A Real Estate Sale | What Stays, What Goes?
The personal property in a real estate sale, what can go, what has to stay?
The listing for a property should spell out if the appliances stay and which ones. Including the make and model so no swap switcharoo helps make it crystal clear. And to avoid an inferior or broken appliance geting added to the sale.
If the listed price with added personal property items is not met, then none of the personal property has to stay.
What is the difference between personal property and a fixture? When you don't buy and sell real estate often, confusion can happen about what is expected but does not happen. No one should have to wonder what stays, what goes in a real estate sale. Don't leave it to a verbal list that not all the parties remember. And make sure besides spelling it all out on the purchase and sale agreement to warn family members, friends. To leave the property alone... for the seller to make sure nothing evaoporates after the ink is dry on the purchase and sale agreement spelling out the terms of the transfer.
Oil pro-ration is as important as the calculation for the real estate property taxes.
The money lost hurts whoevers pocket did not get the chunk of change. Whatever party gets left out of the reimbursement feels cheated. And when fuel oil in the tank costs are high per gallon, the need to pro-rate is a strong one when there is a considerable amount of oil left at the property for sale. Less hassle happens when there is under a quarter of a tank and the seller says close enough. Don't hassle them with the nickel and dime. But when there are two 275 or 330 gallon oil tanks and they are filled to the brim, the seller should feel the desire to get reimbursed for the fuel oil.
In our real estate list and sale experience it is better when there is not personal property that is wrestled over. When someone helps themselves to items. The appliance left behind often has issues too that adds to the tension. One electrical burner on the cook stove does not work. The freezer in the refrigerator does not do it's job to keep everything frozen. Unless new appliances, under warranty that transfers with the title to the property, broken appliances in need of repair are better to escort out of the building before they are included in a sale.
Often the focus moves far left or right of a real estate property sale and the personal property tug of war over the lawnmower, the swing set or trampoline, hot tub, whatever takes center stage. It can suck the fun out of the house sale when a buyer is excited but suddenly feets cheated because of how the personal property items are handled. Or if they are left behind because they don't work as they should.
Getting rid of garbage, debris, dead water heaters or empty paint cans is expensive for whoever is left with the job. That is not the kind of personal property anyone desires.
No one wants to spend money if they don't have to and it's our job as a REALTOR to smooth out the wrinkles and keep emotions in check. Transfer station dumpsters at so much a pound can rack up quite a sizeable bill. Plus the manpower needed to fill them up takes time a person would rather spend doing something more leisurely and relaxing.
I have had a waterfront property sale at a lake cottage full of beautiful, fairly new furniture, appliances, lots of personal property.
And the seller did not want to move any of it. And the buyer objecting at the walk through complaining that suddenly he, she, they don't want any of it. Move it out. Which adds pressure to the real estate sale when scrambling to load it up, haul it away has to happen. Kids electronic games, dining room sets, chairs, couches, beds, lights, dresses, end tables, all the household items needed to run a vacation home.
Clean it out. Get rid of everything but the major appliances. Make it go away and heave ho quickly or no dice for a real estate closing. Tension can build when buyers and sellers are not on the same page for expections. Or when what they expected is not known until late in the Maine property sale.
I've rented an orange and while uhaul moving van and cleaned out what needs to go carefully.
And found a new home at Catholic Charities, the Salvation Army thrift store or a burned out family that lost everything.
In a small Maine community, there is always a need to fill with someone living there. Trash or treasure is a matter of opinion in a real estate house sale. No one wants old tires, car batteries, bags of who knows what left on the premises. But what happens to what has to be addressed. And "as is" can hold completely different meanings for a house buyer, the home seller. Something that is known and accpeted can change as the buyer or seller realizes what they agreed to without thought or professional guidance. Red flags are apparent to someone that has been around a few real estate sale scenarios just like the current one.
So when you list a property for sale, be clear as a bell on what stays in the sale at the listed price.
What would be the price for items not to be included but up for sale is an important list to present the buyer first. That real estate buyer may figure the items should be included as more negotiations take place. But avoid making it a more, more demanded situation. Besides personal property, repairs to the place can start to be made part of a sale that never included them.
The real estate sale is not over until the closing happens. And even after that the agent or broker stays involved when issues come up. The kind the buyer figures the seller knew about and ran away from without disclosing. There is no law in Maine that says one or all the appliances have to stay in a property sale. And any light fixtures the seller wishes to retain should be swapped out, out of mind before the marketing drum starts to beat.
The three door stainless steel refrigator that does everything from make ice cubes, provide on demand cold drinking water is not a cheap item.
Neither is the 54" zero turn riding lawnmower that the buyer spies with their little eye on the house tour video or the real walk through of what's for sale. Places with lots of expensive items like big screen TVs and elaborate sound systems, patio furniture, antique furniture and wall paintings.
The house buyer can like your taste in the the furnishings, the extra doodads and figure why not leave it right where it sets. Some sellers will include lots of furnishings but they don't add to the sale price. They can get lost in the sale because the camper trailer or power boat can stay but the buyer always has those items. They don't value another one like a person on the hunt for one that does not own one would.
Sell off the extra stuff so it does not become a distraction bargaining chip.
Some buyers can get make it like petty larceny. Like a spoiled child demanding more and more that makes the agent or broker have to work extra hard to keep cool heads. To not lose track of the real estate sale, not the Monty Hall let's make a deal on this, on that.
Confusion happens when the fine details of the real estate sale are not spelled out up front or when communication does not have as much as it should when conditions of the sale changes. What are the terms of the sale have to address the personal property inside and around the real estate listing for sale to avoid hard feelings and misunderstandings. Advice from your family members or friends does not help in making you feel you are being rewarded or jipped. No one wants to be cheated, swindled or made a fool of and house sales are a business transaction.
What stays in a real estate house sale?
The norm and tradition of the local market is part of the answer. What does the buyer and seller think or want is part of the negotiations. Was it installed and bolted to a wall with the intent to be needed to run the place? The fireplace tools made of brass, the curtain rod for the sliding glass window treatment, the moveable clothes line, the vegetables from the garden before harvest all can cause a bad taste in both the buyer and seller. Who both had very different expectations that were not sufficiently addressed before, during, even after the real estate sale.
MOOERS REALTY 69 North ST Houlton ME 04730 USA