To take or not to take, that is the question.
We recently found ourselves in a situation where we wondered if we could actually take EVERYTHING we owned with us on a move. Exhibit A: we recently swapped out the basic, builder-grade mirror in our bathroom and replaced it with a unique, stylish – and if we’re being completely honest – much more expensive mirror. This simple upgrade made SUCH a big difference in our small bathroom; we couldn’t believe it took 3 years of living in our home to make this easy-breezy, yet dramatic change!
The Big Question
Because we LOVE this new mirror so much (and because it’s expensive and we don’t ever want to lose it!) we wanted to make sure this attached-to-the-house item could come with us if we ever moved. And that’s when DIY started wondering,
- Can I actually move this? (Turns out I can.)
- Isn’t that rude to the new homeowners?
- Am I being selfish? Maybe I should just save the old mirror for the next owners?
- What about the dining room light fixture?
- And can I take those custom curtains with me too?
- Uh, what about my beloved hydrangea bush??
This flood of questions had us convinced that we can’t be the only ones unsure whether or not you should (or even could) take a semi-permanent fixture from one house to the next. So we recruited a professional to share her expertise and answer all these questions, once and for all.
The Big Solution
We brought this issue to a fancy Real Estate Agent from the Chicagoland area. Here’s the tips she encouraged us to keep in mind:
- When you decide to sell and sign a listing agreement, make sure your realtor knows what the exclusions are. If anything “attached” to the home is not staying, then it should be listed in this agreement.
- Examples of what sellers could include in this listing agreement would be are light fixtures, mirrors, drapery, etc.
- If you want to skip the exclusions paperwork, the seller always has the option to take down these items prior to showing their house and either hang the original (mirror/light/curtains/etc.) back up, or leave the space completely blank.
- Before you take these items down, think twice! You may want to display these items during the showings and for professional photographs for the listing. Obviously both will look much better with these stylish items displayed in the house!
So to answer that burning question “to take or not to take” in short: YES, sellers can ALWAYS take attached items with them as long as these details are communicated clearly throughout the selling process. But ultimately you are weighing that option against how attractive you think it might make your home versus how badly you want to keep it. Choose wisely, my DIY’rs!