What Do All of those Real Estate Acronyms in Ads Mean?

Real Estate Agent with Bankforeclosuressale.com

You have probably been confused by all of the acronyms that get thrown around in real estate advertisements. There is a big reason that so many acronyms and terms are used in these ads.


For starters, a lot of advertisements have to pay for each word in print. Secondly, an ad may only get a certain amount of space to fit in all of their wording. This means that advertisers have to fit all of the necessary legal information at the bottom of the page. The only way to make it fit is by using acronyms.


But what do the most important ones mean? Here are some of the major ones that you need to know so you don’t get confused when reading the ads:




The CMA is a report that lists what other homes are selling for that are similar to the one that is in the process of being sold. It can stand for a couple of different things. Comparative and Competitive market analysis are the two meanings.




This stands for the After-Repaired Value and means that the house is possibly in need of repairs, or has already had them done. The number associated with this acronym is how much it is projected to be worth after repairs have been completed.




When it comes to buying a house, DTI is very important. It stands for Debt-to-Income ratio and plays a key factor in the financing of a real estate purchase.


Perhaps more than credit scores, DTI percentages are looked at to determine the financial worthiness of a potential home buyer.




This stands for the Federal Housing Administration. It is an organization that was founded 80 years ago and they are the ones in charge of insuring mortgages. Any lenders that are approved by the FHA are able to have mortgages insured through them.




A single family home is usually the most sought after on the market. Instead of an apartment building or duplex, it is completely detached from other homes. This is opposed to MFH (multi-family homes) category that the others would fall under.




This means that the property that is being advertised comes with a fireplace. There are a few different types of fireplaces so make sure to ask what kind it is.




This stands for Multiple Listing Service, and is the most common way of selling a home. This can be a broker that collects data about homes that they are selling for multiple owners and distributing that to the public for advertising. It is only through local means, though, as there is no nationwide coverage of MLS’s.




This is very important to the home. If you plan on moving in right away, then the property needs to come with a COO, as it means Certificate of Occupancy.


The property with a COO has been deemed up to code by the state and ready for residents to live in. It’s a safe way to know what you are getting out of the house, and that it doesn’t need major repairs.




RTO stands for Rent to Own. This means that the house is for sale, but you get the option of paying a monthly or weekly fee (rent) to live there. At a certain point, there will be an opportunity for the renter to purchase the property outright.


This is easier to get if you are suffering from poor credit as the owner of the property is able to collect money monthly before selling their home.




There are a couple of deviations, such as HDW and HDWD and they all mean that the property comes with hardwood flooring. Properties with hardwood flooring are considered to have higher values.



There are literally hundreds of acronyms to know when it comes to real estate, so this just scratches the surface. These are some of the major ones to look out for, though, when buying a property.

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