Fittings and fixtures are, as they sound, the fittings and fixtures you find in a property, new or old. They cover everything from the showerhead, to built-in bedroom wardrobes to the heating system and the smaller hardware pieces that many people overlook. In their simplest terms, fittings are anything that is not fixed down and if you were to shake the house, fittings are the bits that would come rolling out.
Many people can easily look past the fixtures and fittings of a property when they are focusing on the size of the kitchen/diner, the number of bedrooms and day-dreaming about opportunities for the garden. But they are a key part of any property and can cause some upset if you purchase a house with the understanding you will be getting the fixtures but turn up to your new home that is completely stripped bare.
When it comes to selling your property, clarity is an important aspect and the more information you can provide potential buyers, the more confident they will be in offering you the asking price - or close to it - and seeing the purchase to completion. If you have someone showing interest in your property for sale but try to avoid answering questions clearly about what fixtures you are leaving, you are only going to put people off.
Most buyers will expect a property to come with;
- The heating system
- Complete bathroom suites
- Built-in storage and wardrobes
- Socket faceplates, light switches and fixtures
While there isn’t a legal requirement for any fixtures or fittings to be left behind on a sale, you can quickly find yourself in small claims court in front of your disgruntled buyers if you aren’t clear about the terms of sale.
The best way to avoid legal trouble down the line is to ensure that any buyer’s that make an enquiry have a fully detailed resource pack provided that includes information on what will remain in the property and what you plan to take or remove. Sometimes buyers may fall in love with a particular property because of a certain aspect. Such as a rainforest shower in the ensuite or a summer house in the garden and may be willing to increase their offer for you to leave these items behind.
Yes, by ensuring your fittings and fixtures are maintained and have a service history (where required for gas appliances) or even by investing in the fixtures and fittings you plan to leave behind. These are all taken into account during valuation and can help increase your home’s value when it comes time to sell.
Hardware in particular; the handles found on cupboard doors, the inside tracks of sliding wardrobe doors, internal locks and window latches can all be replaced or simply cleaned and polished to ensure they look tidy after years of use. You can create a smarter look by carefully choosing upgraded hardware to match the current interior home style, such as warm grey walls and smart black metals.
Hand-built or quality DIY furniture that is too cumbersome to take to your new home can also be an upsell. Just don’t try to convince experienced buyers that the shoddy pallet-build lean-to in the garden is a masterpiece. We are talking about experienced builds by tradesmen who know what they are doing and have created bespoke furniture for the home. Quality handmade furniture often uses sturdy materials such as steel box sections (which can be beautifully finished in black) and solid wood.
When it comes to selling a home, being clear about what you intend to leave and what you intend to take can not only influence your valuation price for the better but can prevent you facing conflict down the road. Anything you leave, you should ensure is up to date on its servicing and always give the property a thorough clean, shine and polish before your sales pictures are taken. You want to ensure those first-impressions are positive from the start and let the property itself do the talking when it is time for a viewing.