real estate

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Real Estate

Land, buildings, and things permanently attached to land and buildings. Also called realty and real property.

Real estate is the modern term for land and anything that is permanently affixed to it. Fixtures include buildings, fences, and things attached to buildings, such as plumbing, heating, and light fixtures. Property that is not affixed is regarded as Personal Property. For example, furniture and draperies are items of personal property.

The sale and lease of real estate in the United States are major economic activities and are regulated by state and federal laws. The two major types of real estate are commercial and residential real estate. Commercial real estate involves the sale and lease of property for business purposes. Residential real estate involves the sale and rental of land and houses to individuals and families for daily living.

The sale of residential property is heavily regulated. All states require real estate agents and brokers, who earn a commission from the owner of real estate for selling the property, to be licensed. To get a license, a person must have a high school diploma, be at least eighteen years old, and pass a written test on real estate principles and law.

Since the 1970s, home buyers have been given additional protection under the law. Many states and municipalities require a seller of real estate to file a truth-in-housing statement. A seller must disclose any problems with the home, such as a wet basement or the presence of termites, on the form. Failure to disclose this information can result in the revocation of the purchase agreement or a lawsuit by the buyers against the seller for Fraud. In addition, some laws require an inspector to visit the property to determine if there are any problems.

Most purchases of residential real estate require the buyer to obtain a mortgage from a bank or other lending institution. The lending institution receives a security interest on the real estate, which means that if the borrower defaults in paying back the mortgage, the institution can obtain title to the property and resell it to pay off the mortgage debt.

The federal government enacted the Real Estate Settlement Procedure Act of 1974 (RESPA) (12 U.S.C.A. § 2601 et seq.) to ensure that the buyer of residential real estate is made aware of the many costs associated with the sale. RESPA mandates that a federally insured lending institution give the buyer advance notice of all the costs to be paid on the date of closing the transactions. These costs typically include the cost of property surveys, appraisals, title searches, brokers' fees, and administrative and processing charges.

Cross-references

Sales Law.

real estate

n. land, improvements and buildings thereon, including attached items and growing things. It is virtually the same as "real property," except real property includes interests which are not physical such as a right to acquire the property in the future. (See: real property)

real estate

noun acreage, block, chattels real, estate, fee, freehold, ground, hereditament, land, landed estate, lot, parcel, plot, property, real property, realty
See also: demesne, domain, estate, fee, holding, immovable, land, parcel, premises, property, realty
References in periodicals archive ?
These risks, for many years, have moved real estate markets through cycles.
But now that the real estate market is stabilizing and on an upward trend, well-established funds are also looking to shift to growth-type assets, which have variable rents that match market levels.
Market segmentation of the UAE real estate market by residential, office, retail and hotel on the basis of total supply, 2005-2010
Gary Gabriel, an investment sales broker for commercial property for Cushman & Wakefield in New Jersey, said that the threat to consumer spending from the current drooping real estate market is ratcheted up significantly by the prospect of the Fed having to use interest rate hikes to curb inflation.
While affordability is slipping, the economic fundamentals supporting the real estate market are still sound, analysts note.
More than 35 percent of the residential real estate market is controlled by national networks, and as that share increases, independent real estate companies will need to find new methods to compete.
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Rotante will utilize his 25-years of tenant representation in the Manhattan and Northeast commercial real estate markets to provide GVA Williams clients with the unparalelled level of service that has become a trademark of his career.
By any measure, this has been a great year for the local residential real estate market,'' said Jim Link, executive vice president of the Realtors group.
5 on a scale of one to 10, 10 being best, when asked how they would rate today's residential real estate market.
The report titled Oman Real Estate Market Outlook to 2013 discusses in details various aspects of Oman's real estate market with the focus on the government initiatives to attract foreign investors in the country and rising domestic population.

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