(A) – What is Considered A Fixture?
A fixture is an article in the nature of personal property which has been so annexed to the realty that it is regarded as part of the real property. For valuation purposes, a fixture is compensable. It does not need to be permanent or affixed in a manner as their removal would cause damage. In New York, the standard used by courts is extremely broad. A fixture is compensable if (i) it is intended to be used in conjunction with the property; (ii) it is affixed in a permanent manner to the property; (iii) the property would, in some way, be damaged if the fixture was removed; and most importantly (iv) even if the fixture is removable and it meets one of the above three criteria, it becomes compensable.
(B) – Can I Recover for Damages to My Fixtures?
The owner of the fixtures has a potential claim for damages. However, these claims are complicated and require solid evidentiary support and must be detailed in the claim. See EDPL §503(C). A fixture claim requires advance planning at the time of title vesting.
A claimant should make certain that photographs have been taken of any fixtures before moving out and that the fixture appraiser has completed his inventory and appraisal. A detailed inventory should be taken of what is removed. Any item which has been removed may not be claimed for as a fixture. However, the costs of removal and reinstallation may be claimed. Before moving, a claimant should have a copy of the fixture appraisal for reference purposes. The fixture claim will be affected by the removal claim and vice versa. A claim for an item as a fixture will bar payment for its removal and/or reinstallation.
Posted in: Condemnation