Real estate property types

For the last few month, I’m working very near real estates industry.  The whole thing is pretty confusing even here, in Cyprus, where it’s in its infancy.  One of the small, but important things that I always feel confused about are property types.  What is a condo?  How is a villa different from a bungalow?  And so on and so forth.

Today I said – “Enough”.  I have to figure this stuff out.  Even if I will forget it all a moment later, I still have to run it through my brain.   But where to get the definitions?  Each web site seems to have its own idea of which types are out there and what each of them means.  Then I suddenly remembered about “define:” Google searches.  I don’t use it very often, but it saved me lots of time on several occasions.  Today is just one such occasion.  Here are the links to Google definitions of the most commonly used property types with my short summary notes:

  •  house – that’s as generic as it can get.  House is just about anything from detached to semi-detached, from village house to villa, through bungalow.
  • apartment – this one is also generic. Usually, this is a block of one or more rooms on a single floor of an apartment building.  There are many variations, of course.
  • flat – this is exactly the same as an apartment.  It’s just another word for it, used in some countries.
  • penthouse – this is a kind of apartment, which is usually at the top of the building.  Often, it is an expensive one,  because of the view and some outdoor space on the roof.
  • studio – a kind of a small apartment.  Think of it as a zero bedroom apartment.  Either it has no bedroom, or its kitchen is somehow integrated into a living room. Often, studio is the cheapest option.
  • condo – short of a condominium.  An apartment in the building, where common areas are jointly owned by all apartment owners in that building.
  • maisonette – a type of apartment.  Usually it spans more than one floor.  Often it has its own entrance, rather than a shared entrance with the rest of the apartment building.
  • villa – usually, the most expensive house.  Often outside the city.  It’s common for a villa to have luxury features like private pool and tennis court.
  • bungalow – often a one floor house, with large veranda.
  • cottage – usually a small, one floor house.  Usually outside the city.  Often has style and charm.

The above list can be generalized to just two types – house and apartment.  As you can see, there are only residential property types.  There are, of course, many more commercial ones, like office, shop, storage, etc. And then, there is land, which separates into land and plots.  And then there is probably something else.   But all that I’ll look at sometime later.  For now I need to sink the above list into my memory.

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