When I work with home sellers I am often asked  how to handle fixtures and items the seller doesn’t want to leave. You have two choices.

1.  To leave a note about what stays and what doesn’t

2.  To remove the items you want and replace them with something inexpensive but appropriate.

Without question, choice #2 is the right way to go whenever possible. Offense is always better than defense. Choice #1 puts you in a position of weakness and opens you up to having to negotiate the issue.

If you replace the items with something appropriate, even if it is cheap, the buyer won’t give it a second thought. But if they see your beautiful fixture and how great it looks they may also fall in love with it. As a seller, why would you want to give the buyer an edge to negotiate against you? Especially if the listing is taking a while and you are in a weaker position. I was working with a buyer and in the newly rehabbed kitchen, there was s note about how all the matching appliances weren’t staying with the home.  In our offer, we requested the appliances stay anyways, and since the seller was  motivated, all the appliances ended up staying. They would have been better off just buying cheap, but appropriate, appliances and taking the nicer ones out.

If you are a home seller, take control of the process and don’t leave yourself open to more stress. I once had a seller who didn’t want to leave special light fixtures in their bedroom. They left them in the home during the showings and when we received an offer, the buyer requested them to stay as part of the contract. The seller moved and took them anyways. Now, the buyer is hassling them over compensation. Why invite the headaches the week before closing? If they had simply installed something else before listing the home, this would have been avoided.

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