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The simple definition of real estate is “ A piece of land, including the air above it and the ground below it, and any buildings or structures on it.”

The legal definition, at least in those countries such as the which are or were part of the British Empire or Commonwealth (and thus whose legal systems are based on English Common Law ) including the USA, Canada, Australia, and India is that real estate encompasses land along with improvements to the land, such as buildings,fences, wells and other site improvements that are fixed in location – not movable.

Indeed many other countries use the term “immovable property” or the equivalent in their own language. For example a German property company would normally have the word “Immobilien” in its name.

Real estate law is the body of regulations and legal codes which pertain to such matters under a particular jurisdiction and include things such as commercial and residential real property transactions.

Real estate is often considered synonymous with real property (sometimes called realty), in contrast with personal property (sometimes called chattel or personalty under chattel law or personal property law).

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Category: Guide to City Jargon 

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