The 25 most confusing terms when it comes to property

Buying incentives and stabilising mortgage rates are spurring on 15 per cent of Brits to consider making a move in 2024.

A poll, of 2,000 adults, found 27 per cent of those considering a house move agreed things are looking more positive, after years of uncertainty around the housing market.

And 16 per cent are considering purchasing as there are now more incentives to help them.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

A fifth of prospective buyers are considering moving in the next 12 months, believing there are more new homes on the market in their area, with 44 per cent of the total sample are considering buying a new build when they next move.

However, 61 per cent feel confused by the jargon associated with the home moving process.

Phrases like ‘desk underwriting’, ‘stock plots’ and ‘porting your mortgage’, were found to be among the most perplexing jargon.

The research was commissioned by Cala Homes, which has also created a quiz to test home-buyers’ knowledge of these phrases, and a glossary breaking down the most confusing terms.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Allan Walker, director of sales and transformation for the home builder, said: “There are signs of optimism in the housing market, with people gaining confidence that 2024 could be the right time to move.

“Buying incentives and stabilising mortgage rates have encouraged the view that the upcoming year holds promise for a more favourable landscape. It seems many are now more inclined to explore opportunities around moving home.

“And we are starting to see more people lean towards the new build market – as incentives and facilitators are often available to make the process easier and more achievable.”

It also emerged ‘indemnity insurance’, ‘deposit unlock’ and ‘capital gains tax’ have left buyers and sellers scratching their heads.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

As a result, 41 per cent have moved home in the past without fully understanding the language used throughout the process.

And 45 per cent of these said it's because they go through the process so infrequently, it is easy to forget what words and phrases mean.

But 37 per cent think their confusion stems from never actually being taught anything about the process.

That said, for 68 per cent, despite being confused, all that really matters is knowing they can afford the repayments each month.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

The research, which was conducted via OnePoll, also found 61 per cent agree it is worse for today’s generation to buy and sell properties compared to 30 years ago. But 38 per cent also understand buying a new build property to be easier than purchasing an older home.

Everything being new and clean, better energy efficiency and the home being under warranty are the main reasons why they would opt for a new build over an older dwelling.

While 28 per cent like the idea of having more creative freedom with what the property looks like from day one.

Allan Walker added: “In the homebuying journey, confusion often sets in due to the technical jargon scattered throughout the process – but this confusion emphasises the role of seasoned professionals in the process.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

“Despite the complexity, having a trusted advisor – such as an independent mortgage expert or a sales advisor when buying a new build – to unravel the details, explain the jargon, and illuminate the way forward, supports buyers through their purchase and moving-in journey.”


The 25 most confusing property terms

  1. DU (Desk Underwriting)
  2. D Stock plots
  3. Porting your mortgage
  4. Land and buildings transaction tax (LBTT)
  5. Indemnity insurance
  6. Deposit unlock
  7. Capital gains tax
  8. Conveyancing/conveyancer
  9. Stamp duty
  10. Land registry
  11. Equity
  12. Offer in principle
  13. Leasehold
  14. Freehold
  15. APR (annual percentage rate) PX (part exchange)
  16. Variable mortgage
  17. Shared ownership
  18. Interest only mortgage
  19. Deeds
  20. Fixed rate mortgage
  21. Exchanging contracts
  22. Chain
  23. Buy-to-let
  24. Mortgage offer
Related topics:

Comment Guidelines

National World encourages reader discussion on our stories. User feedback, insights and back-and-forth exchanges add a rich layer of context to reporting. Please review our Community Guidelines before commenting.