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Deciphering the Real Estate Listing

Deciphering the Real Estate Listing


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Looking for homes to buy has changed quite dramatically in the last decades. No longer are the days when you’d have to go to the real estate office to see which homes were for sale.  All you need to do now is click a couple of buttons and all the listings are available right at your fingertips! Deciphering those listings might require a bit more knowledge and skill, but with our handy-dandy list, you will get just a little more insight into real estate lingo.

Chattels and Fixtures

On every listing, you’ll find what chattels are included and fixtures excluded in the listing. Chattels are personal property, such as couches, lamps, etc and fixtures are objects that are firmly fixed in place.  This is actually quite a grey area of real estate, so look at this list closely. Light fixtures, since they are affixed in place, are included in the listing and any that the homeowner wants to keep would be included in the exclusion list of the listing.

Power of Sale

Have you ever wondered what Power of Sale really means? Power of sale is simply a way for a lender to sell the property. Typically, the homeowner has defaulted and the lender is looking to make the sale. Sometimes these can go for a great price, so it’s always something to look for.

Vendor Take Back

Have you seen the terms Vendor Take Back in a listing and wondered what that means? That’s when the homeowner is willing to give you a private mortgage. Your monthly payments will be going to them instead of a financial institution. It’s a great way for those who don’t qualify for a mortgage from a financial institution to buy their home.

“as is”

Oh, and what about the term “as is”? Don’t fret! It doesn’t necessarily mean that the house needs major renovations! It means that the seller isn’t warranting anything. Usually it’s because the seller hasn’t lived in the home and can’t tell you if anything’s in working condition or not. This is when a home inspection is a very good idea (although unless you’re doing a complete gut job, I always strongly suggest a home inspection).

Fixer-upper or Handy-man Special

“As is” is typically different than fixer-upper or handy-man special. The latter terms mean that the home is in need of some repairs.  Sometimes, it’s as easy as removing the pink toilets and bath tubs and maybe fixing up some light fixture. Other times, it means that the plumbing and electrical need to be updated. Typically, you can still live in a home that is deemed a fixer-upper and simply work on the repairs slowly.

Now whenever you’re searching for homes, you’ll be able to find that dream home just a little easier!

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