Real Estate Terminology: C

Caveat Emptor:
"Let the buyer beware." A legal principle based on the concept that the buyer is buying at his/her own risk. The buyer must examine the goods or property he/she is buying, therefore, buys at his/her own risk. Most frequently in evidence relating a real estate auction, disposition by power of sale, or municipal sale for unpaid taxes.

The name given to a mortgage document when title is registered.

Personal property which is tangible and moveable. Usually items that may be removed without injury to the freehold estate.

Closed Mortgage:
A mortgage that cannot be prepaid, renegotiated or refinanced during its term without significant penalties.

Cloud on Title:
Any encumbrance or claim that affects title to real property.

Conventional Mortgage:
A first mortgage issued for up to 75 per cent of the property's appraised value or purchase price, whichever is lower.

Common Law:
That part of the law formulated, developed and administered by the common law courts, based originally on common customs and mostly unwritten.

Compound Interest:
Interest on both the original principal and on interest accrued.

Condition Precedent:
A condition in a contract which calls for the happening of some event, or performance of some act, before the agreement becomes binding on the parties. Typical examples include offers that are conditional on the sale of a buyer's property or the arranging of a mortgage.

Condition Subsequent:
A condition referring to a future event upon the happening of which the contract becomes no longer binding on the parties. This condition has divergent meanings and usage's in real estate depending on provincial jurisdiction.

Something of value given by a promisee to a promisor to make the promise binding.

Construction Lien:
A claim filed in the land registry office by an individual, or company, for labour or material, or both, supplied for the improvement of the property. Terminology may vary by province, e.g., builder's lien, construction lien, mechanic's lien.

The transfer of an interest in property from one person to another.

A person to whom a debt is owed by another person termed the debtor.

For more terminology and jargon check:

Buyer Info

Buyer Info

Since choosing a right property to buy starts with needs and desires and finishes with a sizable portion of your earnings used for paying for it, it's important to ensure that the property you choose both meets your needs and is a good "fit" with your financial situation.

Seller Info

Seller Info

If you currently own property and are thinking of placing it on the market, get informed about preparing your home for sale, pricing your property appropriately, marketing it effectively and learn everything you can about real estate sale process so you can maximize your chance of a profitable sale by avoiding costly marketing mistakes.


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Although not complete, the glossary of real estate terms will help you with some of the more common terms. More...

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