Whether you’re a first-time homebuyer or veteran house-flipper, window treatments can be a point of confusion in the real estate world. Are they included with the home, or do they belong to the original owners? If you’re moving, but you own custom-designed draperies that match your furniture, it makes sense to want to take them with you. But if you’re looking at a new home and adore the plantation shutters, doesn’t it also make sense to assume they come with the place? As it turns out, no assumptions are safe when it comes to real estate and window treatments. Here’s why.
Attached Fixtures vs. Personal Property: Window treatments are split between two categories in home-selling: attached fixtures and personal property.
- Attached fixtures are attached permanently to the home and therefore generally included in the purchase. These include curtain rods and many types of blinds, shades, and shutters.
- Personal property is not attached to the home, and therefore remains the personal property of the original homeowner. This includes curtains, draperies, and other window coverings deemed “unattached.”
Usually this differentiation is written into the contract for the home. If it’s not, though, you could find yourself in a dispute over what you thought was yours and what wasn’t. In order to avoid this issue, here are a few tips for sellers and buyers.
Sellers: Think like a local. Familiarize yourself with local customs for what conveys with a sale, and make sure to note on the listing agreement and sales contract anything that doesn’t. Looking to attract homebuyers with window coverings? Here’s some advice.
Buyers: Don’t assume anything. If you’re looking at a home and you’re in love with the window coverings, don’t just assume they come with the place. Ask for more details, or ask the seller directly about specific window treatments you’re interested in.
If the window treatments are a must-have for the property you’re considering, put your request in writing so it’s clear exactly what is included in your purchase.
Sellers: Be specific. Specify in the purchase contract what personal property you plan to leave in the home versus take with you. Carefully review the listing-agreement inclusions and exclusions so they accurately list everything you intend to sell (inclusions) and keep (exclusions). Clarify whether you plan to leave entire window treatment sets, only hardware like curtain rods, or nothing at all.
Buyers: Speak up. Carefully examine the listing agreement inclusions and exclusions and make sure they’re in line with your expectations. If they aren’t, speak up about any discrepancies and ask for clarification.
When it comes to real estate and window treatments, local customs serve as a rough guide, but there are no safe assumptions. Consult with your realtor or the appropriate professional to make sure all of your windows are covered.
Looking to sell a home? Window treatments can help. Looking to adorn the windows of your newly purchased or newly built home? At Strickland’s Blinds, Shades & Shutters, we can help you get started with a free on-site consultation. Let’s meet today.