Apartment Terminology Explained

by | Mar 5, 2018 | Real Estate

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Terminology, jargon, “techno-babble”, there are many different words for “terms used in a niche industry or community, that sound like utter gibberish to outsiders”. And no industry is free of this, case in point; the apartment rental industry. This business has industry specific terms practically coming out of its ears. So when looking for new apartments in San Deigo, CA, it can be hard to keep up with all of the constant use of jargon. Not to worry, though, because for that very purpose is this short list of the most commonly used phrases, which you are most likely to hear when house hunting.

#1. In-Law

When your agent is talking about an in-law, they aren’t talking about the immediate relations of your significant other. In actuality, they’re referring to an additional, separate, unit of the apartment located on the property, where a single house or apartment would otherwise be. An in-law is usually located in a basement, on the ground floor, or above the garage. You should always make sure to check the legality of an in-law in your city, as they aren’t always allowed, or have special qualifiers attached to them, depending on the city you’re in.

#2. Flat

In the UK, a flat is simply their word for any kind of apartment, period. However, that not being the case here, flat has taken on a new meaning. In the U.S., a flat refers to an apartment in a building much older than the apartment itself, usually with its own floor to boot. For example, a building with two floors can have up to two flats.

#3. Convertible

No, your apartment salesperson isn’t talking about a car with a retractable roof when they start using this term. Instead, they’re referring to a convertible apartment. This type of apartment has a space, typically the living room, that’s big enough to be walled off (or curtained off, if you prefer) in order to make another bedroom. This is a great strategy when expecting company, or if you and your roommate cannot afford another apartment building with enough rooms for both of you. You or your roommate can sleep on the couch, and separate the living room with a wall or curtain in order to give you some much needed privacy.

There are several different terms thrown around in this business, but these three are some of the most common. If you have any other questions when dealing with a phrase you are unfamiliar with, you can ask the salesperson for clarification when they use such phrases. For more information visit Pacific Gate By Bosa.

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