Sandy Wills

 Real Estate Glossary

Real Estate Glossary
Our glossary is the largest dictionary of real estate and construction terms on the Internet with almost 10,000 definitions.

Aa - Ac - Ad - Ae - Ak - Am - Ann - Ar - As - At

see alternating current.

Architectural ornament in the shape of the acanthus leaf.

A tax calculation to provide greater depreciation during early years of ownership of property or real estate, mandated by the Tax Reform Act of 1986.

Bookkeeping methods to depreciate property more quickly in the early years of ownership.

A provision in some loans, which gives the lender the right to collect the full balance of that loan, if the borrower misses a payment.

Energy used in an air-moving system to accelerate the air to the required velocity.

Substance that shortens the setting times of concrete and mortar. Accelerators, or accelerants, are added in cold weather when there is a danger of the concrete or mortar freezing before it can cure properly. Accelerators are considered admixtures. Chemical substance added to a mixture to speed up a reaction.

Instrument that measures acceleration. It is attached to the surface of the object that will experience the acceleration. As the object moves, it causes an electric current to flow, which measures the amount of acceleration that is taking place and indicates that amount on the calibrated accelerometer.


Written approval, made by the seller, of acceptance of an offer made by a potential buyer

A means of entering a property or building. Ability to reach something.

Open area onto which the exits from two or more buildings lead.

Removable panel that permits entry to an area that is normally sealed.

The right of a property owner to go to and return from an adjoining street without interference.

Within reach.

Measure of the ability of disabled persons to enter and utilize a building and its fixtures. Typical items installed to improve accessibility include ramps and elevators.

The right of an owner to have the advantages of property ownership, which include air rights, mineral rights, riparian rights, and rights to alluvion, and manmade improvements. Acquisition of additional property by growth or increase in the existing property. It can be a natural process, such as a changing river course adding land or through the purchase of adjacent land.

Device that supplements the usefulness of a system or machine. Natural feature, such as a rock formation, used as a reference point in surveying.

Building which is secondary to the main structure on the same piece of property such as a shed or garage.

Unplanned event. Small but distinct surface irregularity in land.

Molding or decoration with the approximate shape of an ogee cut in the flat surface of an arch or lintel. An ogee is an S-shaped curve on a surface formed by a convex and concave surface curve joined together.

Type of door that is pleated into many vertical folds and supported by rollers inserted in a track at the top. As it is closed, the fold of the door resembles the bellows of an accordion.

Record of financial transactions. Credit extended. Commercial relationship involving credit. A customer. A financial fund.

Person who specializes in keeping, inspecting and adjusting financial records.

Money owed to someone else.

Money owed to you.

To join together.

Timber brace or a tie of timber between two structural members. Pairs of columns placed close together.

Natural process of adding soil to land, such as by water action which leaves earth or sand deposits. This is possible through flooding, storms, etc. Natural soil accretions belong to the property owner.

The recognition of revenue when earned or expenses when incurred regardless of when cash is received or disbursed.

Recording income as accounts receivable when earned and recording debts as accounts payable when they are incurred. Also called accrual basis accounting.

Recording income as accounts receivable when earned and recording debts as accounts payable when they are incurred. Also called accrual basis accounting.

To accumulate or be added periodically. To come about as a natural growth. To become enforceable. To increase.

Storage chamber for gas pressure. The accumulator contains pressurized gas, which can be fed into the item to which it is connected, such as a hydraulic or pneumatic system. The energy produced by the release of the gas serves as a motive force in the system to do the work, such as moving the fluid or actuating a valve.

Correctness. In conformation with a standard.

Without error. Conforming to a standard.

Charge of improper conduct.

A salt or ester of acetic acid used in the manufacture of such products as synthetic fibers and plastics.

A colorless acid which is the essential part of vinegar; it is used in the production of synthetic materials and solvents.

Volatile solvent often used for cleaning.

A hydrocarbon gas used in welding and flame-cutting operations; it generates high heat when used with gaseous oxygen under pressure.

Sour tasting compound that can chemically neutralize bases. Muriatic acid is commonly added to swimming pools to inhibit algae growth and to keep the water PH-balanced.

Chemical-resistant brick made from hard-burned shale, often used as flooring in areas where chemical spills are likely to occur.

Washing concrete with a 5 to 10 percent solution of muriatic acid to clean it, which can be done after the concrete has cured for at least two weeks.

Solder with an acid core designed solely for soldering metal together in non-electric applications, such as joining pieces of flashing together.

