When you sell a house, there are many things you need to take care of- from packing up your belongings to painting the walls. But one thing that might not be so obvious is what you should do with your TV mount. Should you leave the TV mounts when you sell a house for the new homeowners, or take it with you?
This is something sellers must consider when selling their homes, what stays with the house, and what goes with them. I’m sure every state is different, but an excellent real estate agent can help you with this.
Let’s cover the basics of what stays and what goes.
Let’s talk about chattel.
Whether you’re buying or selling a home, there’s bound to be terminology you’re unfamiliar with. One of the most common ones I get questions about is “chattel.” Chattel is any piece of movable personal property. Some definitions say it’s anything other than real estate property. In other words, it’s anything that can be picked up and taken with you when you move.
So, when you’re selling your home, chattel is everything you will take with you. This stuff is not generally fixed to a wall or the floor.
What does the seller typically leave behind?
In most cases, that seller leaves anything permanently affixed to the house. This includes things like:
- Ceiling fans
- Light fixtures
- Window treatments
- Built-in shelving
- Mounted microwaves
One way I describe this to my buyers and sellers is that if you can pick the house up, and flip it upside down, anything that doesn’t fall out conveys with the home.
Of course, there are always exceptions to the rule. I’ve seen sellers negotiate to keep beautiful chandeliers and custom window treatments; however, this is few and far between. It’s also important to note that this must be outlined in the contract.
Buyers can negotiate for anything to stay.
The buyer can negotiate to keep stuff just like the seller. This must be outlined in the Non-Realty Items Addendum. The most common items I see arranged to stay are:
- Garden tools
- Patio furniture
- Hot tubs
Again, this is all negotiable and must be put into the contract.
I showed a beautiful home to one of my buyers, and they fell in love with the barstools on the island. They looked perfect and went well with the area. So they requested the barstools to stay with their offer. The sellers spent about $300 a piece (or so they said) and countered with a higher price to include the barstools. Fair enough. It goes to show that everything is negotiable.
What if the seller doesn’t take everything?
There are some instances where the seller doesn’t take everything with them. Sometimes, they just don’t have room for it in their new place or simply forget it. I’ve even seen sellers leave behind an old TV so the buyers don’t have to worry about mounting it on the wall.
In a situation like this, once the buyers close on the home, I would reach out to the listing agent and ask about anything left behind. Often, the agent will reach out to the sellers and ask if they want it. If not, the buyers can usually have anything left behind.
So, do you leave TV mounts when you sell a house?
I get this question all the time because TV mounts are expensive. And, in my opinion, they’re a pain to take down and put back up. They’re considered part of the property if they’re mounted to the wall with screws or bolts. They stay with the home unless otherwise specified.
Remember my example of flipping a house upside down? Well, the TV mounts wouldn’t be something that falls out. So it’s not considered chattel.
When you’re selling your home, there are many things to take care of. But one thing that might not be so obvious is what you should do with your TV mount and other items throughout your home. Should you leave it behind for the new homeowners, or take it with you? To be sure, ask your real estate agent for specific advice for each item you’re unsure of.