Don't be puzzled when your real estate agent starts throwing around property terminologies that only they understand. Here, we've listed down some useful and probably familiar terms - and what they mean - that you might have heard every now and then so that you will not get lost in property translation ever again.
A ACCEPTANCE LETTER A letter from you after going through the terms and conditions carefully, stating your willingness to accept a loan that has been approved by the banks.
APARTMENT Usually has fewer facilities than a condominium, with just basic features like a swimming pool and security.
APPRAISAL A report that comes from a valuer or appraiser that analyses the estimated cost of a property.
ASSETS Real and personal property in which a person has an unburdened ownership or equity that with which has value.
AUCTION This is a public sale of a property or real estate that is sold to the highest bidder.
AUCTIONEER A licensed person that is authorised to carry out a sale by auction.
AVERAGE ANNUAL GROWTH RATE Usually referred to in terms of property values, it's based on the percentage at which a region grows per year.
B BASE LENDING RATE (BLR) BLR is the base interest rate that is determined by each bank on a formulated calculation before deciding how much to charge (i.e. interest rate) for your home loan. Bank Negara Malaysia determines the rate, but it is adjusted by the banks. The BLR usually changes and will rise or drop unpredictably.
BANK VALUATION A survey to estimate the value of a property for mortgage purposes.
BUNGALOW In Malaysia, bungalows are stand-alone houses that come in one, two- and three-storey styles and are also called detached houses. They have open spaces on all sides and you have the choice to design and build your own house if you buy a readily available bungalow lot.
BUYER'S MARKET This happens when a majority of people are wanting to sell their properties but the number of buyers is relatively low.
C CAPITAL APPRECIATION or GAIN Capital appreciation is the increase in property value due to market conditions or supply and demand, etc.
CAPITAL GAIN Capital gain is the positive gain made from the sale of a capital asset.
CAVEAT A legal notice that prevents the re-selling, re-charge, or any other act by any other interest or potential buyers.
CERTIFICATE OF FITNESS (CF) CF is a certificate that allows you to move in after a property has been inspected for safety for human occupation. COMMERCIAL PROPERTY Properties such as malls, offices, etc., that are mainly used for business purposes.
COMMISSION Remuneration of a REA or REN for service rendered.
CONDOMINIUM Condominiums or condos, usually have extra facilities than apartments like a swimming pool, gym, clubhouse, CCTV, sauna, etc. They are owned jointly by unit owners and are subject to the rules and regulations of the condominium.
COUNTER OFFER A response to an offer that isn't accepted, with either a different price and/or commissions.
D DEED OF ASSIGNMENT A legal document initiated to assign title, rights, and interest where the title is not yet issued to the property.
DEFAULT Monthly instalments or interest payments that are due or that has not been paid.
DEFECTS LIABILITY PERIOD Is a set period of time that a contractor must return to a site after construction project has been duly completed to do repairs.
DEPOSIT A sum to be paid as an assurance that upon vacating the premises, the tenant will not breach the conditions of tenancy and will leave the property in a state of good repair and order.
DETACHED The same as a bungalow, detached is a term used to describe a property that stands alone.
DEVELOPMENT A newly built or older property which has been refurbished and modernised.
DEVELOPER A person or company that arranges for new buildings to be built, and buys, sells and improves buildings and land. You buy new developments directly from developers upon viewing the plan or show units.
DISBURSEMENT FEES Various types of fees that were incurred by banks and lawyers such as the registration of charge fee, land search fee, bankruptcy search fee in relation to the financing loan. The borrower pays the fees.
DISPOSABLE INCOME The amount of money that's left after all expenses, including taxes, have been paid for.
DOCUMENTATION FEE This fee is to pay for the preparation of agreements, forms and other documents that are connected to the loan.
DOWN PAYMENT This is the first payment you make when you buy a property and is usually 10% of the cost.
E EXIT STRATEGY A planned approach to terminating a situation in a way that will minimise damage or maximise benefit.
F FIRST RIGHT OF REFUSAL A contractual right that requires the owner of a property to give a person the opportunity to buy or rent the said property according to specified terms before offering it to someone else
FIXTURES & FITTINGS Non-structural items included in the property, such as lights, furniture, kitchen units, built-in cabinets, etc.
FINANCIAL INSTITUTIONS All commercial banks and finance companies licensed under BAFIA 1989 and Islamic banks licensed under the Islamic Banking Act 1983.
FREEHOLD It means any estate that is "free from holdâ€. There is no time limit and the freehold land stays with the title holder until it is transferred to someone else. However, only environmental and town planning controllers limit freehold developments.
FLIPPER Someone that purchases a home, renovates it and sells it for a profit in a short period of time.
FLOATING RATE LOAN A loan where the interest charge changes during the course of a loan due to the rise and fall of indicators such as the market or the BLR (Base Lending Rate)
FORECLOSURE Legal action taken towards the homeowner by the financial institution because the borrower is unable to make full principal and interest payments on the mortgage. The property is pledged by the borrower to secure the loan is then sold and the proceeds of the sale are used to settle the outstanding loan amount.
G GATED AND GUARDED Developments that have perimeter fencing and a guardhouse with controlled access.
GUARDED DEVELOPMENT These developments are often guarded and do not necessarily have perimeter fencing.
GROSS DEVELOPMENT VALUE (GDV) The GDV is the figure that is based on the total value possible from the sale of all units within that proposed development.
GROSS INCOME Income before taxes are deducted.
GUARANTOR If a borrower fails to pay, a guarantor is a person or entity that is legally bound to pay the debt incurred by the borrower.
H HOMEOWNERS INSURANCE An insurance policy that combines liability coverage for the homeowner, together with protection from damages caused by wind, fire, vandalism and other risks.
I INTEREST RATE The amount charged by the lender to the borrower for borrowing a sum of money expressed as a percentage of the sum borrowed.
INVESTOR A person that invests money into a real estate venture with the expectation of financial gain on the capital invested.
J JOINT OWNERSHIP Ownership of a property between two or more parties, usually between families, in undivided shares. Also, called "co-proprietorshipâ€.
K KEEPER Keepers are investors that have the intention to profit from properties by renting them out for at least a year, often many years.
L LANDLORD The person who rents out his/her property to a tenant.
LEASE A contract that states the terms where an owner of a property agrees to rent out the premises or part of it to another party.
LEASEHOLD Land that is returnable to the government for a set period after the expiry of the lease, usually 99 years.
LETTER OF OFFER (LO) A contract between the borrower(s) and the bank stating the terms of the housing loan package.
LOAN TENURE A set period that a person will take to fully pay their loan.
LOCK-IN PERIOD The number of years a person is tied to pay off the financial institution. Should you choose to pay off your home loan in full, you will incur a penalty.
LETTER OF ADMINISTRATION A Grant of representation issued by the High Court to a person to allow him to administer the estate of the deceased who died without a will.
LOAN TENURE Number of years taken to fully repay the loan principal and interest as agreed under a specific repayment programme.
M MAINTENANCE The act of keeping, or the expenditure required to keep a property in a good condition and to perform efficiently the service for which it is used.
MARGIN OF FINANCING The loan amount granted by the financial institution expressed as a percentage of the value of property pledged to secure the loan.