Understanding Basic Real Estate Terminology

Purchasing a home, whether for the first time or the tenth, is a complex and often intimidating experience. There is the large financial commitment of course, but there is also interaction with various professionals including (but not limited to) REALTORS®, lawyers, home inspectors, bankers and others. As with any profession, real estate has its own distinctive vocabulary and terminology which can seem mysterious to the uninitiated. To help dispel some myths, here are a few core terms used when buying or selling a home.

Closing date: As expected this simply means the date on which the money changes hands during the real estate transaction.

Possession: The actual date (and time) of when the buyer receives the keys to their new property. This is the final stage of the process and will occur once the closing has completed.

Conditions: Buying a home is far more complex than purchasing a loaf of bread. As a result, there are often requests in place within the sales contract for specific actions to occur before the sale can complete. Sometimes referred to as “Subject to Clauses” these conditions could be anything from having a home inspection completed, to the removal of a derelict automobile from the backyard. Conditions are specific to each property.

Deposit: This is the funding provided by the purchaser and held in trust by the real estate agent when writing the initial offer to purchase. This money is refundable if the purchaser fails to meet the subjects required to complete the sale. An example of this would be a purchaser being denied financing by their banking institution.

It’s hoped that by understanding some of the common terms the process of buying or selling a home will become less of a mystery and more of the important milestone in your life that it really is.


Decks Enhance A Home's Enjoyment And Value

Big or small, complex or basic, a deck is one addition to a home that can pay true dividends — both in terms of personal enjoyment, and as a means of adding to a home’s potential resale value.

Depending on the size of the home and the shape of the yard, a deck offers a unique way to add space, character and improved functionality to a property. A deck can be anything from a simple open space to host a family barbecue, to an elaborate covered ‘party central’ for hot tubs and large-scale festivities. A deck can dramatically expand a home’s living space at a relatively low cost per square foot. In the easy, breezy days of summer, a spacious deck becomes a true focal point of a home.

In essence a deck is the addition of a new room to a property, accessible to the resources found within, while allowing quick access to the great outdoors. As distinctive and personalized as the persons who own them, decks can be constructed of any material, but nothing compares to the character and warmth of a deck constructed of natural wood. Red Cedar, for example, is the ideal material for deck construction. One of North America’s most durable woods, Red Cedar is naturally resistant to both rot and insects which makes it the ideal choice for any outdoor application.

The addition of a well-designed and constructed deck can be much more than convenient entertainment venue. A deck can also be a genuine selling feature should you choose to put your home on the market. A professionally crafted deck can add distinctive architectural interest to any home or backyard and can be part of an overall outdoor upgrade that could include such functional elements as gazebos, trellises, planters, ponds and other water features and more.


Tips For Preparing Your Home For A Showing

You’ve decided to sell your home. You’ve contacted your favourite REALTOR®, and you’ve begun the process of putting your property on the market. Those are important first steps. But to attract the right sort of buyers, and to ultimately receive the sort of return on your housing investment you’d like, it’s important to make your home as appealing and as attractive as possible.

It’s a corny old saying, but it’s still true that you never have a second chance to make a good first impression. For the seller that first impression starts with what’s typically referred to as ‘curb appeal’ — or how the home looks when you first see it from the road. For many potential buyers that first glimpse could be the difference between a profitable sale and a home left on the market for an extended period.

A buyer will never know how gorgeous your home is on the inside if the exterior of the property is a turn off. Depending on the season always ensure the lawn is freshly cut, the autumn leaves are carefully raked, or if it’s winter that the driveway is shovelled and snow-free. Few things can dissuade a buyer more than having to trudge through snow or wet slush to get to the front door of a home.

Clutter inside a house is probably the first thing a prospective buyer will notice upon entering a home. Always pick up and put away anything that doesn’t need to be there — especially on stairs, tables or behind furniture. A pile of shoes by the doorway or a clump of newspapers and mail dumped on a table can give buyers a negative impression of the property.

The list could go on and on, but you get the idea. By taking a few steps before a showing, your property will appeal to a wider audience and ultimately sell for a higher price. It’s your biggest investment, so make the effort to get the full return you’re entitled to

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Data is deemed reliable but is not guaranteed accurate by the REALTORS® Association of Edmonton.
The trademarks REALTOR®, REALTORS® and the REALTOR® logo are controlled by The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) and identify real estate professionals who are members of CREA. The trademarks MLS®, Multiple Listing Service® and the associated logos are owned by CREA and identify the quality of services provided by real estate professionals who are members of CREA.