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What You Should Know When Selling a “Smart Home”

What You Should Know When Selling a “Smart Home”

The growing popularity of home automation and “smart homes” can cause potential complications when selling a property. Here we consider a common question for selling agents about smart devices. 

Q: I’m selling a “Smart Home” and my seller isn’t sure which devices need to stay with the property. Are smart devices considered fixtures? 

A: It depends. The analysis for determining whether a smart device is a fixture or personal property is not unique. A fixture is typically defined as an item that is permanently attached to the real property, such as a chandelier or window shutters. Items that are not fixtures are considered personal property – or chattel – such as the furniture in the home. Ownership of fixtures transfers with ownership of the house, whereas personal property does not. 

Many smart home devices, such as an Amazon Echo, simply plug into the wall – or are entirely cordless – making them easily moveable. These types of devices are likely to be considered personal property of the seller. Other smart devices, such as smart switches, smart thermostats, smart doorbells, and security cameras, may be hardwired, which would firmly place them into the “fixtures” category. 

There may be situations where the seller has a certain affection for a fixture and does not want it to remain with the property. In this situation, the seller should remove it prior to listing, or name it as an exclusion in the listing. In situations where a buyer wants a smart device that may be considered personal property to remain with the house upon transfer, the best solution is to have an express statement in the purchase contract that stipulates what items the parties expect to remain in the home upon transfer of title. 

If any smart devices are to remain with the property upon transfer, the contract between the parties should stipulate that all accounts that control those devices be fully transferred to the buyer at the time of closing. 

(Originated from Massachusetts Association of REALTORS® Legal Hotline Q&A 12/2019)

December 3, 2019

Bean Group Celebrates Its Sweet Sixteen!

Bean Group Celebrates Its Sweet Sixteen!

This December marks 16 years since Bean Group first opened its doors for business. Since 2003, the family-owned company has expanded its footprint throughout New England to include hundreds of REALTORS® focused on meeting the needs of home buyers and sellers throughout Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and Vermont.

On behalf of the entire Bean Group family, we would like to sincerely thank our clients, agents, and staff for their support throughout the years. We wouldn’t have come this far without your contributions to our success, year after year. Cheers to you! 

Bean Group New Agent Orientation: November 2019

Bean Group New Agent Orientation: November 2019

We had a great turn out for November’s New Agent Orientation session last week at our Portsmouth, NH headquarters!

We are pleased to welcome Mike Townsend (Bangor, ME office), Janice Ware (York, ME and Portsmouth, NH offices), Lisa Gagnon (Portsmouth, NH office), Nicki Connors (Portsmouth, NH office), Elena Petersen (Winchester, MA office), and Kerry Hoyt (York, ME office) to the Bean Group family!

November 4, 2019

Bean Group Partners with Toys for Tots as Official Drop Site for 2019 Holiday Season

Bean Group Partners with Toys for Tots as Official Drop Site for 2019 Holiday Season

We are excited to announce that Bean Group has partnered with the U.S. Marine Corps Toys for Tots program as an official toy drop site for the 2019 holiday season!

Over the last 71 years, the United States Marine Corps Reserve has distributed over 542 million toys to more than 250 million children. This year, Bean Group is proud to team up with this wonderful charitable program that provides happiness and hope to less fortunate children during each Christmas holiday season.

Collection will begin on Monday, November 4, and the campaign will run through Friday, December 13. The following Bean Group offices will be designated drop-off locations:

Portsmouth, NH (1150 Sagamore Avenue)
Bedford, NH (264 South River Road)
South Portland, ME (75 John Roberts Road)

Please help us spread the word and share this information with your friends, family members, and clients! 

Please note, only new items (toys, books, electronics, etc.) may be donated. For more information on Toys for Tots, visit www.toysfortots.org.