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Lingo Every Homebuyer Should Know

Buying a home is a big step and one of the biggest investments you will make. So when it comes to getting serious about taking the first steps to home ownership we suggest learning the lingo so you are ahead of the game. Below is a list of real estate terms we suggest every homebuyer should get familiar with.

realtor working with couple at their office


When a lender verifies your financial information and determines how much money they are willing to lend you.

Debt-To-Income Ratio

How much you currently owe (like your student loan or credit card balances) against how much you make. Which determines if a bank will approve you for a loan.

Comparative Market Analysis (CMA)

Current market pricing trends of similar properties in the neighborhood of a your desired home. This will be provided by your Realtor to help you formulate an offer.


A legal document submitted to the seller or the seller’s agent detailing what you’re willing to pay for a home, how you will pay for it, and other specifics.


An appraisal, also called a property valuation or land valuation, is an objective estimate of a home’s value. A bank will require an appraisal of the property to ensure that the loan amount is appropriate


When the terms of property sale have been agreed upon in writing. The seller has accepted the Buyer's offer, but the transaction has not been completed yet. All contingencies must be met before a sale is finalized,


Conditions listed in the contract that must be met before the sale of the home is complete.

Closing Costs

The expenses beyond the purchase price, such as taxes, lender costs, attorneys fees, and title insurance. These are negotiable items on a contract.


Documentation stating that the homeowner has the right to possess and use the property.

Title Insurance

This is prepared by a title company such as Willow Bend Title and protects you from any previous legal issues around the property’s ownership. You can read more about this process here.

Have you purchased a home recently? What real estate terms and lingo did you find the most confusing? Are there other topics you feel would be beneficial to those buying or selling a home? Contact us and let us know.

While you are here feel free to browse our past blog posts and helpful resources and don't forget to share this post to help homebuyers prepare. The more they know the smoother the closing process for everyone!


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