Whether you are a first time homebuyer or a seasoned veteran, it is important to become familiar with common real estate terms before you start your home buying process.

Agent: A person authorized to act on anothers behalf.

Appraisal: A statement of value or estimation of the value of a property conducted by a third party person.

Assessment: The official valuation placed on a property for taxation or public improvements.

Buyer’s Agent: A real estate broker who represents a prospective purchaser in a real estate transaction.

Comparable Market Analysis (CMA): A study of recently sold homes, properties that were withdrawn from the market, and currently listed properties that are similar to another home in terms of price, location, and amenities.

Closing: All parties to a transaction conclude their details and transfer ownership of a house.

Contingencies: Conditions specified in purchase contract, such as a satisfactory home.

Earnest Money: A sum of money put up by a prospective buyer as evidence of intention put an offer on real estate.

FSBO: A property on the market not listed by a real estate broker but instead is For Sale By Owner.

Foreclosure Property: A property in the legal process of the lender terminating the owner’s right to it that was pledged as security for a debt.

Multiple Listing Service (MLS): A system by which a number of real estate firms share information about homes that are for sale.

Principal: A main party in a real estate transaction such as a buyer, seller, owner, etc.

Property Tax: A government tax on privately owner property based on its market value.

Recording: The filing of a real estate transaction with the government. A transaction is considered final when it is recorded.

Title: A specific document which serves as proof of ownership.

Title Company: A corporation whose primary function is to insure titles to real estate.

Warranty: An affidavit given to specify the condition of a property.