As you vacate a property, you might be wondering about various items that may be best left with the home. Which items should be left behind, and which would be inappropriate or unnecessary to hand off to the buyer?
What Gets Left Behind?
A good rule of thumb? If the item in question is either bolted, mounted, or nailed to a surface in the home, then you should probably consider leaving it behind. It might seem like common sense that a home’s fixtures should be left for the next owner, but there are some items that are more ambiguous.
For example, maybe you currently have a mounting mechanism installed in your home to hold your TV. Although you will obviously be taking your TV, it’s a good idea to leave the mounting mechanism behind. These are fairly universal and require you to drill into drywall or woodwork to install.
Remember, if the home has been modified for the sake of an item, then that item is likely a fixture and should be left behind. Another example involves an air conditioning unit. For a portable unit installed in your window, it’s generally acceptable for you to bring this along to your new home. Alternatively, if that same unit is housed in a space specifically created in the wall, then it’s better to leave the air conditioner behind.
Similarly, if anything is anchored to the ground outside, you should leave it behind. This includes basketball hoops, swing sets, and playground equipment—if it’s cemented to the ground, the assumption is that it will come with the home. Any portable basketball hoops or outdoor furniture usually travels with you to your next home.
If your property includes any fixtures or permanent outdoor accessories that you’d like to bring along during your move, you should be upfront about this with any potential buyers. Being upfront about your intentions and being specific about what you’re taking could save you a good deal of headache and conflict after the sale. If you’re in doubt, ask your realtor to discuss the issue with the buyers’ agent to ensure there are no surprises at the time of sale.
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