Your A-to-Z Glossary of Real Estate Terms

Your A-to-Z Glossary of Real Estate Terms

Ready to buy property? It’s a good idea to get to know what all those real estate terms actually mean. For detailed information and any clarifications, feel free to reach out to our qualified EVA Real Estate experts.

Agent: A real estate professional who will help you find a property and negotiate the best price.

Amenities: The add-ons that will enhance you living experience: gymnasium, sauna, swimming pool, BBQ area, kids’ play area, and other desirables.

Broker: The real estate professional who will help you with your property purchase.

Closing costs: Fees paid on the closing date of a transaction. Registration, real estate agency, land department, mortgage registration and processing fees. 

Commission: Monies paid to the agent to find property buyers.

Conventional Mortgage: Loan repayments to a bank. 

Default: When the buyer is behind on repayments.

DLD: Dubai Land Department (rate). A percentage of the cost of your new home that you pay to DLD.

Downpayment: A percentage of the cost paid upfront. Often from 5 to 20% of the property’s total value.

Equity: The value of a property. The more you repay, the more your equity increases.

Emirates Interbank Offered Rate (EIBOR): A fixed rate that UAE banks lend to each other. The current lending rate is important if you want to invest or sell.

En-suite: A bedroom with a bathroom connected.

Escrow: An account that is managed by a bank to collect tax and insurance payments from a homeowner.

Fiduciary: A real estate expert or company that legally acts in the best interests of the buyer.

Fixed-rate: A mortgage in which the borrowed amount is fixed usually from one to five years, depending on the agreement. 

Freehold: The buyer completely owns a property, including the land it is built on. 

Home Insurance: This protects you from liabilities against any misfortune such as theft and natural disasters. 

Lease Agent: A licenced real estate agent responsible for leasing real estate properties and signing the documents.

Leasehold: You own the property for 99 years, but unlike freehold, you do not own the land as well.

Lessee / Lessor: If you rent, you’re the Lessee. The landlord is the the Lessor.

Memorandum of Understanding (MoU): An agreement offered by the real estate agent, signed by both seller and buyer, featuring terms and conditions.

Mortgage: Loan to purchase a property, or money borrowed against the value of the property. 

Mortgage Broker: A professional who arranges property loans. 

Mortgage Interest: Money charged on a property loan. It may be fixed or variable. 

No Objection Certificate (NOC): A legal document that confirms there are no objections against the person buying a property. 

Off-plan: Simply put, buying property that hasn’t yet been constructed. Such real estate is cost-effective for buyers because they can sell before build.

Rental Yield: Basically, your return on investment (ROI).

Rent to Own: When you agree to rent a property for a time with the option to buy before the lease runs out. 

Return on Investment (ROI): The money you receive on a property relative to the property’s investment’s cost. 

Security Deposit: A refundable amount paid to the landlord, usually 5% of the annual rent. It is the landlord’s security against any damage to the home that may occur while you live there.

Tenancy Contract: A legally binding agreement that allows occupancy usually for one year. 

Title Deed: A legal document that transfers the ownership of property from seller to buyer. 

Variable Rate: A mortgage where the interest rate varies due to inflation.


With decades of valuable experience and dozens of highly professional, multi-lingual staff, we have the know-how to help you discover your dream home in the best area at the right price. To know more about real estate in Dubai, fill in the form and an Eva Real Estate agent will get back to you very soon.