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  1. #1
    choinga is offline Junior Member
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    "Real Property" Question - Leaving a Shed Behind?

    What is the name of your state (only U.S. law)? TX

    I'm not looking for legal advice - nothing anyone says here will be interpreted as such. I'm just trying to get consensus...

    I sold my house and the buyers close later this month. About 6 months ago, I put a 8X10X6 Tuff Shed from Home Depot up in the backyard. It's sitting on metal rails on a 12X12 concrete slab the previous owners had poured and had a really nice dog kennel sitting on top of it (that they tore down and took with them). The real estate agent (who happens to be our agent as well as the buyers...) told them though that he was pretty sure that the shed would 'convey', as in - it's 'real property' and part of the 'real estate'.

    The buyers did not specifically ask for the shed nor is it anywhere in the contract that they want or expect it to be left behind like they did with the playscape in the backyard or the refridgerator - both of which are in the contract and will be left behind.

    I called the the Tuff Shed folks that installed it and they offer dissasembling services and said they can get mine down, transported and rebuilt at my new house in a day for ~$600, which is less than 1/3 of what it would cost me to replace it with a new one.

    So, is the shed "real property" - as in a part of my house that I can't move? I'm finding various legal definitions online and many refer to buildings or fixtures but also say that 'real property' is not moveable. Obviously, the Tuff Shed isn't exactly designed to be folded up and moved at a moments notice, but neither is my playscape...but then again, a playscape doesn't really fall into the 'building' category either. That said, if it wasn't meant to be moved then Tuff Shed wouldn't offer the service, right?

    So, I'm just a little hazy here and trying to figure out if I take this thing is it going to come back and haunt me.

    Thanks in advance!
  2. #2
    justalayman is offline Senior Member
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    that should have been addressed in your listing and the sales contract but you didn't so now you get to argue it out.


    if the shed is just setting on the slab, it is not real property and you can take it (and most likely have to listen to them yell)

    if it is attached to a foundation, it would become permanent and as such, would be real property and would have to stay with the house.


    I called the the Tuff Shed folks that installed it and they offer dissasembling services and said they can get mine down, transported and rebuilt at my new house in a day for ~$600, which is less than 1/3 of what it would cost me to replace it with a new one.
    I have seen 2000 sq foot barns disassembled, moved to a new building lot and reassembled and entire houses moved. That doesn't mean they are not part of the real estate just because somebody offers those services.
  3. #3
    choinga is offline Junior Member
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    thanks. I'm not implying that - clearly I could probably have my entire house moved if I wanted to. But the house itself is clearly the 'real estate' - just because I drop a 8X10 shed on my property doesn't make it part of my house.

    My point was that it isn't a fixed, immovable structure. It doesn't fold down in 5 minutes and you are on your way - but the fact the company provides the service and can take it down in a matter of a few hours should at the very least imply that at least in my implemention it wasn't intended to be there as a permanent structure.
  4. #4
    justalayman is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by choinga View Post
    My point was that it isn't a fixed, immovable structure. It doesn't fold down in 5 minutes and you are on your way - but the fact the company provides the service and can take it down in a matter of a few hours should at the very least imply that at least in my implemention it wasn't intended to be there as a permanent structure.
    that simply has nothing to do with it. If you took that very same shed, built a permanent foundation and attached the shed to it, you would now have real property no matter how easy it is to disassemble and move. It becomes a permanent structure.
  5. #5
    ecmst12 is offline Senior Member
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    I am guessing this is one situation where the buyer and seller clearly need their own representation. Was this agent the buyer's agent first?
  6. #6
    HomeGuru is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by choinga View Post
    What is the name of your state (only U.S. law)? TX

    I'm not looking for legal advice - nothing anyone says here will be interpreted as such. I'm just trying to get consensus...

    I sold my house and the buyers close later this month. About 6 months ago, I put a 8X10X6 Tuff Shed from Home Depot up in the backyard. It's sitting on metal rails on a 12X12 concrete slab the previous owners had poured and had a really nice dog kennel sitting on top of it (that they tore down and took with them). The real estate agent (who happens to be our agent as well as the buyers...) told them though that he was pretty sure that the shed would 'convey', as in - it's 'real property' and part of the 'real estate'.

