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  Real Estate Glossary  
Absentee Landlord A lessor of real property (usually the owner)who does not live in a portion of the property.
Absentee Owner An owner of property who does not occupy said property.
Absorption A swallowing up or engulfment. Note : Land may absorb the building values, e.g., in cases where encroaching higher land uses increase the degree of obsolescence in the building, thus engulfing the bui
Access Right The act of agreeing or consenting to the terms of an offer thereby establishing “the meeting of the minds” that is an essential element of a contract.
Accession By accession, an owners title to improvements or additions to his / her property may be extended as result of either man-made or natural causes. For example, a fixture may be annexed to a building by
Accessory Buildings Structures used for the benefit of a central or main building, such as a tool shed, garage, or similar structure.
Accessory Buildings Structures used for the benefit of a central or main building, such as a tool shed, garage, or similar structure.
Accord An agreement by which one accepts something different (usually less) from what is owned as full satisfaction. The amount owed may be in dispute or simply accepted as full satisfaction by the creditor
Accrued Depreciation Total depreciation which has accumulated over a period of time. (1) The amount reserved each year in the accounting system for replacement of a building or other asset. (2) The useful life of a proper
Accrued Items Of Expense Expenses incurred which are not yet payable. In a closing statement accrued expenses of the seller are credited to the purchaser (taxes, wages, interest, etc.).
Acid Soil – A soil with an acid rather than an alkaline base. This can determine its suitability for farming.
Acquisition The act or process by which a person procures property.
Acquisition Costs Costs of acquiring property other than purchases price : escrow fees, surveys, title insurance, lenders fees, etc.
Acre A measure of land, 43560 square feet, 460 square rods, 4840 square yards, or a tract about 208.71 feet square.
Acreage Any parcel of land which may be measured in terms of acres. Usually qualified by its zoning or usage, such as residential acreage, industrial acreage, etc.
Action in Person am Court action seeking a judgment against the person, rather than against property, e.g., for money against the maker of an unsecured note.
Action in Rem Court action seeking judgment against property, e.g., for quiet title to property.
Action to Quiet Title A court action to establish ownership to real property. Although technically not an action to remove a cloud on title, the two actions are referred to as “Quiet Title” actions. (See also: Cloud On Tit
Addition (1) A portion of a building added to the original structure. (2) A synonym for subdivision in certain legal descriptions.
Addition of Fixtures Acquisition of title by addition of fixtures occurs when a person affixes it. The thing so affixed belongs to the owner of the land. Unless the owner requires the former tenant to remove it.
Adjustable Mortgage Loans (AML’S) Mortgage loans under which the interest rate is periodically adjusted to more closely coincide with current rates. The amounts and times of adjustment are agreed to at the inception of the loan. Also
Adjustable Rate Mortgage (ARM) A mortgage in which the interest rate is adjustable periodically according to a reselected index. The extent and number of these adjustments are agreed to at the inception of the loan.
Administrator A person appointed by the probate court to administer the estate of a deceased person who left no will, i.e., who died intestate. ( Administratrix, the feminine form).
Adverse Possession The actual physical possession of property has always been accorded considerable weight in connection with a variety of rights and obligations pertaining to real estate. An adverse possessor acquires
Aesthetic Value The value of a property attributable to the beauty of the improvements or surroundings.
Affidavit Written statement signed before a Notary (Or other authorized official) by a person who swears of affirms to the Notary that the statement is true.
Affidavit of Title A statement, in writing, made under oath by seller or grantor, acknowledged before a Notary Public in which the affiant identifies himself or herself and affiants marital status certifying that since
Agent One who acts or who has power to act for another. A licensed real estate broker authorized to act under a listing or management agreement executed by property owner, as Principal: this creates a fiduc
Agreement An exchange of premises, a mutual understanding or arrangement a contract.
Agreement of Sale A written agreement or contract between seller and purchaser in which the reach a “Meeting of minds” on the terms and conditions of the sale . the parties concur, are in harmonious opinion.
Agricultural Property (1) Land which is zoned agricultural. (2) Land used for growing of agricultural products or raising of live stock.
Air Rights The right to use the space above the physical surface of the land, generally allowing the surface to be used for some other purpose.
Alteration Method of crating a false identification document by tampering with a valid ID, i.e., by changing or altering its content. Also, changes in the interior or exterior of a building, but without changing
Amenities Satisfaction of enjoyable living to be derived from a home, conditions of agreeable living or beneficial influence from the location of improvements not measured in monetary considerations but rather
Amenity Package Special features such as swimming pool, tennis courts, etc.
