Free Resources

Discover valuable resources for free, including helpful guides, info and more!

Terminology - Real Estate matters

Terminology - Real Estate matters

date: None

Terminology - Real Estate Matters:


Agent Generally refers to the person selling the house, a Real Estate Agent. The most common ‘Agent’ referred to in NSW real estate.

Buyers Agent This is an agent that assists you, for a fee/ commission, to buy a home. They are useful and helpful with local knowledge & can ease the stress for interstate or international purchasing.


Buyer ManagerThis is someone, usually a licensed real estate agent, employed by the selling real estate agent to take buyer enquiry, conduct inspections and assist with selling the home. Other names are Assistant Agent, Sales Assistant.


Property Manager The person that managers the rental properties within a real estate agency.


Property Officer The person assisting the Property Manager.




Leasing Consultant/ Agent The person that helps with processing applications for rental properties,showing rental properties & taking enquiries from tenants to be.


Department Manager The person overseeing that part of the real estate agency, generally assisting the Licensee in Charge. Some agencies have a company for rentals and then another for sales and a separate person manages each ‘department’.


Licensee A person that holds a Certificate of License to practice Real Estate in NSW.


Licensee In Charge – The person that oversees the Real Estate Agency & is responsible for the trust accounting and legislative requirements of the business.


Licensed Real Estate Agent Any agent that is signing an Agency Agreement with a person to sell their home. A person that holds a Certificate of License in Real Estate NSW.


Certificate of Registration This is another lesser qualification than the license in NSW Real Estate. This is normally held by positions within the agency that are overseen by a Licensee or Licensed agent, including trainees or administration.


Auctioneer Licensed Agent & Auctioneer, qualified to sell homes under Auction conditions.


Vendor/ Owner Refers to the person/s selling the home.


Purchaser/ Buyer Refers to the person/s buying the home.


LawyerThe legal representative for the Vendor or Purchaser. Has a full law degree from a university. A lawyer can represent you in all things Property Law not just conveyancing.


Conveyancer The legal representative for the Vendor or Purchaser. Has not got a law degree however has a Diploma of Conveyancing.


Valuer The person sent from an independent valuation company to formally place a value on the home to determine it’s true monetary value. These can be arranged privately but are more commonly booked in by the bank during your purchase of a home to confirm your finance.


Pest/ Building Inspector An inspector, hopefully with building and pest qualifications, that inspects the property to determine if the home has any building defects in regard to the current building code or any pest concerns.


Strata InspectorThis is a person that is employed to physically attend upon the office of a strata manager to independently inspect their records and ascertain if there’s anything amiss or worth reporting to a prospecting purchaser. They normally refer to the financial position, any special levies or concerns with building works.


Special Levy This is a levy that can be introduced to a strata scheme / it’s owners to cover off on an unexpected or extraordinary expense that is not able to be covered by the funds held in the strata trust account & is in addition to the quarterly fees paid by the owners.


Finance Broker/ Broker The person that assists you with obtaining finance & assessing what products are best for you in your search for a home loan.


Strata Manager The person that managers a Strata scheme/ building. They liaise with the owners, tenants and trades in regard to everything that is required within the unit complex.


ExchangeThis is when you sign a contract for sale with an owner if you’re buying & pay a deposit to purchase the home. This enacts the statutory cooling off period in NSW.


Unconditional Exchange This is when your purchase becomes formalised & should you rescind the contract from this point you forfeit the full 10% deposit paid. This is generally what happens at the end of the statutory cooling off period in NSW


Offer This is when you put into writing what you’re prepared to pay for a home, how much and the conditions and/or inclusions that accompany your offer.** eg


Negotiations This is the part of the sale where there are people interested in buying starting the discuss the terms of buying with the agent & making verbal submissions for offering. Some may have offered formally, it’s the discussion or ‘back & forth’ stage prior to an offer being accepted


Offer & acceptance - This is when an owner has accepted an offer and has provided a set timeframe for the buyer to exchange the contract for sale.


