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Jargon Buster

Understand property related jargon


  1. Capital

    The amount of money either put into buying a property or the deposit placed on a property. Also known as equity.

  2. Capped-rate mortgage

    A capped-rate mortgage sets a maximum rate of interest that the lender can charge, but only for a specified period.

  3. Chain

    The situation that occurs when a buyer is reliant upon completion of the sale of their existing property in order to complete on the purchase of the new property.

  4. Commission

    The estate agent's fee for selling the property.

  5. Common areas

    Areas of land or buildings, such as gardens, hallways, recreational facilities and parking areas, where more than one resident shares access.

  6. Comparative search

    A search that looks at the actual sale values of similar properties in the same area as your property. This search is normally carried out by a surveyor and should give an indicative sale price for a property.

  7. Completion date

    The completion date is the day on which money is transferred from the buyer's to the seller's solicitor. It is the date that the buyer becomes the legal owner of the new property.

  8. Conditions of sale

    The details that determine the rights and duties of the seller and buyer. These may be national, statutory or the Law Society's conditions.

  9. Contents insurance

    Insurance that covers the contents of a home, including electrical goods, carpets, furniture and curtains.

  10. Contract

    A legal agreement between the seller and buyer of a property, which binds both parties to complete the transaction.

  11. Contract race

    When two parties have made offers on the same property, the vendor will sell to the first party to exchange contracts.

  12. Converted flat

    A flat or apartment that has been created by the subdivision of a larger property.

  13. Conveyancer

    A qualified individual such as a solicitor or licensed conveyancer who deals with the legal aspects of buying or selling a property.

  14. Conveyancing

    The legal process surrounding the transfer of ownership of a property from seller to buyer.

  15. Conveyancing fee

    The charge made by a solicitor or conveyancer for undertaking the legal process necessary for the transfer of ownership of a property.

  16. Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML)

    The Council of Mortgage Lenders devised the Mortgage Code to ensure lenders treat customers fairly.

  17. Covenants

    Rules and regulations governing the property, contained in its Title Deeds or Lease.

  18. Credit check

    The procedure by which a check is made on the credit history of an applicant, usually conducted by one of the large dedicated credit rating agencies. The check will reveal history of credit card repayments, outstanding debts, arrears and County Court Judgments.

  19. Credit history

    A history of an individual's open and fully repaid debts. Checking a credit history helps a lender to assess the likelihood that a prospective borrower will maintain their mortgage repayments.

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