GLOSSARY OF REAL ESTATE TERMINOLOGY
Here Are Some of The Most Commonly Used And Misinterpreted Real Estate Terms. Please Look For Monthly Updates to These Pages.
Access Right - The right of an owner to access his/her property. (Cutting a curb etc.)
Asking Price - What an owner would like to receive in a sale of property.
Assessed Value - A valued established for property tax purposes.
Assignment of Lease - Transferring one's right to use leased property.
Attornment - When a tenant agrees to be a tenant of a new landlord.
Balloon Mortgage - A mortgage that requires a large, final payment.
Base & Meridian - Used in a property survey. Imaginary lines.
Base lines run east/west and Meridian north/south.
Binder - A deposit and an agreement, in good faith, to purchase property.
Buffer Zone - A dividing area between two areas of different land use.
Chair rail - A waist high molding used to protect walls from chair damage.
Chattel - Personal property. Any tangible property other than real estate.
Corporeal - Tangible/visible personal or real property.
Deed - A legal document that when signed, transfers ownership of land.
Demised Premises - A property which is subject to leasing.
Distraint - The right of a landlord to seize a tenant's personal property in lieu of rent.
Double-hung window - A window with two sashes which move up and down.
Earnest Money - When a purchaser places a deposit on real estate.
Easement - The rights that one has in the property of another. (Utility company)
Egress - A means of exit or to have access to public roads, etc.
Ejectment - When a landlord takes action to regain property when there is no lease.
Eminent Domain - When property is taken for public use by the government.
Fanlight - A semicircular window sash often found over doors.
Filtering Down - Where a neighborhood is progressively occupied by low-income residents.
Finial - Some form of decoration found at the uppermost points of a structure.
Frame house - A wooden framed house.
Listing Broker - The real estate broker who advertises the property for sale.
Mantel - A frame found around a fireplace made of wood, stone or brick.
Metes & Bounds - A technical description of a property. Boundary lines etc.
Molding - Pieces of wood used in detailed finishing or as trim.
Multiple Listing Services - An association of real estate brokers who agree to share listings.
Puffing - Overstating the benefits of a property.
Rider - An attachment to a contract or lease.
Riparian Rights - The rights of a person's use of a public waterway.
Sidelight - A pair of long windows which flank either side of a door.
Selling Broker - The broker who finds a buyer for a listed property.
Usufructuary Rights - Use of a property that belongs to another.
FIX-UP AND CONTRACTOR TERMINOLOGY
HERE ARE SOME OF THE MOST COMMON AND NOT SO COMMON TERMS USED IN THE EVERYDAY LANGUAGE OF CONTRACTORS. IT IS VERY IMPORTANT TO KNOW THESE TERMS IN ORDER TO CARRYON AN INTELLIGENT CONVERSATION. HERE THEY ARE IN SIMPLY STATED LANGUAGE.
KEEP CHECKING FOR UPDATES TO THESE PAGES!
Access Panel - A removable panel that provides access to shutoff valves.
Air Filter - Protects the furnace blower and other components from dust.
Attic Fan - A fan that draws air from inside the house and pushes it through vents.
Bargeboard - A fascia board affixed to a roof to hide carpentry work.
Bead - A round molding found around windows and doors.
Bearing Wall - A wall that supports its own weight and any vertical load.
Beam - Used in a structure to support floors and ceilings.
BX - Electrical cable which consists of two or more wires in a flexible covering.
Building Brick - A standard brick which is universally used in building. (No Holes)
BTU - British Thermal Unit. Energy required to raise the temperature of one pound of water by one degree Fahrenheit.
Blower - The fan that moves the air from the furnace through the ducts.
Boiler - Heating system that uses fuel in order to heat water.
Blanket Insulation - Rolls of fiberglass.
Crawl Space - Located beneath a structure and usually stores plumbing and wiring.
Concrete Form - A constructed mold used to set poured cement.
Conduit - A metal pipe in which electrical wire is installed.
Cement - Binding agent in concrete, mortar and grout.
Concrete - A mixture of cement, water, gravel and sand.
Cored Brick - A brick with several holes in the center for extra strength.
Clapboard - Horizontal wooden strips of siding material.
Cleanout - A plug in a sewage or drain pipe that allows cleaning access.
Cap - A fitting that joins pipes of different size or material.Course - Rows of stones, shingles, bricks applied in a horizontal fashion.
Coupling - A connector fitting that allows you to connect two pieces of straight pipe.
CPVC - Chlorinated polyvinyl chloride. Plastic used in pipes.
Condenser - Coils through which refrigerant is pumped.
DWV System - Drain, waste and vent. Uses gravity to carry water.
Drywall Construction - Interior wall construction which does not require the use of plaster.
Decking - Boards which are used to construct the floor of a deck.
Dimmer Switch - A switch which can control the amount of light produced.
