Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 21 August 2019

Homefront: 'Will the landlord buy my fixtures and fittings when I move out?'

The Dubai resident is relocating and struggling to shift unwanted items on the secondhand market

The UAE resident only wants to ship some of his belongings to his home country. Getty Images
The UAE resident only wants to ship some of his belongings to his home country. Getty Images

I am moving out of my villa in three weeks to relocate to my home country. Over the last few months, I have been trying to sell items I don't plan to ship on the secondhand market, however, I find bargaining with buyers painful. I'm considering offering the landlord a deal to buy all the curtains, blinds and white goods. Does this happen here? Friends tell me most landlords want the property emptied, rather than having bits of furniture or fixtures and fittings left behind. What is your take on this? Shall I offer the contents to him and what shall I charge? I have a fridge/freezer, washing machine, dishwasher and blinds and curtains for a four-bedroom villa. There are also some elaborate light fittings I do not want to take. WP, Dubai

Selling secondhand furniture on classified portals can be very challenging. Unfortunately, many buyers play games with sellers to get the lowest possible price. It seems they enjoy dealing with you as if they are doing you a favour in their approach to negotiations. One thing to remember is that, regrettably, it is a buyers' market. There are many people moving out of properties at this time of year. Some might just be selling small amounts of individual items, others, like you, are moving away altogether. The issue for you is that there are often more sellers than buyers in the early summer months, which leads to the unwanted dance most sellers have to go through.

Using companies that take all of your household goods in one go is probably a better option. This way you may still be negotiating but it would be only one time for all the items rather than individually through many separate buyers.

In the past I have been involved with tenants selling the furniture or white goods to an existing landlord. This makes perfect sense to all parties.

My advice would be to invite the landlord over for a viewing of the items; this way he or she can appreciate the furniture or appliances. Even if the landlord is absent or lives abroad, sending photos is easy or meeting their representatives can also be arranged. Convincing the landlord that having these items already in place in the property could attract a new tenant makes it a benefit for all concerned.

If the landlord is not interested, try posting your items on social media groups within your local community. There are always people moving in that would benefit from your goods, who would prefer to buy them locally. Lastly, try local charities which I am sure would be delighted to receive your items. While you will not be receiving any cash, you may feel enriched by knowing you are helping less fortunate individuals.

Mario Volpi is the sales and leasing manager at Engel & Volkers. He has worked in the property sector for 35 years in London and Dubai

The opinions expressed do not constitute legal advice and are provided for information only. Please send any questions to mario.volpi@engelvoelkers.com

Updated: July 3, 2019 10:56 AM

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