Property jargon buster – what do sellers need to know?

When it comes to selling a property, it can be very easy to get lost in all the jargon and terminology that is frequently used during the process.

With this in mind, and in an attempt to ensure you know your LTVs from your EPCs, we have put our heads together to compile a list of some of the more complicated property terms.


This is when you’re reliant on the sale of your own home (to another buyer) to fund the purchase of your new property.

What’s more, the people you are selling to or buying from might also be part of their own chains, and therefore any breakdowns in these chains could cause the collapse of your house sale/purchase.

Chains can be pretty hard to avoid, particularly when you’re in the position of buying and selling at the same time, but speedy correspondence and good preparation can help to keep your own sale and purchase on the straight and narrow, improving the chances of the whole chain running smoothly.


You will hear this word used plenty during the sales process. In its simplest terms, it’s the legal transfer of home ownership from the seller to the buyer, with conveyancers hired on both sides.

The conveyancing process begins when a buyer makes an offer that is accepted and ends when the keys are handed over by the seller to the buyer at the end of the process.


An unpopular but still common practice that takes place when a seller accepts a higher offer from a third party having already accepted an initial offer from another buyer. As a result, the original buyer’s offer has been gazumped – in effect beaten by a better offer.

There is little protection against it for buyers, and sellers are well within the rights to accept a higher offer even if they’ve already accepted one from elsewhere. But it’s a frowned-upon practice and one that the government has been pressured to ban or make more difficult.


The opposite to gazumping, which sees the buyer lower the offer they had made previously to the seller right before the exchange of contracts. In some cases, the seller could need a quick sale and might feel pressured into accepting a lower offer to prevent the sale being held up longer than it needs to be, or a whole property chain falling apart.

Like gazumping, it is perfectly legal but also frowned upon and – in the vast majority of cases – ethically dubious.

There are things sellers can do to prevent gazundering from being an issue, including opting for a chain-free buyer, setting a date for exchange in advance, moving quickly, getting a good estate agent, and being realistic with the price you set in the first place. The HomeOwners Alliance has a good lowdown on gazundering here.


Stand for loan-to-value, LTV means how much mortgage you have in relation to how much your property is worth. As an example, let’s take a home worth £200,000 – if you had a mortgage of £150,000 on that property, you would have a loan-to-value ratio of 75%.

The amount that belongs to you (otherwise known as the equity) would be the remaining 15%, or £50,000.

LTV takes on particular importance if you choose to remortgage or release equity in your home, and it’s also something that first-time buyers will need to consider. This cohort of buyers might not have as high a deposit to put down, and therefore will be relying on a mortgage with a higher loan-to-value.


An Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) is a legal document that proves how energy efficient your property is, which, in an increasingly green and energy-conscious world, has taken on added importance. Increasingly, buyers will be prioritising eco-friendly homes, and your EPC can help highlight how your home is performing on this metric.

The EPC will also give an indication of your home’s carbon emissions and an estimate of how much fuel bills should be costing, which will help buyers to decide whether or not your home is green enough for them.

Here at Expose Property, we can help you to sell your property, using our experience of selling homes in Beckenham, Penge, Crystal Palace and other places in South East London.

You can also get an idea of how much your home is worth by using our free instant online valuation tool here.


You may also be interested in...

Homes fail to meet insulation standards – how can you improve yours?
Industry Insights

Homes fail to meet insulation standards – how can you improve yours?

In today’s green-conscious society, an energy efficient home has become the benchmark for prospective buyers looking to cut down on…

Read more
Surveyor snags – what are the most common problems that affect sales/reduce offers?
Industry Insights

Surveyor snags – what are the most common problems that affect sales/reduce offers?

When purchasing a home, buyers will typically get surveys done to reveal any flaws that a property has. If severe…

Read more
Buyers happy to pay for upfront information – could this help to speed sales along?
Industry Insights

Buyers happy to pay for upfront information – could this help to speed sales along?

Living in the age of information, consumers have grown accustomed to gathering data before they decide on how they will…

Read more

We’re here to help

Whether you have questions regarding your property, our top quality services or you’d
like to get to know us, we’d be happy to talk.