Home for sale: Rose garden not included | Drapery Connection

THE SIMPLE REAL ESTATE LAW OF FIXTURES. Most home buyers and sellers, and even their real estate agents, often do not understand the simple law of fixtures.

A "fixture" is moveable personal property, which, by means of bolts, nails, screws, cement, glue, or other attachment method, has been converted to real property. Clearly, that dining room chandelier had been converted from personal property to real property because of its permanent attachment to the structure. Nothing was said in the sales contract about its exclusion from the condo sale.

A more troublesome example can be window coverings. Suppose a house or condo has beautiful draperies and attached wood window blinds. Those draperies hang by hooks from a drapery rod that is screwed into the wall.

The law of fixtures says the draperies are personal property because they can be easily removed without damage, but the drapery rods are fixtures included in the home sale. The wood window blinds, if permanently attached to the structure, are considered fixtures, which are included in the home sale.

But the printed sales contract can change the result. Most well-written home sales contract forms specify "window coverings" are included in the sales price (unless otherwise excluded).

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