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Glossary

When you browse through our listings to find a property for purchase or rent, you will come across various terms displayed on the property details page.

Guide Price

The term "guide price" refers to the estimated price range at which a property is expected to be sold. It is typically provided by the seller or the selling agent as an indication of the property's value and to guide potential buyers.

The guide price is not a fixed or definitive price, but rather a starting point for negotiations. It helps prospective buyers understand the approximate range within which the seller is willing to consider offers. The final sale price of the property may be higher or lower than the guide price, depending on market conditions and the level of interest from buyers.

It's important to note that the guide price is different from the actual sale price, which is the price agreed upon between the buyer and the seller during the negotiation process.

Reserve Price

The reserve price refers to the minimum price that the seller is willing to accept for a property at an auction. It is a confidential figure agreed upon between the seller and the auctioneer.

During an auction, potential buyers place bids on the property, and the bidding continues until the highest bid is reached. However, for the property to be sold, the final bid must meet or exceed the reserve price. If the highest bid falls below the reserve price, the property may be withdrawn from the auction without a sale.

The reserve price acts as a safeguard for the seller, ensuring that they do not have to accept a bid lower than their desired minimum price. It provides a level of certainty and protection for sellers when selling their property through an auction process.

Sales Price

Being aware of the purchase price enables you to calculate the overall expenditure associated with acquiring the property. This includes not only mortgage payments and the deposit, but also additional expenses such as stamp duty, legal fees, and moving costs.

Tenure

Understanding the tenure of a property allows you to comprehend the legal ownership structure and identify any associated costs or obligations. This knowledge provides clarity regarding how you would legally possess the property and helps you assess any additional financial or contractual responsibilities involved.

Freehold

When a property is described as "freehold," it indicates that you possess ownership of both the property itself and the land on which it is constructed. As the owner, you typically assume responsibility for property maintenance.

Leasehold

Leasehold refers to the arrangement where you acquire the right to reside in a property for a specific duration of time, while the land on which the property is constructed remains owned by a freeholder. Typically, you will be required to pay ground rent and service charges.

The lease agreement records the length of the leasehold, and when it expires, ownership of the property reverts back to the freeholder. Extending leases is possible, although it can be costly.

The lease outlines the respective responsibilities for maintenance between you and the freeholder. Generally, you will need the freeholder's permission to make any alterations to your home.

Share of Freehold

In certain cases, the ownership of freehold is divided among multiple properties within the same building, such as flats or maisonettes.

As a result, you typically share the responsibility for property maintenance and enjoy a greater degree of freedom to make alterations or modifications.

Commonhold

Commonhold is a variant of freehold ownership applicable to properties that are part of an estate.

In this arrangement, individual flats within a block can be owned as freehold properties, while the common areas such as stairs and hallways are collectively owned and managed by a commonhold association. This association is owned by the freeholders of the properties.

As an owner of a property within the commonhold, you will be obligated to join the commonhold association and contribute towards the expenses associated with maintaining the estate.

Commonhold Details

Commonhold details refer to the specific information and documentation pertaining to the commonhold arrangement. These details typically include the legal framework, rights, and obligations governing the commonhold ownership structure.

Commonhold details may encompass various aspects, such as the establishment and constitution of the commonhold association, the allocation of individual freehold ownership rights, the management and maintenance responsibilities of the common parts, the financial contributions required from each owner, dispute resolution procedures, and any relevant restrictions or permissions related to property alterations or transfers.

The commonhold details serve as a comprehensive reference for owners within the commonhold, providing clarity on the rights, obligations, and operational procedures associated with this form of tenure.

Shared Ownership

Shared ownership is a type of leasehold arrangement where you purchase a portion or percentage of the property and pay rent for the share you do not own. There is usually an option to acquire the remaining share, albeit at an additional cost. When you decide to sell the property, you may require permission from the relevant authority or entity involved in the shared ownership agreement.

Shared Ownership Rent

Shared ownership rent refers to the portion of rent paid by an individual who has purchased a share of a property through a shared ownership scheme, with the remaining portion being subsidised through a mortgage or rent payment to a housing association.

