Property Lingo


Our team came up with the initiative to have a Property Lingo page for all new starters and overseas tenants. It can be quite challenging to navigate unfamiliar property terminology, especially for those who are not native speakers of the language. If you need any further assistance or additional terminology explanations, please don't hesitate to ask one of us!




An individual seeking to rent a property and enter into a tenancy agreement.


An acronym for the Association of Residential Letting Agents, a professional body in the property lettings industry.

AST (Assured Shorthold Tenancy):

A formal tenancy arrangement permitting a tenant to occupy a property for a specified duration, usually one year.

Building Insurance Premiums:

Payments made at regular intervals to insurance companies to maintain an active building insurance policy.

Buy to Let:

A term used when a property is acquired with the intention of renting it out to tenants.

Buy to Let Mortgage:

A mortgage product designed for individuals purchasing property with the intention of letting it out to tenants.

Communal Area:

Shared living spaces like stairwells or gardens, accessible to all residents with no exclusive rights.

Company Let:

A rental arrangement with a legitimate company as the tenant.

Contents Insurance:

Coverage protecting personal belongings and possessions within the property from loss or damage.


A legally binding document between two parties, imposing obligations to fulfil the terms and conditions specified.

Credit Reference:

A background check by a specialized agency to assess an individual's credit history, including any County Court Judgments (CCJs) or poor payment history.

Damage Disputes:

Disagreements regarding responsibility for property damage.


A monetary sum, typically equivalent to five weeks' rent, paid to the landlord or their agent, refundable based on the property's condition.

DPS (Deposit Protection Service):

A custodial tenancy deposit protection scheme, accessible at

Early Release:

When a tenant requests permission to end their tenancy before the agreed expiration date.

Electrical Installation Condition Report (EICR):

Required for all tenancies to assess electrical safety.

Energy Performance Certificates (EPC):

Mandatory assessments of a property's energy efficiency conducted before letting, in effect since October 2008.

Fire Safety Regulations:

Governing specific actions that landlords or tenants must take. Further details can be found at

Fixtures and Fittings:

Items typically provided in a rental property, such as curtains, carpets, blinds, light fittings, kitchen units, and appliances.


The entity that owns a building and leases portions of it to leaseholders.

Fully Managed Service:

A service provided by an agent to a landlord, where the agent manages various aspects of the letting process, including rent collection and tenant communication throughout the tenancy.

Gas Safety Regulations:

Governing the safety of gas appliances and related pipelines. Further details can be found at


An individual who agrees to guarantee rental payments and other tenancy obligations, often required to demonstrate a regular income.

Housing Benefit:

A state benefit designed to assist people with low incomes, whether employed or unemployed, in covering their rent expenses.

Inventory and Schedule of Condition:

A detailed list of a rental property's contents and their condition, typically inspected by all parties on the tenant's move-in day and signed by everyone involved.

Joint Tenancy:

A rental arrangement where two or more tenants share equal rights and responsibilities during the tenancy.


The individual who grants the use of their property to another party in exchange for rent.

Let Agreed:

A tenancy that has been mutually accepted by both the landlord and the tenant, pending the signing of a formal contract.

Letting Agent:

A person or company engaged by the landlord to manage various tenant-related responsibilities on their behalf, usually for a fee.


A property spanning multiple floors, often a portion of a larger house.

Market Appraisal:

An assessment of the expected rental value a property can command.

Meter Readings:

Data collected from utility meters, indicating usage of services like electricity, gas, or water.


An impartial organization that investigates complaints filed by customers against professionals, such as letting agents or solicitors.

PCM (Per Calendar Month):

An abbreviation used to represent the monthly rent amount.


Fees or charges incurred for violating contractual terms or regulations.

Property Portal:

A website that aggregates property listings from various sources, facilitating property viewing for landlords and tenants.


The process of evaluating an applicant's suitability as a tenant, including their ability to meet rent payments and their track record in previous tenancies and employment.

Rent Guarantee:

A form of landlord insurance that safeguards against loss of rent due to tenant breaches, often available for an annual fee.

Smoke Detectors Act 1991 Legislation:

Governs the installation of hard-wired smoke detectors in newly constructed properties since 1991.

Tenancy Agreement:

A legally binding document outlining the rights and obligations of both tenants and landlords, with terms and conditions for the rental agreement.


The individual or party legally entitled to temporary possession of a property.

Section 21:

A legal notice to begin the process of ending an assured shorthold tenancy.

Section 8:

A notice indicating the landlord's intention to seek possession of their property due to a breach of the tenancy agreement or a desire to change its use.

Utility Bills:

Typically include costs for electricity, gas, and water, with payment responsibilities often falling on the tenant.

Wear and Tear:

The gradual deterioration of a property due to normal use over time.