Economic Aspects Of Real Property: A Brief History And Origins of Real Estate.

Real Estate Agent with Integrity Realty

Where The Term Real Estate Come From.  

 A Brief History And Origins of Real Estate. 

Definition: Real Estate

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The Industrial Revolution.

The industrial revolution was one of the great equalizers in human history, The use of machines for manual labor freed many peasants for different tasks, and allowed a privileged few time for education and specialization into new fields of labor opened up by the mechanization of industry. Cobblers, seamstresses and cabinetmakers found that their once invaluable skills were now obsolete, leaving them to return to the land and the coal mines beneath it to try to eke out a living.

People were able to jump classes and bring some of their lower class sensibilities with them, leading to track housing for laborers and a range of products aimed at the lower classes.

 The people who made up the classification of peasants now became middle class, blue collar, white collar, and a handful of other things. They owned houses, cars, and eventually, radios and televisions, which suggested what other things they might want to own.

 Economic aspects of real property:

Land use, land valuation, and the determination of the incomes of landowners, are among the oldest questions in economic theory. Land is an essential input (factor of production) for agriculture, and agriculture is by far the most important economic activity in preindustrial societies. With the advent of industrialization, important new uses for land emerge, as sites for factories, warehouses, offices, and urban agglomerations.

 Also, the value of real property taking the form of man-made structures and machinery increases relative to the value of land alone. The concept of real property eventually comes to encompass effectively all forms of tangible fixed capital. with the rise of extractive industries, real property comes to encompass natural capital.

 Mortgages in Real Estate.

The invention of mortgages belongs to no particular country. Mortgages existed for a long time as an exclusive loan given only to nobility. After the industrial revolution, however, the wealth of the world increased to the point where banks opened themselves to "higher-risk" mortgage loans to common people. This allowed individuals to own their own homes and, if they so desired, to become landlords themselves. It took 30,000 years, but home ownership is now open to many people.

Mortgages in developing countries.

In recent years, many economists have recognized that the lack of effective real estate laws can be a significant barrier to investment in many developing countries. In most societies, rich or poor, a significant fraction of the total wealth is in the form of land and buildings.

In most advanced economies, the main source of capital used by individuals and small companies to purchase and improve land and buildings is mortgage loans (or other instruments). These are loans for which the real property itself constitutes collateral. Banks are willing to make such loans at favorable rates in large part because, if the borrower does not make payments, the lender can foreclose by filing a court action which allows them take back the property and sell it to get their money back. For investors, profitability can be enhanced by using an off plan or pre-construction strategy to purchase at a lower price which is often the case in the pre-construction phase of development.

But in many developing countries there is no effective means by which a lender could foreclose, so the mortgage loan industry, as such, either does not exist at all or is only available to members of privileged social classes.

Real Estate Business in Latin America.

The real estate business in Mexico and Central America is different from the way that it is conducted in the United States.

One important difference from the United States is that each country has rules regarding where foreigners can buy. For example, in Mexico, foreigners cannot buy land or homes within 50 km of the coast or 100 km from a border unless they hold title in a Mexican Corporation or a Fideicomiso (a Mexican trust). In Honduras, however, they may buy beach front property directly in their name. There are also different special rules regarding certain types of property: ejidal land - communally held farm property- can only be sold after a lengthy entitlement process, but that does not prevent them from being offered for sale.

In Costa Rica, real estate agents do not need a license to operate, but the transfer of property requires a lawyer.

Influence of Real Estate on the economy and people.

Ownership, specifically ownership of land, was the basis of all the investment opportunities we see today. Without a stable population and a set location, trade and commerce between groups is limited. Ownership has moved from being established by strength to being something you can buy, sell, trade and rent. There has always been a trade off for tenancy, a fee paid to the "owner" for the land and its protection.    This responsibility was first afforded to tribal leaders, then to kings and finally to landlords. Now we have the power to own our homes, a move that has changed the way people live.


 Categories of estates

Estates in land can be divided into five basic categories:

  1. Freehold estates: rights of ownership
    • fee simple (fee simple absolute)-most rights, least limitations, indefeasible
    • fee tail-inalienable rights of inheritance
    • conditional, Defensible estate, or determinable fee-voidable ownership
    • life estate-ownership for duration of someones life
  2. Leasehold estates: rights of possession and use but not ownership. The lessor (owner/landlord) gives this right to the lessee (tenant). There are four categories of leasehold estates:
    1. estate for years (tenancy for years)-lease of any length with specific begin and end date
    2. periodic estate (periodic tenancy)-automatically renewing lease (month to month, week to week)
    3. estate at will (tenancy at will)-leasehold for no fixed time or period. It lasts as long as both parties desire. Termination is bilateral (either party may terminate at any time) or by operation of law.
    4. tenancy at sufferance-created when tenant remains after lease expires and becomes a holdover tenant, converts to holdover tenancy upon landlord acceptance; see Forcible Entry and Detain-er Statutes
  • Statutory estates: created by law
  • Equitable estates: neither ownership nor possession
    • lien
      • general
      • specific
  • easement
    • easement in gross
    • easement appurtenant
      • ingress
      • egress



    Comments (2)

    Paul Campbell Realtor Lexington
    Rector Hayden, Lexington, Ky - Lexington, KY
    Kentucky Homes for Sale

    Thanks for the review Frank.  I find origins very interesting.  They always open a window to a view of the culture during that time.


    Jul 05, 2009 09:48 AM
    Frank Zeno
    Integrity Realty - San Antonio, TX

    I agree with you, thanks for taking time to comment, It is interesting to know how the Industry Developed.


    Jul 05, 2009 09:55 AM