Declaration, in writing, that a person has acted voluntarily and is usually verified by an authorized official.

Pertaining to hearing or sound. Relating to music not electronically amplified.

Indicator of the ability of a material to transmit sound.

Unit used to measure a material's ability to resist the transmission of sound.

Resistance to the passage of sound through a medium, either solid, liquid or gas. It is caused by the internal and elastic properties of the medium, which allows it to absorb the sound.

Resistance to the passage of sound through a substance or medium caused by internal friction of the medium.

Any rigid material that attenuates or absorbs sound.

Rough, decorative coating, sometimes called popcorn because of its appearance. Coating is sprayed on to acoustical board to aid in the reduction of reflected sound. Acoustical ceiling coating applied over drywall has less sound damping properties, but requires less drywall preparation than other textures, offering both time, labor and cost savings.

Acoustically reflective panels used in concert halls to control the sonic properties of the hall.

Sound-absorbing material usually applied to walls or ceilings, including sound-absorbing tiles, cork, wood, etc.

Plaster that is mixed with a sound-absorbing material.

Tiles that reduce sound within a room. Achieving soundproofing between rooms, requires installationof other materials, such as heavy drywall and insulation. Acoustical tile, as well as other acoustical material, lowers sound within a room by absorbing it.

To acquire property through purchase.

Accepting or complying without objection, thus implying the waiver of the right to legal action.

The securing of ownership or controlling interest in a property or other object through either purchase or a merger.

Money borrowed for the sole purpose of purchasing property.

Land measurement equaling 43,560 square feet.

Volume of material required to cover an acre of land to a depth of one foot.

Small pedestal for a statue; the statue on such a pedestal.

Small pedestal for a statue; the statue on such a pedestal.

Noncrystalline thermoplastic that is clear, weather and shatter resistant.

Thermoplastic resin.

Resin used as a bonding agent or sealer in concrete construction.

Action occurring without the intervention of man which could include but not be limited to hurricanes, earthquakes, floods, lightening, etc.

A procedure brought before a court, in the form of a complaint, to demand a legal right, which in real estate would be to repossess or regain certain properties or hereditaments. An action based on the right of possession is termed possessory and a property right action is termed droitural.

Judicial proceeding against a person rather than against the property of that person. It would seek to have that person uphold the terms of a contract, make up for a loss or provide a service. In common law, it seeks the payment for a debt or damages incurred.

Judicial proceedings against property, literally "against the thing". While in legal theory an action in rem occurs only against property, in actuality it consists of a legal action between parties for the purpose of attaching or disposing of property owned by them.

Affording grounds for a lawsuit.

To speed up a reaction, such as the curing of concrete or the solidifying of epoxy. To put in motion. To make something more reactive.

Substance that acts as a catalyst, speeding up a chemical reaction without being affected by the reaction.

Energetic. Engaged in present operation or movement. Requiring a power input to operate.

Involvement in real estate ownership and management on a continuing basis as contrasted to passive participation. Tax laws provide greater tax benefits when the owner actively participates in real estate property and rentals.

Mechanical system for collecting solar energy. The water is heated in solar collectors, then stored in tanks for distribution within the building.

Transfer of solar energy, for storage or direct use, by utilization of fans or electric pumps.

Number of years that a building has been standing.

Direct knowledge, by a purchaser, of the terms of a property transaction, including all details in the public record relating to the title; liens, surveys, access, air rights, mineral rights, water rights, etc. Actual notice is either express or implied. Express notice has established that the purchaser was shown all the relevant details. Implied assumes that the purchaser's knowledge was sufficient to institute investigation and inquiry.

The actual size of a piece of material, as opposed to its nominal size. Boards and timbers are one size when "rough", and smaller after milling or finishing. For example, a 2' X 4" nominal size is only 1-½" X 3-½" actual size. Brick and block also have actual sizes different from their nominal size. With many other materials, the nominal size is the same as the actual. A 4' X 8" sheet of plywood, for example, is exactly that.

Device for moving or controlling something indirectly, such as an air actuator used to remotely open or close a valve.

see Air Acetylene Welding.

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Our glossary is the largest dictionary of real estate and construction terms on the Internet with almost 10,000 definitions.

Sandy Wills
RE/MAX Town Center
19873 Century Boulevard Unit 220
Germantown, MD 20874
Office: 301-540-2232
Cell: 301-873-1474
Direct: 301-428-9300