Buyers Ask Home Sellers For Personal Property
Often, buyers ask home sellers for personal property such as washers and dryers, refrigerators, lawn equipment, you name it. I have had several issues with personal property in 2019. So much so that I now suggest the buyers just do a bill of sale for $1. When things go wrong take a wild guess who has to fix it much of the time?
I had a seller who had said from the start to leave the fridge as it was an odd size. We put it in the listing agreement. His daughter had packed up the house and the movers took the refrigerator. We always write in the contract that any personal property is left in as-is condition with no warranty, expressed or implied. Of course, the buyers forget all this. The seller could not get to the stored refrigerator and it was packed away in storage for a month. The sellers agreed to pay a sum of money to the buyers to make them stop calling. The sellers decided they needed the refrigerator after all.
Another set of clients agreed to leave the refrigerator and it was an old used refrigerator they bought second hand. It was broken, the freezer didn’t work. The sellers decided that the fridge was in such bad shape, they hauled it away. The buyer’s agent had a meltdown. I offered to throw in a few hundred dollars. The buyer’s agent said the buyers were just too upset. They wanted to move on and hoped the sellers kept their word on the rest of the contract.
The excerpt below was written by Elizabeth Weintraub in 2012 Personal Property in a Short Sale. What am I talking about? These are the buyers who feel it’s OK to ask the seller to leave behind personal items. Things like the refrigerator or washer and dryer, which are not fixtures. Maybe they want the dining room table or bedroom furniture. The sellers personal belongings are not part of the short sale. Non-fixtures do not remain with the home. If you spot a 1965 Mustang in the garage, don’t wet your lips and demand the keys. Don’t assume the sellers are vulnerable and will cave into unreasonable demands. A Sacramento short sale is not a flea market. Everything you can see with a naked eye is not negotiable. Personal property is not free for the taking in a short sale.
Needless to say, I now have a special addendum that says the personal property, whatever it is, that the items are being transferred for $1 at close of escrow on a bill of sale outside of escrow. The same issues were a problem in 2012 as well and continue all of these years later.
To avoid issues with personal property when you are selling your home, call Weintraub & Wallace Realtors with RE/MAX Gold. We can be reached at 916-233-6759.
— JaCi Wallace