Descriptive Terms in Real Estate Ads – Yet More Definitions

If you are buying or selling a home, the chances are good you struggle with the meaning of descriptive real estate terms. Here are explanations and definitions for more terms.

“Plantation Shutters”

Refers to interior shutters with large, moveable louvers that can be used much like Venetian blinds. Often they’re used only on the bottom half of the window.

“Palladian Window”

A tall window that is rectangular except for an arched top and has wooden muntins separating the panes of glass. It is based on a revived classic style of architecture and the work of Andrea Palladio. Builders often use them as the window over the front door in homes with two story entrance foyers.

“Pocket Doors”

Doors that open by sliding into a slot in the wall much as a serving tray fits into a vertical slot built into a kitchen cabinet. It leaves wall space unaffected by opening and closing doors. I’ve seen them on bathrooms in modern houses. I’ve also seen them used in pairs that meet in the middle when closed as they were in older houses. Between a living room and dining room might be a good place. My grandmother had one between the front and back parlors in her home in Richmond, Virginia. Now that was a neat old house. It could always expand to accommodate one more family member or friend.

“Fireplace,” “Wood Stove,” “Wood Stove Insert”

A fireplace can burn wood, coal, or gas (natural or propane). If gas, it may or may not be vented to the outdoors. It is generally thought to be dangerous to have a non-vented gas fireplace in a bedroom and is against “code” in many areas. A wood stove burns wood, is free standing (on a non-flammable surface), and is vented to the outside. A wood stove insert is generally fitted into an existing fireplace designed to burn wood or coal. Preferences have to do with perceived beauty, convenience, heat production, and safety.

Well, those are some of the terms frequently seen in real estate listings and advertisements and their usual meanings at this writing. I hope you find it useful.