A Glossary from JW Wood estate agents

Glossary

Glossary of terminology

Bridging Loan

A short term loan commonly used to cover or ‘bridge’ the overlap between the purchase of a new property and the sale of an old one.

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.

Commission

The estate agents fees for selling your property.

Common Areas

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

Completion Date

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

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,

Contract

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

Conveyancing

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

Covenants

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

Energy Performance Certificate (EPC)

An EPC measures the energy efficiency of a property using the scale of A-G. It is a legal requirement to have an EPC commission before a property can be marketed.

Exchange of Contracts

The point at which signed contracts are physically exchanged, legally binding the seller and buyer to the sale and purchase of a property at the agreed price.

Fixtures and fittings

All non-structural items included in the purchase of a property.

Gazumping

When a seller accepts a higher offer from a third party on a property that they have agreed to sell to someone else prior to exchange of contracts.

Land Registration

The process of registering the legal title of an area of land with the land registry, typically handled by a solicitor.

Lease

A legal document by which the Freehold (Or Leasehold) owner of a property lets the premises or a part of it to another party for a specified length of time, after the party of which, ownership may revert to the Freeholder or superior Leaseholder

Local Authority Search

Procedure whereby a buyer’s solicitor check with the local council regarding any outstanding enforcement or future development issues that might affect the property of immediate area.

Negative Equity

A situation in which the value of a property has fallen to below the level of the loan secured on it.

Offer

A sum of money that the buyer offers to pay for a property

Solicitor

A legal expert handling all documentation for the sale or purchase of a property.

Subject to Contract

Words that confirm an agreement is not yet legally binding

Surveyor

A professional person qualified to estimate the value and condition of land and property

Title Deeds

Documents showing the legal ownership of a property.

Title Search

An investigation carried out by a conveyancer or solicitor into the history of ownership of a property. The search will check for liens, unpaid claims, restrictions of any other problem that may affect ownership.

Transfer Deeds

The Land Registry document that transfers legal ownership from seller to buyer.

Under Offer

The status of a property for sale when a seller has accepted an offer from a buyer prior to exchange of contracts.

An overview of terminology commonly referred to when buying or selling a house