In general, a fixture is a piece of equipment which has been attached to real estate in such a way as to be part of the premises and its removal would do harm to the building or land. Thus, when real property is transferred or conveyed, the fixtures are transferred to the grantee.
California Civil Code section 1013 provides “when a person affixes his property to the land of another, without an agreement permitting him to remove it, the thing affixed….belongs to the owner of the land.”
There are many factors that help determine whether an item attached to real property is a fixture, including intent of the party annexing the item, the difficulty in removing the item, and the manner in which the item is annexed to the real property. These are only some of the factors that must be considered. Therefore, a commercial tenant or commercial property seller should become informed about the fixture rules before removing any item affixed to real property in connection with the sale or leasing of real property.