You’ve heard the saying, ‘When you’re in Rome, make sure you act like Romans do’.
Nothing embarrasses you more than being in an environment and not being able to understand their ways of interaction, the same way nothing alienates you more than being in a line of work or field of interest and not knowing the lingo.
Not to worry though, we’ve prepared a list of Real Estate terms and meanings for your education so that the next time you call that Agent about a land opportunity or deal; next time you have a chat with family, friends or colleagues and you share your intentions about getting a property, you know what you’re saying.
ACRE: A unit of land area equal to 4,840 square yards (0.405 hectares)
AMENITIES: Enhancements that buildings offer their owners or tenants. These usually include a doorman, health club, garage, children’s playroom, common lounge, etc.
APPRAISAL: is the evaluation of a property by a licensed appraiser on its price based on previous sales of similar properties.
ASSET: An asset is something that is owned and has value.
BREACH OF CONTRACT: a violation of any of the agreed-upon terms and conditions of a binding contract.
BUILDING RESTRICTIONS: these are the requirements in building codes that affect the size and appearance of the building.
CERTIFICATE OF OCCUPANCY: is a certificate issued by a local government entity responsible for the use of land in the community where the property is located stating that the structures on the property or any improvements made to these structures comply with the codes, ordinances and regulations of that government entity and they may be occupied.
COMMISSION: is the payment to the broker for his or her efforts on marketing and selling the property, and is usually a percentage of the total purchase price.
CONTRACT: is a legally binding agreement between two parties, and in order to have a valid Contract of Sale in Real Estate, there must be: an offer, an acceptance, competent parties, consideration, legal purpose, written documentation, description of the property, and signatures of the principals.
DEED: writing signed by the seller, which transfers title in property from one person to another.
ENCUMBRANCE: A claim or liability attached to the property.
ENCROACHMENT: the trespassing on the land of another by a structure or other object.
HECTARE: A Hectare is a metric system equivalent to 2.47 acres.
JOINT VENTURE: is a business arrangement in which two or more parties agree to pool their resources for the purpose of accomplishing a specific task.
INDEMNIFICATION: the reimbursement or compensation paid to someone for a loss already suffered.
LOT: A lot is a measured section of Land.
OFFER: An offer is made to purchase a property at a specific price. Once an offer is accepted, then a contract of sale is issued by the seller’s attorney.
RENTAL: A rental is the possession, but not ownership, of a property for a limited duration of time under defined terms and conditions.
RENTAL BUILDING: A rental building only has apartments for rent and not for purchase.
SURVEY: A survey is a document indicating measurements, boundaries and the area of a property.
TITLE: the right to or ownership in the property
TITLE SEARCH: this is a process that examines local public records, laws and related court decisions to determine if any other parties have valid claims against the subject property.
USEFUL LIFE: The period of time that a property is expected to be economically useful.
YIELD: The yield refers to the return on investment.
ZONE: An area of a municipality or specific building that is zoned for a specific use, such as residential, commercial, etc.
ZONING: Zoning is the laws regulating land use.
Congratulations, you’ve been certified.