Glossary

The following Real Estate Glossary of Terms has been provided to aid you in the Home Buying, Selling, and Ownership process.

CLOSING DATE

The day your mortgage and title to the property is transferred into your name. Also the day you can legally move in.

COMMON ELEMENTS

The common elements of the corporation are owned proportionately by the unit owners and consequently are not reflected as assets in these financial statements.

CONDITIONAL OFFER

A conditional offer is a condition of sale that is agreed upon by both the buyer and the seller. A time frame is set and if the condition isn’t met within the specified time, the agreement is void and the buyer receives the deposit back.

DEPOSIT

An amount of money which must be given to secure a deal once all terms and conditions have been agreed to.

DOWN PAYMENT

A down payment is the amount, usually stated as a percentage, of the total cost of a property that you pay in cash during the onset of the purchase.

FEATURE SHEETS

Another very important aspect of marketing your home is making sure a beautiful and detailed feature sheet is available. The feature sheet will be something that compliments the website and is a simple way for buyers to “carry around” your home.
Included in the sheet are the aforementioned professional photographs of your house as well as the floor plans, any enhancements, a neighbourhood summary, a list of exclusions and inclusions, the web.

FIRM OFFER

Once all conditions in an offer have been met the deal is considered final. The house is no longer for sale and will become yours on the closing date.

FLOOR PLANS

Something that is necessary to get done before you list your home is a floor plan. These are detailed measurements of each room that also indicate where they are located in the house – this helps the buyer understand the layout of the house before they arrive and also determine whether or not their furniture will fit.

HOME INSPECTION

A home inspection is a limited, non-invasive examination of the condition of a home, conducted by a certified home inspector. The inspector prepares and delivers to the client a written report of findings. The client then uses the knowledge gained to make informed decisions about their pending real estate purchase. The home inspector describes the condition of the home at the time of inspection but does not guarantee future condition, efficiency, or life expectancy of systems or components.

‘JUST LISTED’ AND ‘JUST SOLD’ POSTCARDS

Beyond the basic ‘Just Listed’ cards that most agents distribute, we print your listing on a visually impactful card and deliver it in and around your neighbourhood. This helps spread the word and directs potential clients to your website. Neighbours often have friends that are looking for listings in a specific area, and these cards help advertise your home.

KITEC PLUMBING

This is a more recent concern in our market. Kitec is a widely used and common plumbing piping system made by IPEX. The fittings are not as strong as originally thought and as result they have been bursting. This piping system has been used in homes and condos. The condos I have known to date with this piping have all provided different solutions. For home owners it will definitely be a more one off situation/fix. The important thing is to have a home inspection. For condo owners the piping can sometimes be difficult to see if it’s behind the walls or in the common areas. We are still discovering the ramifications of this and need to proceed on a case by case basis. Additionally, I have contacted several insurance companies to find out if their policies cover Kitec. For the most part, it is not at the forefront of their concern. Mostly it will be down to confirming the type of pipe which helps to factor in any quotes.

KNOB AND TUBE WIRING

This is a type of wiring in homes until approximately 1950. The main drawbacks about this wiring is the insulation and it’s grounding (or lack thereof). Homes with this wiring not necessarily more dangerous however at some point insurance companies felt there was higher risk (likely due to the age of the wiring or the misuse) and mandated certain fixes before they would insure a home. Depending on the quantity of Knob and Tube, some insurers will ask for either complete removal or some modifications. This amount can be determined by the home inspector. Given the age of most homes in Toronto it is very common that this type of wiring will exist and it’s best to budget accordingly. For more information follow this link.

OIL TANKS

Oil tanks were used for appliances, furnaces and boilers. In the city we have sometimes seen them in basements or they are buried. The biggest concern is if they are full and leaking. While there have been regulations passed concerning the age of tanks and their associated mandated removal times, not all home owners are aware that they even have one. This is why it is important to have a trained home inspector inspect the property before you purchase.

POSSESSION DATE

Similar to closing date: The day you can legally move in.

PRE-APPROVAL

Involves completing your mortgage applications and credit check in advance of your home buying search. When a bank or lender provides you with pre-approval and/or rate hold, it means that they have agreed (based on the information provided) to provide you with a mortgage in the pre-approved amount. This process enables you to know how much home you can afford, know what your payments will be and most importantly, be ready to make an offer as soon as you find the right home.

RESERVE FUND

The corporation is required by the Condominium Act, 1998 to allocate to a reserve fund, amounts that, calculated from expected repair and replacement costs and life expectancies of the common elements and assets of the corporation, are reasonably expected to provide sufficient funds to repair and replace the common elements and assets. The reserve fund is charged with the cost of major repairs and replacement of common elements and assets of the corporation.

STATUS CERTIFICATE

Status Certificates are for condos only. This document gives the “overall” view of the condo corporation including its financial wellness. It also discusses rules and regulations of the condo building i.e if pets are allowed.