Express Estate Agency Blog

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When you are selling your home, or buying a new one, you may find that you are bombarded with various complicated sounding terms. Here are a few of the commonly-used terms, and what they actually mean;

1.  Buildings survey – sometimes just referred to as a ‘survey’. This is technical report, carried out by a surveyor, on your property. A full inspection will be undertaken, and the condition of your property noted, including any structural issues. The survey information is then produced in the form of a report.

2.  Capital Appreciation – the increase in value of a property/asset over a period of time. This increase contributes to a positive return on a property investment.

3.  Chain – a common occurrence in the house selling process, this refers to a number of linked property purchases/sales where the exchange of contracts must take place at the same time, to allow all parties to complete on a certain date.

4.  Commission – this is a fee paid to your estate agents, and usually takes place following the exchange of contracts.

5.  Completion – this is the date when the seller and buyer complete the sale of a property. The buyer pays the balance of the purchase price and the seller gives possession of the property to the buyer.

6.  Contract – a contract is an official document, detailing the terms of the sale. A contract is usually created by the sellers’ solicitor, and a copy given to the buyer.

7.  Deeds – the ‘title deeds’ are the legal documents relating to a property. These documents include details on any matters relating to a property since it was built.

8.  Deposit – this is an initial percentage of money you pay upon exchange of contracts, to secure the purchase of a house.

9.  Equity – the difference between the amount owed on a mortgage, and the current value of a property.

10.  Freehold – legal ownership of land, a freehold means absolute ownership of a property (though technically speaking, all land is held from the Crown).

11.  Guarantor – this is a person who guarantees or ‘backs-up’ the financial obligation of another person, offering their money as security.

12.  Leasehold – to be granted ownership of a property but not the land it is built on. A leasehold property usually requires payment of ground rent to a landlord.

13.  Transfer – the legal transfer upon completion of a sale of ownership of a property.

14.  Vendor – the vendor is the legal owner of the property for sale.

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