Helpful real estate terms, part 7

Once again we sort through some of the common and not-so common terms people often encounter in a real estate transaction.  We try to give very basic descriptions here and refer you to a real estate attorney any time a potential legal issue could occur in a deal.

Joint tenancy  This is when two or more people own a piece of real estate.  It’s helpful in that when one of the owners dies, ownership immediately goes directly to the one(s) still living, without the need for a will.

Laches  This means not asserting one’s rights in a timely manner.

Landlord  The person who owns any type of dwelling or land that is being rented or leased to someone else.  Differentiate from a manager of a property.

Latent defect  Defects within a structure that are not realized.

Lease  A lease is signed when one person rents or otherwise uses the property of another person.  Most common in real estate (houses, apartments, condos, etc.) but also used with vehicles and equipment.  The owner of the property is commonly referred to as the “lessor,” with the user of the property being known as the “lessee.”

Lease option  Also referred to as “lease with option to buy,” a lease option in real estate is an agreement in which the owner of a house leases to a renter (tenant) for a specific period of time and amount of monthly rent with the renter having the option to buy the home when the lease period is over.

Lease purchase  This is when the purchase in a lease option is made.

Leasehold estate  A deal in which a tenant is permitted to build upon leased land and profit financially from it.  These lease agreements are typically for 20 to 99 years.

Less favorable treatment  Discriminatory treatment of a person based on his or her race, sex, religion, disability, etc.  Fair Housing Laws forbid this type of action.

Leverage  When a person borrows money to fund an investment and magnify the rate of return, he is said to have “leverage.”

We hope these definitions have been helpful.  Look for more coming up in about a month.

Be informed.  Invest wisely.

Nick & Ellie