Real Estate Terminology

Understanding The Words You Need To Know


The number of years it takes to repay the entire amount of the mortgage.


The increase in the value of a property.


Placing a value on property for a purpose of taxation.

Clear Title

A property's ownership title that is free of liens or legal claims.

Closing Date

All legal and financial obligations are met on this day, and the title (and keys) to the property are transferred from the seller to the buyer. The closing date is usually the same as the possession date.

Closing Costs

These are expenses to prepare for in addition to the purchase price fro buying and/or selling a property.

CREA (The Canadian Real Estate Association)

An association that speaks for the real estate industry on federal public policy matters and that offers member services and education. CREA supports a strict REALTOR® code of conduct.

Down Payment

The amount of money given towards a property's purchase price.


When there is a physical intrusion onto an adjoining property, such as a fence, storage shed, or overhanging roof line, which intrudes onto another property.

Land Transfer Taxes

When you acquire a property or land, you pay land transfer tax to the province when the transaction closes. Land transfer tax is normally based on the amount paid for the land, in addition to the amount remaining on any mortgage or debt assumed as part of the arrangement to buy the land.

Listing Agreement

The contract between a listing brokerage and a homeowner that allows a REALTOR® to facilitate the sale or lease of a property.

Purchase Contract

Prospective buyers sign this legal contact that discloses the conditions and price for the purchase of a property.


Terms are standard and negotiated items agreed upon in a contract that must be legally upheld.


The legal evidence of ownership of a property.

Title Search

A detailed examination of ownership documents to identify the legal owner of a property and to uncover any liens or restrictions on a property.

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