What Does and Doesn’t Come With the House When You Buy It
Don’t assume that everything you see while touring a house comes with a home purchase. From furniture and decor to appliances and outdoor equipment, sellers will likely take much (if not all) of their personal property with them when they move. It’s up to the buyers to spell out in the contract exactly what they want and don’t want to be included in a home purchase. While many obvious items (think: built-in bookshelves and hardware) are typically included in a home purchase, many others are not. This is why it’s so important for buyers to consider every aspect of a home before buying it – not just the pretty furniture inside. Make sure to work with a seasoned Realtor who can write (and review) a contract that meets your needs. The last thing you want is to walk into your new home on moving day only to realize that half the appliances are missing. Curious what comes with the house when you buy it? Below, we’ve included a list of what is and isn’t included in a home purchase.
What comes with the house
In most home purchasing contracts, it’s clear that anything that is built-in or permanently affixed to the home comes with the house. This may seem like common sense, but you’d be surprised how many sellers assume they can take just anything with them. Below is a list of what comes with the house in most typical contracts. Keep in mind that if these items (and others) aren’t included in a pre-written contract, Realtors can write them in.
Built-ins – Anything that built into the home (examples: built-in bookshelves, built-in window seats and built-in cabinets) comes with the home.
Mailboxes – Whether it’s streetside or wall mounted, sellers will always leave a home’s mailbox with the home.
Ceiling fans – Ceiling fans are attached to the home and therefore, stay with the home.
Range and oven – While some appliances do not automatically come with the home, built-in ranges and ovens always do.
Dishwasher – The majority of sellers include the dishwasher with the purchase of the home.
Landscaping in the ground – Trees, shrubbery and any other landscaping that is planted in the ground comes with the house. Potted plants, on the other hand, typically don’t.
Pendants, chandeliers and other light fixtures – Light fixtures that are affixed to the home come with the house. If the light fixtures are particularly expensive, the sellers usually work this cost into the price of the home.
Drapery rods, blinds and window treatments – Since drapery rods, blinds and other window treatments are usually installed and attached to the home, they typically come with the house.
Smoke detectors – Sellers should always leave a home’s smoke detectors when selling a house. As soon as buyers move in, we recommend checking the batteries to make sure they are working properly.
Garage door openers and other access devices – Sellers always leave any access devices or codes with the new owners. This includes garage door openers, gate openers and any kind of security device.
Storm shutters and panels – If you live in a hurricane prone area, then you’ll want to make sure the sellers leave all storm shutters and panels behind.
Pool equipment – While pool accessories don’t come with the house, the pool equipment typically does.
HVAC units – These are part of the home and are always included in the purchase of the home.
Built-in outdoor cooking equipment – Does the house have a built-in outdoor grill, oven or kitchen area? Since this is attached to the property, it typically comes with the property.
Above-ground pools – Above-ground pools are typically included in the purchase of a home. If the buyer wants the pool disassembled, they may try to negotiate with the seller to get them to pay part of the cost.
All installed hardware – Most hardware comes with the house. This includes doorknobs, cabinet pulls and knobs, bathroom fixtures, etc.
What is sometimes included with the house
These items are not typically included with a home purchase – but sometimes they are, depending on the needs and wishes of the seller.
Refrigerator – Most buyers have seen a house without a refrigerator at some point while house hunting. This is because sellers usually have the right to take the fridge with them. This is almost always true of additional fridges, such as a garage fridge. If the buyers want the fridge, they’ll usually have to make a note in the purchase agreement.
Microwaves that aren’t built-in – Countertop microwaves are not always included in a home purchase. These belong to the sellers and may be taken with them.
Washer and dryer – A home’s washer and dryer are not technically built-in and therefore, don’t technically come with the home unless otherwise indicated by the sellers. Many buyers request the washer and dryer in their offer.
Hot tub – A standalone hot tub doesn’t always come with the home. Given how difficult and expensive hot tubs are to move though, many sellers will gladly include the spa in the sale of the home.
Mirrors – While bathroom mirrors usually come with the house, not all wall mirrors do. Make sure to double-check which mirrors stay and which mirrors go before buying a home.
Curtains and drapes – While built-in window treatments are included with a home, curtains and drapes can be an exception depending on the seller’s wishes.
TV mounting brackets – These are typically left with the home – but not always. Buyers should check with the sellers about whether or not they plan to leave the brackets installed in the walls.
Garage shelving or organizational systems – Any garage shelving or organizational system that isn’t built into the home doesn’t necessarily come with the house.
What doesn’t come with the house
These items are almost never included in the purchase of a home. However, they are sometimes purchased by the buyers separately.
Indoor and outdoor furniture – Furniture and decor do not usually come with the house unless otherwise noted by the sellers. If the sellers are open to relinquishing their furniture, buyers may choose to purchase furnishings from the sellers separately or as part of the purchase agreement.
TVs – Televisions (even those affixed to wall-mounted brackets) do not typically come with a home.
Remember: everything Is negotiable when purchasing a house or condo. Buyers can always ask to include or purchase items that are not normally included in a home purchase. On the flip side, sellers can always choose to not include certain items in the sale of their home that are usually included in a home purchase. For instance, a seller may decide that they want to take their window curtains with them to the new home. If this is the case, then the seller will need to negotiate this item with the buyer and/or work this consideration into the asking price.
So, you negotiated household items with the sellers, agreed on a price and purchased a house. Congrats! Now, it’s time to plan your move. To help make your upcoming move easier, we recommend hiring professionals to handle the heavy lifting. Fortunately, Moving.com’s extensive network of reputable and reliable movers makes it easy to book the best moving company for the job. All relocation companies in our network are licensed and insured, so you can rest assured that your move will be in good hands.
Written by Marian White for Moving.com