Amenity Value The value of the pleasures of the property such as good neighborhood, schools, parks, playgrounds, etc.
Amortization The process of paying off a debt together with interest, usually with equal payments at regular intervals over a period of time.
Amortized Mortgage A mortgage loan in which the principal as well as the interest is payable in monthly or periodic installments during the term of the loan.
Apartment One or more rooms of a building used as a place to live, in a building containing at least one other unit used for the same purpose. Usually has, at least, cooking facilities, a bathroom, and a place
Apartment Hotel A building combining the features of an apartment building and a hotel. The units are furnished and may offer hotel facilities such as maid service, a restaurant, etc., but whose residents may stay fo
Apartment House A building with separate residential units, generally at least three units.
Appreciation An increase in value of property due to economic or related causes that may prove to be temporary of permanent.
Appreciation Buildup A projected increase in value of a property as a result of inflation and increased demand. Should always be clearly designated as a projected estimate.
Aquatic Rights Individual rights to the use of the sea and rivers, for the purpose of fishing or navigation, and to the soil in the sea and rivers.
Arbitration Clause A clause in a lease calling for the decision of a third party (arbiter) regarding disputes over future rents, based on negotiation. Also used in construction contracts, real estate purchase contracts,
Arcade A seldom used term describing a series of colonnaded arches, covering a walkway with retail stores on one or both sides. A forerunner of the present shopping center.
Arch A concave curved span which may be over a doorway or an entire room or building, such as an arched ceiling or roof.
Arch Rib Roof A roof used primarily in industrial buildings, and having the shape of an arch or crescent. It is supported by a bow-string truss which spreads the roof load evenly.
Architect A person who normally functions as a creator, co-ordinator, author of the drawings and specifications and the general Administrator of construction.
Architectural Drawing Includes all architectural contracts, drawings (except mechanical, electrical, structural and special areas of concern normally performed by consultants to the architect or owner) such as plot plans,
Architecture The design and construction plans for a structure. In recent times, the design for construction.
Area The surface (Plane) space of land or a building. Also describes a neighborhood, or large land section (such as the southern California area). The term may also indicate a use, such as a work area, liv
Area Zoning Mainly residential zoning which regulates the ratio of improvements to land, setbacks, etc. also called bulk zoning.
Asking Price The price at which the seller is offering the property for sale, the eventual selling price may be less or more, after negotiation with a buyer.
Assess To fix a value, to appraise. Most commonly used in connection with taxes.
Assessment The valuation of property for the purpose of levying a tax or the charge against a property in the amount of the tax levied. This may take the form of a levy for a special purpose or a tax in which th
Assignment of Rents A provision in a deed of trust (or mortgage) under which the beneficiary may, upon default by the trustor, take possession of the property, collect income from the property and apply it to the loan ba
Attachment The process by which real or personal property of a party to lawsuit is seized and retained in the custody of the court for the purposed of acquiring jurisdiction over the property, to compel and appe
Attest To affirm to be true or genuine, an official act establishing authenticity.
Auction A public sales of land or goods to the highest bidder.
Avenue Originally, a broad passageway bordered by trees. Now synonymous with street or road, and of no special significance.
Avulsion A sudden and perceptible loss of land by the action of water as by a sudden change in the course of a river. The original boundaries apply, and ownership of the land in questions in the original owner
Award In condemnation, the amount paid for the property taken.
Awning Canvas, metal or other material, which protrudes out over a window or doorway provide protection from the sun, rain, etc.
Azimuth Distance in degrees from North to an object, or, in the southern hemisphere, from south to an object. A surveying terms.
Abatement Notice A notice given to the owner or the occupant of a property that seems to be the centre of some trouble. The notice warns them of the intention of entering into the property and solving the problem.
Absolute Title (1) The right of ownership of a mortgage deed, which gives the right, in certain specified circumstances, to demand repayment in full, of the outstanding debt than the due date. (2) A clause in a d
Agreement for Lease / Sale When you enter into a lease / sale, you have to sign a contract for it to be enforced. In case of breach of contract, this very written and signed contract will be used against you.
Amortisation The systematic and continuous payment of a mortgage loan in installments to cover the principal and interest.
Annual Letting Value It is the rental value of the property fixed by the local authority for the purposes of levy of property taxes.
Appraisal A written report of the estimated value of a property prepared by a certified Real Estate appraiser or a valuer.
Assignment The transfer of a property interest, especially a lease, from one party to another.
Atrium An entrance hall of a building, often rising through a number of storeys and containing lifts, reception areas and plants. Originally, the hall or chief apartment of a Roman house.
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