What is a fixture?

This is a personal property that is attached permanently to a land or structure. Think of it as a chandelier installed into the ceiling, and the lumber in the backyard that was cut and used to build a house’s deck.

At the time of sale, fixtures must be transferred to the new owner along with the property unless the purchase contract specifically excludes them.

Fixtures can be a source of misunderstanding and dispute between buyer and seller. This is why both parties must understand what are considered fixtures and what are not.

In the court of law, there are rules that differentiate fixtures from a chattel property, or those that are not permanently affixed to real property.

A personal property is considered a fixture if:

  • It is attached by cement, bolts, nails, and other permanent method of attachment.
  • It designed adaptable for use with a property, such as the surround sound speakers mounted on the walls or ceilings.
  • It is intended by the buyer and seller to be left or sold with the house. An above-ground swimming pool, for example, stays with the property but the pool equipment can go.
  • It is agreed by both the buyer and seller that a fixture is included or excluded from the sale. In this case, the contract must state which items are sold with the property.
  • It is granted by the court based on who is more in favor with them. Most court cases favor the buyer over the seller and the tenant over the landlord.

 

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