Contract/ COS Contract of sale is the legal document prepared by the vendors lawyer/conveyancer that outlines the legal terms of the sale. A property in NSW cannot be marketed for sale without one of these in the agents or owners’ possession. It’s the document of which is negotiated upon.


Settlement This refers to the completion date of the sale. The day you get the keys and can call the home your own.


Cooling off Period This refers to the period of time following exchange whereby you have a set time (5 business days in NSW) to perform your due diligence & be sure of proceeding to unconditional exchange. Should you rescind in this time you forfeit the 0.25% of the purchase price paid and are not bound to the sale, even though you’d have signed a contract.


Good faith payment/ Holding Deposit in buying or selling a home in NSW this doesn’t exist and is not legal. If anyone asks for this without exchange RUN!

However, in RENTING & LEASING, a holding deposit is applicable & is 1 week rent, it then gets credited to your ledger & rent history when you move in. If you don’t proceed with the property you lose that deposit & don’t have to sign the lease.


Finance Clause This is a clause that allows you to exchange contracts for sale with allowance of you getting your finance finalised, for example in the event your finance is taking longer or you’re unnecessarily delayed this allows more time without penalty of going over the normal cooling off period. You’re only reason for rescinding the contract can be based on finance though.


Contract Term This is the time period that is from exchange of contracts to settlement (the time from when you sign the contract to when you get the keys) Generally in NSW this is 35 to 42 days.


Inclusions everything that is included in the sale. Generally things like, air conditioning, ceiling fans, hot water system, TV antenna, blinds, curtains, dishwasher, light fittings,


Exclusions things you may see in the property when you inspect that are not staying. This can be water features, plants, dishwasher, TV’s or TV brackets.


Pre-approval This is referring to your finance status. It’s advantageous and seen upon more favourably if you have a letter from the bank or your broker outlining how much they’re prepared to lend you based on your financial position. This is conditional upon the home you find meeting the correct criteria, generally including a formal valuation.


Finance Money/ Home Loan/ Funding/ Moolah, Cash, Cashola, Dosh,


Open Home A public viewing of the property, no registration necessary until you attend. You’ll be expected to provide your full name and mobile number before entering the home. It’s a condition of entry that you’ll comply with any other wishes or conditions that the agent or owner has outlined.


Inspection This is not necessarily a public viewing, it refers to any viewing of the property with an agent. It’s generally a condition of the Agency Agreement between the agent and owner that the agent, or their representative, are present for all inspections, of any sort.


Virtual Inspection / Video Inspection an inspection conducted either via live video chat with the agent, pre-recorded & sent to you or a 3D walkthrough of a property.


Lease Residential tenancy agreement. This can form part of the contract for sale if the property for sale has a current tenant residing in the home.


Tenant The person renting or paying a weekly amount to reside in the home that isn’t the owner.


Access/ Notice This is a reference to providing notice, as required by law, to a tenant or resident in the property. Generally 24-48 hours minimum is considered courteous.


Interest This refers to the number of enquiries, clicks, interactions or conversations around a property for sale. Generally referred to in conversations with an agent & buyer to ascertain the popularity of a property and therefore the urgency of action required by all parties.


Days on Market This is the amount of time a property has been advertised or available to purchase.


Pre-market this is the period of time prior to marketing. Generally when a home is listed for sale an agent will advise their VIP or known contacts with a ‘heads up’ that the property is coming up prior to advertising. This is generally the week or two prior to advertising.


Off-market this is the term used for selling without advertising. It’s selling on market if advertising and if not advertising it’s selling ‘off-market’.


Blue-chip Agents will advertise good areas/suburbs as ‘blue-chip’ – it’s a good or well known area. Some people will pay a premium for this area.


Locale this is a suburb, area or Location reference.


Drive-by Inspection This is when you drive by a home and check it out from your car without getting out & it’s more to inspect the area. If an agent is encouraging you to do this they are generally encouraging you to do so as there’s a point of interest it could be a busy road, awkward access, next to a petrol station, school etc.