When buying or selling a home one of the most common questions I get asked (other than “Where is the property line? Duh, look where the neighbor stops mowing the lawn.”) is what stays and what goes in the transaction. Yes, I get asked if, “are they leaving the coffee maker, what about the runner on the stairs, the original Hockney over the fireplace and the water-pick in the downstairs master?” You’d be surprised what some folks think they get to take and what others think should stay. So, if that Clash song is going through your head, “Should I stay or Should I Go” (and hopefully not because of that awful commercial for Choice Hotels) look no further, I have a legal expert here to sharpen the fuzzy details.
Douglas Moliterno is the founder of Hamptons Law, a boutique law firm located in Amagansett specializing in real estate and estate planning law. I recently had a chance to discuss with him some of the finer points of selling a home on the East End. Here’s what he had to say:
Q1 –Hi Doug, often sellers and buyers aren’t exactly sure what stays and what goes with a home sale. I usually tell people, if it’s nailed, bolted-in or or otherwise permanently attached, it stays. Is that a good rule of thumb?
Good rule of thumb. I also use the term “built-in” to describe items that stay.
Q2 – What about wall mounted televisions?
A good rule of thumb is that the wall mounts are fixtures and should remain but the TVs are personalty and can go – always best to be clear up front as this isn’t a straight forward issue and the buyer and seller might have a different understanding of it.
Q3 – I recently had an awkward situation with a swing set. Do they usually get included with a sale?
The swing-set should be included if it is bolted or cemented into the ground. If it’s not “attached,” then it should likely be considered personalty and can be taken by the seller – again, always best to clear this up from since it’s not always clear to both buyers and sellers
Q4 – I’ve also had people try to take the washer and dryer. That’s usually included in the sale with most contracts? Do buyers need to make sure they’ll be included?
Unless specifically excluded up front by the seller, there should be no question about whether a washer and dryer (and other major appliances are included) – of course they are part of the purchase.
Q5 – What about bathroom mirrors?
My typical rule with mirrors is that they can be taken by the seller if they are hanging on hooks or nails, etc.; if they are nailed in or bolted, then they should remain.
Q6 – What do sellers and buyers need to do to avoid these sort of problems?
Work with a good broker that knows what to look out for and knows which gray areas (wall-mounted TVs, swing sets) can cause problems/awkward situations down the road. If not negotiated properly and clearly up front this can become an unneeded problem.
If you’d like to contact Doug he can be reached at his office in Amagansett. 631-267-2700 or via e mail at INFO@HAMPTONSLAW.COM.
In the 80’s it was chicken wings, in the 90’s it was sushi and the 00’s it was cupcakes and Rose wine. BUT WHAT DO DRINK WITH THAT CHILLED BOTTLE OF ROSE!? What is the hottest food trend hitting the east end? It might be hard to believe but the delicacy of the moment appears to be Fried Chicken! I kid you not, in spite of the fact there is a line outside Soul-Psycho every week, those same spinners are are lining up and paying good bucks to chow down on Colonel Sander’s favorite dish. But there’s no Colonel Sander’s in the Hamptons (thank god, it’s not as good as you remember) where is the proof? Well don’t get your feathers ruffled and look no further than the lines at lunch time for Cromer’s Market in Sag Harbor. Every Saturday the Fried Chicken is first to go and the hungry hungry hippos….err I mean Hamptonites are lining up to get their hands on this caloric delicacy.
Red Horse Market in East Hampton also specializes in a fried chicken that has become a favorite among some of the famous and non-famous locals. No names mentioned but one is a late night talk show host.
For those with more epicurian tastes, the number one rated restaurant in the country Eleven Madison Park is offering a “Fried Chicken Feast” with coleslaw, rolls, potato salad, pickels, water melon and fresh baked pie all for the frugal price of $75 dollars a person. By the way, reservations are required (hahahah good luck with that one) and shock of all shocks…. gratuity is not included.
East Hampton Grill which is arguably the most popular eatery in the Hamptons right now is also putting their feathers in the ring with their new “Flying Chicken” menu. All summer long starting at 11 am, you can order their “Grandma Ding’s Cripsy Fried Chicken” to go. Prices start at about $12 for 3 piece and buscuit lunches and go up to $48 for 12 pieces and 6 buscuits. You can also get their famous cole slaw, tabbouleh salad and sodas and sparkling water to round out your poultry party pack. The food is for take out…. and some limited seating in the restaurant. Click here for more details.