Learning the Real Estate Jargon Can Help You Through the Buying Process

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When purchasing a new home, whether it is your first home, an investment property or another home, you will start to hear a lot of Real Estate jargon that can often make the experience very daunting. Here’s a quick guide to help you understand some of the lingo.


This is the increase in value of a home from the point after it is purchased.

Bank valuation

Bank’s do an assessment as to the value of the home. More often this figure will be more conservative than that of a Real Estate Appraisal.

Capital gains

This is the profit gained through the sale of an investment property. Capital Gains does not apply to Principal Place of residence.

Caveat emptor

As a buyer, this is essential to understand. It is Latin for “buyer beware”. It also emphasises the importance of having a building inspection prior to purchasing a home.

Counter offer

Once an offer on the home has been rejected, a counter offer can be made of a higher value that may be accepted by the vendor.


A reduction in the value of an asset over time.


These are marketing and related costs incurred by a real estate agent throughout the selling process that are passed onto the client.


This is the value held in the property which is above the debt that is yet to be paid against the property.


These are items in a property that can be removed and therefore do not greatly affect the overall value of the property. This can include washing machines and refrigerators.


These are fixed to the property that cannot and would cause damage to remove. These are sold with the property.

Negative gearing

This is the losses that have been incurred against an investment property, particularly initially before the property has begun to create a profit.   This loss can currently be utilised to reduce tax liability in Australia.

Reserve price

This is the lowest price that a vendor is willing to sell their property for and if not reached at auction will result in the property being passed in.

Settlement date

This is the date that the property changes hands from the vendor to the buyer.


This is the value of the annual rental income from an investment property which is expressed as a portion of the overall value of the property.

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