Fixtures, Furniture, and Finishes. Misunderstandings that Kill Home Sales

Most sellers know that staging a home exponentially increases the odds of selling it. This means spending time, effort, and money, to get the house looking the way it needs to be to catch a potential buyer’s eye. Most of the time people hire a professional to stage their house, and the professional moves out a few of your items and brings their own in pace of them.

Sometimes when buyers see a home and they fall in love with it, they want it as is, furniture included. It’s not always the seller’s items to provide with the sale. Sellers often times have to lay out what items can stay, and what goes with them. Some items can be confusing, like light fixtures, built-in objects, etc. and will need reasoning why they will be staying or going.

What’s a fixture, and what’s its significance

A fixture is anything inside the home as long as it is attached to the property, meaning if it was removed it could cause damage. Typically, if it requires a screwdriver to uninstall, it’s a fixture.


Dishwashers, microwaves, cooktops, and sinks usually stay with the house. The fridge and washer/dryer are often up for negotiation. If it is built into the cabinets, it stays, if it stands on its own, it goes with the seller. Everything is up for negotiation though; this is just the general rule.

Light fixtures

The chandelier in the foyer is often a point of question. These usually will remain with the home, but don’t be surprised of the seller makes a quick swap between your last walk through and signing day. If it’s something you really want, make sure to get it in writing which items stay.

Window treatments

Blinds and shades should stay since they are fitted for the windows they cover. Some sellers have their blinds and drapes matching their furniture, making them a bit less likely to let go of. If these are something you want, have it in writing that they are going with you.

Flat-screen TVs

Typically if these are screwed on to the wall, it’s considered a fixture. Then again, it’s your TV, and the new buyer can get their own. Enough said.

Backyard storage shed

If the buyer likes the shed you have in the backyard, and can perfectly imagine their tools in there, it will probably stay. But if you, as the seller, has the means to take it with you, get ready to do some negotiating.

Hoe dose the buyer obtaining furniture that isn’t a fixture

If you as a buyer see furniture that isn’t a fixture, and you really want it, be sure to include those items in your offer. You will want these items left in the home so they come at no cost to you. If the seller tries to counteroffer you, you could use those items as leverage. You should accept their counter if they throw in, your choice of furniture. Make sure the items are on the purchase contract, and do a final walk through before closing to make sure they were actually left behind.

What if the seller leaves free standing fixtures and furniture

If the seller has a big move ahead of them, they won’t always take the bulkier items, leaving them for the buyer, and it isn’t always for free. They might not want to have the expense of hauling that grand piano across the state, so they will recoup the cost through you. Don’t ever advertise you are willing to leave or sell items in the home until you have aged to a price on the hoe during contract negotiations.  The home transaction and the items transaction should be two separate deals.

How do finishes apply

This is referring to décor, how the home looks when it’s decorated. Paint is an example of this, and obviously stays with the walls. Purchasers can negotiate a price if they will have to repaint walls upon moving in.  Water stains on the ceiling, or cracks in the foundation can be hidden among new paint jobs. Never assume anything, avoid assumptions and you’ll be safe. Put the items of interest on paper, and be ready to negotiate them somehow. Just be upfront, state your intentions, and this can be a smooth sailing. 

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