    The buyers did not specifically ask for the shed nor is it anywhere in the contract that they want or expect it to be left behind like they did with the playscape in the backyard or the refridgerator - both of which are in the contract and will be left behind.

    I called the the Tuff Shed folks that installed it and they offer dissasembling services and said they can get mine down, transported and rebuilt at my new house in a day for ~$600, which is less than 1/3 of what it would cost me to replace it with a new one.

    So, is the shed "real property" - as in a part of my house that I can't move? I'm finding various legal definitions online and many refer to buildings or fixtures but also say that 'real property' is not moveable. Obviously, the Tuff Shed isn't exactly designed to be folded up and moved at a moments notice, but neither is my playscape...but then again, a playscape doesn't really fall into the 'building' category either. That said, if it wasn't meant to be moved then Tuff Shed wouldn't offer the service, right?

    So, I'm just a little hazy here and trying to figure out if I take this thing is it going to come back and haunt me.

    Thanks in advance!
    **A: the shed should be conveyed to the Buyer "as is, where is" as it is considered a fixture appurtenant to the real property, unless specifically excluded from the sale in the contract. Next time if you wanted the shed, you should have written such in the contract so there was a meeting of the minds. Your agent messed up too.
  7. #7
    justalayman is offline Senior Member
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    I don't usually disagree with ya HG but in this case I must. Unless the shed was attached, it is not a fixture. It would be seen the same as a swing set. If there is no attachment to a foundation, it is a mobile piece of private property.

    as such, there is no need to exclude it from the contract.
  8. #8
    FlyingRon is offline Senior Member
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    I'm going to disagree with you Justa, while it varies from state to state as to what exactly a fixture is, I can tell you even one sitting on skids would be considered a structure here. You're even taxed on it as real property and it takes a building permit if it's over 150 sf or 8' in height.
  9. #9
    justalayman is offline Senior Member
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    note the: sitting on skids

    It is a portable structure. I can tell you in my area specifically due to that fact, it is not considered real property and is not taxable. This I know to be a fact. I have dealt with it before in Michigan. (I know, that isn't Texas)

    I know this is only anecdotal support but scroll down to the section of the article titled "shed considerations"

    [url=http://www.dallasnews.com/sharedcontent/dws/fea/home/stories/DN-nhg_sheds_0530liv.ART.State.Edition1.28ed709.html]Backyard sheds add style -- and function | News for Dallas, Texas | Dallas Morning News | Home and Gardening | Dallas Morning News[/url]

    if it isn't taxable, it isn't real property. It is private property and subject to removal upon a sale of the real property.
  10. #10
    BOR
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    choinga, if you want to research some case law you need to visist a law library. Is there a College/University near you? If so go to the law school law library, they have Jurisrpudence volumes. My law dictionary has a citation of; 35 Am.Jur. 2d Fixtures. Translated, that is American Jurisprudence 2nd edition, Volume 35.


    This legal encyclopedia is a collection of case law from around the United States, the same with CJS, Corpus Juris Secundum, and ALR, American Law Reports.


    YOUR state also will have such volumes of case law, possibly published by West and thier Key # digest system.


    Possibly you may come across a case that is similar. Bear in mind though, out of state case law that supports you may or may not be given weight for you. It depends on what there is out there for your state?

    You familiar with the Andy Griffith show? One episode Ben Weaver was evicting a family and when the dad tried to unscrew the book case from the wall, Andy said "anything attached to real property is no longer personal property and becomes part of said property". That was the law of fixtures.
    Last edited by BOR; 03-20-2010 at 06:30 PM.
  11. #11
    justalayman is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by BOR View Post

    You familiar with the Andy Griffith show? One episode Ben Weaver was evicting a family and when the dad tried to unscrew the book case from the wall, Andy said "anything attached to real property is no longer personal property and becomes part of said property". That was the law of fixtures.
    and that is my point exactly. The shed is not attached therefore it is not a fixture and the seller can take it with him.


    what is your position on this BOR?
  12. #12
    BOR
    BOR is offline Senior Member
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    Without any case law to back me up, I would say it is a movable element and NOT a fixture.

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