personal property


Definition of personal property

: property other than real property consisting of things temporary or movable : chattels

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Examples of personal property in a Sentence

any personal property that is left in the lockers overnight will be impounded

Recent Examples on the Web

In court records, Sayoc was described as having $4,175 in personal property and more than $21,000 in debts, mostly from unpaid credit cards. Michael Biesecker, The Seattle Times, "Bomb suspect: Ex-stripper with cash problems, Trump devotion," 27 Oct. 2018 Other city codes limit how much personal property can be stored on sidewalks. Emily Alpert Reyes,, "Garcetti says L.A. can resume disputed ban on overnight sidewalk sleeping," 22 June 2018 Bradley Munger, 64, was charged with two counts of malicious injury to personal property in August, after a vandalism case in Sun City Carolina Lakes. Hannah Smoot, charlotteobserver, "SC retirement community 'vigilantes' threaten accused vandal," 9 Feb. 2018 As such, they’re considered personal property instead of housing, and are licensed by the Department of Motor Vehicles and must abide by its guidelines for building and safety compliance. Maggie Burch, House Beautiful, "The Impressive Evolution Of Prefabricated Houses," 24 Dec. 2018 With this case, the justices have an opportunity to defend—or curtail—people’s right to cooperate with police without having their personal property destroyed in the process. Matt Ford, New Republic, "Should Cops Be Allowed to Rip Up Your Stuff While Looking for Drugs?," 15 Feb. 2018 There are more than 28,000 claims for residential personal property, nearly 2,000 from commercial property and 9,400 in auto and other claims for the fires. Kathleen Ronayne, The Seattle Times, "Insurance claims at $9 billion from California fires," 12 Dec. 2018 Earlier this month, John Mayer's mansion was burglarized and thoroughly ransacked, with a group of thieves getting away with about $200,000 worth of music equipment and other personal property. Devon Elizabeth, Teen Vogue, "Bella Thorne Reportedly Victim of Attempted Robbery," 22 Aug. 2018 Medley was taken into custody on Thursday and among his charges are aggravated assault, abuse of an adult and burning personal property, officials said. Elizabeth Zwirz, Fox News, "Tennessee father accused of starting house fire, setting daughter's wheelchair ablaze 'while she was in it,' officials say," 22 Sep. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'personal property.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of personal property

1833, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for personal property

Last Updated

12 Jun 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for personal property

The first known use of personal property was in 1833

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More Definitions for personal property

personal property


Financial Definition of personal property

What It Is

Personal property is a class of property that can be moved from one location to another.

How It Works

Generally, real property is a class of property that cannot be moved.  It includes land and buildings, for example.  Personal property typically includes furniture, fixtures, tools, vehicles, and machinery and equipment.  All of these items can be moved.

Why It Matters

Many states impose a personal property tax on individual and business personal property. These personal property taxes are particularly important to consider, especially when comparing state corporate tax rates.  Some states offset their low corporate tax rates and even low real estate tax rates with higher personal property taxes.  As a result, it is important to consider the whole tax bill when evaluating state tax rates.

Source: Investing Answers

personal property

Legal Definition of personal property

see property

More from Merriam-Webster on personal property

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for personal property Encyclopedia article about personal property

Comments on personal property

What made you want to look up personal property? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to take the place or position of

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