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 ?
Safe Harbor" Statement under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995: Statements in this press release that express the current beliefs and expectations of our management are "forward-looking statements," including statements regarding the anticipated acquisition of the final property in the portfolio in July, and the future develop of the land parcel acquired in Johnson City, Tennessee.
66 ha, the land parcel which is zoned White will have a maximum permissible gross floor area (GFA) of 28,043 m2.
As the land parcel is situated many marketable enlargements such as Velocity @ Novena Square, United Square and Square 2, the property experts anticipates it to receive a strong attention.
NOTE TO EDITORS: A separate fact sheet is available that provides a description of each land parcel in the DNR/Trillium exchange.
Land parcel at Jurong Town Hall Road - The land parcel was made available for sale through the Reserve List system on 29 May 2012.
The adjacent 23-acre land parcel, including a 544-unit apartment complex currently situated on the parcel will be held for further development.
2 ha is housed by the land parcel and also has a maximum permissible gross plot ratio of 2.
87-acre land parcel located in Jersey City, New Jersey for a gross sales price of $15.
in the long-term net lease of a one-acre land parcel in the heart of New Jersey's desirable "gold coast" in Jersey City, N.
One land parcel is subdivided into seven single family home lots upon which WRP intends to build and sell custom designed homes.
The Offering includes approximately 487,618 square feet square feet, which is exclusive of Macy's, which owns its own store and associated land parcel and Nordstrom, which owns its own store and leases its associated land parcel.