Selling The Chametz

The Daily Halacha Moment - Selling Chametz🍞


״כל השונה הלכות בכל יום - מובטח לו שהוא בן העולם הבא״ (נידה עג ע״א, מגילה כח:)


“Anyone who studies Halachot every day is guaranteed that he is destined for the world-to-come” (Megilla 28b, Niddah 73a)


Question:

What Is Mechirat Chametz (Selling of the Chametz)?

How does one fulfill this?


Answer:

One who does not want to destroy his chametz may sell his chametz to a non-Jew before Pesach, and buy it back from him after Pesach.

This sale exempts one from the obligation to dispose of his chametz that was sold, since it was owned by a non-Jew during Pesach. This sale is considered a valid transaction even though the non-Jew will not actually take the chametz to his home, and even though he is aware that the Jewish seller will buy back the chametz after Pesach. [1]


The seller should preferably state about how much money the chametz he is selling is worth. [2]


Some people have the practice of giving a key to the place where the chametz is kept to the gentile, or at least informing him where the key is kept. This is done because one transfers ownership of the chametz to the gentile, and the gentile must be given access to the chametz. [3]


The closet or room that was sold to the non-Jew should not be used on Pesach. [4] If one must enter it briefly, he may enter, but only on an infrequent basis. This should be stipulated in the sale contract. [5]


Even though one is not obligated to sell the chametz that was absorbed in one’s pots and dishes,[6] it is praiseworthy to include it when selling one’s chametz to a non-Jew. [7]


Sources:

[1]. Shulchan Aruch 448:3. See Tzitz Eliezer, vol. 20, 51:2, which states that it is praiseworthy not to sell chametz gamur, actual chametz, such as bread, and to destroy all of the chametz gamur in one’s possession. One who is stringent may do so without being concerned that he is transgressing the issur of bal tashchit, wasting food.

[2]. Biur Halachah, “Davar Muat.”

[3]. Ashrei HaIsh, vol. 3, p. 329; Shevet HaLevi 7:55; BaTzel HaChochmah, vol. 6, 34:8; Teshuvot HaRishon LeTzion, vol. 1, p. 163.

[4]. Shulchan Aruch, O.C. 440:2.

[5]. Chazon Ish, O.C. 124:2a, at the end; Halichot Shlomo, Pesach, p. 136.

[6]. Shulchan Aruch, O.C. 451:1; Ohr LeTzion, vol. 3, 9:1; Ashrei HaIsh, vol. 3, p. 329.

[7]. Ohr LeTzion, vol. 3, 9:7. See also Chazon Ovadia, Pesach §1, p. 81; Yabia Omer, vol. 6, Y.D. 11; and Yechaveh Daat 3:24, which point out that one should not sell the pots and dishes themselves, rather, only the chametz on them. If one sells the pots and dishes themselves, he must tovel them in a mikveh again (without a berachah) when he buys them back after Pesach. See also Teshuvot HaRishon LeTzion, vol. 1, p. 165.

See Laws Of The Holidays - Nacson.


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