Duct - Tubing through which air is carried from the furnace to the rest of the structure.
Drop-cloth - A large piece of plastic or cloth used to protect flooring.
Expansion Joints - Allows for expansion and construction between sections of concrete.
Exhaust Fan - Fan that pulls air from kitchen and bathrooms.
Enamel - A latex or alkyd-based paint.
Exterior Paint - Those paints most suitable to withstand the weather.
Flat Paint - A type of paint that dries to a non-flective finish.
Frame Construction - A building which is primarily constructed of wood.
Footer - The cement base used to support construction.
Foundation - Supports the superstructure.
Foundation Wall - Concrete or masonry wall below the ground for frame support.
Fascia - Trim used in edging in order to provide a decorative finish.
Fabric - Physical material of a building.
Frost Line - Where the frost penetrates the soil.
Floodlighting - A bright light used to illuminate a large space.
Fluorescent Bulb - A phosphorous coated glass bulb that provides light with little heat.
Four-way Switching - A system that enables a single source to be controlled from multiple locations.
Ganging - A bank of switches which can control various devices from one location.
Gloss Paint - A type of paint that produces a shiny, reflective finish.
Hot Water Dispenser - Provides instant hot water from you sink spray hose area.
Heat Pump - An electric refrigeration unit that either provides heat or cool air.
Humidifier - A device that reduces the humidity in the air.
Head Joint - Mortar between the ends of two bricks.
Header - A system of bricklaying where the small end of the brick faces out.
I-Beam - A beam made of steel used to support long spans, such as in basements.
Incandescent Bulb - The most popular bulb, made of glass with a metallic filament.
Jamb - Lining at the head or side of a door or window.
Joist - Used in horizontal framing for ceilings and floors.
Kilowatt - Measurement = 1,000 watts.
Lath - Wood or other strip material used to support wet-water plaster.
Lumens - Amount of light emitted by a bulb.
Leads - The first row of brick walls which determine length and alignment.
Loose-fill Insulation - Various components which are poured between walls and floors.
Latex - A quick drying, water-based paint.
Masonry - Stone, brick or concrete held together with mortar.
Masking - Using adhesive tape to cover certain surfaces from being painted.
Mortar - A mixture of sand, gravel, water & cement used as a brick bonding agent.
O-ring - Rubber rings that open and close water ports.
Paneling - A wall surface with vertical panels.
Pitch - The slope of a surface.
Plumb - Ensures exactness in perpendicular and vertical measurements.
Pointing - Removing loose mortar between bricks and replacing it.
Plumber's Putty - A putty used to adhere various plumbing fixtures.
PB - Polybutylene. A type of plastic used in pipes.
Plenum - The main ducts leading from the furnace.
Primer - A type of paint, used on the first coat that binds the finish.
Pigment - An agent that gives paint its color.
Roughing-in - Installing pipes in unfinished walls and floors.
Registers - Grilles attached to the end of ducts which allow the furnace air flow into a room
Radiator - Heating device attached to the furnace that circulates hot water through pipes.
Rolling - The method of painting using a roller.
Rafter - Sloping beams which provide main support to a roof.
Retaining Walls - A wall which is erected to support a bank of dirt.
Rowlock Header - Long, narrow end of a brick is faced out.
Rowlock Stretcher - Broad surface of a brick is facing out.
Stud - Usually a 2x4 used in vertical framing. Typically spaced 16" apart.
Superstructure - Part of the structure above ground and foundation walls.
Subfloor - Plywood nailed to the floor joists before the finished flooring is laid.
Soffit - Used for attic ventilation and placed on the underside of the overhang.
Single-pole Switching - Simple on/off switch to operate a fixture.
Spotlighting - Often used as security lighting, it produces an intense beam of light.
Snaking - Clearing blocked drains via the use of an auger.
Solar Heating - Warm air via the heat of the sun.
Semi-gloss - A paint that has a finish between flat and high gloss.
Satin Finish - Another term for a flat, non-reflective finish.
Spray-painting - The use of a spray gun or aerosol cans to paint a surface.
Stretcher - A lengthwise laid brick.
Three-way Switching - Wiring system which allows two switches to control one fixture.
Tee - A physical "T" shaped fitting that allows the joining of 3 pipes.
Tubular Sleeve - A foam product used to insulate pipes.
Tapping-in - Connecting new pipes to existing pipes.
Thermostat - A device that monitors temperature and adjusts for heating and cooling.
Turpentine - A solvent used for cleaning-up after painting and thinning of paint.
Trimming - Using a small brush to paint tight or difficult areas.
Vapor Barrier - Material used to prevent condensation in walls.
Wall Heater - Electric unit that is used to heat a single room.
Wythe - The thickness of a brick wall. 1-wythe is a wall of one brick in thickness.
Zoning - Dividing heating and cooling distribution within a house.