Appliance Dispute with Tenant

13 Replies

So I purchased a property in April 2019 and it had a tenant in place. The tenant signed a new lease until April of 2020. Toward the end of June the tenant stated that he wanted to move out. I gave him some options to get out before the end of his contract. 

The tenant states that the refrigerator, microwave and a window AC unit were not working before I purchased the house and that he purchased new ones for the house. The options that I gave him previously were on the condition that the appliances were left in the house. 

Today my PM informed me that the tenant will be moving out tomorrow and that he is going to take the appliances with him. 

I do have a new tenant in place and she will probably be moving in around the 10th of August. 


Do I have any recourse with the appliances or am I out of luck?

Thanks for the help.

If the tenant can prove he/she purchased the appliances they are theirs to keep. If they can't then you probably need proof from whomever you purchased the property from that the appliances were already in place and working before the tenant originally moved in. This sounds like one of those occasions where it might be more trouble than it's worth. If you truly think they are yours to keep then simply keep their security deposit when they move out and put that towards the purchase of new appliances. Hope that helps. 

What happened to the inoperable ones?  The seller may owe you some money if you purchased the property to include all appliances and fixtures.  And, why would a tenant be okay with buying appliances?  Geez...

I imagine that he had them disposed of. I don't know how I would prove that the property included all appliances in the sale although that seems normal to me. 

I know I sure wouldn't be ok buying appliances like that in a place that I'm renting. 

I wish I could use his security deposit to help replace those things.

Originally posted by @Chris Long :

I imagine that he had them disposed of. I don't know how I would prove that the property included all appliances in the sale although that seems normal to me. 

I know I sure wouldn't be ok buying appliances like that in a place that I'm renting. 

I wish I could use his security deposit to help replace those things.

 Look at the contract for the sale.  It should state what is included such as window coverings, appliances, etc.  If those are listed, then talk to the realtor who sold it to you.

@Chris Long

I’m fairly sure that appliances are considered appurtenances meaning that unless they are mentioned in a special stipulation on the sales contract they go with the property. If the tenant feels they have claim to them and the seller “sold” them to you as part of the property, your complaint may be with the seller. Can you contact them and get their side of this?

 Look at the contract for the sale.  It should state what is included such as window coverings, appliances, etc.  If those are listed, then talk to the realtor who sold it to you.

I looked through all the paperwork and I couldn't find any references to that information unfortunately. Thanks for the reply.

 

Originally posted by @Jim Young :

@Chris Long

I’m fairly sure that appliances are considered appurtenances meaning that unless they are mentioned in a special stipulation on the sales contract they go with the property. If the tenant feels they have claim to them and the seller “sold” them to you as part of the property, your complaint may be with the seller. Can you contact them and get their side of this?

Thanks Jim. I fear that without anything listed on any of my paperwork about appliances or really anything that came with the house I may be out of luck. At least I learned something for the next house.

Thanks for the reply. 

@Chris Long

Do you have a written agreement where you allowed tenant to break the lease in exchange for keeping the appliances?

Lesson learned never negotiate terms like this. You move out early their is termination fee -never negotiate it for appliances, workmanship etc.

Ask the next tenant if they have their own appliances. If they don't either buy some decent used ones or buy new ones and get the place rent ready. I assume the "missing" appliances weren't new. (the ones you got with the house)
Does it make sense that none of those appliances worked? Highly unlikely. Guess be glad these thieves are leaving. Make sure they don't take  the ceiling fans and light fixtures. lol.

It’s not even worth worrying about. Idk about your market, but typically fridges and window units are not supplied in mine. I’d go buy an inexpensive microwave (if it’s over the range) and call it a day. New tenant needs to supply their own fridge and Ac unit. One less thing you need to buy/maintain/replace.

I agree it’s not worth fighting about but I’d take it right out of the deposit unless there is good tangible proof of this in writing . Then I’d get on Facebook marketplace and replace all that stuff for under 300 bucks