Council Tax

The Council Tax Band for a property is a categorisation assigned by the local government in the UK to determine the amount of council tax that property owners or residents need to pay. The banding system is based on the estimated value of the property as of a specific date, typically related to the property's market value. Council Tax Bands range from Band A (lowest) to Band H (highest), with each band having a corresponding tax rate set by the local authority. The Council Tax Band is used to calculate the annual council tax bill for the property.

Rates Payable

In Northern Ireland, "rates payable" refers to the amount of money that property owners or occupiers are required to pay as a form of local taxation. Rates are levied by the local government to fund public services and amenities, such as schools, roads, and waste management. The rates payable for Northern Ireland properties are determined based on the capital value of the property, known as the Net Annual Value (NAV), and the regional domestic rate set by the Northern Ireland Assembly. The rates payable can vary depending on the specific property and its location.

EPC Rating

The EPC (Energy Performance Certificate) rating for a property is a measure of its energy efficiency. It is represented by a scale ranging from A (most energy-efficient) to G (least energy-efficient). The rating is based on factors such as insulation, heating systems, lighting, and renewable energy sources. The EPC rating provides information to potential buyers or tenants about the energy efficiency of a property and its environmental impact.

Ground Rent

Ground rent refers to a recurring payment made by the leaseholder to the freeholder or management company as stipulated in the lease terms. The amount and frequency of payment are specified in the lease agreement. Failure to pay ground rent can result in legal action by the freeholder, potentially leading to property repossession. The specific amount of ground rent can differ for each property, ranging from a few pounds annually to several hundred pounds or higher.

Ground Rent Review Period

The leasehold agreement includes a provision for a review period regarding the ground rent, which implies that the amount of ground rent can be subject to increase upon each review. It is important to consider that costs that seem manageable at present may not remain affordable in the future.

Annual Service Charge

Service charges encompass regular payments made to cover various expenses such as building insurance, caretaker services, lighting, heating, cleaning, and maintenance of shared areas within an estate.

While service charges are commonly associated with leasehold properties, newer freehold homes may also entail contributions towards maintaining communal facilities within the estate. It is important to note that these costs can rise over time and may be allocated to future, unforeseen maintenance needs, referred to as a reserve or sinking fund. It is crucial to have a clear understanding of the charges involved to avoid any surprises.

Length of Lease

The lease length refers to the duration for which you have acquired the right to reside in the property. It is a fixed number of years specified in the lease agreement.

Once the lease expires, ownership of the property reverts back to the freeholder. Extending leases is possible, but it can be a costly process.

Lettings Price

Having knowledge of the rental price provides you with information about the amount and frequency of rent payments. This understanding aids in budget planning and reduces the likelihood of missing a payment.

Available Date

The available date for a lettings property refers to the date on which the property becomes available for occupancy or rental by prospective tenants.

Furnishing Status

The furnishing status for a lettings property refers to whether the property is offered for rent fully furnished, partially furnished, or unfurnished. It indicates the presence or absence of furniture, appliances, and other items provided by the landlord for tenant use during the tenancy.

Deposit

The deposit for a lettings property is a monetary amount paid by the tenant to the landlord or letting agent as a form of security. It is held throughout the tenancy and can be used to cover any unpaid rent, damages, or other breaches of the tenancy agreement. The deposit is typically refundable to the tenant at the end of the tenancy, minus any legitimate deductions.

Tenancy Length

Refers to the duration or period for which a tenant is granted the right to occupy the property under a rental agreement or lease. It specifies the start date and end date of the tenancy, indicating the length of time the tenant has the right to live in the property and fulfill the terms of the tenancy agreement.

Peppercorn Rent

A peppercorn rent is a symbolic or nominal rent amount, often set at an extremely low value (such as a single peppercorn), typically used in leases or agreements where the landlord does not seek to profit financially but instead maintains legal rights and obligations over the property.

Size

Commercial property size refers to the area of a commercial property, typically measured in square feet or square meters, indicating the available space for business operations.

Use Class

A commercial property use class refers to a categorisation system that classifies properties based on their intended commercial purposes, aiding in regulatory and planning processes.

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