Charlottesville Real Estate Alphabet Soup has Plenty of Puzzlers
Buyers and sellers are more well-informed than ever before due to easy access to online Charlottesville real estate sites (like mine—and BTW, thanks for stopping by!). Given the advent of constantly updated listing data and the abundance of accompanying commentary and analysis, it’s no surprise that the level of real estate sophistication is significantly higher than it was even just a few years ago. It also means that more members of the general public are likely to find themselves in the puzzling presence of some real estate alphabet soup that haunts realms formerly visited only by real estate and mortgage industry professionals.
True: it’s easy to query Google to decipher acronyms like “DHSC.” But then you’ll have to wade through red herrings like “Doctor of Health Sciences” and “Defense and Homeland Security Consortium”—or even Deployment Health Surveillance Capability (that’s from Munich, Germany, but it’s listed as a possibility). Real estate’s “DHSC” is short for Direct Home Selling Costs”—meaning the combined selling expenses (carrying costs, loss on sale, repairs and improvements, commission, closing costs, etc.) all lumped together in one succinct 4-letter package.
Here are some common real estate-related acronyms you may come across from time to time:
HUD/RESPA—The statement you get at the closing table which spells out all the monies paid out and received: short for “Housing and Urban Development/Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act.”
PMI—The kind of insurance borrowers pay for home loans of more than 80% of the property’s value: short for “Private Mortgage Insurance.”
TOM—When a listing is taken off the market because of illness, travel, repairs, etc.: “Temporarily Off Market.”
PITI—The four parts that make up monthly mortgage payments: “Principal, Interest, Taxes, Insurance.”
IDX—The technical term used in connection with real estate search sites that display the parts of Multiple Listing Service information that’s marked for public access: “Internet Data Exchange.”
APR—The by-now familiar term which takes all of the costs of generating a loan and combines them into a single percentage number: “Annual Percentage Rate.”
There are a whole mini-dictionary’s worth of other real estate terms and acronyms, but if you are one of Charlottesville’s buyers or sellers, you usually won’t have to deal with many of them. Not so “CMA”—that’s the “Comparative Market Analysis” I’ll provide to help brainstorm the best asking price for your property. Call me for that one when it’s time to think about selling!