Much of the terminology associated with real estate can leave buyers and sellers confused and anxious, especially when navigating contracts without the representation of a professional agent. 

To aid in understanding, the following is part one of a basic list of common real estate terms: 

  1. Appraisal - A third-party estimate of the value of a property, mostly based upon comparable sales of surrounding homes.
  2. Assessment - The taxable value placed upon a property.
  3. BPO - Broker price opinion, a written opinion of fair-market value as given by a real estate broker. 
  4. Closing Costs - A term referring to all of the costs associated with borrowing a mortgage to purchase a property, including both non-recurring costs and pre-paid items. 
  5. Contingency - In a Real Estate Purchase Contract (REPC), a contingency modifies the terms so as to allow the contract to be legally binding only if certain conditions are met. 
  6. Earnest money - Money offered by the buyer to show that he/she is serious about purchasing the home.
  7. Escrow - A third-party responsible for securing an item or document of value until all conditions of the contract are met. 

Stick around next week for part two of common real estate jargon!