Severance -1. Termination of joint tenancy. 2. The permanent removal of a natural attachment, fixture, or appurtenance from real property, which transforms the item into personal property.
Explanation (2): An item can be converted from real property to personal property by removal from its permanence on the land, in other words “severed” from the property. Examples of this in action could be a simple tree removal, whereas once the tree is cut down (removed/severed) from the property it becomes personal property. Another could be any number of fixtures within a structure such as a light fixture, where upon permanent removal from the structure (severed) it reverts back to personal property.
Example: George the electrician was hired to replace the chandelier in the foyer of a home which the owners planned to sell soon. He asked the homeowners what they planned to do with the old one, and it was stated by the homeowners that they wished to keep it wherever they went and specifically asked George not to throw it away. Since the chandelier was severed from the property prior to listing for sale, it is the personal property of the owners and not included as part of the sale of real property.