Real Estate Lingo to Plain English

Real Estate Lingo to Plain English…
By Marilyn Newman

I’ve taken an excerpt of an article written by Tara-Nicholle Nelson for her blog on and edited it to make sense in our Puerto Vallarta real estate market. I hope you find it amusing as well as interesting.

…By now, you’ve probably heard the age-old rules of thumb about translating home listings from real estate lingo to plain English: ‘cozy’ = tiny, ‘needs TLC’ = needs massive repairs, and ‘all original details’ could mean beautiful moldings or moldy linoleum, depending on the home.

Almost everything about the real estate market has changed over the last few years, though, so we thought it was time to provide you with an updated real estate lingo decoder that accounts for those changes in the market. (That’s a picture of Ralphie getting his decoder ring in the mail, by the by.)

Motivated seller: This is a perennial term in listing parlance, but against the backdrop of the current market, translates to something like, “Have mercy on me.” I kid – this phrase often signals a seller’s flexibility in pricing and/or urgency in timing.

Coveted: In a word, “expensive.” No, seriously, even on today’s market, many locales have a neighborhood (or a few) which have been relatively recession-proof, have been fairly and have seen home values continue to rise. If you see the word ‘coveted’ in a listing, chances are you’re house hunting in that sort of neighborhood, or there’s something about the individual property the home’s seller is trying to position as unique and desirable, as compared to competing listings (i.e., the view, location of the lot, or floor plan).

BOM, often accompanied by “No fault of the house:” Homes go in and fall out of escrows, often due to things the seller has no control over. BOM indicates a home that was in contract to be sold, but is now “Back on the Market.” “No fault of the house” may describe a situation in which the buyer failed to get final loan approval, as contrasted to a situation in which the home’s inspection turned up deal-killing problems or the property failed to appraise at the purchase price.

Agents: What real estate lingo are you seeing being used to describe properties’ transaction types or financing details?

Buyers/Sellers: What real estate lingo have you seen – and been stumped (or amused!) by?

Complete original article from Ask Tara @Trulia,

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